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Why don't they mass produce single-cuts?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by teacherguy, Feb 7, 2005.

  1. teacherguy


    Feb 21, 2004
    Cincinnati, OH
    Something I've been curious to hear some opinions about...

    Why do you think single-cuts have been mainly a boutique style of bass? Most players have had one made by a small luthier. Are they such a niche style that no company is going to spend money producing and marketing them?
    Here is the first SC I've seen by a mass producer:

    Any thoughts?

  2. Construction is generally more involved, meaning more money. There are alot of mass produced single cut guitars. But we have Les Paul to thank for that.

    I just don't think the demand is there.
  3. xyllion

    xyllion Commercial User

    Jan 14, 2003
    San Jose, CA, USA
    Owner, Looperlative Audio Products
    I would guess that it is because the single-cut style has not reached a level of mass appeal that makes it attractive for the big companies to retool for them. Remember that in general bass guitars are much lower volume than guitars. So, creating a new line of bass guitars is not very appealing unless they are going to capturing a huge market share. If they keep their body shapes the same, then they don't have to take a risk. Big companies don't like risks.
  4. r379


    Jul 28, 2004
    Dallas, Texas
    Yes, I think they are a niche product. It's a look that a lot of people don't care for (I'm one of them.) and manufacturers are selling what they make already. Why spend the money to bring out a new model when there is no guarantee it'll sell? If and when manufacturers feel the market will support single-cuts, they will be mass-produced.
  5. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    How about:

    G&L ASAT
    Hofner Club
    Gibson/Epiphone Les Paul
    Schecter Baron

    OK, not a lot but they are mass produced singlecuts.
  6. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I think he was referring to non Les Paul / Telecaster type singlecuts...
  7. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    Its probably the same reason that they don't, en masse, mass produce buckeye topped bases, flourecent pink basses (anymore), fads come and go, but P and J basses move units! :D
  8. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    Personally I don't see it as a fad.. Just not much demand for them.

    The pink basses you mentioned were part of an image back in the day that (thankfully) died out. Don't see enough singles out there in mainstream music to consider it a "fad"..

    IMO, of course...
  9. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    I agree, its not a "fad" in the traditional sense as it hasn't been taken up by the mainstream. Its more of a fashion trend here among the TB users (and among the boutique manufacturers who regualarly feature here). Three or four years ago, hardly anyone was talking about SC basses (other than the odd Fodera etc), but now they are fairly common features in posts here on TB.

    Im not sure how much TB represents the actual gear "desires" of the majority of the bass playing public, who seem to be, for the most part, happy playing P's and J's (and Ibanez etc).
  10. Yeah, I think we're a pretty unique group for the most part! :D
  11. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member

    Well, as of a couple of months ago PRS guitars had to stop producing their singlecut McCarty model because Gibson claimed ownership of the single-cutaway electric guitar design and a judge agreed.

    I'm not kidding. I hope that decision has been overturned because it's such a crock of poo. But I don't believe this has anything to do with the topic question. I think Bernie is correct: not enough demand for SC basses.
  12. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I really don't see it as a "fashion trend" either. They're perfectly practical instruments that some feel add to the basic function of the instrument (increased sustain, greater neck stability, etc.). You seem dead set on associating singlecut bass affinity/ownership with being shallow or some similar character fault. Why is that?

    Besides fashion trends can be thought of as fads also; parachute pants, bandanas, ripped up and stone/acid washed jeans, etc...
  13. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    :eyebrow: Perhaps you are being a little defensive. It seems to me that you are the one thats worried that owning one will be a character fault or shallowness, I never brought such a thing up. Latent regret perhaps? Do you even own an SC?

    SC basses are something that have had a recent surge in popularity. They offer functional benefits, at least anecdotally (has anyone done a study on this??). I merely stated that the reason they are not, en masse, mass produced is that they are, at the moment, a trend amoung those who like the "latest trend" in gear, but have not largely been accepted by the mainstream. There's nothing wrong with that, I myself want one. But, its not likely that large manufacturers are going to jump on baord unless these basses establish themselves as more than a "passing trend" and are desired by the greater gear buying public.

    Please don't try and project your own doubts and / or insecurities about these issues onto me ;)
  14. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I have a single cut 8 string being built right now.. Do you REALLY think "I" have a problem with them?? I play what I want to play and piss on what anyone else thinks..

    You may take that however you wish...

  15. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    If thats your attitude, it's strange that you would get so worked up over something I didn't say [​IMG]

  16. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    Who's worked up? I was just asking why you seemed to be insinuating (to repeat) that singlecut bass affinity/ownership was synonymous being shallow or some similar character fault.

    Maybe it was just your choice of words; "fad" and "fashion trend"..

    But if I've misread you here then my apologies..
  17. Marlat


    Sep 17, 2002
    London UK
    No worries....perhaps you can use this for pissing on me next time: [​IMG] :D
  18. mark beem

    mark beem Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    New Hope, Alabama
    I've always used that phrase figuratively but if "water sports" is your thing; all I have to say is more power to you!!
  19. Little G

    Little G

    Feb 27, 2003
    I think here in the UK the fact that there are not many luthiers to start with, most bass players here will go for an off the shelf bass rather than a custom made, which accounts for some of the reason why.

    The UK seems in the majority to be behind on the latest bass fashions or whatever you want to call it.

    I for one think they are a great looking shape and will grow steadily, as some folks have already said you wouldn't have heard much about them here until about a year or so ago.

    I'm getting my custom Shuker Single cut soon so hope to expand the SC following :D
  20. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Supporting Member


    I think what Mark was saying is that it remains to be seen whether or not SC basses will go the way of Steinberger pogo stick basses. That's valid enough. That's not a knock against either Steinbergers or SC's, it's simply an observation of consumer demand.