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Author Topic: Bass Building with Bassksun  (Read 16376 times)

Offline ddwilkins

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #40 on: August 11, 2008, 02:43:07 PM »
Cool, because I never heard of that being a body for an instrument. I thought maybe you can up with something new. ;D
Keep God first and he'll do the rest!!!

Offline bassksun

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Building "Empowered" Step 3 Neck Template
« Reply #41 on: August 11, 2008, 09:45:35 PM »
Bless God. He is worthy!


Step 3 Neck Template. DANGER!

There is no slacking in this area. A bad neck can happen fast. Worse than that; you won't know how bad your neck is until you are done! Trust me...been there...lost sleep.

I would strongly advise that you read this from Stew-Mac http://www.stewmac.com/freeinfo/Neck_relief,_building_and_repair/i-5200.html because it's easy and concise.

OK. Let's plan the neck.

"Empowered" is a 34" scale bass. It's a 4 string. Let's use some Fender specs: Standard 20 frets, Width at nut 1-5/8" (41.28mm), Width at 20th fret 2-1/2" (63.50mm).

Now, we need to calculate how the neck shape relates to the body. This is done by using a fret calculator. You can use this one: http://www.stewmac.com/FretCalculator/ just put in 20 frets at 34" scale and calculate.

OK. The calculator says 35" from the nut to the last row of screws. That means my template has to be long enough to accomodate the length from the nut to the heel. This is a neck through so we can use a single template that will deal with that too.

Finally. Very importantly we have to make sure that the bass will balance. We don't want that uncomfortable neck dive.

Draw it out. Notice that I have a strong center line-CL.

Materials:
Pencil, Yardstick and Sharpie.

1. Measure in about 4" from the edge. Do this 3 times. Mark the CL with the Sharpie.
2. Measure 1/2" from the top of your board. Mark that as the NUT.
3. Measure 35" mark that as BRIDGE SCREWS.
4. Measure 17" from NUT mark this as BOTTOM 12th FRET
5. Measure 23 5/16" from NUT mark that as 20th FRET
6. Measure DOWN 1" from 20th FRET mark as HEEL





Draw in the widths of the neck measurments across the CL. Be sure to be as accurate as possible. Measure 3 Times!!!
Width at nut 1-5/8" (41.28mm) or 13/16" each side
Width at 20th fret 2-1/2" (63.50mm) or 1 1/4 each side
Heel 3 1/4" or 1 3/8" each side


At the HEEL mark make the line 3 1/4 wide. Make another mark lower so that you can make an even shape. This template will help us determine the width of the neck/body laminate.

Connect the dots.





Now do the Headstock. Using the Standard Fender proportions again...
1. Make a box 9" by 5"
2. Make a CL (of course)
3. Mark the bottom line NUT
4. Now take the exact same measurment from the NUT measurment off the NECK TEMPLATE mark that exactly off the CL.
5. Measure up 2" from the nut make a mark.
6. Measure 1 1/4" to the LEFT of the CL. Mark a mark called "E". This is for the E string.
7. From the E mark measure 3/4" to the LEFT. This is how much wood you HAVE to have to support the tuners. NOTE: Some builders may use less. But This is probably your first build..."crawl then walk".
8. Measure closer to the CL for each tuner above E. For example my A string is about 1 1/8" CLOSER to the CL. This will leave plenty of room for string clearance.







Now you get creative. Just be sure to leave at least 2 1/4" between tuners. Follow mine, create your own or copy your bass. Just make sure that you don't cross the CL!

Now let's cut.





Offline bassksun

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Building "Empowered" Step 4 Cut Up Template
« Reply #42 on: August 12, 2008, 01:04:09 PM »

8/12/08

1 God, 1 Christ, 1 Spirit: What else do you REALLY need?


Now we can cut up our template. It is best to stay to outside of your line to the best of your ability. After you cut all of the pieces take some of the left over board and cut a few 1" by 7" pieces. These will be used to make design changes later on. I'll force a design change just to show you how I do it.

