To be obsessive or not about keeping my bass mint?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by lamborghini98, Oct 31, 2005.

  1. lamborghini98

    lamborghini98 The Aristocrats

    May 1, 2005
    NYC; Portland, OR
    Ive always been one for wearing stuff out and making sure people know that I use it, but I think its mainly because I really cant make sure that NOTHING happens to my basses. I really didnt mind scratches and whatnot on my older basses, but I just got my first really nice bass, and Im wondering....

    Do people tend to really be obsessive about keeping their basses in mint condition? And if they do, what steps do they take to make sure nothing happens? Ideally I'd like to go down this road, but I dont really know if I have the discipline. One day when Im older Im sure Ill say "...and this is why we can't have nice things." and Ill get a flashback.

    Or... do people take the Jaco approach to aesthetic maintenance on really nice basses?
  2. mikekim


    Mar 16, 2005
    I keep my basses as mint as possible... but if they get a scratch or a ding or whatever, I'll not make a whole deal about it. Just adds personality.
  3. emjazz

    emjazz Supporting Member

    Feb 23, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Basses are meant to be played, peroid. I got the chance to take a lesson with Matt Garrison in NYC. When I got into the room I was fumbling around with my gig bag and my bass slid to the floor from the chair I was leaning it against. I looked at Matt and he laughed. He told me he does things like that all the time. I looked at his bass and it had had a few diggers I'm sure. Point being, be cautious (more cautious than I am) but play your bass. It's meant to be played, not babied or put in a closet so it stays "mint". That's my take anyway.
  4. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
    I'm a little anal about scratches and the stuff, as they get all over the back of my SX...but then again, its just an SX.

    Both of my basses cost me under 200 each, so I'm not all too worried...if it was one of those that cost over a few grand, of course then i'd be worried.
  5. With my P and J, I don't care if they get dinged and scratched too much cause they just look cooler and cooler. Just as long as it doesn't any real damage.

    When I get my Dingwall, I'm going to be much more careful with it, but I'm still gonna play the crap out of it!
  6. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    That's why I like to buy used. I don't make the first scratch. . . .
  7. +1

    By no means go out of your way to ding up your instrument, but at the same time, your instrument is your tool and is meant to be used so don't be afraid if you have to get it a little dirty in its line of work.
  8. theshadow2001


    Jun 17, 2004
    It's really not that hard to keep your bass mint. Always use a guitar stand when your not holding it leave it in it's case when not in use. After a sweaty gig give it a rub down before you put it away and give it maintenance when needed such as truss rod adjustments or whatever. But if you do get dings on it dont be too worked up about it or anything.
  9. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I agree. A little fretboard conditioner or lemon oil for the board once in awhile, a little cleaning & polishing for the finish every so often, avoiding prolonged exposure to extremes of temperature and/or humidity, covering your belt buckle when you play it, keeping it out of the hands of idiots, etc.

    Really, it's just a matter of taking a little proactive thought, then following through in common-sense fashion - just as you would do to protect the value of any other investment. Right?

  10. don't obsess over it. one stupid little technique someone told me years ago;

    when you have a possession that is really important to you, realize it will not last forever. you won't own it forever in its present condition. then imagine it is completely destroyed - broken into a million pieces on the floor. visualize it and accept it could happen. then you begin to truly appreciate it (for what it is) and take reasonable measures to preserve its value. so no matter what happens, you were prepared and made the most of it while you had it.

  11. unity bass

    unity bass

    Dec 15, 2003
    Modesto, Ca.
    Hanging mine on the wall has protected it from plenty of mishaps that my other bass suffered from when it was carelessly balanced in some precarious way.

    That being said, play it and enjoy it.

    I like the way emjazz put it, "It's meant to be played..."

  12. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    It is meant to be played, while I don't beat it up, I do baby it, but I don't obsess.
  13. The first time I knocked my bass and put a little chip in the finish, I was shattered! :eek:

    But, after while I learned to live with it, and the fact that these things happen. I still baby my bass, but since then it's managed to get another few marks on it.

    Hey, it happens. None of us like beating up on our basses, but they will get marks on them - it adds character ;)
  14. I have the misfortune of owning a swamp ash backed oil finish Warwick... Breath on it and it dents! I worry about it because its my pride and joy, but I dont let it stop me playing it or taking it anywhere. I wax it every week (I'm a bit obsessive, but I love the smell of the wax!) and keep it clean, but If it dents it dents. Its not how it looks after all, its how it sounds and plays that counts.
  15. +1
  16. more wear makes them sound, play and look better

    as rhonda smith says, its gonna get dinted, scratched and worn.....get over it

    now as if this doesnt say im sexy
  17. popinfresh


    Dec 23, 2004
    Melbourne, Aus
    +1 on not caring (to an extent).

    The only problem is my Pearl Blue Sterling isn't the best coloured bass for wear and tear.

    Worn sunburst though is sexy as a woohar.
  18. Mr_Dave


    Mar 11, 2005
    Melbourne, Australia
    Employee - Basscentre Melbourne
    yeah, i've not worried about my japanese fenders so much but my new sadowsky has been getting babied... :D

    i got a nice gig bag and i put in in there between sets on gigs so it doesn't get knocked over or nothing. but its now got heaps of hairline scratches so ill be less careful gradually. its definitly a players bass!!!

    funny story though. was just doing a gig at wangaratta jazz festival in victoria australia on the weekend. did 2 4 hour gigs one 10pm-2am saturday night and the other 5-9pm sunday playing with a funky blues orginal artist. the gigs were really pissing me off by sunday coz i was tired and we got paid less that we were supposed to and then after the last song he introduces everyone but me??? so having the anger problem a i have, i take my 62 cij reissue off the strap hold it up about head height and drop it flat on its back... really killed the mood... oops... rather silly really... thought all was good. wasn't really out of tune then i looked the next day. huge dip/chip about a inch round and half an inch deep on the back of teh bass :eek: must have had studs or blolt heads on the stage under the carpet. all good though, still plays and sounds great and you cant see it from the front... :)
  19. Wilbyman


    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    +1 too.
  20. Dirty Dave

    Dirty Dave

    Oct 17, 2004
    Boston, MA
    When I bought my first bass that cost over $1000 I obsessed over it for the first couple months. It seemed the more I tried to baby it the more banged up it would get - Murphy's law I guess. Ironically, once I stopped really caring so much about its appearance, new scratches and dents became less frequent.

    If you dig stress, then obsess. Otherwise, just relax and enjoy your axe. ;)