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Parker Club

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by kingofthestring, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. kingofthestring

    kingofthestring

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    I've searched for it and theres none so i will make one.

    pics preferably

    #'s will be givin by the first 3 members
  2. kingofthestring

    kingofthestring

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  3. Marcury

    Marcury High and Low Supporting Member

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    They're interesting basses, but i'll bet it's going to be a small club.
  4. xbmedic

    xbmedic

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    I would like to be a member of the exclusive Parker Club. I have a silverburst PB-41 just like yours.

    [​IMG]
  5. rick4001s

    rick4001s

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    I want to join!
    Here's my previously gold burst PB41 Hornet.
    Now its taxi cab yellow!
    luv it heaps :bassist:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
  6. xbmedic

    xbmedic

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    According to the OP, we get to give out the #'s. So here we go:


    kingofthestring - #1

    xbmedic - #2

    rick4001s - #3


    Awesome! We have a club!:hyper::bassist:
  7. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    Disclosures:
    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I will ask to join the Parker bass club, and will gladly accept #4. As the last post was nearly 3 years ago, I agree that it will be/is a small club. I really don't think much of popularity contests anyway. All a club is is a gathering of people around a common interest regardless of size/numbers.

    So, let's get on w/it. I've been drawn to guitar/bass design from an early age. So when I first saw the Parker Fly guitar in the early 90's, I was attracted to many of its attributes both aesthetically and functionally. I liked the bass versions (Fly/Fly Mojo) but they were way out of my price range, so I was content to admire from a far and never had one in my hands. I was introduced to the Parker Hornet [2006] 4-string a little over a year ago. I bought one on eBay as a 'as is' broken factory reject for cheap. This was the dense foam/epoxy shell bodied, synthetic-board version which I'll call [gen 1]. Apparently the unorthodox materials (made in Indonesia) had issues. This one had a de-lamination of the fingerboard at the nut, and a separation at the neck-pocket of the neck-plank from the body. I figured maybe I could repair it and if not, the parts were worth the cost of admission.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    I did repair it successfully, and treated it w/a custom Gildaxe gilded and etched silver-leaf finish. More on this later. :ninja:
    [​IMG]
    I shot this before I re-installed the battery box
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    On to the bass itself - well, it certainly looked rad, but how will it play/sound? It was broken before I actually heard it so it was a crap-shoot. I was more than pleased to find that it sounded great and I loved the feel. The EMG's resonate nicely through this strange body composition and it really cuts through in a live mix. It has a distinctively modern sound, but you can dial a big fat round sound if need be. Sort of like a RIC 4000 series on steroids. Love the 24 fret/34" scale neck and there's not a dead spot on it - every note is clear and rich. It lead me to look deeper into these basses. I found that [gen 2] Hornets were made of traditional materials (wood) and accepted building techniques including full-length neck-thru. I also noticed the Hornets were not made after (08?) and they usually died on the vine when being re-sold (for cheap) on ebay. I figured this is what the [gen 1] issues caused. (a justifiably skeptical buyer)

    As an overview, the [gen 1]'s that are still in one piece, and the [gen 2]'s that are solid/stable are great basses and very underrated instruments indeed. For the price those are being resold, I'd say it's a real bargain. The looks might not be for everyone, but it's well balanced and the ergo contouring of the body is well designed.
    I like this bass so much I bought a Hornet [gen 2] 5-string and it arrives tomorrow! I'll be posting pics and a review later. :hyper:
  8. Ender_rpm

    Ender_rpm Supporting Member

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    I have a 1996 Fly Deluxe 6 string, but I don't think that counts :) Didn't really start playing bass full time until 02 or so, so it was (and remains) my main electric. But for some reason, I just can't love the basses....
  9. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member

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    Back quite a few years ago, I saw Steve Swallow's custom-built Ken Parker bass, and was very excited to hear that Parker was going to manufacture a bass (thinking it would be like Steve's).

    It turned out to resemble it in profile only. Kinda disappointed.

    Wilser Ramirez built one "in the manner of" the original, much closer with all the exotic sculpturing of the body. Much closer than the flattened, kinda blah production model.

    Attached Files:

  10. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member

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    ... And, what's the lowdown on that 'Gildaxe" leaf finish?... pretty cool!
  11. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

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    Tell me about it!

    I saw Swallow performing with his Parker sometime in...uh...early 1990s? (with Mick Goodrick, John Abercrombie, & Adam Nussbaum) and I was completely blown away by the very unique sound & appearance of that instrument.

    And I was really impressed when the original Parker Fly Deluxe guitars came to market (and still kick myself to this day for not buying one off a friend who offered his for $900).

