Hybrid bass with double articulating armrest and strap extension. I started building this bass about 8 years ago while still in L.A.. Originally the center section and the lower wing were of a single piece. This was visually less-than-satisfying and gave the bass an unbalanced apprearance. Other projects intruded and the bass remained in this form until now, after our move to Vienna. Looking at it again recently the solution finally occured to me - separate the electronics pod and as bonus add an additional measure of adjustability. By now well-seasoned, the rich hues of the Thuya burl mesh well with the sheen of aluminum, with the long strap extension adding a dramatic note. Both in the sitting position and standing it is comfortable and well-balanced.
Neck-through design, Walnut/Maple laminate. Rosewood fingerboard, 34" scale. Two-way truss rod. Body wings Ash, topped with Thuya burl. Center section topped with Thuya burl and Wenge accents. Removable legrest of aluminum and Thuya burl. All aluminum parts are hand-shaped and polished from T6-6061 aluminum billet. Bartolini Music Man pickup, switchable parallel/series, Sustainiac circuit, Hipshot tremolo and tuners. Noll TCMP-3 preamp, Dunlop Straplocks.
The arm rest can be moved along its rotating axis as well as lifted or lowered along the body-center axis for maximum adjustability. The lower wing containing the electronics can also be moved for preferred placement of the controls. This has turned out to be a remarkable instrument with a clear punchy sound and great sustain (even without the Sustainer). The Sustainer in conjunction with the tremolo adds a whole new dimension to what can be done with a bass!
A fun commission - anything goes, with a Sci-Fi theme. Bassist Norbert Zucker sent me a little green man and asked me to design something wild. The result is the UFO-Bass. The body and neck are Padouk, with a Redwood Burl top on the body. A polished aluminum handle/strap holder and aluminum control plate complete the design. The armrest contains the "capsule" for the alien traveller, set in resin. The combination of a Hipshot Bass Tremolo with the Sustainiac make for some otherworldly sounds.
Norbert's battle rig
On a more traditional note... Swamp Ash body, Maple neck with block inlays and Lindy Fralin Jazz Bass pickups. The finish inspired the name ('Wizard of Oz').
Taking the S&S concept as a starting point I used the Warmoth Bocote neck producer Rob Schnapf brought me and made a PJ with a fiddleback Ash top. Due to the heavy neck and light body this bass is a bit neck-heavy...