Shorter scale bass?

Discussion in 'Bass Area; The Bottom Line' started by Nuclearfishin, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. Nuclearfishin

    Nuclearfishin Supporting Member

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    What's a good short(er) scale bass, or is there even a such thing? I'm a guitar player but my daughter who's been playing bass awhile just made jazz band at school. Right now she's playing my beater 5-string which is 34" scale length. I'd like to get her an instrument of her own in a shorter scale length if possible. What do all you bass players recommend for entry-mid level player in a shorter scale? I used to have an old Gibson EB-2 which seemed like a shorter scale but I'm not certain.

    Cheers!
     
  2. J.T.

    J.T. Supporting Member

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  3. Eric F

    Eric F Member

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    The EB-2 is a 30" scale, but feels a bit longer than that because of the shape of the body and the way it hangs on a strap.

    How old is your daughter?

    A short scale instrument might be a good call if she's young (10 or less), but at some point she should become familiar with the feel of a 34" scale bass if it's a serious undertaking for her.
     
  4. Thor

    Thor Member

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    How much you looking to spend? Fender has a decent short-scale offering. Alembic is also known for some pretty sweet short scales as well...
     
  5. michael30

    michael30 Gold Supporting Member

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    Fender Mustang. Second-hand US-made.
     
  6. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    A mustang bass. Had one - would be perfect for smaller bodies and hands.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. dantedayjob

    dantedayjob Member

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    Mustang's good... some of the various Hofner style basses are cool- my buddy had a Rogue Hofner style that he paid little of nothing for and it plays and sounds really cool... Gretsch has some nice short scale basses too, I have one of those...

    [​IMG]
     
  8. cob666

    cob666 Member

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    I think Fender Musicmaster, Mustang and Bronco are pretty much the same guitar. I played bass in a couple of bands in high school and used a Musicmaster bass. It had a really nice sound and was quite easy to play due to the shorter scale.
     
  9. TedintheShed

    TedintheShed Member

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    Stu Hamm Urge Bass, made by fender, is 32" scale.
     
  10. Robert1950

    Robert1950 Member

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    The Squier Bronco Bass is $150.
     
  11. 57special

    57special Silver Supporting Member

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    another vote for a used musicmaster. Great tone, easy to play, inexpensive.
     
  12. GA19RVT

    GA19RVT Member

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    Those new/old Kays:

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  13. GA19RVT

    GA19RVT Member

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    The original Urge was 32. The ones they make now are full-scale.
     
  14. Jahn

    Jahn Listens to Johnny Marr, plays like John Denver Supporting Member

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    I'd recommend the Guild Starfire Bass as the best shortscale bass I've tried, but the body is ES-335 sized, which might be too big on her. On the other hand, who am I to presume, she might be six foot one!
     
  15. Dave Klausner

    Dave Klausner Member

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    My wife has small hands, and I got her an Epiphone Allen Woody. Very cool bass that I get some use out of myself. If she had been looking at a high end instrument, we would certainly have checked out the Birdsong basses.

    http://www.birdsongguitars.com/
     
  16. The Golden Boy

    The Golden Boy Member

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    Those intrigue me as well...

    Also the Jack Casady...
     
  17. Nuclearfishin

    Nuclearfishin Supporting Member

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    Great information fellas, thanks! My daughter is 12 (7th grade) and she will presumably play the instrument at least through high school. She's 5'2" but has small hands (as do I) so I figured shorter scale is the way to go. As a classical player there's a big difference between 660mm and 650mm, so 4" on a bass is huge. Is there any reason why she should have to switch to a longer scale when she's older? Do the shorter scales compare with 34" scale on tone?
     
  18. michael30

    michael30 Gold Supporting Member

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    The only reason would be that there is a larger variety of 34" scale basses available if she becomes afflicted with G.A.S.

    I'm 50 and I play short-scale basses. I've owned a lot of different long-scale basses but I prefer the sound of a short-scale. It depends on what type of music she'll be playing.
     
  19. Aslan

    Aslan Supporting Member

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    I own a Gibson SG reissue bass and it plays and sounds very nice, light weight and easy to wear on a strap. Gibson redesigned the front pickup so it's more balanced than the ones from the 60's.
     
  20. markw1980

    markw1980 Supporting Member

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    I picked up a Fender Musicmaster bass from the 70s a few weeks ago and couldn't be happier. I have been playing bass for a long time and just came back to it, and I really like the feel of the short scale.
     

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