Dingwall Combustion 5 Indigoburst, Maple f/b, UK, USA, EU Black p/g Dingwall Bass Guitars:: Custom hand made basses, exclusively at Bassdirect, Warwick, Fan Fret, Novax, Birmingham, London, Manchester


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Dingwall Combustion 5 Vintageburst, Quilt Maple top, Gig bag



Weight: 5/3 - 3.8kg/8lb 6oz

Please call or email if you wish to pay by Bank Transfer or finance

  1. Export price £1542/£1375

  2. Please contact us for international shipping rates

  1. Since the 1990s Dingwall guitars have been at the forefront of custom bass design and are the leading users of "fan fret" technology, now considered to be the one of the best ways of getting an improved low B sound from a bass guitar. By having a shorter length of scale for the higher strings and a longer scale for the lower strings you get a more even string tension and thus a tighter overall sound. The new 2019 bass includes new slimmer neck profile, 3 band EMG preamp, 4 way pickup selector, Neodymium pickups and new mono bridge saddles

  1. Please click on images to enlarge

Since the 1990s Dingwall guitars have been at the forefront of custom bass design and are the leading users of "fan fret" technology, now considered to be the one of the best ways of getting an improved low B sound from a bass guitar. By having a shorter length of scale for the higher strings and a longer scale for the lower strings you get a more even string tension and thus a tighter overall sound.

Time after time players are amazed at how easy and intuitive fan frets feel to play - most admit that it is actually easier and more natural. This ease of playing combined with a stunning built and cool contemporary design makes the Combustion a really superb bass!

The Combustion is a break-through in terms of performance per £. By combining North American sourced materials and components with Chinese manufacturing we now offer many of the Dingwall tone and performance advantages at an extremely affordable price. Final set up and inspection is done in the Dingwall shop in Canada so you know the basses will play great right out of the box.

  1. Combustion Series II Specifications:
  2. New Dingwall made in Canada FD3n Neodymium pickups

  3. EMG USA BT07 3-band pre-amp

  4. Dingwall USA strings - buy HERE

  5. Swamp ash body

  6. Quilt Maple top

  7. Maple Fingerboard with rolled edges - 37 - 34" scale

  8. Bone nut

  9. Banjo frets

  10. NOVAX® FANNED-FRET SYSTEM™ (see below)

  11. Five piece maple neck - truss rod adjustment now at body end

  12. Rotary 4 way pickup selector for 2 pickup bass (bridge, both parallel, both series, neck) for 3 pickup bass see below

  13. Select hardware

  14. Dingwall Deluxe Gig bag

  15. Manufactured in China

  16. Final set up at Dingwall Shop in Canada

  17. Weight: approx 9lb/4kg


Tel: 01926 886433

Nine months interest free credit on up to £5000 on Instrument purchases! For UK residents aged between 16 and 25.



The new Neodymium pickups on the Combustion give a wider, flatter response with more natural low and high with beautifully detailed mid range frequencies.


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.


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.


The Combustion features dual volumes and an EMG BT 2-band active pre-amp. The volume/volume set up allows for subtle blending between pickups with less loading effect than a blend control. The EMG BT preamp is a wonderfully smooth sounding pre-amp with ultra low noise performance and great battery life, and for 2011 features an active/passive switch.

Submitted on the 11th April 2012 by John Mitchell who purchased a Dingwall Combustion

Dear Mark,


It has been three weeks since I purchased the Dingwall Combustion from you and I would like to say how pleased I have been with it.  Right from the word go I found it easy to play, even though it is probably one of the longest scale bass guitars in normal production.  The fanned frets are not a problem, but I found at first that I had to take a little care where playing above the 12th fret, as one starts to go "uphill" across from the B to the G string.  This no longer presents a problem.  The bridge(s), nut, and fan fret design raises a lot of questions from other musicians! 


Lastly, please may I thank you for the rapid and safe delivery of my bass, well within 16 hours!


Yours Sincerely,


John Mitchell.

Dingwall Combustion 5

Bass Guitar Magazine Review 2010

Dingwall’s new Combustion range offers the same pickups and electronics as the company’s bona fide models but in a more affordable package. Nick Wells gets the low-down.

Sheldon Dingwall’s intriguing bass designs are unmistakable. The Canadian company has amassed a range of bass models, including the exotic Prima and Prima Artist designs, the Z series and the Fender-inspired Super-J line, each incorporating a range of unusual and innovative ideas.

The Combustion is Dingwall’s latest and most affordable model to date and sees production outsourced to the Far East. The pickups are still made in-house and shipped, along with an EMG preamp, Dingwall-designed

GHS strings and Korean-made hardware, to China where each bass is assembled to Dingwall’s exact specifications before arriving back at company HQ in Saskatoon, Canada, for a final check and set-up.

With Canadian-made Dingwall basses retailing for upwards of £2,500, the Combustion seems a sure way of making these increasingly sought-after instruments more accessible.

Body & Neck

The Combustion is modelled on Dingwall’s Afterburner bass and exhibits the same non-traditional body shape. The slanted frets may seem a little unnatural at first, but the Combustion isn’t as complicated to play as it looks. It’s compact and lightweight, making for a bass that’s comfortable to wear and beautifully balanced. The alder body has an Olympic white finish that’s a little opaque, with the grain and darker colouration of the alder clearly visible, lending the body a blue/pinkish hue.

