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Xaviere Club- Modders delight

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Rip Topaz, Dec 22, 2011.

  1. So many of us love modding cheaper basses, and when Guitar Fetish started selling Fender clones at the same price point as Rondo, we jumped at the chance to own a solid alder (yup, real wood!!) bass for next to nothing.

    I got mine a little over a week ago, and haven't stopped playing it since. These are truly diamonds in the rough, and I've already started modding mine.
    Who else wants in??? I'll give numbers as you join.

    Heres mine, solid alder P-style with natural finish, and already not looking like she did when she arrived.
    Aside from the headstock being reshaped to resemble a tele bass, I'm also swapping all the hardware (and pickguard) to black, and adding a mudbucker and dual outputs ala Sheehan. Then, in the Spring when the weather improves, I'll be breaking out the heat gun and stripping her and refinishing with butterscotch blonde nitro. Gonna paint it real thin, though. I want it to relic naturally, just quicker.


    We can use this thread to show the mods we do to our Xavieres, and help to spread the word about these great, affordable basses.
  2. Count me in RIP,
    I'll take #5 if ya would
    though I havent done any mods YET.
  3. Why 5? You got yours before me!!!

    So we have:

    Rip Topaz- 1(if those who got theirs speak up, I'll change my number)
    JHandley- 5 (need pix!!)

    If you don't want in on this thread, let me know and I'll remove ya. No drama here, just folks that are having fun with their Xavieres.
  4. Stev187

    Stev187 Peavey MegaBass Club!

    Jan 11, 2011
    Toledo, OH
    Happy to be a member--these are cool little basses. Here's a photo of my P and my J.


  5. those arent the best pictures, hopefully I'll have a dry sunny day tomorrow to get some proper pics.
  6. FYI, I just (out of curiosity) hit mine (in an inconspicuous spot on the back) with micromesh to see if I could dull the gloss a bit.

    Nothing!! After rubbing a small spot for a few minutes, all I was left with was a very tiny spot with a few very small scratches.

    This is some HARD stuff!! Guess it'll be the heat gun after all. I'm actually debating on just leaving the finish as is. It appears to be very strong. Guitar Fetish discribes it as a catalyzed urethane, which is basically plastic. Not my favorite finish by any stretch. I really want a butterscotch blonde, so I begin the planning. And ordering. Nitro finishes are expensive, so I will be ordering a can or two as I can afford them, and stashing them till I have all I need to do the refin.

    Now, should I go with Reranch blonde and add tinted clear, or just use their butterscotch blonde and clear?
  7. I dont know what the reranch blonde is but there are other basses out there with butterscotch. If I were going through all the work to refinish I'd definitely do it with something unique. but that just my 2 pennies worth.
  8. I'm really stuck on the blackguard look. My goal is a blonde blackguard (almost) tele bass that's gonna start to wear almost immediately.

    Before I bought this bass, I was looking very seriously at a Modern Player tele bass, but there were a few things about it I really didn't like. So I started looking for a bass that was lightweight, and wouldn't be very expensive (but still decent quality), that I could mod into what I want.

    I have ALL the necessary tools for fretwork, any possible woodwork, and finishing, so it's just a matter of buying the parts and the paint. I feel like I got really lucky with the Xaviere, because aside from the upper frets needing a little attention, there really nothing to complain about. The neck is straight and solid, the body is light (and NOT plywood), and for the most part, an awesome instrument for next to nothing. So I don't mind putting a few dollars into making it my own.

    This is gonna be fun!!
  9. I'm really looking forward to seeing what you do to this bass, Rip.
    Which black tuners and bridge are you looking at?
  10. SlingBass4


    Feb 28, 2009
    Kansas City
    Subscibed ;)

    From the reviews...I can't imagine much more than possibly new tuners, tusq nut, scratch plate, and varitone type guts IF required. A little fret work and adjustment is almost a given on most basses. Pizza Pie :smug:
  11. Well, I've looked at a lot of them, and would really like to use Hipshot, because lets face it, they're the best short of getting something custom machined, but it would also cost almost as much as the bass, so no.

