NBD: Burnside Crossbow by Guild

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Eli_Kyiv, Jan 5, 2021.

  1. Eli_Kyiv


    Apr 7, 2020
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    Previous topic here:
    A strange beauty keeps popping up in a local marketplace

    Well, now I'm a proud owner of this quite exotic and rare bass, so I can share my first impression.
    First of all, pics. Cuz you know, no pics - did not happen.
    It turned out that cosmetically this bass is, should I say, far from perfect (more on this later), so the price dropped to $250. The guy who brought it (a seller's friend, for seller lives in another city) told me that this bass for a long time was a main touring axe of some well-known local bassist, who played in a support band of some well-known local singer, so it has seen the whole former Soviet Union. Well, in this case it becomes "road-worn", which adds some glory. ;)
    The main worry is a long crack on both sides of the body. I don't know if it is even possible to do something about it save full refinish.
    Almost perfect. Neck is straight, action is low, neck relief is small but exists, truss rod works, tuners work, saddles move. There's some fret buzz when I play with a lot of force, but this is to be expected with a low action.
    Intonation is not perfect, but I'm going to work on it, maybe tomorrow.
    Ergonomics and playability
    Very convenient bass. The only thing I noticed is that the natural position to play fingerstyle seems to be over a bridge pickup, while usually I play mostly over a neck pickup. Well, this is my first headless - maybe they all are like this. I think this is a question of time.
    Strings are double-ball end (Steinberger licensed). I may get an adapter for single-ball end strings, or replace a nut, or leave it as is. For now I'm inclined to latter.
    It's not good to play sitting without a strap though. But since I always play with a strap, this is not gonna to be a problem.
    Sound is very good. Growly, fat, heavy… some would say "ballsy". I don't know if headless basses were popular in hairy metal bands, but the sound of this bass seems to be just what's needed for the genre. I don't play a lot of this kind of music, but anyway. Slap sound is very impressive, too.
    Looks like somebody messed up with it. There's only one battery in a double battery compartment, a pot instead of a big switch, and an empty hole instead of a small switch. Pots are V-V-T. I did not notice any sign of preamp, but no battery - no sound. Probably active pups.
    I've noticed that the bridge pickup is much quieter than the neck one. Also strings D and G sound quieter (and maybe duller) than E and A. Maybe pickups height should be adjusted.
    So this is all for now. If somebody has an original wiring diagram of this bass, I would greatly appreciate it.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2021
    TrevorG, tindrum, shojii and 32 others like this.
  2. A9X

    A9X Inactive

    Dec 27, 2003
    Sweet. Leave it as it is, as it's a genuine, not fake relic.
    For DB strings, as you're in Europe, get Status ones. Very nice and shipping should be OK to there.

    Now you need to grow the hair to match the bass.
    tindrum, Riff Ranger and Eli_Kyiv like this.
  3. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    That is a cool beast. Love it! Congrats
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  4. JTE

    JTE Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 12, 2008
    Central Illinois, USA
    Very cool!
    The factory wiring was passive pickup with a simple preamp that boosted the signal but had no EQ, so it was VVT. The little switch simply turned the boost on or off. The active EMGs need a battery to work at all, so there's no need for a switch. If it were mine I wouldn't change the wiring at all, except perhaps to try the EMGs at 18 volts, because you already have a dual battery case. But I wouldn't try to restore it to factory wiring because the original pickups were not anything special.
    bholder, Dubious Aa and Eli_Kyiv like this.
  5. Eli_Kyiv


    Apr 7, 2020
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    I tried a year and a half ago. ;)
  6. A9X

    A9X Inactive

    Dec 27, 2003
    ^^ I'm envious. I look like the drummer, and have since my early 20's.
  7. Eli_Kyiv


    Apr 7, 2020
    Kyiv, Ukraine
    I do look like this as well since my early 30's. It was just a cheap wig from Aliexpress, cuz, you know, rock-n-roll... ;)
    shojii, Gyver, Bleecker and 1 other person like this.
  8. A9X

    A9X Inactive

    Dec 27, 2003
    The really sad thing is, is that when my hair started to go, I had a long, beach bleached blonde plait that stretched to my belt. Now, I'm just a better looking Kojak. All the money I saved on haircuts over the years, I spent on basses.
  9. yodedude2

    yodedude2 Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    san antonio, texas
    looks like the pickups were upgraded to actual emgs. one may wish to re-do and clean up the wiring job, though. i wonder how it would balance if you took the bottom strap button and moved it to the top of the horn? that might help with fingerstyle-position playing as well.

    edit: one other thought...if you re-do the wiring, since you have a spare hole, you could set up an on/off switch for the pickups rather than have them switched by the jack.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2021
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  10. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    That’s awesome. Have fun with it.
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  11. Look at the bright side. You could have been a worse looking Kojak.
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  12. That is a VERY cool Rock&Roll pic.
    bbh and Eli_Kyiv like this.
  13. A9X

    A9X Inactive

    Dec 27, 2003
    True. My wife would slap my head afterwards and say "Who loves ya baby?" just to rub it in.
    Bleecker and Eli_Kyiv like this.
  14. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Gold Supporting Member

    definitely unique! pretty cool that it plays/hangs so well --- once you get the intonation set = you're off to the races. congratulations on your new instrument! :thumbsup:
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  15. ElMon

    ElMon Supporting Member

    May 30, 2004
    Oklahoma City, OK
    Get that strap up by your neck ... whip out that thumb ... and be the Ukrainian Mark King.
    shojii and Eli_Kyiv like this.
  16. Outbush


    Nov 6, 2016
    Congrats! Really something different.
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  17. bbh

    bbh Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    She’s a looker for sure. Enjoy.
    Eli_Kyiv likes this.
  18. Five String

    Five String Supporting Member

    Pickup makers websites, like Seymour Duncan, have a lot of pickup wiring diagrams. If they don't have one that fits this instrument, they may have something close.
    Eli_Kyiv and instrumentalist like this.
  19. BunchyMutt

    BunchyMutt Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2014
    My first thought is not that it's inherent in the headless design, but rather that the bridge strap position has been moved 7 to 10 cm away from where a more traditional strap button would be
  20. Queue

    Queue Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2013
    DC Suburbs, USA
    That's really unique. I probably would have bought it, too!

    Question: what is the scale length? (hard to tell with headless design, and bridge so far back)