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The Rickenbacker Club Part Twelve

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by smperry, Apr 15, 2014.

  1. oldskoolskatedad


    May 18, 2014
    What is this lower profile metal bridge pickup surround you speak of? I went with a cove style treble bezel cover that is a big playability improvement for me but aesthetically it's still a bit clunky. I was intrigued by the Pickguardian pickup plate but wanted to keep it chrome vs plastic, especially because I lost some chrome with the Nordenbocker.

    Also, for me the Hipshot is an improvement in every aspect.

    woodyng2, redstrand and JMacBass65 like this.
  2. With those chrome Treble Bezels, are they metal, or just the black hard rubber with chrome plating? Does the plating flake off after a while? They look pretty cool and flashy but I always wonder how durable that chrome plated stuff is. When I was a little kid in the 70s I remember plastic toy cars had chrome plated bumpers that would always wear off down to bare plastic. (I probably wound up ingesting some of that crap, too, which explains my nervous twitching and urge to lick stop signs at 2 AM.)
  3. PaulBoyer

    PaulBoyer Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 27, 2012
    I know a lot of "us" either love or loath the classic 4000-series "bridge," but for its day it was innovative. Consider that the all-in-one casting is a 1) string anchor, 2) bridge mount, 3) adjustable mute mount, 4) counterbalance. Yeah, the mute is pretty much ineffective now-adays, and the bridge is hard to intonate. I was hoping for a better design that retained the same footprint and maybe had a flip lever for the mute, but it never came. Now the new fiver has a Schaller(?) with no mute, so that doesn't do it all, either. The Hipshot doesn't have a mute, but both of these later designs allow for palm muting. It's nice to have alternatives, but the original is fine for many.
  4. Picton


    Aug 16, 2017
    Reading, MA
    After I bought my 4001 but before it arrived, as I was feverishly researching everything about it, I read A LOT about the stock bridge. Everything I read had me ready to buy the Hipshot, but I wisely held off until it arrived. I put on some Roto 77s, took a deep breath, and spent a week putting the old stock bridge through its paces.

    I love it. It's comfortable, does its job, and intonates more than well enough for my ears. It led me to wonder what all the fuss was about. I get that it can be a PITA if you do frequent experimenting with string gauges, but that's not my style. I can understand that its coupling is not the best, but I can't see that it adversely affects tone; could it improve?

    Maybe. But I love the way it sounds too much for me to mess with it.
    Shlabotnik, Coolhandjjl and Spectrum like this.
  5. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    An Ebayer from Finland (IIRC) was selling these metal surrounds he fabricated for a while a few years back, but I haven’t seen them offered since a few months after I bought mine. It’s a shame because it is the best solution I’ve seen yet (obviously IMO).
    JMacBass65 likes this.
  6. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    My only fatal gripe with the stock bridge is the mute assembly, which ironically makes it impossible for me to manually mute the way I do for fast/tight pick lines. If you are a finger picker or don’t palm-mute behind the bridge pickup you are golden
  7. Basically the same design I came up with in 1992 using some plexi from my roommate (from his bong making supply) and a Dremel tool. Wish I had thought to patent & market it.

    Spectrum, ICM, woodyng2 and 3 others like this.
  8. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    Part of the beauty of the one from Finland is the built-in raised part that acts as the perfect thumbrest. After trying all of the available thumbrest treble-bezels for the stock pickup surround I never was able to find one that positioned my hand in a comfortable position (mostly because all of them were raised up so much from the body of the bass because of how they mount to the raised pickup surround). This one sits my thumb almost exactly where my thumb would sit over a J or P pickup, which is perfect for me!
    JMacBass65 likes this.
  9. toothguy

    toothguy Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2007
    Can anyone post pictures with:
    A) stock bridge in place
    B) Hipshot bridge in place
    C) Schaller bridge in place

