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mhoss32

Experimental Prototype bass... I hope

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Absolutely mind boggling skills. Can't wait to see it finished!

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@mhoss32 - do these come in a 6 or 7 string format? If so, I've got a packet of gummie bears with your name on it! 😜

Excellent work sir, I'd estimate you'd be looking at 7 to 10k for this kind of spec from a 'known' luthier, assuming they'd even want to undertake the work involved in that marquetry! 

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Posted (edited)
On 02/02/2021 at 03:40, mhoss32 said:

Glad to hear it @bloke_zero :) always nice to meet some fellow electro-nerds

The Opamps are really an interesting point when it comes to this kind of thing. obvously the main factor in choosing them for most manufacturers is how long they can last on a single 9v, but take a look around online and you will find that the tried and tested TL062 and LM358 that are often used are a bit behind the times. annoyingly, the best of the best of opamps available right now are surface mount only, as opposed to socketed, but maybe ill try and get a board made up with them in the future :)

I know a guy...😎

But seriously,  I'm hardly ever using through-hole opamps these days in my DIY builds, and the rest of your build needn't be all SMT if you don't fancy that. Or you can put the SMDs on DIP adapters and plug them into old school boards as usual, which I've also done quite a  few times.

As far as outboard powering, technically it's only "phantom" if something else is also on the same cable conductor as the power supply. I used +/- 15V via 3 pin XLR in one bass for many years, and right now I'm working through what format to use to take advantage of this 4 pin XLR arrangement:

 

MV4FL_cabling1.thumb.JPG.8f95dd823bf7a14d85e1914e6572f61a.JPG

 

Great build thread, I'm really looking forward to seeing how it all pans out!

 

 

 

Edited by Passinwind
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@Passinwind thats an awesome looking thing! at present im working on +24v, GND and L and R channels in a 4 pin micro XLR for this one, with an option for either stereo or mono from the other side of the pedal. :)

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, mhoss32 said:

@Passinwind thats an awesome looking thing! at present im working on +24v, GND and L and R channels in a 4 pin micro XLR for this one, with an option for either stereo or mono from the other side of the pedal. :)

That bass was a "gift" from my friend Marco Cortes, more like work barter really. He gave it to me with no electronics installed at all beyond the custom sidewinder pickups. My current plan is one normal mixed output to my normal SS rig and then a second buffered one for the bridge pickup that will go to my new DIY tube amp, which I would mostly use for my goofy slide bass schtick. So kind of Ric-O like, with no need to switch anything for the normal mixed mode.

I've been planning on throwing a rechargeable 13.2V (or more) supply in the outboard box eventually, and who knows what preamp format, but right now I just have a standard 9V battery and one of my DIY three banders in the usual B/M/T format.

Edited by Passinwind
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On 05/04/2021 at 19:03, Passinwind said:

As far as outboard powering, technically it's only "phantom" if something else is also on the same cable conductor as the power supply. I used +/- 15V via 3 pin XLR in one bass for many years, and right now I'm working through what format to use to take advantage of this 4 pin XLR arrangement:

So how about if you put the signal on top of the supply and to the same wire? Ground is the same after all. Three wires is enough for the two sided supply, the ground and the signal.

INSTRUMENT (bass output -*- 9 volt in) --- CABLE --- (9 V supply -*- amp input) AMPLIFIER

Put some capacitors in place of the stars (*) and you can make the signal ride on top of the supply voltage. This is common in big video systems. If you use a 4 pin XLR, you can get a stereo output, too. I think Alembic uses a 5 pin XLR and keeps all signals separated from each other.

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6 hours ago, itu said:

So how about if you put the signal on top of the supply and to the same wire? Ground is the same after all.

Of course, and that's how microphone phantom power on a balanced feed has been done for ages. But I haven't actually needed a bipolar supply or a voltage much above 9V for that particular bass and the preamps I've built for it so far, especially with the new-ish moderate current opamps the last couple have used.

Another tack I've been contemplating is using one conductor for remote control of my amp. I'm old and lazy and don't use pedals partly because bending over to adjust them is too much work, so if I can facilitate further slacking all the better! 

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First round of finsihing is complete :)

 uc?export=download&id=1yrihYS9yL8qvRPEIU-c9-zFw16X--umH uc?export=download&id=1yzkZ-fOYGIfnICBl8CYm8m37p7pdMY95

This first few layers are Crimson Guitars' High build finishing oil, over a surface sanded to 400 Grit. colour wise im extremely happy indeed, the contrast in the marquetry came out really nicely. the target is a nice even satin finish across the whole bass, which im using renaissance wax (conservators wax) slowly built up on top of the finishing oil.

uc?export=download&id=1ym31o6xrelDh8aGoOHdpBwmx0LreE6VX

From this angel you can see the effect i was going for with the s matched top, with the flame of the redwood matching up nicely throughout the body :) the flame on the upper horn is especially nice. once ive got some more coats on and a slightly more even finish, ill get some nice close up shots.

im also going to put together the power pedal, as well as the custom cable that will be needed for power/signal this week... and then its time to put it all together!!

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19 minutes ago, SpondonBassed said:

Phenomenal!

Da daaa dadada!

 

Yes yes, I'm leaving...

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2 hours ago, mhoss32 said:

This first few layers are Crimson Guitars' High build finishing oil, over a surface sanded to 400 Grit.

out of interest why didn't you go finer than 400 grit? 

