NBD --- the Glarry Bass Club! ha!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JRA, Oct 14, 2019.

best bass for metal is wood

Poll closed Nov 4, 2019.
  1. yes

  2. no

    0 vote(s)
  3. burlywood

  4. i see what you're doing here...

  5. ...but i don't care

  6. it's all good...

    0 vote(s)
  7. ...until it's not...

  8. which is the same as carrots

Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    TLDR: cool, cheap, fretless bass!
    0 tin foil.jpg

    the read:

    this experience is not a GAS event, per se, but rather my continued 'crusade' to extol the virtues of buying cheap, investing in mods/'upgrades', and then playing great instruments for less money.

    all of my instruments are unlined fretless PJs with the exception of one jazz style ax. i've never liked Ps. i'm not crazy about the J. i like PJs: they have to be fretless, unlined. i prefer them lightweight, J-necked, and these days, passive.

    i was looking for a cheap body to mate with a cheap, fretless maple neck i just bought from the chinese --- and after perusing the internet for bodies i thought: might as well look at a cheap glarry (if only for the body) because:
    - cheap
    - lightweight
    - already 'finished'
    - more chinese stuff
    - cheap
    - i could sell the neck to someone unsuspecting
    - i could donate the parts i don't use in the modifications i'll be making
    - cheap
    - doesn't cost much


    when i went to the glarry site: i discovered that they had two fretless versions! also: the glarry description included the following (my emphasis in red):

    "will be your constant companion....pursue your own musical dreams....Buy a guitar and we will send a rich gift package....for experienced Bass Players....specially prepared for experienced stage players....it is a fine-toned instrument....has side board to taste point....Comfortable maple neck makes it easy to fly up and down the rosewood fingerboard with ease....The tremolo lets you have tons of whammy bar fun....Package Includes: 1 x Bass, 1 x Power Wire, 2 x Tools."

    what's not to like! :D after some hem-hawing and several sleepless nights, i ordered a glarry fretless bass without any hesitation whatsoever! it was delivered on the weekend when i was out of town so it sat on the porch for at least one whole day. the outside temperature was 68 degrees so i let it acclimate to the inside temperature (70 degrees) for a full 24 hours before un-boxing. :hyper: the pics:

    the box: free shipping --- it was at my place in cincinnati in 3 days --- from NJ, and obviously not brutalized by the shippers.

    the open box: wrapped nicely --- enough styrofoam to protect such a lightweight piece. i didn't expect such attention to detail --- i'll definitely treasure the box.

    the ax: (copied from the glarry site: Glarry Fretless Electric Bass Guitar Full Size 4 String for experienced Bass Players Burlywood Sunset - Glarrymusic )
    20191013_183432.jpg 20191013_182958.jpg
    Style:Fretless GP Bass
    Orientation:Right handed
    Color:Sunset; Burlywood
    Nut width:1.656 in. (42 mm)
    Scale length:34"
    Number of strings(Roundwound):4
    Pick-up Style:Split Single-Coil Pickup
    Guitar Bridge System:Fixed
    Controls:1 x Volume, 1 x Tone
    Body Material:Basswood
    Neck Material:Maple
    Fingerboard Material:Rosewood
    Dimensions:(46.2 x 12.6)"(L x W )
    Weight:6.72lb / 3.05kg

    price: $89.99 + tax. about $92 and some change :)

    the glarry-ing boo-boos:
    20191014_144911.jpg 20191014_145057.jpg
    there are at least two cosmetic imperfections: one looks to be an 'honest' part of a tree --- a small dark streak on the neck. the other is a dark patch on the back of the body below the neck joint --- it looks like it could be a 'burn' from machining but it might be real. the patch on the body has been 'finshed over' and so it will always be there. here are my choices as i see it:
    1. send it back with an anonymous nasty letter stating that i feel ripped-off.
    2. start another whining thread on TB proclaiming that no one deserves to be disrespected this way...and ask for TB support.
    3. drink some beer.
    4. keep it.
    5. consider the patches as 'identifying characteristics' for the police investigators when the ax is stolen.

