Who can design a body for me ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Doryan, Aug 13, 2002.

  1. I'm going to have my bass build by someone, but he couldn't get up with a shape I like.

    So I'm looking for some of you guys to post a great (original) design for me.

    I'm thinking about getting it headless, but I never saw a bodyshape that went pretty well with headless. So that's a little challenge :) .
    But even designs with heads are ok, I might like it.

    Some additional information:

    - 4-string, 24 frets
    - one or two jazz pick-ups at the bridge, nothing else
    - I play mainly metal, so sorta keep this in mind :p :D
    - There will be no control knobs on a bass of mine :), so don't worry about them.

    The one who comes up with a design I like get's my Ibanez Phat-Hed !!!!
  2. It doesn's has to be a detailed drawing, a sketch will be fine.
    The detailes in measurements may be up with the builder.
    You might do it if you want or if you think it's easier to design.
  3. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    That's going to be pretty hard to do - if you can't come up with a shape that you like, what chance does someone else have (and what are you paying for the service... ;) ).

    Why not surf the web or browse some magazines and come up with a list of body shapes that you do like. Now, critique each one - what works and what doesn't. Take the best elements from several and see what they look like put together.

    Also, don't forget that the most important element of bass design is functionality - will it be easy to find a suitable case, where will the centre of gravity be, etc. Learn from those who've gone before rather than trying to create ex nihilo.


  4. JP Basses

    JP Basses

    Mar 22, 2002
    Paris FRANCE

    Here is a bass I buil few years ago. Headless, one pickup, on/off switch and output jack! A bit Alembic styled ;-)


    Feel free to use the shape if you like it!

  5. That's why I ask bass players/builders here to do it. If I tried to design it myself that would be ex nihilo.

    I suck at visual designs, but I now what I like when I see it.

    And surfing around to see what I like, then I might not get something original. I once saw one on the webb that I like, but it was a custom for that guy and I don't want to steel his creativity.

    What am I paying: the person can get my Ibanez Phat-Hed but it's mostly a favour that I expect, from someone who likes to design basses and it's not in it for the money.

    Or just gimme me some ideas, that would be cool too.
  6. Thanks JP basses. But to symmetric for me. :)
  7. JP Basses

    JP Basses

    Mar 22, 2002
    Paris FRANCE

    you may collect body shapes you like and extend on them.

    Print them an then copy yhem and paper and try to change the bottom, one horn.... You'll may and with somethng you like.

    BTW who is building your bass? You must talk with the luthier about the shape because he'll tell you whow it would balance, fit the parts and stuff like that!

  8. Here... Very Crude... but effective. it would have two wooden pickups, and a normal sized n eck, jsut I had to shorten it to add in the headstock.. enjoy
  9. He really knows how shape will effect sound, so he'l probably do some adjustments to the design.
    But the only basses he builded where classic designs: P-bass, J-bass, les paul, flying V,...
    Or some freaky silhouette design by users who really don't care much about sound, but about appearence.

    Mine has got to be sober but cool.
  10. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    That's the idea I was getting at, although maybe expressed more clearly. Look at what other people have done and try to understand the choices they have made. Something different for the sake of being different will probably not result in a good instrument.

    BTW, I like the body design in your avatar pic, JP.

  11. I can design such a shape for you. To start, you'll have to give me quick sketch. From that I'll estimate the amount of time for the first draft at $25/hour. That will get you the first one. You are welcome to make changes to the design that will be incorporated into the drawing at the rate of $25/hour. I would estimate the entire process shouldn't take more than 8 hours or so.

    Remember, the design must incorporate the neck pocket, pickup routs, bridge and electronics placement and the other details to be ready for production. The final drawing will be in a format that can be used by the builder to either run to CNC machinery or print a full scale drawing.

