5-String Juzek, 7/8, c. 1920 - Los Angeles - $8500
(Please note: price listed above has been reduced to $8000 - including shipping to continental US.)
If you are serious about buying a bass and you live in or near Los Angeles, you should check out this instrument. Other basses will be cosmetically more impressive, but when it comes to sound, most will pale by comparison.
There have been numerous small repairs of minor cracks, all holding tight for the last four years.
This bass was originally a four-string bass.
The neck was reinforced when the wide ebony fingerboard was installed.
"John Juzek, Czechoslavakia" (signed label inside)
5th string was added after the bass was made
- length - 115 cm (45.3")
- upper bout - 53 cm (20.9")
- center bout - 37 cm (14.6")
- lower bout - 70.5 cm (27.8")
- vibrating string length - 43.5"
Reading from its October 2012 appraisal:
The top is two-piece spruce with straight, even, medium-to-wide grain. A large repair wing piece was added to the lower treble bout. The back is a 2-piece plain quarter-cut maple. The scroll is beech, V grafted to a maple neck, and a reverse wedge has been added to the neck face. The instrument is in fair condition.
Appraisal value for insurance purposes: $12,500.
Having played and owned some good basses over the past 30 years, I can honestly say none has sounded as impressive as this one.
It embodies the marriage of beauty (of tone) and beast (in volume).
The tone is remarkable across all registers - with lyrical highs, muscular mids and that authoritative, church organ-like low end.
The fifth string is currently tuned to B.
Classical players will welcome not having to reach up and futz with a cumbersome extension. Jazz players will delight in ending a ballad by bowing a final low Eb or C, melting the singer's cold glare into a warm smile.
Included are some practical accessories:
-generously padded bag (cover) with strategically-placed handles
-two decent German student bows and a quiver
-a nifty blender to combine and edit your amplified sound with your mic or Realist pickup, e.g.
Anyone who loves bass and works hard at it should be rewarded with a bass that sounds as magnificent as this one.
What's the string length? Thanks
Juzek the giant
Louis, et al:
The string length is 43.5".
The neck is a D neck.
I'm 5'9", and with the endpin on its lowest setting, all the notes are readily accessible.
I love the idea of your bass, and I've been looking for a 5-stringer, but 43.5 is too manly for me! Good luck
My first bass, a Pfretzschner that served me for 30 years, and my Red Callender bass, a Morelli, both sport a 43" string length. Not knowing any better, I never thought much about string length; I can only imagine what difference a smaller distance might have made as I enter the twilight of a mediocre career.
(You're a literary guy: Do you suppose a bass player in a similar spot inspired Cornelius Ryan to write "A Bridge Too Far"?)
Maybe another remake of the Burt Reynolds' classic, "The Longest Yard"? Good luck with it. By the way, I saw the broadcast of the great jazz concert at the Ford - impressive playing, maestro!
Many thanks, amigo.
New price: $8,000, including shipping to ConUS
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