    i chose to combine 3. and 4., and man, i am not sorry i did!
    mona-lisa copy.jpg

    FWIW: i did get the "power wire" and the "2 x tools." the strings are at least an inch off of the fingerboard (might be an exaggeration) so i'll either lower the strings or raise the FB...*

    * not a thing ;)

    ...my current plan:
    - a setup with the original parts --- just to 'see' what it's like to play a chunky P-bass neck for a minute
    - replace the "rosewood" p-bass neck with a maple J-bass neck
    - change out the hardware: i already have a schaller 3D bridge, i'd like light-weight tuning machines to help counter the neck dive potential, cool-looking knobs, replace the pickguard --- i'm thinking anodized pink, new strings, etc.
    - another setup with the new stuff
    - mexican lager :D
    - start a whining thread if things don't go my way and i don't get what i want :D
    - change the V/T control to two blend knobs :D

    here's the neck i plan to use. it cost $60:
    IMG_20191009_231500_hdr.jpg IMG_20191009_231535_hdr.jpg IMG_20191009_231555_hdr.jpg IMG_20191009_231648_hdr.jpg IMG_20191009_231724_hdr.jpg

    i'll use this thread to document the mods and/or 'upgrades' as i go. i'm in no hurry but i'd like to get it done, pictorialized, and gigged out before something bad happens. also: i'd like some advice/experience from other glarry bass club members on certain aspects of my effort/choices re: parts. thanks in advance! more pics of my glarry-ingly stunning, cheap-a$$ bass instrument:
    20191014_144854.jpg 20191014_145012.jpg

    i'd like to thank all of the glarry bass owners who unselfishly gave of their egos and self-respect to share their experiences with the snobs and nay-sayers before i was willing to do the same! i love you guys and i owe each of you my gratitude...but not too much, obviously. :D

    Water-tower-Thinkstock copyB.jpg
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2019
  2. CatchaCuda

    CatchaCuda Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2018
    Transfer, PA
    As soon as you mentioned that neck in the "maple fingerboard" thread, I was browsing eBay for one for my Glarry! I didn't realize Glarry sold fretless versions. The more I play mine, the more I realize giant necks are not my preference. I'm almost tempted to try to trim the neck thickness down.

    Looking forward to the updates and mods :thumbsup:
    EatS1stBassist and JRA like this.
  3. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i've 'thinned' a few (front to back) --- always with great results! i had one p-bass neck 'narrowed' (top to bottom --- by a luthier --- $80) to a j-bass neck (1.5" at the nut). money well spent! it resulted in a main player. no regrets. if you feel squeamish about it = see a luthier. good luck with your neck customization! :thumbsup:
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  4. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member


    i finally got around to fiddling with the piece:
    - the bridge is fine, but not enough travel distance to lower the strings enough to play well
    - i re-slotted the nut to lower the string action in the first few positions, but the neck will need to be shimmed to reduce the string angle more to my liking.
    - glarry installed a shim! just not enough: i used a biz card, 3-4 thicknesses = very good!
    - the heavier gauge rounds + the beefy neck = yuck!, but i intend to make it playable with the original neck before i think about installing the maple neck. who knows? --- i may come to like these beefier than :poop: necks. :laugh:

    i was impressed that the neck fit was so tight when i had to remove it. you can see that in the OP pics, i think.

    maybe i'll take some pics of the 'new' setup.
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
  5. B-Mac

    B-Mac Just like Aretha Sang... R-E-S-P-E-C-T Supporting Member

    Actually, shimming the neck is like raising the FB...but not an inch! :)
    My action is high, but not exceedingly and there is room on the saddle screws to lower them, but I'm a pick player and like my action high anyway.

    Can't wait to see how it turns out.

