Project Basses

Starting a new thread here for anyone that wants to post their bass construction projects - new builds, mods, whatever you’re tinkering with. There are some true badasses in these threads with this stuff - very inspiring - so much so, that I’ve taken on a beginner project myself:

So I saw this used Ibanez on Craigslist for $50, when I got there, this poor bass looked like it was way past it’s heyday, maybe had a beer or two spilled on it and not wiped up right away, then probably sat in a basement for a very long time. But plucking the dusty, rusted strings, it still worked! I paid the seller, who then informed me that the giant amp that a dog had chewed almost the entire tolex on, and didn’t even really work came with it, even though I didn’t want it (wasn’t even a bass amp). He probably just didn’t want to haul it to the junkyard himself. Ahh, the characters on Craigslist!

But I digress. So here’s my new toy, that I had zero qualms about taking apart entirely, just to see how it’s all put together. What I’ll do with it, I don’t know yet. But in the end, there’s actually not too much to a bass, lucky for me. No getting your fingers caught on something, no getting electrocuted. My kind of project :smile: Now, to bust out some power tools :wrench::gear::goggles:


Cool! Doesn’t look that bad, judging from the pics… I mean, some people pay a lot of money to get their basses vintage-ified, creating the appearance like they have had a hard (rewarding?) life in rock’n’roll :grin:


Yeah, once I wiped the whole bass down a few times, she really shined !

I think I may go for a vintage-y look for this bass. Mine won’t be a high dollar job. Just some sandpaper, and some experimentation - pretty low budget :laughing:


This is a pretty good idea, @Vik! :open_mouth:

Pay only $50 for a bass (which doesn’t look too bad to start with), and then take it apart, learn something about how it’s put together, how it works, etc. etc.

Maybe try to upgrade the pups or the bridge? And if anything goes wrong, it’s not too much cash down the drain. Sounds like a win-win situation to me! :+1:

All best and good luck with your project, Joe


aaah good thread !

My green P is a little bit modified :

  • custom color that I painted myself (originaly it was trans white over ash body)
  • pickup changed to a DiMarzio DP122 (I chose this one because it’s the pickup that was used on the first BC Rich Mockingbird basses :grin: )
  • some electronic mods but I plan to modify the circuitry again
  • Hi-mass bridge but I’m not sure at all I will keep it, I’m still in the testing period

Also I have a bass project currently : an ultra short scale (25,5") that I plan to make using guitar parts. I have an old japanese Ibanez Sabre cadaver, exactly the same model as this one :


but mine is in VERY VERY VERY bad condition. there is a huge crack in the mahogany body. I started to reshape a bit the body and I have a lot of wood work to resurect it. Also I’m trying to sell some parts (including the expensive Gotoh Floyd Rose bridge) to buy some bass parts for it.

Not sure what I will do exactly (pickup configuration, bridge …) but I don’t plan to spend much money for this project. It’s more for fun than anything. I may keep it simple. I’d like to have a playable and funny shred-machine.

Also currently I’m thinking about getting another P, I have several ideas and I’m not sure at all what I will do at this point. One of the idea would be a P with two 51-style pickups or two small rail humbuckers (Strat/P51 sizing), this could be fun. This could start from a P-style kit, nothing impossible with some routing. Not sure at this point, but I’m thinking about it !

Another thing I’d like to build from A to Z would be a fretless cigar box bass. I have some scrap wood here …


These are great!

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Y’all are wonderful and crazy. Love this forum and this thread. You’re all getting all Dr. Frankenstein on it. It’s great.


I promised myself (and my wife) that I wouldn’t be buying any more basses until at least after completing the course. But you just never know when a once-in-a-lifetime bargain will pop up on Gumtree (like Craigslist). It probably doesn’t help that I’m now trawling through all the cheap basses in a 50 mile radius.

You lot are a terrible influence. I love it.