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Backache - I may need something lighter


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#1 geoham

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 03:45 PM

I've been having a bit of lower back pain recently, and suspect playing bass may be responsible. I've been gigging with my Lakland 55-01 recently. I don't know how much it weighs, but it's definitely heavier than both my Fenders.

I took my Fender J to a rehearsal this week and will gig with it on Saturday just to see if it has any impact. (I've been gigging and rehearsing every week with the 55-01 for the past while)

I love the bass, but I suspect it may have to go if I can rid myself of backache using my four string basses. I really hope this not to be the case, since I love this bass!

So, to get to my point... is anyone aware of a modern, versitile, lightweight five string bass? I really quite missed the B string the other night! Another caveat is that I like the 35 inch scale and wide string spacing. (I realise I may be asking too much!)



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#2 gary mac

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 03:49 PM

I'm not a five string player but did borrow a Dingwall fiver for a while. It was very light, lighter than many of the four string basses that I've owned, balanced nicely on the strap and for me, the neck/fretboard was very comfortable.

#3 Al Krow

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 03:58 PM

This: http://www.ibanez.co...d=67&color=CL01

I personally love the tone of the big Nordstrand PUPs and I suspect you won't find an easier to play neck. But it's 34" and not 35".
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#4 chris_b

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:07 PM

The 55-01 will be somewhere in the high 9 lbs, or could even be more than10 lbs. They are heavy basses.

You can get 5ers in the 8 - 9 lbs range if you look hard enough. My Mike Lull P bass is 8 1/2 lbs and is a great sounding and playing bass. Brother Jones is selling a Mike Lull M5V Jazz which comes in a less than 9 lbs. This is a great sounding bass.

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:07 PM

Maybe email Mark at Bass direct?

They usually have a good selection of instruments, he's also very knowledgeable and generally helpful.

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#6 T-Bay

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:10 PM

I have a Yamaha RBX375 and that is much lighter than my Thunderbird four string and lighter than most of my others as well.

#7 AntLockyer

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:18 PM

GAS excuse. Strengthen your back or core now before it is too late.

#8 MoonBassAlpha

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:23 PM

Core strength exercises often help with backache. I often suffered after playing squash, and found certain ones help, and now rarely get back issues, but I do need to keep them up. Gotta be better than selling your favourite bass :)
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#9 project_c

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:45 PM

This may be slightly off topic but I have blamed lower back pain on certain basses in the recent past, and then I found that the actual cause of the pain was work stress combined with a lack of sleep. I'm not suggesting this is the case here, but for me physical and mental health has a huge impact on how my body feels. If i'm stressed and overworked I get all sorts of weird aches and pains. The joys of being self employed..

#10 fretmeister

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 04:50 PM

Marleaux Consat Custom 5

Light, modern.

34 scale, but mine has a better B than any bass I've ever played - even at 37 inch scales.

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#11 geoham

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 06:27 PM

Thanks for the advice and recommendations! Lot of pretty awesome looking basses there!

Definitely a few things to think about too. I definitely could be fitter, though I've always considered myself to be strong. (I'm always the guy to lift the PA speakers or heavy box!)

Work stress and lack of could be an issue too... just at the tail end of a 4 year Finance/ IT project at work that's been tough going, plus the fact that I'm also gigging more that I ever have too. The joys of being an adult AND a musician!

I have a few weeks off gigging now, so I'll see how my back does. I'll run with a Fender four string for a while before splashing out too.

Cheers,

George
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#12 spectoremg

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 08:40 PM

View Postproject_c, on 07 September 2017 - 04:45 PM, said:

This may be slightly off topic but I have blamed lower back pain on certain basses in the recent past, and then I found that the actual cause of the pain was work stress combined with a lack of sleep. I'm not suggesting this is the case here, but for me physical and mental health has a huge impact on how my body feels. If i'm stressed and overworked I get all sorts of weird aches and pains. The joys of being self employed..
I was also thinking that the cause might not be your bass. Your back doesn't necessarily get painful at the time it's being abused. Got any Trace Elliot gear? ;)

#13 geoham

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 08:44 PM

View Postspectoremg, on 07 September 2017 - 08:40 PM, said:

I was also thinking that the cause might not be your bass. Your back doesn't necessarily get painful at the time it's being abused. Got any Trace Elliot gear? ;)
I don't get too much pain when I'm playing, it's more so the day after. I've never had an Trace Elliot gear, but I got rid of my Ashdown stuff in favour of TC Electronic for a reason!
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#14 NJE

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 09:17 PM

Like someone else said earlier, I would be looking at solutions to the back pain other than simply swapping basses. I suffer with my back but my wife is a physio and gave me really simple excercises to do to help when I get pain but also to do as a preventative measure.

Go and see someone before you sell a bass and possibly spend a lot of money on a new one. It might be something you can remedy simply with excercise. It's got very little to do with your overall strength in a lot of cases, I can lift PA speakers and lug around heavy stuff, but sometimes my back is just triggered by sitting badly at a computer and once bending down to tie my shoelace.

Go see a physio would be my advice from a fellow bad back sufferer.
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#15 Count Bassy

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 11:21 PM

If the weight of a bass, which after all is not very much, is causing you problems then I suspect that the problem is more to do with posture than with the weight of the bass. (IMHO of course)

Ah - beaten to it by a a few hours.

Edited by Count Bassy, 07 September 2017 - 11:22 PM.

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#16 chris_b

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Posted 07 September 2017 - 11:26 PM

I'd also be looking at strengthening your back. I do Pilates, which is starting to show results.

But even if you're another Geoff Capes I still don't see the point in carrying a boat anchor around when you don't have to.

