vViper history

The first vViper bass


This bass has a Maple neck and a Swamp Ash body w/Maple top.  Badass bridge and Schaller tuners.


Using a surplus 5-string pickup, I devised the 'wiper' arm to be able to move the pickup back and forth and built the bass around this feature.  Moving the pickup all the way to the front will approximate a typical P-bass position, the middle will have more of a MusicMan character while the rear position is close to the bridge pickup in a Jazz Bass.  There are infinite positions between these, each yielding a different tonal character.  The pickup can be moved easily, or locked down in a favorite position.  A friction screw can be adjusted according to personal preference.  A further advantage of a single pickup vs. the blending of two pickups lies in the fact that there are no phase cancellations.  The wider arc on top actually compensates for a lesser change in tonal character in the lower strings vs. the higher strings.



At first purely an experiment, it turned out so well that I asked Bill Bartolini to design a pickup specifically suited to this application.  Further refinements in the geometry of the arc and the tilted plane the pickup rides on followed.  I was subsequently granted US patent # 7,060,888 B2 for this design.