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New bass project

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Phil Mastro, Aug 13, 2005.


  1. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    Hi yall,

    I've been working on this bass lately, and I thought I'd let you guys in on the fun. Here are the specs for it:
    • 5-string
    • Bookmatched Ovangkol top and Australian Blackwood back
    • Peruvian Walnut core
    • Maple Veneer triming
    • 5-piece Walnut-Purpleheart-Wenge-Purpleheart-Walnut neck
    • Bartolini pickups and preamp
    • 34.75" scale

    Here's a drawing of my design, although it's not exactly right, cuz I made the template before drawing it in autocad, but the headstock is right, and it should give you a general idea what to expect. Hopefully it'll be done by the end of the month. Give me your impressions, good and bad.
    Thanks!

    edit: it's going to be a fretted bass, the reason I haven't drawn out the fret positions (except for the 12th and 24th) is because I have a template at school, and I had no intentions of going through all that trouble again.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    That sounds like it's going to be a good project, and an even better bass. Nice design, not quite my thing but its a good design none the less.

    Good luck with it and make sure to post pic's upon completion (or any other time).

    Zet.
     
  3. Unusual use of repetitive curves there. I like it. Sort of like that portion of the Tai Chi that talks about conquering your opponent by yielding to him...Your curves start into one arc, stop and reverse direction and go the longer way around. All to conquer the design challenge.
     
  4. JSPguitars

    JSPguitars

    Jan 12, 2004
    Grass Valley
    I like the headstock design!
     
  5. teacherguy

    teacherguy

    Feb 21, 2004
    Cincinnati, OH
    I like the design a lot!
    I reminds me of a pointy Marchlewski in a way.
    Can't wait to see progress shots of this!!

    Jon
     
  6. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    Laughing my butt off! That is a truly humorous look! :D
    Don't take that as bad critisism - it's fun, great fun. You will have a lot of people wonder what that is supposed to be, but then again: unique looks are there to make people react, right?

    The body is cool, but the headstock doesn't correspond...there's something with the ears, the stick out too much, too pointy or something. :meh:
     
  7. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    Funny hum... anyways, thanks for the feedback everyone, I got some pictures to show now. They were taken on my webcam, so they really suck, but it should still give a general idea of what's to come.
    I tried taking a pic of my headstock, but I just couldn't manage to take one where you could see anything. It's 3-layered, ovangkol-peruvian walnut-blackwood, like the body minus the maple veneer. Hope you guys like it, I'm certainly excited! :hyper:
     

    Attached Files:

  8. Zetora

    Zetora

    Aug 16, 2004
    England
    And you should be that looks one amazing body, its certainly gonna turn heads, well it turned mine lol.

    The headstock sounds good, can't quite picture it though.

    Zet.
     
  9. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    I've been having trouble with my neck...

    After patching my neck on 3 different occasions :eyebrow: :rollno: and having it still look like crap :scowl: , I've decided to make a new one and chuck the old one in the dumpster. It really was terrible. I mean I would've kept it if I thought it was still be relatively decent, but it's a total piece of crap. So the new one has the following specs (cuz I was out of the wood from the first one):

    -5-piece, Bubinga-Purpleheart-cocobolo-P-B
    -15 degree headstock
    -haven't decided on the headstock wood yet.

    I still have my fingerboard that I was planning on using, which is Macassar ebony, and I've already slotted it, so hopefully, with a little luck, my bass might be done by next wednesday. I'm crossing my fingers though.
     
  10. Phil, don't chuck it in the dumpster. Take it and use it as a reference for the small things that went well. I've done EXACTLY what you've described - put a whole lotta work into a neck having small things go wrong all the while thinking I could salvage it only to have all the small things add up to one really big pile-o-stink. Use it like that until you've got your system down then screw the first one to the wall as a warning to the other necks that failure will not be tolerated. :mad:
     
  11. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    Or use it for something else: sanding block, bridges, ect. I had bit slip in the middle of a trussrod rout on a neck for a 8 string and I was able to chop the neck down and use it on a lapsteel.
     
  12. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    alright, so it's been a while, and i've glued up my neck and fingerboard. The truss rod route turned out to be the tightest i've made yet, which kinda compensates for the scrap-wood neck #1.
    I also routed the neck pocket in the body. I also just got a new router, which i realized works about 10 million times better than my old. The pocket fit was decent, but i added a piece of veneer on one side and now the neck holds in place by itself.
    I also cut out the headstock and made the tuner holes, and i'm currently at the fingerboard radiusing stage. It's kinda going slowly cuz i'm out of rough sandpaper. I'll buy some tomorrow.
    And, of course i have a crappy webcam pick to show for. I put the bridge in place to give an idea as to what it would look like completed. And since I just glued the piece of veneer in the neck pocket, the extra is still hanging out. so there.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. Johnny Fila

    Johnny Fila Formerly "The Crusader"

    Nov 21, 2004
    Elmont, NY (near NYC)
    That thing is gonna be mint. I totally admire what you are doing.
     
  14. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    Ok, so it's been a while, and i finally managed to get some time to work on my bass today. I fretted the neck, and glued it in place, and starting carving out the neck joint until I got blisters on my fingers (which wasn't all that long).
    I took these pics on my webcam, so they suck, but still...
    The electronics cover is made from the same piece as the back. I hope you guys can see something.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  15. Mudfuzz

    Mudfuzz

    Apr 3, 2004
    WA...
    Looking good!
    What are you using to carving out the neck joint, I don't think I have ever gotten blisters from carving anything?
     
  16. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    I used small planes like these:
    From Lee Valley
    I hold them with my thumb on one side and the edge of my middle finger on the other, and that's where i got my blisters.
     
  17. Phil Mastro

    Phil Mastro

    Nov 18, 2004
    Montréal
    Finally, almost done!
    I finished shaping the neck yesterday, and managed to route the pickup cavities today, and everything seems to fit nicely. (miracles do happen!) I leveled the frets a couple of days ago, after installing the tuners and bridge and slapping strings on it.
    I still haven't installed my preamp cuz the ground wire from one of my pickups was accidentally stripped :rolleyes: I still put it in place to get an idea what it looked like though. Buying wire tomorrow and a neutrik jack, and it'll be done! Well, except for the knobs. Details shmetails...
    Anyhow, here's my latest crappy-webcam pic:
    [​IMG]

    Notice the shirt. Represeeeeent...
     
  18. JSPguitars

    JSPguitars

    Jan 12, 2004
    Grass Valley
    that thing's damn hot, man! Keep up the good work. Nice original design.
     
  19. Suburban

    Suburban

    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    It still looks fun, in its best sence!
    Really nice.
     
  20. jdThumpin'

    jdThumpin'

    Aug 16, 2005
    Ottawa
    the body turned out well :)