    I'm currently contemplating acquiring one of these.
    Wondering if the fretless neck from the 'GP' is interchangeable with the 'GJ'?
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
    EatS1stBassist and JRA like this.
  6. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    :D my original post was a bit of tongue in cheek on several counts, but my desire to have a well-playing "#1" style ax is deadly serious. i've been lucky with some 'platform' pieces and i'm hoping this will be the same. i already know i may miss the PJ arrangement (i also know that i'm not currently ambitious enough to route the glarry body for a second pu!). i'll play it as a fretless P...at least for now.

    i'm thinking it is, but it's a guess based on = cheaper to make if they are! ;)

    :thumbsup: if/when you do: please share the experience. i'm assuming (from the TB threads and posts) that a few are goofy, some are lucky --- out of the box, but that most are serviceable. i would put the one i got as being in the "serviceable" group.

    per the OP: more updates/observations:
    - side dots are not in the "fretted positions" but they are not in the correct position either...not really a problem as 'i dot my own', anyway. since the neck will eventually be removed, i may not make any new dots --- someone else may want the neck, as is.
    - the pickups and the preamp are ok --- i could gig it. i don't think i'll change them out until i get around to the maple neck install.
    - although the website called these fingerboards "rosewood" this one looks like a composite material. it looks 'too good' to be this cheap. yay!
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2019
  7. merseymale


    Oct 28, 2018
    My two were made of rosewood inlay strips, about 50 or so (!), Back to back all the way down the board…
    EatS1stBassist and JRA like this.
  8. TheDirtyLowDown


    Mar 8, 2014
    Cool! And for cheap! Keep a running total of your $$$ outlay, and update as the project continues. I salute you.

    I had a similar vision, but I failed at every stage to keep myself on a shoestring budget. So I bought myself a loaded Mexican PJ body, but then I had to start upgrading parts, and then I had to buy a different neck (fretless), and fancier low mass tuners, and have a luthier fix the neck and the setup, and on and on so that it's finally a fine instrument, and I gig with it as my backup bass, but I spent way way too much to do so. And that's money I'll never get back again because if it gets sold it gets sold at a loss. But it's a beautiful bourbon color, which is strangely apt given my late night parts purchases with a bottle nearby... ;)
    EatS1stBassist, JRA and merseymale like this.
  9. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i'm trying to picture: do you mean rosewood strips between frets? thanks.

    yes, and i'll post those expenses here.

    as i have done this from-cheap-to-great thing before: i'm personally not interested in resale value. i'm only interested in having a parts bass which is 'customized' (modified, upgraded?) to my liking. my 1990's custom-built ($3000, then) is a great ax but it weighs too much and some of the design/features are no longer valued by me....and its resale value is negligible. so my thinking/question has been: what is the least amount of money (no matter how much) do i have to spend to get what i want? my previous cheapie + parts builds/mods have consistently put me in the $300-$400 range (including the cost of the original cheap ax).

    but i'm not just slapping decent/great parts on a cheapie to make it play better: it has to conform to my current playing expectations = feel! for me the test is "can this be my #1?"
  10. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    pickguard update:

    so i ordered two, regular, p-bass pickguards and one of them arrived before i discovered in another glarry thread that it wouldn't work --- the glarry pickguard is not exactly the same shape/fit. :D i recieved a black gloss and a clear is apparently on its way even though i won't be able to use either. ha!

    so now i'm reading TB threads on pickguard "dyeing" and "painting." looks promising...i guess. :laugh:

    also: though i've filed the nut down, some, for the strings which came on it i'm going to lower it more: the shim i installed + a proper nut-job ( :D ) should get the original neck into a playing ballpark.

    i'm also looking at some pickups: maybe these:
    DiMarzio - Pickups - DP127 Split P Black - Best Bass Gear

    and a pre, maybe this one:
    Richter PB-VT Preamp - Best Bass Gear
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
    EatS1stBassist and B-Mac like this.
  11. B-Mac

    B-Mac Just like Aretha Sang... R-E-S-P-E-C-T Supporting Member

    @EatS1stBassist highly recommended these:

    Last edited: Oct 23, 2019
    pcake, Bass V, merseymale and 2 others like this.
  12. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    B-Mac and EatS1stBassist , good to know! thanks.

    i already ordered the pickups and the pre i identified in the previous post: both from best bass gear. but i won't know how that works out until they're installed...

