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? for you Fender 'J Bass' gurus

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Bass Hound, Aug 21, 2000.


  1. Bass Hound

    Bass Hound

    Aug 17, 2000
    I have been told the following by various people in music and guitar stores. This "story" is pieced together from at least 10 different sources. In short, it goes like this;
    The "J Bass" was a product of Fender's r&d. The person responsible for the final product was a man named Aims.
    When Leo sold out in the mid-60s, Aims left the company and began to produce his own bass guitar in 1967. It was in every way an exact replica of the Fender bass with the exception of the script "A" on the chrome bridge cover and the name "Aims" on the head stock and the bolt-on neck re-inforcement plate was blank. He purchased the tuners, bridges, pick-ups, etc., etc. from the same suppliers that he had used at Fender.
    Apparently, CBS/Fender never pursued legal action againts Aims because the J Bass patent had Aims' name on it along side Leo Fender's.
    So, two questions; Is that the real story?
    Are the Aims basses, which seem to be very rare, so rare in fact that very few people even know about them, worth anything?
    Main reason I ask is that I need insurance coverage on my good++ condition '70 Aims bass and I can't get it without an appraisal.
    Thanks all,
     
  2. Rumblin' Man

    Rumblin' Man Banned

    Apr 27, 2000
    Route 66
    Could you post a picture?

    I've never heard of Aims nor do I recall seeing his name in any of the books about the Fender company I've read.

    I tried doing an on-line patent search but the on-line searches don't go back far enough.
     
  3. gmstudio99

    gmstudio99

    Mar 11, 2000
    Cleveland, OH
    The only place I've ever heard this is here on Talkbass.

    I read it on the internet, therefore it must be true, right? :D:D:D:D:D:D

    -GM
     
  4. Bass Hound

    Bass Hound

    Aug 17, 2000
    I read it on the internet, therefore it must be true, right? :D:D:D:D:D:D

    -GM [/B][/QUOTE]
    Actually, other than my post, I've never read anything concerning Aims basses on the internet, albeit I have tried almost every major guitar site and used every possible search engine!
    The whole story, in short form, above, was related to me by my uncle when he gave the bass to me. I have heard bits of it over the years that support it in part but no one person has been able to verify or, more importantly, discount all or any part of it.
    So, I'll attempt to keep the thread open in hopes that some "old timer" can enlighten me.
    As far as posting a pic, I'll need to get one scanned. Part of my frustration has been, even with bass in hand, I can't get an appraisal for insurance because they don't recognize the name "Aims". I have been told by 3 stores that if it were a 1970 Fender, it would appraise @ $3K to $5K, possibly higher!
    Thanks,
     
  5. Basshound, with a grain of salt, I took your story over to the Fender Discussion Page and ran it up the flagpole. The results were not very encouraging. Steve Barr is the proprietor of Vintage Bass Trading Co. and is one VERY knowledgable person. He has never heard of an Aims bass. That doesn't mean that it isn't true, just that one of the nations top (and I do mean top) authorities on the subject hasn't had any experience with this bass.

    I was hoping for a response from Bill Bolton, who is probably even more of an expert in field of Fender Bass guitars. Hell, I know he is! He even maintains a serial number list of all of the basses ever made. Unfortunately he didn't respond. Perhaps you should take this item to them directly and see if you can stir up some discussion.

    I must warn you however, if this is true you will probably be starting and absolute stampede to find these things!
     
  6. Bass Hound

    Bass Hound

    Aug 17, 2000
    Thanks, Hambone.
    Can you direct me to the people you mentioned? post a link?
    Thanks again.
     
  7. Here you go:

    http://www.fenderforum.com

    Steve Barr posts to this forum under the name "Dude" or "The Dude". Perhaps you can get his email from the listing by looking for that name.
     
  8. Dude

    Dude Commercial User

    Mar 19, 2000
    AZ
    Owner: The Dude Pit Forum (closed) Producer: School of Bass
    Here I am...sorry I don't get over here very often. I've never heard that story before but send me some pics of the bass and I'll look into it further.
     
