rocktober 500 countdown

Bass In Waiting



Doesn't look like much, does it? Just a few hunks of wood, really. It's going to be a bass in a while.

And, to be more precise about that wood, what we actually have is a hunk of nicely figured ash, a hunk of rock-hard maple and a hunk of darkest, darkest, ebony.

That ash (the biggest bit of wood in the image) will form the body of the Radio Nova Rocktober bass. It's going to be finished in a 'black-burst' effect, with a clear centre, gradually darkening to a black-toned edge. I think that'll look pretty damn cool with this grain peeking out underneath.

The maple will form the neck and the ebony will be slotted for a 30" scale to form the fingerboard (and to carry the black theme up to the headstock).

It's gonna be handsome and no mistake but these lumps of wood are going to impart a great tone too.

Looking forward to getting going on this. Check back soon for more.

The Radio Nova Rocktober Guitar

A little late with this but things have been hectic in the Haze shop lately. However, its time to discuss the guitar I'll be making for the winner of Radio Nova's Rocktober competition (see posts below if you want to catch up). As you'll know if you tuned in for the final, nail-biting, minutes, the number one song in Nova's 500 Countdown was Stairway To Heaven. Greg Dunne was one of those that guessed this and his name was picked from the hat. I met with Greg and a guitar-playing friend, Erin, recently and we got geeky with some instrument-talk.

So what's it gonna be?

Well, the instrument I'll be making and presenting will be a Haze Bassmaster 6.


I'm actually really pleased with this as I love these things. The Bassmaster is a six-string, short-scale bass. It's a 30" scale-length bass but it's got a really guitar-like feel to it. It feels very much like a middle-ground between bass and guitar and it's got some great versatility to its playability and its tone.

A little about the specs we've agreed:

The finish will be a toned, black-burst effect so I'm sourcing some nicely figured ash for the body and that grain will look great through the burst. The neck will be maple and the fingerboard, ebony to keep the black theme going. A white/black/white pickguard will be broken by all of those shiny, chromed, control panels and the instrument will be fitted with a vibrato tailpiece and roller bridge.

I think it's going to look great. A little bit like this but with a few changes. What do you reckon?

Haze Bassmaster Radio Nova

Haze Bassmaster Radio Nova

Winning A Custom Guitar: Frequently Asked Questions

Haze Custom Guitars Dublin FAQ

Haze Custom Guitars Dublin FAQ

A proper FAQ about having a guitar or bass custom-made is probably overdue around here. I'll add it to my To Do List and, in the meantime, I'll offer this hastily cobbled together blog post in response to some of the questions I'm getting about the Super Amazing Win A Custom Haze Guitar With Radio Nova's Rocktober 500 Countown (from here on in referred to as Rocktober as that's a lot to type). Naturally enough, I've gotten some queries from people who want to know how it will all work for the ultimate winner and from those who have questions about doing the custom guitar thing in the normal, non-competition route.

Hopefully this will help a little. If you think of something I haven't covered, feel free to shout in the comments and I'll do my best to answer.

Q: What can I win?
A: You can win yourself a completely custom guitar or bass. By that, I mean that you can sit down with me and we can design and specify as much or as little of your guitar as you like. Then I'll build it.

Q: How can I win?
A: Tune in to Radio Nova on 100FM or listen online. Call when they tell you and make a guess at what the number one song in the Rocktober 500 Countdown will be. All correct answers go in a draw to win.

Q: Do you know what the number one song is?
A: Nope. And if I did, I wouldn't tell you. Well, maybe for cash. Or biscuits. It's all moot though. I don't have a clue.

Q: I can play a few chords but I don't have an in-depth knowledge of how capacitor value and no-load potentiometers can be used in a tone control. How can I design a guitar?
A: Don't fret (guitar humour). We can talk capacitors if you like but you can just as easily chat about what guitars you think look cool or sound cool and I'll handle the science bit.

Q: Can you build me an exact copy of <insert famous guitar here>?
A: Not really. Legal issues aside, that sort of misses the point of a 'custom' guitar anyway. This is your chance to get something unique. Now, that said, there's no problem looking at existing guitars to garner some inspiration. Exact copies are out, though.

Q: Did you really make a guitar for Joe Bonamassa?
A: Are you calling me a liar? Sure did. Check it out. You can have one too if you like.

Q: I want a guitar made of jelly, with a Waterford Crystal neck and pickups that can curve space-time in such a way that I can see the Big Bang. Can you do that?
A: What flavour jelly? The honest answer is that I may need to advise on practical considerations as we progress through the design and specification process. I'll do my best to accommodate your craziness but it may not always be possible.

Q: Ha! I've caught you, Hayes! You mean to tell me there are terms and conditions to this?
A: Of course there are terms and conditions. You can check them out on the Rocktober competition page and they'll be here after that's moved on in case you need a reminder.

Q: How long will it take?
A: It depends on the specification you want and the availability of any parts that are needed for your guitar. Custom orders are generally turned around in a few months but I'm estimating around 20 weeks for this to be safe. It most likely will be shorter but could be a little longer if you want something mental.

Q: I live on a small island off the coast of Laois and I need to charter a Lear Jet to meet you for the design process. Will you reimburse me?
A: Nope. You'll have to make your own way, I'm afraid. I might make you a cup of tea though and, let's face it, you'll get a snazzy guitar out of it so it's not all bad.

Q: I reckon that the solid gold guitar and platinum strings I want falls well within budget. Is this ok?
A: Nope. I get to assess the actual realism of costings and final value. I'm not daft.

Q: I never win anything. Can I have a guitar anyway?
A: 'Course you can. And for a surprisingly reasonable wad of cash.

Details: Win A Custom Guitar—HAZE & NOVA

Haze Guitars Radio Nova Custom Instrument CompetitionRadio Nova's ROCKTOBER has begun. That means your chance to win a completely custom guitar or bass has begun. More details are on Nova's site but basically, here's the deal:

Radio Nova are doing their Rocktober 500 Countdown of the best guitar songs ever. You tune in, listen to some great songs and, when you hear their cue to call, phone them on 01 440 4100 and tell them what you think will be number 1. If you're right, you'll be in a draw to win.

Easy, eh?

So, what are you still doing here? Warm up the valves in your wireless and twiddle it to 100FM or listen online.

Win A Custom Guitar - Radio Nova & Haze Guitars

Haze Guitars Radio Nova Custom Instrument CompetitionSo, I told you it was gonna be good.

I'm assuming that a lot of the (Irish) people that read this probably listen to Radio Nova for their fix of great, guitary music. Well, now you've got another reason to tune in.

The teasers have started to air and I can now announce that I've been working with Nova to help spread guitary-goodness.

Next week (first week in October) Nova will be running a fantastic competition for their Rocktober 500 Countdown. It'll have a rather special prize:

A custom Haze guitar or bass.

Yep, the lucky winner will get to design their perfect instrument with me and I'll build it for him or her.

This will be a completely custom instrument. I'll meet with the winner to discuss and decide on specifications and then I'll hack at bits of wood and metal and strings and stuff to make their dream guitar or bass.

Pretty cool, eh?

More details to follow. For now though, if I were you, I'd turn on the radio.