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Manton Customs

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  1. While all that is very accurate, it really only applies to instruments which have not had proper fretwork done. Which is actually a lot of mass produced instruments, typically the frets are not levelled on these at the factory - just installed using a method which is very consistent to ensure they are level. However it will produce that slight hump you describe. This doesn't happen when the frets are levelled by any good luthier as they will always level the frets along the string paths. Which removes this (very slight) hump.
  2. Lacquer Loss on Head - Help Please

    Ah! I didn't think it looked that lacquer like. As mentioned above - drop filling won't work quite as well, as the repairs won't burn into the existing finish, so you'll see witness lines between old and new material. However if you're not worried about it looking perfect you can still use a similar procedure, except instead of using Nitro, use super glue.That's the recognised way of drop filling Poly. But a refinish of the headstock face would be the best bet....or just leaving it.
  3. Lacquer Loss on Head - Help Please

    What @Norris said, (provided it is definitely Nitro) would be the fix. How come it's Nitro, is it a vintage P bass? I don't think you're in much danger of losing the decal though, unless there is an underlying finish adhesion issue or you keep whacking it into things . So the option to just leave it as mojo is there. If you do decide to fix it- Wood dust on Maple doesn't really work, Maple is too pale and the wood dust will darken when glued/finished, so the filled areas will actually be more obvious. I can't actually see an application for it here anyway either. Also if you buy Nitro sold for spraying equipment it will speed things up, as the aerosols have a lot of thinners in them, so most of what you put down evaporates. The spraying type comes with a higher solid content and is supposed to be thinned to spray. Where you buy it from will depend on how thick it is. I have some here which supposed to be thinned 50/50....it's very thick and treacly which makes it good for drop filling. That's what this technique is called by the way, so if you want to do some googling of "drop filling lacquer" you may find some more helpful info. Anyway, you could perhaps buy a bottle of the spraying variety for the drop filling the larger areas and an aerosol for the final over coats if you don't have spray equipment. It may also be good to start with the thinner stuff so you can wick it in there as Norris described. You should definitely be able to solidify it, but it'll probably not look perfect.
  4. Fixing superficial scratches

    Meguiars Ultimate works well (smells good too) and if you want mega levels of gloss and more importantly an even nicer smell you can follow up with their ultimate polish too. That's a finer version of the ultimate, so it's still mildly abrasive - does little for removing scratches, but gives an extra shine. I also really like the Menzerna range of compounds, they seem to perform a bit better than Meguiars, but are less available without buying online. As others have mentioned take care not to burn through round the edges, but usually the factory poly is very thick, so quite difficult to burn through with this level of compound.
  5. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    As explained in my previous post there is too much exposure on the Ebony fingerboard picture, it is in fact as black as Ebony gets. Both basses are lacquered, not sure why you'd think otherwise, unless you're actually suggesting that the colour can affect the tone. If that's what you're getting at - the black bass was dyed rather than having colour coats sprayed, so there is no additional finish thickness. Not having a pic of the headstock is an odd observation, they are on my website but I'm not allowed to direct people there, so have tried to avoid doing so. Sorry I can only laugh at black v.s chrome hardware and I'd be happy to do so in the face of an "aggressive audiophile" too You can not tell the density of a piece of wood by looking at a pic like this and darker does not mean denser. This is Indian Rosewood, the most common species used for instruments and well below Ebony in density, stiffness and Janka hardness. The Ebony is certainly not sapwood. Both pieces are rated as AAA grade by the suppliers due to their colour. I've included another pic at the end of this post of the headstock where you can see the Ebony and how the light is over exposing the pic in places. There are no shims in either neck pocket, I would count that as a failure if I built a bass which required shimming from day one. As said before both necks are cut from the same board and the same dimensions, so they are both under the same stress and required the same amount of truss rod adjustment. No, I didn't use a torque reader, one generally doesn't when screwing into wood. So I really don't think you have noticed any additional variables, apart from the Chrome hardware thing....lol
  6. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    :)...Just the lighting of the photos, the Ebony has direct sunlight on it and is buffed to a high sheen so it's reflecting back a bit. The Rosewood pic was taken on a much greyer day, so looks a bit darker than it is.
  7. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    I suppose! I do believe the woods make a small difference, but it's not that relevant of a difference for most people in any real world situation. This difference can be heard to a certain extent in the clips, it's definitely there, but it is fairly subtle. It's more pronounced acoustically, but these are electric basses. Both basses sound nice to my ears and if there were any characteristics there I didn't like I'd use the EQ on my amp (obviously not in the test though!). But I can't say I have ever had to do that before to make up for something which I believed was caused by wood choice. I don't believe there is one wood which is going to make an instrument sound either amazing, or unpleasant. I have used some seldom used woods (perhaps never) in guitar building and not one of them has sounded completely different. Just subtle differences again. As some woods in the same species can vary massively (Ash can be featherweight or a boat anchor for example), I don't think there's any way of accurately predicting how the bass will sound as a whole based on the species of wood picked. Especially when you start using multi species laminate necks. Another area where the tonewood thing gets a bit difficult is describing the tone...it's really not that easy to do and some people will hear different things. I've had people describe the tone in these clips in completely the opposite way that I hear and would describe it. So I generally pick my woods on suitability, stability, weights and appearance. Those things will affect the ownership experience far more than any slight differences in tone. But I'm not saying it's not there, or that this is the only way to see it.
  8. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    Step forward the one guy who voted option two (Ebony, Rosewood, Ebony, Rosewood) you got it right :). Thanks all for voting and commenting.
  9. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    Answer day tomorrow, thanks for the votes and comments so far.
  10. “Tonewood” comparison, Rosewood vs Ebony fretboard sound clips.

