1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  


Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Guiseppe, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. The thumbrest definitely adds to playability.

    21 vote(s)
  2. Don't do it. Use the PUP like I do.

    24 vote(s)
  3. Use a carrot.

    13 vote(s)
  1. Guiseppe


    Oct 26, 2003
    Vancouver, WA
    The first bass I owned (a Hondo J copy, back in the late 70's) had a thumb rest installed - on the E string side, where you would expect it. I've kicked around putting one on a few basses I've had, and now that I'm just about done w/ my Franken-Geddy, I'm pretty sure I'll do it. I've used my neck or my neck PUP for the longest time as a reference point...I'm just about to the point of no return. What do all of you think?
  2. StarscreamG1


    Dec 17, 2007
    My first bass had a thumb rest at the E string as well. My T40 had a thumb rest too. I don't remember if my EB-0 had one or not. None of the ones I own now, after getting back into it, have thumb rests. Took a little getting used to. I either use a pup or I use the neck at the body (or the E string itself). I doubt I will ever put thumb rests on them but it wouldn't have hurt my feelings any had they come with them.

    I am also used to a bridge cover (My first bass got me spoiled on that) and a pup cover (first bass too) which is nice to rest on when you play with a pick. But again none of the ones I have no have them either. Eh, I just adapt and move on.

    I say go with whatever works for you. ^_^
  3. To be honest, I feel naked without a thumbrest. If it's not there, I have a hard time feeling stable on a bass when finger plucking.
  4. RBrownBass

    RBrownBass Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2004
    I'd try to learn to play without a thumbrest. It's not the big deal some folks will say it is, but if you ever end up playing a style of music that doesn't call for you to play over the neck pup or the end of the fingerboard, you'll appreciate the ability to move your right hand to different positions without the rest.
  5. Hawaii Islander

    Hawaii Islander Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2007
    Rio Rico, AZ
    I think it can be helpful especially for fingerpicking close to the neck. I had one on my MIM Jazz (my nephew took it off). I don't have one on my P-bass or Ibanez SR506.
  6. ::::BASSIST::::

    ::::BASSIST:::: Progress Not Perfection.

    Sep 2, 2004
    Vancouver, BC Canada
    I must have a thumbrest. But then I'm a hack. I use the edge of the neck if I must, but prefer my thumbrest as I have bit of foam on it to absorb sweat and help keep my thumb planted and combfortable.

    Adjusting your strap makes a big difference where you can combfortably place the thumbrest.

    Worse case scenario, if your'e not happy with the thumbrest placement you can always just buy a new pickguard. With my black pickguard, I've had success with just using black electrical tape over the holes that are no longer used.
  7. steve21

    steve21 Banned

    Personally, I'm an avid fan of pickup covers as thumb/palm rests. I will most likely be adding one to my P-bass.
  8. I've "retrained" myself from a stuck-on-pickup fingerstyle player to a "floater" to gain the differences in tone to can find from say, playing up near the highest fret ala TLev as part of his signature "dubby" tone to right over the bridge pup much like Dave LaRue (I'll actually go somewhere other than "The J-Man" for the Bridge pickup sound ;) ) and well as not "locking" my thumb on the lowest string and stretching for the higher strings, whih I've read/heard isn't the best of positions for your RH and can lead to Carpel-Tunnel and other nasty physical ailments... but I still like having something solid underneith my thumb when I'm riding on the E or B-strings.

    I've voted "carrots" as most of my basses have soapbar-casing pickups that give you far more room to more around as opposed to your typical "J"-pickups and can absolutely understand regarding a J-bass which has far less pickup room to use. I'd go with a thumbrest, but only if you're attaching it to a pickguard and not drilling into the wood itself, and having a good one made - I've seen nice ones that don't take away from the bass, and cheap, ruhed ones that stick out like a sore... thumb.

    Perhaps think about having a Ramp made? IMO they're far more asthetically pleasing than just a tumbrest, and serve much more of a service to your playing technique than a "simple" thumbrest.
  9. robert43


    Jun 5, 2007
    I had 1 on my Jazz parts bass was a bit worried about marking pickgaurd with extra screw hole put 1 screw in with double sided tape . Tried it for time but then took it off & never installed it & dont miss it
  10. I ordered a thumbrest on my Mouse 30 since there wasn't going to be a magnetic pickup where I could anchor my thumb. In the process of using it, I discovered that there are some nice tonal sweet spots if you position your fingers where the 27th stop would be.
  11. i voted carrots cause i always do, but i never use a thumb rest, my first had one, it came off
  12. mero


    Apr 17, 2003
    At first I used the PU as a resting spot for my thumb and did it for quite some time. When I moved to a 5 string bass, I used the B string as a resting spot. Nowadays when playing 4 or 5 I tend to use the E or B string or none at all. So I guess I donĀ“t need a PU or thumbrest. Plus, particularly on my fretless, it gives you a lot of tonal variability playing right close to the bridge or neck, hence it is good to be able to move around without a definitive resting place.

    Bottomline, just go with what you feel confortable playing. :)
  13. lowbass68


    Feb 3, 2008
    Do what ever makes you feel more comfortable and makes you play better. Below is my "lead" bass. Started out as a homebuilt P-J bass, then added a second J between the bridge and existing J pup for extra high end harmonics. Added a thumb rest betweet the P and J pup and between the P and neck. Later removed the rest between the neck and P. Also added a piece of plexiglass between the P and neck below the D/G string to help with my pop technique. Strange mods but they work for me. Yep, they are ugly mods too but that bass has over 20 years of playing on it.
  14. allexcosta


    Apr 7, 2004
    Neither. Floating thumb is a much better technique and won't stress your joints and ligaments.
  15. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low

    Aug 19, 2007
    Mid Hudson Valley, NY
    I've never had a thumbrest. On my original Pbass I used to anchor my thumb on the pickups or fingorboard, now I use a combination of anchoring on strings and Floating Thumb.
  16. Hoover

    Hoover Banned

    Nov 2, 2007
    New York City
    Back in 1976 one of my very first basses (a Fender Precision) had a thumb rest, which I used regularly and appreciated and basically assumed was a necessity. So I installed thumbrests on my next two basses (a Peavey T-40 and an SD Curlee).

    And they just got in the way.

    So I haven't used a thumbrest in over twenty years. On the other hand, I'm sort of kicking myself for not ordering the thumbrest option on the Rob Allen MB-2 I just got last fall, as there are no pickup covers to anchor my thumb to. I wind up using the edge of the fingerboard or the B string, but I suspect a strategically placed thumbrest would be welcome.

    Either that, or it would just get in the way.
  17. mccartneyman


    Dec 22, 2006
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Managing Editor, Bass Guitars Editor, MusicGearReview.com
    I've been playing 43 year and have never rested my thumb on anything. I don't understand why you need leverage to play. And I do not have a light touch.
  18. I don't use my rests as leverage but a familiar place I place my thumb for tonal consistency.
  19. El-Bob

    El-Bob Supporting Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Hamilton, ON
    i anchor my thumbs on my strings, and use my bridge pup for my B string, but i'm also gonna put a thumb rest between the bridge and pup on my short scale P. not sure if it's much help, but that's what i do:p

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.