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Roscoe fretless, which woods for body and fbg ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Shiveringbass, Sep 30, 2005.


  1. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Hello to all Roscoehead and others,

    I love so much my Roscoe LG3005 that I begin to think it is not very kind from me to let it alone. Maybe another one could break its lonlyness !
    ;)
    :)
    It could be also a great opportunity for me to start fretless which is something I'd like to try for years.

    My question is which woods should I choose for a great growly, woody and full of definition fretless tone on a Roscoe ?
    For a freted I'm more on the ashbody/ maple fingerboard side but for fretless, I've got no ideas ? I'm even more lost when it comes to chose a top !

    Thanks to share your experience and thoughts on the subject.

    Peace

    Shiveringbass
     
  2. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Alexandria,VA
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    If you're overly concerned about cosmetics, a bubinga top might fit the bill for a woody sound. Otherwise, I can't see going wrong with a myrtle or maple top.

    For the fingerboard, my preference is ebony. It feels nice, and imparts a nice brightness to the tone. For a little mellower tone, cocobolo would be nice too. Wenge would also impart some woodiness to the tone too.
     
  3. Gard

    Gard Commercial User

    Mar 31, 2000
    Greensboro, NC, USA
    General Manager, Roscoe Guitars
    Ahhhhhhhhh...a topic I can really warm up to...

    :D

    Fingerboard...depends on what you're looking for. If you want a really warm, woody, mellow tone, ebony. If you want to get that really singing "mwah" tone, diamondwood.(my preference is always for diamondwood).

    Body...again, depends on what you're looking for. Warm, fat, mellow tones, go with Spanish Cedar or mahogany (mahogany is a bit "fatter" to me). If you want nice punch and definiton, swamp ash.

    Top...well, again...what do you want? Huge ANGRY Jaco-y mids, bubinga everytime. Bright cutting top end, maple or myrtle (solid myrtle bodies are GREAT for a very cutting tone, IMO). Fuller, rounder tones...redwood, spalted or very burled maple, or any of the softer top woods.

    Oh the possibilities!!!!

    :hyper:

    :D
     
  4. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Aoutch ! I've just gone on Roscoe site, there are so much woods to chose !
    :meh:
    Just give me one of each !
    :bassist:
    ;)

    More seriously, from your post Gard, I could realy end up buying the same bass as mine but in fretless :
    swamp ash for punch
    birdeyes/diamondwood for cuting sound
    and... to change a Bubinga top for Jacoish killer mids !
    :hyper:
    What about purple heart fingerboard on fretless ?

    Thanks for your going on opinions.

    Peace
     
  5. JOME77

    JOME77

    Aug 18, 2002
    Georgia
    Simple..............
    Spanish cedar body (exotic top of your choice;I've not heard one that sounded bad yet)

    Diamondwood fingerboard

    They'll have to pry it out of your dead hands! :smug:
     
  6. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Ok, so second recommandation for diamondwood fingerboard.
    :)
    That's a good begining !
    ;)
    And Roscoehead members are coming, so come on let's make it a true Roscoe fretless thread !
    :)

    Some other opinions on fingerboard, on body woods and crazy top ?

    Thanks
     
  7. Bassmanbob

    Bassmanbob Supporting Member

    OK I'll play.

    My fretted and fretless are very similar. They are both Swamp Ash bodies, Demeter preamps, Maple/ Purple heart/ Maple necks and the tops are very similar (Quilted Maple on the fretless and Box Elder Burl on the fretted) Box Elder is the cousin of Maple.

    The ony real difference besides the fretted being a 6 and the fretless being a 5, is the finger boards. My fretted has the standard Spaulted Purple Heart and the fretless has the DIAMONDWOOD! Any fretless I can custom order will always have a diamondwood fingerboard. It just sings baby!

    I don't know exactly what it is. My fretted Roscoe is really great, but there is something magical about my fretless. It just sounds so sweet and plays like a dream. Even the guys in the band love when I take out that bass. I boost the bass about half way and I have all the warm sound but with the definition I desire. I play it 80% of the time now.

    If I ever get another Roscoe (If I ever get another bass), it will probably be a Mahogany body, Walnut top, Demeter preamp and a Diamondwood finger board fretless. It'll be heavy, but I have a good back.
     
  8. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Thx Bassmanbob for your thoughts and experience.

