D F# A F D…

Bummer of bummers, the bass arrived on Monday with a broken tuning peg. It being of Chinese extraction, replacements were hard to come by, but ultimately Trade Up was able to locate a semi-compatible piece among their collection of scavenged parts, so all was well and I’ve got a shiny brass peg on my D string. A replacement should be in the mail from musiclandcentral sometime soon. Had to make a few additional purchases, but I am close to being kitted:

Jay Turser JTB3 Bass : $299
Roland Cube 30 Bass Amp : $225
Gretsch Guitar Strap : $29
ULTRA Guitar Stand : $20
10′ Cable : $6
Pick : $0.25

Not too bad. I’d like to restring it with Thomastic-Infeld Jazz Flats, but haven’t found a shop in town that carries them yet. Other than that, and a case, I’m pretty good. Buying the Cube 30 will probably save me a bit of money that I’d have otherwise been tempted to spend on pedals — it has some built in effects, like an an octaver, chorus, flanger, wah, reverb, etc., as well as some nicely modeled tube amps o’ the past. Shouldn’t be mucking with it at this juncture, I know, but it’s fun.

Right now I’m just working on familiarizing myself with the fretboard… a fretted short-scale is a definite change from a 7/8ths upright, but I think I’m getting there. Slowly rebuilding calluses on the fingers of my left hand, and playing a lot of scales. Woo hoo for arpeggios. I’ll worry about technique once I’m not overshooting third position. There seems to be a fair bit of buzz, which might well be down to my own incompetence, or to needing a bit more clearance, but I’m waiting to have it professionally set-up until I receive the replacement tuning machine and locate some Jazz Flats.

3 thoughts on “D F# A F D…

  1. Previous Total : $579.25
    Thomastik-Infeld Jazz Flats : $62.00
    Setup by The Twelfth Fret : $50.00
    Collapsible music stand (estate sale) : $10.00

    Still don’t have a case. Harumph.

  2. Dear Casual,

    I picked up a JTB3 myself recently, and it’s a big hit with me & all who’ve heard it. I normally play a massive 1964 Burns Bison which weighs a ton & was looking for a lighter alternative. Had been saving my pennies to get a new Hofner Club bass but they’re now approaching $2K. Saw the Turser on eBay and thought it so convincingly ’60s/German-looking it would be worth a shot for $275. I used to have a blonde Hofner “Superbeatle” 500/1 and frankly this sounds exactly the same and feels better! Don’t know if the tuners will stand the test of time, but everything thus far has been a pleasure.

    Anyway, the reason I write: I spent weeks in the shops and online trying to dig up a case to fit its somewhat retro dimensions. Good luck, because no one is really catering to such an odd duck.

    I can’t remember how I ferreted it out of the ether but I wound up buying a Tribal Planet GX40B gigbag/case from the UK. Expensive but awesome…. Pretty much the best “flightbag” in the business. Probably as indestructible as any case, with rigid sidewalls, neck block, mega padding and solid molded outer pockets that act as further crash barriers.
    The postage was $45 but it arrived in less than 36 hours! If you consider it, buy from the “Really Useful Music Company” because the only other dealers charge over $60 for postage. Either way, you’ll either luck out and find something vintage to fit the bill or pay well over $100 for a new hardshell that would accomodate its quirkiness.

    Just thought I’d share my tale of shopping bliss with you.

    By the way, have you tried the black nylon tapewound strings? I’ve sworn by them for years now, definitely the closest thing to the sound of a double bass. I use either LaBella or GHS, which usually can be had for around $25-$30. Rotosound makes nice ones called “Trubass”, though I think the low E is a bit too heavy at .115. Avoid Fender tapewounds as they’re nothing but piss-poor roundwounds hiding under a flimsy nylon wrap!

    Anyway, best of luck and do have fun….

    Keith in Mpls.

  3. Hey, thanks Keith! Glad to hear that there’s a case out there somewhere to accommodate the 3’s unconventional dimensions. For the nonce I’m holding out hope for a full-on hardshell, vintage or otherwise, but if necessity requires it, the GX40B it shall be. Much obliged for the recommendation.

    Neophyte though I am, I’m well-pleased with the bass so far, and the folks at the shops I’ve taken it to have been quite impressed as well. One of them’s looking into carrying some Tursers (we have no local distributor), so impressed were they with the quality:price of this Chinese-manufactured bass.

    Haven’t tried tapewounds yet, no … I’ve only had it for a couple o’ weeks 🙂 I did consider stringing it with LaBellas or Rotosounds, but ultimately went with T-I… digging through forums and reviews, I found a fair diversity of opinion about the respective merits of different nylon tapewounds, but it seems like almost everyone who’s used them loves the T-I Flats. They’re awesomely smooth… lower-tension than I was used to, so I’m getting acquainted with really low action now. Given that T-I flats are supposed to have at least a 2-3 year life, it may be quite a while before I swap them for tapewounds, but I’m certainly interested in giving them a shot.

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