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RB5 MODIFIED? is this a no no??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fire-Starter, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
  2. David Wilson

    David Wilson Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporting Member

    Oct 14, 2002
    Lower Westchester, NY
    Well, it's not that you _shouldn't_ modify an RB5. More, why would you?

    It's the most flexible passive bass I've played, the best Fender I've every played. I'm an active bass guy, but bought the RB5 to have a good passive bass in my arsenal. I can honestly say I've never been tempted to modify it, it sounds that good.

    The person modifying it obviously went to a lot of expense doing so, but I'm not sure I understand why as:

    1) It now has single coil pickups only
    2) Because of 1), the series/parallel/coil tap switches have been removed, removing a lot of flexibility
    3) If you're going to put in a preamp, why would you choose a Fender one?

    I'm not sure I understand why any of these things were done.
  3. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Why? Just look at the seller's name: "basgenius"!
  4. mgmadian


    Feb 4, 2002
    Austin, TX
    I very much like my RB5 (great bass!), though I may have a couple of modifications done, in keeping with my track record of "never leaving good enough alone" :D

    I presently use an outboard preamp made by John Suhr (similar to the Sadowsky and Aguilar outboards) occasionally with the RB5, and will likely have an onboard preamp installed, with the option to bypass the preamp. And I'll probably have the volume pot modified such that when you "pull" the knob, both the volume and passive tone pots are bypassed (sending the pickup signal straight to the output jack, and possibly through the onboard pre if not bypassed). Lastly, I may replace the 3-way PUP selector switch with a 4-way switch that would also allow me to combine the output of the 2 pups in series.

    The key is that neither of these mods subtracts any existing functionality, they merely add to what's already there, and (in my opinion) in a musically useful way.

    I've had these mods performed to my early 70's Jazz, and it is frikkin' outstanding... I love the control layout and the tonal flexibility. Also to my Stingray 5, and the outcome is also fantastic.

    So... in all, I'm an advocate of having mods done if they (i) add to your palette of tonal options, or (ii) are easily reversible if they don't turn out as expected.
  5. slam

    slam Guest

    Mar 22, 2000
    Id like to modify my RB5 to make it lighter. I cant find a luthier that will do it though.
  6. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    If your're planning to keep a bass forever, then mod away.

    But if you wanna leave a hole on the bass the size of a pickup & ask $1000 for it, I think it's a bad idea. :confused:

    The bass probably sounds awesome. I personally like the pickups & preamp this guy put in the bass but he should be offering all the original parts with the bass as well.
  7. Fire-Starter

    Fire-Starter Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2002
    The seller started the bid at 750$ looks like no one person bid, and the auction closed:rolleyes:
    the seller also stated the following....

    "Over 1700. was invested in this bass and is being offered at less than half the price plus the cost of shipping"

    Now they are was asking 1000$, I am not sure he/she will sell it for that,no one even touched it at 750$ :meh:

    I must admit, I am curious to what it sounds like, I wish him/her well.