Has anyone played the Tobias at BNW?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Jerry J, Feb 26, 2002.

  1. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    Has anyone played the Tobias Classic 5 that they have at Bass Northwest? It seems that they've had it for quite awhile. Sure looks pretty!

    Also, has anyone played the Zon Custom at the LA Bass Exchange? They've had that one for quite some time, also.

    It always makes me wonder why some of these killer looking basses never seem to sell.
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    It looks very similar to my Tobias - I have 1274, which is also a Classic 5, but with Zebrano top. You wouldn't be able to tell them apart from the back! (Apart from chrome vs. black tuners ;) )

    If it's anything like mine, this is the best-playing and sounding bass I have ever tried! But I found mine in a similar situation in the Bass Centre in London - stores seem to "push" new lines and it was tucked away in a corner, out of the limelight!

    I presume there is not so much "mark-up" or profit on used basses - but also, you have to think about who is going to buy a "used" bass going for $2,500 or equivalent?

    People with that sort of money are going to be looking at custom basses and nice shiney new ones - I have looked at custom basses and I could have got one for less money that I paid for my Tobias - but I doubt that I could have specified something that plays and sounds as good!

    I think you also have to accept that when we get to this level people want something that looks good and that they can "show off " to their friends. The pre-Gibson Tobias's to me, are for "players only" - you only appreciate it when you actually play one! ;) Maybe there aren't so many people like this around now who appeciate something for how it sounds and plays rather than just going for the lates model or next "big thing"?
  3. theJello


    Apr 12, 2000
    Bruce I agree. I just got my pre gibson basic
    5 about 2 months ago. Lucky to even find one.
    Best playing and sounding instrument ever.
    I probably would have bought that one at bass norwest if hadnt found my basic.
    Damn suprised that one is still there.
    Btw is zebrano the same as zebra wood?
  4. I played that bass for about an half hour, and I really liked it. I found it one of the best playing 5s in the store, and the B string was superb.

    I believe that it was one of the very first units finished in Nashville from parts made in the old Tobias shop in California (see the history articles on the MTD web site).

    I was considering it's purchase when I ran into an older, 1985 pre-Gibson Tobias, which is all Zebrawood and Wenge. It's very heavy, but it speaks with authority.

    The one in BNW had a few minor dings, but overall was in vg/ex shape.


  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I think so - same wood that is. I don't think people realise how good they are until they actually pick one up and play it!
  6. theJello


    Apr 12, 2000
    I think anything before serial # 2040 (close to this anyway)was made in Cali by Mike and his crew.
    From what I have heard the early gibsons actually would not be that desirable. Even though Mike was overseeing the operation Gibson was having a "difficult" time getting the hang of it!
  7. Jerry J

    Jerry J Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2000
    P-town, OR
    The way that it goes is that serial number 2044 was the last bass built in LA. After that Gibson moved everything to Nashville. But the first Gibson era bass was 1094.

    The Classic at Bass NW is 1817. That would make it an LA built bass but post-CBS or sorry Gibson.:)

    I'd make a trip up to Seattle to give it a spin but they are closed on Saturdays, now and I rarely get a weekday off.
  8. Bass7755

    Bass7755 Supporting Member

    Oct 27, 2000
    Roanoke, Va.
    I had an early Gibson Tobias Classic 5(2079) with an Alder body and a beautiful Bubinga top. The fit and finish was top notch. It played wonderful and sounded great. I had it for about 6
    years and never had a problem with it. Man I wish I
    still had that bass!!