By Natalie Wallis. Electric Bass Guitar. Published at Friday, August 31st, 2018 - 07:02:06 AM.
Remember, on a top mounted adjustment turn your allen wrench clockwise to tighten the neck and straighten it, or counter clockwise to loosen it and curve the neck. On heel adjustments its the exact opposite! The more curved the neck the higher the strings will be from the fingerboard, the straighter the neck the closer. On a fretless neck you want the action to be as low as possible to allow for the pleasant buzzy "Mmmwah" sound. It is possible to set the action too low in which the "mmmahh" will be squelched. A good indication of where your neck is at is either a buzz at the first 5 frets which indicates a neck that is too straight or a buzz at the 7th fret and up which indicates a neck that is too curved. Holding the bass at eye level against a strong light and looking at the very edge of the fingerboard will indicate the status of the neck curvature. You want to set your neck as straight as possible until you get buzzes on or about the 5th fret or lower, then back the neck off with quarter turns until the buzzes go away.
Now that your bass is physically together lets string her up! Whatever your bass string of choice is, installing them properly will ensure good tension, a snug fit and long lasting strings. incorrect instillation will result in buzzes, dead spots and dollars wasted from broken strings. When you unwrap the strings they will be pre-coiled and ready to go. You will need a pair of wire cutters and a tuner. First take the G string and run the very tip through the bridge's G string slot, up past the saddle, under the string tree and past the tuning post.
Below is a diagram showing how a standard P-Bass split coil pickup is wired as hum-canceling pickup. The pickups are wired in series. (For another example as having them wired in parallel, check out pickup_parallel_wiring. Notice that the split coils are actually out of phase here. It does not matter in this case that the coils are out-of-phase, since there are no other pickups here. If the coils are wired in-phase, then it becomes a single coil type of wiring, and you can expect to hear hum when your are near electrical fields. If you wish to add a J-Bass pickup in the bridge position, you will likely need to wire the P-Bass as a single coil, unless you thought ahead to by a split coil Jazz Bass pickup, as mentioned earlier.
After getting the color right where I like it, it's time to seal the body with a finish. Like stated earlier we will be using a very easy but effective gun stock finish called Tru-Oil. Just like the stain make sure you find a well ventilated and climate controlled area and clean it of any debris. To cut down on spots and fingerprints find an old wire hanger or shoelace and hang the body up at just about eye level. Take an old rag pour a small amount of finish and gently rub the finish in small circles, making sure to spread the amount of finish as far as possible (a little goes a long way). I find it easier to do one side at a time to help prevent smudges. After each coat, allow to dry for about an hour and buff lightly (as not to remove previous coats) between coats. I find about 10 to 15 coats is enough to build a nice luster and provide a nice hard surface, but going to about 20 to 25 will be more than enough. A final buffing with steel wool will give the finish a dull shine and a smooth touch. Give about 24 to 48 hours to completely cure the finish.
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