  9. pregu

    pregu

    Aug 21, 2005
    My dad owns an Aims bass which he purchased new back in the '70's. The original story from this thread is the basic story he was told by the store owner when he bought it. I'm really curious to find out more about it and the legitimacy of the story but not so much how much it's worth(if it's worth a lot my dad probably won't let me borrow it any more :)
    It's a pretty sweet bass but it's heavy as heck, its far better than any recently made fender I've ever played.
     
  10. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    California
    Man, five years between posts (literally!)

    This has to be some sort of record...

    Shows people are using the search function... :D
     
  11. i'd say... that is weird. i'd like to know the outcome of this though... was the story true?
     
  12. RobertUI

    RobertUI Thumper Supporting Member

    Apr 7, 2005
    Herndon, VA - NoVa
    seems kinda odd that in 5 years, there's no more information on this bass. i also find it odd that the only 2 people who have ever heard of it registered JUST to post on that topic (ok, maybe they posted a couple random comments).

    i hate to be a nay-sayer, but due to the fact that there are no pictures of the bass posted and no actual "facts" related to the posters or the bass, i have to call BS on this posting.

    maybe i'm just cranky today :rolleyes: but those are my thoughts.
     
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Let me guess. You got the story from the guy who sold it to you.
     
  14. kserg

    kserg

    Feb 20, 2004
    London, UK
    And why is this in misc... you guys didnt have bass section 5 years ago? :)
     
  15. okonacat

    okonacat

    Aug 18, 2007
    I haven't seen the Aims Jazz, but I did purchase an Aims copy of the EB-3 this summer. It seems to have been assembled between 1967-70. Pots and pickups date from 1964 I believe. The body, hardware and electronics are hard to tell from a Gibson. It looks like he got his parts from the same supplier as did Gibson. The neck is bolt on, 30" scale, fast, with a maple fretboard, and mother of pearl "Aims" where the Gibson logo would be. This bass looks and sounds great, and I wouldn't trade it for the Epiphone model, or any of the lawsuits. I also paid far less than the other EB copies go for. I would be happy to post pics, if anyone is still interested, but in the meantime, here is an Aims ad...
     
  16. Gee, a third user that registered in August, only has a post or two, but has info on the "Aims" bass? I'm smelling ongoing scam.....
     
  17. okonacat

    okonacat

    Aug 18, 2007
    Gee, I think someone just made a disparaging remark about me. That's not a very nice welcome, jtk. No, the Aims bass is not some mythical creature like the jackalope, and that's real MOP on the headstock.
     
  18. R Acree

    R Acree

    Oct 15, 2007
    When I was in college in the '70's (NC State School of Design '78) I often went to see Jerry Peek play at local clubs in bands such as Terra Nova, Glass Moon, 3PM. After consuming more than a reasonable amount of beer, I convinced myslef that I should learn to play. Funds were tight so I bought a used Aims Bass. I don't remember the story the salesman told me, but it was something similar to the one in the opening post.

    I never learned to play, lack of talent and dedication being major factors. Anyway, I still have the bass. Tonight I pulled it out of the closet to replace the 30 year old strings because my 14 year old daughter has expressed some interest in learning to play. Out of curiousity I googled Aims Bass and stumbled on this thread. Not much of a contribution other than to confirm that the brand does exist if nothing else. Mine isn't for sale, probably not worth much anyway so if that's a scam, I'm not really gaining anything.
     
  19. Joey3313

    Joey3313

    Nov 28, 2003
    I don't know about that "not worth much" statement. There is a large (and I mean, like, huge) desire for "vintage" instruments. Everyone wants that old school mojo.

    And sitting in a closet for years, untouched, if it is in great condition, there would definately be some buyers.

    I mean, if you were to try and sell it. I hope your daughter enjoys it.
     
  20. ChevelleSS

    ChevelleSS

    Nov 12, 2007
    I have never heard this story, but if its true I'll be glad. I didn't think that my AIMS was really worth anything since I've never read or heard anything about them.[​IMG]