The Bass

Written by Patrick Podpadec on . Posted in Bass Guitars

This Bass was custom built in 2004 for bassist Tony Coladengelo

tony's bass

I always love building something new and a little different than what might be commercially available. The criteria for this bass was the customer wanted an EB- 1 Gibson style carved arch top, semi hollow body.

This is a copy of a bass built by Gibson in the 70’s. The difference is that Gibson made this style bass with a 30" scale length and this one has a full 34" scale. My client loved the shape and style of the EB series , but had a few other design requests that he wanted me to build into the bass. I was also given the oppurtunity to use some of my own designs such as the "ying yang" soundholes and the shape of the headstock. This instrument is the first one made that has the "Liam" logo on it. Some of the custom features of this bass include :







  • 5 pc. Laminated through the body neck ( for ultimate sustain )
  • Butternut back & sides
  • Flamed maple neck
  • Block inlays w/custom Chinese engravings
  • Unique “ying yang” sound holes
  • Ebony laminate on back of headstock
  • My son’s name on the headstock (how cool is that?)
  • Gibson E-B2 Body Shape
  • Flamed Maple Carved Top
  • 5 pc. Laminated neck
  • Flamed Maple Headstock Veneer
  • Ebony/maple/ebony backplate veneer
  • Kenpo Karate Crest Inlay
  • Custom Block inlays
  • Bone Nut
  • White plastic bindings
  • Cherry Red Nitrocellouse Finish
  • Butternut wood access panel    


This is a view of the Karate crest for the Do Jo that my customer belongs to. It was cut from a green abalone lam. The "Liam" was done with mother of pearl

  Here are a few pictures of building process. Unfortunetly there are not as many pics as I would have liked. It was early on in my building process and I actually forgot to take pictures.

  There is a 5 piece lamination all the way through the body with a curly maple carved top. The body section is butternut that has had large holes drilled out foto reduce the weight and to appear to be a hollow body. Most of the sections around the "F" holes are hollow . A 1/4" thick lamination of butternut was glued to the back and then carvrd to match the front.  The fingerboard is bubinga with large block pearl inlayys with Japanese symbols engraved into each one.


This is the back of the headstock. I laminated it with a layer of B/W/B .023 venniers. It comes out looking pretty cool when you put a bevel to the edge.

liam headstock




This the head stock after I have bound it with  a b/w/b purfling with a .090 white platic binding and the pearl inlay 


I think I might have used every clamp I owned at the time to glue this up. I know it was about 48 inches long



 Here's another shot at the neck through lamination


Here you can see the 5 piece neck lamination and the how the black fiber really looks good against the tranparent cherry red toner




This is one of the symbols that I engraved in the pearl inlays


You can see how pretty the curly maple is before it has it's cherry red finish



In this picture you can see how I had to build up the thickness on the top binding to match the carved top