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Luthite body concern...is my cort curbow fretless really worth upgrading ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by z_nyo, Sep 27, 2008.

  1. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    Hi guys...

    I just bought A cort curbow fretless, my first fretless..and totally love it. I love the look, the sound and the construction is pretty solid..(minus some minor flaws in the fingerboard but it's been fixed)

    I think this will be a keeper and I'm planning to completely mod the bass.

    Here's my plan:
    US barts pup and NTMB preamp
    Hipshot or gotoh tuner

    But the thing is, I'm not sure about the LUTHITE body...something really bugs about it...I've heard some "unconfirmed" rumors that it tends to warp over the years...is that true ??

    So what do you guys think ? Is my curbow fretless really worth upgrading ?

  2. No. You just bought the bass. Dont replace anything until it needs replacing.
  3. ibanezcollector

    ibanezcollector Yoyo's Hurt When You Crank It Into Your Face

    Feb 18, 2007
    Cleveland Ohio
    I had a cort curbow for a while, I wouldnt think its bad, I also had a Ibanez guitar for about 6 years made of luthite with no issues what so ever..

    So I say you will be fine.. Its a synthetic so probably stronger then the wood its supposed to model..
  4. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Big Dogs Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    Are you modding the bass to generally improve it?
    Or are you dissatisfied with the sound, or with the tuners?

    If you like the sound, keep as is. If not, but your'e crazy about the way it plays, change things to suit you.
  5. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia

    I don't like the tuners, they are cheap plastic tuners and they don't hold tuning very well (have to re-tune after a day or two)...as far as the sound goes, I think I don't want to rush on upgrading, I read that upgrading the preamp should be enough to smooth out the tone...right now the tone is a bit "harsh" to my ear.

    I'm TOTALLY CRAZY about cort curbow....!! ;)
  6. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia

    Thanks for keeping my mind in peace...I love my curbow and I really hope it will last for a long time..:)
  7. WoodyG3


    May 6, 2003
    Colorado, USA
    If you like how it sounds now, why would you change the pickups? If you are doing it for run and just to see how new pups sound, okay, but if you are expecting some big improvement in sound just because you have new pickups, you'll likely be disappointed. Remember, strings are a lot cheaper and easier to change than pickups. That's where I would start if I were you.

    Also, with regard to the tuners and the bass not holding tune. First of all, IME, the nut has as much or more to do with holding tune most of the time. Secondly, as long as the bass holds tune well while you are playing, who cares if you have to tune up a day or two later?

    I've always wondered about those Curbows, and I've never had a chance to play one. It sounds like you really like the bass now, so if I were you I wouldn't mess with a good thing! Have fun with it!
  8. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    Okay...maybe I won't change the electronic for now....maybe I'll just hold on to the stock electronic a bit longer and see what happens..:)

    But I just Can't stand Plaztic tuners...I bought a set of matte black Gotoh Tuners for very very cheap...so what the heck :bassist:

    My fretless curbow plays great...Accoustically it sounds great with a lot of mwah ( a bit too much for my taste so I raised the action a little). Great fretless for the money (bought it $250 brand SPANKING NEW !!)...here, In my country I can get Cort basses for very very Cheap....
  9. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    Why not?

    The US bart's are a drop in replacement, so it's an easy mod that's easily reversable. If you don't like it/decide to sell it on you can switch it back to the original p/ups.

    If you like playing the bass, then you're never going to find anything similar, so a little on extras to make it good is worth it.
  10. Enmesarra


    Apr 29, 2007
    I hated the Curbow when I tried it! The tone and feel were both too artificial, maybe it was because of the setup or something but whatever... I know lots of people that hate Curbows like me but there are lots of Curbow fans out there too. So, based on your post, I assume you are one of the fans :). In that case, spending some cash to improve the sound of the bass that you already love with stock pickups and tuners makes sense to me. I'd say go for it if you can afford it. Worst case scenario; you swap back to your old pickup and tuners and sell the others.
  11. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    Thanks a lot for the response...I really love Curbow...Yes, they sound Modern but, to me, they don't sound artificial....they just sound different (in a positive way).

    If I could describe the sound...right now with the stock pickup, my fretless sounds punchy and bright...the high end is a bit harsh ( I think because of the electronics), that's why I thought I might have smoother sound if I upgrade the pickup and preamp.

    Totally dig this bass, both for look and sound. You should give Cort Curbow another chance...:)
  12. CapnSev


    Aug 19, 2006
    Coeur d'Alene
    All I know is luthite smells really bad. Open up the electronics compartment and take a big whiff. Eeewww
  13. z_nyo


    Mar 10, 2008
    Jakarta, Indonesia
    The smell never really bugging me...the sound makes up for it
  14. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    no pics=no bass
  15. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    I love Curbows. The smell goes away after a while.
    If things ever go wrong with luthite, it will totally be worth it to have a wood copy of the body custom made. In the between time, no reason to avoid changing what you don't enjoy.
  16. albass69


    Dec 20, 2010
    i dont hink you should upgrade this bass. i love the sound the feel the whoomp the weight and the size but ther neck tends to wrap, mine is craked in the headstock and neck, the body is very fragile if you hit it hat it would crack like a m&m you better use this instrument in a very gentle way, the 3 band eq is fantastic mine is very quiet.and for 230 bicks is really a good instrument
  17. GIBrat51

    GIBrat51 Innocent as the day is long Supporting Member

    Mar 5, 2013
    Lost Wages, Nevada
    I have to agree with WoodyG3; replace the strings first. I seriously doubt the factory strings are anything better than stuff from a bin in a no-name string factory somewhere. And replacing factory strings is SOP for 99.9% of us here, anyway. Visit the Strings forum for tips on fretless strings you might like.
    Yes, make sure the nut is up to snuff before you replace the tuners. Problems there can cause all kinds of grief; including going out of tune. But, if the tuners Really bug you, by all means, change them out.
    As for the pickup and pre-amp; don't you already have Bartolini stuff in the bass? Or do you just want better Bartolini stuff? Like others have said, I think I'd wait a while, and see how some different strings worked for me first; they can make an enormous difference sometimes..:)
  18. BBox Bass

    BBox Bass Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2011
    NW Pennsylvania
    Try leaving it in a case for a month or two. Make sure to stand back when you open the case or you might pass out from the fumes. Having said that, I own several basses made of Luthite (2 Curbows and 3 Ibanez EDA 905s) and I like them a lot.


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