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Fretless Precision parts bass, need ideas for it's live use...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by scuzzy, Dec 23, 2016.

  1. scuzzy


    Feb 15, 2006
    Troy, MO
    Please don't say "play it", I would prefer more narrow advice. ;) and I play it in my practice space already.

    I debated posting this, or it's pics. It's not boutique, it's not fancy. It simply is what it is. I bought all these parts used, and cheap, on ebay years and years ago. I did all the wood burning, fashioned it together and it was terrible. Over the years it has gone back into a parts bin, back together, apart again, de-fretted, different pickups installed, re-wired, and just this past week, went through a pretty thorough set-up (Pino's fretless playing inspired). The neck started with lots of relief, and wouldn't adjust out. I used washers on the truss rod nut and remedied that, now it's straight as an arrow with some more adjustment range to go. I trimmed the nut down to accomadate the fretless board. I adjusted the bridges and pickup height, tuned and intonated...and I gotta say, it is sounding pretty slick. I never would have played it out before, but I believe I will now. I typically only play at church now. We do acoustic with cajon, acoustic driven with a drum set, or a 3 piece all electric. I have basses to cover all those, including a fretless "acoustic" that is perfect for cajon acoustic music, particularly when our leader plays mandolin. My question is, where would this bass fit in? Can I be directed towards some inspiration that I may have overlooked? I'm not overly creative when it comes to blazing trails of tone and breaking new ground on varying bass application. I pretty much stick to what is common, and has been used.

    Any ideas? It was my first and only assembly, and is basically worthless to anyone else but me. It is a very sentimental piece though. and......go.

    digmeout, PWRL, bobyoung53 and 5 others like this.


    Feb 10, 2016
    Michigan USA
    Well, it's er, it is what it is. Seriously though i think you could use it just about anywhere, any genre.
    Old Blastard and seang15 like this.
  3. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i think it's neat! although i'd have trouble with lines, i'd play it anywhere, any time, with pride! congrats on putting in the work and time to make it your own! :thumbsup:
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  4. Glasiron


    Jan 15, 2016
    I think that is beautiful! Well done!
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  5. ABass66176

    ABass66176 Commercial User

    Dec 13, 2016
    DelSonix clip on guitar speaker/amplifier
    It looks pretty good. What wood species is the body? Is it Ash? The neck look like Maple?
    I have Fender JB fretless but only practice on it at home. Not enough skills and guts to play live gig.
  6. jaybones

    jaybones Banned

    Mar 4, 2015
    Kelleys Island, Ohio
    Nice job wood burning!! Probably shouldn't wear your rodeo belt buckle or you'll mess up that back rosette...
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    That is crazy cool! Might not use it for metal, but then again I just might. I think it would work for pretty much anything you do.
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  8. scuzzy


    Feb 15, 2006
    Troy, MO
    I'm not really sure. It is a short scale body, almost identical size and shape of my strat. Easily the lightest bass I own. But I don't think it's swamp ash. Certainly too light for maple. It's a glued 2-3 piece body.

    The neck is maple with rosewood. Looks to be possibly an old Yamaha take-off???
  9. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    Electric Mariachi band!!!
    rllefebv and scuzzy like this.
  10. scuzzy


    Feb 15, 2006
    Troy, MO
    Thanks man! What emg pickups would you recommend for a base like that?
  11. REV


    Jun 18, 2006
    Nice work! Glad you've finally got it sounding like you want.
  12. BaileyMan

    BaileyMan Supporting Member

    Jan 8, 2012
    San Francisco
    I think your art work on it is great! Definitely a one of a kind worth keeping.
    bobyoung53 likes this.
  13. Old Blastard

    Old Blastard

    Aug 18, 2013
    Play it anywhere. Just use a fretted if you have to do lead vocals. Don't ask how I know that.
    bobyoung53 and pbass2 like this.
  14. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    Nice work, unique theme.

    You need to play in a Celtic band, as it would match the design.

    Maybe some Irish Death Metal...
  15. wizerd


    Jan 5, 2012
    Prone to ranting, episodes of moral outrage.
    You need a Celtic prog rock forum for this. Something like "Yes" meets "The Pogues." Nice work.
  16. I have a fretless precision bass. (its still weird saying fretless precision.) I threw some geezers in there and it sounds pretty darn good.

    I do play it in a similar acoustic setting at church to what you described. It sounds great there. Its much, much easier than bringing an upright, and has zero feedback issues, which can sometimes happen with my crappy upright.

    I also play it with my band on occasion and even recorded an"acoustic" album with it. Typically we play with punk inspired electric guitar instead of acoustic instruments, and it really does sound great there.

    In other words, it will work anywhere.
  17. DavC

    DavC Supporting Member

    May 17, 2005
    Tallmadge , Ohio
    i would think it would fit best ' in the middle ' group of music ... acoustic driven w/drums ... has that vibe/look to me ... maybe some tapewounds . ?
  18. pbass2


    Jan 25, 2007
    Los Angeles
    Just listen to the late great Boz Burrell with Bad Company! Really tasteful use of a fretless P in a rock setting. Half the time it just sounds like he's playing a fretted P, then he'll throw in some cool little slidey bit. Otherwise, heck, it's a pbass-can be used almost anywhere really if your intonation is good.
  19. He also played an Ampeg fretless scroll bass, never knew he played a fretless Precision.
  20. That is one cool bass, I would play it just about anywhere. Incidentally is it a difficult job to do to add washers to the truss rod? I have a maxed out truss rod in a Jazz bass.some good thread on Talkbass.
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2016

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