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Signature basses?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by moro, Dec 10, 2006.


  1. moro

    moro Geek

    Sep 5, 2006
    Bay Area, CA
    Has anyone had any experience with "Signature" basses? There's a guy on eBay who sells bodies / necks from this brand:

    http://stores.ebay.com/BuildaBass

    He claims they were a high end manufacturer in the late 80s. I'm really tempted to get one of the white Jazz bodies and a neck with blocks and binding.

    A little steel wool and this thing could be sweet:

    d8_1.
     
  2. high mileage

    high mileage

    Apr 17, 2006
    Rockford IL
    I have one and really like it. I started out thinking I was going to build a true parts bass and bought a neck from him and then couldn't pass up a deal on the complete body. I bought the body and neck complete from him and had them professionally assembled (body to neck) and set up. The guy who did it is very good and was reasonably impressed with the parts (it takes a lot to really impress him ;) ).

    Here's the negatives: The tuners weren't very good and don't directly match up to anything else I found. I used Hipshot HB-2's and re-drilled but the G tuner hung over the edge on the back so I had to grind a little off of it (no big deal). Also, the Hipshot bushings are too small based on how my neck was drilled - this one may be different. I see this neck does not have tuners and that's how I'd buy it. Next, the pickups are both the same size so you can't use a standard pickguard for replacement and if you want to change the pickups you'll need two bridge sized (not that I'd want to change them - they sound great). The neck needed a little fret work - but only minor, and it had sat for almost 20 years so I didn't see that as a big deal. Finally, he may have had to move the Badass bridge forward about 1/4". This bridge is longer than the stock bridge so I don't think that would have worked at all. I don't have string-thru anymore but honestly don't care about it either.

    In spite of that, it's a great sounding bass at a good price. I don't think the resale value would be that good being an unknown bass, but have no plans on selling it. I put an Audere preamp in mine and it sounds great, so with those three mods (Badass, tuners, pre) I'm really happy with it. I like it a lot better than some of the brand new off-the-shelf basses I've played for the same money.
     
  3. moro

    moro Geek

    Sep 5, 2006
    Bay Area, CA
    Thanks, it's good to hear from someone who actually owns one.

    The compatibility of the parts is something that concerns me. I'm really interested in just the neck and body--everything else (bridge, tuners, pickups, pickguard, electronics), I'd want to get elsewhere. Sounds like it's a little tricky, but not impossible, to get things to fit?
     
  4. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Banned

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man
    Would this be the same company who made Alex Lifeson's guitars in the late 80's? I remember seeing a thread about basses that guy made...
     
  5. high mileage

    high mileage

    Apr 17, 2006
    Rockford IL
    My neck and body are a good tight fit - not sure if that's always true because this is the only one I have any experience with.

    Lots of bridge options, and the Badass is designed for direct replacement without drilling (but have the saddle slots cut by a tech, instructions included with bridge). The problem with mine was that the stock bridge would have been too short and I'd have to re-drill it anyway. The measurement from nut to saddle wasn't quite right, but I have no idea why that was the case. I don't know for sure if mine actually was moved (BA is longer so it might not have been necessary) but the tech said he might have to when we laid everything out.

    Like I said about the pickups and guard, they're different than standard Fender sizes. I think he swapped p/g's for me if the one you're looking at doesn't have the guard you want. I really like the sound of the bass as-is and have no plans to change anything else, but did add an Audere preamp. It fit with no modification to the body - but just barely. It took 3 or 4 tries to get everything positioned right so that it would fit correctly, but it did work. Next mod might be to add a separate battery compartment, but only for convenience. Can't comment on battery life - pretty new at this point. It sounds like it did, just "more" of it... Overall I am very happy with it and have thought of buying another one as a fretless - and I don't even play fretless!
     
  6. high mileage

    high mileage

    Apr 17, 2006
    Rockford IL
    I don't know for sure, but I don't think it's the same one. This company supposedly was in Cranston RI here in the US, and the Rush referenced Signature was in Canada. The guitars they made (and a few basses) were very 80's styled - but hey, it was the 80's! I don't remember seeing the Canadian Signature having anything Fender styled (google Signature guitar for a fan club site). Their logos were different too. Actually both companies (if it in fact was two companies) were around about the same time...
     

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