String Spacing 1/8th Size Bass

Discussion in 'Setup & Repair [DB]' started by DuctTapeLuthier, Sep 18, 2006.

  1. DuctTapeLuthier


    Jan 20, 2006
    Anyone happen to know the correct (a reasonable?) string spacing at the bridge for an 1/8th size bass?

    I've seen it somewhere, and my recollection is that it's slightly wider than a full size cello (make sense since an 1/8th size bass is about 6 inches taller than a cello) but if anyone has more official numbers I'd appreciate the comments.


  2. Jake deVilliers

    Jake deVilliers Commercial User

    May 24, 2006
    Crescent Beach, BC
    Owner of The Bass Spa, String Repairman at Long & McQuade Vancouver
    Well if you really mean 1/4 size bass I can give you the numbers from Strobel.

    For reference he has a 4/4 cello body at 755mm and the mensure at 695mm with a 1-4 string spacing of 47. He has the 1/4 bass body at 940mm, the mensure at 900mm and the 1-4 spacing at 68.

    Hope this helps.
  3. DuctTapeLuthier


    Jan 20, 2006
    Thanks for the responses,

    Ken, do you make allowances for fractional sizes? The fingerboard is 75mm, so if I take off 15+20 the strings will be in the middle 40 mm - seems a little tight.

    If I use the scale length and scale linearly from the cello and 1/4 bass, I end up with a spacing of about 58 mm, which leaves about 12 mm on the G and about 15 on the E.

    I'm also thinking that this isn't likely to be played (much) above 3rd position. A top-D seems to cover about the first two years of playing, by which time (hopefully) he'll be into a 1/4 size (the 1/8th size is not the the highest quality bass I've ever seen - but it is the right size currently).

    Or he'll just keep playing the violin.

    Kid size basses should ALWAYS come with stools. The major reason the kids I speak to don't want to play the bass is because you have to stand up. I need to buy as stool, but cost effective fractional-size stools are not easy to find.
  4. I am 5'9" tall and play a 1/4 size sitting on a 17.5" tall stool I bought at Target for around $15. That stool may actually work for a child since it is quite low for an adult. I prefer to sit that way due to my previous back surgeries. They had some smaller furniture for kids on the next aisle. You could also try stores like Toys R' Us.

    Best of luck,

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