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Thread: Pitbull Bass lower tuning mods

  1. #1

    Pitbull Bass lower tuning mods

    Greetings... I've been looking at a couple of the PB DIY bass kits (specifically the RD-4 bass) and I'm wondering if anyone has built/set them up to be tuned BEAD vs standard tuning.

    I plan on using the lowest 4 strings of a 5 string set, so I'm wondering what sort of modifications would need to happen to make sure the bass is set up correctly.

    My assumptions so far are:
    - Nut would need to filed down to accommodate the larger gauge strings

    Unknown / potential modifications or tweaks:
    - Bridge saddles and/or machine heads filed down to accommodate the larger gauge strings?
    - Truss rod adjustments to account for tension?
    - ??

    Any thoughts?


  2. #2
    GAStronomist Simon Barden's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    Reading, UK
    Hi and welcome.

    String tension should be roughly the same, though you'll need to adjust the truss rod anyway. Yes, nut slots all widened, though you may want to fit a new nut or even cut down a suitable 5-string nut to keep the string spacing between the strings even, otherwise the Band E will be a fair bit closer together than the A and D strings.

    The low B will probably fit in the existing saddle slots quite happily as the saddles aren't generally widened any more for the low B than the other strings. They generally get made with a one-size-fits-all slot width. You may have to enlarge the anchor hole in the rear of the bridge. On my 5-string Peavey, the anchor hole for the B string wasn't big enough to get the ball end winding through of the 0.130" B string I used without really having to use a lot of force. I ended up enlarging the hole with a drill. But the RD-4 bridge uses a slot-in system, so you may be OK there.

    The machine heads will be fine as they are as the strings will come down to a thinner core for the winding part - but you may need to investigate bass strings that have the right mixture of fat and thin bits for your bass. You don't want the thick part of the string progressing much beyond the nut, and you certainly don't want any of it trying to wrap around the tuner post.

    But the kit bridge for the RD-4 really is pretty dire and won't get the best sound from the bass.You may be best looking at an aftermarket bridge. And the engineered wood fretboard on that bass is awful, and will need stabilising with thin CA to hold it together.

    I had the same neck and bridge on an ESB-4 kit, which I eventually gave to a mate who finished it (he used a very thin epoxy on the fretboard). At least the RD-4 has a solid wood body and flat top, as the same bridge on that semi-acoustic bass with soft wood internal block situated on an angled body has a horrible tendency to pull out the studs. Fitted a Hipshot bridge in the end.

  3. #3
    Mentor fender3x's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Miami, FL, USA
    I have considered doing the same thing with one of my basses so this made interesting reading.

    The kit three point bridges are awful. I tried to make them work on two ES basses with no joy. The internet is full of stories of them pulling out on T-birds. The Hipshot is probably your best option if you want to keep the pre-drilled holes.

    Sent from my ONEPLUS A3000 using Tapatalk

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