Important: This is where we make design changes.
If you don't like your design. Toss it and make another. But Remember; this is a template. It gives you a GENERAL IDEA of what your bass is shaping up to be.

Materials:
Band Saw, 60 grit Sand Paper, File, Dust Mask


Once you have cut everything sand the edges smooth. Start with the body. IMPORTANT: Keep the edges square, don't round them over. Wrap sandpaper over a block of wood for outside edge work. Wrap sandpaper around a spray can for inside work. Use a wood file for tight spots. Keep the edge square and your router will love you.

I get a lot of mileage out of a file like this: http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00931286000P


NOTE: Don't worry about the neck template being perfect. It will NOT be used for routing etc. It will be used for measuring. Also, I cut my body in half. Right down the CL. This gives me a little more room to maneuver.







NOTICE: The upper horn is in a direct line with the 12th fret. This will prevent neck dive.





Next Up Fun Stuff: Let's Talk Lumberrrrrr!

Offline momuzik

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Re: Building "Empowered" Step 4 Cut Up Template
« Reply #43 on: August 12, 2008, 03:08:51 PM »
The upper horn is in a direct line with the 12th fret. This will prevent neck dive.

I never noticed that.

Offline bassksun

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Re: Building "Empowered" Step 4 Cut Up Template
« Reply #44 on: August 12, 2008, 03:31:27 PM »

Offline Ken Felder

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #45 on: August 12, 2008, 07:11:17 PM »
basskun im in the progress as we speak starting the bass. one question dose the with of the nut matter if i want to do a five string ? peace ken.
 

Offline bassksun

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #46 on: August 13, 2008, 12:14:49 AM »
basskun im in the progress as we speak starting the bass. one question dose the with of the nut matter if i want to do a five string ? peace ken.
 

Ken-
Sure does matter.

Try out some 5vers see which neck you like. The popular Rondo SX 5 JBass has: Width of the neck at the nut: 1 3/4"; at the 20th fret: 2 9/16 " .
It's pretty popular. I have one. It's comfy.

God's Love
BKS

Offline bassksun

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Let's Go Shopping for Lumber
« Reply #47 on: August 13, 2008, 10:53:18 AM »
8/13/08

BIBLE=Best Instructions Before Leaving Earth

Now that we have our templates cut and sanded let's go for some wood.

I. Wood and Tone
There are a lot of opinions out there about the value of what woods will provide what tone or coloration in your bass. I won't weigh in on the argument. We are making an electric bass not an acoustic. If you want, go to talkbass/luthier and do a search. You will be busy for a month.

II. Ash is not pretty; Swamp Ash is pretty.
I saw a piece of Burl Maple go for $1200. I also saw a piece of Burl Maple go for $50. The $1200 one was very beautiful, the $50 one was not as nice. But any piece of Burl Maple would be nice wouldn't it? There are no rules here. Let your pocket book and eye decide what you want. Ash may be just fine for your eye.

III. Size Matters
Most Solid Body electric basses are between 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 thick. Too much smaller and the pick up screws may go through, too much larger and only Hulk Hogan can play it. Also, you have to be careful that a dense wood meets thickness correctly. Imagine a solid piece of Walnut or Mahogany 1 3/4" thick! 

IV. Buy the Board Foot not the Pre Cut
Board Foot is a term used to measure and sell wood. (1 bf = $x) For example, A pre cut slab of Mahogany may cost $60 on Ebay the same size slab costs $8.99 for 1 bf. So why don't people do it more? I don't know. I guess the storage, shipping, etc. are too much of a pain. At any rate we are looking to get our core wood at the best possible price and quality.

You can start shopping here if you want, http://www.woodfinder.com/marketplace.php. There must 20 suppliers.


I do most of my shopping with Woodworkers Source http://www.woodworkerssource.com/index.php There are hundreds more. I just like these guys. Do a search. Also, they have great tutorials! Go to the site and you can learn just about any thing.

OK for my version of empowered. I want a Figured Maple Top, Swamp Ash Body, Laminated Maple Neck with a Mahogany or whatever detail. Body is close to 1 1/2" thick.

