|Project by mcshaker||posted 06-03-2009 06:58 PM||11902 views||7 times favorited||9 comments|
So, I made a Bass. How awesome is that.
I cut the circle for the soundboard with the new(used) bandsaw from 1/4” birch plywood. The soundhole was cut using a jigsaw with scroll blade. I colored the top with oil stain and Mixol tints to get a sunburst effect. Then finished with some Poly.
The neck is 2 pieces 4/4 hard maple glued up. Cutting this part was definately the meat of the project. I ended up making 3 of these. The first was too short and scrapped early in the process. The second was I think the best but due to some hardware concerns had to be remade. Third times the charm, I guess? (Important note: always have hardware in hand before starting to cut.) The neck was finished with hand rubbed Tung oil.
The nut and bridge are made from scrap oak I had in the shop. I also had to make the bridge 4 times. First shot was too small and made the bass hard to play. 2 and 3 broke while test fitting because I had the string way overtensioned. So, #4 got overengineered and is basically just a big wedge but it works fine. Finished with oil stain and Poly.
The strings I found on eBay. Steel strings are too tight. Gut strings are too expensive. These are called Weed Whacker Strings. I think they started out as just that, for trimming lawns. But, they work great for this.
I tried to use cheap guitar tuners at first and it caused problems because the strings are so thick. I ended up breaking one trying to get them to work. I ended up having to buy the real electric bass tuners and the drill them out a little for the lowest 2 strings.
The best part of this project is – it sounds great. I placed it in a local music shop asking $300. I hope it sells quick. So I can make a new one for myself.
I figure I could complete this project again in 10-12 hours. You can find the free plans and guides I used at http://www.ehhs.cmich.edu/~dhavlena/db.htm