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Andyjr1515

Finished! A Very Special Save

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2 hours ago, Si600 said:

Apropos whizzing on the electric fence, Mythbusters, IIRC, did just that. Apparently the stream separates into droplets long before it gets to the fence.

I'm told that it was also put to Mythbusters to see if licking a Scalextric track would prevent you tasting sherbert for a number of years.  It was apparently rejected because the show's producers considered it "ridiculous that anyone would be that stupid."

;)

 

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OK.  Bridge not fitted yet - I won't do that until the neck is bolted in place - but basically the body is finished with the scratchplate fitted and the pickup working as it should:

a7U66SOh.jpg

@Fishman had asked me if I could do anything with the pick/nail scratches on the pickguard, so the above is after I've given that a bit of attention.  You can see them clearly here on a 'before' shot:

1zXP95nl.jpg

It's quite a delicate operation, because the surface is textured and slightly shiny, so you want to remove the main visual edges of the scratches without taking that bobbly surface or shine away.

I did another 'wet & dry' approach but this time where the sanding medium was some pretty fine micro-web and the wet was good old beeswax balsam (this will be used for the final clean and polish up of the finished bass) and even so applied very, very lightly in stages of wipe off, buff up, look at the result, repeat. 

kBjkEpil.jpg

If you look very closely, you can see the lines, but they are very faint now and - as you can see in the photo - pretty invisible from normal distance :)

So this is going to a safe storage place until those pesky unf bolts and cupped washers arrive ;)

 

 

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45 minutes ago, Andyjr1515 said:

I'm told that it was also put to Mythbusters to see if licking a Scalextric track would prevent you tasting sherbert for a number of years.  It was apparently rejected because the show's producers considered it "ridiculous that anyone would be that stupid."

;)

 

Which to be fair is a fairly reasonable comeback

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Ah, I see that I’m a little late to the game here but I’ve just taken a couple of snaps that I thought might have been useful. Still they’ll be a confirmation for you. Here’s a few snaps of the jack assembled on my Pro 2E which should confirm the wiring and that a standard TRS switching arrangement is fine.

BD9D7FD1-C001-4500-8F3A-CC236EE49DF4.thumb.jpeg.1b0edf161374b2e3e02a74589c1d1f2c.jpeg

253C6F72-2913-45A9-B06B-D011E9634E9F.thumb.jpeg.ccff482843ef1debc5373d8fd96d3792.jpeg

C708379D-E983-46F8-BE5D-68B248E70A5A.thumb.jpeg.662b10c6cae70f84aa110271a8b2471c.jpeg

FFE569FD-248D-436A-9B80-FBEB2B187F93.thumb.jpeg.1d5f956d78aed328869daf5ac5b7f46c.jpeg

 

In fact, I was a little surprised that it was a standard TRS as the Custom series use this fabulously ingenious Switchcraft jack socket that completely isolates the power circuit from the signal path....

52C668DB-45FD-4C9F-A423-D8173DC7F6F2.thumb.jpeg.b10f621281f577d7389780438ec91cad.jpeg

Instead of the TRS with the R and S connecting the power it is a TS socket but with a completely separate “make” switch incorporated activated by the jack pushing the little Teflon plastic cup. They also do a “break” version and a “make/break” one. Jolly clever.

Edited by TrevorR
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5 hours ago, Andyjr1515 said:

A quick call to @Rich ; @MoonBassAlpha or anyone else wot knows.

I'm just about to do a 'tap' test of the pickup now that everything is grounded, etc..

The circuit board has two outputs to the jack connector:

K9XakDol.jpg

I'm assuming that they are both the same and I can choose either one?

No, I can confirm that one connector is for power and the instrument level signal. The other is for the optional integrated  XLR DI (complete with ground lift). Paul from Wal found one in an old box about 10 years ago and kindly added it to my bass...

 

96E618EC-050B-478F-AD57-3D1716A4712E.jpeg

7919EC4F-3A0C-4D06-9B2F-428C7ACB623D.jpeg

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2 hours ago, TrevorR said:

No, I can confirm that one connector is for power and the instrument level signal. The other is for the optional integrated  XLR DI (complete with ground lift). Paul from Wal found one in an old box about 10 years ago and kindly added it to my bass...

 

96E618EC-050B-478F-AD57-3D1716A4712E.jpeg

7919EC4F-3A0C-4D06-9B2F-428C7ACB623D.jpeg

I want one of those..! :o do you reckon he's got any more old boxes knocking around..?

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3 hours ago, ezbass said:

This build already looks fantastic. I want it!

Oy!

Get in line you 😖

There's now two basses Andy's working on that I want 😆

😉

Edited by BassTool
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2 minutes ago, MoonBassAlpha said:

I don't suppose Wal would sell their bridges separately?

No - I think @Fishman has already sounded them out although I believe there were some smaller things they were happy to help with.

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2 hours ago, Rich said:

I want one of those..! :o do you reckon he's got any more old boxes knocking around..?

Sadly I very much doubt it. 🙁 I’d been asking him for quite a while but he didn’t have any. Then I sent the bass in to have the pots changed for proper ones with a shaft because the little splines on the knobs were getting old and fragile and breaking off.

