#1
Hey guys, I am working on a small cheap project called the stick bass.

My project is mainly going to be a one stringed bass with a piezo pickup. I already have most of the supplies except for one, which I will brief at the end of the post. The body is going to be made of a 3/4" by 3/4" by 36" block of what appears to be pine. I am going to sand it down until it is comfortable, apply a finish, and then hook it all together with the rest of the components. The bridge is going to be the ball end of the string going through a hole in the body, with a metal bar acting as a saddle. The nut is going to be the same thing as the bridge. I am going to be using a piezo as an output device.

I have a couple of questions though.

#1: (MOST IMPORTANT) Can I use just a standard buzzer as a piezo transducer, or do I need to order something with transducer labeled on it online?

#2: The body feels rather weak. I am hoping that a laquer finish will be able to harden it a little, so what do you guys suggest for a finish?

#3: How am I going to work out a head for the darn thing? I can't use a standard bass tuner, as the post would rise above the nut.

#4: I am going to paint the fretboard before I laquer coat it, any suggestions for design?

Do not worry, when I am done there WILL be pics.
-Instruments-
Squier frankenbass
LTD Deluxe EC-1000 in Vintage Black
1960's Banjuke
#2
1. Yes, but it'll be REALLY quiet. It'd be suggested to make or buy a preamp so it's audible without jacking up the volume on you're amp all the way.

2. Epoxy finish would make it really hard of course. Poly urethane would be a decent finish if you make it quite thick.

3. You could always angle the head of the neck, like normal guitars. Or, go headless and put a tuner at the saddle end of the guitar.

4. Um, clear. All wood looks good clear.
#3
1: How would I go about acquiring or making a pre-amp? Would just a volume pot do it?

2: Would Epoxy adversely effect sound quality? I am not going to go for a great quality sound, but I do not want the epoxy to butcher it.

3: I feel that angling the neck would put too much pressure on it. It is not going to have a truss rod (although I may re-enforce the back with a metal plate later on) so there would be no fix for neck bend.

4: what I meant is sorta like a fretboard inlay. I was thinking a black tribal design down the fretboard, but I am open to suggestions.
-Instruments-
Squier frankenbass
LTD Deluxe EC-1000 in Vintage Black
1960's Banjuke
Last edited by kranoscorp at Nov 14, 2008,
#4
1.No a volume pot can only make it quieter, not louder. A potentiometer is like a valve on the end of a pump, a very week pump. It can only let out as much as the pump pushes out. So get a bigger pump, a preamp, to up the pumpage!!!!!!!!! Stewmac has a few, and guitar fetish has one I think. You can build one, I don't think they are too complex if you know diagrams and soldering and such. Google it.

2. Potentially, but are you really worried about tone that much? I mean, you have a 1 string bass. I don't think it'll matter that much. I have seen it done on other guitars, and hell, on fenders anymore that finish is just as hard as epoxy. Plus, epoxy still vibrates ya know...

3. Well it's one string, and depending on the scale length (?) of your build a chunky neck might be alright... But angling the neck puts no more pressure on the neck, because the force on the neck is still parallel with the neck and the headstock.

4. Be creative, the rest of us have done it before.

5. Why are these all in numbers? I kind of like it though, makes it easier.

6. Why aren't you making a 4 string bass. If you're taking time to do it, do it right! Plus, a 1 string bass is kind of wimpy. The more strings you have, the more your testicles weigh.
#5
This is probably the best thing to use for reference, sounds a lot like what you're doing, just a tad simpler.

(if not, look up Bogdon Box Basses on google for more tips )
------

Shwiggity.
#6
Make a whamola. Those are hardcore. Its also not much of a change from what you're already doing.

You would need a lever, and I'd still suggest a preamp (like mintbox, or Invader Jims example in the piezo buzzer thread here) for your peizo.
Quote by SomeoneYouKnew
"If I said you had a beautiful body, would you hold it against me?"
#7
A Whamola would be neat, but you wouldn't be able to use a peizo for it, as all it would pick up would be the sound of you hitting the string with a drumstick, which would be much louder than the note. You'd need a normal bass pickup, just put vertical so all four poles are under that one string.

As for you tuning question, you could always do what acoustic basses do and get: http://www.stringsmagazine.com/Media_Files/Products/Lutherie%20Supplies/ViolinPegsYIST135-160-1205.jpg pegs like those for your one string. It's a friction fit peg, so it fits into a hole drilled into the headstock and you just turn and push in to tune.

EDIT: Or you could use a standard bass tuner and simply get a string tee to keep it down below the nut.
#8
That would be a good idea, but the stick is only 3/4" wide, I don't think I would be able to fit it. I want to avoid string trees.

Also, would this work as a preamp?

http://www.jaycar.com.au/productView.asp?ID=AA0220&CATID=&keywords=preamp&SPECIAL=&form=KEYWORD&ProdCodeOnly=&Keyword1=&Keyword2=&pageNumber=&priceMin=&priceMax=&SUBCATID=
-Instruments-
Squier frankenbass
LTD Deluxe EC-1000 in Vintage Black
1960's Banjuke
Last edited by kranoscorp at Nov 15, 2008,
#11
What? Bumping one's own threads is perfectly normal. I believe the forum rules is one self-bump per 24 hours, max 3 per week, but I am pretty sure it applies to just the classifieds section.
-Instruments-
Squier frankenbass
LTD Deluxe EC-1000 in Vintage Black
1960's Banjuke
#12
Quote by kranoscorp
What? Bumping one's own threads is perfectly normal. I believe the forum rules is one self-bump per 24 hours, max 3 per week, but I am pretty sure it applies to just the classifieds section.



Yeah, that's standard practice, so long as you're not spammin'

People bump their own threads all the time, especially if they need input, which happens to be the case here. Unfortunately, the only input I can offer is encouragement, as this will be a way cool project!


One last point, ahem ahem...


MOAR PICS REQUIRRD!
#13
heh... wow. just so happens I was asked to help design a whamola type instrument like 6 years ago... I came across the old CAD drawings on accident last night.
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