This is a 2 pronged issue and you should be getting stronger and finding the best light weight bass you can.
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#17 lojo

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 05:16 AM

I had back issues over a number of years , turned out I fractured it in a fall which I only discovered after a scan for other issues

Anyway , physio really helped me learn how to strengthen the muscles and about standing postions for long periods such as playing

I also think strap type makes a massive difference with a heavier bass

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#18 SpondonBassed

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 06:45 AM

View Postgeoham, on 07 September 2017 - 03:45 PM, said:

I've been having a bit of lower back pain recently, and suspect playing bass may be responsible. I've been gigging with my Lakland 55-01 recently. I don't know how much it weighs, but it's definitely heavier than both my Fenders.

I took my Fender J to a rehearsal this week and will gig with it on Saturday just to see if it has any impact. (I've been gigging and rehearsing every week with the 55-01 for the past while)

I love the bass, but I suspect it may have to go if I can rid myself of backache using my four string basses. I really hope this not to be the case, since I love this bass!

So, to get to my point... is anyone aware of a modern, versitile, lightweight five string bass? I really quite missed the B string the other night! Another caveat is that I like the 35 inch scale and wide string spacing. (I realise I may be asking too much!)

Is it pain or a bad ache? Could it be your body adjusting to a slightly different posture with the recent change of bass? Sometimes a period of adjustment is required during which there may be discomfort. If it's actual pain, seek medical advice.

It would seem unfair on yourself if you let go of the Lakland over a mere physical adjustment issue.

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#19 AntLockyer

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:25 AM

Was chatting to a friend about back pain and his was caused by something very serious indeed. My new advice is go to the Dr :)

Edited by AntLockyer, 08 September 2017 - 07:25 AM.


#20 Steve Browning

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 09:14 AM

http://basschat.co.u...4/page__st__210

This was an excellent talk at the SE Bash in 2014. I've remembered all of the exercises but must confess I haven't A-framed for a while. Well worth a look.
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Posted 08 September 2017 - 09:51 AM

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#22 Pinball

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 10:54 AM

View PostAl Krow, on 07 September 2017 - 03:58 PM, said:

This: http://www.ibanez.co...d=67&color=CL01

I personally love the tone of the big Nordstrand PUPs and I suspect you won't find an easier to play neck. But it's 34" and not 35".

I agree, alternatively a high end Bass Collection or what about a newer BTB if you want 35" scale. They are also pretty lightwieght (or at least mine is). The Prestige and some of the high end premium Ibanez have different pup and pre-amp combo's

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#23 geoham

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 11:31 AM

View PostAntLockyer, on 08 September 2017 - 07:25 AM, said:

Was chatting to a friend about back pain and his was caused by something very serious indeed. My new advice is go to the Dr :)

I've only had this for a couple of weeks - There's a bit of a correlation in that it's at its worst the day after a gig or rehearsal then gets better for a day or two afterwards. I know that speaking to a doctor would be best - I think I'll get something booked soon if this doesn't go away!

Cheers,

George
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#24 SpondonBassed

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 11:39 AM

View PostSteve Browning, on 08 September 2017 - 09:14 AM, said:

http://basschat.co.u...4/page__st__210

This was an excellent talk at the SE Bash in 2014. I've remembered all of the exercises but must confess I haven't A-framed for a while. Well worth a look.

You have to be vigilant when A-framing wearing your Y-fronts.

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#25 Blink

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 12:18 PM

Posture and strap length. Put you bass on and stand in front of a full length mirror and see if you look natural. If you go to a physio or Osteopath, take you bass with you so that they and see if that is causing your problems.

Also if you tend to stand still and play try moving around a bit.

#26 SpondonBassed

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 12:30 PM

View Postgeoham, on 08 September 2017 - 11:31 AM, said:

I've only had this for a couple of weeks - There's a bit of a correlation in that it's at its worst the day after a gig or rehearsal then gets better for a day or two afterwards. I know that speaking to a doctor would be best - I think I'll get something booked soon if this doesn't go away! Cheers, George

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#27 mrtcat

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 03:05 PM

My Maruszyck Elwood L 5 weighs just 3.4kg (7.5lbs) and is really versatile

Attached File  monthly_09_2017/post-10501-0-06216100-1504883051.jpg   290.26K

That said, i genuinely think core strengthening and fitness could be well worth looking at first as that can improve life in general as well as your playing experience.

#28 geoham

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 04:40 PM

 mrtcat, on 08 September 2017 - 03:05 PM, said:

My Maruszyck Elwood L 5 weighs just 3.4kg (7.5lbs) and is really versatile

21390614_10154688212496372_1938782146_o.jpg

That said, i genuinely think core strengthening and fitness could be well worth looking at first as that can improve life in general as well as your playing experience.


That is a great looking bass... but I agree, probably a good time to be sensible rather than buy another bass!

Edited by geoham, 08 September 2017 - 04:41 PM.

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#29 DarkHeart

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 05:19 PM

My Alpher is seriously light for a 5 string

#30 dmccombe7

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Posted 08 September 2017 - 07:35 PM

I have a Dingwall NG2 5 string and its by far the lightest bass i have.
I was suffering from a shoulder and chest ache last year and tried the duo strap idea for a while. That helped by spreading the load evenly across both shoulders.
Not sure if that would help lower back but was thinking that if weight is on one shoulder you may be twisting the spine a bit to compensate.
Just a theory mind but you can rig up a similar strap by using 2 cheapo straps across each shoulder just to try it.

Failing that i would do the exercise thing and strengthen your core. That usually works for me and then i get lazy again and the aches return and its a vicious cycle :lol:

Few back and stomach exercises should benefit you no matter what.

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