Need advice: multiple fretless basses with different scales

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Philbiker, Feb 26, 2004.

  1. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    I just got my second fretless, a Brice 6 string. It's nice, sounds and looks pretty good. It's not great quality, but it's good enough for now. It's nowhere near the quality of my Dean Edge 5 fretless, also made in Korea.

    Anyways, I'm having trouble intonating. If I'm not looking, I'm always flat, and I hit the end of the neck looking for Bb and F. :( Should I be concerned here? The 35" Dean was my first ever fretless and I'm just getting comfortable intonating that.

    Basically I want to hear from your fretless players, if I work at this, is there hope that I can get used to the multiple scale lenghts on different basses? Or should I just sell one of these, admit my mistake, and get matching ones. How do you deal with it?

    BTW both of these basses are unlined. :crying: :bawl:
  2. Philbiker,
    The obvious/best answer would be to stick with one scale, but yes, it is possible to get used to playing fretless on different scales. If you have spent a bit of time with them, your muscle memory seems to adapt fairly quickly when switching.

    You must use a lot of the same intonation tricks that you'd use on any fretless, constantly checking your intonation with open strings (to compare pitches), harmonics (same thing).

    Practice each differently scaled bass one after the other each practice session and use easy to hear and useful intervals such as octaves, fifths, arrpegios before playing other songs/material. Go slow. You'll find it far easier than you think if you do the above. I'm sure you'll get other good tips from full time fretless players. I use a few different scales (34, 32, 30) in studio sessions and with a little peeking it gets easier!
  3. appler

    appler Guest

    I don't really play much fretless electric, but I play double bass at school and for some projects (lots of different uprights) and it just takes a little while to get used to different sized basses. All you need to do is practice, it'll come to you.