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Mexican P is magical...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Claymore, Jan 29, 2020.

  1. Claymore


    Nov 10, 2019
    Rhode Island
    Oh, great... another guy singing the praises of his Mexican-made fender and making unsubstantiated claims about how it sounds as good, if not better than an American Fender. I'm not doing that. If fact, I can't remember ever playing an American P-bass so I have no basis for judgement. (although I do own an American Jazz) What I AM saying is that I avoided getting a P-bass entirely for the better part of my playing life cuz it's the obvious, pedestrian choice... EVERYBODY seems to have a Precision and that in itself kept me from buying one cuz I am a stubborn rebellious man. But after having played one in GC for the first time in maybe 20 years, I thought to myself maybe this Leo Fender character was onto something... just maybe. I know this will elicit a chorus of "Yeah, no duh" but I love this bass. That didn't stop me from ordering a different pickguard before I even had the instrument in my sweaty hands, ripping the strings off it the very first day to make way for the LaBella flatwounds, dressing the fret ends (which weren't too shabby to begin with), rolling the fretboard edges and ordering an EMG Geezer pickup. I may or may not do a parallel/series switch. I guess the point of this post is to acknowledge that no matter how much I love an instrument, I can't help messing with it... I have an illness. How many of you out there also suffer from upgrade-itis? For those of you that are compulsive tweakers, has there ever been an instrument you owned so perfect that you didn't dare alter it? This question is not directed at "Just buy an instrument that has the features that you want"-type people. It's more for the modders.
  2. Bass V

    Bass V

    Dec 11, 2008
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    only 1 of my P basses is optional for modding and the ol' $100 LB11 just may be getting an ancient mudbucker at the true neck position, if that goes gangbusters then a 2nd one near the bridge might join in. with 3 PUs I can get a Deaf Eddie Strat-o-Blaster knob, then add a sweetener like a Tonestyler or greasebucket circuit ...if that doesn't make magic on it's own then I'll give up on that obsession and be happy with my basic Ps.
    alanloomis1980 and Claymore like this.
  3. Claymore


    Nov 10, 2019
    Rhode Island
    I'm considering a TBX but I need to look at reviews a bit more. I've never tried one.
    Bass V likes this.
  4. Bass V

    Bass V

    Dec 11, 2008
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    another option I needed reminding of, thx! there are more choices I need to collect and decipher their capabilities but the magic knobs I mentioned are both for Strats and I think there's real potential. it'll be a costly effort, maybe it'll pay off big, the expense will then be worth it.
  5. Iofflight

    Iofflight Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2018
    I have upgrade-it is and I ended up only changing the neck and tuners on mine. I really think it’s a great sounding instrument.
    tzohn, Spidey2112 and Claymore like this.
  6. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    I changed out the stock neck for a Precision Bass Special neck. The 'E' tuner needs the spring bent back into proper shape, so I'll do that next string change.

    I have Original '62's I want to put into it, plus a pickguard change, more fitting of my personality.


    The bass itself is light in weight, and very comfortable to play. When I'm not hitting clams, sounds great, too. I still want those '62's in there, though.
  7. dmt


    Apr 19, 2003
    Orbiting Sol
    Not counting strings, the only guitar/basses that i have that I haven’t changed something on are my old American Series Strat and my MIJ Mustang bass.

    The Strat has a semi-wonky tuner that could really use replacing, but I don’t actually play that guitar much, and the one tuner, though reluctant and grabby, does tune to pitch and hold pitch, so I’ve never done anything about it. Otherwise the guitar is almost perfect for what it is. The neck is a bit thicker than my ideal, but that may be part of the reason for its unusually thick tone so I haven’t taken such a significant step as to mess with the neck. Still bone stock almost 20 years after I bought it.

    The other is my MIJ Mustang bass. It does have some neck divey-ness to it (more of a dip than a dive), so I’ve been thinking of getting/installing lighter replacement tuners - probably will at some point, but for now it’s stock. Pots are getting scratchy too. Might even explore a replacement pickup as the sound is somewhat on the thin side. Basically, I guess it’s in the cards - this one won’t stay pristine.

    Hmmm, then I have an AVRI Tele guitar that I will either get a new neck or a re-radiusing of the current neck for, so that one kinda doesn’t count. Guess I haven’t done anything to my two acoustic basses either. Okay, 4 or 5.

    But I swear, I’m a modder!

