Being fed up with the rattling and moving endpin on my honey Stagg I decided to fix it once and for all. The movement is due to three things: the long extending length of the pin, the cheap plastic the endpin plug is made of and the fit of the plug in the bass body. After some thinking on it I decided I had two options:
- change the whole assembly for a normal DB endpin en plug
- make a new, good fitting plug from a better material
As I had already put some effort in making a new rubber tip for the stock pin and did not want to spend a lot more money on the bass at this moment (the money paid for the new amp was still fresh in my memory…) I decided to have a go at option 2. I knew I had a piece of 35 mm diameter aluminum rod in the workshop somewhere and that would make a good starting point for a new plug.
The pictures below describe the process of making a new plug step by step. The new plug has been chemically blackened afterwards using Birchwood Casey Aluminium Black and the fixing screw has been threaded directly into the aluminum.
The plug has a tight fit in the bass body and is fixed by two countersunk screws that screw into the aluminium of the plug. I made the part of the plug that goes onside the bass body about 20 mm longer to give more support. The pin itself did not fit in the 10 mm hole I drilled… The “10 mm” pin actually turned out to be somewhat larger in diameter… So I had to ream this out a bit. But now it is a nice and tight sliding fit.
Below you find the pictures from raw material to the mounted plug. So far I can feel no play anymore and the rattle is gone too. Time will tell if this will stay that way.
The old plastic plug and fixing screws
The end of the pin in the shielded electronics cavity
The old endpin assembly with modified rubber tip
The plastic plug
The non-conical plastic plug
The 35 mm diameter aluminium raw material
The first run on the lathe
The new finished plug
The finished new plug, 20 mm longer for more support
Fixed with two countersunk M4 screws. Looking sharp!
The endpin on a Stagg EUB is one of its greatest design flaws. It moves around a lot, always rattles inside the bass and it is too short for people taller than about 6 feet. Besides that I find the rubber tip to be pretty slippery on a wooden floor (at least the tip on my new Stagg was).
Due to the design of the Stagg the endpin has to be very long. With it being only 10 mm in diameter it becomes pretty wobbly. Being so long it has a lot of leverage and the pin moves around in all directions while playing. The end of the pin rattles inside the bass due to this movement.
The major issue here is the endpin plug being made of plastic! The fit of this piece in the bass is not very good. It is cylindrical instead of conical as on a normal DB and it is held in place by two small screws hidden under the string holder. The fit of the pin in the plastic plug is not very good either… Rather sloppy…
The rattle inside the bass can be cured (to a certain extend) by wrapping some duct tape around the end of the pin that is inside the bass. I also tried a piece of heat shrink tube but that came loose eventually.
I replaced the rubber tip by turning an aluminum adapter to be able to fit a 12 mm rubber tip I had lying around from another bass. These rubbers come in different sizes and are used on walking sticks. I have used them on three of my basses and I find them to be non slipping, durable and cheap.
As the smallest available size is 12 mm I had to make the adapter. So I turned the adapter , heated it and then shrunk fitted it to the end pin. This solved the problem of a slipping pin once and for all, even when playing sitting with the bass at a larger angle.
I still have to find a more definitive solution to the rattle and excessive movement of the endpin. I will probably turn a new plug from hardwood or aluminium to replace the plastic one. But as this involves removing strings, bridge and stringholder and quite a bit of work, I keep on postponing this…