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What the...!!? Hole in MIA 2009 Fender P body under pick guard

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by boristhespider7, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. boristhespider7


    Jan 27, 2008
    Ok, i just happened to remove the pick guard for my 2009 MIA P bass the first time other day to notice this dirty great hole in the body. :mad:

    It's between the neck and the split PU, a well cut 3/4" circular hole. Right where i'd want to screw in a thumb rest for some vintage mojo:mad:

    I've searched through the forums and found quite a few references to CNC holes. It seems that some people think they are used for the routing machinary to grip and some people think they are identifiers for different bodies. Anyone got any answers which? Also they don't appear on all Fender bodies, reading around it seems hit and miss with different bodies and locations (MIM, MIJ vs MIA). Whats that all about?
    Anyone else got the same hole in their P body for their 2009ish?

    Guess i'm a bit peeved...why Fender?:confused:

    Attached Files:

    FenderB likes this.
  2. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    It is a tone hole, used to tune each piece of wood to the appropriate Pbass growl. Depth and diameter vary the effect.


    In all honesty I was under the impression the CNC version was the correct reason. Why be mad about it? It changes nothing of the bass.
  3. pgolliher


    Apr 27, 2010
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Huh, that is kind of a bummer. I can see why you are peeved. Odd quality control, especially since you threw down the coin for an MIA. You could try to glue in a dowel and still put in the thumbrest. Good luck!
  4. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    It's for hiding your stash, maaan.
    craigie and Precision101 like this.
  5. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    It is not a flaw, it is how that CNC machine holds the body to cut it apparently.
  6. Stone Soup

    Stone Soup

    Dec 3, 2012
    It's a locator for the CNC machining process.
  7. LutherHeggs00


    Apr 11, 2006

    Honestly though, that sucks. There's gotta be a better way.
  8. Fletz

    Fletz Supporting Member

    Jan 16, 2009
    New Jersey
    Hartke artist
    As far as I know it's part of the automated machine process. It's where the body is held by the machine. It's the norm. Is it pretty? No. Does it mean you can't take the pg off? Pretty much. It's the norm. Sorry, dude.
  9. Scott in Dallas

    Scott in Dallas Commercial User

    Aug 16, 2005
    Dallas, north Texas
    Builder and Owner: DJ Ash Guitars
    I thought they were only on the MIM basses. Not that it matters. If it were a Jazz, I'd be pissed.
    AlexanderB and AngelCrusher like this.
  10. Lowbrow

    Lowbrow Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2008
    Pittsburgh PA!
    Surprised me, too. Well cut hole, tho.
  11. As already stated, its probably used by the CNC machine. Its not a big deal really, completely covered by the pickguard, doesnt affect sound much as far as i know.
  12. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon.

    Yup. Hash hole.:p

    It is for the CNC. They all have them.
  13. smcd


    Jun 28, 2009
    Boston, MA
    Yes, thousands and thousands of people own Fender guitars with holes like that. The CNC explanation makes some sense. The "body ID" story makes no sense at all.

    Why would you be peeved at Fender? Do you think this factory rout affects the sound?? :eyebrow:
  14. t77mackie


    Jun 13, 2012
    Wormtown, MA
    Hmmm... fishy. There's no reason that would have to be cut to facilitate the machine process - other than bad engineering or laziness. There's a million and one ways to mount a block of wood (and get your X,Y,Z coordinates) in a CNC without affecting the finished product.

    I had the same question about holes when I unpick-guarded my VMJB. Seems like just an easy way to run wires and well, basically, save a few cents on the manufacturing process.

    Tone hole? I'd believe that to make my wallet feel better...

    My solution was to make a tiny pick guard to replace the full sized one.

    -Good luck!
  15. pbassnut

    pbassnut Supporting Member

    Sep 27, 2004
    Falls Church, VA
    Unfortunately, it's done quite a bit on Fenders ... all my American/American Standard bodies have one. I recently built a Franken60thAnniversary Precision from a body I got off eBay. It has a really nice swamp ash body with a spectacular grain pattern and a stunning see through nitro tobacco sunburst. I might've actually preferred to use it without a pickguard if it weren't for that annoying CNC cutout. I don't really understand what it buys for them when so many other mass produced bass bodies don't employ them.

    BTW, I don't know if Fender standardizes where they put their CNC cutouts, but none of mine are where the thumbrest screws are supposed to go ... you might want to double-check that the location you want to install it in is the right one (under the assumption that you want it to be "vintage correct").
  16. Arial Bender

    Arial Bender

    Oct 28, 2012
    Largo Fla.
    I actually expected to see one under my 2010 Am. Special and there was none?
  17. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    How the material is held depends on the machine being used. Fender must've felt the benefits gained from whatever machine uses that hole (cost of machine, time to cut, time to load/remove body, automation of loading/removal, training of people required to run machine, etc) outweighed the unsightlyness of the hole under the pickguard.
  18. MattBradford


    Nov 22, 2012
    my MIM fender blacktop jazz bass has this hole exactly, and there was alot of wax grains under the pickguard aswell as all of the screw holes being burred
  19. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007
    i wont care in a P bass because the PG will cover it, however, I will hate it in Jazz bass.
  20. What are you talking about. Jazz basses have pickguards too.

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