#1 resource for Cigar Box Guitars, Free Plans, How-To, Parts & More!
Cigar Box Nation is sponsored by C. B. Gitty Crafter Supply, your one-stop-shop for Cigar Box Guitar parts and accessories!
As a regular player of bass. Usually a bass guitar but sometimes a cigar box stand up bass, I personally think you would be better using your skills to construct a 3 string bass. This is because the playing of apegios would be difficult with 2 strings.,
If you are determined to use 2 strings - and why not - then tune to E and A (the bottom 2 strings of a bass guitar) as this is ideal to playing 5ths - a very useful bass style. Should you need to go lighter the next two strings could be used (A and D) or, lighter still the D and G strings of a bass instrument - the top 2.
I used a length of pine for the neck of my stand up bass and used strimmer lines so I have no idea over the need for truss rods but I think that 3/4" would not have the strength for a 2 string bass,
How well does it hold its tune with trimmer line? I've seen that a lot and have wondered if the tension eventually causes it to slacken. And how are the acoustics of it, or is it piezo or nothing?
Thanks for the quick reply,
The tone of the strimmer (brushwacker) line is fine. They hold their tune as well as - say a cheap ukulele with less than perfect strings. Once they are fully stretched and played in, they hold very well. This is with standard bass tuning.
The cigar box used is the very smallest I could find and is probably made if matchwood. Acoustically it is louder than an electric bass guitar, but no where near as loud as a 'proper' stand up bass. It would need a much bigger box to work acoustically, so it was built to work electronically with a standard piezo of about 2".
I have seen and heard - on t'internet of people using very large cardboard boxes (instead of cigar boxes) to achieve a louder acoustic instrument
two string bass are good... 3/4 inch hardwood is fine.(no poplar).... trimmer line will keep tune OK once stretched out... to get low "E" you'll need at least 0.125 or larger(I've used up to 0.155 that I got from commercial trimmer supplier) on a 30" scale... that's pretty large... think about A-D tuning.... then you'll have smaller more comfortable line and still good low bass tones....
experience from about 30 CBGBasses....
When I was building my bass I was thinking about the 1/2 string rout, the plan was to use the low E and the D string so its easy to play octave riffs, but in the end I went for the 3 strings aesthetically better looking and more playing options. I think if you go for fewer than three strings you should go full hill billy with it and just go for the one.