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can anybody ID my kramer??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by w6za, Mar 24, 2003.

  1. w6za


    Mar 18, 2003
    Malmö, Sweden
    i got it few months ago. the former owner told me it's made in 1973. but that's impossible. the first kramers were made in 1976. or??
    the serial number on the neckplate is A0683.
    is it possible to ID the production year of kramers with the serial number??

  2. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    From the photo, you have what was known as a DMZ-4000. The fiorst of these came out around 1979 and had black DiMarzios with trapezoidal pickup mounting rings.


    Around 1980 they switched to cream DiMarzios with no mounting ring.


    Both versions had a switch for the dual pickup wiring modes (series/parallel I think, possibly coil taps...can be seen in above pic). There was also a version with an onboard preamp (DMZ-4001).

    Around 1982 natural finishes became uncommon and solid colors were used instead. Also, a small cutout was added to the body below the bridge. Many had black pickups again.


    So my best guess is around 1981-82 for your bass because it's natural but lacks both the toggles and the body cutout; also note the location of the knobs in the pics.
  3. I dunno. judging from those pics, i'd say it's a real Kramer neck on a homemade body. the body doesn't match any of those pictures, and that upper horn looks really strange to me. i thought maybe someone modified the horn from the second reference picture, but i think the lower bouts are wider, and it's not easy to add material to a bass....... the horn shape looks most like the third reference pic, but the shape of the bottom is different........ as usual, just my opinion, but that body certainly doesn't match any of the other three.
  4. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Nope, it's the original Kramer body--I had the higher-end version (body laminates, crown inlays, P/J pickups) back in the late 70's. The model names were so distinctive and easy to remember. :rolleyes:

    The early ones all had bigger P-shape bodies like the ones in brian's links. Then, they came out with a top-of-the-line model like mine with the smaller body shape (around '77-78?), and then gradually added more models with that shape. Later, Kramer stared doing the "metal" (as opposed to "aluminum") thing and went from natural finishes to solid colors like lavender, plus added the little indentations at the bottom, like in the last link. Things went downhill from there, as I recall...

  5. w6za


    Mar 18, 2003
    Malmö, Sweden
    thanks a lot for the information. I really appreciate it :)
    but does anyone of you know what wood is it made of? it looks
    really nice. curly on the neck inlays :)
    and i found 1 more difference- on my kramer the strap button is on the neckplate, not on the horn. and because of that, it has the most "impressive" neck dive I've ever seen.
    and one more thing: i don't think the tone & volume knobs on my bass are original. they look like usual stratocaster knobs. Is it possible to buy knobs somewhere that look like kramer knobs ??
  6. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    I'm pretty sure your bass is maple--all the early Kramers I remember were maple or walnut or some combination of the two.

    It's been a long time since I owned it, so I don't remember where the strap button was located on mine--it could have been on the neck plate, though. With the upper horn being as small as it is, I cam imagine Krame may have been scared about it breaking or something...

    The knobs on yours may or may not be original, but mine had Gibson-style "speed knobs", like this:


    You could order them from someplace like Stewart_Macdonald ( http://www.stewmac.com ), but most music stores that carry guitar parts should carry them.

  7. I have a Kramer F2000 guitar (not bass) and it's got fender style knobs on it. maybe they never had their own style of knobs? from the information found online, i've dated mine at around 85-87. i think i remember it being 87, but i'm not positive. it was about 5 years ago that i did the research. it's got the pointy headstock with the 3d lettering...if that helps anyone. i know this is a lower-end model....perhaps lowest end, so the mor expensive models may have had their own knob style.
  8. dls59

    dls59 Supporting Member

    My DMZ-500 has the black speed knobs, and is walnut and maple. I think the knobs are original equipment.