Page 1 of 2
#1
Ok, if I had posted this in the guitar building forum they would have simply said "ask the bass forum" so I'm going to skip all that and post it here first.


I finally got my deal with Rob Wave guitars worked out and I'm getting a completely custom bass for a ridiculous price. I'm asking for input on it, what woods, maybe pickup placement, various stuff like that. If anyone has any ideas for a body style and would be so kind as to draw them up that would be greatly appreciated. Remember guys, price is important. I'm getting this cheap, but if I start adding on 24k gold tuners with inlaid diamonds (Bassilo) then it'll get out of hand. As far as body shape, I was thinking Carl Thompson-esque scroll bass....any body got an idea or drawing that I might like?


P.S.-When this is done and posted on the Rob Wave site I'll be sure to have him post credits to anyone who helped in the designing of it.
#2
i like that carl thompson design basis. i love it when basses have a long top horn and small bottom one, and i think it makes them easier to play. id deffinately not go precision pickups, too limited. id say humbuckers or bartolini soapbar pups. deffinately 2 pickups though, and a pan knowb or switch. id also get a mids cut switch, they are pretty nifty.

as far as woods, id get a wenge neck, maybe combine it with purplehart or bubinga. deffinately swamp ash body.

btw, bumper, you suck! but really, congradulations on your deal.
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
Last edited by crazypeanutman at Jun 23, 2006,
#4
^Only when Bumper is excited about a new bass!


I think I'm going with at least one humbucker. Remember guys, this is going to be a five string tenor (EADGC) and I know that I want an ebony fretboard. Other than that, give me as many ideas as possible. Rob and I need inspiration.
#5
Quote by Bumper
^Only when Bumper is excited about a new bass!


I think I'm going with at least one humbucker. Remember guys, this is going to be a five string tenor (EADGC) and I know that I want an ebony fretboard. Other than that, give me as many ideas as possible. Rob and I need inspiration.


well, it matters a lot in what context your gonna use it. are you planning on slapping it, tapping it, pick style, fingerstyle, those should all effect the way you build this. the more styles you plan to use it for, the more versatile it need to be.
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
#6
^I'm going to frequently use all of those techniques except for picking. Do you know where I can get a cheap (cheeeeap) active pre-amp?
#7
sliding pickup
Quote by slayaplaya

(oh! maybe some one will sig that witty comment! maybe not...)
#8
I wouldn't want a Thompson shape. It's fukkin ugly.

-Shape. Something classic and sexy.

-Woods don't get too exotic here, ususally, the difference is barely noticeable (soundwise, particularly if it's active). I'd recommend the OLD SCHOOL woods: mahogany, walnut, swamp ash, or the modern ones of warwick type.

-Neck. You gotta have it reinforced. Oterwise, the risk of warpage is huge... This will also allow for thinner, profiled necks. I'd recommend sturdy woods. Once again, look at Warwicks' specs. Or go with maple...

-Electronics - for you to decide. I'd get Barts... 3 band EQ, so it wouldn't be a total pain in the ass, and either 2 soapbars, or two J style pups.

- Bridge - if they can make you the monorail - fine. If not, look at those funky ass Gotoh and Schaller models, with string-thru configs.

It's gotta be a bolt-on

It's gotta have jumbo frets. Too bad you can't get Belorussian Syntom frets. These are made of surgical steel, and are really sought after... Or can you? Look around. This stuff is eternal, and looks awesome.

- Hardware - go with gotoh. No point in overpaying for that "SUPERLIGHWEIGHT" crap.

- Get a bolt-on, 6 bolts, make sure to have good access when you plan out the body to the upper frets.

yup!
#9
^I'm kinda stuck on a scroll shape. I might go with like a Jazz bass body, only thinner with a top horn scroll though. I thought about neck through, but I like the six bolt neck joint idea much better. What do you guys think of maple neck, ebony fretboard, mahogony body? Also, Rob loves to chamber out his basses. Any input on semi-hollowbody chambered basses? Also Bassilo, I was thinking of putting smaller frets on there. Banjo fretes to be exact. What are the pro's of Jumbos vs a smaller, steeper fret? As far as the sliding pickup idea....I don't think so. I want two soapbars with a ramp between them. I'm pretty set on that.

