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Old school bass

Posted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 8:55 pm
by joppo
Just got back from a week in Vanuatu :D , where we were entertained one night by a local string band. While most of the instruments were pretty modern, you'll see the bass wasn't. The guy did an awesome job, and while it looked like it had a pretty hard like, it had a cool tone. I would have loved to have a try but we had to leave before they left. Anyone had a go at playing one of these?
basschest.jpg

Re: Old school bass

Posted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:33 pm
by john
no i haven't ,would love too though. wonder how hard it would be to make. how much volume did it put out?

Re: Old school bass

Posted: Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:56 pm
by joppo
It had enough volume to be heard pretty well over three guitars, a ukulele and a drum. It looks easy enough to make. You just need an old tea chest, a broom handle and the string. I don't know what they used for the string, but it was pretty strong - playing it looked pretty physical. The broom handle 'neck' isn't attached to the box at the bottom. It sits in a little slot at one corner - just enough of a lip so he could put lots of pressure on the neck to change the note without the bottom slipping. He played each note with his thumb - he had just hit the string in the photo. I assume it is the top of the box vibrating that actually makes the note so the length of ther string and 'neck' aren't probably super critical. The hardest bit is probably having to make a strong but light tea chest yourself. I don't know where you could find one already made up.

Re: Old school bass

Posted: Mon Sep 08, 2008 1:32 am
by Oxblood
That baby will be worth a fortune, too. I mean, that's gotta be one of Leo's really early designs... :wink:

Re: Old school bass

Posted: Fri Aug 28, 2015 9:54 am
by mickeyj4j
If your interested in making one they are easy, I was looking at diy bass videos and came across the washtub bass. Instead of using a tchest/blanket box they use a metal washtub, broom handle, and a piece or rope or cloths line stuff.washtub found at miter 10 for $20

Re: Old school bass

Posted: Sat Aug 29, 2015 6:25 am
by cjj
I've actually played one of those...
Washtub.jpg