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Schmidt Bass- any opinions?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by bobr, Sep 11, 2000.


  1. bobr

    bobr

    Sep 10, 2000
    Hi,
    I am looking at a Schmidt(sp?)ply Bass and I was wondering if anyone has had any experiences with them. I don't have the model number right now, but the retail is about $3200. I noticed that it sounds sort of dark (the A string is especially dead) but am hoping that a setup, tail wire and strings will bring it around. It was fitted with Spirocores, and although the endpin fitting is Rosewood, the tail wire was some sort of plastic.
    The instrument seems really 'beefy' (thick neck and fingerboard) and the string length seems to be longer than the rest of the stuff I saw there. The bridge looked like it was in the right position, but nut to saddle seems almost an inch longer than the others.
    Do these qualities tend to darken the sound and dampen the dynamics? Does the extra string length have a big effect on playability and tone?
    The Luthier's only cautionary comment was that the 'zero barrier' edging made it alittle harder to re-align the top edges, should it ever need to be removed, or the seams repaired. He and the salesperson agreed that the tail wire and strings should go.
    I know we're talking ply construction, but I played a student model Pfretzner (fitted with factory Super Sensitives) that really seemed to 'light up' compared to the Schmidt.
    I really like the fit, finish and fittings, but should I pass on this Bass or is there hope?

    TIA

    bobr
     
  2. olivier

    olivier

    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France
    It's expensive for a ply, you don't like the sound, needs new strings + tail piece + wire, may require neck + fingerboard adjustment, has no edges (the side touches the floor when laying on the side), and has longer strings (do you have larger hands ?): no hope.
     
  3. bobr

    bobr

    Sep 10, 2000
    Hi Oliver,
    Just got your post on the other board (StringBass). Do you have a preference as to where to post, or is it a tradition for double bassists to double everything (how do you get those smiley things in here)?

    Some clarifications:
    -selling price is about $2.2k setup, with strings of my choice and bag included. I don't know about the tail wire. (sorry about the confusion)
    -the edging is actually thicker than usual because they glue some stock under the lip of the top and back, sort of a reverse fillet, to smooth the transition at the seam. So the sides don't touch the floor. I was just wondering if this extra wood was part of the dark sound....possibly a Schmidt trait?

    Thanks again for the input. They will let me try it (and any of the others they have) for a week or so, to see if I like it. As I said on the other board, I would like to support the local shops if possible. Something tells me not to write this one off too quickly, so I thought I would ask around.

    bobr
     
  4. olivier

    olivier

    Dec 17, 1999
    Paris, France
    I have no steady preference among the four forums dealing with double bass that I know off. It's funny to see how slight differences in the questions make big changes in the answers. Do not worry about them Smiley things: neither I do know how to use them as they are not part of my gestual/facial expression.
    Good luck with the Schmidt (Franz or Frederik ?). I hope some of their owners will give his/her opinion. In another thread it was explained how many $bills you had to have in your wallet and in your pocket to make a deal ... (you get the picture... wincking smiley here)
     
  5. bobr

    bobr

    Sep 10, 2000
    Olivier,
    Yeah I noticed that I was not very consistant in the posts.

    Anyway, the bass is an E.R. Schmidt model 60, and after trying it with a bow, I bought the instrument. The store gave me a good package, including a Meisel stand and Core Case Bag, as well as the standard student incidentals (cheezy bow, Pops rosin, Black Hole, a few books of my choice).

    The Model 60 has a varnished neck which the luthier will re-finish when I have the setup and tail wire done. As the instrument is quit playable, we agreed to wait until after the school/rental rush, which gives me some time to get to know the bass.

    Perhaps the best part is this: I am playing today, not shopping.

    BTW for anyone looking at bags, I really like the Core Case. It is heavy rubberized nylon skin over 1" foam padding, with a velveteen lining. 5 well-placed handles, 3 adjustable straps and 8 rigging rings (so you can 'backpack' or 'over the shoulder' it), 2 large pockets and a bow pocket with 2 padded bow cases inside. They also have some rectangular rubber bumper pads where the bouts touch when on its side. This bag has ample room for the model 60 (which is about 2" longer than the other 3/4's I looked at) and has flaps under the zippers to keep water out and the zippers off the bass.

    Thanks again for your link to 2Xbasslist, and to all that have posted here.

    bobr