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Is a Thumb Rest a Good Idea?

Discussion in 'Ask David Overthrow' started by DredFetus, Nov 19, 2010.

  1. DredFetus


    Nov 19, 2010
    so ive been resting my thumb on the top pick up but there is a screw on the side (look at the picture) and theres not to much room so i made a thumb rest to sit between the two pick ups.


    i was just wondering if the screw being between the pick ups would it mess them up being metal? and if i drilled it in between them would i hit any wires? also do u think i should install this or just get used to the way it is now, i dont like putting a tiny hole but the bass isn't mint as is.

  2. codycaz


    Oct 8, 2010
    Cape Town, SA
    158,789 Members and no one replied to your question.
    That's bad.Any rate,i won't screw anything on to my axe.You have to do without it and work on your technic.That's what i think.Maybe the other Tb'ers will try to be a bit more helpful and reply to your question.
  3. Dbass10


    Oct 26, 2007
    Not sure that I would use metal for a thumb rest I think it would be easier and less problematic to use wood. It's hard to say if screwing it in would hit any electronics. You would probably have to disassemble a few things to see how the wires are routed. If you aren't sure if it is something you would want to keep you could also try to mount it with some heavy duty double sided tape, though you would have to be careful taking it off since some of that stuff can stick really hard. I don't really see this as a technique issue unless you were trying to go without the thumb rest and use a floating thumb technique...
  4. chaosMK


    May 26, 2005
    Albuquerque, NM
    Too much hip thrust
    Are you sure you need a thumb rest? I find myself resting my thumb on the B string if I'm playing on the rest of the bass.
  5. Wood would (no pun intended) be the better choice for a thumb rest. It does seem like too much trouble when most players would actually either 1) gently rest their thumb on the pickup so the screw would not be a factor or 2) as the gentleman above wrote, rest your thumb on the lowest string (E with a four string, B with a five string) while playing. That is what I do.

    Good luck.
  6. kuuri


    Jun 27, 2011
    I rest my thumb on one ov 3 places... On the pick ups, on the lowest string and on the neck.

    Pick ups spot is self explainitory.

    my playing style grew/evolved to my resting my thumb square on the E string ( owning a 4 string ) then i can easily fly my fingers to the ADG strings and when it comes to the E time I simply lift it off then after put it back on the E. works very well for me :D

    My third way and most interesting imo, is on the neck. This possition is one I resently discovered. If you plant your thumb on the neck then play right at the neck. BUTTT some thing i have discovered me self is the ferther away from the pick ups you play the warmer the tone :) so if you play at the 12th fret it will sould super warm vs a pickup thumb resting. so yeah deffinitly check that out.

    Sorry it my spelling is bad im as tired as hell have not slept in 15 or hours...
    Mihailo and Chad Highfill like this.
  7. 49sfine


    Apr 20, 2008
    Austin, Texas
    Unless you can used to the idea of using the edge of the P-bass p-up as I rest, I don't see why you can't mount something like you show in your photo. A drop of Super Glue will do it and all you are out is the price of another pickguard if you decide to sell the bass and want it back to original. I refinish Wishbasses and I am almost always fabricating and mounting thumbrests, usually out of a matching wood, but these are all being mounted with small hidden dowels into the body wood, not a pickguard. IMO, you do not need to drill at all, so no need to worry about where the wires are routed, although a quick lift off of the pickguard will tell you.
  8. bluedyna


    Dec 4, 2008
    Birmingham, AL
    I have mounted a Fender thumbrest (2 screws) on my Jazz. Screwed it to the pickguard. I usually replace the pickguard and If I want to go back stock, I can just put the old pickguard back on with no thumbrest or holes.
  9. Berger912

    Berger912 Supporting Member

    Mar 26, 2004
    Rockland County, NY
    use double stick tape
  10. Bassamatic

    Bassamatic keepin' the beat since the 60's

    I thought about doing this, and eventually came to the realization that it is better to learn the "floating thumb" technique, where your thumb rests on or against the highest string you are not playing. Might be the B, E or A. This does 2 things - 1. it mutes the upper strings so they don't ring and 2. it keeps your hand position the same at all times.

    Still working on it but it is coming along.
  11. Mayers

    Mayers Guest

    Sep 28, 2007
    This is the best, floating thumb remove any wierd bending and thus diminish carpal tunel problems in the long run. Plus it naturally mute lower strings and your attack is always the same.
  12. pharaohamps

    pharaohamps Commercial User

    May 30, 2006
    Garner, NC
    Owner, Disaster Area Designs / Alexander Pedals
    When I switched from 4-string Stingrays to Stingray 5's, I really missed the little pickup "ears!" The SR4 has the two little mounting ears on the bass side of the pickup that make it a perfect spot to rest your thumb, and the SR5 doesn't have them. On the newest SR5's the pickup housing is even smaller on the bass side and is a poor thumbrest. I started using floating thumb technique almost out of desperation, but it's really grown on me. Even on a narrow-spaced bass like an SR5, reaching up to the A,D,G strings is a wide stretch from the bass side of the pickup. I use the B, E, and A strings as my anchor point, but sometimes I do use the bass side of the pickup if I'm playing the B.

    A thumb rest is a good idea if you like or need a thumb rest. I'd probably avoid drilling holes in a part of the bass that will show if you ever take it off. I always hate seeing old Fenders where the thumb rest is mounted off the pickguard on the body, but that's my taste. It's your bass, play it your way. If that means you put a thumb rest on there, go for it.
  13. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jan 28, 2021

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