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 Post subject: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 1:52 am 
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Joined: Tue May 11, 2010 1:23 am
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A no-brainer if we're talking about bathing suits of course, but in this context...

I've encountered conflicting reports here & there about whether the newer 4003's have a 1-piece or 2-piece neck. Mine, acquired mere weeks ago, is a 2009, serial #0919556(mglo), & it certainly _looks_ like the neck is one piece (impressive, given that it's 44" long). I have a couple Taylor acoustics--a 6-string & a 12. The 6 is the older 1-piece neck style (though not of course thru-body), & the 12 a 2004 w/ the 2-piece neck; & the word there is that the 2-piece is actually stronger. SO...

Anybody know what ol' #0919556 would be? And what are the pro-cons, aside from the factory being able to get more out of a chunk of maple, re 1-piece vs. 2?

***As so many have stated, this _is_ a great forum. And I appreciate the effort on the part of the vets to keep things civilized & respectful. The opposite, web-wide, is really getting to be a drag.***


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 2:06 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 05, 2007 12:33 am
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Location: Denver
You serial number comes up as the 19th week of 2009. It is certainly not out of the question for a one-piece to come out of the factory even after the feature was introduced, in those first weeks. It could have been the determination of someone at RIC like Ben Hall that the piece of wood making up your neck was just fine and didn't need a two-piece construction method, etc. It's not uncommon to see sporadic reverts to the older method around the time RIC introduces a new feature. My 4003 AFG does not have walnut wings on its headstock even though it was made in 2007, well after the feature was introduced. A small run of basses were done that way, and it pairs really well with the AFG finish by making the basses look more like aged 4003s. I think that was the logic behind the decision.

In any case, there can always be exceptions, but as far as probability goes any brand new 4003 will now feature a two-piece neck and so should >95% of those made after April of 2009. My January of 2009 Mapleglo 4003 is most definitely one-piece, and I really love it, because that larger one-piece neck gives this bass a unique, "thick" sound that is really good for funk and rock tracks. So perhaps you got a unique instrument--definitely cool. I hope you are really enjoying your bass. If you are not happy with it because you didn't get a two-piece neck you can always sell it and buy a new one, as there are several good deals on new 4003s right now.

You asked about pros and cons. In most cases a laminated neck will have more strength than an unlaminated one. However I've heard of exceptions to this rule, such as when too many laminations are done and the neck becomes extremely labile. 4001s used to feature a three-piece neck, so they were made with laminated necks as well. Another feature of laminated necks (so I am told) is that they tend to distribute tension more evenly across the complex of wood strips. However, you've got to remember that if it ain't broke you don't fix it. I have three 4003s and a 4001, with one-piece construction on the 4003s and three-piece on the 4001. They're all set up perfectly for me, so even though I think two-piece necks are a good idea, my basses aren't going anywhere. In a way I am happy because the tone of my basses is going to become a little more unique, especially my 2009 Mapleglo with its thicker neck.

Here is what a two-piece neck looks like:

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c130/ ... urple1.jpg


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 2:21 am 
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OMG, 2-piece _lengthwise_ we're talking! (Thanks for the photo, Cassius). With my confessed Taylor orientation, I was thinking of 2-piece as headstock lammed to neck proper. Living & learning here.

My 4003 is definitely a 1'er, in that case, & I couldn't be happier.

Cassius, if you're still there: What do you pro's recommend for a good starter bass course? I've been playing git for 20 yrs, but I have a lot of bad habits. And with this new 4003 I want to do things right. (Full disclosure: I don't read music, but can deal w/ tabs if there's no time limit.)


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 4:47 am 
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Well I don't think my opinion on teaching bass is worth any more than anyone else's, however I was just thinking today about how the Miles Davis album Kind of Blue was a very transparent portal for me into the world of applied music theory and improvisation. The concepts in the album are simple to grasp but the best part is that they translate into high-level musicality. Maybe you should sit down with that album and some other records from the bop era and think about what Paul Chambers, the bassist, is doing and why. You don't need to read music but you do need to know your scales and modes and how the fit certain chords, and you need to know how to swing.

Here's a good first assignment for anybody who hasn't done it yet: figure out what is going on harmonically in the very simple, very groovy opening track, "So What", in comparison to the harmonic layout of the next track, "Freddie Freeloader". Harmonically speaking (chord structure) these songs are quite different, especially noticeable by breaking them down into roman numerals instead of alphabetical chord names. And while you are doing this see if you can write your own bass lines to match up with the music just like Paul Chambers did.

Just my two cents.


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Sun Jun 20, 2010 6:28 pm 
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Seeing as I get 50 Euros an hour giving that kind of advice for saxophone, I'd say 2 cents is selling yourself a tad short! :)


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:14 am 
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And fine advice it is. Thanks, Cassius. The fact that you've cited one of my favorite jazz albums signals I should follow you to the letter.

I'm intrigued by the roman numeral thing. Hidden messages about the Apocalypse, maybe? I'll just have to see for myself.


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:31 am 
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Breaking stuff down into Roman numerals makes it easier to compare harmonic structure. There are lots of songs with the same harmonic structure but written in different keys. So thinking in terms of the structure instead of in terms of the key makes it easier to compare how songs are defined.


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:23 pm 
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Makes sense. I'll cue up 'So What' as soon as what passes for the real world out here on gives me a moment's peace.


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 Post subject: Re: 1-Piece or 2?
 Post Posted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:29 pm 
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Quote:

Anybody know what ol' #0919556 would be? And what are the pro-cons, aside from the factory being able to get more out of a chunk of maple, re 1-piece vs. 2?


To answer your question, the two piece neck adds more stability. The two pieces are flipped and glued up, given us a quartersawn neck. One piece counteracts the other if it wants to move. However, a one piece neck might totally warp since the entire piece has the same moisture content and will react to the environment the same way.

Your serial # is right at the beginning of the two piece shift, so it's one of the last one piece necks we made...


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