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Username: somatic

Post Number: 32
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Monday, May 23, 2005 - 3:49 am:   Edit Post

Howdy all,

Does anyone have a bass with this setup, either with a 4 banger BEAD, or a 5 or 6? Being blessed with small hands means I'd be curious if this is a good sounding option, so I could maybe get a 5er strung BEADG with tight spacing at the bridge.

With good electronics, strings and a sound design to the instrument, my gut hunch is it won't be a problem. After all my 30.75's sound fantastic (EADG) no matter what the 34" mafia say. I find they're also so much easier on my hands/wrists and much more fun to play than 34" instruments.

Very interested to hear of experiences with basses strung like this, and/or opinions on the potential of the project.
I'm predominantly a fingerstyle player, with some flatpick, and play with a soft touch.

(Message edited by somatic on May 23, 2005)
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 1779
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Monday, May 23, 2005 - 5:27 am:   Edit Post

As I recall, there are a number of owners in the group with 32" 5 and 6 strings; and in previous discussions those owners reported no problems with the B string on a 32" scale Alembic.
Username: exploiterplayer

Post Number: 75
Registered: 12-2002
Posted on Monday, May 23, 2005 - 7:58 am:   Edit Post

I use drop "D" tuning a lot on my 32" scale Exploiter with no problems at all.
I was a firm believer in the 34" myth until I found this instrument. I think if you have the proper set up and high quality strings with decent tension..... a 32" is just as good as a 34".
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 923
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Monday, May 23, 2005 - 8:15 am:   Edit Post

I have one. I heartily recommend that you go with a high-sustain configuration if you order one up. That is, don't skimp on the neck woods. I have purpleheart in the neck of mine and it is very full and smooth. I don't think an all-maple neck would work as well.

Strings will matter a lot in this configuration as well. I think many of the complaints about performance on shorter scales come from using too light strings.

I got mine on the used market, and have considered having another made. I was thinking I might go 33", but I doubt there is too much difference in feel or tone, especially for a light-touch fingerstyle player. There are two reasons for going to the shorter scale, reach to the first fret, and fret-to-fret spacing. Reach to the first fret can be greatly affected by the body style. If you look at the Balance K or Rogue shapes, the long upper horn brings the nut closer to your body. This will get you the more comfortable reach without shortening the scale. If you need the fret-to-fret spacing, then only the scale change will do that.

Best of luck in making your decision!
Username: apdavis

Post Number: 37
Registered: 5-2004
Posted on Monday, May 23, 2005 - 8:40 am:   Edit Post

I own two 32" fiver's that I am very happy with, if I was having another built, the only change I might look into is reversing the order of the peg head allowing the B and the E on the top and A,D& G. on the bottom. Many artists think that this allows for better overall string performance for the B due to the peg being further from the nut. Never having played one I can't tell you for certain.
Senior Member
Username: flaxattack

Post Number: 503
Registered: 4-2004
Posted on Thursday, May 26, 2005 - 4:24 pm:   Edit Post

will let ya know in two weeks
the wolf is 32 scale 5 string
and its almost ready
Advanced Member
Username: dannobasso

Post Number: 259
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Thursday, May 26, 2005 - 7:25 pm:   Edit Post

I have in Alembic one 7 in 32", three 6's in 32, one 5 in 32, and one 4 in 32, 1 short scale 4, two 5's in 34, one 4 in 34
Non Alembic one 4 in 32 and three 4's in 34. That said, I find the B to be more substantial with a wider neck at the nut. (jazz spacing as ordered) Set up is crucial as well as your technique. I use 34's live with my band but I prefer 32's for ease of playing. When I switch up at home I can fly quite a bit faster. Then switch to the SC forgeddaboudit! I love the Distillate 5 in 32 and my Spoiler 6 in 32 wide spacing. The B's are quite pronounced. I usually use a 128.
Username: hardy

Post Number: 2
Registered: 5-2005
Posted on Friday, May 27, 2005 - 4:08 am:   Edit Post

I have played 32" scale basses for the past 15 years because of medical issues with my hands (ie: Tendonitis)... I ordered a Warwick 5 string Corvette FNA bass and HATED it! the feel of it anyway! The neck felt like I was playing a tree trunk. Sustain was borderline good. I sold it a month later. I had a custom bass made to my spec from dpcustom.com (I was trying to get an Alembic without paying for an Alembic, but it wasn't an Alembic if you know what I mean)
I agree with one of the other listings that its better to have a few cherry or ebony laminations in the neck as this will really increase sustain. The B cuts thru just fine to the point where I can slap it hard just like the other strings. (the Lane Poor pickups help too on that)I see no real difference between the 2 scales 32 & 34. except the 32's more comfortable to play. I also have small hand and stubby fingers... thats my 2 cents. - Hardy Ca$h
Username: mica

Post Number: 2463
Registered: 6-2000
Posted on Friday, May 27, 2005 - 12:47 pm:   Edit Post

You could try throwing a set od BEAD strings on your current short scale for testing purposes. Even though the slots won't be perfect, you will get an idea if the feel of a short scale B string works for you. Some players cannot adjust to the lower tension, find it too distracting.

The only problem I can forsee is finding short scale B strings.

Ebony is a great choice for sustain, but I'm not sure I concur about Cherry. Dense as it is, it seems to suck some highs and lows even as a body wood. This is from my personal experience on my bass, which has a Cherry body and rather "thunky" sounding, even with a Kingwood top and Maple/Purpleheart neck. Rory, you'll be glad to know I finally put new string on it!
Username: trekster

Post Number: 32
Registered: 7-2004
Posted on Tuesday, May 31, 2005 - 12:37 pm:   Edit Post

ok, totally off subject...Mica, got any pics of your personal bass, or any that sport kingwood?

Username: davehouck

Post Number: 1842
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Tuesday, May 31, 2005 - 3:23 pm:   Edit Post

Here it is!
Username: somatic

Post Number: 34
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, June 03, 2005 - 3:43 am:   Edit Post

Hi Guys,

Thanks for all the feedback. Looks like a 32" 5 string may be in the works in the near future.
I tried Mica's suggestion of stringing BEAD on a shorter scale by throwing a B on a cheapo 32" I have laying about. Felt fine.

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