Budget 5-6 string bass for downtuning (down to F#)

Discussion in 'Bass Guitar Discussion' started by MechyKola, Mar 22, 2016.

  1. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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    Yo people!!

    I am wanting a 5 or 6 string bass to tune down to F# for playing periphery etc.

    I don't have money, since i'm not even 18 yet and my parents can't tell the difference between basses and don't see the need for anything except a beginner's one :noplease:

    I obviously can't get a dingwall, but I can try to build one at school since I do engineering. I've only build a 6 string cigar box-ish guitar before.

    My budget is variable (but £400 tops) and i can wait, but i'm eyeing a b-55 with a blue flame maple top (blue is my fave colour so.... XD) for £125 and a washburn T25 with a flight case for £140. Both are 34" and i can't seem to find any 35"+ scale asses for under £400 - the closest being ltd 206 and ibby btbs.

    so what do you think - buy or build? and further, esp b-55 or washburn t25?

    EDIT: both basses are sold now, so it's just recommended new ones
     
  2. JPhoenix19

    JPhoenix19 Playing life by ear

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    If you were in the states I'd sell you my Peavey Grind 6
     
  3. Masoo2

    Masoo2 SS.org Regular

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    Could you get a Brice Defiant 53437 for that price?

    It would be a risk ordering from Rondo out of the states, but IMO it would be your best option for that low F#.
     
  4. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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    Yeah that's the issue - far too many options in the states aren't viable in the UK due to shipping etc. cost, unless I find others who are planning to buy from it (rondo & others) as well. I know nolly uses a low F# on a cherry tree 6 string with a 35" scale from his rig rundown
     
  5. High Plains Drifter

    High Plains Drifter SS.org Regular

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    Love the Ibanez SRC 6-string bass but I don't tune down to F# very often. It's designed to be tuned like a standard guitar. I just don't like that it gets a little flubby as you loosen the strings too much. Haven't switched out string gauge yet so that might change the floppiness idk. The super narrow neck width feels nice and it's a lot of fun to play. Keep in mind that it's a 30" scale length so it's not for every aspiring bass player. They sell for about $700 US.
     
  6. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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  7. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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    not really the thing i'm looking for but thanks for the suggestion!!:yesway:
     
  8. Masoo2

    Masoo2 SS.org Regular

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    I've heard great things about the Harley Bentons, would probably be a much safer purchase since you aren't in the US.

    As long as you get a decently thick string (180 maybe?) you should be fine.
     
  9. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Any bass could be tuned down to f#, but for it to sound good, you have to have one or more options that price it out of your range. You could get something "decent." I think, really, anything 35" is going to be a plus, anything with passable electronics is a plus. Anything with a good neck on it is a plus. I've been able to get my Dean Edge 6 down to F, and it was certainly better than other attempts before I got a Dingwall. The Edge is cheap, 35", stable neck, and the electronics are very good for the money. But I don't know if Dean's are readily available in the UK.
     
  10. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    35" will really help and there's more chance the big strings will taper before it reaches the tuner post, i'm sure there's something out there under £400, maybe 2nd hand.
    For low tunings make sure it has a modern top-loading slot-loading bridge otherwise the huge gauge strings will have problems fitting.
     
  11. Nlelith

    Nlelith SS.org Regular

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    I'd also suggest looking for used 35" Ibanez / Schecter or LTD, you might find a good deal.
     
  12. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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    Thanks guys!! The Dean edge is slightly out of my range but looks good - I might save up more if I'm n patient. Also in what price range do the good basses start?
     
  13. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    I'm super happy with my Dingwall. It cost me a little over $1200 USD. (In the UK, this is probably about 800 pounds sterling before taxes, or 2000 pounds sterling after taxes and duties :lol: ) The Brice FF model, I think is a little over half that price, but not quite as nice electronics. I nice Spector or similar would run nearly twice what the entry-level Dingwall cost me. A nice Dingwall is about three times what a cheap Dingwall costs, and a full-on custom from a bass luthier probably starts just above that price point.
     
  14. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    If you can get a longer scale do - but 35" is suitable. Remember, if somebody says 37" is good for E0 for example, they are also saying 35" is good for F, effectively.
    Of course more is more, and you dont want your open strings to begin sounding like muddier, up the neck playing, but just wanted to point that out.
    I find a string around 42-46lbs from Kalium strings to be the most important factor by far.
    Whatever you do, top loading bridge so the string isn't a problem.
     
  15. MechyKola

    MechyKola SS.org Regular

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    I get the rest but why top loading bridge?
     
  16. stevexc

    stevexc Laura Like Butter

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    It's due to how the strings are tapered. With a top-loading bridge the taper winds up on the saddle, with a string-thru bridge the full thickness of the string winds up on the saddle - if you can even get the string through the body.
     
  17. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    Indeed. With thick strings you get a much better result if they are tapered over the sadlde. Aside from fitting it through the body, simply trying to bend a .200 at 90 degrees over a short distance is a problem.
     
  18. ixlramp

    ixlramp SS.org Regular

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    Also a top-loading bridge where the string is threaded through a hole in the bridge, P-bass style, can be a problem, the hole may not be large enough, that's why i wrote 'slot-loading':
    [​IMG]
     
  19. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear Vendor

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    Yeah I had a bridge with a hole, had to drill that out. Good mention.
     
  20. GXPO

    GXPO SS.org Regular

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    If I were you, I'd just work all summer long and get the Dingwall. It's what you want at the end of the day and your friends will think you're the sh*t :lol:

    Good luck with whatever you decide!
     

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