#1
Two weeks ago I purchased my first 5-string. I went to a local music store to talk to my friend's dad, who owns the place, about buying one and I walked out with a Squier Affinity Jazz Bass V(The Arctic White color). I know that Squiers are not exactly top quality, but I didn't want to spend a lot on my first 5-string, plus got a good deal on it and I knew that I could always trade it back in and upgrade to a Fender Standard or Music Man bass if I wanted to.

But, something unexpected happened. I ended up really liking it. I mean, I really like it. So much, that I've decided not to trade it back in. Instead, I want to enhance it and spice it up a bit.

First off, I want new pickups. I really know nothing about replacing pickups, but I know i want passive, and they obviously have to be the same size as what's on there already. So I need some suggestions on that.

Second, I want to get rid of the ugly Squier logo on the headstock. I know it sounds really superficial and shallow, but I can't stand the thought of being onstage setting up for a gig and hearing "Wow, a Squier?" from the crowd. A friend of mine told me he sanded the headstock of his Squier Strat to remove it. Is there anything bad about that? It doesn't sound like it would harm anything, but I just want to make sure.

Third, to enhance the looks, I'm thinking all gold hardware. Pickguard, Tuning Pegs, Knobs, and Bridge. However, all of that is a bit pricy. I think I could go used for the tuning pegs; I've seen sets of 5 on ebay for the same price as one new one from Hipshot. Is there any other good brands that are cheaper?

So, in short, I really need some suggestions


TL;DR -- I have three questions:
1) Suggest me some new pickups
2) Is it okay to sand the headstock to get rid of the Squier logo?
3) Suggest me some brands/websites for the gold hardware that I want to install

Any and all feedback is appreciated, thanks!
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#2
Can I just say that nobody will care what's written on the headstock, i've seen "pros" use Squiers now and then, and a couple of random bands with a Squier or two making an appearance, nobody'll really care. It's more about the sounds you're playing, not what it says on the headstock. :]

Though if you're dead set on removing the logo, yeah, some fine sandpaper should take it off, and probably a small amount of the finish too though, so when the light shines on it you'll see a dull patch where you sanded it. Not really worth it IMO, taking the logo off isn't going to make it look any more expensive :p

Oh, and be careful about buying parts made for Fender basses, Squiers aren't 100% the same. For example, my brother tried fitting a Fender pickguard to his Squier, half the screws had to go in at a funny angle and one of them wouldn't fit at all, needed a new hole drilled.
You shouldn't have a problem with the new knobs though.
Last edited by pete-c at Jan 7, 2010,
#3
About 700 grit sandpaper should do you fine.
As for the pickup, before you are set on any decisions, take off the pickguard and see what kind of routing you have for the pickup (how large the cavity is). You might be able to use a different sized/shaped pickup, as long as you get a new pickguard for it. I wish I knew about basses enough to suggest pickups.
Good websites for hardware: allparts.com, stewmac.com, guitarfetish.com. Be warned about guitarfetish though. It is a lot cheaper than the the name brands, but the quality is sometimes lacking (probably a little better than Squier though).
Post pics!
Bari Build

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#4
Thanks guys. I know it shouldn't matter if it has the logo, I feel guilty that I'm actually superficial enough to care about that. I'll keep thinking about it.

I didn't know that i would be able to put different sized pickups on it, I'll definitely keep that in mind. I think I'll take a trip to the music store tomorrow, tell the owner about my plans, and open it up and take a look inside with him.

Still wondering about what kinds of pickups, anyone with more knowledge then me(which is just about zero, really) have suggestions?
Thanks again.

Edit: I just looked at your Strat mod, SalsaWords. Looks amazing, you did a real good job with that.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
Last edited by MPica at Jan 7, 2010,
#5
You can sand the headstock logo off, but it will be scuffed. What I did on my guitar, and not because I cared that it said Denstone on it, but because I wanted to customize it a bit and make it match my guitar was I sanded it, wiped on some black spray paint into the grain, then sanded back and sprayed it blue so it had the same kind of woodgrain as my translucent blue finish on my guitar. I got some press-on letters from the dollar store and put my own logo on there.


Here it is unfinished



Finished



The whole thing together.


As for pickups, it depends on what you want to spend. Some of the cheaper pickup places likes Dragonfire and Guitarfetish don't sell 5 string pickups, so you're probably going to have to spend a bit more. Its also going to depend on what type of music you want to play with it too.
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#6
I know it will be a little scratched up, but I can get some wood stainer/finish and touch it up. I like what you did with yours, keeping the natural grain.
I'm willing to spend more on the pickups, I think the tone is the most important part.

Also, I'm really GASing over this. Too bad that costs twice as much as I paid for the bass itself
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#7
check out bass parts resource its where im getting all my stuff or even stew mac
and about the decall if you dont like it its your instrument so ****in slap a fender decal on it if you want just remember you cant sell it after wards as a fender, eventhough i doubt you would.
as for pickups my friend has some seymour duncans, not sure which, but they sound awesome in his MIA fender V.
on the pick guard note i personally know the problems with buying a pickguard and having the holes not match up, i ended up drilling holes into the pickguard to match the holes in the bass (pics if needed)
but really man go all out on it, its your bass so i suggest buying the stuff you want rather than settling on less quality stuff because its cheeper. and even though it may be harder or take longer to get it will most definately be worth it in the end
hope this turns out sick
Telecaster bass :
FINALLY PLAYABLE!
[x]body
[x]neck
[x]humbucker
[x]jazz pup
[x]split p pups
[x]hardware
[x]bridge
[x]pickguard
[ ]finish/paint
[x]wiring/electronics
#8
Thanks, I do intend to go all out with it, no worries there
And about what you said about putting a Fender decal on it, I would never claim it to be anything other than what it really is if someone asked or if I was ever to sell it. I guess I just have it in my head that everyone is so anti-Squier

Edit: I looked into Seymour Duncan's, these are two that caught my eye:
Five String Stack
Quarter Pound

Both look like they're within my budget. Pretty sure they would fit. Ideas?
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
Last edited by MPica at Jan 7, 2010,
#9
Both those pickups will fit.

