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1964 Jazz Bass restoration

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by johnk_10, Jan 30, 2014.


  1. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    this bass was sent to me for and evaluation and a refin so I thought that i'd share this one with you guys.

    it's an all original 1964 Jazz bass with the exception of the 'hippy refin' strip and stain walnut finish. the owner wanted it back to its stock 3TSB, so first, here's the before pics:

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  2. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    the first thing to do was to strip this funky finish:

    [​IMG]

    when removing these old tort guards, I always immediately screw them down to a piece of plywood so they don't shrink and become nearly impossible to refit during reassembly. it also helps you keep track of the original pickguard screws ;).

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    next, I stripped it and lightly sanded block sanded it to get it ready for bleaching out the stain.

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  3. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    after bleaching the remaining stain and filling all of the dings with wood filler, I then shot it with fullerplast in a semi transparent yellow. (by '64 this is the same process that they were originally done).

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  4. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    then the nitro burst and clear coats were applied:

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    once it cures (in the fender allotted time of 10-14 days) and I buff it out, i'll post pics of its final assembly.
     
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  6. thisSNsucks

    thisSNsucks Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Yonkers, NY
    Looking awesome as always John!
     
  7. greybeard125

    greybeard125 Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2013
    Location:
    North Augusta SC
    Love watching a master at work!!!
     
  8. pfox14

    pfox14

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2013
    Don't you just want to kill people who destroy a finish like that walnut stain nightmare?
     
  9. jim nolte

    jim nolte

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Location:
    california
    +1. Looks awesome!! I have the same era Jazz. The last time I tried cleaning it with a standard guitar polish which says is safe to use on nitro finishes, to my horror the finish started to come off on the polish cloth! Now the top part of the body is more yellow than the rest. Could it be back in my youth that I used to use Johnson Floor wax on it.:rolln o: Or is that the way the finish ages and modern polishes can't be used? Jim
     
  10. DwaynieAD

    DwaynieAD Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2010
    Location:
    Mechanicsburg, PA

    could you refin my jazz to look like that?
     
  11. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    well, there are those that like the hippy refins, but i'm just not one of them.
     
  12. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
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    Thousand Oaks, CA
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    John K Custom Basses
    the old nitro finishes are pretty fragile. almost any polish will start to remove them once they're thin and oxidized.
    if you want polish them, you have to condition them, but even that will end up removing some of it.
     
  13. jim nolte

    jim nolte

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2006
    Location:
    california
    Thanks John, if I ever have it re-finished you are the one I would take it to. Your 3-tone Sunburst looks as good to my eyes as Alleva/Coppola or FBass. Really good work! Jim
     
  14. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2010
    Location:
    The Great Midwest
    Wow John that is going to be beautiful
     
  15. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2008
    Location:
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    Disclosures:
    John K Custom Basses
    thanks Jim, but I just try to make my fender vintage restorations look like the way that they left the factory and IMO, they looked really good. I don't want them to look 'custom', just stock. ;)
     
  16. Tbone76

    Tbone76

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2013
    Location:
    Upstate, NY
    Amazing work, as always. Sub'd
     
  17. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2004
    Location:
    SLC, Utah -USA-
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    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    Excellent work, John!

    Was the neck pocket cut too wide when it was made? I may just be seeing a shadow in the picture.

    If the pocket was cut too wide, please include pictures on how you made the neck fit tightly into the pocket.

    If all's well, and it doesn't require fixing, please excuse my OCD about neck pockets! :D. ;)
     
  18. kesslari

    kesslari Supporting Member

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    Dec 21, 2007
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    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
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    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    Very, very nice work, John.
     
  19. ShoeManiac

    ShoeManiac Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2006
    Location:
    New Jersey
    It's very cool to get some insight into the refinish process. And I for one had no idea that a pickguard could shrink. Thanks for sharing this, John! That new sunburst finish looks gorgeous, btw.
     
  20. CDweller

    CDweller Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Location:
    Clearwater, FL
    I am knocked out by how stock looking your finish looks. The color tone and widths of the colors are dead nuts on to my Jan'65 Jazz. Your finish looks just a tad fresher, like it would coming out of the factory before being sweated on and cigarette smoke worked it's magic from night after night of gigging.

    The owner is a lucky dude- his pick guard is intact, and '64's are perhaps the best year of the veneer fretboard pre-CBS Jazzes.

    John- I'm on the hunt for two vintage Jazz bass pick guards.
     
  21. tdizzle

    tdizzle Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    Location:
    Detroit, MI
    Funny, how the original burst was left beneath the bridge. Looks great.
     

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