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Post pics of inlayed Fretless basses!!

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by John Ruiz, Apr 30, 2003.


  1. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    I was wondering why I rarely see fretless basses with much inlaying done, and I don't know if it is a tone detriment, or that an inlay would be torn up on a fretless, but I am curious! Plus it's always nice to look at pretty basses!! :D
     
  2. Here is mine. It is only a small inlay and has been placed past the end of where the 24th fret would be so it won't get in the way of my playing.[​IMG]
     
  3. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    that is a VERY nice looking bass!!
     
  4. godoze

    godoze

    Oct 21, 2002
    Is that a Warrior ?
     
  5. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    I drool over this Jerzy Drozd on a pretty regular basis! :D :eek:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. godoze

    godoze

    Oct 21, 2002
    that bass reminds me of a Spector that has been bent out of shape.

    I do however like the inlay.
     
  7. The bass is a Sei Bass built by the most excellent Martin Petersen in Camden Town London.

    His work is amongst the very best and yes, I am biased:bassist:

    Matthew
     
  8. alembicfive

    alembicfive

    Jan 17, 2003
    USA
    This is the reason you do not see alot of inlay work on fretless basses.....this was taken from the Alembic web site, and they say,

    "On a fretless bass, we recommend no inlays, since as you slide over different materials, the tone changes."
     
  9. Prime Mover

    Prime Mover

    Feb 16, 2003
    TN, USA
    Yummy!
     
  10. Looks kinda like those Schecter basses... Very cool though!
     
  11. I agree with the above quote which is why I had the inlay placed in a part of the fretboard that would not be played on. I use it to play live twice a week and where my inlay is placed it does not effect the sound.

    However sometimes I think that there is a place for a compromise on the issue. The Jerzy Drozd above is a peice of art and a showpeice for the builder. The person who ends up buying it may well be a collector who will not play it in a recording or live situation where tonal differences will be noticed.

    On the other hand a bassist might buy it who wants to play a beautiful bass knowing that the inlay could effect the sound, but accepting the compromise to his sound at gigs or in the studio. However I would say that if someone can afford this or a similar "show" bass it is probably not their only bass so it will not be used all of the time.

    In the end, I think it is a wonderful showpeice for the builder, proved by the number of times it gets posted with people drooling over it. This is all a good advertisment for Jerzy and has probably resulted in a number of orders for "less arty" basses.

    Additionally, sometimes a builder wants to create a bass to show off his skill and I for one like looking at these basses. Lets appreciate the skill, design flair etc that bass builders have and realise that maybe not all basses are built to be played by serious gigging/recording players.

    Just my 0.2c worth

    Matthew
     
  12. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    Connecticut
    Strange but true: I had a dream last night that I stole a Pedulla Pentabuzz with no lines and a gigantic ornamental inlay on the fretboard and hid it in an alley. Does that count for anything?
     
  13. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    I think the tonal differences might be pretty cool, possibly. I certainly wouldn't want that to be only bass, but the idea of instruments where some factor has a weird effect on tone interests me.

    Adam Jones, guitarist for Tool, has either one or two of these rare Les Pauls with a "metallic greenburst" paint job. The paint had metal in it, and had a bizarre effect on the guitar's tone, so the line was discontinued. The average guy who wants an LP wants it to sound like an LP, so nobody wanted these things. But Adam found a couple and fell in love the unusual tone they have. So, maybe, the effects of inlays on tone could produce unnatural sounds that actually sound good. Maybe not, just a thought. It would be an interesting experiment, though I don't have that kind of cash!
     
  14. No doubt people like Jerzy Drozd look at an unlined fretless and see a blank canvas. I love complex inlay work, it can really make an insturument stand out.

    If I got a Jerzy like the one pictured, I'd make a point to coat the board in polyurethane. It would negate any major tonal differences, and also stop the board being worn away by rounds.
     
  15. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    I'm thinking if I inlay my fretless, I am going to coat it with Polyurethane, so there shouldn't be much of a difference. But doesn't that also change the tone? I have no experience with poly coated fretless basses, so I have no idea what changes in tone to expect aside from what I've heard others say.

    The inlay I want to use (if I decide it's a good idea at all) is pretty large and will cover a good bit of the fingerboard. I wanted to get the Sun in the middle surrounded by the planets inlayed in various materials... maybe I should save that idea for a fretted bass.
     
  16. Taylor Livingston

    Taylor Livingston Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 25, 2002
    Louisiana, US
    Owner, Iron Ether Electronics
    IMO, fancy inlays tend to look bad with all the frets in the way. But that's just my opinion. I say go for coated fretless.
     
  17. If you smear it on it will make a difference. I think the idea to polyurethane is that you apply it thinly enough that is makes no difference to the surface or tone, and then reapply as needed. I'm no fretless guru however.
     
  18. temp5897

    temp5897 Guest

    Not necessarily. I think my full neck inlay on my Imperial looked *much* better after the frets were on...gives it a much better sense of space and openness.
     
  19. John Ruiz

    John Ruiz

    Oct 9, 2000
    Plano, Tx
    Thanks for all the input guys! I guess I have some thinking to do... But I think I may go for it on the fretless, as it is not going to be my main bass, so if there is a tonal difference, well...I guess I can deal with it.