Modding my cheapie spector

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by lesfleanut, Mar 15, 2003.

  1. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    Im thinking about modding my cheapo Performance Series 4 string Spector. Im looking to totally gut the pups, preamp, pots and all that. I also want a new bridge and tuners. I have never done anything like this but I know enough to do it.

    To help me out a little could you guys post the upgrades you would get?

    I need

    Pickups (curently running two EMG-SSD's)
    anything else that you folks say I need

    I think I pretty much have it under control but I some questions.

    1) Does the electronics and pots and stuff some with the pickups?

    2) Do I need any special tools for construction and setup of the bass

    3) Should I look into getting a nice neck? I want this thing to feel really nice and I think the neck is cheap

    4) If pickups come with all the electronics and stuff are they low quality? If so can I get better 3rd party electronics?

    I play alot of fingerstyle, and a good deal of slapping poping and raking. I like the sound of Incubus and Victer wooten, just to give you a clue for the sound I like. I know I will never sound as good as vic with this bass (or any bass for that matter), but his tone is crystal clear and hi-fi. And dirk from incubus has such a nice warm fat tone, I would like to be able to get a tone that can do somthing around those lines.

    So there we go, hopefully a few of the nice guys here can help me out. Thanks in advance for the help guys, I would really appreciate it. :)
  2. The mods you want to do are not worth it, you are better spending the money on getting a better bass. If you are really set on it, then my advice would be to install the pickups and preamp from a higher spec Spector (haha!), namely the USA EMG pickups and Aguilar preamp. I would leave the bridge and tuners alone, and spend some money getting the bass setup by a top luthier, not just the tech at your local GC. This will achieve what you desire.
  3. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    Actually I want to do this for the fun, and to spice up my old bass. I will also be setting it up myself. I will definatly be getting anew bridge and tuners, I dont like the hardware on that bass at all. Plus I wanna go gold with the hardware I think, just because it looks nice

    I know this is a low end, but im mainly doing this to:

    1) Have the fun of rebuilding my bass.

    2) Make a bass that I like sound and play alot better.

    3) I want a decent 4 string and I dont wanna buy one. The next bass thast I will be buying will be a high end five.

    4) Its either modify or sell if for basically no money at all. Which I dont want to do because this is my first bass. I pretty much and I have an attatchment to it.

    Anyone got any more sugestions?:)
  4. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    I'd have to agree with Marty that the Mods you want to do will cost about as much as a good used pro-series spector and really aren't worth it. Just for a breakdown, for some better EMG's, a good preamp (like an aguilar OBP-1), and pots, will run you around $250 if you get them new. Replacing the nut with Bone Or brass will cost around $40-$50 for the whole job..A good bride will probably run $30-$50 if you get a good deal. I wouldn't replace the tuners unless you really were set on it. THe necks are actually pretty good for the price, and if your going to replace it, your not going to find a Warmoth neck to fit it- you'll probably have to pull the neck from a higher end spector and I can't remember the last time I saw a non-complete spector, so the neck could cost a couple hundred at the lowest. I really like the 3-piece maple neck on my NS2000-Q5. Anyway, the Fat-tail style spector bridge really is one of the better stock bridges out there, and all in all, a good bridge. Like Marty said, have a professional luthier do a full setup, it can really make a big difference. The only thign I'm sure on is the pots. Not sure where a good place to get some decent pots would be.
  5. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    Oh, i was actaully in the same situation as you recently. I didn't want to let go of my first bass and I couldn't get much cash for it. First I defretted it and it was liek new for a few months- then i wanted to upgrade it and started looking at teh prices and options and just said forget it and sold it for 100 bones so that I can pick up a nicer fretless for the price of trying to upgrade teh old one. It was an Austin 5 string passive by the way...I bet you could get $150-$175 for your spector if you tried.
  6. Killdar


    Dec 16, 2002
    Portland Maine
    If I were you, I would keep the neck, as it would seems to me would hold just as much attatchment value as whatever you arent replacing.....tuners, going for different color I suppose it is ok, if willing to spend the money, but it really makes no difference except for cosmetics as far as I know. All the electronics and the bridge would make a big difference, and if you want to go even further and make it that much cooler, get a piezo bridge for it. That would be interesting to try out, and would make the project more interesting.
  7. 5stringDNA


    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    The Piezo thing sounds like a good idea Killdar, didn't think of that. I think the Piezo-body spectors ahve a really neat unique tone. I tottally agree on the neck thing. If you get rid of everything but the body, is it really the same bass anymore???
  8. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    Alright, originally I was not going to replace the neck, which was something I was a little iffy on. I just didn’t know weather it would be needed or not. I have decided to keep the neck. Now weather I defret or not is something I don’t know...

    1) 2 EMG-35DC Pickups (Do these pickups come with all the electronics and pots I need?)
    2) Schaller M4G Tuning pegs

    Good? Bad? Opinions. Please, any suggests are welcome.

    I still need to find a nice bridge, so if you guys could throw me a few good brands for me to check out.

    I don't think I will be going piezo, I want to keep it a simpler project. But thanks for throwing out the suggestion. :)
  9. Lockout


    Dec 24, 2002
    No, they don't... you could use the electronics that came with your bass, but if you want really nice sound, I think you might want to look into a new onboard preamp, maybe an Aguilar or one of EMG's. I'm not very experienced with this stuff, so I can't really give you any suggestions on what to put in it.
  10. lesfleanut

    lesfleanut Guest

    Sep 25, 2001
    Syracuse N.Y.
    Ok, as Im new to the whole electronics part I need to know what exactly it is that I need to buy. Everything that is in the control cavity is getting gutted.