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Help me please!!! Is this worth ANYTHING?

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Biker4Him, Nov 30, 2005.


  1. O.K... here's my story.. I'm a violinist/fiddler who took up electric bass guitar 4 years ago. Now.. I want to add some upright to a few of our songs. I'd prefer EUB for the ease.. but I know that would not convey the true "experience" of playing "bass".

    So.. I'm looking all over, reading a lot here on TB, and searching the internet.. I found an ebay auction for a 1947 Kay M1... if this is a great deal... I certainly don't want someone to snatch it up... but if it's just a piece of crap.. I'd like to know.

    It appears that it has been through the ringer.. and with what appears to be part of the back cut out.. I can't imagine the sound is all that good. And those steer heads have got to go... but seriously.. can anyone tell me (without playing it, and seeing it up close) if this is just a piece of junk... or if it might be worth it, and what would I need to do to get this thing in shape...

    He lives within 30 minutes of me... but I won't have the luxury of going to see it in person until after the acution ends.
     
  2. John Sprague

    John Sprague Sam Shen's US Distributor

    Mar 10, 2003
    Rochester, NY
    Sales Manager, CSC Products Inc.
    Hi B4H,

    It's just like your fiddle. An old Kay can be worth a coupla grand if it's fully functioning and only marginally wounded. But, like your fiddle, if someone cuts a big old hole in the back, it is no longer an instrument. Appraisal: $0, may make a good clock.

    Don't tell the seller where you live, or he may just sneak over at night and leave it in your garage.

    Best bet to get an idea of how to get an entry level UB without getting ripped is to check out the newby threads here. There are a handful of good new makers and a bunch of old models you can keep an eye out for. You'll probably need at least a grand in your pocket to find something playable, $1400 is about as low as new ply basses worth owning start for.

    Good luck!
     
  3. ToR-Tu-Ra

    ToR-Tu-Ra

    Oct 15, 2005
    Mexico City
    Why on earth would someone cut a hole in the middle of the back of a bass?????? :eyebrow:
     
  4. blammo

    blammo

    Jul 26, 2004
    Hey, when that soundpost falls over, sometimes you just can't wait for a luthier.
     
  5. FredH

    FredH Supporting Member

    I bet that kay goes for $2000, cowheads, hole and all. Rockabilly guys are crazy for them kays. They'll pay twice, three times for a beat kay then for a comparable Engelhardt.
    LA guy a couple weeks ago drove down and snapped up a kay that needed at least 1k minimum worth of work to be playable. And he paid $1200 for the bass.
    Of course I have problems myself with impulse urges....
     
  6. Brent Norton

    Brent Norton

    Sep 26, 2003
    Detroit, MI
    :)

    Why, for the mini-bar, silly!
     
  7. ToR-Tu-Ra

    ToR-Tu-Ra

    Oct 15, 2005
    Mexico City
    I hadn't thought bout it that way... I'm not too fond of sticking my hand inside of my bass and moving stuff around, really scares me that I'll mess up. I think of messing around with the sound post yourself like some sorta x-treme sport of the bass world.

    Not trying to get off topic, but... I'm taking my bass to a luthier tomorrow for some bridge adjusters or maybe a whole new bridge fitted... so, any estimates so I don't get ripped off?
     
  8. glivanos

    glivanos Supporting Member

    Jun 24, 2005
    Philadelphia Area
    My local luthier charges $250 for a new adjustable bridge and set-up.

    I don't know what adding just adjusters would cost, but probably not much less since it's all in the labor. A new bridge is around $50.

    I recommend getting a new adjustable bridge and keep the old one for back-up.

    Good Luck
     
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Many EUBs can get very close to the sound of an amplified DB and if you are playing loud, amplified gigs, then it may well be the best option! :)

    You certainly won't have feedback problems....
     