Thanks for everything so far!
#10
Quote by Bumper
^I'm kinda stuck on a scroll shape. I might go with like a Jazz bass body, only thinner with a top horn scroll though. I thought about neck through, but I like the six bolt neck joint idea much better. What do you guys think of maple neck, ebony fretboard, mahogony body? Also, Rob loves to chamber out his basses. Any input on semi-hollowbody chambered basses? Also Bassilo, I was thinking of putting smaller frets on there. Banjo fretes to be exact. What are the pro's of Jumbos vs a smaller, steeper fret? As far as the sliding pickup idea....I don't think so. I want two soapbars with a ramp between them. I'm pretty set on that.

Thanks for everything so far!


im tellin ya, bartolini's are the way to go for soapbars. im with ya on the small fretts too. not sure about the chambered bass, that would look pretty funky with a scroll, and not neccessarily good funky. i dont think id use a maple neck if i had that kind of freedom, but i like your other choices. mahogany should be nice
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
#11
^You know what? I'm sick of hearing about Barts all the time and not owning a bass with some in there. Alright, this bass is getting Bart soapbars. I'm leaning against a chambered body, but Rob always wants to do them. It's kinda his thing. What would you reccomend for the neck?


If anyone wants to see Robs work check it out at www.robwave.com

(it only works on IE!)
#12
Quote by Bumper
^You know what? I'm sick of hearing about Barts all the time and not owning a bass with some in there. Alright, this bass is getting Bart soapbars. I'm leaning against a chambered body, but Rob always wants to do them. It's kinda his thing. What would you reccomend for the neck?


If anyone wants to see Robs work check it out at www.robwave.com

(it only works on IE!)

oooh, i like that one called midnight element, that is rather awesome. be really awesome and go with a zebra wood neck. then you can say, yea, i have a zebra wood neck.

if not, id get a multi-laminant kao-bubinga or wenge-bubinga. maybe even mohogany-bubinga?
Quote by Mr. T
"Mr. T defines love as the reluctance to murder. If you're still alive, it's because Mr. T loves you."
#14
Delirium, I've seen doubles made. It's pretty useless.

Bump, i dunno how much luthiers cost over there. But I wouldn't wanna go with anything extraordinary. After this summer, imma order a Fender copy. Why? Costs 500$, outstanding quality, you know how each step was done, choose electronics, etc...

Thin frets. I'm no fan of thin frets, i dunno, what a banjo fret is, but I assume, it's like mandolin fret. THis means, it's narrow at the base, sharp at the top. Your strings will groove it up pretty quickly. Note, that the reason I recommended jumbos is because they're the longest lasting, and wouldn't pain you with the annying buzz.

Hollowing. Our luthiers are not fond of this. The top reason for their doing it is to reduce the weight, some clients like their basses ligher... It changes the tone a tad, dunno to waht extent, depends on the wood, and on the amount of wood taken out this way. I wouldn't chamber it. If it was a guitar - maybe yes. But bass - no...

Maple is great neck material. combined with ebony - great looking, too. It's the kind of wood i'd call "neutral". It doesn't add anything, nor does it take something away. And this is great. I'd want my bass to be 100% "neutral" to make it easier to record, adjust, whatever. I strongly recommend to enforce it with graphite. Not expensive. Yet, it will be a certain guarantee that your neck won't turn into a rollercoaster track. Also, there are different trusses. Make sure to get THE BEST. These kinds of components are usually neglected by buyers, who are after fancy woods, shiny finishes, etc. But it's crucial when one is building a bass to last. Maybe 2 truss system... though more complicated to adjust. Still, 1 truss + graphite seems better.

