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This bass was started in 2000 (I glued up the neck laminate in July) and finished in 2006 (February). I planned to finish it during my second year in guitar building course, but finishing the blue bass proved work enough. I came back to France with the half-built bass. I worked on it for a bit and put it aside to work on the fretless. When that was finished I went back to the 5 string.

Because of weight issues I decided to make it semi-hollow and added the 9mm figured Maple top.

Concerning the pickups, I originally wanted BARTOLINIs but given the price and the difficulties to obtain the right models, I jumped in and built my own. They are split-coils with two coils inside the Neck pickup and four inside the Bridge pickup. In each bobbin there are two 5mm diameter Alnico 5 magnets under each string. I wound them on my drill press using AWG-42 coil wire from Stewart MacDonald to obtain 8100, 8550 and 9200 turns. The sound is satisfying, a music shop staffer even told me he wouldn’t have been surprised if I had told him they were BARTOLINIs.

There is one volume per pickup plus one general tone. The Bridge pickup coils are wired in series, the middle pickup’s (under the same cover) are in parallel, the Neck pickup’s are in parallel or in series if one pulls the Neck pickup volume pot. Rotary switch functions :

Neck pickup volume

Bridge pickup volume

Position 1 (toward bridge)

Neck pickup

Bridge pickup

Position 2

Neck pickup

Middle pickup

Position 3

Neck pickup

Bridge pickup and Middle pickup in parallel

Position 4

Neck pickup

Bridge pickup and Middle pickup in series

Position 5 (toward neck)

Neck pickup and Middle pickup in series

Bridge pickup

With my brother Cyrille we added a small preamp which is mainly a impedance adapter following J. Donald Tillman plan (www.till.com)

This bass was change to fetless.

European maple top.

Brazilian mahogany body.

Wood veneered headstock.

Five piece neck, european maple and brazilian mahogany.

Maçaranduba pickup covers. David PINTON pickups (alnico V, split coils).

Assorted Maçaranduba knobs : tone ; Bridge volume ; Neck volume (push-pull) ; five way rotary switch.

Mother of pearl 12th fret inlay.

Gotoh machine heads.

Schaller bridge.

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