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Question on Zon

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Deep, Feb 28, 2004.


  1. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Does anyone know what the relief is on Zon five string bass necks? I've read where some of you feel the neck is almost dead straight, while some of you feel there is a little too much relief for your taste. So I guess I'm asking, does anyone know what relief Joe Zon "builds" into these necks?
     
  2. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    The relief is pretty minimal, perfect for a fretted IMHO. I have a fretless Zon, and I like my fretless neck nearly flat. I wish that my fretless had a little bit less relief.
     
  3. The relief on my Sonus 5 is very slight, about a postcard thickness. The neck is very rigid, though, and the fretwork precise. There is definitely buzz, which is consistent up and down the neck and from string to string. This helps make the tone pretty aggressive, especially with light strings.

    Aloha,

    Jonathan
     
  4. Part of the reason you may have heard different reports is that the relief has changed over the years. The early Zons had more relief built into the necks than those made in recent years, according to one person I talked to who had both an early Legacy Elite and more recent Sonus and Legacy basses.

    Mike
     
  5. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Thanks for the replies guys. Jonathan, you stated that the relief on your Sonus is about "postcard" thickness. Is that measured between the 1st to 12th fret or 1st to last fret? I know some of us measure relief either way.
     
  6. temp5897

    temp5897 Guest

    Do zon's not have truss rods?
     
  7. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    No Jason, they don't.
     
  8. boogiebass

    boogiebass

    Aug 16, 2000
    Exactly correct, IME. Both my '93 Legacy Elite and '95 Legacy Standard sixers have more relief than recent Zons I've checked out. The older ones play nicely as long as you like that amount of relief and don't go for extremely close action. The minimum action on those older Zons would actually be too high for some players.
     
  9. The postcard of relief on my Sonus 5 is from the 1st to the 24th fret. From the first to the 12th fret, there is virtually no relief.

    To get a "round" tone I need to play it pretty lightly. Playing it harder get's "grindy" very fast. This is fine for me as long as I'm playing with a loud drummer. For more acoustic stuff, I prefer other basses.

    I have an old beater red sonus 5 put away that I keep strung with Jazz Flats and I'm curious to see if it has more relief.

    This is a good discussion.

    Aloha,

    Jonathan
     
  10. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Cool Jonathan. That's probably around 1/64 or .015 (postcard thickness) I think? Correct? I don't have a beautiful Hawaiian postcard to use. ;-) That's pretty flat. Can't see how too many people would need it flatter than that.
    Thanks.
    BTW. What strings do you like to use on it?
     
  11. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    I have 2 Zon Sonus Custom 5's, and both basses have virtually a perfectly straight neck. As Jonathan mentioned, this means you really have to play with a fairly light touch to avoid to much fret noise. I would personally prefer a little bit more relief, but hey, at least it's consistent!
     
  12. Slowwounds with the taper core B work nicely.

    Also the Zon Mediums.

    I tried TI Jazz Rounds but they were too rattly.

    Aloha,

    Jonathan
     
  13. Deep

    Deep

    May 8, 2002
    NY
    Thanks for the responses. So Jonathan, Halftooth and Embellisher.....what do you have your string height set at? And do you use a capo at the first fret or not when you set it up? Thanks a bunch guys.
     
  14. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    My string height varies depending on the type of playing that I do at a certain period of time. I'm fortunate to live fairly close to Joe's site, so I'll just drop the bass off to him to have it adjusted to whatever style that I'll need at that time. I believe when I was playing with a light touch and with Zon Ultrasonics SS Lights, I had 4/64 at the 24th on the G. This made tapping parts and intricuit playing easy, but it also sounded pretty floopy at times as well. My other one was set-up with the Zon Ultrsonics Nickel Mediums and I believe it has about 4/64 at the 12th. This one I can dig into a bit more without it sounding too clacky. Since I've been experimenting with strings now for a bit, I think I'm settling in on the Zon Ultrasonics Med. Lights for both basses, and I'm probobly going to have them set-up pretty much the same next time. I'm going to have the basses set at 3/64 on the 12th and gradually tapor a bit higher on the low B and E. Hopefully this will allow me to play the tapping parts and let me dig in as well without sounding to clacky. I think the guages on the strings will alllow for that as well with it being really light on the D and G, and heavier on the B, E, and A.