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Hamer style 12 string bass questions

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Builda ba5s, Aug 27, 2012.

  1. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    Are the machine heads a mix of guitar tuners and bass or are they a specialised type? How many frets? Could I convert an 8 string nut/bridge into a 12 string? Or a 6 string? Thanks I'll post other questions if I think of any :D
  2. lsimy

    lsimy Supporting Member

    Apr 18, 2003
    Virginia, USA
    That's quite a list of questions there ! :)

    Depending on the space available on the headstock, they are usually a mix of guitar and bass tuners (i.e. 4 bass size, 8 guitar size).

    I have a 5 string neck being converted into a 12 as we speak. The tuners will be set up as above. The bridge comes from a Schaller 8-string bass bridge ordered from Warmoth. One of the saddles on each set of strings will be grooved for 2 guitar strings. The other saddle for the bass string.

    Same frets as any 4 or 5 string of choice with a 34" scale.
  3. smcd


    Jun 28, 2009
    Boston, MA
    21 frets on the long scale version. You can't convert an 8 string nut into a 12 string on that bass.
  4. Converting an 8-string to a 12?
    I'd quite honestly get a 12, as the problems of matching up 12 stepped tuners, plus what it would do to the neck tension (an 8 has more chance than a 4-string). I have two Hamer 12's. Pics below.

    You do need the tuners to match, otherwise it will look daft.

    Similarly, the bridge needs to be a 12er bridge. Mucking about with an 8 to make it accomodate 12 strings would be well-nigh impossible.

    You can probably pick up a Chapparal at a reasonable price.

    Another option would be looking out for a Dean Rhapsody 12 (never played one, but I have a DR 8 which is fantastic).


    For more ideas, go to http://www.12stringbass.net/
  5. coronado3

    coronado3 Supporting Member

    Jun 29, 2008
    Indiana, USA
    the dean 8 is quite nice... Love mine. Didn't like their 12 - It felt huge!
  6. I never thought about this before but looking at that Hamer 12 (Hello Doug Pinnick and Tom Petersson), can you play those w/your fingers or do you really need to use a pick based on the spread of trio of strings?
  7. Demon_Hunter


    Jun 8, 2008
  8. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    What sort of truss rod is in the neck? Is it double truss rod?
  9. Both my Hamers have 2 truss rods (I think).

    To answer the question about picks or fingers.... it sounds best with a pick if you want clarity and attack. If you're doing something bluesy (and slower) fingers is just a huge blended sound with all the range but very subtle.

    The white Hamer on EBay is a steal. If it was in the UK, I'd have it.
  10. 66Atlas


    May 19, 2012
    I have a B12A and lolve it. IIRC all but the earliest Hamer 12ver's are dual truss rods, the earliest ones had bowing problems.
  11. brad houser

    brad houser

    Jan 4, 2008
    Tony Senatore uses his fingers, swears by it
  12. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    How would I install a double truss rod? Is it just 2 truss rods side by side? And I'm in the uk to :( an I don't have that sorta money either
  13. curbowkid

    curbowkid Guest

    Jun 27, 2011
    Brooklyn, New York
    Pop off the finger board and modify the truss rod cavity for 2. not easy.
  14. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    Can anyone give me a more detailed and helpful how to please
  15. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    I don't think anyone but a luthier would be able to provide that info, and it would vary from bass to bass.
  16. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    Ok so just routing an extra wide cavity wouldnt work then?
  17. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains

    Are you familiar with building a bass from scratch?
  18. Builda ba5s

    Builda ba5s

    Aug 5, 2012
    Yes I am but not a double rod neck
  19. Dave W

    Dave W Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2007
    White Plains
    I believe it's essentially just 2 completely separate truss rods.

    Converting a single rod neck to a double rod neck probably isn't the best idea. You'd need to fill in the rod channel in the center of the neck (which wouldn't be as strong as a piece of solid wood) then route two channels to install the new rods.

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