    ...i haven't been able to work on the ax much (gigs over the weekend and family stuff this week!). i did get a partial setup going but i'll have to work more on the nut. the action is very close, but no cigar.
    Wisebass, EatS1stBassist and B-Mac like this.
  13. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    ok, so i haven't attended to this project for a few days, except this:
    as was my plan, i intend to make this glarry "rosewood" piece play before installing the cheap maple neck later.
    - shim
    - truss adjustment
    - bridge adjustment
    - nut job on the plastic nut

    while playing with the interplay of the above i was able to get the action much more in line with my preferences, although still no cigar, yet: needs more nut filing to get there. i did this work several days ago and have noticed no neck stability issues since shimming/truss-adjustment. yay!

    phone pic (compare to pic in OP):

    different angle (apologies for thumbnail dirt):
  14. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    also: the instrument has some neck dive (not as much as some). it hangs ok given my playing posture/pose, but i'm not sure whether lightweight tuning machines are worth the expense --- i won't know the difference in weight between the two necks until this one is removed and i'm not ready to do that yet (i forgot to weigh it when i installed the shim! :laugh: .)

    if i go with lightweights = probably gotoh res-o-lites. black. 'vintage' clovers.

    edit: just got the pre and pickups from best bass gear --- i'll install this weekend.
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
    EatS1stBassist and B-Mac like this.
  15. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member


    an excruciatingly fun pic of the guts while still strung: note the beautiful "burlywood" and the tiny gap between the body and neck, which the pickguard covered before removal (not a biggie! just thought i'd point it out).

    a thumbnail:

    - i'm still on the fence about the tuners
    - i may paint or dye the pickguard.

    re: the fat P neck: i really hate it. :laugh: i may jump the gun and just put the maple neck on.
  16. B-Mac

    B-Mac Just like Aretha Sang... R-E-S-P-E-C-T Supporting Member

    So is Burlywood actually wood or styrofoam encapsulated by a thin wood veneer type product?
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2019
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  17. CatchaCuda

    CatchaCuda Supporting Member

    Feb 3, 2018
    Transfer, PA
    Does the burlywood/ faux-swood combo mwah?
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  18. Bass V

    Bass V

    Dec 11, 2008
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    surprisingly, that natural finish body is pretty decent looking, it'd be a shame to hide half of it with a normal pickguard. you seem to be creative, why not customize something smaller which compliments the overall?
    EatS1stBassist likes this.
  19. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    it may be difficult to tell from the last pic, but: whatever it is, the burlywood is solid from top to bottom...it's not faux! surprised me --- it's so light.

    plenty of "mwah" after a half-a$$ed setup. but i've removed the "rosewood" fb and i'm waiting for some other parts to install the maple neck/fb...i wonder if it, too, will need shimmed?

    i'm with you on that: i'm not sure how i want to proceed with the pickguard. i can trace the thing and get a custom, or color the glarry pg myself --- or as you suggest, shape one, differently --- just not sure, right now. but the ax has to play (feel right) for me for the looks to matter. so, even though i'm trying to make it 'look cool' in some way, i'd be satisfied with a new #1 re: playability. how would you deal with (what could you accept?) the pg-screw holes left by an altered pg? asking for a friend.

    - the maple neck doesn't fit the body's pocket with the same curve, and the pickguard follows the glarry body, so: there will be gaps (small ones). what price for a gap? :D
    - i removed the glarry bridge to size-up the schaller fit: one hole (of three on the schaller) might work. i may have to fill some of the glarry holes for 'integrity' purposes.
    EatS1stBassist, CatchaCuda and Bass V like this.
  20. GretschWretch

    GretschWretch Supporting Member

    Dec 27, 2013
    East Central Alabama
    I cannot grok these necks being called "fat," but I was not expecting the aftermarket neck to fit. If something on these basses is wonky it most likely will be the neck pocket. I bought a body and the pocket is not routed symmetrically.

    If you go with the downsized pg, consider returning the screws to the exposed holes; sort of like accessorizing the top.
    EatS1stBassist likes 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.

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