Posted by Bob 'Skippy' Blechinger on September 25, 2001 at 12:11:13:
In Reply to: Anyone tried this crazy idea (5-string bass with 4 strings) posted by Magic on September 25, 2001 at 09:50:40:
: Don't laugh at me (OK, You may laugh, this is crazy).
: I found out hat I hardly ever use the 4th string on my JazzBass, and I like to play quite "high" on the fretboard. I also would like to play some really low-tones, so I could use a 5-string.
: Now to the crazy part - if I don't want to buy a 5-string, so what if I replace the E-string with a B-string from a 5-string set, and move all strings "up" one step, meaning that I would have the string tuned at B-E-A-D !!!!!!!
: Has anybody tried this, what would happen ???
Well, you'd be able to get the really low notes better... ;-)
There's nothing wrong with doing what you suggest, although the B string might wind up sounding a bit anemic as a result.
What you'll have to do to the bass itself is to have the nut filed and the intonation reset in order to compensate for the differences in the string tension; you might have to get the truss rod adjusted, too.
If you need to change strings, you'll probably have to buy a 5-string set and not use the high G string; it'll wind up costing you a bit more to change strings, since the B E A D sets are pretty much non-existent.
Hope that helps!
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