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The DEFINITIVE Palatino EUB Modification Thread

Discussion in 'Electric Upright Basses (EUB's) [DB]' started by jamiefoxer, Jan 20, 2007.

  1. Unless he has a narrower model out now, it will probably be too large to work with the stock pickup. The Pal takes an undersized bridge. If you were going to go to a wing pickup it "might" work, but I'd double check the bridge height.
    GKon likes this.
  2. Garret Graves

    Garret Graves website- ggravesmusic.com Gold Supporting Member

    May 20, 2010
    Arcadia, Ca
    Ditto, love them on the Palatino. So far, no mods, other than rubber under pickup, rubber under bridge feet
    GKon likes this.
  3. ken downe

    ken downe

    Aug 21, 2014
    Anyone have any luck getting a more upright sound with the stock pickup with reverb ,delay , preamps or a magic wand?
    GKon likes this.
  4. Changing the stock preamp is a huge step in improving playability. A better - non voiced - amp also helps get away from the electric bass sound.
    GKon likes this.
  5. Padded CASE (Gigbag)
    A Lamar Snowboard Case is the perfect size. Play it Again sports can order them.

    SKU 470006
    carl h. and GKon like this.
  6. Do you have any pictures of it in the case - showing how it fits inside?
    GKon likes this.
  7. I can take some.. it's almost exact...

    I'll have a bunch of pix as there's going to be an extensive build up thread
    carl h. and GKon like this.
  8. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY
    Looking forward to it!
    carl h. likes this.
  9. Okey dokey... here we go.

    I have owned the NS and currently gig a modified Ergo. My preference is the Ergo as was the most receptive to modifications.

    The act I play with (most of the time) is roots hillbilly country. I've my duo partner really likes rockabilly percussive playing.

    I had the chance to play Carl's and it seemed like a better fit for the new gig. (He's been super helpful and a great guy)

    Most of the parts were used.


    • GlockenKlang 2 Band Preamp
    • Fishman Full Circle Bridge Pickup
    • Eminence Bridge
    • K&K Neck Slap Piezo
    • Strings = E & A Evah slaps.... D&G Roto Nylon 4000
    • Switchcraft locking TRS
    • Mute Switch (to kill it for when I'm on wireless and some nutty girl decides to show her krazee bass skills)
    • Gotoh 18v battery box

    Other Alterations

    • Old sock in under the tail piece... yarn around woven through the end piece.
    • Drilled End Pin for Hitch Pins
    • Drum Stand (I swap between this and a 7 string)
    • Snowboard Bag
    • Shirt Paint for Location Markers (sometimes it gets played vertical on the stand)

    UPcoming Mods
    • Just ordered a B string... (BEAD tuning)... actually Bb Eb Ab Db - my partner tunes down.
    • Bart 18b onboard Gain
    • Glow in the Dark Position Marker Inlay

    Thanks a ton for this thread... I learned a ton and it greatly helped.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Oct 21, 2016
    carl h. and GKon like this.
  10. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY

    I don't know Carl personally, but he definitely is constantly very helpful and forthcoming with modifications, information and advice!

    Good looking Palatino you've got there. I like the pinstripes and the flowers. :)
    MNAirHead likes this.
  11. It really lends itself easily to modification and is quite a useful "little" bass to take places no manufacturer is going with features.

    Could you share a pic of the endpin/stand assembly and how it is accommodated by the bag? If the stock setup will fit I'll probably be seeing about getting a bag ordered.
  12. I push the end pin up and leave it on the bass. when in transport.

    The bag is plastic lined with a 1/4" closed (guessing) padding... kind of like what a camping sleeping bag pad is like.... the dense padding has a plastic covering

    I put the floor end of the bass in first to ensure the zipper doesn't blow out and drop the bass on the ground.

    Stand I'll take some pix tonight... In essense I just slide the end pin (on the bass) into the drum stand... it's a quick swap between the upright and electric.

    Longer term, I may look into something that will keep it ready and upright...
    carl h. and GKon like this.
  13. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY
    I just got a set of Weed Wacker strings for mine. I have to find time to install them. It's going to require
    opening up the nut and bridge to accept the thicker gauge strings.
    carl h. likes this.
  14. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY
    Also, I've been practicing with my EUB an hour a day for the last two months. I've noticed that the G string is off compared to the other strings. What I mean is, if I play a B on the E string, E on the A string, and A on the D string, if I finger the same position on the G string Imdo not get a D. It is a few cents flat. I have to finger it about 1cm closer to the bridge to get a D.

    From the research I've done, it appears this is likely caused by an issue with the nut. I will try to rectify this as I recut the nut for the weedwackers.
  15. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY
    I couldn't wait so I started the process of installing my new weed wacker strings.
    I opened up the nut slot and bridge slot for the G string by wrapping sandpaper around a drill bit slightly smaller than the final size, as the thickness of the sandpaper would make up the difference.

    It seems to have worked out well, although I didn't have much time to test it out and these strings stretch a LOT!

    I plan on doing the work to install the E, A and D tomorrow.
  16. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY
    Tonight, I finished modifying the nut and
    bridge slots allowing me to install the thicker gauge Weed Wacker strings.
    All I can say is, WOW! They sound very good, thumpy, clear, warm, and the EUB sounds much more like an AUB.

