1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)

help for warmoth project

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by panazza, Oct 9, 2004.

  1. panazza


    Nov 23, 2003
    hi anyone...

    I am seriously thinking about building a warmoth j bass...now I need some advice...

    1)have you got any photos of your warmoth basses? I need some good ideas to start my project...

    2)I need a dark sounding bass cause I mostly use a pick and I don't want my sound to be too clear - what woods should I use? Even if I like a dark sound I also love the look of swamp ash... but that's not a dark sounding wood...

    I am also considering walnut and mahogany...or korina... but how would they pair with a maple/rosewood or maple/maple neck? (talking about sound)

    3)I need a heavy body cause I hate neck diving

    4)finish... I saw some unfinished basses, such as '80s warwicks...but..are they really unfinished or is there some kind of oil or what on the body?? someone told me unpainted bodies have a better sound, and leaving the body unpainted will make me save money and have a cooler bass... If it needs to have some kind of finish, could I easily apply it with a brush or I'd better spend some money and have it finished??

    5)I am also thinking of buying a swamp ash body for my mexican jazz bass...the problem is my E string sounds a bit less than other strings... do you think changing the body will help or it's something you can't plan before trying the finished bass??

    6)and one silly question... what about the look of an ash (natural) body paired with a maple/rosewood neck? I have never seen such a bass, so I can't figure how it will look...if you have a pic of a bass like that....

  2. Jackbass


    Dec 19, 2003
    Paris (FRANCE)
    Hi bass friend,

    Take a look to my warmoth project, it s also a Jazzbass, and this is the most versatile and the finest jazzbass I know.



    The electronic parts are very impressive because I can obtain vintage flat Jaco sound and Modern brighty tone.
    I have compared to FMT jazzbass and I am very happy to have this bass.
    The comparison to sadowsky basses is also interesting, because there is no quality difference in the sound. The sadowsky is clearer by nature.
  3. PasdaBeer


    Nov 2, 2002
    Santa Rosa California
    SandStorm Designs
    a lot of the sound depends on the pups.....

    if you want deep, go with some nice vintage single coils...
  4. Jazzbassman23


    Apr 20, 2000
    I know many will disagree, but I think you're overestimating the importance of body wood to the overall sound. You don't need a heavy body to prevent neck dive. I've got a swamp ash P/Body paired with a J/rosewood neck. The headstock is cut 2+2, there is absolutely no neck dive, and it weighs well under 10 lbs. The problem with Warmoth instruments, and why so many people end up disappointed, is that you really don't know what you have until it's assembled. Money wasn't an object for me when I built mine; it was a toy. If money is an object for you, I suggest buying an off-the-shelf bass that you can play and know what it's going to sound like.
  5. Jackbass


    Dec 19, 2003
    Paris (FRANCE)
    You are right!!!
  6. iualum


    Apr 9, 2004
    You might also take a look a Nino Valenti's site, www.valentibasses.com , to see additional Warmoths for ideas. Nino builds Warmoth basses. He's doing one for me now.

    If a big part of your project is for the experience of building an instrument, then that's super. If it isn't, however, you might want to consider having Nino build you a Valenti. It was a great choice for me.
  7. Andy Brown

    Andy Brown Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 23, 2004
    Rhode Island
    Founder/Owner: Wing Instruments
    Here's my first Warmoth project... quilted maple Jazz on white korina. The neck is wenge with an ebony fingerboard. I chose EMG's because I had some doing nothing. The action is incredible, and the sound is warm but punchy. I'm not getting the traditional Jazz sound, but I didn't expect that. I'm entirely satisfied with the way this project turned out.

    For my next one, I'm probably going to spec it out and having Nino build it for me. He's got a great rep for wiring, assembly, and setup, and would save me from burning myself with the soldering iron.

    Good luck either way you go.


  8. wingnutkj


    Mar 27, 2003
    Hi Panazza,
    this is my Warmoth Jazz - it's alder with a figured oak top, Moses graphite neck, Badass II bridge, Bill Lawrence pickups and the traditional passive VVT control set up with the addition of a series/parallel switch:

    It's quite bright, but if I switch the pickups to series mode and turn down the tone, I can get a good thud as well. I'm no expert and can't really tell you much about how neck & body woods affect tone. I wanted a graphite neck bass for gigging with, and wanted to try my hand at building a Jazz, so when I saw a body I liked the look of in the thrift shop, I went for it. It turned out really good, to my relief!

    I wouldn't advise leaving the bass unfinished unless the wood is really tough. Warwicks and other "natural" finish basses will usually have an oil finish, rather than bare wood. I think the comments about unpainted instruments sounding better are probably more relevant for acoustic instruments than basses, and only if you had a really thick polyurethane finish would there be a noticable difference.

