Bass as per Gretsch

Discussion in 'Technical Side of Things' started by Geezer1950, Feb 10, 2019.

  1. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
    Any other G6136LSB owners out there that would like to talk about why this guitar is so expensive vs. its value vs. its innovations vs. its shortcomings? I acquired one in a trade........I use it, but if my situation were different I would have traded it away like the original owner and counted it a lesson learned...........maybe
     
  2. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
  3. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
  4. DennisC

    DennisC Gretschie

    126
    May 11, 2017
    Hannover - Germany
    ... which are...?
     
  5. englishman

    englishman Gretschified

    Age:
    61
    Apr 5, 2014
    Detroit
    Looks like it would be a classic neck-diver.
     
  6. Yukimajo

    Yukimajo Gretschie

    Age:
    48
    165
    Nov 4, 2018
    Exeter UK
    As a bassist I would also be interested to know of the shortcomings. Gretsch don't have the most extensive range of long scale basses, so I'd be interested to hear of the problems form someone who actually has one. None of the guitar shops near me ever carry them as stock items so I can't just go and play one to see for myself.
     
  7. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    Note picking on you or trying to be a smartass just curious what the shortcomings are without me writing a novel. I am still researching basses, have never owned or played one before. The guys here have been helping me and when I see a thread like this I figure it is a great time to hear other perspectives so please fill me in on its shortcomings for you.
     
  8. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
    Wfalcon withCABS.jpg 1. No tone control---the mud switch circuit is the same as on the guitars and is ineffective on the lower frequencies of a bass. Reviewers have lost track of which switch is which--one guy even calling the PUP selector a "bass booster."
    2. No individual intonation adjustment possible with stock bridge saddle setup
    3. Roller saddles turn too freely and so change string spacing when changing strings. I can see no real advantage to this but certainly a problem if one is not careful or has not secured the rollers in place.
    4. The body is so huge, not a neck diver, BTW, and the tailpiece so short that if your fav strings come with silk wrapped ends they can end up with the wrap extending past the nut. The A and G of my fav Roto swing bass set did that. Never happened to me before on any of my basses.
    5. A kill switch AND a master volume-- again no advantage to be gained just something else to up the price and possibly be a problem as another unnecessary interruption in the signal path to the amp. see #1.
    6. Being a true hollow body, it will feed back at higher volumes.
    These are all things which can easily be fixed on future production of this bass if Gretsch/FMIC is willing to actually design a bass not just stretch the neck and sell a dressed up guitar as a bass.
    It could be a really excellent instrument and approach the value required of the suggested or even the real world retail price.

    All that being said, I like my bass.................but...........I would never have paid so much for it. I am a large or even extra large human and so I can play it comfortably. My medium to small sized friends cannot, especially sitting down in the studio. Kudos to whoever decided to put locking tuners on it. The TV Jones thundertrons sound great, but the bass still has that hollow body sound and is 34" LONG SCALE. I don't play at high volumes and usually go through a GK700RB line out to the board. I wonder about the future of this bass. There don't seem to be many owners or even retailers who have them and a lot of people are turned off by what they see as gaudy glitz and bling added at the expense of functionality.

    Anyway , that's my experience with this bass which for me, is a keeper, and I'm not sorry I traded an EB-3 for it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
    Bertotti likes this.
  9. DennisC

    DennisC Gretschie

    126
    May 11, 2017
    Hannover - Germany
    Did you buy it new? Or has a previous owner had the chance to mess up electronics? That's not too uncommon, if I recall the weirdest wirings I've seen, while people actually believed they did great work, but in the end only soldered a few shortcuts and interruptions, dis- and reconnected it, ... I'd take a look at that anyway, as it doesn't seem like it satisfies you.

    The capacitors should work, even with a capacity that's not best for their purpose, maybe you could use different ones - but, first check any connections that might be broken. If they are connected correctly, even if they're a bad match, there should be some effect on the sound. The usual tone controls with a pot in a bass guitar use roughly the same range of capacities as in guitars.

    The EB 3 bridge has the same problem (wrapped ends too far in), but in both cases it is hard to find a replacement. I put a Schaller bridge on an EB 0, but had to put a block of aluminium underneath, as it is meant to be used on any kind of bass guitar (their string spacing is pretty narrow, so the usual Fender-replacements won't work), and a hollow body doesn't make this easier. Are there any good bridges for these ones at all? Ever thought about changing the tailpiece? It doesn't look that short to me... The electromatic bass guitars have an adjust-O-matic bridge, according to Gretsch's site, maybe this would at least cure the problem of individual intonation without any major operations necessary. Do they sell these as spare parts?

