Dingwall Bass Guitars:: Afterburner ABII, Charcoal pink burst, Walnut Body (Chambered), Burl maple top, Novax fan fret system :: For sale, UK, EU Custom hand made basses, exclusively at Bassdirect


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Dingwall Super ABII 5/3 Charcoal-Pinkburst


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  1. Export price £4708 - Please contact us for international shipping rates

  1. The ABII is our favourite Dingwall. The Walnut body has a clear mid range focus with well balanced high and low end, this bass features a stunning burl maple top with a high gloss charcoal/pink burst finish for a unique look. Armed with a set of three custom wound Dingwall FDV pickups, optional blackout neck neck and Darkglass preamp this bass has a superb selection of the usual Dingwall balance of tone and clarity of note wherever you play across the neck with some great attitude!

  1. Actual instrument shown, please click on images to enlarge.

  1. ABII Five String

  2. Maple Burl X top - £600 option

  3. Charcoal-Pink burst - £350 option

  4. Walnut chambered body

  5. Maple neck with blackout neck head and heal - £200 option

  6. Blue luminlay side dots - £60 option

  7. 3 x FDV pickup - £230 option

  8. 3 x series/parallel switch - £120 option

  9. Darkglass 3 band eq with volume and pickup selector; - £400 option

  1. Black Custom Bridge, Black Hipshot ultralight tuners, extra rear strap button

  2. Weight - 8lb 8oz/3.8kg

  3. New DIngwall Pro Gig bag with accessory case and tools

  4. Buy Dingwall five string sets HERE

The build quality of this bass is very impressive and the finish is faultless. With a combination of the custom Dingwall pickups and the Glockenklang preamp you have lots of control over the unbelievable variety of tones that this bass is capable of. The fan fret neck is a joy to play and totally intuitive and the scale length is 37" on the B string and 34" on the G string but feels comfortable and relatively compact. The strings ring with piano like clarity and command with unprecedented clarity on the low notes and almost perfect balance across the strings. Favoured by artists like David Swift and Lee Sklar, Dingwall bass guitars really are that good.


Rotary switch
All Dingwall basses (except Combustion) feature a 4-position rotary pickup selector. The pickup combinations are bridge pickup soloed, both in parallel, both in series, neck pickup soloed.


In the past we’ve used Bartolini, Aguilar and now Glockenklang pre-amps.  These are all top-notch, high-quality pre-amps. What we like about the Glockenklang pre-amps is the smooth and subtle tone shaping and the Active/Passive treble control. We’ve spent a lot of time perfecting the natural tone of our basses so that they don’t need a lot of tone adjustment. The Glockenklang really fits well with this philosophy. The Active treble boosts and cuts as expected in active mode but when the pre-amp is switched to passive mode, the control is switched to a passive cut control. This is essentially like having two basses with two distinct characters. One active and one passive.


We take neck construction very seriously due to our extensive experience in guitar repairs coupled with our geographic location and corresponding extreme climate.  In my years in the guitar repair business I constantly had to deal with humidity related problems made worse by the huge temperature and humidity swings of our local climate. Many of these problems could have been minimised through simple design changes and materials choices.

Touring musicians are constantly amazed at how stable Dingwall instruments are.  Many state that their Dingwall necks are as stable as their graphite necked instruments.

This bass features the new Wenge neck, constructed from strong and stable seasoned wenge for high stability and durability.


We use 18% hard nickel silver fretwire.  Lee Sklar turned us onto the benefits of small frets. The advantages are a more woody, less metallic tone, smoother glissandos and a faster feel.  Our standard size is “banjo” size.  This is the same size as you’d find on most guitars from the 50’s and 60’s. Although its size is smaller than standard bass fretwire, its service life is about the same.


Wenge (Wen-gay) on Afterburner II
This is an interesting fretboard wood due to the alternating layers of hard and soft wood (early and late wood).  The hard grain gives the tone a nice top end similar to ebony and the soft grain adds the warmth of Rosewood.  It’s a great all around fingerboard wood.

Submitted on the 19th November 2011 by Martin who purchased an Dingwall ABII 5 string and Genz Benz Neox 212T and Genz Benz Shuttle 12 Max amplifier

Hi Mark,

Totally stunned by the clarity of the AB2 through the Genz Benz  rig at rehearsal last night.

Thanks for your help and advice.




Afterburner II 6-String Bass

Fanned frets, six strings, chambered body, 37” scale on the B string...

Doesn’t sound like a run-of-the-mill bass. Mike Brooks checks out

this custom instrument to see what it’s capable of.

Dingwall basses were a rare breed on these shores but some prominent marketing and wider availability have meant that us Brits have finally had the opportunity to sample the delights of Sheldon Dingwall’s bass creations.

The Dingwall brand has been associated with the Novax fanned-fret design for some time, yet on paper this particular model should be a beast of an instrument with a 37” scale length and a wide six-string fingerboard to contend with. So is this merely a feature-laden example that looks better than it plays, or is the sum greater than the individual parts?

Build Quality

The ABII is an impressive instrument to behold, but any weight expectations are dispelled immediately, in part by the chambered walnut body, while the grain of the bubinga top is clearly visible through the gloss coated, translucent-red body finish. Not only do the f-holes improve the acoustic resonance, they also add a touch of class to the bass’s appearance. The smooth curves and sensible body styling are very much in tune with the feeling of quality that this bass offers; extending the rear-body contouring all the way across the top of the body to the end of the top horn means that the bass sits snugly against the player’s body.

