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Grrr! My bass smells like smoke!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by secretdonkey, Feb 3, 2004.

  1. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I've been gigging more lately, and I noticed today that my bass (Cirrus) smells like cigarette smoke. I'm trying to decide if it's the strings or the unfinished neck/fingerboard that's the main part holding the smell. My fingers smell like smoke after playing it, so I'm hoping it's mainly in the strings. Anyone else encounter this?

  2. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    oh, yeah - go smell your cab! mine stinks like funk!

    Donk, dunk your strings in some denatured alcohol over night..that'll learn them! :D
  3. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    Don't play so damn fast!!!! :D
  4. Electricmayhem


    Dec 18, 2003

    That's just gross!
  5. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    That's why I have gigging basses and stay-at-home basses... :bassist:
  6. metron


    Sep 12, 2003
    Ive had this happen. I think its mostly in the strings. Wipe the bass off real good and that helps a little.
  7. Chasarms

    Chasarms Casual Observer Supporting Member

    May 24, 2001
    Saint Louis, MO USA
    Having smoked for 15 years, I quite three years ago. Starting about six months after quitting, I started becoming hypersensitive to cigarette smoke. You can't imagine the embarrassment when I realized how bad I once smelled.

    It seems to collect in everything. Nearly anything will hold the odor, but it seems more likely that the pores in the wood would hold the odor moreso than the metal strings.

    Who knows. Just let it sit out of the case in a well vented area and it will go away in a few days.
  8. Ok, first of all, I love you all dearly.

    But I just gotta say something here.

    Saying: My bass smells like smoke :mad:

    ... is like saying The tires on my Ferarri smell like pavement :mad:

    Until your state becomes 'non-smoking indoors' and pavement is made of fresh-baked bread, please just appreciate the fact that we're playing music and driving Ferarris.

    Ok, we don't have a Ferarri but we have an old Pathfinder and we're damn appreciative. :D
  9. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Point taken, Bimpy! :D

    But, hey, it's not like I said "I'm gonna call my congressman, dammit!" or anything. It was just an innocent observation.

    Coincidentally, I've got a stack of racing tires sitting a few feet away from me right now. Sticky rubber smells goooood (much better than cigarette smoke!)

  10. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    Mine smell like sweat because I made a point not to clean them, not laziness, more for good luck than anything. I dunno, if anything I'd just be glad to be gigging.

    OTOH, at least you have the tires right by you.
  11. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    I had a problem with my Rick smelling funky. I thought it was from gigs, but it turned out to be from odors that settled into that fuzzy fabric on the inside of the case. That fabric doesn't like to be cleaned, but you can do it. Try placing some sort of deodorizer in your case. On the other hand, don't let your cat have free access to an open case. Or, simply move to California where smokers are always on the outside of the venue.

  12. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    I play usually two to three nights a week, and my stuff WREAKS of smoke. I keep the cabs in the garage, I wear a "special" coat that I keep hanging in the garage so my other coats don't stink of smoke. I have to throw my clothing in the wash the minute I walk in the door when I come home. The basses, fuggedaboutit. If I know I want to use them indoors the next day, I open their cases either in the garage or the basement, depending on how cold it is outside. The basses usually 'recover' after a day or two, but the cases are a lost cause.

    No complaints, as I realize the realities of gigging. I just have to take a few extra steps since I don't like the smell. :meh:
  13. Slater

    Slater Leave that thing alone. Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2000
    The Great Lakes State
    I have a "special" gigging coat as well. It's pretty beat-up, and my bandmates have said, "You need a new coat.", and I've replied, "This coat is just fine for soaking up cigarette smoke." ;)
  14. ivanthetrble


    Sep 9, 2002
    Bass, schmass. You wanna smell funk pop the back off my rack! It is enough to clear a room. :meh:
  15. Let's invent some cute little sweaters for our basses to wear to the icky old bar. So after a gig we can toss the cute little sweaters into the washing machine and wash the eeeeeewwwy stinky smoke smell away. We could even get together and knit sweaters!!! OOooohhhh I like plaid.



    j/k, all my gear smells horrid too. :spit: :)
  16. Passinwind

    Passinwind I know nothing. Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    Nah, just throw your bass and rig in the washer. Keep 'em with the whites though, plaid'll bleed.

    Until your state becomes 'non-smoking indoors' and pavement is made of fresh-baked bread, please just appreciate the fact that we're playing music and driving Ferraris.

    Plenty of places in WA are nonsmoking now, regardless of state statutes. I haven't played a gig in a smoking club in several years, in either WA or OR (which does have a statute, but not for bars). Just means I have to spill more beer on everything to make up for it.

    Which Ferrari do you prefer for gigging? I can only fit one 4X10 in the Daytona, and the URB has to go on the roof.

  17. tis ur strings....and a covering of smokers air on ur bass....i have it lots of times...

    get sum lem oil and give ur bass a nice clean do the world of good.....

    get some soapy water...put a cloth in it...squeeezeee it out so just damp slacken stings. off and wipe them a lil....and dry them with kitchen towel..


    tho...who cares :p
  18. My MIM Fender Deluxe V smelled like smoke when I bought it used, but it has since worn off (and I gig pretty regularly as well). I'm not sure what held the smell.
  19. TxBass


    Jul 3, 2002
    Frisco, Texas
    I loaned my acoustic guitar out to the drummer in my band a while back....and some of his stuff got sprayed by a skunk---my guitar happened to be in the area. So...now I have a lovely smelling guitar! Changing the strings helped some---but it's forever "changed" in a not so nice way.

    but it was a guitar---so it deserved it anyway, right? ;)
  20. Thor

    Thor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Zenbass has got it.

    Ever sit in a smoker's car and see the film on the
    window? It can be cleaned off.

    When you have left all your clothes outside the
    door, coughed up the phlegm, and are done
    scrubbing in the shower, bass bath is next.

    Windex and a clean soft rag. Used but clean
    Joe Nerve underwear is ideal. Apply liberally to all
    surfaces. Wipe gently. Repeat.

    Lemon Pledge or your favorite guitar body wax.
    Buff well. Finger Ease or light oil like sewing machine
    oil depending on your preference for strings. I use
    Finger ease and buff the fretboard by slipping the rag in
    between the strings and fretboard.

    Avoid smoky venues and loose, lascivious women ...

    Yeah, that's gonna happen ...

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