to defret or not to defret....

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jsingles, Jun 30, 2008.

  1. so i just bought myself a new american deluxe jazz bass, and my schecter has been finding itself sitting on a stand since i bought the fender.... the fender can do everything the schecter can do and more.

    so ive begun to gas for a fretless bass, but im realizing my schecter c-4 would make a KILLER fretless bass... it has that growl... I would love for it to be fretless.

    but this bass is NOT a peice of junk, and my parents gave it to me. its my first bass, so I worry that if I myself tried to defret it, I would ruin it.. which would suck alot.

    are there any people who offer a service such as defretting an instrument and preparing it for fretless playing?

    edit: would it be difficult to find a replacement neck for a schecter C-4?
  2. Luthiers?
  3. You could certainly get it done, but it's not that difficult. Defretting was all the rage a year or two ago; search up some old threads. There's likely a stickie somewhere.
  4. Any qualified luthier can defret a bass without any concern. I had mine done and he did a fantastic job. He filled in the holes with wood, filed down the nut to bring the touch down, and put a hardner on the rosewood fretboard to protect it from the strings.

    Mind you it does affect the value of the bass, but you don't seem to be ready to sell it, so that shouldn't matter. Defretting would breath new life into an instrument that would otherwise sit in a case unplayed.
  5. haha well heres the thing.. i DID do a HORRID defretting job on a crappy old peavy with my friend, and it didnt exactly turn out well.... i suppose in theory i could do an extra careful job on my bass, but if there was a luthier in the boston area willing to defret it nicely for me, I would rather that.

    also.. i have no idea what this would cost :bag:
  7. Jsingles-
    I'd recommend buying a used fretless, and not take apart a bass you really like. There's lots of comments about the Modified Squier and SM fretless series.
  8. It should cost about $200, maybe $180 to get it defretted. It may vary depending on location though.
  9. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    If the bass in question is a bolt-on, get another neck and keep the original pristine.

    Failing that, leave it alone. You can get a fretless for the $200-$300 range you cite.
  10. Most of the time I post on these threads I highly doubt that the person who wrote it will listen if you say to do something they already have there mind set on. I would never de-fret a bass again. Buy some P.O.S. bass like one of those SX bass guitars that is fretless and try one for a year. I had a fretless for ten years and can tell you that its different and not for a novice.
  11. lpdeluxe

    lpdeluxe Still rockin'

    Nov 22, 2004
    Deep E Texas
    There's a sticky in the "Setup and Repair" forum. Check it out -- lots of info and no need to reinvent the wheel.
  12. steve21

    steve21 Inactive

    I'm a huge fan of modding basses. And I love fretless.

    Defret the sucker. Find the geocities guide that some TB'er made a while ago and follow it. It's REALLY STUPID EASY and you shouldn't mess up if you're careful.
  13. lol some mixed reviews here..

    it IS interesting to consider that I could purchase an SX fretless.....

    but then my schecter still rots (and i am never selling it)
  14. Connor


    Jun 21, 2007
    defret it, it's easy, just take your time, really as long as it plays well, it shouldn't matter how ****** the job looks.
  15. You could also just buy a new fingerboard, although it might be difficult to spec one out as a direct drop for your Schecter. I know people have done it for Fenders and Rics in the past. Don't ask me how they removed the old one! :D

    I defretted my Squier and I don't regret it, although I did dent the fingerboard a lot! Take your time and that shouldn't happen.
  16. Rocinante_x1

    Rocinante_x1 Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

    Aug 22, 2004
    dont defret it. If you want to play fretless, get a cheap yet nice neck and defret that one. There's an ebay store that sells fender american parts. Theyre called the stratosphere. try them out.
  17. thanks for all your advice, buying a cheap fretless is NOTa bad idea, but I think I would end up with a better bass if i defret my schecter, one that I know sounds good, and then i wouldnt have basses uselessly laying around.

    maybe I will attempt it myself, as long as I am REALLY careful.

    and as far as the replacement neck thing goes, it would be difficult to replace this neck, a fender style neck is nothing like this one.
  18. i defretted my ibanes sdgr when i got my fender jag and was shunning the ibanez. i cearefully lifted out the frets with a penknife, and filled the gaps with woodfiller, and now it sounds amazing!

    if you love your bass but its not getting played, go for it!
  19. steve21

    steve21 Inactive

    If you're really worried, don't buy an SX bass. Just buy one of their necks

    and practice on it. Use different techniques, find the one(s) that work really well, and you're in business. Practice WILL make perfect.
  20. bh2


    Jun 16, 2008
    Oxford, UK
    I defretted my '61 Jazz.... it was just sitting in it's case... now It's my favourite and most played bass.