The book I've been waiting for has finally arrived at my door. I received the 377 page book, The Setup and Repair of the Double Bass for Optimum Sound, in the mail this afternoon and I've spent the last few hours trying to get a feel of the book. I can see now that it will take many days or weeks to get through it. A better title for the book might have been the "Encyclopedia of Bass Repair". I have tried to think of all the items that I think are needed, and so far everything I can think of has been covered in the book sometimes multiple times. This book is not just a repair manual where Chuck Traeger says "this is the way I do it and that is the only way to do it". On the contrary, Traeger has on many occations to called on his bass luthier/editor friends David Brownell and Bill Merchant to describe their methods when they do a particular repair or adjustment in a different manner. As a result, there are (atleast) two different methods shown in detail on how to make a fingered "C" Extension from scratch or how to execute a neck/scroll graft. Traeger is not afraid to admit he was wrong in the past when a better method is discoved later. In the prologue there is one paragraph which sums up Traeger's approch to writing the book. I quote from the book. "This is a repair book written primarily for bass players. Yes, it is written to help the general repairer who gets a bass only occasionally on his work bench. It is written for the bass specialist to show him or her better ways of doing things. It is written for the young repairer just starting out as a guide on how to do proper bass repairs. But it is written for the player for three reasons. 1) Section II details how to make any bass sound louder, evener, and easier to play at very little cost. This section will be invaluable to any player and bass maker. 2) Other sections show how the proper repair can lead to the production of optimum sound. 3) It is written to demystify the repair process so that the player can get an idea of what goes into a certain repair and thus its cost." In the relatively brief time that I have spent reading the book, I have already found several tips that might helpful for even an experienced bass luthier. One simple tip that I found of interest had to do with matching varnish color. Traeger suggests mixing a small amount of colored varnish on a small piece of glass. Placing the glass over the area that needs patching allows you to see and adjust the color without actually applying the colored varnish to the instrument and avoiding a possible mismatch. I'm sure this may be nothing new to some of the bass luthiers here, but it was a new one for me. It is one of those "Why didn't I think of that" kind of things. I'm absolutely sure that I will find lots of other tips that I will be using in the future. I'm sure there will be some things that will be chalenged by the establishment, but IMO Chuck Trager has written the definite book on bass repair and more importantly on the setup of the doublebass for the best possible sound. There seems to be something in this book for everyone. Traeger was one of the founding members of the Catgut Acoustical Society and there are chapters explaining the modern methods used to enhance the sound of the db. There is even a chapter on bass bow repairing and rehairing. You name it, and it (seemingly) is there. The book is available primarily from the publisher Henry Strobel. The price including shipping is $94.00. New Yorkers will probably find the book available at Bill Merchants Shop. This has to be the greatest bargain I've ever seen in luthier books. By comparison, the Hans Weisshaar book goes for a lofty $300 (and well worth it). Anyone who repairs or wants to repair basses can not afford to be without this book. This book was well worth the wait. Until someone writes a better one, this is the best bass book out there. With that said, I would like to thank everyone I've meet through the Talkbass forum. For the most part, I have enjoyed being a participant on the forum. However, in the year since I had my knee replacement surgery, I've found that TB, for a number of reasons, is no longer fun for me and it is my intention that this will be my final post on TB. I'll probably drop by every now and then to check things out, but I plan to be a lurker rather than a participant from now on. (With this book out, I would probably just tell you to get the book rather than trying to explain it.) EDIT 8/9/2005 - Mr. Traeger asks that anyone who has questions about ANYTHING in the book to contact him by mail. (However, It would help to actually read the book prior asking the questions!) Mr. Traeger does not have an internet or email connection. His mailing address is: Charles Traeger PO Box 187 Yulan, NY 12792 FWIW - When I wrote Mr. Traeger about a statement in the book, I received a very articulate four page letter of explaination back in less than a week.