Let's start with the neck. It's a neck through and I need to go from nut to bridge screws at 35".  It has to be at least 3 1/4" wide. I need some length for the headstock-9". So at least 44" long. Now, I'm buying a board that I have to cut up to get 3 1/4" wide and 1 5/8 thick (room for error). Boards come in certain thicknesses.

These are:

4/4 = 13/16"
6/4 =  1-5/16"
8/4 = 1-13/16"
12/4 = 2-13/16"


I need a Hard Maple Board = 4/4 x 6" x 45" and a Mahogany Board 4/4 x 4" x 45"

I'll use the Woodworkers Board Foot Calculator

Hard Maple 1.88bf (use 2bf) X  $6.99 ($7.00) + cutting .50 = $14.50
Mahogany 1.88bf (use 2bf) X $7.99 ($8.00) + cutting .50 =  $16.50

Now the Body:
Empowered is 19" at the longest point. Each wing is 7" wide. I figure my top wood is going to be near 1/2" Easy. 6/4 X 20" x 15" = 3bf
3bf x $5 + .50 = $15.50

Ok so thats 15.50 + 14.50 + 16.50 = $46.50 before shipping. I've got enough for error and some left over if I need it or want to do nifty things. HA! 1 slab of wood on Ebay!

Next: Top Wood and Fretboard

bks

Offline ddwilkins

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #48 on: August 13, 2008, 01:12:52 PM »
I've got to see and hear this when you are finished. With you kicking this out so fast, it makes me wonder why some builders take 18 months to build an instrument. Yeah, I know all about the details and perfection that luthiers pride in their instruments, but this has me thinking. Keep up the work.
Keep God first and he'll do the rest!!!

Offline bassksun

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #49 on: August 13, 2008, 03:03:54 PM »
I've got to see and hear this when you are finished. With you kicking this out so fast, it makes me wonder why some builders take 18 months to build an instrument. Yeah, I know all about the details and perfection that luthiers pride in their instruments, but this has me thinking. Keep up the work.

Thanks dd! I appreciate your support. This is a "Build Your Own" tutorial for "everyman" and I am excited for how it will sound too! Pray that OUR efforts are annoited.

The Luthier haters will be coming out soon enough. I've crossed a couple lines.

Peace of Christ
bks

Offline CallowHill

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #50 on: August 13, 2008, 03:30:24 PM »
I've got to see and hear this when you are finished. With you kicking this out so fast, it makes me wonder why some builders take 18 months to build an instrument. Yeah, I know all about the details and perfection that luthiers pride in their instruments, but this has me thinking. Keep up the work.

Hah!  Nah, it's not that they take that long to make, but if a builder has 50 basses on order sometimes the build times get stretched.  I clock in around 6 months on average, but it's rare for me to go over 100 hrs in a bass, and the simpler ones take far less time.  Factor in about 3-4 hrs per day dealing with phone calls and email, plus multiple spec changes from customers and the times get stretched big time.  If I built an MDM start to finish I could knock it out in under three weeks, and that includes paint.  Trouble is, backorders and interruptions are HUGE time killers.  Given all I have to do, 4-6 months is about as quick as I can crank out an order, and I work super hard 7 days a week with long hours every day.  Food for thought!

Bassksun,  great post!  Cross as many lines as you want, you'll get no grief from me!  Very cool basses.

Offline jeremyr

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #51 on: August 13, 2008, 03:46:45 PM »
plus multiple spec changes from customers and the times get stretched big time.


 :( :( :( :(


 ;D ;D ;D ;D

With that being said....ROFL..i just sent you an EMAIL!!!

HAHAHA, what a coincidence..lol
Somebody put me in the key of E#

Offline bassksun

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #52 on: August 13, 2008, 03:53:55 PM »
Hah!  Nah, it's not that they take that long to make, but if a builder has 50 basses on order sometimes the build times get stretched.  I clock in around 6 months on average, but it's rare for me to go over 100 hrs in a bass, and the simpler ones take far less time.  Factor in about 3-4 hrs per day dealing with phone calls and email, plus multiple spec changes from customers and the times get stretched big time.  If I built an MDM start to finish I could knock it out in under three weeks, and that includes paint.  Trouble is, backorders and interruptions are HUGE time killers.  Given all I have to do, 4-6 months is about as quick as I can crank out an order, and I work super hard 7 days a week with long hours every day.  Food for thought!