    And then those Parker basses hit the market and I was like
    [​IMG]
  12. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member

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    ...and you KNOW, especially with that epoxy-coated molded foam body construction technique, they COULD have given us a much more interesting, contoured offering.
  13. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    musician/artist/owner - Gildaxe
    I got the Parker 5 earlier today and started putting it through its paces. So before I get into some of the recent posts, I just want to go over this bass. It's a very well made, well designed and attractive instrument. Satin finished spalted/flamed maple face w/mahogony core, multi-lam, ebony-board neck-thru w/a brass nut and string-thru. The hardware is matt/brushed gold and the tuners are standard modern style compared to the larger carbon ones on the 4 string along with EMG pu's/active electronics similar to the 4 string. I will be installing a new set of strings soon as the ones on there are a bit tired from use. Frets are good and action is nice and low.

    Now to the sound/tone/playability; my 1st impression is that it sounds different from the 4 string. Not better or worst, but different. Wood compared to that strange dense foam/epoxy coating, which strangely enough sounds really great! The old strings may also be colouring this opinion and I feel I'll have to leave it at that for now until they are replaced.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Ok, so now on to the recent posts - talk about waking a sleeping bear! I wasn't aware of the heavily sculpted custom Swallow Parker and agree that the production model was generally based on it and not representative of the artisan craft-work of it's source. Granted. Starting from there, I still feel what was done design-wise on the production models was noteworthy. If KP would have been content to produce a few basses a year, then those artisan masterpieces would have been prohibitively expensive and rightly so. The redesigned production model w/bowed ergonomic body and unique profile/headstock in my opinion was a successful variation on a theme, especially when considering production restraints/needs. And this is just covering design which was only part of what made the elite instruments special including exotic materials and Fishman piezo electronics. Ken Parker was and continues to be a visionary, and these products were the result of his attempt to marry those design concepts w/commercial production.

    For the record, I realize these made in Indonesia instruments are post-Ken Parker and are the product of the current owners of that brand and should be judged accordingly.

    At the end of the day, I feel that choosing one instrument to play over another is a very personal and subjective endeavor. To each their own. But if you have the opportunity to play one, you may be surprised when you end up liking it. ;)
  14. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    It's a bit of a teaser - Gildaxe.com will be launching soon. Stay tuned...
  15. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    true enough - food for thought for future guitar designers
  16. gumbystuff

    gumbystuff Supporting Member

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    I had a PB41 Hornet which was nice, but not in the same league as my FB4 Fly.

    Check out the Fly specs:
    • 7.4 pounds
    • Sitka spruce body
    • Quilted maple top and back
    • Curly maple headstock
    • Mahogany neck wrapped in carbon fiber
    • Carbon-fiber composite fingerboard
    • 34” scale
    • 3/4” string spacing at the bridge
    • 10"-15" conical section fretboard radius
    • GraphTech nut
    • Stainless steel frets
    • 2 custom DiMarzio Ultra Jazz humbucking pickups
    • Active Fishman EQ
    • Fishman piezo system provides acoustic like tones
    • Lightweight aluminum locking Sperzel tuners
    • Made in the USA
  17. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    Nice! Sort of the higher-end version of the [gen 2] Hornet. (or more like what the Hornets were based on) I've seen pics of the stealthy carbon fibered neck and piano-black bodied Fly Mojo - pretty awesome. What year was your Fly produced? How did it compare sonically to the PB41? The general comparison so far for the 2 Parker basses I now own are that the 4 string is tonally very resonant and chime-y, like I said - a RIC on steroids. The 5'r is deeper sounding, (more woody) but a bit less punchy w/more mid-range. It is also set up differently with V/pu blend/T/B compared to VN/VB/B/T on the 4. I think once I put on new strings and get familiar w/the different settings I'll be dialing in what I like. It would be nice to have the piezo option, but I have fretless basses for that! :smug:

    Let's hear from some more past and present Parker bass owners/players. :bassist:
  18. gumbystuff

    gumbystuff Supporting Member

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    It's a 2004. The Fly DiMarzio Ultra Jazz pickups have a clearer, more defined tone with huge bass and treble boost available. The neck and fret work are the best I have played.

    Here is a link to more detailed pics and info:
    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f126/fs-only-parker-fly-fb4-4-string-usa-made-$1400-908756/
  19. JIO

    JIO Gold Supporting Member

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    It's a 2004. The Fly DiMarzio Ultra Jazz pickups have a clearer, more defined tone with huge bass and treble boost available. The neck and fret work are the best I have played.

    Thanks! I'd like to know more about these instruments. Do you think the Indonesia made foam/epoxy shelled Hornets were KP's concept or the company that bought his brand? They were made post KP, so I assume he was out of the process by then.
  20. gumbystuff

    gumbystuff Supporting Member

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    Not sure about the Hornet history. I'm pretty sure Ken was not involved with the Hornet series.

    Here's some more pics:http://www.talkbass.com/forum/f126/fs-only-parker-fly-fb4-4-string-usa-made-$1400-908756/

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