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Fretless Ibanez BTB?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jimmyb, Aug 13, 2005.


  1. jimmyb

    jimmyb An Avid Indoorsman Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2003
    Elkton, MD
    Does anyone know if Ibanez ever produced a fretless version of any of the BTB models? Year/model and any other info would help
    Thanx
    JB
     
  2. jimmyb

    jimmyb An Avid Indoorsman Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2003
    Elkton, MD
    WOW!
    Nothing?
    Anyone?

    :confused:
     
  3. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    Not to my knowledge. I did alot of research on them before I bought mine four years ago. I never saw a fretless one in a store, or on the website. I wanted a fretless one, so I bought a fretted and took it to a luthier to have the frets removed.

    -Mike
     
  4. Fretless5verfan

    Fretless5verfan Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2002
    Philadelphia
    I actually got the chance to play two fretless BTBs in my local store that didn't appear to be de-fretted. If they were whoever did it did a remarkable job. They were pretty cool basses, but didn't jump out at me.
     
  5. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    You may be able to get one custom made direct from Ibanez. I *think* I saw one on Ebay a long time ago. I know I've seen a ton of fretless Ibanez Soundgears and to my knowledge Ibanez never auctually offered them as a model you could order stock. I'd check with your local dealer.

    Either that or get one and have it professionally defretted.
     
  6. Maurice Carr

    Maurice Carr

    Aug 7, 2004
    Mt Wellington, Auckland, NZ
    Authorised BFM and fEARful cab builder: New Zealand
    No, they are not available as a standard production model however you could possibly get one by special order.

    I actually have a BTB405QM which I made into fretless. Rather than just pull the frets and bog the grooves up, the luthier put on a new Ebony fingerboard - the whole job cost $NZ300 ( about $US 225 ). He used a very hard white wood fret markers ( I was too chicken to go completely unmarked!! ) and the result was excellent. :cool:

    I will change the pups soon for some barts, or perhaps a basslines for the bridge and bart for the neck.

    If you really have your heart set on a BTB as a fretless ( 35" scale makes for tight sound and feel for thisprice range ) then try and get a second hand one at a good price and do what I did.

    I'm very pleased with the result, not like the SR I made fretless. There I chose the wrong luthier and the result was a dog of a bass - I changed it back to fretted recently.

    If you need to know more, I'm happy to help.

    Mo
     
  7. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    If it's not on the website they don't make it. They don't do special orders or custom instruments for anyone other than select, very important artists.
     
  8. Speaking of Ibanez basses, isn't there a lower priced GW bass in their arsonal? If so, you could give that one a go, it's already fretless, with markers too. Only thing is, that you'de better be looking for a 5 string, I think that's all they come in.


    ~Ryan
     
  9. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Terrific Twister

    Apr 12, 2001
    Lacey, WA
    Hmmm.....nope.

    It was really nice though when I got it back from the luthier. It looked like it came from Ibanez that way. Nice and smooth fretboard, and that bass sounded so awesome for playing jazz. I put some TI Flats on it. She sounded just like butter. Of course, I was too smart for my own good and decided to join a hard rock cover band. I sold it to get a bass better suited to that style.

    -Mike
     
  10. fourstringdrums

    fourstringdrums Decidedly Indecisive Supporting Member

    Oct 20, 2002
    San Antonio
    Really. As I said, I've seen some fretless soundgear's that pop up every once in a while, unlined usually. I wonder where those came from.

    I actually did see a fretless EDB or one of those funny looking single pickup models on MF a few years ago.
     
  11. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Those were production models, but only for a limited time. I almost bought a SR400FL but they're few and far beween.
     
  12. 'JC'

    'JC'

    Mar 14, 2000

    I saw someone with a 5 string Soundgear at the TX GTG who had a custom shop logo (appeared to be abalone or mother of pearl) in the bottom fret. I forgot the series but, his appeared to be custom.


    As for fretless Ibanez basses, the only one they make fretless from the factory is the Gary Willis model.


    Here's one of Juneaus pics of that Ibanez I edited for lighting purposes:
    [​IMG]
     
  13. Maurice Carr

    Maurice Carr

    Aug 7, 2004
    Mt Wellington, Auckland, NZ
    Authorised BFM and fEARful cab builder: New Zealand
    Mine's an ebony fingerboard but lined with slithers of white hardwood - interested in these pics?

    Mo
     
  14. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    Apart from the SR400, Gary Willis model and EDAs, I believe the only production fretless (and IMO, highest end they offered) Ibanez made recently was the SR-1205FL around 1995/6. You can find them usually in transparent teal on the 'bay from time-to-time.

    There are also import models that have made their way into the States either by single orders or some dealers that make bulk purchases (much more on the gu*tar play side.) IMO, that's where some of the alternate colors and variations on models come from. That, and that Ibanez will change specs mid production run and not change website or spec sheet info, and also do limited runs for the larger chains... :rollno:


    The 22/24th "Custom" inlay was Ibanez's method of differentiating their higher-end models back in the days, akin to their current "Prestige" models. It simply means there was extra attention to detail on the neck/fretwork and another pass on QC. As has been posted, they simply don't do custom work for non-endorsees or artists they're "courting" and haven't since their quasi-"custom shop" (again, much more guitar oriented and Carvin-like in that you could choose from a set list of woods, finished, electronics, etc.) closed in the mid-90's.
     
  15. Maurice Carr

    Maurice Carr

    Aug 7, 2004
    Mt Wellington, Auckland, NZ
    Authorised BFM and fEARful cab builder: New Zealand
    Here ya go - poor lighting plus black is hard to photograph

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Mo
     
  16. I played some model of BTB at a Music go Round.

    All I know about it was that it was a 5 string with the monorail bridge

    It was alright, but nothing was particularly amazing about it.

    Not that my opinion matters.


    They do exist though