    I notice, though, that the E and A have low tension and the D is a bit tighter (I expected all of this), but the G is quite tight.
    It doesn't at all feel like a low tension string. I wonder if this is normal. Anyone know?

    I definitely was nervous to do the work opening up the nut and bridge slots but I took my time and it seems, to me at least, that
    it all went quite well!

    My next thing to tackle is the bridge. The asymmetrical shape of the top of the bridge does not allow me to get the string heights I want,
    7mm at the G and 10mm at the E.

    When the adjusters are at their lowest setting (no adjustment), the G is at about 4mm and the E at 10mm.
    I raised only the treble side of the bridge, two full turns on the adjuster. I didn't want to raise it any more without also
    then raising the bass side. This put the G at 5mm and the E at 11mm.

    I wonder if I can reshape the top of the bridge to have a symmetrical curve, as opposed to the curve it has now which places
    the G much lower than the E. You can see it in the picture below. The Palatino bridge is the one on the right. The right side
    is the treble side, the left is bass You can see how much lower the treble side is. Why do they make it this way?
    (Next to it is an Eminence bridge that some people replace the Palatino bridge with).


    Any input regarding my idea? Is it advisable or a bad idea?
  17. It is possible to change the string height by reshaping the bridge. But you will loose some curvature and bowing would be more difficult due to the smaller angles before you touch the neighbor string. So better think about that before making any modifications to the bridge.

    To take the lower strings lower (and raise the whole action by the adjusters) take the bridge off, mark the D groove 1 mm lower, the A 2 mm and the E 3 mm. Make the grooves lower by that and wide enough so that the string is not stuck there, but all grooves had to go in parallel to the sides of the bridge and to each other, NOT perpendicular to the tangent of the bridge crown at that position.
    Don't forget to round the grooves towards fingerboard and tailpiece to avoid sharp edges that might be catches by the string. Afterwards file the bridge crown down so that the string groove is only a third (maybe a bit more for the E) of the diameter of the string deep.

    Before you change the bridge just try raising the string height in parallel until you get 7 mm on the G. Maybe you can live with that, if not you might want to lower half of the above 1 to 3 mm first and try that without reshaping the crown first and if it's not enough do the rest.

    And if you have a bow and can bow at least a little bit, try the bowing angles.
    The most dangerous thing is making the inner strings too low which can only be compensated by making the outer strings lower and the adjusters higher.
    GKon likes this.
  18. Ortsom

    Ortsom Banned

    Mar 23, 2016
    The shape of the bridge should follow the shape of the fingerboard, but the lower strings normally need more clearance (towards the board), as the amplitude in those strings is bigger. So in the bridge crest you get a slightly larger radius of curvature than in the fingerboard, and tilted upwards on the E-side compared to the fingerboard (not necessarily compared to the top).

    String heights G --> E = 7 --> 10mm seems a fair profile, but possibly a bit low for low tension whackers. Make something like that, and if required you can adjust to 8>11 or 9>12 with your adjusters, as you like.

    The 6mm difference (E-G) you say it now has seems too much, and it is likely that which causes the G-string to be off.
    GKon likes this.
  19. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Queens, NY

    Thank you for the detailed answer. After typing my thoughts on reshaping the entire bridge last night, I thought about it some more and revised that idea to what you suggest above, lowering the grooves a bit, and then file down the bridge crown to the proper height.

    When I do get the G to 7mm, the E is up to 13mm, quite high on the E for my tastes. Then again, I'm a beginner at UB, so still have to figure out things like good string height.

    I do have a bow and use it from time to time, but at the moment am focusing only on pizz (and pizza!). I know that Arco will improve my intonation, from all that I've read, but am saving it for later. I don't, however, want to alter the bridge so much now that I won't be able to bow later on.

    Thank you so much for all the details. I did know about the bridge having to follow the shape of the fingerboard, but didn't take into account the higher amplitude of the lower strings needing more clearance. Thank you!

    As mentioned in my earlier post, when the bridge is set to no adjustment, the G is at 4mm and the E is at 10mm, a 6mm difference between them. I can't seem to get much smaller of a difference between them without seriously skewing the adjustments to the feet, meaning having a large adjustment on the treble side and little to know adjustment to the bass side.
    I've read that that is not preferable. That is why I only adjusted the treble side two full turns and left the bass side alone.

    It would make sense to me to lower the groove of the E string 2-3mm (and subsequently the A and D, as mentioned above by DoubleMidi) to allow me to achieve
    a 3mm string height difference of 7mm G to 10mm E, or 8-11, 9-12 etc. It would seem to me that starting off with a 6mm difference in height will make that
    next to impossible.

    Is my thinking wrong?
  20. Ortsom

    Ortsom Banned

    Mar 23, 2016
    No, that's fine. One other thing though: make sure your strings are properly centred on the FB! If the whole bridge is off towards the E-side, then too you get a high E-string, and a low G-string. Cherry-pick from this.

    If you still have intonation issues (which you shouldn't have with proper strings), on a solid-body like this you can consider to put the bridge slightly at an angle to mitigate those, similar to how they do on fretted EBG's & guitars. But EUBs normally don't need that, and of course the feet should fit properly on the top.
    GKon likes this.