Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

"Fender Dead spots" are history


Recommended Posts

For those of you who might be interested, The dreaded "fender dead spots" are a thing of the past. Most Fender American made basses have carbon graphite coated maple rods under the finger board. These rods change the resonant frequency of the necks and eliminate the dead spot. They also help keep the neck nice and straight.

 

I've got two P basses with the rods and both are very even up and down the neck.

 

The Fender catalog (or web site)tells you which basses have the rods.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 28
  • Created
  • Last Reply

It helps, but it doesn't cure the ill. With a maple bold on neck, you'll never get rid of dead spots. This is especially true with one-piece maple necks.

 

Those graphite rods help, for certain, but it is not as effective as multilaminate, dense hardwood necks. My Warwick neck-through is a 9-piece neck with ovankol and ebony stringers. The fact that it is a neck through means you get nearly zero sympathetic resonance with the body. It is even.

 

My American Fender Deluxe Jazz 5 has graphite rods. Dead spot in the classic position.

 

But you take the good with the bad. There is an inherent sound of a maple neck that a lot of people associate with a classic tone.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

;)

 

Carl Thompson is allowed to agree with me, Fred. But I'm not sure that he does based on his responses. It is hard to make a lot of sense out of what he says, but people sure do like his basses.

 

Upright-like-scale on a bass guitar, though? Sheesh! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually what Carl thompson doesn't like is all graphite non adjustable necks, (can you say Modulus? sure you can) this has nothing to do with adjustable graphite reinforced necks.

 

Carl also likes Maple necks.

 

However the real concern is the sound and it is better: more evenly voiced, with a cleaner low end.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Big Daddy from Motown:

However the real concern is the sound and it is better: more evenly voiced, with a cleaner low end.

That is debatable; it is different, but I would hesitate to say better.

 

What you describe as more evenly voiced and cleaner low-end is actually higher harmonics and the familiar sound of a Fender that we have been trained to respond to due to their ubiquitous nature. It does not get more even or clean than a graphite neck, but clean and even does not equal pleasing.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I suppose the only real way to get rid of dead spots would be to use a graphite neck or possibly a multi-laminate neck.

 

The multi-laminate neck might be iffy and I suppose it would depend on the care with which the neck were made.

 

The same would be true of a piece of maple. If the wood were carefully chosen you could probably come up with a neck with minimal dead spots. That's why some of us buy custom made Fender-style basses. They don't come off an assembly line and if the builder doesn't like the result, hopefully he will start over.

 

Some graphite necks are adjustable, some aren't.

 

I don't think I'd buy a non-adjustable one, I have found that graphite necks aren't as stable as they are cracked up to be.....they seem to be very temperature sensitive, much more than wood.

 

That's one reason why I sold my Zon.

 

Graphite necks are made by Modulus, Basslab, Zon, Status, Moses, Steinberger and probably more companies that I don't know about.

 

Many, many people are putting graphite reinforcemnet rods into bass necks these days and they have doing this for a while.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

"Fender" is not the only bass with dead spots. It just happens to be the most successful bass manufacturer.

 

I've played basses where the ENTIRE bass was a dead spot! :D

 

My 1977 P-bass never had them. I learned to keep everything tightened up, though.

 

However, my 1999 and a 2001 Jazz that I played didn't have them either. I would think the graphite does prevent the problem, whether it would have been there or not.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My ultra cheap OLP MM3 doesn't have any dead spots, but my MIJ P-bass has a couple plus a wolf tone around the 10th fret. IMHO, I think that Fender's seem to be more prone to these problems, but i'm not really sure why. I don't think that any one solution (i.e. graphite reinforcement, multi laminate neck, neck through, etc.) is the ultimate cure, there are many other variables involved.

 

If you got two P-basses with no dead spots, then you are a blessed man.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by tnb:

My beloved Sadowsky has no dead spots. Single piece maple on maple.

 

More of Roger's voodoo? Or am I just lucky?

If you mean Roger's voodoo being time and care in selecting the right neck for the right body, then yes. If you slapped the Sadowsky neck on another body, all other things equal, you may very well have some dead notes.

 

And yes, you are luck for having such a fine instrument. :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The only bass I've ever had without a dead spot is my Rickenbacker 4003. Mass produced, 1-piece neck, but neck through, with graphite reinforcement (and two truss rods, btw). Also the most stable neck. I haven't adjusted it in about 6 years (in which time I moved from AZ to KS), and it hasn't shifted at all.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I didn't even know what a dead spot was until I found one on a Carvin multi-laminate neck-through 5 string a few years ago. I returned it to them and they built me another that had a dead spot too, but not nearly as bad.

