Behringer Bass Refurb: Part II

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Here’s the Behringer 4-string bass I bought for $75 USD and posted about here.

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Novice bass tech was unclear on the string tree concept. Original owner probably stripped the truss rod and mis-strung the treble strings at the same time. Amateur luthiers, bah.

It sounded nice but the truss rod hex adjuster was non-op. I ordered a Canadian maple Kmise replacement J-style neck from China via eBay for $36 USD, free shipping.
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It took three weeks and arrived in a dented box. To my neighbor’s house. Oh, well. It proved to be unhurt and exactly as pictured on line when I finally got it. Simply beautiful.

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I first learned on narrow neck Ibanez basses so the Kmise replacement is Jazz bass style with the narrower nut.

How the manufacturers can make money by buying Canadian maple wood; shipping it to China for shaping; shipping it to Flushing, New York; and then shipping it to me in California, I do not know. Volume? Low overhead? Slave labor?

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Nice, though decorative only, ‘skunk stripe’ looks cool.

But it surely does look pretty, straight, and smooth, frets included.
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You can see how much more asthetic the Kmise headstock is compared to Behringer’s blobby design-though it played and sounded OK.

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Those are schmeers, not scratches, condition is near new.

I followed the original holes when I drilled the neck for the bolts* so the off center position came from the factory.

The new neck’s fit is 100% perfect in the neck pocket and I torqued the life out of the Phillips head screws so I expect it to vibrate nicely.
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Tuner holes come a bit undersized, requiring some Dremel Moto-tool hogging out. I made them a bit oval but nobody except me will ever know. Well, and you now.


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Positioning the tuners, I tapped a knitting needle in to mark the new holes.
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Here’s everything I saved to put back on the new neck.

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Still unsure about where to drill the hole for the string tree. Maybe it won’t be necessary with the narrow J neck?

I have a genuine Fender P-bass strung with a set of fabulous Thomastik-Infeld (TI) Jazz Bass flatwound strings- low tension, super smooth and quiet (and expensive!).

So for this build I bought D’Addario XL regular light Nickel Wound roundwound strings, bright but also noisy-with my primitive playing anyway.
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The strings should accentuate the bright maple neck so I expect this bass to be ringing, sustaining, forceful and melodic with piano like tones.
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This sound will match my style of playing, which is not very bass-like at all. Since I’m not in a band and don’t jam with anybody, it’s just me and my Roland Cube’s drum track.
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I don’t really play bass, more like melody, solo, shred, lead bass. I basically noodle up and down the neck playing fake blues and rock using minor, major, pentatonic and blues scales.

I just let my fingers rip with whatever intervals or rhythms suits my poor damaged ears. It’s not normal bass but it is my best therapy these days. I can’t wait to finish it to hear what it sounds like.

*Fender style guitar and bass necks are always called ‘bolt-on’. Why, I don’t know. Because the neck is always fastened to the body with wood screws. Did Leo Fender’s first ax use actual bolts? Tradition? It’s a mystery.

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3 thoughts on “Behringer Bass Refurb: Part II

  1. Pingback: Behringer Bass Part III: Machine Heads Reinstalled | todgermanica.com

  2. Pingback: New Kmise Maple/maple Neck on an Old Behringer Bass Body | todgermanica.com

  3. Pingback: DIY Electric Bass Humbusting | todgermanica.com

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