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How to ID a US-made Musicman SUB?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DrVenkman, Apr 9, 2014.


  1. DrVenkman

    DrVenkman

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    What's the best/easiest way to tell if a Musicman SUB is one of the US-made ones?
     
  2. Bobster

    Bobster

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2006
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    It's labeling on the headstock. The US ones are Music Man SUB or (S.U.B.). The Indonesian ones are Sterling by MusicMan SUB.

    Also the US ones were manufactured in San Luis Obispo, the Sterling ones, Indonesia.

    Bob
     
  3. DrVenkman

    DrVenkman

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    So if it says Musicman SUB (or S.U.B.) it's US made (understand if it says Sterling it's Indonesian)? For some reason I thought the later Musicman SUB's were manufactured off shore.
     
  4. DrVenkman

    DrVenkman

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    Location:
    Pacific NW
    Sorry, I've been trying to do some searching on the web without much luck. So if the headstock says 'Musicman SUB Sterling Bass' is that US made or Indonesian?

    [​IMG]
     
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  6. GBassNorth

    GBassNorth

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Location:
    SoCal
    I don't think the US ones have the word Sterling on them. So the one in the pic appears to be an Indonesian one.
     
  7. NicJimBass

    NicJimBass The Kirk Hammett of bass guitar! Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2004
    Location:
    Lancaster, OH
    That is US made.

    I think the easy way to differentiate is to look at more than just the logo. On the US models, the neck was painted black, the body has a textured (non-smooth) finish, the pickguard has a diamond-plate pattern, and the bridge is the same size and shape as the US Music Man's.

    Here is a pic of the US made version.



    SUB by Sterling have natural necks, smooth, sometimes satin finishes, solid pickguards and larger bridges, similar to the old school MM bridges that had the mutes, but these have no mutes.

    Here is a pic of the most recent import version.
     
  8. NicJimBass

    NicJimBass The Kirk Hammett of bass guitar! Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2004
    Location:
    Lancaster, OH
    No, this is US made. It was the SUB version of the Sterling bass, meaning the neck is more Jazz-like, no plate under the knobs, similar to the US Sterling. I think these came out towards the end of the line, so there are fewer of these than the SUB 4 and 5, which were based off the StingRay.

    Here is a TB listing for a US SUB Sterling.
     
  9. GBassNorth

    GBassNorth

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2006
    Location:
    SoCal
    I stand corrected, forgot about those later SUB Sterlings. I've only ever seen one other one. The Stingray based SUB 4 and 5 active basses were fantastic buys at their price point when new and they've held their value very good since then. I wish I still had mine.
     
  10. bassmachine2112

    bassmachine2112

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    That is a USA one,it will have a sticker on the back of the headstock with san luis osbispo on the back.
    I,ve had mine since 2003 and they are fabulous gigging basses.
    I,d go as far to say they are a classic in their own right having played the "real" ones as well.
    Musicman didn,t stop making them cause they were crap,simple economics were their achilles heel.Maybe if they had put a simple black scratchplate on them they would have flown off the shelf,who knows but most people who have played one have a soft spot for them.
     

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