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Seperation on laminate bass--IMPENDING DOOM??!!

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by standup17, Sep 23, 2003.


  1. Hello, I am new to "talkbass", and thanks for indulging me.

    I have an Engelhardt C-1, a 1997 I believe. I have been in northern Arizona for 2 years and am noticing seperation where the top of the back meets the base of the neck (on the treble side of the bass). And also some seperation where the fretboard meets the neck at the bottom (nearest the bridge).

    I attached a photo, but did not have zoom on my camera. Sorry.

    So, it seems this may need attention soon. I do not (and have never) "humidified" the bass, and the RH around here is below 20% for much of the year. And I do put the bass through it's paces--outside playing, travelling, etc.

    Any information would be appreciated, and recommendations of good luthiers in Arizona.

    Thanks
    Z
     
  2. arnoldschnitzer

    arnoldschnitzer AES Fine Instruments

    Feb 16, 2002
    Brewster, NY, USA
    You just need to get the bass to someone who can glue up the openings for you. Preferably it's someone who has experience with the (lousy) Kay/Engelhardt neck joint. BTW, there's no fretboard on a string bass. There is, however a fingerboard. I would not bother humidifying a bass like that--it should be able to handle the dryness with no problem. Just keep it out of the sun!
     
  3. Thanks for the info. Does the repair that you mentioned involve removing the back of the bass, or otherwise taking it apart?

    Z

    ps: Yes, "fingerboard", not "fretboard". Can you tell I have a new hobby (it's a mandolin!)? I'm interested to carry something around that is actually portable.
     
  4. Gufenov

    Gufenov

    Jun 8, 2003
    Here's a great site for learning how a bass is put together. One of the photos shows how the neck attaches to the instrument.

    http://www.tanglefootmusic.com/info/bass/making_bass.htm

    I'm sure there are variations, especially in hybrid or laminated basses, but I'm also sure there are many similarities.

    Barefoot Larry posted this on the "Rockabilly" forum, and Bob Gollihur has added a link to his site.
     
  5. While there are a couple of interesting photos on that website, from a luthier's standpoint, the site ranks way down the list from Arnold Schnitzer's Building a New Bass Slide Show
     
  6. Gufenov

    Gufenov

    Jun 8, 2003
    ...but the tanglefoot site has a close-up shot showing how the neck fits onto the body of the bass, which might give GRANDPUP17 a better idea of what the joint actually looks like.

    Arnold's slide show is awesome, and I have a better understanding of how all those pieces fit together. I have one question, though. How come the taglefoot site shows the neck being carved with a pocketknife, and Arnold uses a machine?

    (ducks under desk...)
     
  7. What gives you the idea that my friend Arnold uses a "machine" to carve the neck? I see nothing in the photos that even hints of anything other than gouges and finger planes.
     
  8. Gufenov

    Gufenov

    Jun 8, 2003
    My mistake. I now realize the shiny green "machine" I saw is, in reality, a vise to hold the neck while Arnold uses the assorted tools shown in the bottom of the photo. Still, it's not quite holding the neck between your knees and using a pocketknife. ;)
     
  9. arnoldschnitzer

    arnoldschnitzer AES Fine Instruments

    Feb 16, 2002
    Brewster, NY, USA
    I'm so utterly insulted... Not shown in my slide show is the rough-carving of the neck. Actually, I have a custom-made dental appliance with titanium teeth sharpened to a razor's edge. I gnaw on the neck for about an hour until it is nearly complete. Then I switch to traditional hand tools. FYI, Jeff Bollbach taught me this method.
     
  10. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    That's funny - Nnick Lloyd Ttold me that Jjeff uses an entirely different type of prosthesis to carve his necks these days (I won't go into details on a public forum, but it sounded painful). Are you saying Nnick's a Lliar?
     
  11. Gufenov

    Gufenov

    Jun 8, 2003
    I thought I had read that Jeff begins with a RailRoad cross-tie and a pedicure kit, but I could be thinking of someone else.