Atelier Bram De Man is the Brussels-based workshop of Master Luthier Bram De Man, specializing in Double Basses.
Amongst the activities are the making of new double basses, restoration, sound adjustment and set-up. Bassmaker
New Double Basses
Making bespoke double basses is an extensive process. Made with care for tradition and history, the basses built in our atelier are each unique pieces. From historical copies to modern interpretations, in antiqued or crisp look, there is a line to be made for each particular model and musician. Since every instrument is firstly designed to sound, every personal change can be discussed beforehand. Furthermore, we offer the possibility to make a bench copy of an existing instrument from your own collection, or any 6-string, 5-string, 4-string, 3-string bass, for classical or jazz use.
Just make an appointment to discuss the options, our coffee is warm and waiting.
Double basses are fragile and subject to a high and constant tension. They are susceptible to cracking or deformation and due to their large size are often unprotected against impact. However, there is rarely a state from which a double bass cannot be restored. The restoration of old instruments is a daily continuum in our workshop; from arching corrections to neckgrafts, from crack repair to varnish retouch. In order to correctly assess the damage and the ideal restoration procedure per instrument, you are invited to make an appointment.
Sound Adjustment and Set-up
The operation of each musical instrument is affected by changes in relative humidity, temperature and pressure. These parameters, in combination with the normal fluctuations of a double bass, can have a negative impact on both sound and playability. Adjustments to the bridge, bassbar and soundpost, as well as strings, tailpiece, endpin etc., provide many options for optimizing the sound for each specific double bass in order to use the instrument at its maximum potential.
We have a wide range of carefully selected products for use in these processes, per application depending on the instrument.
Bram De Man was born in Belgium, where he received his first training as a double bass player. At the age of 18 he was admitted to the Ghent Conservatory to study musical instrument making, graduating with a first class distinction and receiving an honorary bequest for his research into D-violones and the early double bass. After these studies, he traveled throughout Europe to expand his knowledge and experience; from observing the Hungarian Tamburaški bass to studying historical instruments in Brescia, Cremona, Paris, Oslo, London, etc., working and learning in ateliers in Vienna, Berlin and Brussels.
After these years, he decided to move back to Belgium to open his shop in Brussels, keeping a close connection to Vienna as a second home and working place.
As a contemporary maker and restorer, each historical instrument is seen as a unique document in time. It offers a chance to study the old masters, retrace their techniques, see the materials they used and observe the way the instruments have aged. These are all aspects that are assembled in our workshop, when creating our double basses. From the first line on paper until the last tuning of a string, every step is rooted in tradition.
The work is executed with carefully selected materials, specific to a certain style or sound, respecting the hundreds of years it took the trees to grow only to be cut down at the right moment; with the intention to be made into a double bass. The rareness of said materials imposes a necessity to keep making the best work for the most demanding musicians.
Address: Place de Dinant 5
Accessibility: Train - We are located on a 5-minute walking distance from Brussels Central station.
: Car - Parking spots are available in the surrounding streets, with the possibility to unload in front of the workshop.
Multiple underground parking spaces within a radius of 300m,
in addition to parking facilities at the Sablon and Albertine
: Bus - Bus stop Cesar de Paepe // 48, central in the Brussels public
Open by appointment only. You are invited to make a reservation:
by telephone: +32 / 474 11 67 37
by mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
or by filling in the contactform: