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Purpleheart for neck material...

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by KAOSBass, Apr 10, 2006.


  1. KAOSBass

    KAOSBass

    Mar 10, 2005
    Amarillo Texas
    I've got some Ash laying around and was thinking about building a new bass, What do you guys think about using Purpleheart as neck material, not strips, but the whole neck, I was reading about it on the warmoth site, and they say it can be used as neck wood, but I've never seen anyone build the whole neck out of it.

    Experiences?
    Pics?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses
    It's definitely hard enough for a neck and should look really good too but Purpleheart is NOT easy to work with. It's pretty tough to shape. i.e. it's tough on the tools and on the operator if you do a lot of manual work yourself.

    Have you ever shaped rosewood or ebony by hand? It's as hard to shape
     
  3. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    I've made necks out of purpleheart. . . be ready for very sure bottom and bright top end. It's stiff.

    But, I'm a purpleheart fanatic. I just made my recording studio floor out of it :bag:

    finishedfloor.
     
  4. KAOSBass

    KAOSBass

    Mar 10, 2005
    Amarillo Texas
    Got any pics of the basses? What fretboard materials did you use?
     
  5. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    not a great picture but this one's my bass . . . solid purpleheart neck through. . . 2 truss rods are still flopping loose after 7 years they never needed to be tensioned. The neck is stiff enough to hold back those 6 strings. Tone is punchy to the extent of "too much". You can, however do well with subtractive EQ'ing on this bass which sometimes makes it work well in the studio. All frequencies are present and full which let's you shape.

    A meaty tube pre is a must on this bass.

    6string.
     
  6. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    I'll post a more descriptive color photo tomorrow.. . along with the other bolt-on purple heart necks I have in progress. Fretboards are ebony
     
  7. KAOSBass

    KAOSBass

    Mar 10, 2005
    Amarillo Texas
    Thanks for the pics....

    Would you recommend Maple fretboard with purpleheart? I have a Georgeous Stabalized Quilt/Burl/Spalted Maple fretboard, I'm dying to put to use.
     
  8. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    I really don't know 'cause I haven't done any maple fretboards. I'm just a beginner in this bass building, and am not all that good at sound speculation yet. These are my personal experiments. You'd laugh if you saw me carving this thing in my room with an X-acto knife and aluminum baseball bat.

    I would guess it would be fine. Kindof reverse of normal necks that have softer neck material with more rigid fretboard. This is just crazy guessing, but I think it might mellow out the purple heart's attack a bit on the treble side. . . decrease your sustain a bit.

    Again, don't listen to me. . . someone else with real experience should chime in. I'm amateur and don't know enough to speak with any authority. I'm just a sucka who tries to make too many things from purple heart. if you want a more traditional tone though, purple heart works great as a fretboard material.
     
  9. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca
    You could do it.

    It's true about the shaping: get yourself a new router bit, a bandsaw, a REALLY good rasp, a cabinet scraper, and a good burnisher (for the cabinet scraper), and you'll be fine.
     
  10. JSPguitars

    JSPguitars

    Jan 12, 2004
    Grass Valley
    NIce lookin' studio man!
     
  11. Basschair

    Basschair .............. Supporting Member

    Feb 5, 2004
    Stockton, Ca

    That's pretty friggin' nice: did you do all the work yourself?
     
  12. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    Yeah I did all the work except foundation and plumbing. . . the floor was very hard to sand. It's like it was mocking me and my "insignificant" sand paper :) I've gone over the purple heart deep end. Don't mind me.


    IMG_1746.
    IMG_1771.
    finishedfloorroom.
     
    CosmoReverb and lbridenstine like this.
  13. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    Necks in progress . . . row row row your boat. . .

    IMG_1846.
     
  14. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    Pics of my bass. . .

    IMG_1848.
    IMG_1850.
    IMG_1855.
    Here's a pic of how the neck goes all the way through.

    IMG_1852.
    IMG_1853.
     
  15. KAOSBass

    KAOSBass

    Mar 10, 2005
    Amarillo Texas
    Sweet!!!

    Alright I'm gonna give it a shot..

    No pain....No gain.

    Let the shaping begin.


    :hyper:
    :D
     
  16. Purpleheart is a beautiful (and cheep wood). Do it. I played a bass once that had a purpleheart body and it was bright as hell.

    lowsound
     
  17. callmeMrThumbs

    callmeMrThumbs Guest

    Oct 6, 2005
    Omaha, NE
    Um...Chunger, you're going to do my floors in my first house, k? Those are BEAUTIFUL!!! And the bass is stunning! I'm quite the purpleheart fanatic, myself. It all started with Victor Wooten's Compito fretless....

    -Josh

    PS. Good luck with the project, KAOS.
     
  18. your feet look like your bass. did you model it after them?
     
  19. chunger

    chunger

    Jan 10, 2006
    Albany, CA
    Chunger basses by Studio 939
    I call this one the "crazy feet". . . :smug:
     
  20. Lo end PUNCH

    Lo end PUNCH

    Jan 28, 2005
    Racine,Wi
    :eek: chunger-that bass is VERY nice, nice inlay on the stairwell landing too!
     

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