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New Piano Lid Fretless

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by 88tuner, Jan 13, 2003.

  1. So you didn't like my first bass (piano lid fretless).

    Click here to visit it's page

    Take a look at #2. It's not too far yet. I'm waiting on all my parts from Carvin and Stewmac. The woods are quilted Mahogany, Maple, pond soaked walnut, and a bubinga fretboard.


    Go to my web page below to see more.
  2. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Sorry we (and I in particular) were so hard on you the first time around. Your first effort showed a great deal of enthusiasm but very little in the way of research into the real needs of bassists. Looks like you've come a long way.

    Great job installing a truss rod in the neck. The truss rod is not there simply as "steel reinforcement", though it does offer that. It is used to adjust the curvature of the neck to allow the strings to vibrate openly. Each player has different style of playing and some can get by with less curvature than others. A perfectly straight neck is not good on a bass, as the strings vibrate quite a lot and will click and clack on the fingerboard if the neck is perfectly straight.

    Looks nice so far, hope the body style is more "conventional" than the last one. The horns look a little close to the neck for playing, but otherwise it looks like it's shaping up nicely. What kind of pickups/electronics do you have in mind?
  3. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    hey 88tuner, welcome to talkbass :)

    if you're going to make a habit of making basses, might i suggest a bit of advice - make sure that function dictates form _always_, if not completely, then at least as a primary consequence. they call it an "instrument" for a reason - it needs some level of precision and predictability, meaning it has to perform its job consistently and predictably well.
  4. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    i think you'd be surprised how much business you could get here..I know other luthiers with more conventional designs do ! Good luck !
  5. I've not noticed the first bass playing any different than other bass guitars I've played-with the exception of the tone. I tried to make it comfortable for me because I like to sit on a stool and play. Also, I located the volume and tone on top so I have easier access. Most of my playing is with symphonic band so I need quick access without having to reach across the strings. I learned alot from the first round.

    With this 2nd bass, the picture you see above is not quite what it will look like when the neck is cut. There should be plenty of room for the hands.

    As for electronics and hardware, I've gone with all Carvin parts. I opted for the prewired dual pickup combo. I believe I went with the humbuckers but I can't remember.
  6. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    did you source any wood from a piano for this one ? i am asking seriously...

    structurally, do you build in the neck angle and then carve the top or do you plan on using a raised fingerboard ?

    how much are you gonna charge for that puppy, or are you going to auction it ?
  7. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    3 piece body wings ?

    why bubinga fingerboard ? Not a wood many pick for that use. Just curious.:)
  8. Marcus Johnson

    Marcus Johnson

    Nov 28, 2001
    I'd like to know more about the "pond soaked walnut"!
  9. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    "pond soaked " or any other water logged wood is actually nothing new.

    All of the violins of the cremonese school (stradivarious, Amati, Guarneri) used woods that were water logged at some time.

    THink about it, 400 years ago, lumber, in the form of logs was transported via rivers and barges; the boats would move the floating lumber to wherever it was destined to go.

    The great violin luthier masters didn't use wet wood, but they did source thier materials from dealers that transported via waterways...

    there is also great debate as to the minerals the woods imbibed while in the water and whether or not this imparted any sonic characteristics to the woods.
  10. You might check again on the Bubinga. Do a search on Google for tone wood bubinga.

    Bubinga (Guibourtia Demeusei)
    A very strong stiff wood used primarily for bass necks and in laminations.
    Used by Rickenbacker for fretboards. As a bass neck, it brings bright
    midrange and a thick well defined bottom.

    Three main reasons for Bubinga. It's hard and stiff, it's red and will match the mahogany, and the grain looks really cool.

    I will use a raised fretboard like I did on the first bass. I'll do the cuts in the neck as soon as I get the truss rod in. I figure it will be easier to route while it's square. You can look at my web page to see a closer picture of the neck with the neck drawn in the wood.

    I decided against piano wood for this one. I just gutted a huge upright that has 6 huge maple beams in the back as well as 5 solid blocks of maple. I figure I can get 5 guitars out of that soundboard alone. My next bass will feature an entire neck made from one piece of that soundboard.
  11. Well. The walnut was on a friends farm since he was a child. He told me that he remembered lightning striking the tree when he was a child and his father rolling the logs off in the pond. they forgot about the wood for 20 years until the pond dried up a few summers ago. They took the logs out and had them milled into 5/4 X 12 planks. He gave me several pieces of it.

    Walnut is one of those woods that can be cured in water. Most wood is dried in a kiln. After the wood is dired, the correct amount of moisture is then added back to the wood.

    As for a price. I'll have to wait and see. The first bass is going to Italy. I didn't do too bad on it. Enough to finance the next two bass guitars.
  12. The body is roughed out now. I plan on wedging the bottom of the neck as pictured in the 2nd picture.



    I'd would be very interested to hear a reaction to a wedged middle section.
  13. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    ric uses rosewood for their fretboards. just fyi.
  14. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    yes, i am familiar with the tonal qualities of bubinga; i think my remark was geared towards its use as a fingerboard material ; you just do not see it that often.

    as far as the wedge, Ken Smith does a wedge but not inverted like the one you propose. Does it add stability to the lamination ?
  15. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    oh, i forgot. i think the wedge would look cool !
  16. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    yeah i know about the Ric's. I am not trying to make a big deal out of it, just a remark !

    so, those wings look solid; are they ?
  17. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    stand corrected; two piece ?
  18. Solid as in Hardwood? They're solid maple and quilted mahogany. The mahogany will be the wood on the front. I'll also use it on the back for the wireing cover. I'll try not to make it look like an oil slick this time. HEHE
  19. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    no no no, not solid as in "hardwood" ; solid as in one piece wings.

    one piece wings are often referred to as "solid" instead of being laminates - meaning walnut with a maple top and back for example...

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