30 thoughts on “Join the Conversation”

  1. Was just with four (or five) Chadwick Folding Basses out at Wintergrass in Washington State. I tried two of them and they were set up great and the tone and volume were great. Very impressive. — Mary

  2. I have a friend who just bought a used Chadwick bass, and it has a carved top with plywood sides. It sounds great! Is the carved top more expensive?

    • The carved top (hybrid) bass is $300 additional. Compared with the laminate bass, hybrids have a little more upper mids in the tone, and slightly more sustain in the upper registers. I haven’t had them in production long enough to fairly evaluate their reliability, but the ones in service now are doing fine. It seems likely to me that the sound of the hybrid would improve over time. The hybrid model is $300 additional.

  3. I am interested in the folding bass. I presently use an EUB because of travel hassles. I did a google search and found your site. Very Impressed!!!
    Al Turner
    Solo Artist and Bassist with Earl Klugh, Bob James, KEM, and others.

    • Hi Al, I began designing a travel bass for myself ten years ago because I was frustrated the options available at the time. EUB’s were around, but none of them looked, felt, or sounded like a real bass. And rental basses were often in bad shape, or had unfamiliar strings/setups. My first design used a removable neck, but it became clear that this design was still bulky for travel, and took an unacceptable amount of time to set up and pack. By using the folding neck design, I could have a real bass, with my set-up, that was ready to play in less than 2 minutes, and could be checked like ordinary luggage. The idea was too good to keep to myself, and now there are hundreds of folding basses traveling all over the world.

    • Hi Al, I can recommend the bass to You. I heard Charlie play it last Tuesday in Switzerland during a concert with Suzy Bogguss and Pat Bergeson, and it sounded fantastic.
      Have fun with the folding bass!

  4. We did around 2000 miles,12 gigs in 14 days around New England, New Hampshire, Boston, Rhode Island, Philadelphia, Brooklyn and New York and the bass was set up and taken down to people’s amazement at every gig.
    It sounded great at every venue and travelling from the UK to the USA was no problem.
    Charlie has developed a great instrument design, built around a good toned bass.
    It is a great talking point and a pleasure to tell people about this instrument.
    Thanks again Charlie from Ian and Margaret in the UK.

  5. Is there any special care needed when taking the bass on a long flight? I guess it is very cold where the baggage is stowed on those planes. I also wonder if I should take a pre-amp with me. I’m new at this traveling and I usually only play acoustically.

    • No special care is required. Unlike a glued-together bass, the back is not a rigid piece. Temperature and humidity changes don’t stress the seams and plates because the body can flex along the lateral plane, relieving the strain caused by wood expansion/contraction.
      I carry a pre-amp since I usually don’t play through an amp. This serves as a buffer for my pickup (the impedance is too high for most DI’s), and gives me some EQ to tailor the sound.
      I use a Fishman Full Circle pickup and a Radial ToneBone PZ Pre on the road.

  6. I’ve been playing the electric bass for about a decade now, and I’d like to graduate to the upright later this year, (after I get out of the Marine Corps and rotate home for good). Do you recommend this as my first upright to own? I just can’t get over the ingenious design. It looks as though you’ve managed to take away all the hassle in transporting a double bass. Also, would I be able to get guide dots placed on the fingerboard?

    • Hi Greg, I started on electric bass too, and remember that it took a while to transition to upright. The wider note spacings were a challenge, and the right hand position also had to be shifted, wiping out years of technique. I used Franz Simandl’s method books to learn how to move up and down the neck and still stay in tune.
      The folding bass is a great upright bass for beginners or pros, built from a Shen SB-100, one of the finest production basses made. For many of my customers, this is their only upright. It’s a standard bass in every way, except my modification, which allows it to fold up in less than 2 minutes.
      I can place position markers on the side of the fingerboard, and they are no extra charge. I can also do custom inlays if you have something fancier in mind.
      I look forward to building one for you.

  7. Hey guys. I’m in Pittsburgh (PA) and would like to play on one of these before buying. I have an amazing bass but it’s my orchestral instrument and I can’t risk taking it everywhere I go. The Chadwick will become my primary instrument, as I’m playing more in other genres than classically. Considering it took more than a year of trying instruments to buy the one I have, I need to make sure it’s comfortable and what I want.

