Mystery Early 1960s German 3/4

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by Steve Swan, Apr 30, 2019.

  1. Steve Swan

    Steve Swan

    Oct 12, 2004
    Burlingame, California
    Retailer: Shen, Sun, older European
    Going back about 10-12 years ago, I had two basses pass through the shop from the same maker. One had been refinished brown and the other had its original vibrant wine red spirit varnish finish, a little brighter than the bass shown here. The maker and his wife made a good many of these instruments during the late 1950s through the 1960s. They were immigrants from Eastern Germany and settled in Western Germany. He was one of the first to proudly use a spray gun to varnish his instruments, much to the annoyance of the more traditional craftspeople in the area. There was even a nice magazine feature article on him done during the 1960s that featured his new efficient manner of applying varnish. He labeled some of his basses, but most were anonymous inside. The odd tuning machines shown in the photos were grafted onto the existing halfplates in the early 1980s. The one label inside is "Handarbeit aus Mittenwald Made in Germany". The maker's name should be on the tip of my tongue, but that might be the part that the cat got. Does this bass look at all familiar, or does the brief outline of what I remember? I would appreciate a good memory jog. Thank you in advance !! IMG_6949.jpg

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    Reiska likes this.
  2. jlmorgan84


    Feb 16, 2014
    Columbia, SC
    I own a bass that looks just like the one in your photos, other than the aftermarket tuners. It has the same "Handarbeit aus Mittenwald Made in Germany" label with a date of 1961. I was told it was most likely made in the workshop of Benedikt Lang.
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2019
  3. Eric Swanson

    Eric Swanson

    Oct 8, 2007
    Boston, MA
    Did you ask Ken Smith? He may have something helpful to add...
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  4. Steve Swan

    Steve Swan

    Oct 12, 2004
    Burlingame, California
    Retailer: Shen, Sun, older European
    I don't like to do that. It keeps me from grinding my teeth or getting dyspepsia.
    salcott and eh_train like this.