  10. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    Well, I was thinking about what a very special New Year's Eve fire I could make by stuffing that Kay into my fireplace. Alas, the bid is up to $510. That's above my wood-supply budget. ;)
     
  11. dbgal

    dbgal

    Nov 28, 2005
    Idaho
    It might make an interesting centerpiece or holiday decoration- you can use the hole in the back to stuff it full of decorations & leave some showing thru the F-holes, then run garland around the FB & neck, & drape holly around the pegbox. Hang some tinsel off the pegs, & boy, who needs a tree? :p
     
  12. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Every debate on TB I've seen, confirms my opinion that eBay is good for sellers and bad for buyers!!
     
  13. John Sprague

    John Sprague Sam Shen's US Distributor

    Mar 10, 2003
    Rochester, NY
    Sales Manager, CSC Products Inc.
    Then sell it on eBay with the "flamed wood" upgrade. :smug:
     
  14. Brent Norton

    Brent Norton

    Sep 26, 2003
    Detroit, MI
    What it should confirm, Bruce, is that markets work themselves out and are indiscriminate to buyers OR sellers. If a guy bids $510 for a beat-down Kay with a hole in the back, it's worth at least that much to him. If it wasn't, he wouldn't bid that much. If anything, you should consider laying a keener eye on the bloated Kay market, not the ebay marketplace. And a little more food for thought - once ebay (and PayPal, should you finalize your ebay transaction with it) get done taking all their cuts, is not as wonderful for sellers as it may seem! ;)

    PS: I'll have some land in Florida available on ebay in the coming weeks, if anyone's interested.....................
     
  15. We've been through this at length before, obviously you only absorbed the opinions of others that reinforce your own conclusion.

    I've scooped a coupla great deals off ebay recently. Each to his/her own.
     
  16. drurb

    drurb Oracle, Ancient Order of Rass Hattur; Mem. #1, EPC

    Apr 17, 2004
    Agreed. Ebay demonstrates the marketplace in action. Truth be told, as a seller, I've always been happy to pay the associated fees, given the speed with which and price at which I've been able to sell items.
     
  17. Nuno A.

    Nuno A. Velvet Strings Customer Service

    Jul 9, 2001
    SWITZERLAND
    I've been buying and selling on ebay for 6 years now, 90% buying and 10% selling, i made terrific deals on ebay, others not so terrific but still good deals, nobody never pointed me a gun to my head forcing me to bid an amount i didnt want to... sure i dont buy on ebay something i could get cheaper on the next corner's store, i buy stuff that i either know the street price, or stuff that i just cant find easily nowhere else.... an example, i collect vintage ties, if a seller has some old ties that for him are useless and for me are collectibles, and if the ties go for a good price, we all win, all the times i sold stuff, it was a good deal for the buyers, they got something way cheaper than the street price,good deal for me because i got rid of useless stuff for me... sure im not gonna bid on a box of swiss chocolates, but maybe a guy in some country will, maybe because he cant get them there... people bid what they want,so whats the problem? i never complained for the price i paid , i already complained for the condition of the item because it was not in the condition as advertised, but i guess theres another story....
    as an example, i recently purchased a bass on ebay germany, after many emails and phone calls with the seller , i just took the chance, turned to be an outstanding bass, the best deal i ever made....
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=7358015092&rd=1&sspagename=STRK:MEWN:IT&rd=1
    for that price, i wouldnt buy any carved bass here, bad deal for the seller? nope, he had the bass on the corner and couldnt play it. he got €2000 for something unusable for him... see what i mean? c'mon Bruce, go hunt..... :D you might find something...

    NUNO
     
  18. So... how does somebody get interested in collecting ties? And how do you display them?
     
  19. Nuno A.

    Nuno A. Velvet Strings Customer Service

    Jul 9, 2001
    SWITZERLAND
    I started to get interested while watching those videos from the 40's with Nat King Cole Trio, Slim Gaillard and others who were always wearing those loud jazzy ties.
    Those were great times for ties, winter ties, summer ties, tropical,abstract, hand painted, thre was a tie for any ocasion.
    i have 200 ties and i have a special made closet where i can display them, and of course, i wear them at shows.
    In case you want to see some.

    NUNO

    p.s. sorry for going off topic