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Ok, I have to ask it: WHY IS WEIGHT OF THE BASS SUCH A PRIORITY!?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by seang15, Apr 2, 2013.


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  1. seang15

    seang15

    Aug 28, 2008
    Cary NC
    I don't get the whole weight thing. Ok twenty to thirty pound instrument, over a three hour gig might be difficult to manage.

    But people calling ten pounds heavy!? And the first question regarding a used Bass listed is its weight!? Jeez folks.

    Coupled with the irony the bassist is often the largest in the band, it just strikes me as very confusing and ironic.

    :confused:

    Comments?

    Edit: I am a pretty big dude. I don't mean to open that can of worms, offend, etc. different topic :) it's periphery to this convo at best thanks.
     
  2. Devo-lution

    Devo-lution

    Jun 24, 2009
    I can imagine people suffering from back pains searching for lighter basses...
     
  3. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    Have you ever played a 4 hour gig with a 12+lb bass?

    Try it and then do the same with a similar style 8lb-er.
     
  4. lowfreq33

    lowfreq33

    Jan 27, 2010
    Nashville
    Endorsing Artist: Genz Benz Amplification
    Depends how often you play, and for how long. If you do a 45 minute set once every two weeks it doesn't matter. 5-6 nights a week, 4 sets a night, it starts to take a toll. I've never weighed my bass, but it is on the heavy side, and I do feel it in my shoulder at the end of the week.
     
  5. Just because you don't get it doesn't make it stupid or a conundrum. Not everyone is built like a linebacker or hitting the gym daily.

    My NS-2000/5 was about 11-12 lbs. Even with a fat strap, that thing killed my shoulder & lower back over a 4-5 hour gig. Take into account that an involuntary action when playing is to pull down on the bass a bit, so you're adding a couple lbs of force there, without even thinking about it. That's 12-15+ lbs sitting on 1 joint for 4 hours. It adds up.

    Bass players aren't always the largest in the band. We're quite average, most of the time. Some big guys will tend to play bass, just because they're daunted by small fingerboards with their large hands.

    Personally, I don't want a beast of a bass when I have to stand on stage and move around to entertain a crowd.
     
  6. johnson79

    johnson79

    Jan 8, 2010
    Lancaster, PA
    My first bass was a Peavey T40 which weighed at least 12 pounds. I had a cheap nylon strap which felt like it was cutting my arm off.

    Some older guys have back problems which is reason enough to want a light bass.
     
  7. JimmyM

    JimmyM

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Ampeg Amps, EMG Pickups
    You just answered your own question. If I were a big dude I doubt I'd care as much either. And there was a time I didn't care. Somewhat heavy basses with a little thin seatbelt strap was how I rolled for a long time. Then I turned 40.
     
  8. ma4rk

    ma4rk

    Jun 28, 2012
    Sydney, Australia
    Judging by your profile pic, you look like a fairly young-ish fella so instrument weight isn't probably an issue & like me, you prefer a heavy instrument. Let's meet up back here in 20 years when our bodies well on their way to decaying & I'm sure we'll both be praising lighter basses :)
     
  9. parsons

    parsons

    Feb 22, 2008
    Maryland
    Time in the saddle. An hour or two at a time with a 9lbs bass is bearable. An hour or two with 11-12lbs is rough.
     
  10. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Nov 5, 2005
    This - I'm guessing the OP hasn't...


    - georgestrings
     
  11. Judging by your profile pic, I think this one's the right weight for you. ;)

    41SjythWvYL.
     
  12. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    This. Geez, why don't some people understand that strain = stress x time and it is also cumulative over the days, weeks, months and years?

    Whippersnappers! ;)
     
  13. I'm 62 years old and have no problem with my 11 pound Stingray or 11.5 Fender P on innumerable long gigs. Just use a wide Levy strap and it's no big deal. I've been gigging since '66 and never once asked about the weight of an instrument. True, I have been fortunate with back and neck issues, but I do work at it. Oh yeah, I'm 5'9" and 160 lbs.
     
  14. Turtle71

    Turtle71 Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2009
    Madison, WI
    I don't have to play a lighter bass, but the way I see it, if I can play a lighter bass, and not lose anything tone or quality wise, then why punish my back with a heavier instrument?
     
  15. Matt R.

    Matt R.

    Jul 18, 2007
    Huntsville AL
    I don't really see weight as a big issue either, especially if the bass is well balanced and you don't have to support the neck too much.
     
  16. shawshank72

    shawshank72

    Mar 22, 2009
    Canada
    i used to not care.
    Now with chronic back problems i do.
     
  17. Mastermold

    Mastermold Supporting Member

    Balance is as important as weight and I bet the reason your basses are still comfortable to play at the weight they are is they're well balanced.
     
  18. gregmon79

    gregmon79 I did it for the muff... Supporting Member

    Dec 20, 2012
    Chicago IL
    Quite honestly, I'm 33 years old and after about 3 hours straight of jamming with my ATK 300 by ibanez, my back is bumpin. And not in a good way. I can now see why I've seen those straps that go around your whole upper body practically for support. It doesn't help I have arthritis in my lower back either. If I could get my bass in a lighter body I would. But wouldn't that take away from everything the bass is?
     
  19. rzpooch

    rzpooch

    Nov 14, 2007
    Bonney Lake Wa
    It only matters on talkbass...lol...I guess I better put on my "flame" suit.
     
  20. Smallmouth_Bass

    Smallmouth_Bass

    Dec 29, 2005
    Canada
    I agree. I don't even gig that often and am not that old, but I do have a small frame and have had a couple of back issues in the past. Basses just don't need to be over 10 lbs anymore.
     

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