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Fret Height, depends on make/model?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Wolzly, Feb 10, 2006.


  1. Wolzly

    Wolzly

    Oct 16, 2005
    Hi, I have a very cheap Peavy Fury 4 P-Bass copy that I bought at a pawn shop ($170 if I remember correctly) and it's a good 'first bass' I think.

    The bass player in my little brother's band plays his fathers old MusicMan Stingray bass and I love it to death, one of the main reasons being that the frets are SO low that there is little to no fret noise no matter what you do on the bass. You can do amazing slides/gliss moves and it sounds smooth as silk.

    I was just wondering if that's a typical MusicMan neck thing and that P-Bass's typically have higher fret-profiles, or if my bass is just so cheap that the fret height is one of the areas it shows?

    Also, would it be worth getting a replacement neck for my bass? It happens to warp upwards (stronger pull on the E-end than on the G-end of the neck?), and the truss-rod is a PAIN to adjust (I think I stripped the nut)... would it be worth putting on a decent neck? I've already replaced the p'ups and strings, so a new neck would pretty much make it a new bass :p
     
  2. klocwerk

    klocwerk

    May 19, 2005
    Somerville, MA
    yes, they vary.
    Older basses tended to have lower frets, these days called "vintage" frets. Then came the era of Jumbo frets, a dark-ages of bass necks in my opinion.

    Some luthiers are now using banjo frets to give that old vintagey feel.
     
  3. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Really fret height shouldn't have anything to do with fret noise or how hard you have to fret...That's more of a set up issue or the overall quality of the neck and how the fretwork was done.
     
  4. Dbassmon

    Dbassmon

    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    Absolutely right skyman. However, you can get the action lower with smaller frets with out buzz. Lots of posts on this. Search keyword "banjo frets". You'll see a lot of players, including myself, beleive these smaller frets give you a woodier sound and smoother feel. Dingwall basses use them and studio bassist, Lee Sklar, is largely credited for bringing this trend into vogue.
     
  5. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY

    You're talking to a Dingwall player.

    I agree that small frets feel great, and that they bring the strings closer to the neck (which helps playability, but technically, it's not 'action' or related to buzz. If the frets are level (ie a level plain down the neck), it doesn't matter what the height of the fret is...flat is flat.