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First build beginning, all help appreciated.

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by J. Crawford, May 3, 2010.

  1. J. Crawford

    J. Crawford

    Feb 15, 2008
    Well, Ill be coming up on my 5 years playing mark in august, and I want to commemorate it by building my first bass. Now, I want to build this bass, not just assemble a parts bass. It needs to be mildly cheap, but not cheaply done.

    Right now I am honestly no farther than the planning stages. Im going for a Jazz bass like bass, maybe a direct variation of the Jazz bass body.

    I was also thinking of making a Jazz bass body, but making it a single cut and messing with the lines a bit.

    All help is appreciated! Ill keep this thread updated with ideas, woods, plans, etc.

    Hopefully Mike (mikeyswood) will help me out! Maybe Ill make some overnight runs to Cinci! :D

  2. Dream Weaver

    Dream Weaver

    Jul 11, 2009
    It's an addictive hobby. =) Looking forward to seeing it come together.
  3. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Banned

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    The most important thing that you can do right now is look for deals. Electronics and hardware for a good build can easily top $400 for quality stuff. I was able to collect all of the parts that I needed for my Punisher build for ~$150ish. I expect the total for the completed instrument to be ~$450ish.

    Next, the wood: if you buy from a wood retailer you will pay retail prices. If you have access to a lumber mill you will pay mill prices. Much better! Sugar Maple is had for ~$2/bf and Mahogany for ~$4.

    The finish is going to be ~$100 or more for a quality spray. Much more if you are not doing it yourself. One way to reduce this cost is to go with oil.

    Ask lots of questions. I will answer with how I do things. That doesn't mean it's right, it just means that's how I do it. Plenty of builders here with many approaches.

    You are welcome to my corner of Ohio anytime and I will help you however I am able.
  4. Rocky McD

    Rocky McD

    Jun 28, 2005
    San Antonio, Texas
    I would first establish a total budget and then decide what you can spend in each area.
    Buying premade quality parts, you can easily exceed $1,200.00 Building on a very strict budget, you can reach $400.00 quickly. Sometimes buying an inexpensive bass and refinishing/modifying it is a good start on learning how to do it.
  5. J. Crawford

    J. Crawford

    Feb 15, 2008
    I want to build a bass, not redo a stock one. ;)

    Well, I have a bridge I can use from my MIA, and/or use the Hipshot A from it. Pickups and tuners are a different story. I cant spend a lot, and Ill buy stuff as it goes. Ill do woods and such first, then buy stuff as I can.

    Mike, youre in for the long run here, so be prepared!
  6. mikeyswood

    mikeyswood Banned

    Jul 22, 2007
    Cincinnati OH
    Luthier of Michael Wayne Instruments
    The wood is cheap. If you spend more than $200 for your first build then you should buy from me! Maple and Mahogany for a build should be ~$150ish.

    Try to keep about $200 on hand to jump on deals for pups, tuners, and a pre if you want one.

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