Bass String Ferrules

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
Gettin' ready to order a Jazz Bass body.... and I'm using a bridge that allows string-through or top mount.
Here's my dilemma.
Warmoth sez that their string through ferrule holes are 3/8 inch in diameter.  I already know the guitar ferrule holes are 5/16 inch.
Seems a little small, but that's what's claimed.  The Fender ferrules I've got are .514 which fit in a 1/2 inch hole.  These are splined.  Fender also makes a "vintage" set that are even larger (American 51 P-bass size.. I think .587 from memory)
The dilemma is to open up 3/8 holes to 1/2 inch, without fubaring the finish.  My own thinking suggests to sparingly glue in some 3/8 dowel sections in the holes, and use a brad point drill to widen everything all in one shot.  Depth, of course, is not super critical, so 5/8 inch or so is fine.  Thought Forstner bit... but those can be a little skiddish.
Anyone have a better solution, other than get minuscule Gotoh ferrules?
 

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
That thought also occurred to me.  But I think I'd have to cuta a bunch of the more narrow parts of the step drill to do that
 

Cagey

Senior member
Messages
24,425
Opening existing holes with either brad points or Forstner bits is likely to be squirrelly. Nothing to center them. The instant they start to cut they're going to be pushed off center. If it was me, I'd get some 3/8 dowel, cut 'em square and to flush length, then glue them in to fill those holes. Doesn't need to be pretty. Then, you could use either of those style bits to drill the size hole you want. I've done that in the past to open up output jack holes.
 

BroccoliRob

Senior member
Messages
881
Why not spend the $6 to get some fizz-errules from the Big W and not have to do any extra modifications?

JUST SAYIN'
 

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
Cagey... great minds think alike!  That'll be the plan!
Why use the Fender ferrules?  Oh I don't know.... probably a mix of because that's what I have, and they're the size Fender uses, and well.... they're not those dainty little girly ferrules.
 

BroccoliRob

Senior member
Messages
881
MEH

Dainty ferrules? What is this bizarro world where things like that are significant?

I was practicing my alternate downpicking last night and almost broke my thumb shreddin so hard. I snorted a bunch of Maple wood shavings (aka tone dust) and was Blasting hot licks into the Telesphere. Less ferrules, more practice!
 

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
When it cones to musical  instruments....every detail is significant.  Perfection unobtained yet constantly sought.
 

BroccoliRob

Senior member
Messages
881
8PHn7J1.jpg


Some things just don't matter that much... like acid wash jeans, fretwire material, my jester hat, the diameter of string ferrules, Tom Cruise, how many EL34s you can swallow, or Almond Milk. JUST DRINK COW JUICE

I'm out, I'm throwing my towel into the place where people throw towels that isn't a hamper for dirty towels. Peace and love to you, Brozone Layer.
 

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
I take it from the experts!


Ferrules matter, fretwire matters, drilled hole diameter for different wood density matters, fret end bevel matters, and Tom Cruise can kiss my shiny metal ass. -- Bender
 

Michaelga

Senior member
Messages
142
You can get 3/8" ferrules from Kiesel (kieselguitars.com). They're definitely not dainty.

Michael
 

TBurst Std

Senior member
Messages
2,591
Toulouse_Tuhles said:
Well, some folks consider the 9mm a major caliber too... whatever, I've got a plan for the 1/2 inch ones.
If IPSC considers the 9mm load I use as major, then all more the thanks LOL

I was shooting IPSC competition back when the 38 Auto was becoming the fav child.  I stuck with my Wilson Accu-Comp in 45ACP. Was good enough to get me to the 1986 World Shoot
 

vid1900

Active member
Messages
25
"Zero Flute" countersinking bits shave through wood and finish without chipping or tearout.

Unplug your drillpress, and just hand turn the chuck until the bit shaves the hole to the proper diameter.  Then drill out the wood conventionally for depth. 

These bits self center, so no worries about wandering.

Because they are made for metalworking, they will last a lifetime for luthery. 
 

Attachments

  • zero flute.jpg
    zero flute.jpg
    35.6 KB · Views: 187

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
Nice to know.
I had a look at my various step drills... and found an honest to Pete "Uni-Bit" that had one step between 3/8 and 1/2 inch.  Since I have that, I'm gonna just see how big the hole really is, and see how that goes first.  That's plan A, then plan B is plug 'em up and redrill.  Although, those bits might be plan B, dunno.
 

Cagey

Senior member
Messages
24,425
The "step bits" I've seen are for fairly thin materials, as the distance between steps is typically pretty small. Not meant to drill holes of any depth, just to change the diameter of holes in thin things like sheet metal. Drilling a hole of any depth would result in a conical hole in the shape of the step bit. So... not suitable for ferrule holes at all, which are typically 3/8" or more deep.
 

Toulouse_Tuhles

Senior member
Messages
236
Cage, I know what you're sayin....
All I need to do is cut a clean edge in the finish, the surface, and down a little into the body.... like the dept of the unibit.  Then I can use a forstener as the "walls" will be guiding the bit. 

See post #2 in this thread.....
 

Cagey

Senior member
Messages
24,425
As long as you use a Forstner with smooth rather than serrated edges, like this one...

Z1s6s-qcpEx_.JPG

... it should cut the finish nice and clean.

Here's a shot of a couple holes done that way...

img_1073_Sm.jpg

That's cutting through the finish material Warmoth uses. I've had similar results in lacquer.
 
Top