NBD - Fender Tony Franklin fretless Precision

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by EddiePlaysBass, Nov 24, 2017.

  1. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    Earlier this year I sold my Ibanez BTB405QM, and I am currently in the process of selling the cheap fretless because in both cases I literally hadn't played them in over 8 years. I wanted a better fretless, I wanted a P/J configuration and I wanted a Precision. Started looking around a bit and I realized the Tony Franklin would cover all those basses in one smile.gif It helps that I've wanted one since 2009.

    Looked around for a second-hand one but the only one available had a suspicious crack in the fretboard, right above the truss rod. Then I looked at the website of the shop where I bought my Fender Jazz and my Squier Precision, and not only did they have one in stock but they offered me a 20% discount! Still a hefty price for an amateur like myself but I took a deep breath, promised my significant other I'd pay back every penny (loaned money from myself) and placed an order.

    It arrived over the weekend - roughly three weeks earlier than expected! Went to pick it up and got a guitar maintenance kit while I was there. I need a strap too, but didn't like the ones they had in store so I will make due with the one on the Squier.

    This bass plays like a dream... It's really everything I ever wanted, and more. The neck is less chunky than my Squier Precision, and feels very comfortable. The setup was damn near perfect - very low action. It is strung with roundwounds (anyone know which brand - I assume Fender - and what tension?) which I want to swap for flats or tapewounds, once I have some spare cash.

    There's a great tonal variety thanks to the three-way toggle, and I am obviously still in the "getting to know each other" phase. Two days ago I managed to only get the mwah when I selected the bridge pickup, but yesterday it was mwah all the way, regardless of what I tried :D My technique needs some polishing. Having said that, I found it fairly easy to play in tune a lot of the time. Definitely a lot of clams, too, but I can see myself taking this bass to the next rehearsal (which is 2 weeks from now anyway).

    This could very well end up being my main bass for the foreseeable future ... I am extremely happy :D

    Bas.jpg Bassen.jpg
  2. Qlanq


    Jul 9, 2007
    Proper cool bass.
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  3. tat2clod


    Nov 19, 2011
    Bloomington IN
    Enjoy that beautiful fretless tone monster.
    zon6c-f, joebar and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  4. Paulabass


    Sep 18, 2017
    Great bass! Enjoy it.
    Don't switch to flat because of the old rumor that rounds will ruin your fretboard- I've been selling basses for over forty years, and I tell everyone the same thing- put the strings you LIKE on it. Sand the fretboard every fifty years if you're worried.
    zon6c-f, Ikkir, Lvjoebass and 6 others like this.
  5. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    There's something about an unlined fretless board that is just sexy. And the black on black is sharp too.

    Love it. Glad you do too!
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2017
  6. PeterH


    Dec 31, 2015
    Not New York
    Definitely. I screwed around with half-rounds and nickel, flats and tapewounds, but nothing beats the delicious Roto 66s I put on mine... and don’t worry about how the ebony will last. I’ve got marks but they’re fine.
  7. Wisebass


    Jan 12, 2017
    Lost in Space
    Hi Eddie :)

    Tony was the guy who made me use my fretless for metal :bassist::bassist::bassist:

    a good party needs some music :thumbsup:

    stay with stainless rounds!!! They sing!!!


    Happy NBD :hyper::hyper::hyper:

    diegom, zon6c-f, joebar and 1 other person like this.
  8. Low8

    Low8 Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    Just saw NBC's Lester Holt in a recent issue of Guitar Aficionado in which he was photographed with his Fender Tony Franklin.

