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P-Bass with a maple body?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by cowsgomoo, Feb 18, 2005.


  1. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    UK
    I'm bidding on a P-Bass maple body on eBay... the plan is to put a Seymour Duncan Quarter Pound pickup in there because I play with a pick and I'm looking for extreme zing :)

    so, my question is, am I right in thinking a maple body will be likely to zing me up good and proper???

    has anyone here built/used/owned a maple bodied P-Bass? is it nice?? :) would it sound much like a tradiitonal P or might it change the tone beyond recognition?? :bassist:
     
  2. spc

    spc

    Apr 10, 2004
    South of Boston
    My linited experience with maple bodies can be summed up in one word:HEAVY.
     
  3. dgce

    dgce

    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    I second that HEAVY! The marriage of the maple bod and maple neck (fingerboard as well?) will result in what will likely be a very bright sounding instrument. The Seymour QP will add some serious output and tonal muscle by passive instrument standards for sure. Sounds like you've got yr "zing" and then some.

    However! Ever notice how basses with maple bodies tend to be shrunken down in size or are laminated to lighter woods, or serve only as a pretty top? A full size P body made of solid maple has GOT to be a back breaker. Shop for a super thick strap if you win that auction, pal!

    r
     
  4. smperry

    smperry Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    My Hondo Longhorn has a Precision pickup and a maple body.

    [​IMG]

    It definitely has "zing" or "ping" but also has really deep but natural lows instead of maybe low-mid grunt. To me, it's like a normal P, but a bit tighter and warmer...I'm not good at describing sound, but I like it a great deal! I like maple a lot...it's also on my (slightly more high-end) Ritter bass.

    Like the previous posters, I agree that a full size Precision body could be heavy.

    Marshall
     
  5. kobass

    kobass Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Outside Boston
    I own two Pedulla basses that are all or mostly maple. One is the Thunderbolt. It has a maple body/maple neck/birdseye maple fretboard and a AAA Flamed Maple top. The other is a Pedulla Buzz. Maple neckthrough/maple wings/coated ebony fretboard. Both are four-strings. Both basses weigh in at just over eight pounds. I wouldn't consider either one to be small in size, and I wouldn't consider them to be "zingy" either. It may be the Bart pups/preamp (soapbars on the TB and p/j on the Buzz), but they can produce a variety of tones, many of which would be considered full, round and warm with a nice growly midrange. Just my $.02. YMMV.


    :)
     
  6. dgce

    dgce

    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    Yeah but lets face it, Pedullas are pretty high-end stuff to compare to a Frankenstein P bass (think US muscle car vs. swanky BMW).Once, I checked out a black Pedulla Buzz Bass (the wood?--who knows!) that had just a single Bart P-pickup. Nice, but tonally limited, right? No way, that thing was fantastic! This was no P-bass! This Pedulla was amazingly versatile despite its single pickup. My guess is that cowsgomoo's maple P bass with single Seymour QP pickup will not have the tonal range of yr Pedullas though it will likely be one kick-ass bass.
     
  7. flak44

    flak44

    Nov 4, 2004
    Kent, UK
    good luck on bidding on it, that is if you out bid me! I will say though seller has just brought it off ebay USA cheap and selling with a profit
     
  8. smperry

    smperry Moderator Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    Yeah, I should've mentioned that my Ritter is 9 pounds and has a very nice growly midrange too. Pickups and construction make a huge difference. My Hondo cheapie has a midrange too - but it's more of an upper midrange, and I like it.

    Marshall
     
  9. toytech

    toytech

    Mar 22, 2004
    San Leandro
    My fretless Frankenjazz has a maple body, it is pretty damn heavy but nothing a good strap won't fix. But the tone with active duncans and an ebony board... awsome.
     
  10. dgce

    dgce

    Jun 17, 2001
    Massachusetts, USA
    So, what kind of neck have you got picked out? How about bridge and other hardware?
     
  11. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    UK
    well, assuming flak44 doesn't outbid me :) (flak44, let's try not to push the price up too much for each other :) ) the plan is to have a maple neck/fingerboard and standard hardware... I'm not convinced a non-standard bridge like a Badass would give significant benefits in the 'Zinginess' stakes, so i'd rather it looked like an understated P-bass

    the plan is to assemble it as and when suitable bits become available, so maybe i'll find a Fender neck on ebay or maybe i'll get a Warmoth or a Mighty Mite neck... do Warmoth do traditional 21 fret P-Bass necks without the overhanging bit?? (thanks for the extra fret, Warmoth but i'd like a more traditional look)

    for the other stuff, I have a tortoiseshell pickguard that I think would look nice on there... :) and a set of decent brand tuners like Schaller... just to keep it simple as a working robust zing-machine :)
     
  12. bwbass

    bwbass

    May 6, 2002
    WA
    "Traditional" Fender bass necks have 20 frets, with no overhang. Yes, we do that - no charge, just ask.

    As for maple bodies, hard maple ala Rickenbacker is indeed very bright and heavy. It's the same stuff we use for necks, and we do make bodies out of it.

    Soft maple, on the other hand, is lighter and a lot like alder in many respects. It's used for solid bodies by Dingwall and Pedulla, among others. The only soft maple bodies we ever do are solid flame or quilt maple and cost a fortune, but then again, it's important for some people to know that the inside of their control cavity is figured too. ;)
     
  13. cowsgomoo

    cowsgomoo gone to Longstanton Spice Museum

    Feb 8, 2003
    UK
    thanks for clearing that up... I meant 20 frets :) I only have 20 fingers & toes so things get a little hazy at those high numbers :D


    and with my terrible soldering, I don't want my control cavity to be a tourist attraction :) (MOVE ALONG FOLKS, NUTHIN TO SEE!!)
     
  14. I recently bought a Jazz body on Ebay that looks like maple (also has a quilted burnt sienna burst top). I think it's an Eastern maple which is considerably lighter than most maple basses I've played (Spector, Pedulla etc.) If the one you're bidding on is one of the Mighty Mite bodies often on Ebay, it should be fairly lightweight. Mine has a nice resonance to it but not sure who makes it.The seller was in Singapore.

    I personally don't care for the more dense maple for 2 reasons. The weight and the overly bright tone. Let us know the outcome if you end up getting it.
     
  15. DubDubs

    DubDubs

    Aug 23, 2004
    Los Angeles
    If you want lots and lots of zing and bite maple is the way to go. Just get a nice strap becuase maple is heavy.
     
  16. Commreman

    Commreman Faith, Family, Fitness, and Frets Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2005
    New Jersey
    I have a 1990 Spector NS2 that is all maple. Very Heavy. I've developed an Austrian accent just playing it for three or four sets a night (maybe I'll run for governor of Kah-lee-forn-ya). It is loaded with an EMG PJ set, and has a tone that will cut through kryptonite! Very Very BRIGHT!