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ENDPIN: Replacing the rubber endpin tip on a Kay/Engelhardt or other bass
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.
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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!)

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ATA Flight Cases for Acoustic Image Combos and Speakers
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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...
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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!


We now have replacement endpin covers for Kay and Engelhardt stock 1/2" endpins. They are an upgrade to the stock "crutch-tip" style rubber cap provided by Engelhardt, with a reinforcing washer to protect from tip "poke-through", and have a nice, grippy bottom surface.

Click on over and check it out!

This FAQ still applies, even though we now carry a good replacement tip. The "doubled up" method that Bob advocates below still works great on his own personal Kay bass!

I get a lot of calls for replacement rubber tips for the unique Kay and Engelhardt endpins. They are 1/2" shafts, which is unusual in the upright bass world, and for years, when the tip wore out, I bought boxes of crutch tips. They work, but they really don't last that long, so I was always in search of a better solution. For a quickie, you can pick up 1/2" rubber tips at most hardware stores. But I have some alternative suggestions.

But first, an opinion... if you are in an environment where the floor can be sacrificed, removing the rubber tip and digging in with the point can be a good thing for your sound, to couple with the floor. They aren't pointy by accident! In some cases, however, such as a hollow stage with a flexible floor, it may make it more boomy, which may or may not be a good thing.

If you have a contemporary Engelhardt, the endpin may have a crossbar that prevents you from losing the pin inside the bass, as shown in the photo at left. Consider cutting or grinding them off so you can put the pointy end inside the bass and the blunt end outside. Your rubber tips will last a lot longer. Alternatively, some metal washers or a metal disk can be placed inside the tip so the sharp point won't pierce the rubber tip.

My solution for a more robust tip is a simple and inexpensive (cheap Bob!!) one. The larger the tip, the more rubber, so I went to a local hardware store and bought TWO types of tips.

  • a 1/2" (13mm) Vinyl Furniture Tip (Ace Hardware ACE 5015623 or equivalent)
  • a 5/8" (16mm) Rubber Straight Tip (Ace Hardware ACE 51239 or equivalent)
The tip shown between the packages in the photo is the original Engelhardt rubber tip, which you can see is smaller. The rubber is also softer.

First, slip the slim vinyl 1/2" tip on the pin, and then force the 5/8" rubber tip over it, as shown in the photo at right. This results in a much more robust tip that lasts 2-3 times longer in my experience. I've seen these same tips at other hardware stores, usually in a four-pack, and I seem to remember they ran around $4-6 a pack.

I've also begun to put a metal nut at the base of the first rubber tip, just large enough to keep the sharp tip of the pin from penetrating the rubber. I've used a little adhesive to keep it in position in the tip. This makes the whole arrangement last longer.

This idea can be used on other bass endpins, just adjust the rubber tip sizes to handle your bass, and also see if you can remove and use the dull end of the pin with a rubber tip.

Hope this helps!

Addendum- Adam Tervort suggests checking out the rubber tips used for drum hardware, as they are made of a more durable rubber.

Jeff Lind says, "FYI, Vario hiking poles makes a rubber tip for its sticks that is perfect for a Kay 1/2" end pin shaft. They are better than anything Kay ever sold." Bill Burke also concurs: "The Vario hiking pole tips really do fit the Kay endpin perfectly."

Your suggestions are welcome, too!

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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