Carvin LB70 ?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by VicB, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    Hi, I hope I'm doing this right. It is my first post here and it really just a shot in the dark.
    I recently purchased this bass for $20.00. I of course bought it without hesitation knowing full well that it might not work at all. If anything, it was a parts purchase.
    1) The first problem is that I'm not sure if I've identified it since someone refinished it or it was from some kind of a kit.
    2) It has some wires off or missing from the battery compartment and I have never seen this kind of amp before.
    I really love how this bass feels and it would be a shame to scrap it for parts if there is a way to get it working.
    I will post pictures once I figure out how.

    I also wanted to mention that I think this site is pretty awesome. There is so many goodies buried in this site. It will take quite sometime to read through here. Kudos to the site owner for creating this forum.

    Attached Files:

    BurnOut, jefff100 and Bassist4Eris like this.
  2. darwin-bass

    darwin-bass Supporting Member

    Mar 29, 2013
    Salem OR
    Bolt-on neck or neck through? I'm thinking it is the bolt-on version. Very likely was the kit with a home finish.
    jfh2112 and Reedt2000 like this.
  3. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    Bolt on for sure. Finish is rather terrible.
  4. Trouztrouz


    Feb 6, 2013
    Is there a serial number on the jack plate?
  5. Basshappi


    Feb 12, 2007
    You have a Carvin B4. This model (and the 5 string B5) were parts kit basses sold by Carvin for people who wanted to finish and assemble their own bass at a very reasonable price. They offered guitar kits as well.

    You can find pretty much everything there is to know about them here;
    The Carvin Museum

    Kiesel (Carvin) still offers these kits as the BK40/BK50 and they are still a great deal for anyone wanting to assemble their own bass.
  6. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Yeah likely a kit. They came with everything.

    My brother got me one years ago. It turned out pretty cool. Later on I gave it to a friend to finish. The finish turned out pretty rough. Butbthe bass player great. I wound up giving it back to him so my nieces could play around on it. I had moved on to 5 strings by then.

    @VicB making it passive will be the cheapest and simplest way to get it up and running. Then you can put an active pre in it later if you want.

    And Welcome to TalkBass!!!!!
    jfh2112 likes this.
  7. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    Does anyone know of instructions on how to make these passive? it has a pre in it but who knows how that was supposed to go. I tried to use my common sense and solder a battery to the board on the inside but that didn't work. It was clearly indicated "9v+ and 9v-" right on the PC board. Nothing :(
  8. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    No. Unless its on the inside
  9. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    MobileHolmes likes this.
  10. Ben B

    Ben B

    Jul 13, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    With no serial number and no "Carvin" logo on the head stock, it's definitely a Carvin kit. The preamp appears to be the stock Carvin preamp. The volume control should be push/pull. Pull for passive mode. In passive mode, it needs no battery installed. So, if the only problem is a battery connection, the bass should work in passive mode. The volume and pickup blend controls (the 2 big knobs) will work, but the 3 EQ controls will do nothing in passive mode.

    Nice score for $20. Why can't I find deals like this???
    jfh2112 likes this.
  11. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    That is great info. Thanks. Pulling out on the knob was like a revelation! I'm waiting for a new Gotoh battery case. I take it to the next step then. I shop at the local goodwill. On occasion the person who prices things prices low if an item looks broken. I've gotten lucky a few times.
  12. I expect that Keisel can help you sort that out.
    They would be likely be glad to sell you a new pre amp, as well,
    but it may not so much dead as not properly connected.
    For 20 bux you did great!

    If it were me, I'd find out what it needs to get the pre working
    and tear it all down to refinish and reassemble.
    Once you go through it, it will not only be a decent, functioning bass
    but also something you can look back on with pride, knowing you saved it
    and learned in the process.
    Lvjoebass and Reedt2000 like this.
  13. Hounddog409


    Oct 27, 2015
    I have a carvin lb70 from the early 90s. It is neck through. I have never seen one that's was not.

    If it's a carvin, it's a kit
    Lvjoebass likes this.
  14. Reedt2000

    Reedt2000 Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2017
    Central New Jersey
    +1 to this, my thoughts exactly :thumbsup:
  15. MotorCityMinion


    Jun 15, 2017
    If it plays and feels good prior to plugging it in, it worth some extra work, no doubt about it. IMO, that was an excellent score.
    VicB likes this.
  16. EarnestTBass


    Feb 3, 2015
    I have played a Carvin BB75 for about 20 years- with the same on board preamp and same pick ups.
    I had to replace the on board preamp after 15 years of heavy use. No biggie.
    But the second preamp went out a year ago and I was hesitant to purchase/install a third preamp from Carvin.

    When the unit failed the second time, I was forced go passive- but I learned to like it.
    Making adjustments at amp works well for me. I kinda prefer passive now.
  17. VicB


    Feb 7, 2018
    New Jersey
    I don't play out much anymore which is where I would prefer to have the punch of an active system. But I still record a lot and I prefer to be passive in that regard. I tried it last night (since it's only working passively anyway) and it has a really nice sound without doing much to it on the amp side
  18. EarnestTBass


    Feb 3, 2015
    Although I am unsure about Carvin on board bass preamps, I have been a fan of Carvin in the past. Not sure what to think about the recent corporate restructuring with Carvin/Kiesel. I would be interested to hear about current customer service experiences.

    I am assembling a Carvin B5 kit, paint is curing, the body is waiting for the neck.
    I confess that the design is stolen from Clapton's "Crashocaster" series of strats.
    An Aguilar on board preamp will be installed.

    Sometimes I am proud of my paint job. Sometimes I wonder what the heck I was thinking.
    Be inspired... or mortified.
    Anyway, I anticipate banging up the bass at parties and bars.

    Attached Files:

    Reedt2000 and MonetBass like this.
  19. MobileHolmes

    MobileHolmes I used to be BassoP

    Nov 4, 2006
    I've got a couple carvin's a tad older than that (before the 3 band pre amps and MM style pickup choice). I think their preamps are pretty much their weak link anyway. If you like how it sounds passive, just run it passive. You really aren't missing a whole lot with their preamp.
  20. Ben B

    Ben B

    Jul 13, 2006
    San Diego, CA
    Agreed. My '89 came with that 2 band pre-amp. No passive mode. Kind of blah sounding. I replaced it with the Carvin 3 band pre-amp. It sounds much better. Clearer, more punch. The 3 band has a passive mode and an internal trim, so, it's fairly flexible.

    I'm sure other preamps like the Aguilar or Batolini are a little better, but the Carvin 3 band is good enough that I don't feel there's enough justification to replace it as long as it's working. If the preamp quits or if I ever purchase a used Carvin with the 2 band preamp, I would definitely consider an aftermarket preamp.
    MobileHolmes likes this.
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