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Just added a Ramp to my Thumb

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mike Flynn, Feb 25, 2005.

  1. Just got my mate Jeff Chapman to add an ebony ramp to my Warwick Thumb NT - and it really works - so good for Matt Garrison style picking - sorry for the slightly crappy pic ;)

  2. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    now, a ramp in the same wood as that gorgeous thumb, THAT would be neat!
  3. I actually wanted a black one - but yeah I agree - trouble is figured bubinga is a bitch to find - it's pretty rare, and before everyone starts posting figured bubinga basses - I know it does exist - just not where I live ;)

  4. Petary791


    Feb 20, 2005
    Michigan, USA
    That's really sweet! So that's for just being able to pluck anywhere in between the pickups or something?

    Nice jorb there. ;)
  5. DaveBeny


    Mar 22, 2000
    London, UK
    Nice one Mike. How is the ramp attached to the bass?
  6. I'm sorry to say it's screwed on - I wish I'd asked for it to be taped on as I really didn't want to have any holes drilled into my lovely baby :crying: but I was also worried it might fall off at some point. The GOOD news is that I tried it for the first time today and it is sooooo good - all the picking I do - be it with 2, 3 or 3 fingers plus thumb - is really much easier to execute; it also means I can pick between the pups now and get anothe rbunch of tones - I would recommmend getting one on your bass if this is the style you're into - which I think you are Dave?


  7. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Bronx, NY
    The first ramp I had put on a bass changed my playing forever. You're playing is about to take off ten fold. Just be carefull. It can be an afrodesiac (sp??). You'll want to play really fast because you can.

    Is your ramp the same radius as your fingerboard? This is the only way to get the full advantage of it. Also, get it as close to the strings as you're comfortable. I've seen some people with a ramp that isn't set up close to the strings. This is mute to the point. The best way to set up your bass to get the most out of the ramp is to have the strings as close to the fingerboard as possible. That way the string won't be pressed far in distance and you can get the ramp closer to the strings......I hope that makes sense. It's early here.

    Enjoy! :bassist:
  8. I totally hear you EM - you're right too about the playing thing and the speed - it was really annoying me before because the MEC pickups have such a small surface area that my fingers were always floating around in the space around the pups - and it was really hard playing the G with three or four fingers (plus thumb) so now that's solved. I did think about getting a more asthetically pleasing bit of wood but I actually like the big black block look - plus when you're playing your hand is over it anyway so noone but you is really going to apprciate it - I don't sit round staring at my basses all day!

    And FYI I have the strings as close to the pup-covers as possible - likewise on the neck - and yes it follows the radius of the finger board - great minds really do thing alike ;)

    Cheers dude - thanks for the encouraging thoughts

  9. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    I think it looks greeat and it probably really helps.
  10. Funkize you

    Funkize you Guest

    Nov 4, 2003
    Westminster Ca.
    Hey Urb, I love your music and your basses!

    But I have a question.

    What does a playing ramp do? What is it for?
  11. I first raised my pickups so they were just below the strings a few years ago because I found that I could play softer - like Gary Willis and others do - and get more control when finger picking - the ramp is there so it gives you a greater surface area to do this. Willis made the innovation of having a ramp that stretches from in front of his jazz pickup right to the end of the neck - but I like to slap a lot and that gets in the way when you want to pop the strings - but it really helps with your speed and accuracy when finger picking. Hope that helps - if anyone has a better description of the effect it has then post away - essentially it means the strings vibrate less - because you don't dig in as much - therfore the attack is quicker and more responsive...er, I think :meh:

  12. christoph h.

    christoph h.

    Mar 26, 2001
    Norm Stockton installed a slap ramp on his MTD. The idea is pretty much the same, you don't "grab" so much string when popping, and some thumb-stuff can get easier.

    Maybe try that, too? :D
  13. Classical_Thump


    Jan 26, 2005
    I have been having some trouble finding comfortable picking spots on my Carvin. It has a single coil in the front which is good for playing most stuff, but for playing fast it isnt the best. Then it has a humbucker MM style in the back, but that is hard to pick over because my fingers either hit the pole pieces when I pick hard, or I just can't get comfortable. I think a ramp would greatly help my playing and make it more comfortable. The bass is a tone monster and I just want to be able to play it comfortably. Good idea?
  14. Lorenzini


    Dec 31, 2004
    Los Angeles
    Mm, good idea a ramp is.
    Like in a P/J configuration, trying to rest my thumb on the lil P pup drives me crazy!!

    Cool cool cool.
  15. Classical_Thump


    Jan 26, 2005
    I think I'm going to get one. Where can I get one and how much do they cost?
  16. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    ramps. +[​IMG]= ?
  17. FireAarro


    Aug 8, 2004
    Hmm, might consider adding a ramp to my 'Ray5 now. Sounds good.
  18. The Warwick's have a sloping 'ramp' bit where the neck meets the body, which does help when double thumping as my thumb then has less 'space' to fall into, bouncing back from the body - I still don't like fret boards that just stop and with a 90 dgree abgle - but my fretless is like that and I can slap just fine on that now - I guess it still goes down to practice ;) - but now I have the best of both worlds (slap and fingerstyle)

    I used the bass last night at rehearsal and the ramp was so effective I couldn't believe it - it basically meant all my fingerstyle was sounding ultra-tight - and my picking hand felt a lot more comfortable - trouble I now want one on my fretless too.

    In terms of how much they cost and where you get one from - Jeff Chapman - my luthier pal - made this one from a piece of ebony (he had other woods available but I wanted a black ramp) and he had to shape it underneath also to match the curve in the body shape - and route out bits so the pickup screws would be hidden, he also shaped the top very subtley to match the finger board radius - total cost 75 GBP - or about $140 - which is pretty cool for a custom ramp.

    As a slight side note - he noticed that both pickups aren't actually centered - just goes to show that off the shelf bass are full of imperfections.... ;)

  19. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio