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For your amusement...

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by teej, Apr 7, 2005.

  1. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    I don't know if this belongs here, but it's kind of a bass (I use that name VERY loosely) I made. :smug:

    I was tinkering around with a piezo pickup I made (the kind of piezo you get at Radio Shack) and found a rubber band, and though "I wonder..."

    So here it is... my 1-string, rubber band-on-a-stick bass.

    Let me clarify that this is NOT a serious project or anything. I was just curious to see what a rubber band would sound like through the homemade pickup, a Korg PX2, and my Firebass 700. :bassist:

    Bypassing the effects from the PX2, the tone is different than anything i've ever heard before. I was hoping for something quasi-upright, and I came close. It's very low, but still twangy. I think if I tighten the rubber band a little if should fix that. If you guys REALLY want them, I'll post some sound clips. :rolleyes:

    A full shot...

    The bridge (an L-bracket) and the pickup (the black thing)...
  2. Jaco may have only needed four strings, but Teej only needs one rubber band !

  3. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    That makes me sound better than Jaco, which I'm not. I should note that in my post, when I said "twangy," I meant that the string... er... band rattles a bit. Also, I started thinking... The first Ashbory bass was an old floor board, some screws (I believe), some rubber bands, and a transducer!! Who knows, maybe I've got something here. :rolleyes:
  4. Cerb


    Sep 27, 2004
    Strangely enough, I would love to here sound clips, as I was actually thinking about experimenting with something of the sort o_O.
  5. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    Really?! I'll have them posted ASAP. Also, I found some big 24" silicon o-rings (my dad's in the pool business). I may switch the rubberband with one of them. And the way I have it set up right now, the entire "string" is about an inch off the "fingerboard," so it's nearly impossible to play, but I did have some "Louie, Louie" going at one point.
  6. yeah, silicone o rings is what ashbory used for strings in the begining. should really get you that big upright sound. The problem is that transducers sound too bright and lack any body (bottom), so you will need an active preamp on such instrument.

    it's great seeing this experiment. I am about to start building my own pickups and am in the process of constructing my winding machine. Not to waste much wire I wanted to build a 1 or 2 string bass and put my 1-2 string bass pickup in there. I'll post details in a couple of months.
  7. I was just trying to make fun of the whole multistring discussion thingie, that's all ... :)
  8. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    Not necessarily true. With enough patience and the right placement a piezo pickup can have just as much bass and body as any good set of mags. In fact I had to adjust the piezo's on my last EUB because I was getting too much bottom. An active pre is a good idea just for the reasons of Impedance matching though. That Eub has an active pre w/no controls, it only acts as a buffer. Just don't get frustrated when you have been adjusting the transducer for 3 hours and still haven't got a good sound. You will find it eventually. The key is to have even pressure, and I find that the more pressure = more bass. (at least up to a certain point) You can also experiment with placing soft materials between the bass and the pickup, like thin strips of cork or rubber, this can vary the tone drastically.
  9. 5thString


    May 5, 2004
    Hey! I DO want the sound clips!! Really!

  10. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    I mounted the pickup with double-sided foam tape and mounted it directly to the "bridge." I still get a really trebley sound, even with the treble and mid turned all the way down. I believe it's the rubber band. I'll try with the o-rings put on, but before I do, I'll record a few sound clips.
  12. lowphatbass

    lowphatbass ****

    Feb 25, 2005
    west coast
    Consider yourself an EWTB pioneer!!

    EWTB=Electric Wash Tub Bass

    Sound Clips Mandatory!!!
  13. WalterBush


    Feb 27, 2005
    Yuma, Az
    Full disclosure, I'm a certified Fender technician working in a music store that carries Fender, Yamaha, and Ibanez products among others.
    The thing that scares me is that I've now checked this thread about 5 times, and I keep hoping to see soundclips...

    My DB pickup is a Radio Shack piezo job, and if a rubber band and some wood sounds bigger and better than my upright I'll be pissed off and complaining the whole way to the hardware store ;) .
  14. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN

    I have never had success mounting transducers on the bridge. I always put mine underneath. The increased pressure will bring out the body of the sound.

    Wow, I just realized that I am putting time and effort into making a rubber band on a stick sound good. :help:
  15. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    I wasn't expecting this kind of a response from everyone! I'm touched.... deeply. As gratitude, here's a clip.

    About the clip... I plucked the string at frets 5, 7, 9, 12, 15, 17, 19, wide open (only the band hit my finger making it rattle, so I did it again. You may have to turn the volume up... way up since I ran directly into the computer, instead of through an amp.

    And don't worry jabberwock... I don't think my ERBOAS (electric rubberband on a stick) sounds anywhere near as good as your EUB. ;)

  16. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN
    Very Nice! You should put one on e-bay and see what happens!
  17. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Or could it be Rubbermaid?? :confused:
  18. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
    Are you calling me a woman? :eyebrow:

    Nah, I kid.

    But more to the point, on a p-bass, where should I put the piezo for maximum upright-like tone? Also, if I took off the black plastic shell and stuck the actual piezo under the bridge without doing any body modification, would the bridge damage the piezo (i.e. crush it)?
  19. teej


    Aug 19, 2004
    Sheffield, AL 35660
  20. the bridge WILL damage the piezo. what you can do is drill a relief hole with a forstner bit and attach the piezo to the actual bridge there.

    The best way to get an upright sound would be like leduc used to do, a piezo on a bridge attached to a floating sound board! but since we don't have that on your instrument, I guess attaching it to the bridge should sound ok, also, a wooden bridge would help on that upright sound.