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Building a Wal....ish


funkle

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14 minutes ago, Andyjr1515 said:

I'd taken a punt and ordered some fretwire based on looking closely at stock photos of various Wals but the timing of @NickA 's post was spot on.  I can always use fretwire and so if what I'd ordered wasn't right, there was still time to order the right stuff.  And so popped over to Nick's this afternoon and...what I've ordered is actually right!  :party:  

 

Many thanks to @NickA for stepping in :)

 

Another example of BC at its finest.

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Well, the fretwire arrived, so out of excuses ;)

 

z7p3DQel.jpg

 

Out with the bits and pieces I use.  Ignore the radius block - I will be using the 12" one used for the fretboard.  Tang nibbler, triangular file to take the sharp edge off the fretslots, an improvised depth gauge to ensure no tangs bottom out, clippers to clip to length, a radius block to keep the shape while the bead of woodglue is setting and a mallet to whack them in with  :D  :

XcHcFvDl.jpg

 

I run a teeny bead of woodglue along the tangs and then whack one side, then the other and then the middle - that last one spreads the barbs under the fretboard surface and locks the fret in.  The glue squeeze-out is wiped away immediately with a damp cloth:

yIfrmEql.jpg

 

And then I clamp them with the radius block while I prepare the next one and move everything down one:

YfIrt1dl.jpg

 

15 still to go at time of typing  :)

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, funkle said:

Andy, I will also sort out the check of neck profile for you as well. I’ve been slack.  

No problem  :)

 

In the meantime...all frets are in :party:

 

aUFEIe8l.jpg

 

Next job - finding and fitting the maple veneer for the headstock (which is why there's no rush, @funkle  ;)  )

 

 

 

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29 minutes ago, NickA said:

Why veneer the headstock? The stripes are part and parcel of the construction and workmanship.

Isn't strength the main reason? 

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1 hour ago, NickA said:

Why veneer the headstock? The stripes are part and parcel of the construction and workmanship.

It was always part of the spec from when @funkle first asked about the neck.  He's made me a decal to use with it - it will work fine :)

 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, NickA said:

Why veneer the headstock? The stripes are part and parcel of the construction and workmanship.


I have never liked the look of multilaminate headstocks. One of the things I like about some Yamahas, for example, is that they cover it up. Same for many Warwicks. @LukeFRC it’s more about aesthetic than strength. 
 

 

Edited by funkle
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FYI, a friend on Talkbass has finished tracing out the Wal preamp circuit. It’s not yet clear if the photos I supplied gave enough detail for all the resistors to be correctly identified, but he was going to test it out anyway in software and see if how it acted looked reasonable or not. 
 

I hope to be able to provide accurate schematics at some point in the near future. 

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Bit late, but I did promise some recordings of my ACG Uber Finn with the DFM 5K preamp and MC Series pups.

It's the one on the left here >>

 

image.thumb.png.fae1103922eb9eba6570c2a724c6638e.png

 

Just for the nerds here, the bass has a mahogany body, with a very hard katalox top, a super tight bolt on neck joint, with threaded inserts and bolts, 5 piece red oak/bubinga neck and a pau ferro fingerboard.

The real reason for sharing the specs is that I really think that construction and technique play as big a part here as the preamp.

 

I did a few quick and dirty snippets of some BSSM lines, I think it's getting quite close.

The bass is recorded direct into GarageBand with no effects of processing whatsoever.

The pickups are pan 50/50, both filters are wound back a little, about 25% and the resonant peaks maxed out, the treble stack is out of the equation and I've dialed the passive tone off a bit, as it's a very bright bass and I was giving it some with my right hand.

 

Hope they're of some interest, and apologies for the sloppy playing!

 

Give It Away

 

 

Suck My Kiss

 

 

Funky Monks (Outro)

 

 

Cheers,

Eude

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Posted (edited)
55 minutes ago, eude said:

Bit late, but I did promise some recordings of my ACG Uber Finn with the DFM 5K preamp and MC Series pups.

It's the one on the left here >>

 

image.thumb.png.fae1103922eb9eba6570c2a724c6638e.png

 

Just for the nerds here, the bass has a mahogany body, with a very hard katalox top, a super tight bolt on neck joint, with threaded inserts and bolts, 5 piece red oak/bubinga neck and a pau ferro fingerboard.

The real reason for sharing the specs is that I really think that construction and technique play as big a part here as the preamp.

 

I did a few quick and dirty snippets of some BSSM lines, I think it's getting quite close.

The bass is recorded direct into GarageBand with no effects of processing whatsoever.

The pickups are pan 50/50, both filters are wound back a little, about 25% and the resonant peaks maxed out, the treble stack is out of the equation and I've dialed the passive tone off a bit, as it's a very bright bass and I was giving it some with my right hand.

 

Hope they're of some interest, and apologies for the sloppy playing!

 

Give It Away

 

 

Suck My Kiss

 

 

Funky Monks (Outro)

 

 

Cheers,

Eude

Its certainly a hell of a lot closer than any ACG clip I've heard before.  It's still a little too clean sounding and the mid strength isn't there, but its definitely Wal esque.  Add a bit of grit to that and it'll basically be there in a mix I'm sure!

 

Edit:  Mid Character isn't quite there, realising mid strength didn't make a whole lot of sense.

Edited by Kev
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1 hour ago, eude said:

Bit late, but I did promise some recordings of my ACG Uber Finn with the DFM 5K preamp and MC Series pups.

