Movable Fret Bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Whafrodamus, Feb 14, 2004.

  1. Whafrodamus


    Oct 29, 2003
    Andover, MA
    What is it, and how does it work? I heard that Les claypool has one, but I have no idea what it is.
  2. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004
    Week or so ago I ran across that. Seems I was reading some stuff on fretless bass and there was metion in passing of a bass with moveable frets. That is it could be played fretted or fretless. Don't know if this is what you're referring to. Doesn't sound right but Steinberger is the manufacturer that comes to mind.
  3. Trevorus


    Oct 18, 2002
    Urbana, IL
    I saw one a while back that was a headless that had a dial at the top. The frets moved out or in depending on which way you turned the dial.
  4. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    if it was headless, then Steinberger would be a good guess.
  5. luknfur


    Jan 14, 2004
    This was just an aside in the reading, no pics. But it did mention the mechanism for activation and where it was located, I just don't recall what and where. You have to figure the guy was looking through some venician blinds or something when it crossed his mind.
  6. kmacleish


    Nov 19, 2003
    Atlanta, GA
    I'm reasonably well-informed on Steinbergers, and this is a new notion to me. But it sure does sound like the sort of thing that Ned might have tried.

    Anyone else . . .?
  7. JDGA fan

    JDGA fan

    Oct 9, 2003
    I don't know about this particular bass, but years ago I saw a TV program about inventions that included what I recall was a Wal Custom bass that could be converted from fretted to "lined" fretless by lowering the frets into the fretboard (I think he turned a dial, but could be wrong). I also vaguely recall an American company that used to have replaceable fingerboards - fretted and fretless - that slid into place on the neck.
  8. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
  9. pilotjones

    pilotjones Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2001
    More discussion of the convertible steinie, the Novatone Switchboards, and other ideas to accomplish fretted/fretless, in this thread.

    Quick summary: The switchboards had problems, the Steinie sounded bad, and no other viable ideas were generated by the thread participants. But it would be great if it was possible.