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Thanks Guys!! @LukeFRC, generally because the finsihing oil isn't so much the finish as it is filling the grain and adding some depth and colour. once a few coats are on and before the wax finish, ill keep wet sanding to much higher Grits :)

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3 minutes ago, mhoss32 said:

Thanks Guys!! @LukeFRC, generally because the finsihing oil isn't so much the finish as it is filling the grain and adding some depth and colour. once a few coats are on and before the wax finish, ill keep wet sanding to much higher Grits :)

Got you! :) 

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Whilst the style isn't quite my thing, I have to say this is one amazing looking bass. I'm looking forward to hearing it.

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Sorry for the delay on this update guys, its been a hell of a busy week. Lots going on with another little project that i'll share with you all soon, but in the meantime:

uc?export=download&id=1ZmmVmuhKd4xp7x5dHrmqJjVzibIEi5y9

im building the external power supply for the bass. The original plan was to build a pretty simple pedal with a 12v input, and a normal 24v DC-DC converter. ive changed this plan slightly for a couple of reasons. firstly, this big DC-DC converter is fully isolated, a bit like a pedal "wall wart", which means that i can use pretty much any normal power supply and feed it into this (the input voltage range is 9-18V DC) with a 24V isolated output. the second change is that i found a rather natty red aluminium chassis on youtube, and liked the look of it better than a pedal. sometimes its just something that catches your eye!

first step was tapping the holes for the bolts i wanted to use. these chassis come un-tapped so you have the option of different screw types:

uc?export=download&id=1-zZmsYZTlqg2Cp9nL

and once it was all jammed in together, this is what it ended up looking like:

uc?export=download&id=1-krFKUgYiwCRPjwrI uc?export=download&id=1-kDIBApHqT0uOunO0

i think its fairly smart! plus its small and light enough to fit into a hardcase alongside the bass, so thats a plus. very simple: its just the 4 pin micro XLR on the front, and a DC Jack, a switch and a 1/4" jack socket on the rear, with a switch. the switch lets me flip between stereo output or mono output, letting me use the external power with traditional as well as stereo amplification. in the picture aboce the switch is set to stereo, with a stereo jack cable coming out the back. this then runs to the 2 inputs on the back of the Boss VF-1, which the runs to the 2 inputs of the Peavy IPR-1600, which outputs to the 2 1x10 Eden cabs below. this will hopefully be the normal setup for this, but i just need to carry a standard jack to jack to run it straight into any normal bass amp as well :)

having got a few additional coats of the high build oil and a couple of coats of the Wax, the sheen was bang on where i wanted it. just shiny enough without really being "glossy"

i realised there were a couple of small drilling jobs i hadnt yet done, so i used a spare Pickup pcb to drill holes for the threaded brass inserts that will accept the pickup screws:

uc?export=download&id=10Plzd3xAT7rLNx9tHUIfjn2FVlVPgvB7 uc?export=download&id=10OsAiejSsCQQ177ip-HB_mkXv8mcgvMK

somewhat frustratingly, the gold screws i used for the coil height adjustment dont come long enough for the pickup mounting screws. one change id definately make next time round is shortening the coils to make the pickup slightly shorter. regardless, i did manage to find some nice gold hex bolts that came in the correct length that fit just fine, but with the rounder flatter head like these:

uc?export=download&id=1l5A5BTwDhfYJGvAPAr4MYJ_KoSi7BdYl

So, all holes drilled, hardware in place:

uc?export=download&id=10D6BDLCryqI1fcpic

we're getting a lot closer now :)

so no we begin to get into wiring... whcih honestly turned out to be not quite as painful as id initially expected!

uc?export=download&id=10BwhpRAVklBg6KPfOYOb-yVYKRWRedtQ

The battery board is a tight squeeze, but that was intentional. the 24v power from the XLR runs to both the preamps as well as to this board. i decided to have it this way up as the little check battery button and lights are visible. i think i may leave it loose in there once all is done as a well fitted cover should hold it in place just fine, and allow easier swaps of the three batteries if i ever need to do that.

After lining the control cavity in copper tape, i started to run the various cables from the push/pull volume into the main cavity. some braided sleeving from my PC building parts helps keep everything from looking like spaghetti!

The wires from the pickups, as well as the battery connections get the same treatment, wth some 2.54mm block connectors at each ens so i can easily swap the preamps in and out if need to

uc?export=download&id=105PjslxNtmOzwB9e6  uc?export=download&id=10-QW50qKkMUt8dVWE

and once everything is in place, it was time for a first fit of everything to see how it all came together... deep breath:

uc?export=download&id=105ow0dRp-CFUGms2y uc?export=download&id=111kzDhfBbmZ9asdqv

the black and white control knobs im very happy with, and the tuners a sperzel locking tuners which seem to hold everything very nice and solid. i cut a fresh nut from another block of Tusq graphite, and strung it with some Optima Golds. they handle the angle round the bigsby really well and help tie the look together, plus they sound fantastic. This may look pretty close to finsihed, but theres still work to do. the cavity covers i haven't made yet, and i think there may be some component changes needed for the preamps once its all up and running but we're very close to a finished bass now :)

once its all buttoned up, ill get some proper beauty shots in natural light, as well as some sound clips!

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It looks like a fantastic love child between a Bolin, a Wal, a Carl Thompson and a Ritter whilst being entirely unique! 

An astonishing job sir! Can't wait to hear it! 

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Lovely work and one hell of a concept you've developed and brought to fruition, (well, almost) I hope it delivers everything you were aiming for once you've had the chance to put it through it's paces.

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