Bassksun,  great post!  Cross as many lines as you want, you'll get no grief from me!  Very cool basses.

Timmmmmm! Thanks!
Thanks for encouraging me! It's been what? 7 basses ago. I'm the guy in Vegas with the Bartolini problem.

Definately NOT a hater. Definately an honest builder. And I have said so before.

bks

Offline CallowHill

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #53 on: August 13, 2008, 04:02:28 PM »
Timmmmmm! Thanks!
Thanks for encouraging me! It's been what? 7 basses ago. I'm the guy in Vegas with the Bartolini problem.

Definately NOT a hater. Definately an honest builder. And I have said so before.

bks

Of course I remember!  I recall you being from Philly as well...

Very cool stuff, it's always cool to see different methods and build philosophies.  I'll be checking in on the thread, keep up the great work!

Now if only I could get Jeremy to settle on an idea... ;)

Offline Ken Felder

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #54 on: August 13, 2008, 04:02:32 PM »
BASKUN I HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT THE SELECTING WOODS. WHEN YOU SAY A FIGURE MAPEL TOP. IS THAT THE TOP FINISH. AND WHEN YOU SAY LAMINATED NECK IS THAT THE NECK THROUGH PART WHERE THE EARS AND THE  NECK OF THE BASS ARE GLUED TOGETHER. ALSO TO GET THE STRIPED LOOK, IS THAT TWO OR MORE WOODS GLUED TOGETHER.
PEACE KEN

Offline bassksun

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #55 on: August 13, 2008, 05:57:59 PM »
BASKUN I HAVE A QUESTION ABOUT THE SELECTING WOODS. WHEN YOU SAY A FIGURE MAPEL TOP. IS THAT THE TOP FINISH.

No sir. It is actually the wood. It is called "Figured Maple". The "Figure" can come in different types: Pillow (looks like little pillows), Tiger Stripe, Flamed, Quilted or just plain old figured. I ordered figured so, I'll post a pic.


 
Quote
AND WHEN YOU SAY LAMINATED NECK IS THAT THE NECK THROUGH PART WHERE THE EARS AND THE  NECK OF THE BASS ARE GLUED TOGETHER..

Yes and Sort of Yes Sir. Read On.

Quote
ALSO TO GET THE STRIPED LOOK, IS THAT TWO OR MORE WOODS GLUED TOGETHER.

When we glue 2 or more woods together that is called a "laminate". Because we are not making a bolt on neck, we call it the neck laminate or neck lam. To get that striped look requires pieces that are sanded to a desired thickness. We are not going to that level on "Empowered". We are trying to keep materials under $300. BUT we will have at least 1 thick line because we will glue in a piece of Mahogany and some very fine lines caused by wood contrast.

OK?
Peace
BKS

Offline bassksun

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #56 on: August 13, 2008, 06:19:35 PM »

Now if only I could get Jeremy to settle on an idea... ;)

What's up wit dat?  :-X

Offline bassthumpa

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #57 on: August 14, 2008, 08:14:05 AM »
Basskun, this is a FANTASTIC thread!  I'll be watching closely...

Now if only I could get Jeremy to settle on an idea... ;)

LOL!!!!!! ;D ;D ;D

Offline ddwilkins

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #58 on: August 14, 2008, 08:14:38 AM »
Jeremy, let Tim build your bass!!!! ;D ;D ;D
Keep God first and he'll do the rest!!!

Offline jeremyr

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Re: Bass Building with Bassksun
« Reply #59 on: August 14, 2008, 10:47:56 AM »
Jeremy, let Tim build your bass!!!! ;D ;D ;D

LOL, my main specs are finished, however I wanted a little something special on the back of the bass that Tim is working on.
Somebody put me in the key of E#
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