The only hardware change i would make is to the bridge and upgrade it to a gotah 201 high mass one. The tuners on squiers are fine.
Whats your budget on pickups?
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Ev 606L
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#10
I don't know why everyone puts down Squiers. I'm looking for a Squier myself at the moment for modifying purposes.

With a pickup and bridge upgrade you'll have turned a good instrument into a great one.

I'd probably go for the higher output pickup, but maybe you want a smoother sound. It's up to you.
#11
Dude, Squier's have the second greatest necks of all time.
The first of course being my washburn MG-70.

But seriously, play that funky squier proud, leave the logo!
They actually make good guitars if you don't get the earlier ones with plywood bodies like I have..

As for pickups, Check out nuthinbuttrul8 (He's a regular here), and he makes custom wound pickups custom shapes and all.

REALLY reasonably priced as well, for a set of Guitar Humbuckers is 75$ I think.
HOWEVER!! I'm not sure if he does Bass pups, you'd have to ask.


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#12
Alright, I've decided to keep the Squier logo.
I know the tuners are good, but I want all gold hardware. I think it will look sick. I don't know what my budget is really, I'm trying not to put a dollar price on it, lest I get disappointed if it's a lot more lol. I'm willing to pay as much as I have to to make it amazing.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#13
i text my friend today he sayd they were the 5 string stack pups
and for the tuners i recommend hipshot lites
they should fit the small tuning peg hole
Telecaster bass :
FINALLY PLAYABLE!
[x]body
[x]neck
[x]humbucker
[x]jazz pup
[x]split p pups
[x]hardware
[x]bridge
[x]pickguard
[ ]finish/paint
[x]wiring/electronics
#14
Awesome. I was leaning towards the Stack's, and Hipshot Lite's look awesome. Kind of expensive just for tuners though, considering I have to buy 5. I might go used on those, or something similar?

Thanks again for all the advice guys, you've really been a big help.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#15
wilkinson, gotoh, grover are some good brands
and alotta people are quarter pounder fanboys but i like the stack way better
did you ever find a pick guard?
Telecaster bass :
FINALLY PLAYABLE!
[x]body
[x]neck
[x]humbucker
[x]jazz pup
[x]split p pups
[x]hardware
[x]bridge
[x]pickguard
[ ]finish/paint
[x]wiring/electronics
#16
Quote by MPica
I know it will be a little scratched up, but I can get some wood stainer/finish and touch it up. I like what you did with yours, keeping the natural grain.
I'm willing to spend more on the pickups, I think the tone is the most important part.

Also, I'm really GASing over this. Too bad that costs twice as much as I paid for the bass itself


I dont really see the point of a trem on a bass guitar, it already plays low enough.

And its good to see your keeping the Squier logo, means you have balls, like the rest of us Squier owners. I use my Squier on stage, and I use a Valveking on stage, and I always get complements on my tone, and my guitar, despite it being a Squier.
#17
Quote by ethan_hanus
I always get complements on my tone, and my guitar, despite it being a Squier.



oddly enough i only get complements on my bass when i use my squier
whenever i use my fender nobody complememnts the bass
Telecaster bass :
FINALLY PLAYABLE!
[x]body
[x]neck
[x]humbucker
[x]jazz pup
[x]split p pups
[x]hardware
[x]bridge
[x]pickguard
[ ]finish/paint
[x]wiring/electronics
#18
Quote by killcram187
oddly enough i only get complements on my bass when i use my squier
whenever i use my fender nobody complememnts the bass


Nice lol.
I found a few pickguards online, I just don't know if they'll fit. Even if they don't though, nothing that drilling a few new holes won't fix.

@Ethan: Trem arm wouldn't have much of a use, you're right about that. I think it would still be awesome though.


I just got back from the music store, told him about everything, and started to work stuff out. Turns out he just recently spoke to a representative from Seymour Duncan about stocking some stuff from them, so when he calls back next week to confirm the deal, he's going to order me a pair of 5 stacks

I also need a new fuzz/overdrive/distortion, so I'm going to pick up a EHX Bass Big Muff also. So, pickups and new pedal now, gold hardware is going to have to wait a little bit. It'll definitely be worth it though.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#19
dude hell yeah sounds sexy!!!
post pics
Telecaster bass :
FINALLY PLAYABLE!
[x]body
[x]neck
[x]humbucker
[x]jazz pup
[x]split p pups
[x]hardware
[x]bridge
[x]pickguard
[ ]finish/paint
[x]wiring/electronics
#20

I'll definitely get some pictures up as soon as possible.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49
#21
You have GOT to do all gold hardware with that white finish, it will look amazing.
Make sure you use gold screws.
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#22
Oh wow. I didn't even think about gold screws. Can't believe I overlooked that lol. Thanks.
Gear:
Palmer 4-String Electric
Palmer 4-String Acoustic
Orange Terror Bass 500 head
Orange OBC115 cab
M-Audio KeyRig 49