Fodera and f-Clef Basses The Real Deal

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Just Thumpin', Jan 23, 2009.

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  1. zeb_bass


    Oct 27, 2007
    Berlin Germany
    I am really suprised how humble and forgiving the folks on the forum are especially towards the Fodera guys...

    For me this is quiete the bomb.... this is the financial crisis soap bubble equivalent in the bass building world....

    Not that Mike´s posts did reveal anything new....basically we had knew all that stuff before...but now its officiall! That´s crazy stuff.

    Fodera Fclef and BW are all the same slouches to me!! Sorry....

    Come on how many times have Vinny and Joey claimed their NYC Basses are made in Brooklyn. Now they are made in Japan....

    I would not be surprised if they are finally made in south east asia now ....maybe with a little help of childrens´ labor ....and sold with a 4000% margin. ;-)

    that´s pretty messed up....and thats surely not the way to do business.

    I have personally never had a great appreciation for Foderas overpriced and overly decorated in cheesy burly spalted woods pieces of work....but this is too much. And puts them out of the business for me.
  2. thepontif


    Apr 24, 2004
    Designer Fodera Guitars/Michael Pope Design, Inc., Trickfish Amplification
    The NYC parts are fabricated in Japan from Fodera's stock of wood, and assembled and set up in Brooklyn. I've never known anyone from Fodera to say anything to the contrary.

    A little hysterical, don't you think? This is all in the interest of transparency, not deception. Rage all you want, but that statement was ignorant and hateful. I'm done with this.

  3. JazzyLambert


    Dec 8, 2008
    i want a fodera monarch so bad that i can't sleep at night
  4. allexcosta


    Apr 7, 2004
    Do companies really need to tell everyone about their procedures?
    I guess not...
    When you buy a can of coke do you really care if that high-fructose corn syrup is made from Californian corn or maybe Venezuelan corn?
    There's laws for this and unless they're breaking the laws it comes down to "if you like it, buy it, if you don't..."
    These guys don't owe us any explanations, although it's good for their image to come out clean on these things.
    When you buy a Fodera bass you're also buying the right to use the brand and the status that it gives to you. I've owned several Fodera NYC's through the years and sold them all because they don't really do anything for me, but to each their own.
    Also, I don't really remember Fodera guys saying these are made in NYC...
  5. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    Oh, I doubt that...
  6. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    ***?? :rollno:
  7. Low-bs

    Low-bs Guest

    Feb 14, 2008
    I appreciate Mike coming on here and tell us what he knows, however, as he said himself he may not know the entire story and all the details.

    I was told ( when I asked) from the guys in Japan that in fact NYCs were also made in the same shop as the other two. Granted this was over a year ago. Makes some sense too if you look at the specs, wood, pups, pre's, HEEL CARVE, and buisness connection between the people behind all three brands. For the longest time and from the beginning BW, NYC, and FClef were NOT explicit in declaring on their sites the exact origin of the basses- IMO led people to believing ( at least NYC and FClef's cases) that they were in fact made in the US. Thats just my feeling about it. MTD, Dingwall, Brubaker, Lakland, Sadowsky and many others do declare it easily and transparantly.

    No matter what is told here I still find it suspicious too that Fodera would buy wood here, ship it all the way over to Japan for cutting and then ship it all the way back. Could be, but even long does the wood have to be sitting in Brooklyn for it to be considered "wood from Fodera". They could have just went out selected a big pile and have it shipped to Japan too- is that "wood from Fodera's Brooklyn shop"? The only reason I'm bringing this is because Fodera claims it to shore up the image of NYCs being a true Fodera 'brand" or bass. Otherwise, I dont care either, its just a bass that you like or not. But if Fodera brings it up as a marketing line then its fair to question it.

    IMO BW is the only co of the three that has credibility. Its obvious that they are made in Japan, and that was obvious from the beginning, and they also offer it a more reasonable price than the other 2 while at the same time being essentially the same bass.
  8. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    Yep...I knew this was not over.
  9. Low-bs

    Low-bs Guest

    Feb 14, 2008

    You have absolutely nothing of any substance to offer this discussion. Nothing but off the cuff meaningless crap that we had to read before. If you have any real information to add to the topic then I'd like to hear it. Well maybe not..but at least you'd be more susbstantial useful poster.

  10. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    Wait, you actually feel that your post has substantial value???

    That's a good one.

    I shall continue to post and for some reason you will continue to read them.
  11. Mark Wilson

    Mark Wilson Supporting Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    Toronto, Ontario
    Endorsing Artist: Elixir® Strings
    None of these posts were valuable.

    Please, move on guys.
    This is your first, and only warning or this will be closed.
  12. I thought TB was the place for bassists to talk about.. well.. basses? Whether or not a person is a perspective buyer or not, any information regarding specific basses, amps or any other bass related product is beneficial. As soon as said information is suppressed, TB (for me at least) loses its value. I have been following this thread (as well as past threads on Fodera/f-Clef/Bottom Wave) and something is definitely strange. Just a side-note, on the Fodera NYC Empire Bass page, it does not mention that the bass is made (partially, right?) in Japan.
  13. smakbass

    smakbass Smakkin basses for 25 years..

