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Zoot Passive Wal-a-like

Bass Culture

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I thought I'd leave starting this thread until there was some reasonable progress to show.  When Rautia, who'd supplied the pickups for my my first Wal-a-like, closed down, Mike and I spoke about him developing his own multi-coil pickups and I decided to commission a new bass which would be the guinea pig for these in-house designs.  The first bass had been paired with a Lusithand filter pre, but I decided I wanted this one to be different and that we'd go passive - Wal passive models still have their own distinctive Wal tone, after all.  At around the same time I returned the first bass to Mike to swap out the rather cheap monorail bridge units I'd supplied to him when it was built for some more substantial Hipshot items.  During the course of this work it became apparent that one of the original Rautia pickups had developed a problem and that they would need to be changed, so he was now making two pairs of pickups for me.  This was to be the start of an extensive period of research which involved Mike investigating all aspects of the design, specification and topography of the Wal originals, which has only now culminated in him finally being able to start winding his own pickups - with the help of a new coil winder he's just invested in.


Specs for the new bass are:


Zoot Boudica body shape

Paulownia body with wenge top and back - wax & oil finish

Multi-laminate neck of roasted maple and mahogany with maple and wenge stringers. Soft V profile

32" scale with 38mm nut.

18mm string spacing at bridge

2 x new Zoot multicoil pickups

V/T and series/parallel switch per pickup

Zoot solid brass bridge

Hipshot ultralite tuners and string retainer


Here's some progress pictures:

Zoot Passive Wal-alike full body Zoot Passive Wal-alike body & fretboard Zoot Passive Wal-alike - progress - body closeup Zoot Passive Wal-alike - neck progress Zoot Passive Wal-alike - headstock progress Zoot Passive Wal-alike - body, knobs & bridge Zoot Passive Wal-alike - back of headstock progress Zoot Passive Wal-alike Feb 23 Zoot Passive Wal-alike Feb 23 - back


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51 minutes ago, bloke_zero said:

Looks amazing! Soft V? Is that like \_/ with a kind of flat section? It's hard to see from the pictures.

More like a V where the pointy bit is less pointy, with a softer/gentler curve, but still provides a definite reference point for your thumb.

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18 hours ago, benh said:

Looks incredible. That body shape is fab

Yes, the new Zoot Boudica shape seems to be a favourite for my "Wal-a-like" builds. Here's another one going through the workshop, and the customer asked for blue over Bird's-eye with a 34" scale, similar to the one Justin Chancellor has in the band Tool.


Edited by Cosmicrain
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Posted (edited)

Latest batch of update photos from Mike, and time to start getting proper excited now, I think! 😊

MN0001 WhatsApp Image 2024-03-01 at 16.32.06_d6fa958a WhatsApp Image 2024-03-01 at 16.31.47_62360c2f WhatsApp Image 2024-03-01 at 16.31.25_fffed95b WhatsApp Image 2024-03-01 at 16.32.30_79ab99d9


Scheduled to pick up next weekend at present.  Mike's been testing the various pickup connections at each stage of assembly, but has not so far been able to sound test them.  I can't wait to hear them.  He's a true artist and I've no doubt at all they'll sound every bit as good as they and the bass looks.

Edited by Bass Culture
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I love it! Some lovely attention to detail there, and I love how the Boudica shape has evolved. The contouring on the front and back is beautiful! 


I like the bridge design too, with the varying saddle lengths. 

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15 hours ago, JPJ said:

Oof 😍 what a beauty! Looking forward to hearing some sound clips

I think Mike wants to record some vid and sound samples when I collect it, so I'll post a link if we get that sorted.


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