It's the one on the left here >>

 

image.thumb.png.fae1103922eb9eba6570c2a724c6638e.png

 

Just for the nerds here, the bass has a mahogany body, with a very hard katalox top, a super tight bolt on neck joint, with threaded inserts and bolts, 5 piece red oak/bubinga neck and a pau ferro fingerboard.

The real reason for sharing the specs is that I really think that construction and technique play as big a part here as the preamp.

 

I did a few quick and dirty snippets of some BSSM lines, I think it's getting quite close.

The bass is recorded direct into GarageBand with no effects of processing whatsoever.

The pickups are pan 50/50, both filters are wound back a little, about 25% and the resonant peaks maxed out, the treble stack is out of the equation and I've dialed the passive tone off a bit, as it's a very bright bass and I was giving it some with my right hand.

 

Hope they're of some interest, and apologies for the sloppy playing!

 

Give It Away

 

 

Suck My Kiss

 

 

Funky Monks (Outro)

 

 

Cheers,

Eude

Eude - if you have something to apply the eq curve Funkle was playing with on page 8 of this thread... how does that sound ? 

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Great sounding clips @eude!

 

Got to say, those clips sound solid, sounds to me like the ACG DFP and the ACG multicoil pickups can do a great job of the Wal BSSM sound. I can hear you hitting the bass harder and it sounds right for Flea's tone to me.

 

Cleaner than the Wal/Lusithand preamp too. It may not have quite the built in low mid push of the Wal, but I'd bet it is a good bit more flexible overall. 

 

The Uber spec of Alan's basses is expensive, but it sounds great. I think it's £3k upwards for that spec of bass? Might be a good deal for some folks....

 

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On 24/05/2022 at 17:12, Andyjr1515 said:

I'd taken a punt and ordered some fretwire based on looking closely at stock photos of various Wals but the timing of @NickA 's post was spot on.  I can always use fretwire and so if what I'd ordered wasn't right, there was still time to order the right stuff.  And so popped over to Nick's this afternoon and...what I've ordered is actually right!  :party:  

 

Many thanks to @NickA for stepping in :)

 

You sneaked out while consigned to the basement?!

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After sanding the headstock, it was time to cut the blank of maple constructional veneer (constructional veneer at around 2mm is quite a bit thicker than standard veneer, which is generally 0.6mm).  Whereas the standard veneer will bend round the curve running up to the nut without any problem, this thicker variety needs to be pre-bent, especially as it is being bent across the grain.

 

So out comes the bending iron I use for acoustic guitar sides:

XZkvMqUl.jpg

 

After a decent soaking, the nut end of the blank was carefully bent.  It has a tendency to spring back when drying and so, while still damp, it is clamped to the curve (below) and will stay there until fully dry.  I will be gluing on the plate when it is fully dry in the morning and by when that curve should be pretty much set.

jDYomvnl.jpg

 

 

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That's interesting!  I always assumed that matching headstocks were made by using a thicker piece of wood glued to headstock and then carved into a shape/curve etc.

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46 minutes ago, Kev said:

That's interesting!  I always assumed that matching headstocks were made by using a thicker piece of wood glued to headstock and then carved into a shape/curve etc.

Well, as the saying goes, "There are many ways of skinning a cat!"  (Although they all feel much the same to the cat...)

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On 27/05/2022 at 22:21, funkle said:

Great sounding clips @eude!

 

Got to say, those clips sound solid, sounds to me like the ACG DFP and the ACG multicoil pickups can do a great job of the Wal BSSM sound. I can hear you hitting the bass harder and it sounds right for Flea's tone to me.

 

Cleaner than the Wal/Lusithand preamp too. It may not have quite the built in low mid push of the Wal, but I'd bet it is a good bit more flexible overall. 

 

The Uber spec of Alan's basses is expensive, but it sounds great. I think it's £3k upwards for that spec of bass? Might be a good deal for some folks....

 

 

Thank you @funkle, I just remembered that I had promised to try and do something like this AGES ago :)

The Ubers are expensive, but still significantly cheaper than a new, or even an old Wal, with a significantly shorter wait time than ordering new ;) I do appreciate that it's a big investment regardless.

 

Cheers,

Eude

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On 27/05/2022 at 21:58, LukeFRC said:

Eude - if you have something to apply the eq curve Funkle was playing with on page 8 of this thread... how does that sound ? 

I will have a go at this when I can matey, although I was trying to get as close as I could just via the onboard preamp.

I should be able to do something along these lines on the Mac though, will let you know once I've had a go.

 

Cheers,

Eude

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On 27/05/2022 at 21:19, Kev said:

Its certainly a hell of a lot closer than any ACG clip I've heard before.  It's still a little too clean sounding and the mid strength isn't there, but its definitely Wal esque.  Add a bit of grit to that and it'll basically be there in a mix I'm sure!

 

Edit:  Mid Character isn't quite there, realising mid strength didn't make a whole lot of sense.

How I've been using this bass is exactly that, using a tone along these lines, then into a SansAmp BDDI v2 before hitting the amp, to add a bit of hair and I absolutely love it!

I do honestly think though, that a lot of that BSSM tone is in the right hand attack though.

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1 hour ago, eude said:

How I've been using this bass is exactly that, using a tone along these lines, then into a SansAmp BDDI v2 before hitting the amp, to add a bit of hair and I absolutely love it!

I do honestly think though, that a lot of that BSSM tone is in the right hand attack though.

are you suggesting that everyone's been focused on a Wal as the magic ingredient ... and the tone is all in his fingers? :o  :D 

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