    Those are slick basses. :smug:
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2017
  9. 73jbass

    73jbass Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2004
    I have Chromes on mine. Welcome to the club!
  10. 39-Bassist


    Jul 7, 2010
    Endorsing Artist for: Brace Audio; Duncan Pickups; Line6, Hipshot, GHS Strings, Somnium Guitars
    :thumbsup: Awesome.....LOVE the TF bass...congrats!
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  11. Skeptismo


    Sep 5, 2011
    That's a beauty, a real lifetime keeper...don't ever sell it!
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  12. bobyoung53

    bobyoung53 Supporting Member

    The stock strings are DR Sunbeams, great round wounds for fretless basses. Maybe I play harder than most fretless players but I've had a lot of problems with RW's on bare board fretless basses but these are much better in that respect. I did take them off my TF bass as I like more bottom but they are really nice playing strings, I have them on a Ric 4001 fretted bass and they sound unbelievable on that bass.
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  13. Sid the Kid

    Sid the Kid Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2013
    Absolutely stellar basses. The Jazz pickup is perfectly matched with the P pickup. I love a bass when the only thing the switch changes is the tone, not the output.

    Every single fretted(less?) note on my dad's Tony Franklin just cries, and it is still bone stock with the factory setup.
    zon6c-f, EddiePlaysBass and joebar like this.
  14. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    I love mine-
    That bass has opened up more opportunities for me than I can count.
    Not many bassists playing FL and some people like to have it in their music.
    I run pressure wounds on mine.
    Kicks arse.
    zon6c-f, EddiePlaysBass and PeterH like this.
  15. Congrats! I never really liked most fretless tone too much, but the TF is just different for me. Love the tone, and it's such a joy to play. A few weeks back, I brought it to rehearsal and it was a blast. Since then I barely did not touch my fretted bass, and when I did it felt so strange and clunky... TF Precision rocks!!! :hyper:
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  16. By the way, I see you are in Belgium too! The one with the suspicious crack in the fretboard you are referring to must be mine then, when I was foolishly thinking of selling it :laugh: I am glad you found another one that suits you best :thumbsup:

    There is only one thing left to do then: start a Belgian TF fretless club! :roflmao:
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  17. Coward Of Reali

    Coward Of Reali

    Oct 13, 2003
    I love my TF, it's been my main bass for the past few years. I got a bit of an itch and replaced the bridge with a hipshot supertone and the pickups with GZR and honestly it didn't need it. I'll probably switch back to the stock bridge soon. I'm not a fan of dimarzio model j's and I find the gzr bridge pickup to be an improvement, snappier and more jaco esque, but the stock precision pickup is gold.
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  18. CaseyVancouver


    Nov 4, 2012
    Great looking bass!

    I have a similar Jazz Bass Special unlined fretless with pj pups, pre body and all black too. I love it.

    Also like your multi guitar stand. I really need to get something similar, ...too many basses hidden in cases around here!
    EddiePlaysBass likes this.
  19. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    Thanks everyone! It really is a lovely bass, and like I said: I can see this becoming my main bass. Got rehearsal next week, and I think I will take the TF and nothing else. What could go wrong, right?

    Nah, I really like TI Jazz flats on my Jazz bass, so I figured I would put them on this one, too. But now that I think about it, I may just order a new set for the Jazz bass and leave these strings as is.

    Don't intend to! :D

    Awesome, good to know! AFAIK this one came straight from the factory so I guess they will; be DR's then. Good sounding strings, I may order a set for one of the other basses.

    *LOL* Glad you didn't take my comment personally ;) It's probably nothing but I really wanted it in black, anyway. Despite having always wanted a sunburst P :) We'll talk soon about that Belgian TF club!! Think we'll be the only members :D

    It's actually to my significant other's credit that I got one of those. When we moved I together, I discussed the possibility of putting all my basses / gear in one room, and then explored the best options. This works well, though I would have preferred to hang them against the wall. Misses did nix that idea quickly :D
    gregouille23 likes this.
  20. Probably true ;) Good luck with your TF! I have my second rehearsal with it tomorrow, looking forward! After only few weeks I can already "see" tremendous improvement with my ear: when I am slightly sharp or flat, it just jumps out while before I would barely notice. Plus this bass is just so much fun to play!! :bassist:
    zon6c-f and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    May 18, 2022

Share This Page