Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

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Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Thu Jun 18, 2009 3:59 am

I have 2 bolt-on basses, an Ibanez Roadstar and a Smith Burner CR4, both 4-strings, 34-in scale. They are both sweet players, but I'm noticing after playing some repetetive lines in first position (reggae gigs) that I might actually be happier with a little less spread between frets. I'm realizing that it's time to give up the macho sensibility and get on with function.

So, although it may prove prohibitive (and I may end up shopping for a new bass) I'm looking into the possibility of having shorter necks built for my basses. They are different dimensions, different neck pockets, etc, so I may be barking up a tall tree here. Any thoughts? Are there suppliers who deal in this kind of thing, like Warmouth, etc.?

Thanks for your time.
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby ghiadub » Thu Jun 18, 2009 7:27 am

Most after market necks are to fender spec on the neck pocket and 34" scale. Putting a shorter smaller scale neck on one of your basses can be done, but you will probibly need to take it to a luthier.

If you have trouble playing up in the first posistion, you might consider tuning the bass to BEAD and playing in the 2nd posistion (5th fret).
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Thu Jun 18, 2009 6:57 pm

ghiadub wrote:Most after market necks are to fender spec on the neck pocket and 34" scale. Putting a shorter smaller scale neck on one of your basses can be done, but you will probibly need to take it to a luthier.

If you have trouble playing up in the first posistion, you might consider tuning the bass to BEAD and playing in the 2nd posistion (5th fret).


This has occured to me... Probably will happen while I shop for a short. I am re-thinking the replacement neck idea, but have to consider everything for it's worth, I guess. Thanks ghiadub.
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Fri Jun 19, 2009 12:55 pm

I have re-tuned my bass down to "D-G-C-F". Problem is solved for the time being: The heavy LaBella flats are slacked up a bit, and all fingerings and positions have moved up two frets, so it's like playing a shorter-scale bass. And bonus- I still retain the balance and feel of my Ibanez, which I like very much! [smilie=grinning-smiley-003.gif]

Thanks for the helpful advice, ghiadub. [smilie=food-smiley-004.gif]
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby ghiadub » Fri Jun 19, 2009 3:16 pm

Glad to help Sloom.

More tips; If you find you like it, but the tension is too low, or if you want to go a little lower, you will probibly want to put on some thicker strings.

I just buy a "lite" B string from a 5 string set (120 or 130) and move the rest of the strings down one string.
You might have to make the nut slots a teeny bit wider and add some graphite lube to the nut.

I have a couple of 4 string basses tuned to BEAD, I just use the lower 4 of a 5 string set and I have a spare nut for the thicker strings.
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby ghiadub » Fri Jun 19, 2009 3:25 pm

If you are still actually looking for a shortie; these might be a cheap way to see if you dig it:
http://www.rondomusic.com/spb57lpbshort.html
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Sun Jun 21, 2009 1:23 am

I have actually done that, and for the moment may go back there. I appreciate your help man, glad I'm not the only son of the Mother of Invention! [smilie=food-smiley-004.gif]

Also looked at Rondo Music, and am considering the possibilities!
"Whatever we do, it is what it is, and we do it".
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Rob Francis » Sun Jun 21, 2009 6:23 am

If you find a shortscale neck you can adjust the pocket to accomodate if you need to. Then just reset the bridge to scale and you're back in biz [smilie=fun_84.gif]
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby steveonbass » Sun Jun 21, 2009 7:40 am

For the cost of the neck and all the hassle, I think it would make more sense to just find an existing short scale bass that you really like.
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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Sun Jun 21, 2009 3:56 pm

steveonbass wrote:For the cost of the neck and all the hassle, I think it would make more sense to just find an existing short scale bass that you really like.


This is likely to happen sooner than the math and jigs I'll need to come up with to adjust the bass- but I've considered it! But it finally gets down to an hours-in-the-day issue...
"Whatever we do, it is what it is, and we do it".
-The Grubs.


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Re: Short / Med-Scale Replacement Necks?

Postby Sloom » Sat Jul 25, 2009 6:52 am

I've been in logistics heck, and have done, sadly, nothing about this stuff! But I'm getting there... I was going to have Michael Dolan build me a neck, but am bagging it- I just don't have the scratch I thought I did.

Still at the drawing board. For now I'm going to find a 5-string set and go BEAD on the Ibanez. Again, thanks for all the interest!
"Whatever we do, it is what it is, and we do it".
-The Grubs.


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