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Who makes basses with wide-spaced strings?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DanielleMuscato, Oct 24, 2006.

  1. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    Hey folks,

    I did a search about this, but haven't found anything really useful. Can you help?

    I'm trying to find companies that make wide-spaced basses. I know the MTD Kingston series has 19mm string spacing, and of course there are P basses. I play 5-strings, and I know Mike Lull makes a 5-string P... Does anybody else make a passive Precision-style 5-string with 19mm spacing?

    I have 2 Line6 Variax 705s with 19mm spacing. They sound great and are very comfortable, but they eat batteries and I want something passive, or at least something where I don't have to change the batteries every day (the six AA batteries in a Variax last 10 hours!)

    I like the "MTD 535" setting on the Variax especially, but I also like classic P bass tones. I also like rosewood fretboards.

    Maybe I should route out my Variaxes and put some passive pickups in there, haha.

    Anyway, thanks for your suggestions!

  2. Alvaro Martín Gómez A.

    Alvaro Martín Gómez A. TalkBass' resident Bongo + cowbell player

    The widest 5-string I know is the Carvin BB75. It's active, but the battery lasts really long and has an active/passive switch. Great bass.
  3. lug

    lug Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2005
    League City, Tx
    I have one and it has the most comfy 5 string neck I've tried. It's wide but flat and has an asymetrical cut to help even more. You can pick them up dirt cheap on Ebay as well.

  4. steve21

    steve21 Inactive

    Mr. Valenti makes 20 mm at the bridge basses (& 19 if you want). I don't know about emulating a 535 though.
  5. cpach


    Feb 28, 2006
    Santa Cruz, CA
    Ibanez BTB series are 19mm. The BTB1205 is a nice bass, although it might be a little dark to your tastes. Does an OK P impression, but my 1206 definitely can't do an MTD impression. Work checkint out, and cheaper than some of the other suggestions posted. There's also the 556, which doesn't have as high end features, but sounds brighter and more aggressive. The Bart preamp lasts for a good while.

    Also, I think Laklands are 19mm. Mmm, Lakland.
  6. Funky Doctor

    Funky Doctor

    Aug 28, 2003
    Old school yamaha TRB's have full beidge spacing regardless of the number of strings.
  7. all my basses are 19mm at the bridge.... the 5, 6 and 7 string.

    My 5 string 51P has been ordered by others passive, mine has a preamp
  8. Oliver


    Jun 21, 2003
    Perth, Australia
    Warwick Streamer Stage 1, very wide
  9. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Sadowsky P5. Has the perfect dimensions for me: 1-7/8" nut width, 19mm bridge spacing. The Sadowsky P5 is active, but comes with a preamp bypass switch and passive tone control, so it can be set to operate as a passive bass.

    If that's out of your price range, then I suggest the Benavente 51 model 5-string. It also has wide spacing. The one caveat is that the neck is a baseball bat. However I love baseball bat necks (see comment on Warwick just below). I have two of these basses: one active, one passive.

    The Lull P5 I owned years ago had slightly narrow bridge spacing: 18mm at the most. However the Lull P5 has been slightly redesigned with a thru-body B string, so other dimensions may have changed as well. The BP review noted that the P5 had a fatter neck than the Lull J-bass, but my old Lull P5 had a very slim neck profile.

    Valenti basses: Nino can build you a nice passive wide-spaced five-string P-bass. I've never played one but they get excellent reviews here, and the price is right.

    Finally: the Fender American Deluxe Precision 5 has wide spacing. I don't think there's a passive mode, but that could be added (or the preamp removed entirely).

    Yep... 20mm at the bridge, with a big fat neck. Wish I still had mine!
  10. Baryonyx

    Baryonyx Inactive

    Jul 11, 2005
    Marathon Man
    The first thin I though of was Warwick, specifically the Thumb model. You can get those in the "wide neck" option that will give you a fretboard like an aircraft carrier runway!
  11. TBalls


    Mar 18, 2005
    Zon Sonus 519.
  12. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio
    My Roscoe 6 has wide spacing...
  13. SurrenderMonkey


    Aug 18, 2006
    Warwick has Broadneck versions (Thumb Bold On BN, Streamer LX Broadneck). 20 mill at the bridge, apparently.
  14. Bass Below

    Bass Below

    Oct 24, 2006
    New York
    Only one I've ever played (albeit briefly) is the Carvin Bunny Brunell. I thought it was great as far as feel, spacing, action (I didn't plug it in so that's as far as I can go). The asymmetrical neck was nice, string spacing was wide enough to satisfy that want for a wider board but not so wide that it would take a week to get used to.
  15. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    Lots of great suggestions; thanks very much. It's much appreciated! I'll look into these.

    I'm really attracted to the look of Fender Precisions, so a Mike Lull, Valenti or Sadowsky might be in my future over something along the lines of a Warwick. I've had a Carvin guitar before and I liked it, but I've never tried one of their basses before. I'm looking for something around $1000, preferably less, but I'm willing to wait for the right bass if it ends up being more than that. I don't want to buy something cheap I'll want to replace later.

    I'm gonna poke around the Web now that I know what to look for, and check back in.

    ** edit: Forgot to mention, I'm looking for a bolt-on neck. Thanks **

  16. DanielleMuscato


    Jun 19, 2004
    Columbia, Missouri, USA
    Endorsing Artist, Schroeder Cabinets
    I checked out all the above mentioned builders' sites, and wow! Nino's basses look great! I didn't see a 5-string P on the Sadowsky site, but I emailed them to see if they do something like that. They do make a 4-string P in their Ultra-Vintage line.

    I'd love a Valenti or a Mike Lull... hmm... I'll have to give this some thought... I really like the playability and sound of my Variaxes, though. I'm considering putting a pickup or two in one of those, instead of getting a new bass.

    There's a great local luthier who owns a repair shop. I might see what he thinks about installing a pickup. I sense a thread in the pup thread coming on...

  17. +1
    The 5 and 6 string models of the thumb bass can both be wide neck optioned. They work well as a bass and an oar.
  18. I've got a Gretsch Electromatic with 19 mm spacing...passive and bolt on with a rosewood fretboard. They were discontinued when Fender stepped in in 2003, might be able to pick one up. around $400 IIRC, great bass, lasted me 4 years with no problems.
  19. My Alembic and Pedulla are both wide spaced 5 strings. They are both at 19mm I believe.

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