Dingwall Bass Guitars:: Afterburner ABII, Bubinga top, Chambered walnut body, Extender key, Novax fan fret system :: Custom hand made basses, exclusively at Bassdirect

 

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Dingwall ABII 6 string - SOLD

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  1. Export price from £2370 - Shipping costs (from): USA £100, Australia £100, Mainland EU £30

  2. This is a unique bass made for Bass Direct featuring a figured Bubinga top over a lightweight chambered Walnut body with a stunning translucent red finish. A wenge fingerboard adorns the slim bubinga neck. The tone is balanced and punchy with great authority to the low end and smooth airy high end. The B string has the usual clarity along the whole length of the fingerboard and the balance across the strings is perfect. A six bass for players looking to advance.

  3. Actual instrument shown, please click on images to enlarge.








  1. BulletABII Six String

  2. BulletFigured Bubinga top

  3. BulletTrans Red gloss finish

  4. BulletWalnut chambered body

  5. BulletWenge fingerboard - 24 frets

  6. BulletBubinga neck with dual carbon fibre spars - satin finish

  7. Bullet2 x FD-3/Mach II 4L pickups

  8. BulletGlockenklang 2 band preamp, Volume, Pickup selector (Bridge, both parallel, both series, Neck)

  9. BulletActive/Passive switching on volume

  10. BulletBlack Custom Bridge, Black Hipshot ultralight tuners

  11. BulletWeight - 3.9kg/8lb 9oz

  12. BulletGig bag and tools

  13. BulletBuy Dingwall five string sets HERE


Talkbass Dingwall owners club HERE,   Dingwall Forum HERE


The build quality of this bass is very impressive and the finish is faultless. With a combination of the custom Dingwall pickups and the Glockenklang preamp you have lots of control over the unbelievable variety of tones that this bass is capable of. The fan fret neck is a joy to play and totally intuitive and the scale length is 37" on the B string and 34" on the G string but feels comfortable and relatively compact. The strings ring with piano like clarity and command with unprecedented clarity on the low notes and almost perfect balance across the strings. Favoured by artists like David Swift and Lee Sklar, Dingwall bass guitars really are that good.


CORE WOOD – WALNUT (SEMI-HOLLOW) ON AFTERBURNER II

Walnut sounds very similar to Alder, but with more clarity, sustain and punch. We reduce the weight and increase the resonance by adding strategic tone chambers throughout the body.


FD-3 4L PICKUPS ON AFTERBURNER SERIES

The FD-3 line of pickups are the direct decendents of the (F)ury (D)ingwall-1 pickups originally co-developed by Glenn MacDougall of Fury Guitar and Sheldon Dingwall. Glenn has a 40+ year career designing and building guitar and bass pickups.  We take pride in our close association with both Bartolini in the past and Fury as they are among the greatest pickup designers and makers on the planet.


The FD-3 pickups feature powerful neodymium magnets, humcancelling matched-pair coils, hardened steel pole pieces and are fully shielded for ultra quiet performance. Their tone can best be described as a blend between a J and a P but with more highs, more lows and more dynamic response. The most current versions feature 4-lead wiring which enables the internal coils to be wired in either series for strong mids and high output or parallel for scooped mids and normal output.


ELECTRONICS ON AFTERBURNER II

Rotary switch
All Dingwall basses (except Combustion) feature a 4-position rotary pickup selector. The pickup combinations are bridge pickup soloed, both in parallel, both in series, neck pickup soloed.

Pre-amp

In the past we’ve used Bartolini, Aguilar and now Glockenklang pre-amps.  These are all top-notch, high-quality pre-amps. What we like about the Glockenklang pre-amps is the smooth and subtle tone shaping and the Active/Passive treble control. We’ve spent a lot of time perfecting the natural tone of our basses so that they don’t need a lot of tone adjustment. The Glockenklang really fits well with this philosophy. The Active treble boosts and cuts as expected in active mode but when the pre-amp is switched to passive mode, the control is switched to a passive cut control. This is essentially like having two basses with two distinct characters. One active and one passive.


