New to bass repairs. Need a push in the right direction

Discussion in 'Hardware, Setup & Repair [BG]' started by ozzyspite, Jan 4, 2008.

  1. ozzyspite


    Jan 4, 2008
    Hey everyone. I just picked up an awesome early 70's fender jazz fretless that I have been fixing up (sanded/oiled the neck, installed the badass II bridge, new nut, pickup covers, etc) and have really gotten interested in getting more involved/making this a new hobby. Would you all recommend any instructional websites or dvd's or books that would be good for me? I'm looking for something that covers everything from the basic stuff to advanced. Things like like truss rod adjustment, setting intonation, installing new pickups and electronics, etc. I don't plan on "building" any basses, but just want to know how to assemble them using individual parts and how to do modifications (such as taking the frets off a neck). I'm a visual learner, so I'm going to need lots of pictures.

    Just curious, other than experience (and I'm sure a lot of trial and error), where did you all learn your skills from?

    Any suggestions you guys could offer are appreciated.

  2. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    The name you need to know is Dan Erlewine. His books on guitar maintenance and repair are easy to understand, and they're pretty much the bibles. His new "Guitar Player Repair Guide" (3rd ed.) is just out, and i've heard a lot of positive things about it. I have "How to Make Your Electric Guitar Play Great!: The Electric Guitar Owner's Manual" and it's wonderful. Amazon usually has plenty of used copies of Erlewine's books. Erlewine has also done some instructional tapes/DVDs on finishing and repair that are very helpful, but may exceed the complexity of what you want to do.

    Good online sites include, and you should have a look at (Stewart-Macdonald) as a source of information and supplies. I'm sure others will offer additional helpful references.
  3. Once you get going doing simple modifications you may find the process addictive and want to learn more about advanced mods and building from scratch -- I know I did.

    Books that are very helpful:

    Make Your Own Electric Guitar, Melvyn Hiscock

    Building Electric Guitars, Martin Koch

    Good luck and have fun!
  4. 202dy

    202dy Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2006
    Guitar Player Repair Guide by Dan Erlewine

    While at this site sign up for their biweekly email of Trade Secrets. It won't always be directly aimed toward the bass guitar. As a matter of fact, it rarely is. But the topics are always interesting and will make it easier to understand the whys and wherefores of instrument construction and repair. More importantly, it will give you some insight into how a luthier thinks.

    If you want to get totally immersed, Dan's DVD series is the way to go. It's not cheap but it covers just about everything you'll ever need to do in repair. What it doesn't cover will be a simple leap from what is already there. Highly recommended.
  5. ozzyspite


    Jan 4, 2008
    Awesome. Thanks a lot.
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