The neck profile is extremely slim, almost a prerequisite considering the width of the fingerboard, and traversing the neck is made even easier by the smooth, silk-like satin finish. Six-string basses can be a little daunting, but Dingwall have tried to make this bass highly playable, even down to the positioning of the front-facing position marker at the bottom of the fingerboard facing and using larger than normal markers on the top edge. The fourbolt neck attachment is tight, using countersunk hex bolts, and the neck joint is sculpted, resulting in less bulk to the joint. Dual carbon-fibre spars have been inserted into the neck to maintain neck rigidity, and the overall level of finishing is top drawer throughout.

The hardware and electronics reinforce the air of quality, and rather than settle for ‘off the- shelf’ solutions, Dingwall have developed their own component designs in tandem with recognised component manufacturers to solve problems. Black hardware is the order of the day and modified Hipshot Ultralite machine heads (lighter than the originals!) have been used, making a string tree redundant, due to them being counter-bored into the flat headstock facing. Hipshot also developed the bridge, and although string-spacing adjustments are not an option (set at 18mm), the bridge has been designed to offer maximum sustain and stability. The FD-3 4L soapbar pickups are in-house-designed units featuring neodymium magnets and offering a blend of single and split-coil characteristics with a greater frequency response, and these have been coupled with a Glockenklang two-band EQ circuit. The control layout is relatively simple, comprising volume, pickup selector (bridge pickup, both pickups in parallel, both pickups in series, neck pickup), and bass and treble controls offering cut and boost. The volume control has a push/ pull function that switches the bass into passive mode, with the treble control acting as a passive cut control. A Neutrik locking jack socket is recessed into the lower-body bout, and a quick peek into the control cavity showed that it was well shielded with all circuit cabling tied back. We also liked the magnetic battery cavity cover.

Playability and Sounds

Although we expected to be checking our fret positioning due to the fanned frets, the opposite occurred. The bass felt easier to play, almost natural, as though we were well accustomed to it, and over an extended period it felt that there was less stress on the fretting hand and wrist. However, some care was taken over finger placement from the

12th fret onwards due to the myriad of notes at our disposal. There is a headstock bias due to the amount of timber used in the neck; however, placed on a strap, the bass balances at a perfectly comfortable angle with good weight distribution. The 18mm string spacing and slim neck profile make this an enjoyable ‘sixer’ to play, while the upper regions of the neck are readily accessible due to the extensive cutaways. The ABII is a lively, resonant bass with a definite spring in its tonal step. Spending some time with it shows that it readily responds to the player’s technique, whether digging in or applying a softer fingerstyle touch. The weight of attack also affects the overall tone, but the circuit and tone-shaping options mean that the player can move from a gritty, aggressive tone to a smoother, delicate tone with a minor adjustment of the controls. We were surprised by the lack of mid EQ on a bass of this calibre, but it’s clear that this bass has no need for it as its natural tone displays a mid bias giving it a clear presence. The individual pickups carry the usual traits expected of their positioning, but it was the parallel/series options that created most interest. The parallel setting is by far the most

conventional ‘all-round’ tone on offer, with a warm, round character; yet on switching to the series setting, the signal is far more powerful with more honk and grit to the tone, making fingerstyle passages more distinct and defined, and this setting also opens up the tones from the low B string. Switching to passive mode, the signal is still louder than most passive basses, which is very impressive, with no degradation in the bass’s unique voice or ‘bark’.


There is no doubting the pedigree and overall quality of this instrument; what is surprising is that it took this long for Dingwall instruments to become popular over here. The craftsmanship and obvious forethought that have gone into the design and construction of this bass are there for all to see, and despite the sizeable price tag it is clear where your money is going. The sonic performance is quite outstanding and we have no hesitation in saying that the high-quality parts and features have created a fantastic all-round package. Very impressive!

Mike Brooks


Dingwall Afterburner II 6-String Bass

Price: £2,845

Colour: Translucent red

Body: Walnut body with bubinga top

Neck: Bubinga

Fingerboard: Wenge

Pickups: 2 x FD-3/Mach II 4L pickups

Electronics: Glockenklang 2-band, (bass/treble) active preamp

Controls: Volume, pickup selector (bridge, parallel, series, neck), bass, treble

Tuners: Custom Hipshot/Dingwall Ultralite design

Bridge: Custom Hipshot/Dingwall design

Made in: Canada

Nut width: 53mm

Neck join: Bolt-on, 4-screw attachment

Scale length: 37” (940mm) for the B

string, 34” (864mm) for the E string

Frets: 24

Weight: 3.9kg (8lb 9oz)

Case/gig bag included: Yes, gig bag

Left-hand model available: Yes, as a custom order

Plus: Quality workmanship and top-notch design have resulted in a 6-string that looks fantastic, plays amazingly well and totally sounds the part.

Minus: Hefty price tag, and there is no getting away from the large neck dimensions, although this is one of the most playable 6-stringers out there.

Overall: A very impressive instrument; its eventual owner will be one very happy bassist!

Issue 64 Bass Guitar Magazine June 2012


Tel: 01926 886433

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