The five-piece maple neck is securely attached via four bolts and features a player-friendly profile with well-rounded edges. The rosewood board employs Ralph Novak’s fanned fret system and a 34–37” scale spread (the scale length of the B string is three inches longer than the G). This system is designed to achieve the optimum scale length for each string, creating a more even string tension and allowing each string to respond

in the same way. The spaces between the frets are greater for the lower-pitched strings than they are for the higher, with only the seventh fret resembling anywhere close to being straight. The design may be unfamiliar, but it takes no time at all to adjust your technique, and navigating the fretboard feels completely natural almost immediately.


Like the fanned frets, the Dingwall FD3N pickups are also slanted. Dingwall pickups are made in-house using neodymium magnets, but for the Combustion, Dingwall have favoured alnico magnets, making this the first

Dingwall bass to do so. The pickups are wired to an EMG BT07 two-band preamp, along with master volume and blend controls. The active circuit is powered by a single 9V battery housed in an individual flip-top compartment on the rear side of the body. The Combustion comes strung with a set of Dingwall-designed

GHS strings, anchored in place by the company’s innovative bridge design, which sees each string effectively anchored in its own individual bridge unit. This design is intended to deliver better separation between the strings and improved tonal clarity.


Having spent a few minutes adjusting to the slanted pickups when looking for somewhere to rest your thumb, it’s no exaggeration to say that the Combustion has an evenness and balance across all five strings that’s immediately noticeable. The B string, in particular, feels right at home alongside the other strings, making it easy to move from string to string without altering your note attack or playing position. The B string remains musical and well defined throughout its range, and the sounds remain well balanced as you move through the higher register, with each string responding to your technique in the same way. With such an articulate low register we had our reservations about playing higher up the neck, but thankfully the G string offers the same spectrum of tones that you would expect, without sounding at all thin or edgy. Varying the scale length of each string really does seem to work. High-register chords sing out with a natural clarity, though the spacing between the frets will take a little longer to get to grips with as

you progress past the 12th fret. Played in a number of different band settings through both combos and amp and cab set-ups, the Combustion gave the same solid performance. In terms of playability it scores very highly

indeed, and the sounds on offer are versatile and remarkably well balanced, making for a fantastic all-rounder. But sometimes it’s the irregularities that give a bass its own sound, and we couldn’t help but yearn for a little more grit and tonal character. Overall, you can’t ignore just how playable this bass is. The Combustion is undoubtedly one for the modern-day player and will perform well in a range of different genres.


The Novax fanned frets and distinctive body outline will undoubtedly set the Combustion apart from other models in this price range. But the innovative fret design is just the beginning with this bass. The intricacies inherent in the overall design serve as a fine example of Sheldon Dingwall’s ability to take complex ideas and

make them feel like second nature. Creating a bass where the scale of the B string is three inches longer than the G isn’t easy, yet as complicated as it may look, the Combustion is effortless to play. With manufacturing outsourced to China, Dingwall have managed to lower production costs, which will be a real bonus for those on

a budget. And given that each instrument is set up back at Dingwall HQ in Canada, there is extra peace of mind for those who remain sceptical about Far Eastern manufacturing. Overall, the Combustion succeeds in bringing the precision and innovations of Dingwall guitars a little closer to the bassist on a budget. Love or hate the look,auditioning any Dingwall bass will be an experience you’ll remember.

Technical Specification

Dingwall Combustion

Price: £1,200

Finish: Olympic white

Body: Alder

Neck: 5-piece maple neck, bolt-on

Fingerboard: Rosewood

Pickups: 2 x Dingwall FD3-A

Controls: 1 x volume, 1 x pickup

pan, 2-band EMG active EQ

Made in: China

Nut width: 45.5 mm (1.8 inches)

Scale length: 939.8–864 mm

(37–34 inches)

Frets: 24, Novax fanned-fret system

Weight: 3.85 kg (8.48 lb)

Contact Details

Bass Direct

Tel: 01926 886433

Web: www.bassdirect.co.uk


What we think

Plus: Broad spectrum of bass sounds coupled with superb playability.

Minus: Looks won’t appeal to everyone.

Overall: An innovative design that succeeds in delivering the essence of Sheldon Dingwall’s upmarket instruments in a more affordable package.

Customer feedback submitted on the 14th August 2010 by Stephen Talbot who purchased a Dingwall Combustion bass in Sunburst

After looking at 5 string basses in about 10 shops all over the north west of England I had virtually given up on finding one that I could play.

I contacted bassdirect asking if they had any suitable for 'really short fingers'. After a couple of emails I decided to go and have a look . . .

Wow what a shop.

As one of the previous guys here said; it certainly is an aladdin's cave of all things bass.

Their staff are professional and obviously know their stuff. Not only did they have 6 or 7 basses that suited me straight off(I am sure they had more but I had already decided what I wanted) - I ended up buying a Dingwall which is awesome and I WAS a Warwick only man till my visit.

Thanks Mark for great advice and really good gear, the Dingwall and Bassdirect are both great.

I look forward to doing business with you in the future.