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MTD 635's???

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jokerjkny, Apr 4, 2005.

  1. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    hey all,

    in my everquest of a sweet 6 stringer, thinking about an MTD 635 24 fret.

    i pretty set on a maple board, cause i like the open, articulate sound, and as per on Mike's website, maybe a mahogany body for a piano like low end.

    but top wise, would an exotic top ala spalted maple, myrtle burl, etc. look with a plain maple neck? does Mike do birdseye maple tops?

    at any rate, how do you guys dig yours, and of course, how 'bout some pics?!
  2. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    Hey Jokerjkny,
    I had an Ash body, Maple neck/Maple board MTD for awhile. It sounded great but I could never get used to the look of the plain Maple board. Mike generally won't use figured Maple for the fingerboards and I'm a sucker for a Birdseye board!

    My favorite combo, as of late, is Ash with a Wenge/Wenge neck. Ton's of articulation throughout the whole range of the bass. Very clear all the way down to the B string, without being overly harsh or bright. I'm sure Mahogany would be great. I might try and Ash neck on a Mahogany body though if it were me.

    Good luck either way though. You cannot go wrong with one of Mike's basses. They are pretty amazing deals for a hand-made, high-end bass.
  3. hands5


    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    I had a 635 that was Tulipwood,maple neck/Rosewood fret board and 24 fret,it was a very nice playing bass,but it's tone was a little to thin forr my liking,so I sold it.
    The other bass player at our church has a Avoidore body,Walnut top with the maple neck/maple fret board 635,and it has a good deal of snap,but lacking a little low-end "grunt IMO.
    I think if I were to purchase another MTD,it would be a 21 fret 535 with a Northen Ash body maple neck with Wenge fretboard,because I feel that his instruments that have the 21 frets have a fuller tone than the extended range instruments.however the 635 is an outstanding instrument to have
  4. boogiebass


    Aug 16, 2000
    I had one of Andrew Gouche's old 635's for a while. Wenge board and great sound. Very light, too. I liked it. I sold it because I prefer closer string spacing. Good luck! ;)
  5. Hollow Man

    Hollow Man Supporting Member

    Apr 28, 2003
    Springfield, VA
    For a while, there was one at a local GC that I got to play several times... it was a thing of beauty. It's what turned me on to 6'ers as a whole.

    I actually emailed Mike with the serial number of the bass and asked him to send me the specs on it, just so I would know what I was playing. He promptly replied that the body is tulipwood with a myrtle burl top, and the neck is wenge with a wenge fingerboard. It's the only MTD I've been able to get my hands on, but I tell ya, I would have killed to be able to take it home. It had great tone for thumbstyle and for finger pluckin'. I found it to be very versatile, and the neck was flawless. I was sold immediately, and though I love my Cirrus, it won't be around one second longer than it takes to get my dirty little paws on a 635!
  6. trainyourhuman


    Apr 12, 2000
    How about this... Alder body, walnut top, maple neck, ebony board? Fan-freaking-tastic!

    Alder is nice and even, tone wise, walnut adds some snarl, maple is maple, and the ebony adds a smooth clarity. In a 635 that would be totally killin.
  7. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL

    so, how was is too wide? the Thumb 6 i tried was waaaaaaaaaaay too close to my liking. :(
  8. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    For me the question is "how close is to close?" I've played a bunch of 17m six strings and they always felt too tight for me. The 18m spacing on the 635's feels great. I have a 19m six that I love but it definitely takes more effort to play that one than the 635. I think 18m is the right spacing for a six in general. 17m is too tight for most players that I know and 19m tends to be a bit too much for most.

    I would get my hands on a few examples though and see what works for you.

  9. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    cool, joel,

    according to the Warwick website, it says 16.5mm!!! :eyebrow:

    but thx for the info. wenge/wenge ash sounds mighty tempting, but i've already have my share of ash bodied basses.

    btw, on your trip, can you ask Mike if he does birdseye tops? if not, then just pick a nice myrtle burl top for me... ;)
  10. Joelc73

    Joelc73 Supporting Member

    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    16.5 sounds like it would hurt ;)

    No sweat, we can pick you a great piece. We have some AMAZING Maple burl picked out already if you want to get in on that.

