This homemade VIKster bass is designed to fit in a standard electric guitar gig bag. Your Blog entry on Tuesday October 6, 2009 featuring John Backlund Design guitars (I went to his web site) inspired the design which I altered with violin bass styled cutouts (I have a lefty Rogue Beatle Bass).Doug, this is fantastic. I like your "no rules" approach to luthiery. It's certainly a unique looking instrument. This is one of the things that fascinate me about self-built guitars and basses. They are created by the individual usually for themselves and so you can see some very interesting ideas. Mass-produced guitars do not cater for the individual, and so the designs tend towards being very "safe" and the tried and tested.
It is lighter than an electric guitar, very comfortable to play, and I’m very pleased with the tone. I’m primarily a guitar player, so I play the bass with a pick so the closer string spacing is not a problem since the strings are still spaced wider than a standard acoustic guitar.
I built this bass using the “no rules” techniques I learned from building cigar box guitars (www.cigarboxnation.com). The scale length, 28.25,” is less than a short scale bass and has standard EADG tuning. I used Fender short scale electric bass strings. Neck is poplar, fretboard is oak, and a 1/2” x 1/8” steel bar runs the length of the neck. Body is from a 2 x 8 fir scrap, the cotter pin topped bridge is from a mahogany scrap (I’m still using the wood left over from each of my two sons’ Eagle Scout projects!). The string guide is Oak from a piece of flooring. Pickguard is 1/8” plywood with batik fabric covering. The tail piece is aluminum. Tuners are one half of a Ping Mandolin set. Bass Humbucker is EMG Select from Stew Mac. I did all the woodburning on the body and neck as well as the macramé for the strap.
Also great to see a unique left-handed instrument. A while back I was trying to feature at least one interesting left-handed guitar or bass on this blog every week, but I really was having trouble finding them. I hate to think what it must be like to be a left-handed player who is severely limited by what the off-the-peg brands have to offer.
G L Wilson
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