    Aug 6, 2002
    Vancouver Canada
    Actually lots of asian manufacturers use North American wood. Its actually not that expensive to ship West to East as there are so many containers coming from the east they are desperate for any freight headed in the other direction.
  14. peterpalmieri

    peterpalmieri Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Babylon, NY
    I don't agree, first IMO if your buying a Fodera for status purposes I am not shocked that they didn't do anything for you, most people buy them because they love how they sound and play, again IMO but I think many feel the same way.

    As for "laws" there is a big difference between legal obligations and what the consumer demands of a company. A can of soda is not a good comparison.

    I can call up or walk into Roger Sadowsky's shop as one example and get as much detail as to satisfy my curiosity, read interviews and watch video's where he explains his process and philosophy.

    I don't mean to direct this at any company in particular but if Roger can be that transparent, hit a similar price point and make a great bass as can many others......Why shouldn't we demand this of others especially those with a lesser reputation, Fodera excluded of course..

    This is driven by consumer demand, Roger embraces the opportunity to discuss his process, again IMO I don't own a Sadowsky. Of course some people don't care about the process and are willing to buy from a company that doesn't provide that, personal choice.

    I just don't get why some are so shocked that people like to ask questions and know what their buying. On the other hand to imply that Foderas are made in 3rd world countries by children just brings a decent discussion to a new low!
  15. west*coast*bass

    west*coast*bass Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2003
    Agoura Hills, CA
    My apologies to those who I may have offended with my less than serious remarks. I do agree with TB'er Marcus and thank him for his post.

    My issue with this thread and the other F-Clef thread that was closed earlier in the month is that people are asking questions regarding business practices for the 3 specific companies. The fact that these 3 companies have not clued us all in to the way they work is not new in the business world. I doubt that Dell or HP will divulge where all of their components are made just because someone asked.

    There must be things that are kept private when running a company. You may not like that some of the info is not divulged and I applaud those companies that do have total transparency, but this is the way it is in business. There may be or have been contractual agreements in place that warrant the secrecy. We all choose to do business with whomever we want and I understand that some require detail to the infinite degree but please understand that not everyone shares the same opinion.

    Mike Pope chimed into this thread and was greeted with one hand and slapped with the other (slight comedy slant here...). I am gonna go out on a limb and suggest that he is the only person on TB that can accurately speak to the questions that have come up within this topic as he has had a working relationship with these companies.

    I am no expert on all things F-Clef, Bottomwave or Fodera. I think all of the products look and sound great.

    Low-bs, please accept my apology for my frivolity.
  16. allexcosta


    Apr 7, 2004
    That's not what I said... Some people do it, and that's fine... I bought the NYC's to try them out and since I didn't like them they are gone...

    I don't see the difference, it's just a product that you buy if you want...

    What if Fodera doesn't want to be transparent? It's their choice, isn't it? They still sell basses. Sometimes a company wants some kind of myth or mystery associated with their products. It adds to the desirability sometimes...
  17. If i learned anything from this whole thread its...

  18. hippiesandwich


    Aug 29, 2003
    Coarsegold CA
    Affiliated with Looperlative Audio Products
    I just purchased a NYC PJ5 at NAMM. Joey and I were talking about the bass while I was taking it for a test drive and he noted (among other things) that it had an Indian Rosewood board so I'm pretty sure we can assume that he was involved in the wood selection process. When I asked about the pickups he also noted that the P pickup was completely custom done in-house and he was quite proud of old school tone it produced (it sounds KILLER). I'm not really concerned at all about where the bass was "built" or by whom. The tone, playability (weight, balance, neck profile), and overall attention to detail (fret work, fit & finish, etc.) are all world class. I got myself a great playing and great sounding bass at (IMO) a great price and I couldn't be happier. Hopefully that counts for something.
  19. peterpalmieri

    peterpalmieri Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Babylon, NY
    You said "When you buy a Fodera bass you're also buying the right to use the brand and the status that it gives to you."
    I don't buy that, at least the musicians I know, I have no clue who makes their instrument or what it's worth I just know how they sound and play and I know the same is said for me.

    The difference between a can of soda and a boutique bass is $1 vs. $3000-$5000 over $10k if your talking Fodera. One is a durable good and the other is perishable....

    That's ok if a company doesn't want to be transparent it's their choice. IMO the best customer is a well educated, when you make a choice based on facts your chances of being a satisfied customer is higher that's good for everyone.

    The guy that bought an FClef and found BW stamped on the neck, researched and found a very similar if not identical instrument can be had for much less direct from BW. The owner of Fclef instead of explaining things to all of us basically said everything is a big secret and called people names. Bernie Madoff just stole billions from allot people.

    Seriously if you don't do your homework...well....:rollno:
  20. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    As someone who may never be in the market for a Fodera, especially a new one, it would not be a big deal to me if Foderas were made in Japan. Japan is by no means a cheap labour country. I recently priced a Metro UV70 five, and was nearly $2,900. If Metros had the chambered bodies and the same top wood options as NYC Sadowskys, they would be pushing $4,000 also. STR basses and AtelierZ also don't come cheap. As others said, the only problem with Fodera hypothetically making basses in Japan would be misleading.

    I have no inside knowledge whatsoever, this is just my opinion.:)
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Sep 24, 2021

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