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Finished my two-string bass tonight. Looks real nice, action is fine for fretless playing (neck is a poplar 1x2 with a quarter-inch slab of red oak for a fingerboard). Plugged it in and got this: doodley squat.
I tested the piezo with the "plug it in and tap on it" test while it was under construction, and I can get a sound if I rap on the back of the box with my knuckles, so I know the wiring is functional. The adhesive has had at least a week to cure, too, so I know that's not the issue.
I placed the piezo inside the box on the back of the poplar, like I do with my guitar builds, but this apparently is not where the vibrations happen on a bass. I used an old Peavey bass bridge, bolted to a block of wood inside the box.
So...anybody have advice on where I should have put the disk? I'm willing to do some trial and error, but I'd hate to end up with fifty non-functioning piezos siliconed all over the inside of this goofy thing just to find the right place.
(Also: I don't have any magnetic pickups for it, which I wouldn't be able to retrofit this thing with anyway...I'd really like to use a piezo in this build.)
I was afraid of that...gonna have to take the whole thing apart to do that..
Or I could just use it acoustically. It don't sound terrible that way, and if I get some flatwound strings, it'll sound pretty alright.
Good ideas...I'll probably take off the bridge and "holler out" a little space to nuck a piezo disk directly under it.
I also thought of an incredibly lazy way out...remove the bridge saddles altogether and just use the bridge as a tailpiece, then make a chunky wooden floating bridge that contacts the top of the box directly, then I can move it until it sounds like it's transferring enough energy to the disk.