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Old 12-21-2014, 02:31 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Default Getting to know them.......

Dear bassplayers,

I always had a huge soft spot for Ken Smith basses. Great craftsmanship and beautiful instruments!
I'd really like to buy one, but its very very hard to get my hands on one where i live. And before i buy one i like to try one out.
I know it's an almost impossible question, but which bass is a benchmark for a Ken Smith BSR 4 string? Considering it's feel, playability, neckprofile and stringspacing?

Thanks for the effort, with many regards.

Last edited by Frank Graveyard; 12-21-2014 at 04:11 PM.
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  #2  
Old 12-21-2014, 08:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Graveyard View Post
Dear bassplayers,

I always had a huge soft spot for Ken Smith basses. Great craftsmanship and beautiful instruments!
I'd really like to buy one, but its very very hard to get my hands on one where i live. And before i buy one i like to try one out.
I know it's an almost impossible question, but which bass is a benchmark for a Ken Smith BSR 4 string? Considering it's feel, playability, neckprofile and stringspacing?

Thanks for the effort, with many regards.
Hi, I am sure that you will find more than one opinion but I would like to give a bit of insight on our model levels. First off, Smith Basses with its options and models rank from the Top and go down as features come off. Rather than say, buying an economy car and adding features, the Smith Bass starts at the Elite as far as our every day average bass. The Elite models have the high gloss Lacquer finish. Before 1986, all but a few basses were done with an oil/varnish finish. Today, we make the Elite and just below that, a similar level bass with the oil/varnish finish and one body lamination less, 3 instead of 5. There are no neck profile options because they are 100% hand-made but follow the same design. The four-string bass has only one spacing with 10mm at the nut and 19mm at the bridge. We did make a bass or two with 11mm at the nut as a trial but it was never requested since then and that was about 15 years ago if memory serves me correctly.

Please look thru the model pages and get a bit of a grip on these basses as well as how or why we do what we do. I am always available to answer questions here, by email or on the phone, schedule permitting.

http://www.kensmithbasses.com/about.html

http://www.kensmithbasses.com/models...hrumodels.html
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  #3  
Old 12-22-2014, 04:49 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Thank you very much for the advice. I will read thru the model pages to get a grip on the models and woods available.
Your explanation certainly helps me to get the Ken Smith top down approach. My favorite is the BSR body shape, and i really like the BSR GN/TN/WT/EG models.
What's the neckwith of a BSR four string at the topnut?
There is just one thing that remains; to find me a Ken Smith bass for testing to lead me into the world of Ken Smith basses!

Thanks again for the effort, with many regards.
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  #4  
Old 12-22-2014, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Graveyard View Post
Thank you very much for the advice. I will read thru the model pages to get a grip on the models and woods available.
Your explanation certainly helps me to get the Ken Smith top down approach. My favorite is the BSR body shape, and i really like the BSR GN/TN/WT/EG models.
What's the neckwith of a BSR four string at the topnut?
There is just one thing that remains; to find me a Ken Smith bass for testing to lead me into the world of Ken Smith basses!

Thanks again for the effort, with many regards.
http://www.kensmithbasses.com/options.html
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Old 12-25-2014, 12:55 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Thumbs up

Thank you.
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  #6  
Old 10-09-2016, 03:16 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Default Ken Smith BSR4GNF TW

Found a Ken Smith BSR4GNF TW 2008 on the internet. Looks great and in good condition.
But I'm not sure about its pick-ups. Didn't they use to have adjustable pole pieces?

http://http://www.ebay.com/itm/2008-...IAAOSwENxXls0f
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  #7  
Old 10-10-2016, 10:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Graveyard View Post
Found a Ken Smith BSR4GNF TW 2008 on the internet. Looks great and in good condition.
But I'm not sure about its pick-ups. Didn't they use to have adjustable pole pieces?

http://http://www.ebay.com/itm/2008-...IAAOSwENxXls0f
Did you notice it's a fretless?

I think the pickups are fine, just hard to see the pole pieces.
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Old 10-10-2016, 02:42 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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I asked the seller for some additional pictures. The pickups don't have the adjustable pole pieces.
Is there a pre and post period on four string pick ups from Ken Smith basses?

And yes I noticed, that its a fretless.
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  #9  
Old 10-10-2016, 04:59 PM
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Ronen Tat Ronen Tat is offline
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I've only seen 6string Smiths with flat pickup covers. Do you know if these are
original?
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  #10  
Old 10-11-2016, 02:40 AM
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Exclamation Japan?

First, do not buy a bass from Japan unless you live there. That code is a Japan dealers code. It is a BSR4GN, Fretless with Imbuia top and back with mahogany core and maple laminates.

Also, some of these sellers are Fraud, copying pics from other dealers and claiming to have the bass.

Third, they pay more shipping and duty to get the basses there.

You can do better to buy a bass in Europe or even better from USA.

A NEW bass like that from us with Warranty is $5795 plus shipping. I don't know about the takes or Duty but from Japan, you will pay that a well.

Bass is 5295, 5pc body is $200 and lined fretless is $300.

Flat Top pickups are available on all models by special order.

Now, you have all the information. So, the math is, a used bass at 10% off the current full price but, was slightly less when new in 2015.

Be careful.
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Old 10-11-2016, 05:34 AM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Thumbs up

To be honest, I had my doubts about the seller. I guess I was a bit blinded by the beauty of the bass.
This is very valuable information! Thank you very much for your advice Ken!
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Old 01-03-2018, 03:11 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Default From fretted to fretless..

In my quest for a fretless Ken Smith, I only come across fretted 4 string BSR basses.
Is it simply possible to convert a fretted into a fretless? Or is there perhaps a difference in the build between these basses?
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  #13  
Old 01-03-2018, 04:59 PM
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Exclamation Convert? xxx

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Graveyard View Post
In my quest for a fretless Ken Smith, I only come across fretted 4 string BSR basses.
Is it simply possible to convert a fretted into a fretless? Or is there perhaps a difference in the build between these basses?
We make the Fingerboards thicker on the Fretless models to make up for the height of the Frets. If not, the Bridge will be too low and at the wrong angle for the strings at the bridge saddles.

If converting a Bolt-on, then we would make a permanent Shim under the neck at the locket and/or re-pitch the neck for its height.

Frets in a slot help with the string pull resistance so making a thicker fingerboard help add strength that wont be there from the frets pushing the fingerboard back in the slots.

All of this is slight but makes a difference.

We have made Fretless models on 4, 5 and 6-string basses, with and without fret lines.
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  #14  
Old 01-04-2018, 01:25 PM
Frank Graveyard Frank Graveyard is offline
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Thanks very much for your replay. Speaking of fretboardthickness, what's the difference in mm?
I found a stunning fretted Ken Smith BSR 4 string White Tiger from 2011. Are there specific types of wood used in the build of a fretless body/neck?
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  #15  
Old 01-04-2018, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Graveyard View Post
Thanks very much for your replay. Speaking of fretboardthickness, what's the difference in mm?
I found a stunning fretted Ken Smith BSR 4 string White Tiger from 2011. Are there specific types of wood used in the build of a fretless body/neck?
Thickness difference is about the fret height amount.

Same woods used per the model made, fretted or fretless.
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