Looking for certain wooden hardware bits for Ibanez SR1400

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by Cran, Oct 24, 2018.

  1. Cran


    Oct 24, 2018
    Hey guys, I've acquired an Ibanez SR1400 earlier this year, and have been looking at making it "my own". I was thinking about customising it with some aesthetic changes, the full extent of which I don't yet fully know (If you have any ideas be sure to shoot them my way!). For now I have three things I'm looking for:
    - New knobs
    - Pickup covers/veneers
    - Tuning machines/Tuning machine heads

    For reference, this is what my bass looks like right now, fully stock.

    Now, I've been having some trouble with finding all of the parts I'm looking for, and I was wondering if asking/sparking a conversation here would lead me to the solution I need.

    Firstly, the knobs. I hate what the stock knobs on Ibanez basses look and feel like. They're too plastic-y, and I'm thinking of a more premium looking and feeling option. My main idea was to replace the current knobs on my bass with wood knobs matching the fretboard wood (or similar). Now, I haven't had much trouble finding custom knob brands/makers which would look alright in theory (the fretboard is made out of Panga Panga, to clarify). The problem I've had, however, was with the size of the knobs. See, the SR1400 comes with two regular-sized knobs, and three mini knobs, all going on 6mm shafts.
    As much as I'd want to just buy five of the same size knob, I think that would be entirely too cramped, and would just look out of place. My question is the following: Do you know any brand/maker that makes mini-knobs the same size as the ones on my bass? Or is there another solution that I'm not seeing?

    Secondly, I'd like to discuss pickup covers. I know that there are both pickup covers and pickup veneers. Would you guys recommend one more than the other? Is there any noticeable difference? Furthermore, are there any sellers that you'd recommend? I don't know if I feel entirely comfortable with buying from a sketchy Ebay seller, as cheap as they may be haha.
    Also, I'd like to ask whether the cover covering the pole pieces on the pickups does anything to the sound. I've heard it doesn't, as wood is not magnetic, but I want to make sure.
    (Honestly, these are the parts which I would have the least trouble finding the right ones, as my bass has a pretty standard pickup selection. I just want to have a conversation haha)

    Finally, the parts with which I've had the most trouble are the tuning machine heads. I saw them on those master built Warwicks and I knew that I had to have some on mine! Thing is, I haven't found many sellers of them. I know THG Knobs makes them, but honestly I can't figure out their website, as well as I'd like to know how much they would cost.
    (Actually, looking for pictures of the Warwick tuners for this post, I found them being sold here. Would these work on my bass' tuning pegs? It has Gotoh machine heads, but are they a drop-in replacement or will I need to do something else?)

    Overall, those are all the qualms I have. Thanks for getting this far through a super long post! And again, if you've got any ideas of things I can do/replace to make my bass even more special please tell me!
  2. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    I’ve never looked at them hard but i’ve read here about several people who make some really nice wood knobs. Maybe find them and see if they do custom or to order specialty sets.
    Pickup covers i can help you with, never tried any.
    If you can remove the current machine head keys it shouldn’t be too tough to find someone to carve you a set. We’ve got a local wood working speciality store (Wood Crafters) here in town and their bulletin board is loaded with all manner of wood workers looking for projects. I had a guy make me a set of nice walnut handles for some fly tying tools and he did a great job for what i thought was a very reasonable rate.
  3. Cran


    Oct 24, 2018
    Yeah, I've seen a couple of them online, but they all seem so horribly expensive! I don't really want a set of special custom-made knobs (as much as I may need them considering the nature of the Ibanez preamp setup), I just want some standard, wood knobs like the ones that Kiesel sell. What can you do though, I guess I'll have to keep looking until I find what I'm looking for, or cave and get a set custom made.

    As for the pickup cover, I'm going to be a horrible hypocrite and try out the set that's being sold on Ebay. I may need to drill out some holes for the pole pieces, but I can do that at home. I may also need to apply a finish (I don't know what rosewood naturally looks like), but I think it's worth it for that price if they're any good.

    And I hadn't considered going to a specialized wood carving shop and seeing if they'd make any for me! I don't live in a particularly large city (Hamilton, New Zealand, with about 161k people), so I don't know if I'll find any, but I'll have a look! Otherwise the Warwick set looks good, as expensive as they are. Again, I'll have to see what my options are.

    Thanks for responding though!
  4. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    IM @Turnaround he does custom knobs.
    For buttons you can contact deeze guies: Charis Tuner Buttons
    Now about your pickups, The wood will have no affect on the magnetic field, but it will reduce the string clearance. Do you dig in? Do you do it over the pickup? A veneer isn't a good idea if you dig in over the pickup much because you are liable to grab the edge of the veneer and chip it. but a cover will have to be thicker and you'll have less string clearance. Pick your poison.
  5. Cran


    Oct 24, 2018
    Thanks for the recommendations! I’m going to message Charis and ask if they do bass tuners.

    As for the pickup cover, I’m not fully sure if I’ve got a lot of options. I talked to Stew McKinsey from Nordstrand, and he said that you can’t apply a wood cover to a normal size pickup (like mine), as wood covers need to be thicker than plastic ones and the pickup inside isn’t fitted for that use. They do offer “wood cover” pickups, which come in a smaller size fit for thicker covers, but I honestly don’t want to buy a new set of pickups. The other option would be to have a larger cover made for the normal-size pickups, and re-rout the cavities. I know I’m being complicated, but I’m afraid of messing up my bass if I try that, and even then resell becomes impossible due to the custom sizes. I think a veneer is my only option here. I’m not a very violent player, so I don’t think that’s going to be a big problem, but it will look worse. That’s something I’ll have to deal with, I guess.

    Thanks for replying though! Some progress has been made towards the end goal!
  6. sissy kathy

    sissy kathy Back to Bass-ics Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 21, 2014
    Arbutus, MD
    This isn't much help to you, but I've been toying with the idea of having overwound pickups made. They could mount from the back leaving the front of the bass unblemished. Don't know how something like that would sound though.
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