Help identifying a bass

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Chase Smith, Jun 12, 2020.

  1. Chase Smith

    Chase Smith

    Jun 12, 2020

    I work for a second hand store and we sometimes sell 'rarer' items online and one of the things I was given to look up is a bass which looks like it is a custom thing. There aren't any obvious brand markings on it but it looks like a pretty good job so I thought I could get some insight here.

    I used to lurk around this forum a long time ago when I had a czech spector and remember seeing a lot of basses that look similar but I can't remember enough to sort it out.

    I appreciate any leads, thanks.

    Attached Files:

    Skillet and jamro217 like this.
  2. Qlanq


    Jul 9, 2007
    No idea who made it. Cool-looking bass, though.
  3. Ken Smith bridge and pickup, but not a KS. At least I don't think so.

    Whatever this thing is, it's wild!
  4. DWBass

    DWBass The Funkfather

    I'm REALLY hoping somebody didn't cut up a Ken Smith Bass..............

    Probably not. Don't know of any single p/u models. Plus knobs on the bottom. Weird bass.
    adams83, HG1180 and BioWeapon like this.
  5. I have to figure the horns are too big for it to be a cut up anything :wideyed:
    Reedt2000 likes this.
  6. TrustRod

    TrustRod Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2016
    Northern California
    The knobs look like a KS preamp too.

    Is the signature supposed to say Sting?

    EDIT: Just googled Sting Signature and many look like that.
    BadJazz likes this.
  7. Chase Smith

    Chase Smith

    Jun 12, 2020

    Yeah, it is said to have been signed by Sting. I don't think it was ever verified. The store has had this bass for awhile. I think another person tried to list it as a Ken Smith custom, but I'm not sure why if it was a Ken Smith it would have a blank headstock. Tuners are also Smith. I forgot to look at the electronics today so I'll check the cavity tomorrow maybe there is something in there. It just looks unique to me I thought maybe someone might even recognize it or know the previous owner.
  8. TrustRod

    TrustRod Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2016
    Northern California
    Smith used to sell lots of parts (and maybe still does) and I've made a few basses with his bridges, preamps, and even tuners with his name on them.
  9. TrustRod

    TrustRod Supporting Member

    Mar 13, 2016
    Northern California
    The volume is likely a push pull for active/passive.
  10. The headstock being blank and not exactly like the typical KS shape is what makes me think it's not a Smith bass. In any case I don't think it would be difficult to ask the man himself.

    These are the kinds of instruments I dream of finding in a pawn shop. Weird, possible off-putting with an unknown origin, with lots of hours of chasing leads involved to figure it out. I did a little digging but the only thing I could find is a website that rehosted a photo and description from what appears to be an old eBay listing. - Ken Smith Custom One-Piece Fretless Bass w/ Dunlop Straploks - Signed by Sting

    A little further digging actually revealed another copy/paste of the old eBay ad in a French forum (you won't need to read french, see post 1274.
    Basse abominable pour vous (esthétique et/ou confort de jeu) - page 13 - Zikinf

    I guess at one point it was listed for 1900 USD on eBay but the previous owner also could not identify whether or not it was a Smith bass. Seems it had some issues with the neck as well.

    Anybody else got anything? :) The ad on eBay no longer exists and hasn't for a good while so that in itself is a dead end.
    Skillet likes this.
  11. dalkowski

    dalkowski It's "rout," not "route." Supporting Member

    May 20, 2009
    Massachusetts USofA
    Phew. I was about to ask what happened to the rest of the KS that those parts came from.
  12. abarson


    Nov 6, 2003
    Santa Cruz
    Gah! I know I've seen this recently! Damn memory...!
    Wasn't it a guy who worked in Ken Smith's shop but did a few of his own designs on the side?
    There's something unique about the main body part that the guy was trying to patent, I think.
    BioWeapon likes this.
  13. blastoff

    blastoff Supporting Member

    Sep 5, 2007
    way out west
    i think you're supposed to jam the "shovel" looking portion into the sand when a big set comes in
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  14. Probably sits between your legs so you can fake playing an upright while sitting down at your jazz gig :D

    Edit: I have come to think about my statement as a non-joke now. That might actually work!! :woot:
    design likes this.
  15. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    You are not supposed to call a bass ugly so..... I won't say that.
    Trabeen, Reedt2000 and blastoff like this.
  16. yodedude2

    yodedude2 Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    san antonio, texas
    the strap pin receptacles do make it look like it would hang almost vertically suspended from the player's body.
    BioWeapon likes this.

    MYLOWFREQ Supporting Member

    May 13, 2011
    Where's the rest of it?
    Reedt2000, FantasticFour and ajkula66 like this.
  18. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    Two words come to mind: DRINKIN' PARTY!! :)
  19. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Fancy oversized salad serving fork? My parents had one of those. Pretty sure it was mahogany.
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  20. b_carville


    Jun 26, 2008
    It kinda looks like a Wishbass but higher quality.
    Did Wishbass ever make basses with parts supplied by a customer or do custom work?