fretless bass question

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by LiquidMidnight, Jun 28, 2002.

  1. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    Are there any production line (i.e. Fender/Washburn/Gibson ect.) companies out there making UNlined fretless basses?

    My dad's been wanting a fretless but it's hard finding a non custom company that has unlined fretless's.
  2. warwick does. i too am frustrated by the lack of unlined fretlesses.

    edit: oh yeah, so does Ernie Ball.
  3. My Cort Artisan B4 fretless is unlined and an INCREDIBLE bass for the price (got mine for $600). I would have easily paid double if they asked.
  4. superphat


    Sep 30, 2001
    i was just about to say the cort bass was the only unlined fretless i had ever seen in a music store.
    tried it out once, played real nice.
    don't know if i'd pay 600 for it, but that's just me.
    how about getting a fender jazz and tracking down an unlined replacement neck?
  5. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    Zon makes unlined fretlesses. So does Carvin.
  6. snyderz


    Aug 20, 2000
    AZ mountains
    Japanese Fender Jazz are unlined, and a nice bass. Lots of older basses make unlined, ie Gibson Rippers, Guild, 70's Fenders, and Rickenbackers. Newer basses such as Warwick, Stingrays, and Laklands make unlined, and even some Pedullas. Check 'fretless' on ebay and there are plenty.
  7. Dont forget Aria. Steve Bailey swears by his unlined fretless 6 (with special Basslines by Seymour Duncan pickups). I have played the 5-string member of this family in a music store, but also spied an unlined Washburn XB100 (base model: P pickup & neck profile on J body) for $200.
  8. jbay


    May 23, 2002
  9. Brooks


    Apr 4, 2000
    Middle East
    There are 3-4 companies making unlined fretless necks for Jazz/Precision. If you are interested, I can post URLs.
  10. jankjo


    May 22, 2002
    I saw an unlined fretless warwick streamer stage 2 at a store in Toronto a couple of weeks ago.
  11. jankjo


    May 22, 2002
    By the way, is there any reason other than appearance to want an unlined fretless?
  12. HeavyDuty

    HeavyDuty Supporting Curmudgeon Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 26, 2000
    Suburban Chicago, IL
    Unlined fretless Sterlings are so nice I have a hard time playing them sitting down, if you know what I mean... :eek:
  13. Wicca


    Oct 13, 2001
    Don't forget G&L, they also make unlined fretless.
  14. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    Yeah, so you don't look like a freakin' amatuer who needs lines on his fretless to play. :p

    Thanks for all the suggestion guys. I showed my dad the Warwick fretless Jack Bruce model but I don't think he's real interested in that. I'm thinking that a Carvin is the way to go. Does anyone have any idea if Carvin still has any of those fret/fretless double necks they made back in the day?
  15. I have a fretless Japanese Jazz that is unlined. It can be a little noisy but, other than that, it's a great bass.

    I would also be curious why the bass has to be unlined.

    My main fretless bass nowadays, a Lakland 55-94, is lined and it really doesn't have a huge impact either way for me. It is nice when your in a situation where you can't hear yourself that well but, typically, I try not to look at the fretboard a lot anyway. I like to go on feel and what I'm hearing. I do look at the fretboard occasionally-- when I'm doing a major fret position change or just to make sure I'm not hearing things: "Boy, I thought I was in tune but I'm at least a semi-tone off. What's going on!" :p

    Anyway, I guess what I'm saying is that I wouldn't settle for a bass just because the board was unlined. Get the best fretless bass you can, for the money, whether it's lined or unlined.
  16. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
    You have many good points Bassin', but still, I hate to see a fretless bass with lines. I don't look down on players who use them or anything, but I just would never play one. (My fretless SR is unlined) I mean, maybe it's a dumb argument, but DB'ers don't have lines on their basses. (Of course, they don't have dots on the top of their necks either :D ) I just think it's more professional to play a lined fretless. It's like being 16 years old and still riding a bike with training wheels on it or something. Of course, that's just my opinion.

    My dad feels the same way, and that's why he wants an unlined fretless also.
  17. Cort Curbows are nice fretlesses with no lines. I would buy one, but i NEED lines!
  18. My MIM J fretless has lines, which means the side dots are between the fretlines. I habitually finger "to the dots" like I do on my fretted basses, so this causes me confusion.

    Unlined necks have the side dots directly on the fret positions. No confusion. And it looks cool, if you care about that sort of stuff.
  19. Skorzen


    Mar 15, 2002
    Springfield MA
    There is a used Japanese Fender Jazz on the bass central site for $250. Looks like a good deal for those interested.
  20. hujo


    Apr 18, 2001
    Stockholm, Sweden
    I thought there were unlined Fenders? I know I played an unlined Precision i found in a locker at the musicschool once. Don't know if it was Japanese or Mexican or something else.