true 6 string bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by rylie, Jun 16, 2019.

  1. rylie


    Sep 25, 2017
    somewhere stable
    OK, maybe this has been asked here before...does anyone know of a manufactured 6 string bass? I'm not asking about the Fender VI 6 string baritone guitar, but a true EADGBE strung bass? Simply taking the standard bass strings EADG and adding a B and a traditional guitar is strung. Yes, I realize 6 string basses are made and played every day, however that is usually strung BEADGC.
  2. Keith Guitars

    Keith Guitars Supporting Member Commercial User

    Aug 25, 2004
    Woodstock, NY
    Builder: Martin Keith Guitars
    Kiesel is making 30" scale 6-strings which could easily be tuned this way.
    Probably as close as you'll get to a "production" instrument.
    HolmeBass and TolerancEJ like this.
  3. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    I imagine a BEADGC bass could be converted to an EADGBE bass with a different nut. Shouldn’t be a Big Deal at all.

    I’ve also wondered if such a bass could be made with interchangeable nuts secured in place by strong magnets to accommodate changing the stringing. Probably doable, but I don’t know how much fine-tuning could be done with such a system.

    I personally would have no need for such a bass. If I ever get a 6-string, it will be BEADGC. But my mind wonders (wanders?) about such things at times...:D
  4. Axstar

    Axstar Inactive

    Jul 8, 2016
    I thought I saw a true 6-string bass one time, but it was a 3-string bass sitting next to a mirror.

    Robbed again.
    BrBss, groooooove, twinjet and 9 others like this.
  5. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    And here I am, thinking that a BEADGC bass actually IS a true 6 string.
    R0VER, Omega Monkey, The_Owl and 47 others like this.
  6. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    A different nut is not required, just different strings.

    I have a 5 I switch back and forth between BEADG and EADGC with the stock nut.

    You do have to be careful to wind the thickest two strings to the bottom of the post to get good downpressure on the slots, but other than that there's no issue.

    The same thing can be done just as easily on a 6.
  7. Geri O

    Geri O Endorsing Artist, Mike Lull Guitars and Basses Gold Supporting Member

    Sep 6, 2013
    Florence, MS
    Cool, I was afraid that a nut for a B string would be too wide for an E string to settle in properly. This is good to know.

    Does the change necessitate a truss rod tweak?
  8. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    EADGBE has a much higher pressure on the truss rods than BEADGC, so most likely yes.
  9. Tim Schnautz

    Tim Schnautz

    Jan 30, 2000
    Ive never seen a production model of anything like what the OP is enquiring. Not saying it can’t be, but I’m also wondering who would or does make a dedicated string set for it?

    Making Barr chords on an electric bass 6?

  10. bearfoot

    bearfoot Inactive

    Jan 27, 2005
    Chittenango, NY
  11. OptimalOptimus


    Jan 4, 2019
    Nothing stop you from buying a normal 6 strings bass and strung it EADGBE like a guitar ... with two higher strings than a standart bass ... or you could try a 8 strings bass set and instead of F# you tune it E ... your B strings become A etc ...
    It would be low but at the same time... sounds interesting
    Waltsdog, dBChad and Element Zero like this.
  12. thewildest


    May 25, 2011
    Florida, USA
    I have 6 string basses tuned both ways and they are both true.
    Not looking to fight or challenge here, given the additional explanation offered by the OP, but I wouldn’t define “true”, but “a 6 string bass tuned EADGCF or (which I totally would‘t recommend) EADGBE, which perpetuates the guitar’s insane tuning humanity has had to cope for many generations.
    DrayMiles, zoonose and LeonD like this.
  13. Tommy V

    Tommy V

    Feb 19, 2019
    for what it's worth, the Fender Bass VI is a true EADGBE strung bass.. the originals were, and the reissues are, as well.
    TheReceder, DDXdesign, JMarkD and 7 others like this.
  14. Jonithen


    Dec 3, 2012
    Seacoast NH
    Buy whatever you think a "true" six string bass is, get some kind of tuner, and a new set of strings and tune it to whatever you want and rest assured that you are more faithful to the platonic ideal of what a six string bass should be in your head than I am.
  15. Thumpin6string

    Thumpin6string Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2013
    Shoals Indiana
    Why? What is the point if you don't have a low B? The low B is true bass. Are you planning to play guitar chords on it? Guitar style lead solos?:confused:
    pellomoco14 and JC Nelson like this.
  16. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Depends entirely on the string gauges you use.
    If you keep the total pounds of tension the same the neck won't move.

    Debating each other's conceptual validity, ie 'trueness', is best left for jr high lunchroom conversations.
  17. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    I can say that I've never seen that question ever asked here before in that fashion.
  18. Epitaph04

    Epitaph04 Always overcompensating Supporting Member

    Jul 5, 2010
    Damn what the hell have I been playing the last 10 years then?!