    So I'll probably use the Guitar Fetish stuff, and keep it as close as possible to what's on there now, except black. I'd like a high mass bridge, but I don't like the GFS one, so probably their Fender-like one.

    The pickguard is going to be all black, not B/W/B. I'm gonna have to cut it myself, because of the humbucker and the extra controls.

    I can't wait to get started, but it's gonna have to wait till things calm down from the holidays.
  12. As for things that are REQUIRED mods, there are none, other than a little fretwork. At least none that I've found over the last week of doing pretty much nothing but playing it. Certainly nothing that warrants sending it back.

    The pickups are the GFS mid-grade ones. Not a bad pickup, but once I start modding and add the humbucker, I may need to swap it out for something that matches the 'bucker, maybe not.

    The bridge and tuners are decent quality. If I wasn't going specifically for a certain look, I wouldn't change them.

    I just hope I can get another 2 or 3 of these basses before everyone realizes how fun they are and the price goes up!!
  13. Actually, I'd say the Xaviere basses are in the Squier Affinity price range. Rondo's Ursa 1s ($109) are roughly 35% cheaper than the GFS offerings ($169 or $189), which is a substantial amount when you're talking cheap basses. A difference of $60 to $80 is enough for a new pickup and a set of strings.

    I have nothing against the Xaviere line, as I think there's always room for more inexpensive modding platforms. However, I think it's funny that folks will flock to something new (GFS alder bodied P bass clone) over something that's been around a bit (Squier alder bodied P bass clone), even though the prices are virtually identical.
  14. For myself the choice was clear as the cheapest Squire with a natural body and maple neck was the VM P, at $100 more.
    Not intending to modify it except for the black hardware.
    And I have just gotten back into playing bass after a lengthy hiatus so I am approaching it as I did back then, purchase something highly useful to achieve the sound I want without breaking the bank to do so.
    I'm very pleased with this offering from Xavier, to say the least.
  15. To me, it wasn't about the name on the headstock. The Precision shape and build specs are time-proven. Alder body, maple bolt on neck. P pickup in the sweet spot. Who cares who makes it if it's CNC cut and done properly.

    On a side note, in another thread we were discussing the P bass tone and where everyone keeps their tone knob while playing. I'm guilty of diming all my knobs and just slamming on my bass. After reading the discussion, I tried a few suggestions. I turned the tone knob all the way off, then brought it back just slightly and the tone was perfect!! This bass behaves just like any other P-bass, in that the thump is really there if you back off on the tone control and stay away from trying to get so much high end. Just a thought.

    Merry Christmas to everyone. I hope to hear of some Xavieres as gifts in the next few days.
  16. All stripped down and ready to route for the humbucker.


    Note the presence of rubbing compound in cavities. Lol. The cavities were a mess, no shielding anywhere, and a small piece of foam glued to the cavity under each pickup. The P pickups came out separate from their covers.

    I've got the pickguard marked for the new pickup. I'll cut that first, then put it in place, and mark the body for the route. It'll be mostly hidden under the guard so it doesn't have to be pretty. I'll do the best I can.

    Thanks to some friends on Facebook, I've got the wiring sorted. I should have it all done by next weekend.
  17. You guys better keep quiet about these basses before Fender makes them change the headstock.

  18. Well, that was kind of my point. You get the same thing in a new Squier Affinity P at very nearly the same price (actually, the Squier is less if you count the shipping)...but I guess the Xaviere is shiny and new, so it gets the attention. And they have maple 'boards available, something the Affinty series doesn't offer at this time.

    Again, nothing against the Xavieres. I think it's great that there's yet another inexpensive/ entry-level /modding platform bass in the $150-$200 range.

    It's only a matter of time, I'll bet.
  19. Well, in the meantime, I'm having a great time with this one!! Hopefully I can grab another before it's "too late".

    Here's a shot of the pickguard, marked for the new holes. It's not a great shot but if you look close you can see where the new output jack and pots will go.


    Pickguard is now cut for all the new controls, and ready to be transferred to the body for routing.

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