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Help ID this old bass (60s Japan?)

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by DanAdams, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. DanAdams

    DanAdams Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2013
    Hi. this is my first post here, I hope the pics work.

    So I picked up this bass on ebay super cheap thinking it would just be a cool wall decoration, it was pretty trashed and still seemed to have the original strings on it (three left and completely tarnished)
    There are no names or holes or scratches where a name may have been.
    It had obvious problems that seemed mostly like poor quality control at the factory. The biggest problem was the strings were not centered on the neck as if the neck was not attached or straight. I ended up switching out the old two saddle bridge for a cheap 4 saddle bridge I had kicking around, and I moved the bridge location so the strings would be centered on the neck. I thought this would be much easier than dicking around with the neck.
    It's nice that it has the bridge cover, this way it still looks original.
    The neck seems to be made of a maple ply laminate as seen on the headstock picture.
    I did not remove the neck. Many years ago I messed stuff up with a neck so I now I won't remove one just to satisfy my curiousity.
    there is no real nut, but a loose wooden string guide setting up the strings to sit on a fret were a nut usually is.
    Once I got strings on it the D string buzzed when open so I ended up putting a thin layer on solder on the 'nut fret' thus rising it enough so an open D does not buzz.

    I plays surprisingly well.
    just by the looks of it I'll bet it came from that Jappan Gakki Factory, but I'm not sure.
    Has any one seen one like this? Orgins? years?


  2. DanAdams

    DanAdams Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2013
  3. [​IMG]

    I dig it! The headstock reminds me of sloth.
  4. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    I had a Teisco guitar that was a Vox Phantom copy. It had that same "80 pieces of laminate" neck, and a zero fret.

    I wonder if someone made their own body and stuck the Teisco hardware and neck on to it. My Teisco had a plywood body too, that looks like a nice single piece of mahogany. I've never seen a vintage Japanese guitar with a nice natural wood finish like that.
  5. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147

    DIY parts bass of Japanese parts and home-made body/pickquard.
  6. DanAdams

    DanAdams Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2013
    OK, I'll believe that, but it's no home made pickgaurd. it has factory bends all around, and when I took off a knob I could see just a little bit of a plastic sheathing that I believe at one time must have covered the pick gaurd.
    Also if it was a custom pick gaurd they probably would have made something more suited to the shape of the bass.
  7. jakelly

    jakelly Supporting Member

    Nov 8, 2009
  8. stonewall


    Jun 14, 2010
    looks homemade to me...take the neck off what year is it.
  9. cdef


    Jul 18, 2003
    This "Gemini" is the closest I've found to a match:

    ] 4491986gemini_body.

    The pickguard and pickup look the same, at least. There's no telling
    who made these, but I'd maybe guess Guyatone. Some of the
    early Kent and Domino imports that they supplied have very
    similar features.

    It kind of looks like the headstock has been reshaped and converted
    to 3+1. The G tuner seems to be mounted upside down.
  10. Runnerman

    Runnerman Registered Bass Player Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 2011
    Looking at the fit of the pickguard compared to the body shape, I would say it's not original. Nobody would design an original pickguard to be that far off. It may be a factory made piece but would wager not on this bass. I agree with the DIY opinion.
  11. DanAdams

    DanAdams Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2013
    thanks cdef, that is absolutly the pickgaurd, that is also the bridge I had. I'm satisfied, I'll call this mystery solved.

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