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What a difference a screw makes!

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by tb-player, Feb 20, 2021.

  1. tb-player

    tb-player Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    You may recall that I recently purchased a beautiful New Standard La Scala upright bass.

    In my excitement upon receiving it, I posted quite a few photos here on TB. At one point, I even reached out to Arnold Schnitzer to see if he had any history on the bass (built 2005). A few days later, he directed me to his former partner Wil DeSola. But he ended his correspondence with this...

    Jeff, get rid of those phillips-head screws in the tuners! That would never have happened in my shop! Cheers.

    I hadn’t even noticed until I went back & looked at the photo:

    So I took his advice & contacted Wil. He was very helpful. He gave me as much history on my bass as he knew. And he was kind enough to drop an envelope full of proper screws in the mail. That is customer service!

    I swapped out the screws and am surprised what a difference they make.

    Who knows when they got switched out for Phillips head in the past 16 years. But I do appreciate the heads up by Arnold and the generous assistance from Wil. It’s a subtle difference, but I really like it.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2021
    DrMole, groooooove, ericsmith and 4 others like this.
  2. buckthorn


    Jun 21, 2013
    Black Earth, WI
    That's a beauty. But hmm, no phillips heads on my La Scala tuners - no plates either. My La Scala was made in 2011.
  3. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I never looked before just now, but my LaScala hybrid has flathead screws on the tuner plates. I find this funny, because IRL I consider flathead screws to be the devil and inferior to Phillips head screws in every possible way. If I understand the history, my hybrid is the first one ever made, and still the hybrid picture up on their website.
    Pilgrim, RSBBass, Dabndug and 3 others like this.
  4. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Your bass now plays perfectly in tune having had this final adjustment!
    yodedude2, kinnon64, J_Bass and 6 others like this.
  5. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Supporting Member

    Another crisis averted!
  6. 16fuss

    16fuss Supporting Member

    Apr 25, 2005
    There must be some wrong screws on my basses. :D
  7. Ukiah Bass

    Ukiah Bass

    May 10, 2006
    I don't know. Seems awfully conservative. I think you should get wild and go with a square driver.


    Now if you REALLY want to get down and have a crazy time, go hex. They let you put a spell on listeners ... Drives the fans wild.

    Last edited: Feb 21, 2021
    RSBBass, eh_train and tb-player like this.
  8. tb-player

    tb-player Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    When you get chastised by Arnold Schnitzer himself, you do whatever he says. These definitely have a nicer appearance. He actually told me to get oval flat head brass screws. But that’s not what I was sent. I may get some to compare. It’s just funny that the plate screws were the first thing he saw.
  9. tb-player

    tb-player Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    Definitely no more neck dive! :thumbsup:
    Sam Sherry and unbrokenchain like this.
  10. misterbadger

    misterbadger Supporting Member

    Sep 13, 2012
    Northern California
    Those look like oval head screws, no?
    Slot head screws will help with intonation too, not to mention the obvious improvement in timing.
  11. Look oval to me too.

    I get nervous when I see the slots all in alignment with wood screws.

    Is "Twss!" too obvious for this thread?
    16fuss, Fretless55 and Sam Sherry like this.
  12. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    Yes. Good eye.
    You Nailed It.
    unbrokenchain likes this.
  13. Ed S

    Ed S

    Nov 14, 2019
    Yeah - sweet attention to detail!
  14. tb-player

    tb-player Supporting Member

    Mar 6, 2019
    I just googled it. I know nothing about wood screws. I guess I was expecting an oval shape. I now understand its an oval dome on the screw. Oops!! I learned something new today.

    I see what you did there.
    MYLOWFREQ and Don Kasper like this.
  15. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    A professional electrician will always align the screw head slots - thusly:
  16. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Heck, even I don't do that. Who's Mr. OCD now? :D
    yodedude2 and Michael Drost like this.
  17. Don Kasper

    Don Kasper Supporting Member

    It's just a matter of time.
    You're Welcome!
    Michael Drost likes this.
  18. Ed S

    Ed S

    Nov 14, 2019
    When I was in a classic car club, some members would do that w/ all the exposed screws (of which there were many on 60s Chevys). I never took things to that extreme! (My Corvair was a beater!)
  19. Sam Sherry

    Sam Sherry Inadvertent Microtonalist Supporting Member

    Sep 26, 2001
    Portland, ME
    Euphonic Audio "Player"
    Isn't that how you can tell the bass is in tune?
    carl h. and 16fuss like this.
  20. groooooove

    groooooove Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2008
    Long Island, NY
    i love that this detail is being addressed more commonly these days.

    Kieran o'hara pointed that out to me... I think one of the screws on a bass of mine he was working on had been replaced with a phillips head, and he pointed it out.

    ever since then it's something I cant un-see... looks much more elegant, and is more traditional/historically accurate.

    nice bass!!
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Feb 28, 2021

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