    For further clarification- 1, I largely agree, I’m not trying to prove anything once and for all, challenge anyone or change anyone’s mind, just provide a possibly interesting soundclip for discussion. I can say though that all pieces of wood (minus the fretboards) were cut from the same boards for both basses though. Both bodies are 1 piece, so there are only two joints - the bolt on neck joint which was milled to the exact same tolerances and the fingerboard (which you’d have to be a complete hack to get any kind of void in). So they are really as close as you can practically get with two basses. And yes I did take a reading of the pickups and have the figures written down (will provide them later) 2, Yes, but it’d be fairly impractical to record and analyse 50 basses, I was simply working with what I had on hand. 3, Yep, there will be a personal bias, I did mention the human element in the original post. As for expecting any certain results - I went into it as open minded as I could and I’m not going to disclose my thoughts on the “tonewood” subject at this time. I believe this thread can still be interesting in a number of ways without proving or dispelling anything for certain. As said at the beginning the poll is a bit of fun. They were recorded in WAV, but I can’t help what soundcloud might do to it afterwards.
  11. This subject comes up fairly often, but it’s not very often that people actually get to compare two (damn near) identical basses back to back. So, I thought I would put this sound clip up. Both basses are the same, except for the fretboard wood. They both have the same hardware, pickup, body/neck woods, setup and they both have the same strings. Both basses were recorded the same way and I did my best to play consistently (but there will always be a human element). To ensure we are not ‘hearing with our eyes’ I’m not going to reveal which one is which until the threads been open a sufficient period. There’s a poll too, but that’s more of a bit of fun as there’s a 50/50 chance of being right even if you just guess blindly (deafly!?). In the soundclip each bass is separated by the clicks counting in, whenever you hear those clicks the bass is switched. So the options are - Rosewood, Ebony, Rosewood, Ebony Ebony, Rosewood, Ebony, Rosewood Or a third option- I can hear no difference Have fun!
  12. LED fretboard inlay

    What I was saying is there are compromises with both if you're installing yourself and there's only so big you could go with fibres. The original poster is asking about installation so I thought I'd chime in with my personal experience of doing just that. Removing the fretboard to replace a burnt out LED would definitely suck but it's not impossible either. They do tend to last a very long time also. Ive also heard of people cracking fibres when removing the neck on a bolt on bass too. Which would be just as bad as a burnt out LED. Anyway...my preference is luminlay :p. Obviously not the same effect as either but does the job on a dark stage.
  13. LED fretboard inlay

    I've done the fibre optic thing and not sure I would do it again. They're a pain to work with and they have to be really quite small to bend enough to get them in place. It's also quite a big bunch of fibres compared to the wires of an LED chain. It does have the benefit of not having to worry about the bulb going though. Theres a tutorial for both LEDs and fibre optics over on talkbass.
  14. Refinishing A Bass

    You can test the finish using Acetone - put a small bit of Acetone on the end of a cotton bud or tissue and wipe it on an inconspicuous area (i.e an area where it wouldn't matter if it melted the finish). If it melts/has an obvious effect, then the finish is Nitro.