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Did early ESP basses have Tele-style headstocks?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by unbasslichkeit, Aug 27, 2007.

  1. Got a pretty nice P-bass copy in trade from a bandmate last week. It needed some work (new jack, tightening of neck screws, knobs, half-rounds) but I played it on the Saturday gig and it did the job. The thick maple neck was a very different feel for this Jazz Bass player of 20+ years. :bassist:

    He claims it is a very early ESP bass but it is hard to tell. The back plate was replaced so no evidence there. It has a lot of brass "gold-plated" fittings (keys, tension guide, bridge.) The electronics are standard grade Asian-made below average for 80s P-Bass copies. (It's getting a new wiring harness and a replacement pup ASAP.)

    Body appears to be ash, two tone sunburst, very thick finish, gold anodized pickguard copy. The neck (aside from the tele-style headstock) is unusual in that the fingerboard extends out over the truss rod opening.

    At this point I need pix. I'll try and get 'em tonight if the digital camera will cooperate.
  2. Mine has the P-Bass pickup only; no J pickup at the bridge. The headstock design (which is kinda unique to early ESP's) is not the same either, which is what makes me wonder is it a factory early ESP or just a Frankenbass. It's a good Frankenbass for all that...
  3. It very well might be. It'll be easier to tell when you get photos.
    Good luck with this! :)
  4. I had an ESP P-bass around 1993 I bought on St. Marks Place in the East village. Tele-headstock w/ removable ESP logo on clear plastic, red w/anodized p-guard. Great bass except for no bottom end whatsoever. Went back quickly.
  5. Joeykun

    Joeykun pronounced ジョーイくん

    Jun 22, 2007
    Shirley, MA
    Endorsing Artist: SADOWSKY / GENZ BENZ
    The mid eighties ESP Surveyor bass had a tele headstock.
  6. jgsbass


    May 28, 2003
    Floral Park, NY
    The first ESP's I ever saw came out of a small shop on 48th st in NYC. All were Fender style basses with a few cooler options available, one of which was that extra fret hanging over the fingerboard. There was also 48th St Custom, which was a larger store that had walls of ESP stuff mixed in with a lot of ( overpriced) vintage Fender and Gibson gear. My guess is that its one of the older parts basses that were assembled here. I recall them as playing and sounding pretty good compared to what Fender was making in 1982
  7. zuma


    Dec 21, 2006
    East Los Angeles

    Maybe it's a Warmoth neck? Their necks have those overhanging fretboards.

    Like this:http://www.warmoth.com/bass/necks/necks.cfm?fuseaction=include_fretboard

    You can also get their necks with that Tele headstock.
  8. EddieG


    Jan 19, 2005
    Jerry Jemmott plays a blue ESP Jazz Bass on Jaco's instructional video, which has a Tele-style headstock.
  9. cdef


    Jul 18, 2003
    If I remember, ESP used to be a parts company like Warmoth. They made all sorts of Fender-type necks and bodies in the early 80's. In 1982 I put together a bass from a '76 Fender P neck and an ash ESP J body bought new and unfinished. The ESP-brand basses came a couple of years later, but you could have assembled a whole bass from ESP parts before that.
  10. Rugaar


    Apr 11, 2007
    Here's a couple I found with a quick google search. Kinda cool.


  11. Thanks for all the valuable and highly informative replies. Here are pix of the bass I'm talking about. (The digital camera went south so these are from the cell phone - please to forgive the lousy quality.)
    Here's a shot of the neck with the extra fret:

    One other feature of this bass is the gig bag it came with; it's a nice quality piece called a 'Tough Traveler' USA made in Schenectady NY. I'm now wondering if this might be one of the 48th Street Custom ESP instruments. Once again, no way to tell for sure. Regardless, this bass is definitely gonna get some work this fall (as in gigging and hot-rodding both.)

    Now: Somebody please dare me to put a DarkStar on this puppy...:D
  12. kaymoney


    Feb 20, 2012
    Is this bass for sale?
  13. mmbongo

    mmbongo Dilly Dilly! Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2009
    Dude that was posted 8 years ago!
    scourgeofgod likes this.
  14. kaymoney


    Feb 20, 2012
    sorry ...never hurts to ask.

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