a reply to: JinMI
Well, I have posted my sad tale before, but here goes anyway.
I have had my matt black, Stagg XB300 bass guitar for a number of years. When I purchased it at a music store that was going through a liquidation
sale, it only cost me £75.00. At the time, it's list price was £300, and I had been after one for YEARS by that point. My previous bass, which had
the word Encore on its headstock, was purchased for the same amount of money, when I was eighteen years of age, in a second hand music shop. The
Encore bass was in really bad condition, although I had no idea what I was looking at when I bought it, and neither did the lads I had bought along
with me to stop me buying a lemon. It was a lemon. Five frets either side of the twelfth were buzzy as all hell, no matter what setup changes I
attempted. It was the ugliest sounding piece of crap I have ever handled. But at the time, I just wanted to make some noise with my mates, and so it
Naturally, I snapped up my Stagg the moment I realised what a bargain it was though. I had seen it on the net, taken in its sleek, spikey, metalhead
friendly design, found it pleasing to the eye, and had even gone out and played around with one at a guitar store to see how it felt. I knew I was in
love the first time I picked one up, which must have been three years before I bought one. In any case, I purchased it, took it home, and immediately
sunk into its thundering waves of thrashability.
I looked after it, cleaned it, changed the strings now and again, the usual. I was by no means religious with my playing, life getting in the way was
a big part of my life for quite a while. I practiced with some dudes I knew for a year or two. That was a great time. Then, a year ago or so, a friend
of mine and I were hanging out at his place, and we had just been to the music store, to buy new strings, leads, just refresh our supplies. My buddy
is also into bass, but he actually plays in a band and all that. So we are setting up our guitars, and I was saying to my buddy about how I would love
to change the bridge set up and the pickups at some point, because I would love a lower action on the strings, and a little more crunch than I was
getting from the stock pickups.
So he asked me to pass my bass over to him, so he could examine the saddles, pertaining to the previously mentioned set up change. He informed me
that my saddles were so fat, that they would not go any lower than they had been set. While he was eyeing things up, he noticed something...my neck
had relief in it. Not just a little, but a lot. I had noticed that my strings were a little far from the neck, compared with both his guitars, but I
never realised the distance difference was so large, and so had never checked my neck.
A truss rod adjustment did not fix the problem. Basically, the neck is full on warped. It's not turned back around on itself, but it has reached the
point where I am learning nothing by playing the damned thing. I cannot write on it, I cannot play stuff I have already come up with on it, because
the fact is that it is now far too hard to quickly and cleanly make proper contact with the strings and the fretboard. Given that I used to like to
push myself, play as fast as I possibly could, and now cannot get all the way through one of my riffs without drastically ballsing up the timing of my
plucking, or the timing of my finger movements on the fretboard, I am convinced that the only answer is a new neck. That will cost me more than the
entire guitar did, and almost as much as the list price of the guitar when I bought it.
I love playing bass, but I haven't got that kind of money, and if I did, I would spend it on my child, not myself and my hobbies. Basically, I have
the prettiest, most dark, evil looking bass guitar I have ever laid eyes on, and for many years it's served me well, but all it does at the moment is
hang on its Hercules mount, and dare me to frustrate myself with it.