    By the way, you can never have too much Ash! Seriously though, the Ash seems to balance the Bartolini soapbars and circuit in a very smooth way. They have a darker character in general to my ears. Ash through that electronics combo translates into warm and punchy rather than bright and aggressive. YMMV
  11. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    yea, totally! if you guys have anything like that MTD top on your site, i'd most definitely be interested. that's some sweet gorgeous 3D figure... :cool:

    oh man, those are the magic words arent they?

    actually, i'm SOOO gas'ed for this guy:


    if only it was a natural maple burl... ;)

    but interesting to point that out. i did own a 4 string wenge/wenge/alder bass, and while killer, sounded oddily growly for me. i'm more of a hifi, smooth, fat kinda sound, hence the maple on mahogany idea. hopin' for a clear open top end with that "piano like lows" mike mentions on his website.

    btw, i saw this on Mike's site:

    ever try an ash necked MTD? how would this sound with a maple fingerboard?
  12. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

    After living in the land of Phat bass for years (Stingray with flats) I decided I wanted to step out and do some soloing and chord playing. I tried a five string with a high C for a while but it just didn't feel right.

    Fast forward a few years and I wanted to try again but this time with a six string. Something about the look, feel and playability of the USA MTDs are just so right to me. I gave Mike Tobias a call and asked for his wood recommendations for an articulate bass. Based on those recomendations, I found a used 635. Not being able to play it before buying it, I gave Mike another call (the woods were slightly different from what he recommended). He confirmed that the bass should be what I'm looking for. He also offered to check out the bass and set it up if I'd be willing to drive by his workshop on the way home (I include all this to let you know the builder is as wonderful as the bass.).

    Needless to say, I ended up getting the bass. It has an ash body, burl maple top, maple neck and ebony fretboard. I've had the bass for abouat three weeks now. It is effortless to play, weighs less than my Stingray and has a wonderful, articulate sound. I'm still getting used to the bass however; both the extra strings and the different sounds via the EQ. I'm expecting it to get better as I get more used to the bass.

    My rig right now is an SWR Basic 350 and Goliath JR II. In the next week or so, I should be getting a four ohm Acme B-1. I'm really curious to see how the bass sound through that cab. I'm sure it'll sound different.


    Attached Files:

  13. lyle

    lyle Guest

    Jan 10, 2004
    Vernon, B.C. Canada
    I played a mtd sixer with a maple burl top and wenge board. The body was ash and this made a killer sounding combo.
  14. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    holy crap, that's a killer bass ,L.

    24 fretter? any more pics?
  15. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

    It's a 24 fretter. Mike claims there's no tone difference between the 21 and 24 frets.

    Here's a couple more pics the previous owner took. I'll try and get a few decent pics later in the week.


    Attached Files:



    Nov 24, 2001
    New York,NY
    Joker you sill foo! That bass L has was mine & YOU played it at Nicks when we checked out his pre's that day! Killer bass & hope it has a great home...

  17. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

    Hey Devil Dude, how's it going?

    I hope you're not looking for your bass back :ninja: It's found it's home. :smug:

    I haven't had the chance to compare it to other 635's yet (I want to get more familiar with it first) but my basement test says it's a keeper.

    I'll play out with it for the first time Saturday. I'm interested to see how it works in a band context.



    Nov 24, 2001
    New York,NY
    Great! Glad you're lovin' it! When ya brought it to Mikes did you get it checked for Influenza? Use it & maintain it well, it's a great piece...

  19. adrian garcia

    adrian garcia

    Apr 9, 2001
    las vegas. nevada
    Endorsing Artist: Nordy Basses, Schroeder Cabs, Gallien Krueger Amps
    i had and played a 635 exclusively for 2 years. It had an Ash body and a Spalted Maple top- Wenge neck and Madagascar Rosewood board. It was probably my favorite MTD ever. It had a gloss finish . Sounded awesome, i like the openness and growl of Ash- not much of a fan of mahogany expect maybe for a fretless.
    I remember when i asked Mike if he would do a Buckeye top- he said no.. then a few months later, he built his first. Eventually even asked if i knew where some good buckeye might be. I asked about figured wood fretboards, and he said no- this year at NAMM he had spalted and sapwood boards on at least 2 basses- he also told me he would not do birdseye ( well, eventually he agreed to do one for me ). That was a while ago. He might be ready now ;)
  20. LeonD

    LeonD Supporting Member

    Hell no. I asked him to throw in big dose of mojo. :eek:

    With my bass playing, I need all the help I can get. ;)