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Non-standard 34"+ European measure??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bob Gollihur, Oct 29, 2000.


  1. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    Is there a metric European bass scale standard in the neighborhood of 34.25 inches?

    Reason I ask, is that the Bulgarian shop that makes the carved URBs I am importing and selling made me a sample electric jazz-style bass, and the scale length is slightly greater than 34". I am considering having them carve cherry bodies and maple necks to my specification that I will finish and complete with good quality hardware and electronics, to sell in short runs. I seem to recall seeing 34.25" listed as a scale length on a European-made bass, but can't remember where.

    I took the bass out on last night's gig and played it extensively; the 34"+ scale didn't bother me, and I really liked the feel of the slim neck -- I'll pose that question to y'all -- would a 34.25 scale length put you off; would you prefer a 34, or if longer, a 35, but not in-between?
     
  2. Bob, my repair guy here in Turkey sees a lot of Bulgarian guitars and basses (most are dreadful, some are quite spectacular!). Scale length can be quite arbitrary. Your scale converts to 87 cm, suggesting rounding up to the nearest cm.

    Andy
     
  3. rllefebv

    rllefebv

    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    34.25 shouldn't pose any problems. I would presume that fret spacing would be adjusted accordingly :)
     
  4. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    Thanks, Andy

    Realizing that I have a tape with metric marking, it looks like the measure could be 91 cm, depending on its (and my) accuracy. Unusual.

    No doubt there are some miserable instruments as well as good ones -- it seems like lack of exposure to the world at large as well as availability and financial constraints in obtaining parts are a part of the equation.

    However, I am encouraged by the woodworking skills and efforts to please I see in the URBs they do for me, and in this electric bass -- execution of some things are eccentric -- they even made the pickups (rather low output but great tone) and pickguards from scratch. But the bass has a good heart and I enjoyed playing it last night. I think that a combination of their wood working abilities, inexpensive wood (they have their own sawmill!) plus more modern parts sourced from the rest of the world could produce a nice instrument. We'll see.
     
  5. eli

    eli Mad showoff 7-stringer and Wish lover Supporting Member

    Dec 12, 1999
    NW suburban Chicago
    I can't imagine 34.25" being distinguishable from 34".

    But to tell the scale, I suggest measuring from the nut to the 12th fret, then multiplying by two. Bridges ARE adjustable, right?
     
  6. Bob 34" is the aproximate scale length for 1/4 scale upright basses. It is interesting that Leo Fender would pick this scale, but when you string through the body these 1/4 scale strings would work on his basses. I have just finished restoring a 1/2 scale upright bass which is amplified. This scale length 38" is perfect for a EURB it still sounds lake a bass and is easy to hall around. My next try will be to build a 1/2 size EURB. This is just a hobby to me as I am retired. Are the carved EURB on your website? Iwould like ti see a picture of them.
     
  7. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
  8. Thanks Bob I will go take a look.
     
  9. Hi, Andy D, how ya doin'? I did'nt know ya visited here too. Gave me quite a surprise to see your name up there. I better keep on topic or they'll shift me.
    If a neck is slim and not too "chunky", then 35" is no problem, and the majority of players would'nt even notice it unless you told them. Good scale for a 5 or 6 string, not really necessary for a 4 in my opinion. Bob G, thanks for the screen saver man, it's cool. Andy.."U* Y** H***"!
     
  10. "doin'? I did'nt know ya visited here too. "

    I do indeed. But not so often lately due to pressure of work. I have been here for nearly a year...

    Bob, I think there is something wrong with the bit of my brain that does arithmatic., so don't take this as gospel, but 91 cm works out to 35.8".....that's quite a scale...I am sure you would notice you were playing a scale of nearly 36"!

    Andy
     
  11. nanook

    nanook

    Feb 9, 2000
    Alaska
    I would be glad to field test one for you.
     
  12. Bob Gollihur

    Bob Gollihur GollihurMusic.com

    Mar 22, 2000
    New Joisey Shore
    Big Cheese Emeritus: Gollihur Music
    Thanks; I think if I embark upon this venture with them that I'll specify the defacto standard 34" scale. With a well built 4 string, I don't think there's any significant advantage to a longer scale.