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WHEELS: Upright Bass Wheels
Recent News and Updates
Pro Chairs are coming back (FINALLY!)
We've worked out the distribution problems that made it tough to get the Professional Folding Performance Stools for a (long) while -- and we'll be receiving a couple pallets' worth of them in the next few days (hopefully by Oct 16). If you've been waiting for these as anxiously as we have, now is the time to order! We'll have them right out the door the same day they arrive.
Brand New Acoustic Image "Mini Clarus" Amps in Stock!
The new Clarus SL and SL-R amps are in stock -- they're amazing; tiny, under 3 lbs, pushing 650w of transparent sound through the speaker setup of your choice. With the new "Flex" style preamp, 4 bands of EQ, high- and low-impedance inputs, and a built-in DI, what more could you ask for? And they fit into our cool gig bag, which you can add for just $20 (see below!)

Recently Added Products
ATA Flight Cases for Acoustic Image Combos and Speakers
ATA Flight Cases for Acoustic Image Combos and Speakers
We've finally sourced custom cases, specially made for traveling/touring with your Acoustic Image combos. Lightweight, ATA-style cases for 1x10 and 2x10 AI combo models are available!
Shadow SH RB-PRO Rockabilly Pro Pickup/Preamp System
Shadow SH RB-PRO Rockabilly Pro Pickup/Preamp System
This new all-in-one pickup solution for Rockabilly features a two-pickup system along with a well-designed blending preamp; designed specifically to get that "click" for rockabilly slap playing, it can also be used for those gigs where a more conventional sound is needed...
SPECIAL EDITION Gollihur Exclusive NXT Traditional Bass by NS Design
SPECIAL EDITION Gollihur Exclusive NXT Traditional Bass by NS Design
All the upgrades for "traditional" sound have already been done for you - and it's even in a cool Gollihur-exclusive color! LIMITED QUANTITIES - pre-order now!
There are wheels available (we sell 'em, too) that can be inserted into the bottom of your bass. They're great - I have certainly appreciated having one when I had to cover long distances between car and gig.

You simply remove the endpin shaft (ok, sometimes it's not "simply" -- some endpins have a crossbar or other mechanism on the inside of the endpin that prevents it from falling out. In that case, you just shove the endpin into the bass, retrieve it from a f-hole, and remove or grind off whatever is preventing its removal.) and slide the wheel's shaft in. Good wheels have a flat side on the shaft that you can orient towards the thumbscrew, so you can use it to keep the wheel locked into the right direction.

It's important to choose the correct shaft size, so you'll probably have to measure the bass' endpin shaft. The most common size is 10mm (about 3/8 inch), followed by 8mm. Kays and Engelhardts with original endpins (all steel, both shaft and the receiver) are 1/2 inch; that size is typically only found on those brands, and keep in mind that some folks remove and replace those endpin mechanisms.

If you don't have a caliper, micrometer, or other device to measure the shaft, there are ways to get around that. My personal favorite is to go out to the garage and grab a few open-ended box wrenches (both SAE and Metric) - find the one that fits around the shaft the most perfectly, and read the size right off the wrench. No mechanic in the family? Get a piece of stiff cardstock or cardboard, and cut a notch in it. Continue to slightly widen that slot until the endpin fits perfectly - then measure the gap with a conventional ruler. Do the measurement with both inches and millimeters; as you can see, shafts are available in both metric and SAE (inches) sizes, and some of the sizes are very close.

Consider the bass and wheel you use; they are designed for use on relatively flat surfaces - but how much "give" there is in the wheel as well as the fragility of the bass still has to be considered. I use one of the less expensive wheels with my Kay because it is a laminated instrument, and while the wheel has some softness to absorb shock, the bass can take the vibration. My carved bass is more fragile and would call for the Gaines' pneumatic wheel, as it offers more shock absorption. Regardless, it's usually best to lift your instrument over rougher surfaces that might transmit too much shock. Please, don't jump the curb!

I like aligning my wheel so my bass rolls sideways-- I lean the bass shoulder into my right shoulder, reach over to grab the case handle or upper bout, and roll forward. You'll get the hang of steering in no time (people usually get out of the way when they see it coming, so who cares?)

Bass Wheel Alternatives:
There are some basses that cannot effectively use an endpin wheel. For instance, some endpins use a retainer thumbscrew that doesn't simply "jut against" the endpin, but rather tightens a collar around the entire endpin. Since this type does not press directly against the flat spot on the wheel's shaft, it cannot prevent the wheel from rotating. This is a bad thing; imagine walking at a good clip, and suddenly the wheel flips sideways. Not good. You might also have a non-removable endpin, or a solid wood non-adjustable one.

Don't worry, there is an option for you: The Bass Buggie (link below) is a small two-wheeled "cart" of sorts that quickly straps onto your bass and makes it as easy to "drive" as a hand-truck. It's one of my favorite products, and it solves most of those issues that make a bass wheel impractical or unusable.

Products Related to This FAQ

The Fine Print: The information contained herein is based on what's in my brain and/or my opinions as of today and is subject to change. Like any topic, a great deal more information could be added—but the intent of these writings is to present easy to understand, quick FAQs, to address common questions and improve the reader's general knowledge. What's written here is by no means the authoritative absolute answer, I am not the world's greatest authority on bass (not even close), or on anything else for that matter. I hope the information and opinions here are helpful to you, that's the point!

I welcome email with dissenting and additional viewpoints that help improve my personal awareness and the content pages. If you have a question that you think belongs here, please let me know.

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