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Should I get a new fingerboard

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by subdivisions, Apr 18, 2010.

  1. subdivisions


    Apr 18, 2010
    Long time lurker..
    I'm going to have some work done on my bass. The finger board needs to be plained and reshaped and the bridge needs work as well. I talked to a local luthier and he went over a lot of the technical stuff. My big question is with all the work that needs to be done should I go for an ebony fingerboard. I'm playing a Kay C1 from 1940 with a rosewood board. I love the sound but whenever I play a bass with an ebony board it feels so much better. I'm play mostly jazz (fwiw). I'm looking at $700 parts and labor right now. Should I add on the cost of a new board or keep the rosewood board.

  2. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    Welcome to TBDB!

    I've got an early 60's Kay. Its fingerboard has been re-dressed once. At the time my luthier advised me against a new board, largely based on an "aint broke don't fix it" perspective. I think it came out smoother than when the Kay was made, and has gotten me through the subsequent decade to the point where I was ready to begin looking for a carved bass.

    There's also a recent thread here showing a newly re-dressed Kay board, and it's really pretty.

    When you play basses with ebony boards, are the necks also thicker? That could influence the feel. You could get some more thickness from an ebony board, just by using a thicker board. The luthier could also install a carbon fiber bar that makes the Kay neck stiffer.

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