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Help with my old warped L1500, please!

Discussion in 'G&L Bass Forum' started by JETkoten, Mar 25, 2009.

  1. JETkoten


    Mar 25, 2009
    My dad gave me a nice, older L1500 a few years back. At the time I wasn't even into bass, but after a while I started figuring out some songs and really enjoyed it.

    Stopped playing for a while, and then started again and broke a string and stopped again... time passed and I'm interested again, but this time I'd like to see if I can fix up this old L1500.

    Don't know how it happened, it's been like this since I got it, but the neck is way warped... It practically looks like 'U' in side view :) The strings are way off the fretboard in the middle of the neck.

    I went into a music shop tonight to get some strings and tried a fretless for the first time and really liked it too. Also, I'm thinking a 5 string would be definitely be more up my alley to get those really low notes (tried one of those too). A couple of questions for the forum:

    1) Is it feasible to convert it from 4 string to 5 string with a new neck? I guess I'd need a new bridge too? Anything else I'd need if this is doable somehow? If so, would the 4 to 5 string conversion leave visible signs like empty drilled holes or anything?

    2) How can I fix this bass? Can I send it to G&L for them to modify/fix up? Either adding a 4 or 5 string neck (fretless or not)/bridge... and I think it needs a once over to check the electronics and stuff as I think there's some noise in one of the pots when I play it plugged in with the amp. If G&L wouldn't do it, will they sell me a neck/bridge/parts and then I could take it to a luthier for the install/fix up?

    Last thing, I'm not 100% sure it even is a L1500, but that's what it looks like to me. How can I tell for sure? I'm still pretty new to bass playing so I will be very grateful for your replies! Thanks
  2. It's possible, but the body would have to be routed for a 5 string bridge. A conversion like this would be very spendy.

    You should probably start by having a luthier take a look and see what can be done. G&L will sell you pretty much everything to do it yourself but the neck. If you send the bass to them, they'll repair it (at great expense) but it'll still be a 4 string.

    If you want to play a 5 string, you should probably get one that suits you rather than repair/modify this one. You'd be dollars ahead.

    Pics would be helpful.

  3. JETkoten


    Mar 25, 2009
    Thanks a lot for your help. $$$s are tight right now, so I was hoping to find an affordable solution. Even to keep it a 4 string, G&L wouldn't sell me a new fretless or reg neck?

    I can't find my camera battery charger so pics are impossible at the moment. I had a closer look at the bass though, which I hadn't before writing last time, and I can see now it is an L1000.

    The strings are not as far off the fretboard as I had remembered, but the truss rod is bulging causing a crack running about 3/4 of the first fret from the tuner side downwards.

    G&L doesn't sell new necks... at all?

    So, it's basically a write off then? I'm going to keep it at least for sentimental value since it was a gift from my dad... but I was hoping I could get it into better shape to actually play. Please advise.
  4. No, sorry. They do not sell necks outright. They only replace and only they do it.

    The L-1000 is a monster bass. While I don't think I'd pay huge dollars to have it fixed by G&L, I would certainly look into having a luthier quote you for a repair or local replacement.

    Not as an aftermarket thing. People have been begging them to do it for years, but they have no real interest (or manufacturing capacity) to do so.

    Perhaps a write-off as a player, but not as something from your dad. If dollars are tight, just hang onto it as a closet queen until your get the bucks together for a repair. Below is repair contact info for G&L.

    G&L Support

  5. Nedmundo

    Nedmundo Supporting Member

    Jan 7, 2005
    I think if the bass is otherwise in great shape, you shouldn't write it off at all. Just wait until you have the cash, then a neck replacement might be worth it. They're expensive -- I seem to recall a TB'er mentioning $400 -- but that's a lot less then buying another L-1000. In fact, if your new neck receives the Plek computerized fret levelling at the factory, you'll have an amazing player. It is a pain, because G&L forces you to ship it to the factory, but you'll have a killer bass for the long haul.

    If, however, the bass has lots of other problems and will cost substantially more to repair into playing condition, it might not be worth it.

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