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If i had an guitar, could i change the first 4 strings to bass stings and take off the last 2 to make an bass?

I recently picked up a full sized acoustic guitar from some place that was by the road. So i fixed it up and put all six new guitar strings on it. But i figure since i have an acoustic guitar, as well as an electric guitar, already, i might as well make the junker into a acoustic bass guitar. Would it be as simple as taking off the last two strings and putting on four bass strings instead of guitar strings? What is the standard tuning for bass? And one more question, if i sanded down all the frets so they were flush with the fretboard and then refinished the fret board, would it then become a fretless with the lines so i could tell where the frets were if i needed them?

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RelaxedSoup7 years ago
Bass frets are farther apart (and most basses have 24 frets), so you'd have some difficulty playing it even if you did restring it. Also, acoustic guitars generally have higher action than a standard electric guitar, contributing to playing difficulties. You could do some work on the bridge and the nut to make it accommodate bass strings, you could also make it into a 5 or 6 sting bass (I play a 5 sting bass). Also, bass guitars have a different type of machine head, they have a notch in the middle of each peg, I assume it's to accommodate the bigger strings. The stress of the strings on the bridge might also mess things up, but you could always reinforce it.

Standard tuning for a 4 sting bass is E-A-D-G, and for a 5 string it's B-E-A-D-G, I'm not sure about a 6 string. You'd have to replace the acoustic stings with bass strings, otherwise it'd sound like total crap. Tuning down normal stings by a few octaves generally doesn't work out well.

Also, about the fret board, good luck sanding down metal frets... you could remove the frets, and fill in the gaps with epoxy or the like. I'd recommend trying it all out whilst being sure to make any changes reversible, before making any changes to the fretboard.

Just ignore the people below, they obviously suffer from poor self esteem or just don't like do-it-yourselfers, go ahead and try it out and see what happens! (Although don't blame me if you screw it up, it was a free guitar after all). Good luck, I hope this helps.
Well, actually, 5-string basses are E-A-D-G-B, and six-strings are just like guitars, but an octave lower.
To the contrary, a 5 string bass really is tuned B-E-A-D-G, I have one sitting 5 feet from me as proof. Also, 6 string basses are tuned B-E-A-D-G-C. If you don't believe me, here's proof <<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bass_guitar#Strings_and_tuning">link</a>>.<br />
 that is cool i am also a bass player what kind do you have ibanez, fender, dean.....?
I stand corrected; although, to my relief, the article does note that E-A-D-G-B tuning is common as well. That's all they have at Guitar Source and Guitar Center, so I assumed that was the most common.
peach_fart6 years ago
no. the tension from th guitar strings is about 200 psi. bass strings are much thicker, and need more force to bring up to concert pitch. even if you could avoid the guitar snapping or buckling, the string holes in the bridge would be too small for the basses much larger string ends, and the string holes in the tuners would be too small. also, the scale length and string spacing on a bass are bigger than that of a guitar. this would not work without heavy modification to the body and string related hardware, and a major neck overhaul to handle the stress.
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Actually, I'd say that if it were an electric guitar you'd have a shot. A change of pickups and removal of frets, as well as fitting it with bass strings does yield a usable instrument (not perfect, but at least good for fun). The acoustic guitar body is simply not built for a bass guitar sound. It's going to sound terrible. Still, if it's a junk guitar... it might be worth experimenting with. Just do things in stages, and try to save the non-reversible things for last.
acidbass7 years ago
 no the electric put out a higher pitched sound 
timgray7 years ago
Oh yeah, the neck is fine too
timgray7 years ago
several years ago I converted a cheapo acoustic. Bass machine heads and a bass nut was all I had to buy. I had to experiment with the strings, some fat ones off a guitar and skinny bass ones.(Wish I could remember!) The body is beginning to buckle after 7 or 8 years, several climate changes and one hole kicked in the side, but its still a very playable instrument. Frets file down easily, they're pretty soft metal, I just popped mine off with a pocket knife, no need to fill in the slots. I highly recommend anyone with a "spare acoustic guitar to do this, mine sounds awesome!
my friend and ex band mate asked me the same question and i see noone has put down you'd fave to change the tuners and yes it would f**k up the neck and could potentionaly break the body just by a bass.
guitars are designed to withhold the tension guitar strings put on the neck(properly tuned) if you did this, you could potentially screw up your guitar it would be better to just buy a bass
The Jamalam7 years ago
You'd need neck strength; the bass guitar strings are much thicker than your average nylon/steel/nickel strings. You'd almost certainly need to fit some kind of truss rod.
oddmidge7 years ago
I think that bass strings on an acoustic guitar might put a lot more pressure on the neck, it would sound horrible. If you're willing to try I'd love to know how it goes.I'd
PyroMaster007 (author)  oddmidge7 years ago
i think i will. thanks!
oddmidge7 years ago
You're grammar was worse than his, you know that your only supposed to use one question mark per question. 'Cuz' is actually 'cause or because. Learn some grammar whilst your at it.
Wolf Seril7 years ago
Learn some spelling and punctuation before you criticize someone's grammar.