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To Mod, or Not To Mod...

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mikewalker, Dec 7, 2018.

  1. As is: a G-bass with Tapewounds and passive humbucker

    2 vote(s)
  2. Upgrade: a G-bass with Tapewounds and full active EMG system

    0 vote(s)
  3. Normalize: roundwounds, tune down to E, passive humbucker

    1 vote(s)
  4. Alternative: E tuning, roundwounds, full EMG system

    0 vote(s)
  5. Alter-Alternative: E-tuning, flatwounds, passive humbucker

    0 vote(s)
  6. Alter-Alter-Alt: Heavy rounds, downtuned, full EMG system

    0 vote(s)
  7. Strip out all electronics and route for carrots (organic)

    0 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    OK, I would really appreciate the expert opinion of our hive mind here... Selling all my basses!
    ( well, not really... but 10 of 14, so it feels like it! )

    Anyway, I have this one little mint-green gem that's going to join the others on the chopping block soon, and I'm really torn as to what I should do with it.
    MM_micro (3).
    MM_micro (1).
    MM_micro (2).

    It's a "Mikro-scale" MM-style 4-string, and when it arrived from the maker it had normal nickel roundwounds on it, and played fine. BUT I got it in my head that I should put tapewounds on it, and so now it's got a set of LaBella White Gold tapewounds. And this is where it gets interesting...

    The stock pickup is amazingly noise free (excellent humbucker, one of the best in my house!) but being obsessive about all sorts of hum and noise, I decided that since the bass sounds AMAZING with the tapewounds, it really deserved to have a 'true tapewound system' (EMG actives, to compensate for the lack of string ground).

    So.. I have an EMG MM CS ready to drop in it. And a couple EMG active tone controls, VMC control? EXB control? I forget which ones exactly... but it's a three knob bass, so I wanted to make them all useful. Anyway, the bass is still basically unplayed, and I really haven't had time to do anything with it the last couple of years. So all these parts are still in the boxes! Do I go ahead and install them - does anyone aside from me obsess about this stuff? If I do install them: battery under the pickguard, or route a battery box in the back? (Yes, I already have one ready...) The bass is perfectly usable as it is, so maybe I'm just throwing money (and time!!) away by modding it?

    Also... I'm a bit fanatical about fret rattle, and I found the (low-tension) tapewounds were quite floppy on that 28.7 inch scale! Not to my liking to crank the action up, so instead I increased the tension. Tuned the bass up to G! Had to tweak the truss rod just slightly, but end result is it feels exactly how I like it, albeit tuned up to G-C-F-Bb. Great for playing in key of G :)

    But maybe most other people don't want a G-bass? Perhaps I should put a set of rounds on it, and tune it back down to E?? Or even put on a set of HEAVY rounds, and tune it down to D or C? Or Flatwounds?? It's got a great truss-rod and excellent fretwork, so it can swing either way, I am sure :)

    Anyway, it's a beautiful and unique instrument, and I'm sure it'll find a good home either way. But I do value your opinions, and I hope you will indulge me and pop in a vote!
  2. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    Wow, buried on page three overnight? Guess I should post in the daytime! (Bump hoping for more input...)
  3. derrico1

    derrico1 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Charlottesville, VA
    In general, nonstandard mods aren't going to recoup their costs or broaden a bass's appeal on the used market—especially on a niche item.

    If you're compulsive enough that you'll find making the mods satisfying (in a "it just feels right!" kinda way), then that might be its own reward. Which is probably lucky, because fat financial rewards aren't likely.
    mikewalker likes this.
  4. felis


    Jul 31, 2013
    Midwest, USA
    I'd say if you're going to sell it - just sell it.

    If you'd be keeping it and want to change it to your liking, then do that.
    Unless it just floats your boat modding stuff.
    mikewalker likes this.
  5. Lesfunk

    Lesfunk Supporting Member

    Sell it as is
    Let the buyer chose his own options
    mikewalker likes this.
  6. ejaggers

    ejaggers Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2009
    Fort Worth, tx
    I would only mod something I'm going to keep. But then, I keep all my basses so I'm the wrong one to ask.
    Generally speaking, modding is for personal preference, not for profit.

    mikewalker likes this.
  7. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    Ya know... that makes perfect sense. [doh!] Sell all the parts to those who might need them for their own ends, and put the bass up as is. ( actually I have a number of basses in the same boat - sitting in storage with piles of parts ready for planned upgrades). I collected all the stuff with the idea I was gonna have quite a wide selection of basses on hand in the studio - but now it looks like the room isn't going to get built any time soon, and I have drifted firmly towards only playing medium scales myself! I guess I keep thinking I have more time on my hands than I really do...:oops:

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