Cheerios!
#16
Bassilo, I'm trying not to go over the top on this, but I signed on with Rob Wave as a sponsored artist. This bass should cost no more than about $700. Banjo frets are a little steeper than mandolin frets, but I guess you're right about the jumbos lasting longer. I'll probably go with those. I really appreciate your, and everyone elses input. Even if I don't like or don't use your ideas, still, thanks alot for suggesting anything.


EDIT: How much do you think a graphite truss rod, or graphite neck would cost? I definently want this bass to be able to withstand some work, as it will be my main gigging and recording bass.
Last edited by Bumper at Jun 23, 2006,
#18
It's not a graphite neck per se. Instead of routing one canal for the trusss, they rout out three: middle for truss, and two for graphite rods. Lemme give you a link, if i find it...

http://www.warmoth.com/bass/necks/necks.cfm?fuseaction=truss_rods

scroll down, see the two metal "stiffening rods"? Some use metal. It's much heavier. Others use graphite. THere are gimmicks about either material altering the tone, i think it's bullocks... Consult the luthier on this though. It's not expensive at all.
#19
Alright, I'll talk to Rob when I go to his shop tomorrow. I thought you meant an actual carbon fiber truss rod, I've heard of the stiffening rod thing. I'm pretty sure Modulus does that too. I would definently want something like that on my bass. I'm shooting for Barts as far as pickups are concerned, but does anyone know of any other active pickups that sound pretty tightly compressed?
#21
^No, i'm not looking for a compressor. I want active pickups that sound well compressed. Active pickups generally sound more compressed than passive ones, but I want a set that really evens out the volume well on my high strings. It's really hard to get those high strings to cut through in a metal band.
#22
What do you mean by being a sponsored artist?...You got some kind of endorsment?...I'm not trying to be nosey, but I'd like to know...and are you getting this bass made at like a discount price?

Anyways, if you want a decent sketch or something to play around with on photoshop I've got the sketch for my custom bass in my PM box if you'd like to photoshop it or let your luthier modify it...I'd say it looks like a Schecter Stilleto mixed with a Carl Thompson bass...I wouldnt want you to use the same exact design though...Let me know if you want to use it...

And mahogany-maple-ebony is the same wood configuration I'm using...Except I'm getting a tonal strip of bubinga down the middle...You can do that too if you want, you know like those alembics you've seen with like 7 stripes down the middle of purpleheart, padouk, korina, ebony, wenge, etc...But I'm just getting one strip...And I might get a wenge neck instead of maple if I can....I'd recommend walnut for a body wood if you have the money for it, its a bit more expensive than mahogany though...I played my frends Warmoth J Bass (which was made of walnut) and it sounded awesome, passive electronics and nothing fancy on it just the tone of the wood really showing through...Good wood that is...

And I think most Barts are passive its just the preamps that are active, most Bartolini preamps are designed to work with passive p/u's...I plan on installing the one with a push-pull/active-passive Vol knob /Blend/Low/Mid/High/3-way switch...The switch is for the mid-range knob, it pretty much switches the frequencies so the knob can adjust either the low mid, mid, or high mid frequencies...Look on this site for Bartolini pickups and preamps...
http://www.bestbassgear.com/bartolini-preamp.htm

I'm going for 2 Bartolini humbuckers (on my bass) even though humbuckers are the same as soapbars...I dunno I guess 2 fat humbuckers would look more badass...lol...Sorta like a Corvette Double Buck...I'm thinking pickups like these
http://www.bestbassgear.com/bartolini-mv5cbc-pickups.htm

