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Thread: Does anybody make a 5 string Flying V Bass?

  1. #1

    Does anybody make a 5 string Flying V Bass?

    Thereís something about the V body shape that appeals to me sometimes. The Dean Metalman V Bass is looking really good right now. Id like to just buy a Dean Metalman V outright but thereís only one problem....itís a 4 string and I need a 5. Ah...plus, we can build a better axes from these kits!

    After a little research, I discovered there is no such thing as a 5 string Flying V bass! Ok...thereís this Chinese Jackson Rhodes knockoff but thatís not quite the same.Click image for larger version. 

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    That would be a great kit! I might just settle for making the DIY Pitbull V bass kit and string it BEAD instead of EADG.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Last edited by MusicStudent1; 11-06-2020 at 09:55 AM.

  2. #2
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    You might be able to do this with a custom order. The page does say some bodies can't be modified for more strings but it doesn't specify, so it's probably worth dropping them an email about it.
    1. GS-2Q
    2. EX-1 custom

  3. #3
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    You'd need to be very specific as the factories aren't good at thinking things through logically. tell them only one pickup but they are still likely to put in a selector switch rout and drill holes for the normal complement of volume and tone knobs. So any and all changes would need to be fully detailed. Things like how do the tuners fit on the headstock? That's one good reason why you don't see a 5-string Flying V bass. The arrow headstock really limits the space available for tuners, so to fit 5 tuners in would make it a very large headstock. Try drawing it out for yourself. And do you go 3+2, 2+3 or even 4+1 etc? The Explorer-shaped banana headstock makes fitting 5 tuners on a lot easier, but it does detract from the general V styling. You could stick one right on the point of the arrowhead, but it would look rather strange, even if it was practical.

    Lightweight mini tuners would help, say some Hipshot units, but you won't get them cheaply and would hugely increase the kit price if they were supplied with the kit (allowing for standard percentage mark-ups).

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Barden View Post
    You'd need to be very specific as the factories aren't good at thinking things through logically. tell them only one pickup but they are still likely to put in a selector switch rout and drill holes for the normal complement of volume and tone knobs. So any and all changes would need to be fully detailed. Things like how do the tuners fit on the headstock? That's one good reason why you don't see a f5-string Flying V bass. The arrow headstock really limits the space available for tuners, so to fit 5 tuners in would make it a very large headstock. Try drawing it out for yourself. And do you go 3+2, 2+3 or even 4+1 etc? The Explorer-shaped banana headstock makes fitting 5 tuners on a lot easier, but it does detract from the general V styling. You could stick one right on the point of the arrowhead, but it would look rather strange, even if it was practical.

    Lightweight mini tuners would help, say some Hipshot units, but you won't get them cheaply and would hugely increase the kit price if they were supplied with the kit (allowing for standard percentage mark-ups).
    You guys are both 100% right. I did send in an email, and it does look like one can be made. Iím going to place the order with detailed specs in a few days.

    Regarding the headstock, I hope they can make something like whatís shown in the photo below.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Iím also going to see if they can make a neck with 24 frets.

    I might ask them to rout the volume and tone control cavity and not drill the holes for the controls. A switch could be used in a one pickup bass as a kill switch / stutter switch. I did that to a guitar in the Ď80s. It can also be used to make a coil splitting effect with active pickups so if the holes are drilled for that, it wonít bother me.

    Iíll be a somewhat upgraded (5 string, better neck joint, upgraded bridge and tuners) Dean Metalman V type guitar. Thatís the goal.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #5
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    Just be aware the more complicated your request, the more opportunity for the factory to get something wrong.

    Speaking from experience, I ordered a custom (also a V, but a guitar) with a few different customizations and the biggest one was completely skipped over. Wanted the control cavity routed from the rear instead of the top so I wouldn't need a pickguard, but they still top routed it. Got the GS-2Q I'm working on now instead of a refund.
    1. GS-2Q
    2. EX-1 custom

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Chaosblade View Post
    Just be aware the more complicated your request, the more opportunity for the factory to get something wrong.

    Speaking from experience, I ordered a custom (also a V, but a guitar) with a few different customizations and the biggest one was completely skipped over. Wanted the control cavity routed from the rear instead of the top so I wouldn't need a pickguard, but they still top routed it. Got the GS-2Q I'm working on now instead of a refund.
    Thanks for the heads-up. I looked up your GS-2Q build and thatís some good work! This will be my 2nd build (first was an EX-5 Bass). I just want to do a quality loss black finish this time. The paint on my 1st build settled into the wood over time and the underlying sanding scratches show. Hey, I can live with it. Iíll do better next time.

    Iím not really worried about the body of the bass. Iím reconsidering the single pickup idea....I donít use the neck pickup on my guitar but for bass....it might be useful to have it. Where they could screw up is the headstock. Iím imagining a nightmare where the holes are so close together that the tuning machines wonít fit.

    I am considering requesting the neck be sent with an extra large blank paddle with no tuning machine holes. That way, I should be able to shape an arrow headstock and make certain the tuners have enough room.

    This really is the goal. For headstocks, I want it big...maybe I should do this myself.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    What to you guys think? Coping saw, careful drilling?
    Last edited by MusicStudent1; 01-07-2020 at 02:15 PM.

  7. #7
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
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    I don't think Pit Bull is the place to go for this sort of custom job. If it's not a simple modification of an existing model, or something that can be simply assembled from parts from two models made by the same factory (as PB get their kits from several factories), there is an almost certain chance that something will go wrong and you won't get what you want. It's just not that sort of custom shop.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Simon Barden View Post
    I don't think Pit Bull is the place to go for this sort of custom job. If it's not a simple modification of an existing model, or something that can be simply assembled from parts from two models made by the same factory (as PB get their kits from several factories), there is an almost certain chance that something will go wrong and you won't get what you want. It's just not that sort of custom shop.
    Thanks, Simon. An almost certain chance something will go wrong?! Lol. Thatís the story of my life. I am sure you are right but there is no stopping me. No guts, no glory! Hereís the thing...a 5 string V bass does not exist so Iím already unable to get the instrument I want - Iím willing to take a chance.

    If I get a box of bits and pieces that donít fit together, or they send me the wrong neck, Iíll make the best of it. Thanks for the warning, my friend.
    Last edited by MusicStudent1; 02-07-2020 at 09:15 AM.

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