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My Buddy Picked Up A Yamaha RBX550M

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by deeptubes, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. deeptubes


    Feb 21, 2011
    He's 37, and it's his first instrument. Scott got it for free from another friend of his, Jeremy, who was moving out of town. After less than a month, Jeremy moved back and asked for his bass back. Scott essentially told him, too bad. Scott and Jeremy grew up together and are like brothers. Now, on to the bass....

    According to the serial number, it was produced in Feb of either '90, '00, or '10. Judging upon its condition, I'd guess '90. Couldn't find a date stamp on it. It had a set of rounds on it that were so old they sounded like old flats - completely dead. It now has a fresh set of D'Addario 160s. Electroncally, it wasn't working. Loose wire on the blend pot. I completely broke it down for a thorough cleaning and polishing. There was a plexiglass "block" between the bridge and the body. When I played it unplugged, I had to beat the hell out of it to get it to produce any audible sounds. The bridge ground was under the plexiglass and obviously not grounding the bridge or strings. In addition, the intonation was WAY off. The neck was shimmed, tilting it back, and had about 1/2" of bow to it. Didn't need the shim, just needed some straightening. In order to adjust the truss, I had to completely remove the neck. It takes a 5/16" deep socket to adjust, which is not happening while attached to the body. I dug up an owners manual, and set the bass up using the low end of Yamaha specs. Action is about 50% higher than my preference. But, I think the higher sitting strings will be good for him to learn on. I told him I will re-set it in 6 months. When I do that, I'm going to lower the action a bit and make it a little easier to play. Now re-assembled and set up, the bass sings. Sounds good through my rig, but most basses do. Gave Scott some practice exercises to help teach him timing, speed, finger strength, and dexterity, and told him to pay attention to absolutely everything he hears and figure it out on the bass. Hooked him up with a strap, cord, and an old tuner and sent him on his way. I'd love to give him more guidance but want him to find his own path instead of directing him down mine.

    Very happy to be introducing a friend to the world of bass! :bassist:

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