Or the awesome Nordstrand pickups they have on that site...
"All matter is merely energy condensed into a slow vibration and we're all one consciousness experiencing ourselves subjectively, theres no such thing as death, life is just a dream and we're the imagination of ourselves."
Last edited by XeNoCiDe730 at Jun 23, 2006,
#23
Yeah, since I've gotten into my new band (in my sig) I've landed two endorsements. One with Curt Mangan Strings, and one with Rob Wave Guitars. I get a guitar from Rob at a discounted price (between $6-800) and free strings from him. I'd definently like to see you're bass design (I won't steal it, I'm sure it would help in some inspiration though.) I completely forgot about Nordstrand! I might get a set of those on there. And yes, I definently want active pickups and an active equalizer.
#24
Quote by Deliriumbassist
I haven't checked his site... but, for the electronics, what could be useful is a dual output. One for each pickup (assuming you have 2). This'll mean you need two amps, but you get a lot more tonal control over what you want from each pickup.

Or put in a stereo output jack and use a volume pedal to pan between them into one amp.


Yes please - reminds me of a Teisco headstock and would look great with 3+2 tuners.

Anyway, I'd go for something chambered and looking like an old Ampeg or the Italia Imola bass - like this with a Teisco style headstock, a bridge humbucker and a P or J style neck pickup.
#25
Thats pretty awesome that you're getting companies to sponsor you...

Alright well I'll send you a PM with the sketch right now...

And yes an active EQ with an active/passive switch I think is a must...For me at least...For different tones for recording and playing live and in case I ever suffer the misfortune of having my battery die on me while playing live (its happened before)...
"All matter is merely energy condensed into a slow vibration and we're all one consciousness experiencing ourselves subjectively, theres no such thing as death, life is just a dream and we're the imagination of ourselves."
Last edited by XeNoCiDe730 at Jun 23, 2006,
#26
^^Actually, I'm working out my own headstock design with Rob (thats what I'm going up there for tomorrow, mostly). It's going to be ridiculously large, like on a Fodera Monarch, or a Carl Thompson. I just like the way that looks.

Thanks for the sketch, Xeno!
#27
if your doing 5, you basically need a humbucker. Sad to say, but Humbuckers are the best at going THAT low.

If you want to really get that nasty low sound, I'd add a 2nd bucker; if you wanted to be able to lighten it up a bit, I'd add a J.


Woods? go for something heavy. The heavier the better IMO. Zebrawood is a favorite. Stay away from cheap maple or basswood - the expensive ones can be good, but honestly, blah.


Kentucky probably doesnt have winters like they do here, so I wouldn't care for a carbon fiber neck or not. idk.


Get an aguilar pre-amp though.
Quote by casualty01
the RIAA can't shut us down, interpol can't shut us down. the U.S. gov't can't shut us down and CERTAINLY not YOU can shut us down.


BA in Music theory
MusicMan Bongo, SUB -> Orange Terror 1000 stack

Quote by waterproofpie
it's a UtBDan sandwich. Awwww yeah!
#28
good goin' getting a custom bass, Bump!

scrolled horns look fantastic, IMO. maple is great. I wouldn't go with semi-holo, it'll break easier.bartolini pickups seem good.and you should have easy access to the high frets, you may need it.
#29
Quote by Bumper
^^Actually, I'm working out my own headstock design with Rob (thats what I'm going up there for tomorrow, mostly). It's going to be ridiculously large, like on a Fodera Monarch, or a Carl Thompson. I just like the way that looks.

Thanks for the sketch, Xeno!

No problem, Bump.

