SOLD USA Made TBC "Stingray" Proto / Ulyate with MM and J Coils

Discussion in 'For Sale: Bass Guitars' started by Quadzilla, Apr 28, 2016.

  1. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member


    For sale only please (no trades).

    Just an FYI, the bass has roughly $500 worth of new electronics and fret work (leveling, crowning, etc). Plays and sounds amazing. Details below:

    My US made TBC (The Bass Company) Stringray style bass is a very well made bass (right there with US EB MM Stingray in my humble opinion). It came with a 2-Band preamp (like the old Stingrays) and a high-quality MM style pickup with Alnico poles.

    The sound tone of the stock setup was good, but not great in my opinion. Had decent highs, a scooped middle (a bit too scooped for me) and a loose, big bottom-end.

    So I started looking for different options and reading reviews, etc. I was intrigued by a similar model by Delano that also had a J coil and a MM coil. Then i started looking at other options. I came across the Proto Guitars pickups (made by Howard Ulyate). Reviews on Howard's pickups were stellar and I struck up a conversation with him and Matt (his partner @ Proto). The pickup seemed to be exactly what I was looking for, so I plunked down the cash. Link ---> Stingray Hybrid

    I also ordered a Stinger preamp (Retrovibe Stinger EQ : Classic Stingray 2-band Active Tone Circuit ) which is supposed to be an exact replica of the old, late 70's Musicman preamp. I had the preamp installed before installing Proto pickup. The Stinger preamp, while an improvement, didn't solve all of the issues that I was hearing (especially the undefined bottom-end, etc).

    Upon getting the box Proto, there was a Proto stamp on the back as well as another stamp that I found entertaining. :) The pickup was packaged well.

    I spoke to Matt about doing some coil tapping as well as series / parallel switching and the pickup was wired to allow for both options. I took my bass and the pickup over to my good buddy, electronics wiz and fellow TBer John Dahlman (JKDahlman here on TB).

    He added a 3-way switch for coil-taps and a 2 way switch for series and parallel.

    Firing her up, the difference was night and day! Wow! The highs were clear and not brittle, the mids were not nearly as scooped and the bottom was extremely well-defined and tight. The coil taps and series/para switching gave me a bunch of tonal options that didn't exist before. She performed wonderfully at several of my recent gigs. A very even pickup across the strings and pretty much virtually eliminated the dreaded dead G string that this bass had previously (many Musicman basses are also plagued with this). Just as a side note, I had tried the Fender "Fat Finger" clamp to help cure the dead G prior to doing the electronics upgrade and it didn't help. The new pickup seems to have fixed the issue.

    The bass has a good amount of dings and knocks but plays extremely well. The action is low as John Dahlman gave her a full fret leveling, crown and polish. Nut is 1.5" and the neck is very fast. Weight is probably between 9 and 10 lbs but I can weigh her tomorrow.

    Sounds and plays absolutely amazing. Very high build quality and the best electronics available for a Stingray (style) bass in my humble opinion. Quite versatile! $635 obo. No trades please.






    Factory pickup and controls:


    Proto Pickup now with the Stinger preamp, coil taps and series / parallel switches..






    Here is a video that Howard made to give you an idea of the tone of the pickup (in a different bass). It's really amazing and versatile.

    Last edited: May 1, 2016
    Dark Horse and mikezimmerman like this.
  2. TimBosby

    TimBosby Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2004
    Omaha, NE, USA
    Holy Moses, I dig this.
  3. maxschrek

    maxschrek Supporting Member

    Apr 9, 2006
    Chattanooga, TN.
    That's one good looking instrument!
  4. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    I would put the build quality and playability right there with a US Made Ernie Ball MM. I might even consider it superior. It's that good and it sounds better than a Ray with a single H and is FAR more versatile.
  5. peteybass


    Feb 26, 2008
    Roseville, CA
    Great looking bass and the best mods. Really tempting...
  6. Gully Foyle

    Gully Foyle

    Sep 28, 2014
    Near Boston
    Do you happen to know the neck pocket dimensions? Same as a Ray, or different?
  7. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Sorry, she's sold
  8. Gully Foyle

    Gully Foyle

    Sep 28, 2014
    Near Boston
    oh well - sorry i missed that - really nice looking bass