Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

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Catman10
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Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby Catman10 » Wed Nov 29, 2017 1:30 am

I'm having a very frustrating and major problem with the threading for the low-B string on the headpiece of my VB6. Seems that the threading gets stripped out for the set screw at the very top of the slot for the low-B on the second string change because so little of the threading of the headpiece is engaged with the set screw before it begins to have to start putting a lot of pressure on the string. The gauge of string that I use is .130, which is the same as what the instrument is specced with. When I received my VB6, I was able to change the strings once. The second time I changed strings, I had this same problem. Kiesel was nice enough send me another headpiece. I was able to install a set of strings on the bass again. Now I've come to the point of needing to change strings on this VB6 of mine, and now I have the exact same problem again!! Am I the only one out there that is having this problem? To all you VB5 and VB6 owners, do you do anything different when it comes to changing the low-B to keep this from happening?

Yes, I have watched the Vader string changing video on Youtube many times trying to pickup something I'm missing. I do notice in the video that the set screw for that low-B can be turned much more than mine can before it starts to put pressure on the string. With the headpieces I have, the set screw barely gets the first two threads engaged before it really has to grip and start putting pressure on the string.

FWIW, I think the set screw on these Vader basses are way too small, the slot in the headpiece for the low-B way too shallow, the threading of the headpiece much too small, and the metal of the headpiece much too soft. I have a 5-string headless bass from an independent luthier for the past 17 yrs.with the exact same style of headpiece mechanically, except the set screws are much larger and I have never had a problem with it changing strings!

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brento73
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby brento73 » Mon Dec 11, 2017 5:18 am

Hmm.... any updates on this? I was thinking about a Vader in the future, but this makes me a little hesitant.

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Catman10
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby Catman10 » Wed Dec 13, 2017 4:33 am

brento73 wrote:Hmm.... any updates on this? I was thinking about a Vader in the future, but this makes me a little hesitant.


Sorry “brento73”, no real updated per say. I did request a headpiece be sent, but I have yet to see it. I like the sound and feel of my VB6 a lot, but if can’t either find a solution to this issue or get a solution to it I’m going to have to just repair it and get rid of it. :(

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Catman10
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby Catman10 » Thu Dec 28, 2017 4:23 am

After requesting a replacement headpiece about a month ago, it finally arrived. Lo and behold it looks as if there has been a change in the set or anchor screws. They have made them larger from 3/32 to a 1/8, and the threading is different. That’s great!! Now they just need to send me out one for a right-handed instrument!!! :roll:

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tbonesullivan
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby tbonesullivan » Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:47 pm

ARGH. Sounds like a design issue. Hopefully once they get you the right handed piece, it'll be solved.

There were issues like this on earlier Schaller-made Floyd Rose bridges. The base plates were not hardened steel, though they did have steel insert knife edges, so the bolts for the saddles could strip out easily. Eventually they changed the saddle adjustment holes to have hardened steel inserts.
Guitars: Bolt in Electric Blue, Cobalt 750T
Basses: B4A in classic sunburst , B5 in sunsetburst, XB75 in TPB, PB4 in Blue Burst, LB70F in Pearl blue

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Catman10
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby Catman10 » Sat Jan 06, 2018 12:48 pm

When I saw the incorrect headpiece that Kiesel sent me had been updated with larger anchor screws, I got this hair-brained idea to drill out and tap the original headpiece that I have lying around to fit larger anchor screws just like the updated one, with the glimmer of hope that I could use my VB6 (which has been unusable for over a month). So, go through all the bother but there are other issues with that idea and now I’m back at the mercy of Kiesel to send me the correct headpiece. But with all the bother I’ve gone through I’ve got a good mind to go ahead and sell it as soon as it’s fixed because I seriously doubt the updated headpiece is going to solve the problem of anchoring the low-B string, and that’s an absolute shame because this VB6 I have is a great sounding and playing instrument and it’s going to keep me away from trying the new “Zeus” model as well because it will be equipped with the same problematic hardware as the Vader, more than likely. I would love to trade my VB6 in for an X64 equipped the same way, but I know Kiesel won’t go for that. I think Kiesel needs to change the headpiece to closer resemble the one I have made by an independent luthier because I’ve owned that bass for almost 18 years and not once have I had a problem with the anchor screw for any of the strings!! :wall: :? :soapbox:

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Greg Emm
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Re: Problems with the headpiece on my VB6.

Postby Greg Emm » Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:56 pm

Thanks for posting about your VB experience, Catman. I'm sorry to hear that this matter has yet to come to a satisfactory conclusion. Though I'd love to get a Zeus or Vader six-string bass, your experience with the headless mechanism makes that possibility less and less likely. Your candor is greatly appreciated, but it stinks that you've had to deal with this situation. I'm impressed with Kiesel's responsiveness, though.

Thanks again.


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