 

My US Fenders with graphite rods have dead spots, so does my MIJ Geddy Lee Jazz. I just sold a Pedulla Rapture 5 string with a one piece maple neck that had one in the usual place. Even my multi-laminate Roscoe has one, but it is minimal.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All my basses past and present have dead spots except, suprisingly enough, my most inexpensive and beloved Rogue LB405HR. Oh, how I love it! :love:

"He is to music what Stevie Wonder is to photography." getz76

 

I have nothing nice to say so . . .

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

i'm gonna take a guess, and say that a dead spot is a place on the neck where the volume is unequal, as opposed to the rest of the neck?

 

where on the fender website is this info btw?

-BGO

 

5 words you should live by...

 

Music is its own reward

 

---------------

My Band: www.Myspace.com/audreyisanarcissist

Link to comment
Share on other sites

BGO,

 

You are correct.

 

A dead note is caused by sympathetic response of the material to which the strings are anchored (the witness points, the nut and the bridge saddles).

 

There is no way to eliminate dead spots; no matter what you do, whatever those things are anchored to will resonate. It is just the way things are.

 

However, there are things that can be done to reduce the noticable dead notes. I mentioned some; multilaminate neck-through and graphite material help in most cases. However, Lizzy did bring to point the fact that it doesn't always work.

 

However, multilaminate is in general the easiest way to make something more stiff. It is the same reason that bass-producing speaker cabinets have a better response when they are made of plywood rather than solid hardwood. A solid piece of pine doesn't stand a chance in hell against a quailty piece of ply when it comes to strenght of material.

 

Plenty of other things factor. Bridge mass. Nut. Total neck mass. Strings. Everything.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I don't think of dead spots as volume issues as much as sustain issues. The note tends to decay more rapidly than other notes on the instrument. (As Jeremy said, you can usually educate yourself on this pretty quickly by pulling down any Fender & playing somewhere between C & D on the G string.) Of course, the note's rapid decay translates into a rapid drop in volume, as well. As Getz said, the resonance soaks up too much of the string's energy at certain frequencies, & the string stops vibrating too soon.

 

Fortunately, you can play those notes between the 10th & 12th frets on the D string, too. :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The most common place for a dead note (and I'm sure you'll all correct me if I'm wrong) is D on the G string.

 

so.......for us who don't read music, what fret is that? (i'm gonna guess and say 5th?)

 

 

i dunno if my Fender has "dead spots". it was made in 2002. if it does, i've never noticed it before.

 

 

:thu:

-BGO

 

5 words you should live by...

 

Music is its own reward

 

---------------

My Band: www.Myspace.com/audreyisanarcissist

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No notation needed. Dude, you have to get away from tab.

oooo, so close. my instinct told me that it was 7, but then i put 5 becuase i thought about the fact that open D = G 5th.

 

as for tabs, i don't really Rely to much on tabs.

 

just to learn songs, i'm mainly a by ear kinda guy.

 

besides, Duke Ellington was self taught, and there wasn't anything wrong with him.

-BGO

 

5 words you should live by...

 

Music is its own reward

 

---------------

My Band: www.Myspace.com/audreyisanarcissist

Link to comment
Share on other sites

well true, but while he was younger he was a

 

"Largely self taught musican. He developed his skills playing at family socials"

 

so my reference was mainly toward his earlier years, since i am still in my "early years"

 

:)

-BGO

 

5 words you should live by...

 

Music is its own reward

 

---------------

My Band: www.Myspace.com/audreyisanarcissist

Link to comment
Share on other sites

my MIM Jazz fretless has the dead spot, but was greatly reduced when I slapped on the badass 2 bridge. Only becomes noticeable when the strings start to go.

My Ibanez is great, no dead spot there.

 

Like DCR said, dont like that dead spot there is the D string :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Big Daddy from Motown:

 

However the real concern is the sound and it is better: more evenly voiced, with a cleaner low end.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Originally posted by Big Daddy from Getz 76:

That is debatable; it is different, but I would hesitate to say better.

 

What you describe as more evenly voiced and cleaner low-end is actually higher harmonics and the familiar sound of a Fender that we have been trained to respond to due to their ubiquitous nature. It does not get more even or clean than a graphite neck, but clean and even does not equal pleasing.

______________________________________________

 

Getz I'm not talking about a graphite replacement neck but the regular reinforced neck on american standard basses.

 

"More evenly voiced " means that the notes going up the neck on a given string are very close to being the same volume. as opposed to a "dead spot" that is noticeably softer in volume and shorter in sustain.

"Cleaner low end" means more fundemental and less higer order harmonics on the low E string below Ab.

 

My point of reference for all this would be a 64 P bass and a 65 Jazz. Both of which have dead spots, E and Db respectively.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...