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 Post subject: X650JB - Fretless Bass
PostPosted: Sun Jun 12, 2011 5:48 pm 
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Location: New Jersey
So I bought another X650JB sight unseen because I think they're fantastic basses and soooo inexpensive. I paid $XXX shipped. When it arrived I was very surprised to see that it's fretless. The neck is bolted on with screws and not the allen wrench config of the X695JB. The two basses together have very different fingerboard colors. I believe both are rosewood but the fretted bass has a much darker almost ebony color. Aside from that and a brass nut on the fretted, graphite/plastic on the fretless, they're identical. S/N's start 305 and 306. Has anyone ever heard of seen a fretless 650? I thought the 695 was the only Electra Bass available fretless.

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Last edited by Jead on Sat Jul 16, 2011 3:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:34 am 
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Joined: Thu May 03, 2007 9:32 am
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Location: NYC
I am pretty sure that bass had the frets removed. From the closeup picture you can see the inevitable chipping of the board when the frets were pulled. Looks like a good job though.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 6:10 am 
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I studied it a little more closely this morning and I'm going to agree that the frets were removed. At first I thought that perhaps frets were never installed. Removal would also explain the lighter colored fretboard. Remove frets, fill the slots, sand and seal. I will also agree that it was a good job - in fact very good. I had a fretless Ric 4003 for many years and this plays better than the Ric ever did. I discovered the nut (which is higher than the brass nut) is floating freely and is out of whack. A drop or 2 of super glue will fix that. Anyway I look at it, I'm figuring I got lucky with this one. The fretboard is very smooth, the position markers are all intact, and I get that distinctive fretless sound along with the great stock sounds this bass already had. It's also in really excellent cosmetic condition. For a hack bass player like myself, the filled frets are like training wheels. :) The only downside is I was going to choose the better of the 2 basses and sell the other. Now I have 2 distinctly different basses. What a horrible problem. :blush:


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 9:36 am 
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Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan
I would think any respectable seller would disclose whether the instrument was fretted or not... although maybe it was someone who wasn't too savvy about guitars. It seems like there is some slop between the end of the fretboard and the 'new' nut, which normally spells intonation #ell for a instrument, but seeing as there aren't any frets, maybe thats not that big a deal. Looks like a good buy though, cheers!

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 5:43 pm 
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Fretless normally have a lower nut than a fretted but if it works, don't fix it.

BTW I play upright bass and still like having the lines on the fretless. I'll take any help I can get.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 13, 2011 6:13 pm 
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Location: New Jersey
The nut works fine - It's cut really deep to compensate for fretless. Why? I don't know. It should have been ground down on the bottom. It's cut so deep that the strings are actually recessed in - run a finger across the top of the nut and you don't feel the strings at all. I've never seen anything like it. I'd like to sand down the top but maybe I should leave well enough alone and just glue the nut back in place. If it screws up in the future then maybe a new nut goes in.


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