foam mutes, what do you use?

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by corinpills, Apr 23, 2012.

  1. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    Definitely increases thumpability, to my ears. I don't do it on every bass, but on a jazz with flats, it's the perfect thing. On this one, I cut a strip out of a foam pop screen thingy that came with a Shure SM7b mic. It got rid of exactly the upper mid thoink that always bothered me about this bass if I played hard.

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  2. BZadlo

    BZadlo Supporting Member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    I was complaining about not having a proper mute during a recording session a few years ago. Without missing a beat or even standing up, the producer reached over and ripped a piece of acoustic tile off the wall and handed to me.
    It is absolutely perfect and I still carry it around with me in my gig bag.
  3. treekiller


    Mar 4, 2010
    I've been experimenting with 5/8" foam backer rod(weatherstripping). It is a round,grey, foam strip available at most any hardware store or lumber yard. I cut a piece the width of the bridge and put it under the strings in front of the bridge saddles. It doesn't deaden it quite as much as a traditional mute, but does work and is easily removed. :cool:
  4. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    Any kind of foam that sounds right to you is OK.
  5. Subscribed out of curiosity.

    I tried a chunk of foam that came inside a hardware case I used for an old pedalboard, but it was too soft and squishy, didn't mute as much as I would've liked.

    I thought about trying a BassMute, but haven't bit the bullet. Still looking for less expensive foam options. Treekiller, I like your idea, may have to go wander the hardware store. :)

  6. Jay2U

    Jay2U Not as bad as he lóòks

    Dec 7, 2010
    22 ft below sea level
    I used foam muting a year ago. The most effective muting, without sympathetic vibration of adjacent strings, consists of a small piece of relatively dense foam per string. Each string its own little mute, this prevents acoustic coupling through the foam.
  7. Timmy-Watts

    Timmy-Watts I like bass. And airplanes. Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2010
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    A rolled up purple crown royale bag is perfect. That or a yellow guitar cloth rolled up make my 57 reissue P sound like Jamerson. I learned this from A.Scovanner.
  8. bassingeorge

    bassingeorge Supporting Member

    Jul 28, 2003
    San diego, CA
    They sell mutes over at

    You can use the jaguar guitar version, or buy the one that sticks under the ashtray. They got em'.

    I found a piece of very light foam that I just fold and stick under the strings. That does the job! And it was free! :)

  9. I use a chunk of black foam that came with a window AC unit I bought a few years ago.

  10. I have used dish sponges before. They work great. Cut them in a strip with a pair of scissors to the width you want, and you're thumping away. You can get a bag full of them in a variety of colors at the dollar store.
  11. For a foam mute I use the foam that's used under single-coil pickups on a Stratocaster. I had a couple laying around, and I stuck one in the bridge cover right where the strings break over the bridge saddles. It's got a sticky side, and it's fairly dense so it deadens pretty well.
  12. xk49w


    Apr 13, 2008
    Bob Babbit

  13. It doesn't take a dish sponge or a rag, since they are a little too-muted I think. And ugly.

    Just a touch of foam can drive the persistence and a lot of the harmonics away without totally stealing all the richness. And look good while doing it too.



  14. BZadlo

    BZadlo Supporting Member

    Mar 4, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    Everyone has something in their house that will work well for muting. I recommend that you don't spend more than $1 or so on this. Those metal click-on muting contraptions are pretty silly IMO.
  15. bass_lord_mutha

    bass_lord_mutha Supporting Member

    Oct 6, 2006
    Odessa, TX
    That's funny that you mention that, because I was contemplating buying a BassMute a year or so ago and thought "The only added advantage here is having multiple degrees of muting or having no muting at the flick of a lever. How lazy have we become that we can't take half a second to pull the foam off or 2-3 seconds to put in back in?"...But that's just my opinion, of course. I used 2 different thicknesses of foam cut from some packing material to get different degrees of muting.
  16. Hellbottom


    Apr 17, 2012
    Mr. Clean Magic Eraser cut into strips. It's nice and stiff, and holds shape well.
  17. +1 to both, and both are reasons I don't have a BassMute either. I've tried the foam thing, I'm just still looking for the right _____ for the job. Got a few ideas from this thread that I definitely want to try!

  18. Billy K

    Billy K

    Nov 5, 2009
    North Bay Marin
    Hellbottom those are abrasive they also have a cleaner in them. Not sure long term if it is good for the finish.I do use them around the house for spot cleaning they are awesome
  19. jarrydee


    Oct 22, 2011
    thats what I use, I have tons of them around hear and just ripped a piece that fits
  20. john_g

    john_g Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2007
    I have used my built in mutes on my Ric 4003 and they work great on a few songs we do. However, they take some time to adjust up and then back down to the right heights and at a gig, its usually too much trouble. I wish it was a flip of a lever, on/off, so I might just use some cut foam too.