NECK CONSTRUCTION ON ABII

We take neck construction very seriously due to our extensive experience in guitar repairs coupled with our geographic location and corresponding extreme climate.  In my years in the guitar repair business I constantly had to deal with humidity related problems made worse by the huge temperature and humidity swings of our local climate. Many of these problems could have been minimised through simple design changes and materials choices.


Touring musicians are constantly amazed at how stable Dingwall instruments are.  Many state that their Dingwall necks are as stable as their graphite necked instruments. We’ve experimented with many different laminations and have found a 5-piece maple construction to be among the best. Years of experience have proven this design to be extremely stable and reliable while minimising dead spots.


FRETS ON AFTERBURNER

We use 18% hard nickel silver fretwire.  Lee Sklar turned us onto the benefits of small frets. The advantages are a more woody, less metallic tone, smoother glissandos and a faster feel.  Our standard size is “banjo” size.  This is the same size as you’d find on most guitars from the 50’s and 60’s. Although its size is smaller than standard bass fretwire, its service life is about the same.


FINGERBOARD SPECIFICATIONS

Wenge (Wen-gay) on Afterburner II
This is an interesting fretboard wood due to the alternating layers of hard and soft wood (early and late wood).  The hard grain gives the tone a nice top end similar to ebony and the soft grain adds the warmth of Rosewood.  It’s a great all around fingerboard wood.








Submitted on the 19th November 2011 by Martin who purchased an Dingwall ABII 5 string and Genz Benz Neox 212T and Genz Benz Shuttle 12 Max amplifier

Hi Mark,


Totally stunned by the clarity of the AB2 through the Genz Benz  rig at rehearsal last night.


Thanks for your help and advice.


Cheers


Martin



Dingwall

Afterburner II 6-String Bass

Fanned frets, six strings, chambered body, 37” scale on the B string...

Doesn’t sound like a run-of-the-mill bass. Mike Brooks checks out

this custom instrument to see what it’s capable of.


Dingwall basses were a rare breed on these shores but some prominent marketing and wider availability have meant that us Brits have finally had the opportunity to sample the delights of Sheldon Dingwall’s bass creations.

The Dingwall brand has been associated with the Novax fanned-fret design for some time, yet on paper this particular model should be a beast of an instrument with a 37” scale length and a wide six-string fingerboard to contend with. So is this merely a feature-laden example that looks better than it plays, or is the sum greater than the individual parts?


Build Quality

The ABII is an impressive instrument to behold, but any weight expectations are dispelled immediately, in part by the chambered walnut body, while the grain of the bubinga top is clearly visible through the gloss coated, translucent-red body finish. Not only do the f-holes improve the acoustic resonance, they also add a touch of class to the bass’s appearance. The smooth curves and sensible body styling are very much in tune with the feeling of quality that this bass offers; extending the rear-body contouring all the way across the top of the body to the end of the top horn means that the bass sits snugly against the player’s body.

The neck profile is extremely slim, almost a prerequisite considering the width of the fingerboard, and traversing the neck is made even easier by the smooth, silk-like satin finish. Six-string basses can be a little daunting, but Dingwall have tried to make this bass highly playable, even down to the positioning of the front-facing position marker at the bottom of the fingerboard facing and using larger than normal markers on the top edge. The fourbolt neck attachment is tight, using countersunk hex bolts, and the neck joint is sculpted, resulting in less bulk to the joint. Dual carbon-fibre spars have been inserted into the neck to maintain neck rigidity, and the overall level of finishing is top drawer throughout.