    I don't expect you to take me up on my offer. But my post should point out that what you are asking for is beyond what most are going to give you for FREE! Face it - a well designed body is worth a certain amount to be done right - wouldn't you agree? And if you agree, you should get off of your lazy butt (or your wallet) and pay for what you get. I hope you don't ask the builder to put as much free work into your bass as you've done here asking for a design.
  12. It's more to get some ideas that I made this tread.
    Inspiration and suggestions, the details are for my builder ofcourse.

    My bassbuilder ofcourse will not work upon a drawing someone else made, he'll have to compromise.

    I myself know nothing about basses, I just play them. And I suck at designing something.

    That's why I ask for bodyshapes on this forum to reach bassists and builders, who will know more about this subject then I, to be kind enough to think of some designs.
    Some sketches and stuff would be nice to direct me.

    I just need much input from enthousiast.

    Or give me some links too see pics of basses on the net ;). Cause I think it's a serious subject when you get one custom build, I don't wanna go overnight with it.
  13. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    Doryan - what would be an example of something you like? What would be an example of something you want to avoid? :confused:

    Give us some examples to go on and I'm sure you'll start to turn up some comparative ideas of what others like and why they are attracted to or put off by particular things.

  14. I like assymetric: for example like a Warwick Dolphin.

    Also out-of-rectangular things like my Fender Jazz Bass looks cool. But I don't like the roundness of the edges.

    The underside must not be round, more like BC Rich's or V models.

    I dislike thick cutaway's, like more the pointy-ones on Ibanez RG guitars.

    To get the overall idea: something that could fit in a line-up between flying v's, lightningmodels, pointy strats and razoredged BC Riches.
    But somthing original.

    It's the silhouette that I want to be create, don't worry about the bumps and valley's in the design :).
    The 3D is for my builder.
  15. nikofthehill


    Jul 30, 2001
    san jose, CA
    try this:

    get out a blank piece of paper and a pencil. close your eyes and visualize a body shape in your head. now without opening your eyes, try to draw it. then smooth out the lines. the result should be one very unique looking bass design.
  16. Suburban


    Jan 15, 2001
    lower mid Sweden
    You've got it all there, Doryan! Dolphin, BC, and Iba.
    Copy those profiles, all in the same scale, and on see-thru paper (overheadfilm, perhaps).
    Put them on eachother, and top off with a blank sheet. Then copy the outlines you want!
    From that last copy, you modify until satisfied. The result has all the features you like from others, sligthtly modified, and all very personalized.
    Mission accomplished - by yourself , which is worth a bundle in missions like this!

    Go for it!:cool:
  17. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    That's the ticket. One thing to watch out for is if your source images are different sizes. If you've got suitable software on the computer, try resizing so that the distance between the nut and bridge is the same - this will then ensure the bodies are in proportion to each other.

    Doryan mentioned the possibility of a headless bass - just removing the headstock and putting a cutaway at the bottom of the body to access the tuning hardware on the bridge will make a big difference to the overall shape.

    Also, consider the mounting of the strap buttons - one feature I like on my two headless basses is having a button on either side of the gap at the bottom of the body - this means the bass is very easy to stand safely on the ground even if I don't have a guitar stand at hand.

    Another thought, based on the impression that Doryan would prefer an instrument that is more pointy than curvy, is to make sure the pointiness doesn't make it too uncomfortable to wear!

    For the record, I love the shape of my Sei Flamboyant. I think they are a wonderful design and I'm very happy to have the one below in my stable:


    For more information, try The Gallery (although the URL wasn't working when I tried it this morning).

  18. Damn, I tried what you guy's said, but I can't create something myself. :(
    I had some ideas in mind, cause I once saw a cool bass or two, and I have a vague idea of what would look good on me.

    But I can't give shape to that blurry vision.
    When it comes along what I like, I recognize it that moment. But start from scratch, I failed at that.
  19. check this out. im doing a bass for my major project in computer graphics. this is the body so far. u can use it if u want
  20. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Part of the body is missing.