    I guess what I’m asking is: does anyone have 3 basses with one of each of these options that they can post side by side by side?
    I’m trying to get an idea of the esthetics of how they look on a Rickenbacker bass.
    Visuals always help.
    Thank you.
  10. Interesting, I might be thinking of a different one then, as I don't remember a raised part. Cool. It's weird, I usually play my Rick pick style, although I am primarily a fingers player. Yet, over the past couple of years, when i do play finger style on my rick, I tend to not anchor my thumb as much, my right hand floats a bit more then when I play my jazz, where I use the neck pup as a rest. Although I have started to do the same on my jazz, depending on the song.
    sunbeast likes this.
  11. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    You may have been mistaking some of the conversations in previous pages comparing the Schaller and Hipshot bridges on a 4004 in context with Rickenbacker 4003? The only direct fits (that I am aware of now) for a 4003 are the stock Rickenbacker bridge, the Allparts Rick bridge (a copy of the Rick piece that some say is less sturdy than the modern Rick one), and the Hipshot Rick bridge. The Rick 4004 bass came stock with either a standard Schaller "roller bridge" (not sure the official name for these, but they are retrofits for a variety of basses including Fenders) or an ABM-brand bridge. I put a Hipshot Type A on mine (which I was discussing the benefits of in recent posts). The Hipshot Rick bridge utilizes the same saddle pieces as their Type A bridge, but the bridge plate is the same shape (for the most part) as the outline of the stock Rick bridge and unfortunately not as stable or feature-ful as the Type A. You can see that bridge on my Rick posted a few posts up
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
    woodyng2 likes this.
  12. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    Check the pic I posted a few posts up for the Finland surround. I have tried the floating technique too, but I think I like to dig in too hard to not have an anchor (and I especially like to dig in on a Ric!)
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2019
    JMacBass65 likes this.
  13. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2006
    IME, the stock bridge couples just fine.

    I have photos of Rick basses with all three bridges, along with the Hipshot A Style bridge, just not all on the same bass, and they are at various angles in the photographs.
  14. hypercarrots


    Jan 28, 2009
    los angeles
    schaller 3d bridge
    woodyng2 likes this.
  15. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    To make palm muting easier on my Fireglo, I replaced the mute thumb screws with chrome,round head philips screws from my local True Value hardware store.
    I also replaced the sharp black allen screws with shorter ones that sit flush. Everything is still functional, and you cant tell unless your really looking close. Total cost was under 3 bux.

    Rick mod II.
  16. redstrand


    May 18, 2007
    Saint Louis, MO
    Fool For Four Strings
    This is why I changed to the hipshot. When I first got the bass 6 years ago it was flush, same strings, 20 year old TI flats. The lift started and then got as bad as you see it. Wrong kind of pick holder. The hipshot I installed and intonated in five minutes. It’s fantastic EFD967E2-574D-4478-A1B4-94A870173C38. 7C2F1DA7-1322-45CA-BD6F-D447F13E3F7E.
    woodyng2 and JMacBass65 like this.
  17. sunbeast

    sunbeast Supporting Member

    Jul 19, 2006
    Los Angeles, CA
    I completely removed the mute plate and screws on my 4003 before going the Hipshot route- definitely more comfortable, but the slotted area the strings pass through from the mute still makes it impossible to mute in the place I naturally mute on every other bass! Still haven’t decided about converting my newly-acquired 4001 to a Hipshot, but I’m at probably an 80% on that (I’ve mostly been playing finger style on it, but will likely be selling the 4003 in favor of it if I decide to keep it- I’m loving the 4001, so pretty much the choice is really keep it or trade it for another older 4004!).
    woodyng2 and JMacBass65 like this.
  18. BassGen


    Mar 15, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    Plated plastic or nylon, much like the pup cover is.
    Spectrum likes this.
  19. mapleglo

    mapleglo Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 7, 2013
    phoenix, az
    Spectrum, rickdog, toothguy and 5 others like this.
  20. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    That, is customer service, at it's finest.
    woodyng2, JMacBass65 and mapleglo like this.

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