Converting a 4 string bass to a 5 string


PDA

View Full Version : Converting a 4 string bass to a 5 string


Diminishedfaith
08-26-2010, 10:45 PM
Would it be possible to convert a 4 string bass p bass style over to a 5 string by just swapping the bridge, throwning a 5 string pickup in, replace the nut(gonna make my own nut anyways) , and adding a machine head?

U figure I will fill in the current pickup hole and re route it for an emg or something. Also figure I will have to add one of those metal things that holds the string above the nut to direct it to the new machine head withouthaving it pop out of the nut.

Also need a recommendation on a bridge that has the string spacing close enough to fit on a 4 string neck.

I don't mind the strings being close together so the main thing in asking is does a bridge exist that will fit 5 bass strings on a smaller neck?

Tone Deaf
08-26-2010, 10:49 PM
I want to say that this was actually a common mod, way back when before they made alot of 5-strings... Or maybe it was a J-bass mod... Hmmm..

pwrmax
08-26-2010, 10:56 PM
I do believe there's 5 string P-bass bridges out there.

shinhoman
08-26-2010, 10:57 PM
possible, yes; but it isn't a good idea...

x

Diminishedfaith
08-26-2010, 11:08 PM
Could you elaborate on why it isn't a good idea?

Other than the cramped fretboard that I've already stated I don't mind?

The only crucial thing I could think of is if 5 stings would be too much tension on a skinny neck with a single Truss rod?

haceteunosmates
08-27-2010, 07:00 AM
Could you elaborate on why it isn't a good idea?

Other than the cramped fretboard that I've already stated I don't mind?

The only crucial thing I could think of is if 5 stings would be too much tension on a skinny neck with a single Truss rod?

I guess that's your main concern. You are adding an extra string. Not even tunning down/up. May be too much.

skater dan0
08-27-2010, 07:32 AM
possible, yes; but it isn't a good idea...

x

I disagree. As long as you have a substantial enough neck, like a p bass neck for example, you can do it. I did it to my jazz bass and I couldn't be happier with the outcome.

http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showpost.php?p=24857353&postcount=2119

I used a Wilkinson 4+1 conversion bridge and a graphtech black tusq nut blank. I filed the blank for the strings and the bridge was a drop in replacement. I drilled a new 18mm hole in the treble side of the headstock for the G tuner and strung it up. I replaced the string tree with a string retainer bar and I've had no issues. The pickups in it have a single bar pole piece instead of individuals but a normal 4 string pickup with pole will work just fine and you won't really tell the difference between that and a five string pickup

salgala2000
08-27-2010, 04:29 PM
My stock 5 string came with 4 string pickups :shrug: .. And the neck is pretty small too. And it only has one truss rod. I don't see why it wouldn't work


EDIT: Yes I know normal guitar/basses only have one truss rod but TS asked if it was too much pressure for one so that's what i ment.

Diminishedfaith
08-27-2010, 06:43 PM
thanks guys, i think i'm gonna keep it 4 string with my current mod going on, but may try and get ahold of a cheap jazz bass to turn into a 5 string, or maybe even just buy a 5 string, lol, just wanted to be able to say i done it really, so we'll see, broke at the moment so this would be a while anyways.

deftonesordie
08-27-2010, 08:18 PM
there's a guy on youtube that has done this with his Jazz bass, I'm sure it'd be near the top with a quick search. regardless, possible? yes. your scale length will be a little short, but if you don't mind a handful of fat strings then you're set. I don't think you'll have a problem with the 4 string pickup on 5 strings.... can't remember what the guy on youtube did either.

eddiehimself
08-28-2010, 06:00 AM
there's a guy on youtube that has done this with his Jazz bass, I'm sure it'd be near the top with a quick search. regardless, possible? yes. your scale length will be a little short, but if you don't mind a handful of fat strings then you're set. I don't think you'll have a problem with the 4 string pickup on 5 strings.... can't remember what the guy on youtube did either.

No it won't.