Turning a 34" scale into a 35"

Discussion in 'Luthier's Corner' started by Ozzel, Dec 15, 2004.

  1. Suppose I have a Fender J that I'd like to convert to a 35" scale. Could I just make a 35" scale neck for the original body, or does the body have to be different, too?

    Thanks in advance for your answers.
  2. budman

    budman Commercial User

    Oct 7, 2004
    Houston, TX
    Formerly the owner/builder of LeCompte Electric Bass
    It's do-able...probably. You would most likely end up with an extra higher fret or two 'cause you're moving the nut farther away. If I was going to do it I would probably make the neck a 24 fret, assuming you have a 21 or 22 fret neck, and route out a longer neck pocket, making sure it was in the proper place with reference to the existing bridge placement. I have to ask why you would consider such a mod?
  3. _Unregistered_


    Nov 3, 2004
  4. Why wouldn't I?

    B strings on Fender 5's have a rep for feeling floppy and sounding unfocused. Some say a pro setup can help, but wouldn't an extra inch go a long way?
  5. _Unregistered_


    Nov 3, 2004
    Try my favorite fix. I use D'Addario XL 170s...only instead of the standard XL 170 five-string set, I use a 145 low B in conjunction with a XL 170 four-string set. Evens out the "floppies" rather handily.

    Note: You may have to mod the bridge slightly (open it up just a tad) for the larger string. I've had to on a couple basses. In the case of a few other basses, I just take a pliers, and lightly squeeze any "wild" windings down by the ball end flush with the rest, and it fits right on. It's worth a try before you drop big digit on a neck...
  6. Ok, but you didn't SAY you had a 5 until now.
  7. Mike N

    Mike N Missing the old TB

    Jan 28, 2001
    New York
    Another inch and I'd be a millionaire. :D
  8. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
    Fret spacing is different between 34" & 35" scale. I don't think you can just move the nut or the bridge w/o screwing up the intonation.
  9. oops. :scowl:
  10. I don't think it's worth it. Some 35" basses have floppy B strings as well, while some 34" basses have excellent B strings. Try a pro setup and experiment with different types of strings (tapered vs. non-tapered, different gauges). I think the whole "35 makes for a better B" is a myth. Good luck.
  11. He's talking about switching to a 35" neck, with proper fret spacing and all. It can be done. :)
  12. McHack


    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
    Ah, if he gets a 35" neck, its possible... Dunno where you're gonna get one... I don't think Warmoth offers a 35" scale for there standard necks... they do for their Gecko's tho, I'm pretty sure... but that's not a standard neck joint. It could be done.
  13. Go unlined fretless, and you can make it any scale you want, as long as the bridge fits

    (ok, a little too flip, sorry) ;)