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love of Ampeg and other Scroll Basses, Part 2

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by smperry, Jan 9, 2014.


  1. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    So anyone have any leads on where I might find a bridge cover for #19:

    IMG_8736.JPG
    She feels nekkid and won't go out in public without one. ;)
     
    Bobo likes this.
  2. bluesblaster

    bluesblaster

    Jan 2, 2008
    Had an extra a few years back, sold it to Rich who hangs out here, he had a similar need at the time
     
    bholder likes this.
  3. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
    I’d start by asking Mr. Bruce Johnson. If he doesn’t have one, try Gregg Hopkins at Vintage-Amp Restoration 2017
     
    bholder likes this.
  4. bluesblaster

    bluesblaster

    Jan 2, 2008
    We had a big storm a couple years ago that put a branch across the power lines in back of our house, when the power came back on it burst into flames and out went the power again, crew came in and cut it down. Good thing the neighbor and I had been standing in the yard and saw what happened.
     
    Bobo likes this.
  5. bluesblaster

    bluesblaster

    Jan 2, 2008
    Looks like you still have the bridge cover screws so at least your half way there, finding a cover and matching screws would be a tall order I'm afraid. Whats the old saying "rare as hens teeth"
     
    Bobo likes this.
  6. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
    the hardware store sells aluminum screws with mini mushroom caps that are for exterior storm doors to hold the screens:glass panes in place. there is one size that has the same thread as the ampeg cover screws (i know this cuz when we got robbed, they stole my little wooden box that had tie bars that belonged to my dad and grampa and had my bridge plate screws in it) they work!
     
    bholder likes this.
  7. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
    Hi Bruce, just checking in to see how you’re doing today. Are any of these new fires that popped up affecting you in Fillmore? Did your power ever come back on today? Hoping for the best for you all out there. Take good care, Bobo
     
  8. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    Hi Bobo and all of you; I appreciate all of your good thoughts. The power came back on about 4:30 this afternoon, and is still on now. It was off for about 38 hours. I spent the afternoon at a Dr. appointment so, by the time I got back and rolled up all the cords running to generators and batteries, it was time to close the building down for the evening. By City rule. :banghead: Another non-productive day. But this Santa Ana storm appears to have passed, and if the power stays on, hopefully Friday and Saturday will be good work days.

    No signs of any fires here around Fillmore. The Simi Vally fire, which was on all the news, is about 20 miles away. The "historic-level" windstorm wasn't much of anything here. We're all safe and eager to get back to work.
     
  9. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    Hello Bholder!

    The other guys have pretty much answered you already. The AMB-1/AMUB-1 bridge cover is very rare, and there's little chance of you ever finding one for sale. About half of the AMB-1's and AMUB-1's still around today are missing them. There really aren't any "parts" Ampegs or junk boxes around anymore.

    About ten years ago, there was a guy who found six (and only six) bare unfinished covers in the junk recovered from a building that Ampeg had been in. He had those covers plated and sold them off at real high prices over a couple years' time. But they are gone and there's no more. That whole story has been covered way back in this thread.

    And yes, I've looked at trying to make some replicas. But it's a 3-D stamped part, and the tooling would be way too expensive.

    I have made up replicas of the AEB-1/AUB-1 bridge cover, which is a much simpler part. I've also made replicas of the special thumbscrews. I still have some of them in stock. They are 6-32 thread, but the heads are a little different size and shape from the the ones you can get these days in the hardware store. Who knows where Ampeg got them. A lot of the hardware they used in their amps came from the radio/TV industry.
     
    Bobo and bholder like this.
  10. Ed Bloom

    Ed Bloom

    Oct 24, 2017
    Yokota AB, Japan
    Bruce,

    I've sort of been living and following this through Bobo. I echo all his thoughts as wishes. I've been through a few typhoons out here, but what you are going through is much worse as what I've been through has a four or five day tracking period, a few days of very heavy rain and flooding, with one day or night of the rain combined with intense wind. Then, it is over and there might be a day or two of cleanup and damage repair. You have no solid idea of when or what the end of this will be and that has to be mentally exhausting, if not more. I admire your attempt at work arounds to allow you to keep plugging away. Hopefully, all the positive thoughts flowing your way are of some solace and support. Stay safe and healthy.

