pricing a vintage p-bass??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by dfinnegan71, Jan 2, 2013.


  1. dfinnegan71

    dfinnegan71

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2008
    Location:
    Northern North East
    I am seriously considering buying a USA 1977 p-bass at my local shop and almost pulled the trigger today. It's got a lot of "mojo" which is pretty cool. But could be bad for resale. It feels absolutely marvelous in my hands and sounds...well,...like a good P bass sounds.
    My question is how do I know what a fair price is on this? He was asking 1395. than had it marked down to 1195. I asked if He'd take 1000 and he will. Take a look at the pic.
    Prices are all over the board on these I don't what to think. What are your thoughts??

    Attached Files:

  2. lavmonga

    lavmonga Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2007
    Location:
    New York, NY
    That sounds like the reason you should buy it.
  3. Salamenster

    Salamenster

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2012
    Location:
    European Mainland
    If it's a genuine '77 P-bass, why not? $1000 = €790. In Holland a NEW MIM Std. P-bass is around €600! A NEW MIA Std. P = €1100! (Don't know the USA-prices, but I think it would be slightly similar)

    If it sounds/feels good AND it's cheaper then a new MIA... Why not go for it?
  4. Spinal Tapper

    Spinal Tapper

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    That's really cool. $1000 would be a really good deal IMO

    (real) Mojo means it's a good player. Snatch it up!
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  6. dfinnegan71

    dfinnegan71

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2008
    Location:
    Northern North East
    I guess I'm not asking for a specific appraisal on this guitar, but I get your point. I should at least be a supporting member.
    And yes, the pic dosn't do the mojo justice. It's all cracked laqure all over the bass and worn out thumb mark. I like the idea of real MOJO means it's a good player.
  7. georgestrings

    georgestrings Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2005
    I think that if it plays well and sounds good - and is original - it's well worth $1k...


    - georgestrings
  8. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2003
    :cool:

    If bass is 100% original, $1000.00 is a great price for a 1977-P-Bass.
    That bass should be in the $1500.00-$1700.00 range depending on condition.
    If it has original case even better.
  9. michael_atw

    michael_atw Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    Jamestown, NY
    Looks like the original 80's case underneath it.
  10. dfinnegan71

    dfinnegan71

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2008
    Location:
    Northern North East
    Actually no, it does not have the original case. It does come with one but the shop owner told me it was not original. And my mistake it's a 1978 not a 77. Serial # starts with S 7 **** would i be correct in that it is a 1978? Does it even matter that much?
  11. Koog

    Koog Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2010
    Location:
    Central Iowa USA
    Are you kidding? It's a great player....sounds great....feels great & just right for you....everything works like it's supposed to....even if it's not 100% original it's probably worth the price. If I was in the market and experienced what you've said, I wouldn't even think about it. It would be in my studio, with me cleaning it up, restringing it with my favorite RotoSound RS 77 LD strings and setting it up to my personal prefernces.

    Don't hesitate long. If it's everything you say, it won't be around for long.

    Uh....what was the name of the store again?? Just kidding, wouldn't do that to ya.

    Good luck.

    Koog
  12. dfinnegan71

    dfinnegan71

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2008
    Location:
    Northern North East
    Don't hesitate long. If it's everything you say, it won't be around for long.


    Funny thing, it's been there awhile now. And the shop owner told me the strings were as old as he was obviously, an exaggeration, i'd guess he is in his mid 30's.

    If someone would buy my Allen Woody Rumblekat or the Warwick I just bought, I can cure this case of GAS and just get a real P-bass already!!
  13. lhoward

    lhoward Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2003
    I would:

    Buy the '78 now,

    Sell whatever later.

    I own a '78 I bought new and have NO intentions of selling it.

    Lloyd Howard
  14. Stewie26

    Stewie26 Gold Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2012
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    $1000 is an excellent price. Some day, if you ever sell it, you will get your money back and then some.
  15. Kmonk

    Kmonk

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    Oct 18, 2012
    Location:
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Disclosures:
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    Not trying to discourage you but quality was very inconsistent with 70s era Fenders. Check it out carefully but a $1,000 is a good price.
  16. bassteban

    bassteban

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2004
    Location:
    Northern California
    I'm not sure but that era may be a bit up & down w/regard to overall build quality(anyone w/firsthand experience please feel free to correct me here), explaining the fairly low price. As stated already, if it feels and sounds good, there you go. :)
  17. michael_atw

    michael_atw Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    Jamestown, NY
    Well, if that's the case under it it's the original case. It is probably more like a 1980-81. He might just be trying to date from the serial number.

    That being said, it all depends on what is original and what is not. If half the hardware is not, it is not a good a value as it looks.
  18. MIMike

    MIMike

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Location:
    West MI
    The serial number indicates it is a 77'. They did not make any basses in the 80's with a "S" series serial number. Ever since Fender started putting the serial numbers on the headstock it's been pretty easy to date them ( and pretty hard to dupe someone on its age). I just sold a 75' for $1,000...difference was, it did not feel good. The neck was chunky and uncomfortable. Someone still got a pretty good deal though. It had a cool weather checked black finish and a near mint original case.

    Buy it, it's only going to go up in value (not that you're going to sell it)!
  19. FretlessMainly

    FretlessMainly

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2010
    Source?

    This source indicates otherwise: http://home.provide.net/~cfh/fender.html#cases

    Scroll down to near the bottom of the page to "Serial Number on Peghead Decal."

    "U.S. made Fenders, starting in mid-1976 has the serial number on the peghead. Note the following number could be off as much as two years. Generally speaking, a "S" prefix equals the 1970's, "E" prefix equals the 1980's, and "N" prefix equals the 1990's.

    S1 to S5 + 5 Digits = 1979-1982
    S6 + 5 digits = 1976
    S7 + 5 digits = 1977-1978
    S8 + 5 digits = 1977-1978
    S9 + 5 digits = 1978-1981."
  20. michael_atw

    michael_atw Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2009
    Location:
    Jamestown, NY
    They made basses and guitars up until roughly '81-82 with S-serial numbers. At this point, the serial number scheme was very haphazard and is the worst way to date the instrument.

    The best ways would be: neck stamp (which is often missing), pots, routing, color, pickup bottom.

    By converse, the neck plate serial numbers are much more accurate in my experience (and that experience has included about 500 vintage Fenders and counting) with the accuracy increasing the farther one goes back.
  21. Caca de Kick

    Caca de Kick Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2002
    Location:
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Very wrong. The S serials were used well into 1982.

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