Painted DBs-any thought?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Fluke, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. Fluke


    Jul 20, 2002
    I might be getting a really ugly(cheap grainless wood, currentl unlacquered), but great playing DB soon and i've been thinking of painting/spraying the body and neck matte white, with the fretboard and bridge black. I know that it would look really awesome but what are your thoughts on this? What kind of paint and application method should i use? Does it affect the tone much? Any long term issues(paint wear, colored marks?) Also, post any pictures of unusually painted DBs that you have.
  2. mje


    Aug 1, 2002
    Southeast Michigan
    Paint has lots of pigment, which adds weight, which dulls tone. And white shows dirt. :D

    If you plan on amplifiying it and playing slap or bluegrass, go ahead.
  3. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    I think a heavy oil-based latex would be quite nice. Don't forget to put down several coats of primer first.

    You know, now that I think about it, how about some ceramic tiling. Now that would be cool!

    I think Time-Life books has a series on "How to Paint, Tile or Cement Your Contrabass at Home". You should check it out first.
  4. I would not suggest ceramic tiling. The risk of overheating and explosion is way too high if they start coming off..
    Rubber coating used for submarines would dampen the ultrasonic waves...and would look nicer too.

  5. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    See, like I've always said, the Fins are so much more sonically-advanced than Americans.

    Well put Arto.
  6. Henry


    Sep 26, 2002
    Proprietor of Superior Bassworks
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Anyone for the Yamaha "Silent" Bass ? ;)
  8. Go the route of veneer and make yo bass look real fancy.

  9. You might try some of that radar absorbing stealth technology paint--but with stealth tech you might never find the thing after putting it down.
  10. WHATSKILLINGWORTH, yes I might and I would, if I only had a way to get it. As You know, export of stealth technology as well as space technology, not to mention advanced computer technology and bass coating materials is strictly prohibited by U.S. law.


    PS. I have had my problems remembering where I put my Bass down even without stealth paint...
  11. Sorry that all you got was sarcasm as an answer, so far, with the exception of the "" answer.

    It's just that what you're proposing is so ridiculous and harmful that most folks here probably can't believe you aren't trying to yank their collective chain.

    Asking "Does it affect the tone much?" probably has all of these jokers laughing so much that they can't resist answers such as they gave.

    I'll give you a straight, simple straight answer... "Yep".

    Make that "Yep, and not in any good way".

    Truly, you should visit and ask those questions. Only a dyed-in-the-wool Rockabilly player would ever consider putting paint on a bass in any way, shape, or form, because of what it does to the sound of the bass.

    With as much as they amplify their basses, and all of the bass guitar effects that some of them use, nearly all the "upright bass" characteristics are lost anyway, so a little automotive paint doesn't hurt much.

    Even then, nobody paints the fingerboard (there is no "fretboard", it's a "fingerboard") or puts any kind of finish whatsoever on the bridge.

    If you want a black bridge, you can visit and buy a carbon-fiber bridge, by Moses Graphite, for about $130.

    No paint will stay on a fingerboard very long, not even epoxy paint.

    If you're playing heavy slap-bass, "not very long" probably means about 3-4 weeks, unless it's thick enough to chip, which will reduce that into days instead of weeks.

    If you don't have an ebony fingerboard, you can dye the wood. Even though ebony is a black wood, not all of it is all-black. It's sometimes dyed when that is the case. sells fingerboard dye. I seem to recall someone commenting that it's nothing more than leather dye, such as you can get at any shoe store a lot cheaper.

    If you have a dark brown fingerboard, it's probably rosewood. Dyeing it would be a shame, though it IS sometimes done.

    Some manufacturers put a slick finish on the necks, especially on "student" basses. This generally gets sanded off very soon, and the neck just re-sealed with Danish oil or something that will leave a smooth, but non-slick finish.

    Sweaty hands tend to stick on slick surfaces when you're trying to slide to another note. You certainly wouldn't want to paint the neck.

    The Neck's appearance may not suit you specifically because it's been sanded, so it will play better.

    Generally, I think acryllic auto paint is used on bass bodies, and I believe it's thinned quite a bit more than when it's used on cars. Or maybe acryllic is the kind of paint that's NEVER used... I can't remember for sure. Best to check it out for yourself on

    I've seen a couple of painted basses on Ebay, both with gloss-white bodies.

    You might want to visit where they sell factory-painted basses, complete with flame jobs, etc.
  12. Tim Ludlam

    Tim Ludlam

    Dec 19, 1999
    Carmel, IN
    Okay, so Barefoot and Hairy proves there actually are adults amongst us.
  13. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member the thread was titled as it was and with this specific question included - I think it got the answers it deserved!! ;)

    I think the posters expressed their "thoughts " quite accurately and with admirable restraint!
  14. Yeah, but it was a genuine request for information, from someone who genuinely needed it.

    As I said, in this particular forum, everyone probably thought it was a joke, though it wasn't.

    TB often seems to be full of people who haven't been a Newbie for so long that they can't remember what it was like.

    I have a son with an IQ of 170. Sometimes he does the most BONEHEAD things, and makes the stupidest decisions I've ever seen. :meh:

    When he does that, and it amazes/disgusts me, my wife often reminds me that it's been so long since I was a teenager that I've forgotten what it's like to be one. I never disagree with her on that point.

    Of course, a man never has the last word in an argument. Anything he says after the woman has had The Last Word is the beginning of another argument. :rolleyes:
  15. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    How is "any thoughts" - a genuine request for information? People gave their thoughts - they were answering the question as it was put or "phrased"!!
  16. Ahhh! NOW I see! "Sussex, England"!

    In the USA, that would be considered as being an actual specific request for enlightenment.

    As we say in Texas, "You ain't from aroun' here, are ya, Boy?" :D

    There is also the multi-cultural nature of the International Network to help cloud things.;)
  17. Interesting how this thread is becoming a little defensive. I meant no disrespect to Fluke--I am a long way from being a grizzled old veteran myself. My somewhat warped sense of humor was activated by some of the other comments and I was simply responding to them.

    One of the things I enjoy about this forum is the sense of humor most folk have. Are some answers a little "smart--s"? Sometimes, still those guys often dispense some of the best advice (think fuqua).

  18. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    How 'bout these? (May the gods forgive me...)

  19. The description says "sound of each string will provide a marvelous color to any piece you play."

    As Spock would say... "In-DEED".

    I'm not sure that's the kind of color I want in any piece I play...

    I just can't feature primary colors on double basses, even if it isn't painted-on.

    The yellow one looks more like my blonde than "Sunshine Yellow", but man, the purple one is... well, PURPLE!
  20. Fluke


    Jul 20, 2002