    Others ? Basso, Emjazz ?
    ;)

    Peace
     
  9. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Boston, MA
    You rang???? :D

    I'd LOVE to get my hands on a Roscoe fretless. To be honest I've not played one yet. I've heard sound clips that were rediculous though. Diamondwood seems to be perfect for fretless and is probably a big part of the great Roscoe fretless sound (as well as the pickups and pickups placement). If you want a more focused sound than swamp ash is the way to go. If you want a bigger, warmer sound than go with alder (my personal favorite for fretted and fretless). If you'd like that bigness with a little more growl than mahogany. If you want more focus than mahogany than go for spanish cedar. Oh, and you can't go wrong really, it's a fretless Roscoe! :bassist:

    My suggestion for you would be swamp ash, diamondwood and a bubinga top if you don't mind a little bit of extra weight. You know, now that I think of it I'd bet that they'd do a 3 piece body with swamp ash wings and a mahogany center block. That, in my book, would be dead on to what you're looking for! Straight up swampash would be right there though.
     
  10. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    Another Roscoe thread to give me that good ol' "I want another Roscoe" jones...Yeah!!! :hyper:

    I'd personally want an SKB3006 with a spanish cedar body with an exhibition grade quilted or flame (I can't decide) maple top in Emerald Green with a matching Diamondwood fingerboard.

    BassNorthwest has a picture of pretty much what I want in their Roscoe custom gallery page.

    I really like growly, midrangey tone of my fretted SKB3006; which has the Bartolini EQ, and I wouldn't want change a thing tone-wise.

    -Art
     
  11. Matt Morgan

    Matt Morgan Fellow Conspirator Supporting Member

    Oct 21, 2001
    Plano, TX
    My fretted SKB3006 is Spanish Cedar with a quilted Maple top, spalted PH board. It is very clear and consistant across the tone spectrum. Little or no peaks or valleys anywhere I play. Fantastic tone and very articulate.
    My fretless SKB3006 on the other hand is Mahogany body with a burled Redwood top and..of course..DIAMONDWOOD fingerboard. This bass has a bit fuller low and noticeably fuller low-mids. It really barks in these registers. I absolutely love it! Diamondwood is the only board I would recommend. It is pure magic. It is clear, a little "zinggy" but really lets the voice of the instrument speak. I've been gigging more regularly lately and I consistantly get comments from people that they loved the sound of the fretless. I play about 40% of our show fretless and I can't wait to get my hands on it!
     
  12. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    OK for Diamondwood. But will ther be significant differences between it and birdseye/diamondwood fingerboard ?

    I guess the more difficult to choose will be the top.
    I'd like to go for a very different one from my quilted maple top just for the pleasure to have two different but beautiful bass.
    Bubinga has a great look but not sure it could pair well with the birdseye/diamond wood board, I guess with it a black dimaondwood board will be better.

    Other experience or ideas ?

    Peace

    Shiveringbass
     
  13. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Gard's personal bass will be a swamp ash body, bubinga top and a birdseye maple diamondwood fretless fingerboard.
     
  14. Gard

    Gard Commercial User

    Mar 31, 2000
    Greensboro, NC, USA
    General Manager, Roscoe Guitars
    I think it will look great myself, however, I will be "reviewing" that information prior to committing myself 100% to that choice. Once the body is cut to shape, I'm going to compare the black and bird's eye maple diamondwood boards to each other against the bubinga. I'll be posting photos when that happens! ;) Hopefully within a couple of weeks, the body should be cut to shape....
     
  15. Wilbyman

    Wilbyman

    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    Having heard the diamondwood/spanish cedar combination...I can't imagine anything being better for fretless. It sings like a bird and growls like a buzzsaw! I'm stoked for mine!

    W
     
  16. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    Great Gard ! I will wait for your comparison, it will be a great help
    ;)
    :)

    Peace

    Shiveringbass
     
  17. Halftooth

    Halftooth Supporting Member

    Nov 24, 2002
    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    Couldn't have said it better myself!
     
  18. Shiveringbass

    Shiveringbass

    Aug 21, 2005
    France
    For spanish cedar, I'm not much into the "almost acoustic sound" which is often associated to it. However, I've never heard one so can only presume that it is not quite what I'm looking for.

    For my fretless, My priority goes to "growl" more precisly the growl which is usualy associated with Warwick bass with realy cutting low mids and low full of definition.

    Add to that some realy singing highs inspiring beautiful melodies and it should be my perfect fretless.
    ;)
    :)

    Sheers
     
  19. jusplayinmybass

    jusplayinmybass

    Apr 17, 2003
    Conyers, Ga
    Keith McMillan Instruments, SIT Strings, Accugroove Cabinets
    I haven't played too many Roscoe fretlesses. But I really like one at Atlanta Bass Gallery that has a Spanish Cedar body, Myrtle Burl top and black Diamondwood fretboard. It has the perfect balance of sing and warmth. It sings almost like Graphite and growels almost like wood. I really need that bass.
     
  20. elwood

    elwood there is no spoo

    Jul 25, 2001
    Mid-Hudson Valley, NY
    If I could swing getting one, I would go for this configuration, or maple burl in place of myrtle.