When I picked it up he said he’d got a little surprise and showed me. He’s found it in an old box and fitted it. He said it was a “thank you” for all the promotion from the blog. As it is, the DI’s not as good as the Custom Series one. It’s a lower output - fine but nothing special... but yeah, nice to have!

Edited by TrevorR
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13 hours ago, MoonBassAlpha said:

I don't suppose Wal would sell their bridges separately?

I did ask Paul for a bridge but he said he couldn't provide one – I did get a string retainer and a case though

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On 20/02/2021 at 12:50, Andyjr1515 said:

12v Scalextric track runs should taste even better.

It's the massive 100Hz ripple from the unsmoothed rectifier that tastes so good.  There's tingle for you.

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55 minutes ago, NickA said:

It's the massive 100Hz ripple from the unsmoothed rectifier that tastes so good.  There's tingle for you.

Mmmmm, ripple.

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57 minutes ago, NickA said:

It's the massive 100Hz ripple from the unsmoothed rectifier that tastes so good.  There's tingle for you.

It was the 'life flashing before your eyes near death experience' I remember the most xD 

Mind you, useful in a way.  I remembered where I'd hidden my pocket money a few years earlier... 

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Great news!  The UNF bolts and cup washers have been shipped :)

In the meantime, amongst the final prep stuff for the body, the ferrules at the back have been put in:

ZnCbmbVl.jpg

 

And the all important 'This is not a genuine Wal body' mark stamped in:

lK2wsEil.jpg

 

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And the neck is on!

TD7Y22dl.jpg

The edges of the holes will be tidied up, but everything fits and the neck is on nice and tight.

So now I can position the bridge.  This needs to be at the correct scale length and also line up with the neck and - preferably - the pickup poles.  I threaded a couple of 'test strings' through the back and loosely over the tuners, then positioned at the 1st fret with a capo.  This allowed me to position the bridge until it was all lined up and mark the hole positions:

lV1hiX0l.jpg

 

So bridge holes drilled and bridge fixed.  It's not playable yet because I have to plane off Wal's original neck heel shim to reduce the neck angle a touch - but it all lines up      Phew! :)

 

OyvBd4Ll.jpg

 

So tomorrow is about adjusting the neck angle to get the right action range, fitting the string tree and cutting the graphtech nut blank.  Then we can see if we can get any sounds from it ;)

And then, it's just the final action and intonation set up and strap buttons...and then, unless I've forgotten anything major, it's pretty much done :)

 

 

 

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Well, a lot of set up still to do and a few remaining jobs, but we actually have a playing bass! :)

First job was cutting the new nut from the Graphtech Black Tusq XL blank:

cb7jct3l.jpg

 

Then a look at the Wal shim.  The neck angle is dependant on the bridge height and I suspect the original Wal bridge sits higher than the new Hipshot because the strings are far too low with not enough saddle adjustment to reach even the minimum action height. 

It's a funny old business but folks are often very sniffy about shims - 'a decent luthier doesn't need a shim' is an oft stated opinion.  Well, you don't get much more decent luthier than Wal and every Wal neck I've ever seen has one of these...

OtNjGhVl.jpg

And anyway, for starters it had to go.  With it planed and scrapered off, I could get to normal action heights, albeit with the saddles adjusted pretty high so I will probably add a slightly thinner one than this to the front edge of the heel so I can drop the adjusters on the saddles a touch...but with is as it is, it plays!

eu6F1bll.jpg

And even through my not-a-proper-bass-rig it sounds pretty darned fine :)

So, still to do:

- A bit more work on the heel angle to get the action range of the saddles a touch better

- final set-up work on the frets

- final tidy up of the fretboard, edges rounding, etc

- string tree

- tidy up the  neck bolt recesses

- fit the strap buttons

Edited by Andyjr1515
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Loving this so much. It’s a Wal Mk1515 - I’d buy one.

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Posted (edited)

The new Wal string tree came with standard small wood screws.  I always think that, assuming they are fitted properly, set screws and inserts are better.

They don't really do the large-threaded inserts in such small size, but the type you see on the right - I think more designed for metal - work fine as long as the drill hole is accurate:

5EsNxKMl.jpg

I've experimented with inserting them into much softer woods than the maple neck and then trying to lever out the screw and it holds fast.  Now, I used to think that the slot went in the top - I assumed this was a screwdriver slot.  It emphatically doesn't and isn't 9_9  That's the bit that cuts the thread and I'm pretty sure that it was a wise sage on this forum that put me straight! :D  

So for insertion, you use a screw and nuts, or in my case, a screw and another insert, to 'lock-nut' with the one you are inserting.  This is what I've done with the one on the left in the photo above.  This keeps it all straight and inserting is a breeze.  In this shot, the insert I'm fitting is almost fully in and you can see the 'driver' insert and set screw locked into it and driving it round and in.  Like a locknut, a quick reverse direction of the screwdriver and the screw and driver just loosen to come apart:

DotPZUql.jpg

I've positioned the new string tree in the best place for the strings rather than exactly where the old one was but - unless you look really really closely, it pretty much covers the marks and holes from the original:

v3gXlbzl.jpg

And this is at full pitch with, so far, no embarrassing 'ping' sound of the string tree flying off like a rock from a medieval trebuchet! ;)

 

 

 

  

Edited by Andyjr1515
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