    I did the finishing of my bass myself, using a tung oil based product called Liberon Finishing Oil (there are other tung oil based finishes available, and plenty of advice on the internet). I also used a wood stain to get a more amber tint, before applying the oil. I applied about 9 coats of the oil using a cloth, sanding between coats. It's really easy to apply and can give a very good finish. I took about a week last summer, applying a coat in the morning, and another in the evening. It turned out pretty good, although there are a few bits of dust where I could have maybe done a better job of sanding between coats, and an area that isn't as glossy as the rest, for some reason. I've been playing it for just over a year now, and I'm thinking about applying another couple of coats soon, just to refresh it.

    I got a local luthier to drill and fit the neck and cut the nut for me, because I didn't feel confident enough to do it myself. Did everything else myself though, which felt very satisfying!
  9. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
  10. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    I agree with this in most cases. However, if you're using an above average weight neck (i.e. wenge neck) you do need to consider the weight of the body wood to maintain a good balanced instrument.

    I agree totally! But I will say that there's nothing quite like the satisfaction of being able to say: "This is one I built"! Some will certainly argue that "it's just a kit" but if you sand, drill and route, apply the finish, wire, cut the nut and do the set-up, you built it! ;)
  11. BassGreaser


    Aug 22, 2002
    Austin, TX
    i'll post my 59' warmoth Pbass soon! it's 99% done just have to wire up the Aero pup:D
  12. boo


    Oct 12, 2002
    Why Warmoth if there is USA Custom Guitars ??????? :D :D



    Another USA CG ( not mine :bawl: )


  13. notabob


    Sep 20, 2003
    cincinnati ohio
    absolutely stunning!! about how much did that set you back? ive been thinking about doing a warmoth myself, just aint got the funds together quite yet.
  14. JOME77

    JOME77 Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2002
    Thanks! I've got approx. $1,200 in the bass (including case). I could have done it cheaper but unfortunately the Demeter pre and Barts weren't cheap! The electronics accounted for close to $400 of the price. Even though I'd never get my money back out of it, IMO it was worth it. It holds its own against my Roscoe's and Elrick! Very warm and phat tone!
  15. I did a Warmoth P bass. I did a pretty terrible job with it. But I did it all myself. I will try to get a picture up later, but the finish is pretty awful, the neck is vintage like - yellow tinted. I added a pickup cover and a bridge cover. I drilled the neck myself and like everything on the bass it is slightly off. The funny thing about this bass though is that it sounds wonderful and is a dream to play. The little errors here and there make it unusual and fun. It almost looks like a relic bass. In any case, I am thinking of doing another because I had so much fun doing this one.

    The only thing I didn't do myself is I had a luthier look at it and set it up for me. He told me that it set up real nicely.
  16. This is my Warmoth Jazz with a black korina body, maple neck and an ebony fretboard. I'm extremely happy with how it turned out in all aspects. I tung oiled the body and put wipe on satin polyurethane on the neck. The sound is very clean and clear, the way I like it, but I can change that simply by turning down the treble control.

    I've got a wave file if you want me to send it to you. I hope you have high speed internet though, I haven't figured out how to convert it to MP3 yet.
  17. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses

    I'd recomend dark sounding pickups Bartolini's or BassLines ASB's come to mind.

    IME, Warmoth basses tend to end up at about 10 1/2 lbs

    Personally, I like to have the body profesionally finished. If the unprofessional finish isn't done correctly, it can meke an expensive bass look cheap. :(

    I'd look into having the bass set up with a new set of strings. It might be an easy fix, like the E string you have on it is bad or the pickup height on the bass side is too low, or the E string height it too high.

  18. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Hehehe, Nino's got an answer to everything. I love 'em all, but are those last three before the ash/rosewood one new? I definitely haven't seen 'em before, and I'm a bonafied Valenti-nut. The only thing that could validate my nuttiness more is owning one! :crying: When I was reading the thread, I wondered if you'd put your name on one that's built from Gecko parts (eg, very much hoping you would) so I could proudly show off a nice Valenti 6'er in the (distant) future. Unfortunately, it looks like the headstock on the Gecko-style fiver is bare, c'ept for that beautiful blue finish. Have you ever tried putting your name on the truss rod cover?
  19. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    They're old & sold.

    If you loof at the neck heel, you'll see a Warmoth decal.


    I'm not really sure if I can legally put the "Valenti" name on a Gecko. I'd have to ask the powers that be.
  20. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!