The hardware and electronics reinforce the air of quality, and rather than settle for ‘off the- shelf’ solutions, Dingwall have developed their own component designs in tandem with recognised component manufacturers to solve problems. Black hardware is the order of the day and modified Hipshot Ultralite machine heads (lighter than the originals!) have been used, making a string tree redundant, due to them being counter-bored into the flat headstock facing. Hipshot also developed the bridge, and although string-spacing adjustments are not an option (set at 18mm), the bridge has been designed to offer maximum sustain and stability. The FD-3 4L soapbar pickups are in-house-designed units featuring neodymium magnets and offering a blend of single and split-coil characteristics with a greater frequency response, and these have been coupled with a Glockenklang two-band EQ circuit. The control layout is relatively simple, comprising volume, pickup selector (bridge pickup, both pickups in parallel, both pickups in series, neck pickup), and bass and treble controls offering cut and boost. The volume control has a push/ pull function that switches the bass into passive mode, with the treble control acting as a passive cut control. A Neutrik locking jack socket is recessed into the lower-body bout, and a quick peek into the control cavity showed that it was well shielded with all circuit cabling tied back. We also liked the magnetic battery cavity cover.


Playability and Sounds

Although we expected to be checking our fret positioning due to the fanned frets, the opposite occurred. The bass felt easier to play, almost natural, as though we were well accustomed to it, and over an extended period it felt that there was less stress on the fretting hand and wrist. However, some care was taken over finger placement from the

12th fret onwards due to the myriad of notes at our disposal. There is a headstock bias due to the amount of timber used in the neck; however, placed on a strap, the bass balances at a perfectly comfortable angle with good weight distribution. The 18mm string spacing and slim neck profile make this an enjoyable ‘sixer’ to play, while the upper regions of the neck are readily accessible due to the extensive cutaways. The ABII is a lively, resonant bass with a definite spring in its tonal step. Spending some time with it shows that it readily responds to the player’s technique, whether digging in or applying a softer fingerstyle touch. The weight of attack also affects the overall tone, but the circuit and tone-shaping options mean that the player can move from a gritty, aggressive tone to a smoother, delicate tone with a minor adjustment of the controls. We were surprised by the lack of mid EQ on a bass of this calibre, but it’s clear that this bass has no need for it as its natural tone displays a mid bias giving it a clear presence. The individual pickups carry the usual traits expected of their positioning, but it was the parallel/series options that created most interest. The parallel setting is by far the most

conventional ‘all-round’ tone on offer, with a warm, round character; yet on switching to the series setting, the signal is far more powerful with more honk and grit to the tone, making fingerstyle passages more distinct and defined, and this setting also opens up the tones from the low B string. Switching to passive mode, the signal is still louder than most passive basses, which is very impressive, with no degradation in the bass’s unique voice or ‘bark’.

Conclusion

There is no doubting the pedigree and overall quality of this instrument; what is surprising is that it took this long for Dingwall instruments to become popular over here. The craftsmanship and obvious forethought that have gone into the design and construction of this bass are there for all to see, and despite the sizeable price tag it is clear where your money is going. The sonic performance is quite outstanding and we have no hesitation in saying that the high-quality parts and features have created a fantastic all-round package. Very impressive!

Mike Brooks

etails

Dingwall Afterburner II 6-String Bass

Price: £2,845

Colour: Translucent red

Body: Walnut body with bubinga top

Neck: Bubinga

Fingerboard: Wenge

Pickups: 2 x FD-3/Mach II 4L pickups

Electronics: Glockenklang 2-band, (bass/treble) active preamp

Controls: Volume, pickup selector (bridge, parallel, series, neck), bass, treble

Tuners: Custom Hipshot/Dingwall Ultralite design

Bridge: Custom Hipshot/Dingwall design

Made in: Canada

Nut width: 53mm

Neck join: Bolt-on, 4-screw attachment

Scale length: 37” (940mm) for the B

string, 34” (864mm) for the E string

Frets: 24

Weight: 3.9kg (8lb 9oz)

Case/gig bag included: Yes, gig bag

Left-hand model available: Yes, as a custom order

Plus: Quality workmanship and top-notch design have resulted in a 6-string that looks fantastic, plays amazingly well and totally sounds the part.

Minus: Hefty price tag, and there is no getting away from the large neck dimensions, although this is one of the most playable 6-stringers out there.

Overall: A very impressive instrument; its eventual owner will be one very happy bassist!


Issue 64 Bass Guitar Magazine June 2012





 

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