The Tym Jazzmaster guitar, bass thingy .......
I've been wanting to make "this" guitar for years. In fact ever since I saw Local H live twice in the 90's and was blown away with the sound their lead singer/guitarist/bass player Scott Lucas made. His idea was, them being a 2 piece (before 2 pieces were cool) was to play guitar AND bass together, on one guitar. It wasn't until I started my new band, Midget Pillion recently that after some teething "problems" ended up being a 3 piece with 2 guitars and drums that the opportunity arose to do it.
The idea is simple..... kind of. You put a pick up under the "E" string and send that to a separate output jack. This goes through an octave pedal, through your bass pedals and into a bass amp. The rest of the guitar is standard and goes through your guitar pedals and into a guitar amp. This allows you to play the root note on the E string, which sounds like a bass as well as playing the rest of the guitar as normal. Simple.
I've had this old Jazzmaster body lying around the workshop for years just waiting for the opportunity to live again. It had been refinished and stripped several times. It was in good condition considering and is a great piece of alder.
I fitted a Mustang bass pick up under the E string in the neck pick up cavity. This goes to a volume pot and out the first output jack. This gets sent through an EH Micro POG and then through my Big Bottom and onto a Tym Toecutter and Big Mud, then to the bass amp.
The Tele deluxe humbucker is wired to the 3 way toggle in conjunction with the P bass pick up in the neck pick up cavity. This pick up just picks up the D,G,B and E strings and gives a "trebbly" thin sound that's ideal for "shoegazing" style drones. The Tele HB is LOUD and works well with the Jazzmaster platform (ask Lee Ranaldo) These pick ups go to the other volume pot and then out the second output jack. These get sent through a standard guitar pedal set up and into a guitar amp.
I've also anchored the E string from the vibrato (or tremolo as Leo would call it) so I can use the vibrato on guitar but keep the bass note intact giving the effect of 2 separate instruments.
The neck is an old neck that has been mistreated but is thin and straight, two things I LIKE in a neck. It has re-issue F tuners and a great piece of rosewood.
This does mean I have to take 2 amps with me, but I was running stereo amps on guitar anyway so 2 Tym 2x12's (one bass, one guitar) isn't too much work. I've been using a '72 Orange 120 as a bass amp and my Tym Supertone 40 as the guitar amp and it works a treat.