    Master volume, kill switch, ineffective cpacitors ... if it was mine, I'd rewire the entire stuff. Take out what I don't need, add what I'd like to have and change what doesn't fit its purpose and/or my taste. This doesn't seem to be that kind of flaws one can talk himself into tolerating them.
     
  10. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
    the circuitry is as it was when sold --other people reviewing these basses direct from the factory have commented on the same problem--also tone controls (pots) are variable with a wider range of flavors and the mud switch is fixed at chocolate and vanilla ---actually I find that people are more unlikely to dig into Gretsch circuitry than Gibson, say, or Fender since not many have felt the need to make a Gretsch "fishing kit" like mine--which brings me to my one real gripe about this bass---the back pad is not a cover for the access plate that allows you to get to the circuitry --it's just a pad that saves the finish from being scratched up on the back---buckle rash looks worse than this huge sloppy plastic cover? not in my book :mad:

    -Not sure how we came to be dissing the Gibsons, although they are another company not known for their great love of bass players--Jack Bruce notwithstanding--but for others who may have one--Hipshot makes a 3 point replacement bridge assembly that works great-- I still have an Epiphone EB-3 clone that I fixed with that bridge and their lightweight tuners in the same way I fixed my old Gibson. I would have rather traded it for the Gretsch but my friend--well acquaintance--wanted the "vintage" vibe of the Gibson

    YES THE TAILPIECE IS SHORT and yes you cannot tell from the pix---although if you can if you look closely at the one I posted you can see the silk hanging over the nut --the Glam pix Gretsch posts do not show it --well they do really---but you have to know what you are looking at and I don't know how you do that unless you have one in your hot little hands...

    As far as buying aftermarket parts to make a bass be what it should have been to begin with--do you really want to spend more money on a bass Gretsch lists at $4700.00? IMHO--- THEY should be fixing it if they seriously want to sell this thing to serious bassists--let's face it no beginners are going to spend the $3400.00 on the real world price of something they know needs more parts and work--even if they don't need to hire a luthier to do it--me, I'm an oddball--it works for me out of the box ---I don't use tone controls in the studio much _I would like the option-- 30 years ago I would not have given it a second glance not only because I would have found it offensively gaudy but because it was surpassed by Fender and Rickenbacker basses in playability and versatility and affordability--- these days it adds another string to my bow and broadens my range of voices in the studio--no way would I have ever gigged with one even if it was sold for $499.00--serious money back in the day but not as egregious as today's price
     
  11. DennisC

    DennisC Gretschie

    126
    May 11, 2017
    Hannover - Germany
    Hm, well ... ok, most of this is about versatility and stuff ... it's not your only one ... but the bridge and tailpiece seem a real flaw. I'd even just make a tailpiece myself if it was mine. I know this problem will prevent you from getting anything near acceptable intonation, and, in the end, it's just a piece of sheet metal.

    Same with the tone switch. If it doesn't really work, it may benefit from a few new capacitors - and a tone pot circuit doesn't do much different anyway, but you could also add a pot to it or replace it by a pot or a rotary switch, ... and capacitors of a reasonable capacity are pretty cheap, a few cents and an hour of work...

    Anyway, if this is not about how to fix that stuff ... and as no one who's severely short on money will buy it accidentally ... I don't get it. Is it a warning, a complaint or do you want to solve these issues?

    It is not about dissing the Gibsons, not at all - everyone knows they're a big one in guitars, and a little odd in bass guitars. Everyone who buys one knows.
     
  12. Bertotti

    Bertotti Country Gent

    Jul 20, 2017
    South Dakota
    Thanks for filling me in!
     
  13. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
    I'm sorry I let myself be led off on a tangent here. My excuse is that I was snowed in for a while with no projects going. Let's go back to the original posting and start over. The people I want to talk to would be actual owners and users of this particular bass......................if any
     
  14. englishman

    englishman Gretschified

    Age:
    61
    Apr 5, 2014
    Detroit
    I'd wager you are the only one here.
     
  15. DennisC

    DennisC Gretschie

    126
    May 11, 2017
    Hannover - Germany
    Good luck in finding them... These are rare, obviously not for no reason.
     
  16. Geezer1950

    Geezer1950 Electromatic

    46
    Nov 20, 2018
    here
    So far I have found two. One was the guy I traded with and the other was delusional.