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Common problems with Fender Jazz

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SuperSluggard, Jul 7, 2004.


  1. SuperSluggard

    SuperSluggard

    Jan 2, 2004
    My friends drum teacher is looking to sell me a Fender Jazz bass for a great deal. Still, I want to make sure it is a good bass and that I really want. It's never been used, well barely, so I couldn't ask if their are any problems with it. What are some common problems with Fender Jazz basses? I want to look for these things when I play it. I know Fender doesn't make all their basses the same.
     
  2. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    well there are about 5 million types of fender jazzes out there
    mexican, japanese, american, and untold variations from each country
    that said, if it plays well, feels good and sounds good and has no obvious neck problems ya cant go wrong - just find out where it was made and what type and year and check around to see if it's a fair price
     
  3. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses, Hipshot products
    You're probably going to have to give some more detail if you want a really helpful response. What year is it? Is it and an American Fender? How much does he want for it? Some problems may be worth dealing with if it's a really good price.

    The most important things IMO are that I can set a bass up well with the action to my liking (without any buzzes), and that the electronics are all good. The things I don't like about Fender is that their workmanship isn't the highest quality. The frets usually stick out along the neck (if you rub your hand along the side you can feel the sharp edges), but this doesn't effect the sound. The strap pegs usually fall out, but you can jam them with toothpicks and/or glue them. The machine heads have play in them (at least mine did on an American P Deluxe) and that kinda sucked. There are lots of little things you can notice in the shoddy workmanship.

    I dislike Fendeer basses, but none of the problems in the newer basses I've experienced have rendered them not playable. If you're talking older fender basses then there's a whole bunch of other things you might want to look at. Warped necks, dead spots on the fretboard, other stuff there's no need to get into unless you're talking about one of these - which for some reason I don't think you are.

    Hope that was some help.
     
  4. You don't have to worry about where it came from. The American basses will have the best quality parts and electronics, but I've played Mex and MIJ fenders that sounded just as good as americans. You just have to play the instrument!
     
  5. Arthur U. Poon

    Arthur U. Poon

    Jan 30, 2004
    SLC, Utah -USA-
    Endorsing Artist: Mike Lull Custom Basses
    There's just a couple of 'problems', but IMO they're very minor: When you have the volume controls set at 'full' for both pickups, external noises (such as 60 hz hum) are cancelled. If you back the volume off on either pickup, the hum is present when you're not touching the strings(or bridge or control plate, for that matter). But the noise isn't terribly loud, not a big deal IMO. Depending on the body wood and weight, the Jazz can sometimes be 'neck heavy'. But out of the 4 Jazz basses I've owned (I still have 2) none of them have had this 'problem'. If you find the one you're interested in is neck heavy, replace the stock bridge with a Badass-II and replace the tuning gears with some ultra-light tuners. Problem solved.

    All in all, the Jazz is a well-designed bass, it's very playable, and it has a great tone. If you like how the bass sounds and how it plays (as many of us do), you're in good shape. :)
     
  6. one thing that might pop up is the bridge misalignement; but if the instrument plays good it is a minor fix anyway.
     
  7. I would sight the neck for warp or twist, and DEFINITELY try out the truss rod to see if there are "issues" (extreme tightness or jamming or worn truss nut). This is where Fender quality is notoriously lax.
     
  8. McHack

    McHack

    Jul 29, 2003
    Central Ohio!
    Common problems for any bass sounding good is, there's quite possibly a nut loose on the fingerboard.
     
  9. SuperSluggard

    SuperSluggard

    Jan 2, 2004
    Well there are no problems with this bass, plays very well. Thanks.