I sent it just now so check your PMs.
"All matter is merely energy condensed into a slow vibration and we're all one consciousness experiencing ourselves subjectively, theres no such thing as death, life is just a dream and we're the imagination of ourselves."
Last edited by XeNoCiDe730 at Jun 24, 2006,
#30
-Dual truss rod
-Mahogony body (since you play metalcore,-by the way you music is sick, and gathered here today just might be one of my new favorite bands)
-Spalted Maple body/veneer (beautiful)
-Bubinga body
-Pickup selector, bass/treble cut boost, mid cut/boost controls
-Aguilar Preamp
-Ebony Fretboard
-Personally I think LED's in fret markers looks hot, especially at darker shows
-Hipshot D-Tuner
-Monorail bridge- like the ones Ibanez's have
-I'd go say Spilt P pickups but since it's a 5er I would go with some nasty active humbuckers, maybe dual MM style 'buckers.
-Straplocks (don't tell me you play metalcore and don't move on stage)
-Fender Deluxe Active P-bass (60th anniversary)
-Peavey T-40 (1982)
-Hartke HA-3500
-Aguilar GS 2x12
-GK Backline 2x10
#32
^^Thanks for that input man, I'll definently consider alot of those. As far as straplocks go, well they don't make em tough enough for me. I've frequently pulled my straplocks screw completely out before, and twice I actually pulled the straplock in half. What I do now I put a woodscrew through the top horn with a washer on top and under my strap. That has never let me down. Now, I could use some more information on tone woods, as I have a very basic knowledge of them (at best). What kind of body wood will help me get a ridiculously clean, almost piano-like tone? Also I'd like it to have lots of thump.


P.S. Thanks for the kind words about GHT.
Last edited by Bumper at Jun 24, 2006,
#33
ebony is used in pianos, and I have a piss poor knowledge of woods, so I wouldn't know about a thump sound.
#34
like many people on here, i would definately recomend a 5 piece wenge/bubinga/wenge/bubinga/wenge neck. its in my sr505, and with a mahogony body of the other end, it sounds fantastic.
i would rather staple my own hands to a train, than pray on knees that judge and blame.
#35
i think Koa could help you achieve a good clean and bright bass tone...Ebony is also a great wood and like tsurigi said; its used in pianos and is great for a bright and very clear tone...Maybe a strip of koa down the middle and 2 small strips of ebony on either side of that (keep in mind ebony is usually ridiculously expensive at lumber yards)...That would look pretty awesome and be a big contributing factor to the bass' tone...But putting strips down the middle of different woods would be smart anyways because you cant make a bass out of 1 piece of mahogany...Bass bodies are usually too large for that so luthiers form a body out of two peices of mahogany glued together....For deep thump some bubinga will definitely do the trick...Either for the neck or as a tonal strip...Thats the wood I chose to be the tonal center for my bass...

I cant really tell you which wood is "best" or whatever, I'm just telling you which ones to look out for...Maybe someone else will offer more info on tone woods because I'm far from an expert on the subject...

<EDIT> BTW Bump, I saw your bands myspace frend list...lol, WTF is the TonyDanzaTapDanceExtravaganza??
"All matter is merely energy condensed into a slow vibration and we're all one consciousness experiencing ourselves subjectively, theres no such thing as death, life is just a dream and we're the imagination of ourselves."
Last edited by XeNoCiDe730 at Jun 24, 2006,
#36
Quote by XeNoCiDe730


<EDIT> BTW Bump, I saw your bands myspace frend list...lol, WTF is the TonyDanzaTapDanceExtravaganza??


one of the coolest bands ever. The song cliff burton surprise is the greatest song ever written i think, listen to it.
i would rather staple my own hands to a train, than pray on knees that judge and blame.
#37
^ Dude, the Tony Danza Tap Dance Extravaganza is this awesome hardcore band from Alabama. They're probably one of the best bands I've ever had the pleasure of sharing a stage with. Either them, or From First to Last. They are awesome, you should check them out! I reccomend the song Cliff Burton Surprise. Also, did you get nay of the pms I sent? Every time I send one my computer freezes up and I have to reboot.
Last edited by Bumper at Jun 24, 2006,
#39
^Yeah, I was thinking about a picutre of Ronald Reagans face spanning from the 10th to the 14th frets.....But anything else thats crazy and/or ridiculous would duit it just fine.
#40
Find a way to listen to some Barts before you order them. Some people like em, alot of people hate them.

Seymour Duncan makes an active bass pickup also, the lightning rods. I've been hoping to hear some myself. Congrats on the sponsors!
Page 1 of 2