    Best,

    Ed
     
    Bobo likes this.
  11. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
    Well said, Ed. The fires in the north are starting to be controlled, and extended family members are okay snd returning to their homes. These fires in the south are still breaking out and spreading. Hopefully these too will begin to be contained. We had 60 mph gusts last night, heavy rain, lots of folks without power today. 74 degrees last night at midnight, and dropping into the 20’s tonight. One thing that has remained constant throughout this cycle of bizarre weather on both coasts is Bruce’s passion for his basses. We all appreciate you, Bruce. The back story of #016’s creation makes her all the more precious to me, as I’m certain all the other Scroll Tops in the queue mean to their parents. Thanks seems like a word that doesn’t quite cover how we feel about your commitment and passion for your calling. -Bobo
     
    Ed Bloom likes this.
  12. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Yeah, I figured it would be next to impossible. There was one on Reverb just as I bought the bass, but it vanished before I could snag it, have never seen another. I'm half wondering if an Eastwood bridge cover might fit, but those honestly look more like an early P bass cover than the proper Ampeg shape:
    [​IMG]
    Still might be better than nekkid though. :)

    Edit: Email sent to Eastwood to find out. :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2019
    Bobo likes this.
  13. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
    True. I have to believe there is one out there in somebody’s closet that will eventually see the light of day. The one in the photo doesn’t look too bad. It will help preserve her modesty.
     
  14. jumbodbassman

    jumbodbassman Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2009
    Stuck in traffic -NY & CT
    Born Again Tubey
    the cover seems more like a gibson cover than a fender.. needs to be open back. you might look in that direction
     
    Bobo likes this.
  15. bluesblaster

    bluesblaster

    Jan 2, 2008
    The only other thing that I thought of regarding your bridge cover conundrum might be an old fender jazz bass cover from the 70's if you can find one, I believe they are similar in size the only difference being is it will have the Fender logo "F" stamped on the front instead of the Ampeg "a". Screw holes probably wont match up but you could change that if it fits over the bridge.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2019
    Bobo likes this.
  16. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    Vestal, NY
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    I just ordered a "no logo" Jazz bass bridge cover, we'll see. And Mike Robinson at Eastwood confirms what I suspected: they've no clue whether it would fit, and don't sell parts separately. Pointed me to allparts actually.
     
    Bobo likes this.
  17. bluesblaster

    bluesblaster

    Jan 2, 2008
    Cool, let us know how it works out. Could be an option for owners of older AMB-1 scroll heads
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2019
    Bobo likes this.
  18. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    A long time ago, I tried looking for any other commonly available bridge cover that would reasonably fit on an AMB-1, and I couldn't find one. I don't remember specifically why the Jazz cover wouldn't fit, but I think the Ampeg bridge base plate was too wide at the back end, or something. But, give this aftermarket cover a try, and let us know if it does fit.

    Also, the two thumbscrews for the bridge cover thread into the pickguard, not the wood of the body. There's a small steel PEM-style threaded insert glued into a small counterbore on the back side of the pickguard. Be careful threading in those thumbscrews. If you get it cross threaded and twist too hard, you can break the insert loose. Then it's spinning inside and you can't get the instrument apart. You can't remove the pickguard because you can't get to the bridge screws, because the bridge cover is over it, and the thumbscrew inserts are spinning in place. I remember having that happen once, an uncomfortable situation.

    I haven't been able to find the exact inserts to use as replacements, so I've machined up new ones from scratch when I've needed them. I made the flange bigger and epoxied them in to make them stronger. Not a shining moment in Ampeg's engineering.
     
    Ed Bloom, bholder and Bobo like this.
  19. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Commercial User

    Feb 4, 2011
    Fillmore, CA
    Professional Luthier
    You may have noticed that I pasted my recent updates about my whole situation at the shop over onto the Secret Underground Lab thread. That's really where we should talk about all that. Let's keep this thread all about Scroll Basses!

    But: This week's been quiet and peaceful so far. We have beautiful weather and electricity. Major steps forward have happened in the sale of the building. People are leaving me alone. It looks like I'm actually going to get to spend all afternoon working on......Scroll Basses!!!
     
    dloase, nouroog, Bobo and 6 others like this.
  20. Bobo

    Bobo

    Apr 11, 2017
    CT
     

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