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Question about putting a J neck on a Pbass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mongeaux, Apr 17, 2004.

  1. Mongeaux


    Apr 14, 2004
    Here is my situation. After playing guitar for over 20 years I decided to get a bass. It turned out to be a great idea! I get lots more calls for work as a bass player.

    My first bass was a Fender MiM Jazz bass. The necks on everything else just seemed HUGE.

    But now that I have been playing for a few years and learned more about bass tone I have decided that the sound I really want would be that of a P bass. I play Blues and Jazz exclusively.

    Now there is no way I can see myself doing all of my Jazz work on that larger Pbass neck. Blues would be no problem as the lines are simple.

    The question is, if I get a Pbass with a Jazz neck on it will it still sound like a Pbass? I have tried one out in a local store but I honestly can't tell. Instuments always sound different in a store than on an actual gig, it makes it hard to judge what it will sound like. On top of that I play on flatwound strings. New basses all come with wound round so I am stuck not knowing what the bass will really sound like till I get it home.

    My last trip to the store I picked up an Ibanez and was amazed at how good it played. Now if I could just figure out how to get a good Pbass old school blues tone out of it I might switch to Ibanez.

    /sheesh why is nothing ever simple
  2. I'd say a Jazz neck on P body would still sound like a P-Bass. It's a common procedure that lots of people do. You can probably buy a Jazz neck direct from Fender, or buy off of Warmoth or other parts sites. You can even buy used necks on Ebay.
  3. Dr.SixString


    Apr 30, 2002
    A friend of mine has a nice '71 fender jazz bass, few months ago he replaced the original neck with a '78 rosewood precision neck. the
    bass sounds even better with the P neck but it sounds like a jazz bass, , I'm pretty sure you'll get a great precision tone with the P body/J neck combination.
    Now there is no way I can see myself doing all of my Jazz work on that larger Pbass neck

    you should try one of my wide 6ers:D
    come on, the p neck is just 0.157"/4 mm wider at the nut so I don't see it that large, anyways.
  4. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I think by far the most important contributer to the P bass versus J bass sound is the pickups and the pickup placement on the body. I have a P bass style Yamaha and it still gets a P tone even though the neck is quite different.
  5. JPJ


    Apr 21, 2001
    Chicago, IL
    People put jazz necks on P basses all the time for the exact reason you're talking about....playability. For many people, the 1 3/4" wide nut is just not as comfortable or practical as 1 1/2". Because the neck and fingerboard will still be made out of maple/maple or maple/rosewood (unless you're looking to do something different), the only change will be in feel and playability...not tone. It's a very popular mod and you should end up with one very playable P-bass as a result. ;)
  6. Yvon

    Yvon Supporting Member

    Nov 2, 2000
    Montreal, Canada
    I did it and I am very happy with the results. Great P bass sound with the playability of a jazz.
  7. Figjam


    Aug 5, 2003
    Boston, MA
    I would recommend getting a Made in Japan jazz bass special. P bass body, jazz bass neck, a p bass pickup and a bridge jazz bass pickup. Allows for any tone you want really. ^^ The red bass above has the same pickup configuration.
  8. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    If you decide to pull the neck off a MIM Precision, let me know. I want a jazz with a P-neck in the near future. ;)
  9. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    All three of my basses are Frankenbasses.

    1. My main working bass is a MIJ Jazz body with a 1975 fretless maple Precision neck. Custom shop pups.

    2. The fretless MIJ Jazz neck is on a MIM Precision body with EMG's.

    3. The third bass is the MIM Precision neck on the 1975 Precision body stock pickups.

    Bass number 2 gets rarely played. Bass number 1 and 3 go most gigs, with 3 there as a backup and 1 or 2 songs.
  10. Mongeaux


    Apr 14, 2004
    I went and found a presision bass special in a local store. It already has the Jazz neck on it. I liked it but I think I might order the "delux" version, black with that gold pickgard is cool imo. The one I played on was low the end version and the neck didnt feel good. I guess thats to be expected when a bass only costs 300 bux or so. I remember when I bought my low end Jazz I ended up going to the best tech in town and having the nut replaced and a fret job done the day after I bought it. It played great after that but this time around I would like to get a bass that plays good without having to have major work done to it first!
  11. eldave777


    May 24, 2005
    It's gonna sound like a P bass. That's what Duck Dunn does BTW.
  12. peabody

    peabody Supporting Member

    Oct 31, 2002
    La Crosse, WI
    Another option is to buy a P-Bass with an "A" neck, which is basically a jazz width neck, which is 1.5" at the nut. I may have one for sale if you're interested....it's a '77 P-bass with an "A" neck.
  13. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    One thing to look out for... make sure both necks have the same number of frets. Some Fender necks have more frets than others and if you get one different from yours, you will not be able to intonate it.
  14. mindflow


    Oct 31, 2004
    i have an 86 japanese P body with a 91 jazz neck on it for sale on ebay right now. (check username mindflow928axu)sounds just like a p, no noticable sound change and yes make sure the number of frets is the same if youre doing it yourself. also using MIJ versus MIA or MIM basses can make a difference. MIJ sometimes are thinner at the neck pocket.
  15. Showdown

    Showdown Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2002
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    I have two P basses with J necks, and they both sound great, and sounds the same as with a P neck. Do it, you won't be sorry.
  16. i prefer jazz basses with precision necks :bag:
  17. pickles

    pickles Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 23, 2000
    Ventura, CA
    If I were you I'd buy this dude's '77. Late '70s P basses sound so good in a mix!

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