    Anyone in the region have one I could try out and play on for a few hours? Happy to travel out a couple of hours to do so.

    Many thanks!

    • The bass has an ordinary sound post except that there is a short pin in either end that prevents the post from falling when the strings are loose.
      The bass is just as loud as an it would be without the folding modification.

  8. I was just in Nashville and Charlie’s tech, Jay Studdard, worked on my CFB and case. Frontier Airlines had managed to totally mangle a wheel on the case. Jay found a replacement wheel and hardware and replaced it all. He also upgraded my bass and “tightened it up”. He said it was the oldest one he’s seen and also one of the best sounding. Kudos to Jay, give that man a raise, Charlie!
    He got it all done in a day and delivered it to me at my hotel in time for a gig the next day. WOW!
    What a great outfit you have going, Charlie! And thanks for the use of your amp, it worked out great!

  9. Anyone had to pay the airlines a fee for oversized baggage yet? I nearly did with Jet Blue. The counter person even brought out the tape measure, called 2 “colleagues” over for a show of consultation. I had my credit card out ready to pay, but he relented for no discernible reason I could figure. I didn’t pursue an explanation.

  10. I’ll be giving the airline industry another shot at measuring and charging exhobitant fees for oversize baggage tomorrow when I fly from Boston to Augusta, GA by way of Charlotte on US AIrways to play the Blind Willie McTell Blues Festival. Any suggestions? Anybody with considerably more flying experience than me traveling by air with a CFB—if you’re out there, please weigh in.

  11. Well, as it turned out, no charges for oversized in either direction, a fee of $175 each way saved. Only charged for the piece of luggage–not free on US Airways, each way. (However, I’m stuck in Buffalo—Augusta, Ga to Charlotte to Buffalo!! En route to Boston)
    And my bass is already on the ground in Boston, according to baggage tracking!
    By the way, TWO acts back to back at the Blind Willie McTell blues festival featured the incredible CFB, and did they ever sound great!!

  12. Thank you, Charlie! You made it happen. When I saw this crazy-bad-ass invention in 2005 at the California World Music Festival, I knew it had to be made for the rest of us. Thank you for sharing your wonderful invention with us!

  13. Had seen one of your basses at the brewpub/performance center here in my hometown of millheim PA. Had very strong urges to buy one of your basses. In June played the Azkena Rock Festival in Vittoria Spain. During the second song of our set the fingerboard fell off the bass the Azkena folks had rented for me. Had to finish the show with a p-bass borrowed from the Scorpions. Gonna get me one these ASAP. Gonna be in Nashville for the AMA’s how can I find you?

  14. Anyone ever get their strings tangled up? I was unfolding my bass up at home when I noticed the strings had tangled. I didn’t pay much attention to exactly how the tailpiece needed to be turned back through the strings, so I inadvertently tangled the strings beyond recovery. At this point the only way to get them untangled would have been to re-string the bass by removing the strings at the tuner end, since the ball ends on the original strings, (Spirocores) wouldn’t fit through the tailpiece holes, preventing me from untangling it from that end. Had this happened at a gig, I’d have run out of time. I used the opportunity to replace the strings, and I noticed that my replacement Helicores had balls that would just squeeze through the tailpiece holes. Bottom line, either make sure your ball ends fit through the tailpiece holes, or be extra careful to never tangle the strings while at a gig.

  15. Thinking towards CFB, but I live in Russia. FAQ section says free shipping is available for Soviet Union – does it mean Russia? And also, are there any updates on hybrid in terms of durability and sound quality improvement over time?

    Thanks

    • Hi George, Yes, that’s free shipping to Russia. There will be some duties and taxes that you’ll have to pay, but otherwise, the total cost is $3599. If you want me to estimate the taxes, just send me your city and postal code, and I’ll work it up for you. I so happy to hear from you, because I don’t have a folding bass owner in Russia!
      There have been many hyrids produced now, and they’re doing well. The biggest change is the newly design case, which is stiffer, and has more space around the top and back. You can be confident that the hybrid is as well protected as the laminate.
      Both hybrid and laminate ‘open up’ over time, as all basses will.

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