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string through body

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by bassist4christ, Jun 30, 2005.

  1. bassist4christ

    bassist4christ Banned

    May 26, 2005
    How can I get my bass changed to have the strings through the body? Can i do it myself or should I take it a shop? Thank you all for your time.
  2. nateo

    nateo Schubie Fan #1

    Mar 2, 2003
    Ottawa, Ontario
    If you don't have or are not comfortable with the use of a drill press, take it to a shop. It can be done by hand, but you run the risk of very crooked holes.

    If you decide to go ahead, mark the holes from the top and drill down using a brad point bit (more accurate). Also, clamp the bass to a block of wood so that when you drill through the bass you drill into the wood, minimizing chipping as the bit comes out of the bass.

    Beyond that you'll need some string ferrules for the back side and a bridge that works with a string through setup. I think most instrument supply places should have both of those.

  3. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    Before you go on, I'd ask, are you sure you want to do this?
    A search will show you that string-through has been deated many times; most say that it either has no or just minimal effects on tone; is it worth the extra trouble?
  4. Bassic83


    Jul 26, 2004
    Texas, USSA
    Might be cheaper to just change bridges. Keep in mind that once you remove wood from the instrument, the resonance will change, as might the resale value. I would hesitate to do this, as I have never known it to really have a drastic effect on tone. Bridge changes I have done have improved the tone and feel, but not like changing pickups or adding a tone circuit of some type. Just my $.37 worth. (Saying changed to account for rising cost of gas... ;) )
  5. Marcus Willett

    Marcus Willett Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2005
    Palm Bay, FL
    Endorsing Artist: Bag End - Dean Markley - Thunderfunk
    As someone who has had this done to 3 different basses over the years, I would say don't bother...really. The difference it makes (it does) is very slight, and will absolutely be lost in a mix. Many other things you can do to alter the tone that are cheaper and reversible if you change your mind.
  6. bassist4christ

    bassist4christ Banned

    May 26, 2005
    Does it improve the sustain?
  7. Nope.
  8. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    If the bass is a short scale, than string through body makes some long scale strings work better. It increases the string length (not the scale) just enough to get the silk up over the nut. For example chromes on a musicmaster.

    As for sustain, I didn't notice a difference. The sharp break coming out of the bridge did worry me a bit, but I never had a string break.
  9. is that auto gas or bass GAS? :D

    ill go with both
  10. paintandsk8

    paintandsk8 Pushin' my soul through the wire...

    May 12, 2003
    West Lafayette, IN

    Great point. A lot of tapered strings are made with string through bridges in mind. I know that DR longneckers as well as Tapered Ken Smith strings don't work well with my top loading schaller bridge. It leaves too much of the tapered section in front of the bridge, which causes problems.

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