Dismiss Notice

Psst... Ready to join TalkBass and start posting, make new friends, sell your gear, and more?  Register your free account in 30 seconds.

Thumb rest on Warwick 5-string?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BassmanRon, Dec 31, 2004.


  1. BassmanRon

    BassmanRon

    Dec 31, 2004
    I never use a pick. I pluck with my fingers. With both of my Fender basses and (it seems) every other bass I've picked up, there is a good spot to anchor your thumb on the bass. It might just be the end of a pickup, but it works as a thumb rest.

    I'm getting used to my "new" Warwick Thumb bolt-on 5-string. The left hand is much less trouble than I feared, but my right hand is uncomfortable dangling in mid-air.

    If I rest my thumb on the end of a pickup, I'm plucking quite close to the bridge, which produces a "fneerp" tone I don't really intend. Between that spot and the fingerboard is the plucking "sweet spot" for the tone and punch I want, but there's no anchor/pivot point for my thumb.

    I don't want to carve a slot or mount a thumb rest if I can avoid mutilating this beautiful bass. Am I the only one who finds this awkward? Am I the only one who needs some sort of protrusion as a thumb rest?
     
  2. karrot-x

    karrot-x Banned

    Feb 21, 2004
    Omicron Persei 8
    You might try using the pickup selector to try and get your done while anchoring on the pickups.
     
  3. Skavenger

    Skavenger

    May 26, 2002
    Sweden
    I own two Warwicks that are both 4+ strings and I always anchor my thumb on the B. Except when I'm playing on the B...Obviously... ;)
     
  4. I had the same prob w/that bass, and the PU position coupled w/having to pluck so close to the bridge produced, for me, not much variety. I wanted to like that model so bad I went through 4 or 5 different ones & finally gave up. I still look longingly at Thumbs on ebay, etc; my wife rolls her eyes...
     
  5. 5stringFanatic

    5stringFanatic

    Mar 3, 2004
    NY, USA
    I have a Thumb bolt on 5 as well, and at first i had the same problem, but what i did was i lowered my action, and then playing near the bridge using the pickup as the thumb rest was comfrotable and the sound was the exact sound i was looking for out of the bass. I use the space between the pickups and the neck as the "slapping space" - i love the way they designed it, once i got used to it i love it.

    However, when i do want to play in the space between the pickups and the neck, i use the B string as my thumb rest. I am geting used to using it as my thumb rest on my other basses as well, even though they have a comfortable place to rest my thumb.

    H
     
  6. BassmanRon

    BassmanRon

    Dec 31, 2004
    Great suggestions, thank you!

    I guess I was sort of resting my thumb on the B string just to give my right hand a stable reference point, but the lack of tension (compared to a mounted rest) left me looking for something more.

    Perhaps I won't need anything more once my fingers get used to the slightly tighter string spacing compared to my Fender Precision Lyte Deluxe.

    I haven't ruled out mounting something as a thumb rest, if I or my bandmate (who is a luthier) can figure out how to do so without ruining the bass. On the other hand, this is potentially the last bass I will ever need to buy, so perhaps resale value is of little consequence.

    Next job: Learning how to drive this baby's pickup and EQ controls (not to mention passive and active switch) to get the tones I like best.
     
  7. You might try glueing a piece of wood just above the B string- the oil finish is easy to repair should you want to sell, & there's a wear spot on most used basses right there any way.
     
  8. BassmanRon

    BassmanRon

    Dec 31, 2004
    With a big assist from a bandmate who's a skilled luthier, I've added a little thumb rest to my Thumb. You can tell the location but not the shape from this photo. Picture a coin embedded in the wood, with only a 3/8th" edge poking out.

    He made the piece from ebony so it doesn't look out of place. I tried it out in a couple spots with double-sided tape before deciding. It didn't end up exactly where I wanted it, but pretty close. (I wanted it slightly more parallel to the strings, with the front edge not quite so close to the B.) It's attached with animal-hide glue that had to be heated to 150°F. He says he can take it back off if needed.

    So far, I'm delighted with how much better it feels to play the bass, though I'm not certain it's exactly the size, shape and location I want. I'm still getting used to the 5th string and the much tighter string spacing, compared to my Fender Precision Lyte Deluxe, so it's too early to say for sure.
     

    Attached Files:

  9. HamOnTheCob

    HamOnTheCob Jacob Moore Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Cambridge, Ohio, USA
    Endorsing Artist for Warwick Basses, Mesa Engineering, Joyo Technology, Dr. J Pedals, and Levy's Leathers
    On the 5-string Thumb BO I had, the previous owner had mounted a thumb rest just above the B string up near the neck. It totally just got in my way, so I removed it. As already mentioned, I just anchored on the B unless I was playing on it, in which case I would either not anchor at all, or just anchor on the pickup. I totally know what you mean about the tone playing down there, but it actually helps to have that extra definition on the B.

    Bottom line, don't sweat it. After playing it for a while, you won't even notice it, but you'll develop a playing position which is comfortable and sounds good.
     
  10. BassmanRon

    BassmanRon

    Dec 31, 2004
    >> ... or just anchor on the pickup. I totally know what you mean about the tone playing down there, but it actually helps to have that extra definition on the B. <<

    I played for quite a while tonight and noticed I was automatically plucking the B string further back by the pickups just to avoid snagging and lifting it too much. (The greater resistance or tension near the bridge helps prevent this.)

    The thumb rest accommodates this. Although it has that broad flat side facing me and rounded shape, I also can move my thumb around it, just as I did with my Fender Precision Lyte Deluxe. Placing the tip of my thumb against the near end of the tip will put my fingers closer to the bridge.

    If anything makes me sell this bass, it's going to be the tight string spacing. My left hand isn't troubled by this nearly as much as my right, which never occured to me. But I haven't given this bass a fair shot yet. If anything makes me keep this bass even if the awkward feel doesn't go away, it's going to be the sound. Yeah! (Who said Fender fans don't like the Warkwick sound?)
     
  11. I seem to remember that some pedulla models have a rubber thumb rest which can extend from the end of the neck to the bridge which is very small and runs parallel to the strings. IT looked very neat and very practical.

    I think Beaver Felton also had them installed on his Carvins but I'm not sure.
     
  12. Frank Martin

    Frank Martin Bitten by the luthiery bug...

    Oct 8, 2001
    Budapest, Hungary, EU
    My favourite setting: passive mode, EQ off, only using the balance pot :smug:
     
  13. HamOnTheCob

    HamOnTheCob Jacob Moore Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Cambridge, Ohio, USA
    Endorsing Artist for Warwick Basses, Mesa Engineering, Joyo Technology, Dr. J Pedals, and Levy's Leathers
    That's typically how I run my Streamer LX. The passive tone is real nice. My 5-string Thumb BO didn't have enough balls in passive mode for me. I needed some low boost. The Thumb BO 6 I have now though has plenty in passive mode. I really really like this bass the more I play it.