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Newbie Questions

Discussion in 'Accessories [DB]' started by MytBrednec, Jun 3, 2012.


  1. OK folks, I am new to this forum and new to upright basses as well and I have a few questions. First off I am not new to music. I am a mediocre rythym guitar player that knows a bunch of old county stuff (if you are familiar with Hank Williams, Ernest Tubb, Lefty Frizzell etc than you now what I am into).
    I recently got the opportunity to buy an old Cleveland American Standard upright bass and am beginning the adventure of learning how to play it. I need to purchase a case of some kind and would like some input from more experienced people on what makes a good case and how to measure the bass to know what size to order.
    I also need to have a little bit of work done to the bass as it did not come with a bridge and the end pin falls out easily. I bought an adjustable bridge and started fitting it myself and have decided to have someone else do that for me. The shop I contacted said it would be about $125 to fit the bridge. Is this a reasonable amount?
    Thanks in advance for and help!
    Shawn
     
  2. Maybe I should have added more info about the bass I have? It is a vintage American Standard, from the serial # I believe it was manufactured in 1951, I hope that helps eliminate confusion between the size of the bass I have and the New American Standard basses I have read about. Maybe they are the same size and the cases would be identical, but I just don't know.
    Thanks again,
    Shawn
     
  3. Well generally, cases, as long as they are for a 3/4 size bass, are a one size fits all kind of thing. There aren't specifically sized cases unless you get into Mooradian cases, which are nice, but I think you can get better cases for less money IMHO.
     
  4. Did I phrase something wrong? LOL. I was hoping for just a little more input from more experienced people than myself. Ben I appreciate the input. Most of the info I can find on the American Standard basses are that they tend to run toward the 7\8 size. I don't know if this affects buying a travel case or not. I would really like to know if the quote I got to fit the bridge is reasonable or not. There are not a lot of shops who do this kind of work locally, so I was hoping folks from other areas would chime in on what they have paid for similiar work. Anyway, thanks in advance
    Shawn
     
  5. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    Okay, here's some advice:

    The best way to begin the "adventure" of playing the DB is to get a teacher. For most, playing this instrument is not intuitive. A teacher will set you on the right path, help you to develop proper habits, avoid bad ones, and, importantly, avoid injury. Injury is more likely than you may think.

    You bought a bass with no bridge and with a failing endpin. Did you have a luthier check the bass before you purchased it? I'm guessing that you didn't. So right now, it's hard to tell if you have something that's reasonable and cost-effective to repair or an instrument that would cost a small fortune to restore to playing condition. How about some pictures?

    Where do you live? That information would help us to guide you to a qualified luthier.

    Yes, $125 is reasonable for a qualified double-bass luthier to properly fit a bridge. It's not known whether you bought one with the correct foot spacing, etc. The setup of a DB is crucial. It may be that much more needs to be done beyond just fitting a bridge (e.g., planing/dressing the fingerboard, adjusting the nut).

    I suggest you take the bass to a qualified luthier and have a full assessment done. Unless you are trained and/or quite talented, working on a DB is not a DIY project.

    Most "3/4" cases will work. I assume you're talking about a soft, padded case. There are many threads here about cases. You would do well to pull up a chair and use the search function here as it will lead you to a wealth of information. Cases can be purchased from a number of on-line real bass shops. They are available at various price-points.

    Take a look here even though it's after the fact.
     
  6. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I had an old American Standard, and it fit in most cases. It was snug, but it fit. Yes, $125 is in the ballpark for a bridge fitting.
     
  7. Chris Symer

    Chris Symer

    Dec 13, 2009
    Seattle,Wa.
    You can also check the Lemur Music website and look at the cases there. They have a chart with measurements to get you in the ballpark for fitting your bass.
     
  8. I made a few mistakes in buying a bassn assuming my knowledge of guitars would do me fine in finding a decent beginners bass. Asit turns out, I believe I did VERY well. I now own a 1951 American Standard that I paid $200 for, so if I have to spend a little money on the bass, I will.
    I live near Kansas City, MO. I know of KC Strings but have not visited with them yet. There is also a small violin shop near me that quoted the bridge fitting. I want to get a case bought before it goes to the shop, because I really doubt bouncing around in the back of my pick up unprotected would be good for it!:smug: thanks again for the help!
    Shawn
     
  9. A couple of quick photos off of my phone.
     

    Attached Files:

  10. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    Seems you did quite well. I suggest that you have the bridge done by a real DB luthier.

    P.S.-- What's that hanging down from the G-side f-hole?
     
  11. Greg Clinkingbeard

    Greg Clinkingbeard Commercial User

    Apr 4, 2005
    Kansas City area
    Black Dog Bass Works
    KC Strings will treat you right. Aiden is an amazing luthier so if you choose to have more work done he is the one to go to.
    They normally have a good stock of Chinese bags which are very nice. Ask about the heavy one with all the handles. They may or may not have backpack straps. A 3/4 would fit your bass well.

    Congrats on the bass!
     
  12. Greg thanks for the info, look for a pm on another local violin shop, maybe you have heard of them and can give a little insight whether they are any good or not?

    drurb, I believe you are looking at a piece of twine the previous owner had tied to the sound post. With no tension on the strings because of the lack of a bridge, the sound post was just rolling around inside the body so I hooked the twine and let it dangle out the f hole.
    Thanks again for the help everyone! I am getting pretty excited about jumping into this new learning project!
    Shawn
     

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