    My MIM P got shielding, new pots, orange drop cap, cloth wiring (not that it needed cloth wiring but the dealer threw it in the package with the pots when he shipped them), new pickup...that’s it. More changes may well be in store in the future though (almost bought a new pickguard for it whilst on my last vacation, but held off). Lightweight knobs and tuning machines could happen, and maybe even a refinish (its the one instrument I’ve seriously considered a refin on). The main thing holding me off from further changes is that I plan to at some point decide between it and an American Standard P I also have and then keep only one of them. My heart says the MIM (which I prefer), but my back says the lighter MIA.

    Oh yeah, bone nut... man, it goes on and on :roflmao:
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2020
    Helix, tzohn, alanloomis1980 and 2 others like this.
  8. Iofflight

    Iofflight Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2018
    I was actually surprised at how good the stock pickups were. I bought a new bridge electronics and Lollar pickups for this and decided to just get a totally different p bass body to put it into. That was how much I liked the original. Be interested to hear what you think of the stock vs 62s.
    Monterey Bay-ss and Spidey2112 like this.
  9. Claymore


    Nov 10, 2019
    Rhode Island
    "Hitting Clams"...excellent band name. :roflmao::bassist:
    Spidey2112 and dmt like this.
  10. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    Yeah, but then you gotta deal with PETA, which would probably be a huge PITA.
    JRA and Claymore like this.
  11. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    Not disputing the stock pups are good... they're fine.

    By putting in the '62's, it'll be the closest I ever get to a '62. Lol!
    Jazzcaster89 and Iofflight like this.
  12. Iofflight

    Iofflight Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2018
    It’s funny you should mention that because the bass I’m building is meant to be somewhat of a copy of the custom shop 62 with a few changes. Namely the neck will have 22 frets and be medium jumbos with the Lollars instead of 62s.
    Spidey2112 and Helix like this.
  13. Claymore


    Nov 10, 2019
    Rhode Island
    Edit: I ended up ordering a Benson Custom pickup instead. I like the 15% overwound concept for the same reason I like MFD's... Better to have more power and not need it than the other way around. :D
    Clutchcargo likes this.
  14. Helix

    Helix California U.S.A.

    May 29, 2015
    Yep....modder here

    FWIW, my mother was a modder, and her mother was a modder…...so I'm from a long line of modders
    dmt, murphy, bhendrix and 2 others like this.
  15. Aaron Houts

    Aaron Houts

    Jan 10, 2014
    Flo Rida
    P bass fan and modder for sure.

    I have an AmPro P5:
    Hipshot tuners and bridge
    New pickguard
    Stealth string retainer on the B

    I’m looking into getting an American Special
    which I will mod the bejeezus out of including a new pickup which shall be one of the following:
    Fender Original 62
    Fender Custom Shop 60
    Fender Pure Vintage 63
    Fender V Mod (to match my P5)

    Then Hipshot tuners and bridge
    Solderless harness (to get rid of the Greasebucket)
    tzohn and alanloomis1980 like this.
  16. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    I build my own basses, and design pro audio gear for a living, so....kind of the ultimate DIY'er - I've never built a bass that didn't get at least some changes done after the initial build. Most of my re-builds are re-wires (changing the circuitry - see my avatar for some idea of what's up there). I judge the success of an iteration not by it never being further modded, but by how long it holds up before it gets modded.

    Of course, sometimes there are issues that require physical modification:

    holey back.JPG
  17. Claymore


    Nov 10, 2019
    Rhode Island
    All you have to do now is fill all those holes with tort and you'll have a tone monster. :thumbsup:
    Helix and murphy like this.
  18. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    I understand - maybe someday I'll do that, but for now I'm sticking with 80 percent Nitrogen, 20 percent Oxygen as my tone hole fill material of choice, due to the low density, which was, after all, the impetus for the tone holes.
    murphy, sears and Claymore like this.
  19. ThudThudThud


    Jun 4, 2010
    I had a 2000 MiM Precision that I bought that had been a closet queen, and was probably only played a few times prior to my buying it (in 2018-ish).
    Mods: New pickguard, and barrel knobs (it had those Strat style), and a complete set up, followed by further set ups, and more tweaking, and trying different strings, and more tweaking, and it finally was a fantastic Precision. The stock pickups had a fantastic 70s rock/punk growl, and with NPS 7250ML strings it was everything a (rounds-strung) Precision should be.
    It perfectly Complimented, and complemented my 60s CV Squier P with Chromes.

    Both lost in the fire. That's why this is in past tense.
  20. Took me nearly 20 years to get a P bass. Right around the time I joined TB... :rolleyes:

    I also modded the snot out of it. Jazz neck. Complete rewire. New knobs, PG, Bridge. Ashtray. Copper shielding. Love this bass! :smug:

    BeSeeingYou, dmt, gregmon79 and 6 others like this.

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