New Geddy Lee Jazz/Ordered from overseas to the UK

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MatW, Mar 11, 2003.

  1. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    Great news everyone!

    My new Geddy Lee Jazz has arrived at long last and I'm in love. I'd like to share my experience of buying from overseas, especially with the U.K. bassists.

    I've been meaning to get a new bass for ages, but I've been unable to spare the time to travel the country trying out basses, so I decided to buy a Geddy Lee from Germany via an eBay company. I know you should try before you buy, but I'd heard great things from you guys, and I really wanted that retro look with the maple fingerboard, etc.

    I wired the money across and had to wait for that to clear before they'd ship. Frankly I was very nervous, the whole transaction has taken nearly 4 weeks, and I was starting to think that my gamble wouldn't pay off. I finally got an email saying that the money had cleared and that they were shipping the bass. 8 days later and I've got it!

    The bass was well packed and arrived in mint condition and played fairly well right out of the box. I love this bass, I always preferred maple fingerboards so this is a real treat. The neck is really slinky, and the bass is light and fits perfectly on my body. Plugged in it sounds good as is, and harmonics just jump out of this thing. I just love the whole 70's look, the block inlays, the binding on the side of the neck, the Badass and the large writing on the headstock. Hmmm 70's Jazz (drools). :) It's sitting proudly in the corner of my room and I can't stop looking at it.

    Now the gripes. The control knobs are loose and the action is a little high for my liking. I dropped the action and the 'G' saddle is right to the bottom and the action is still too high for my tastes. I like a bit of buzz and rattle in my basses you see. I guess I need to adjust the relief in the neck, but I might let the bass settle for a few days first. Has anyone else had to do this with a new GL Jazz?

    I will be dropping in a j-retro at some point and replacing the pickguard (I fancy a silver one). I'll see how it goes from there because otherwise the bass seems fine.

    So there we are, buying from overseas with eBay. Yeah, it's a gamble, but I'm happy to say that it's worked out okay. I say go for it.

    What do I do with my US Jazz Dlx now? Oh well.

    Best wishes all.

  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well I think you are probably safe buying within the EC - but the problems start when you are importing from a non-EC country like the US - which is what most people do as the cost of living is such that thing there are half the price they are in the UK.

    So anyway - the only reason I can see for buying from another coutry by mail order is if the price is significantly less - so you didn't mention that!

    I mean - I have seen a Geddy Lee Jazz in the Bass Cellar in Denmark Street, London and if I want to try basses like that, get it set up and walk out with it under my arm, there is no problem with shops in London - so how much cheaper was it to buy from Germany than if I went into a shop in London?

    That is the crucial question and the one you haven't mentioned!! ;)
  3. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    Good point. The total price including shipping, bank charges, etc. Wait for it.......


    As a comparison SoundsLive is selling a Marcus Miller Jazz for £675. I was in The Bass Cellar a few weeks back, no Geddy Lee, but they too had a Marcus Miller for £750 (ish).

    I tried to get a Geddy Lee from here, but no luck. I found a shop in Cornwall on the internet that advertised a Geddy Lee. The assistant didn't know who Geddy Lee was. This was a quote from our conversation.

    Me: How much is your Geddy Lee Jazz Bass?
    Him: Giddy Lee?
    Me: No, Geddy Lee.
    Him: Did you say Gemma Lee?
    Me: GEDDY LEE!
    Him: I'll have to call you back.

    When he called back, he said that they didn't even sell the bass. :rolleyes:

    An interesting point, I was expecting to be stung for extra tax (VAT or something), but no? God, I hope there's no tax collecting bass players on this site. :D
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    VAT is already included in EC countries - as I said, if you were importing from the US then you would get stung for VAT - but Germany is OK.

    I don't see why you tried shops in Cornwall - I'm sure that, the Bass Centre could get you a Geddy Lee bass and I'm sure I've seen one in a London shop for £475?? I Could be wrong though...

    The German Thomann cyber shop has similar price :
  5. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    Oh no, don't say that. Why can't I ever get a good deal? For the love of God, why?
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Well I think it was probably a good deal, but if you look around in shops, you can spot good deals; but then I'd always rather look around and try before I buy - as you say, my worry would be that something happened - damege, during shipping, for example and it sounds like you were pretty lucky there?
  7. RealBK


    Feb 8, 2002
    I also Live in THE UK and after Months of searching i bought one from the U.S. (Used) NO!!!! UK shops will stock this bass!!!!!! The total cost Including Import Duty and shipping from the US cost me £490. The bass is very sweet, but i feel the neck just a tad this so i may sell it on.

    Not many shops in Germany have this bass for sale now.
  8. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    That's interesting that you bought yours from the US. I'm glad it worked out okay.

    I was also considering buying a 'Jaco' style fretless direct from Japan, but I was waiting to see how the Germany deal went first.

    I didn't get what you were saying about the GL neck. Please let me know as I'd be very interested to hear your opinion on it.
  9. I've bought several basses from Thomann in Germany. They're very easy to deal with, prices are very good, and the basses are well packaged. The ones I've had have played great straight out of the box!

    I actually sold 2 on ebay, making enough profit to keep the 3rd bass effectively free.

    Not a bad way to get a Spector NS5CR!! Although, I will upgrade the pups to EMGs, so this will cost me maybe a couple of hundred £s all in!
  10. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    That's rubbish - the Bass Cellar in Denmark Street, London had one in the window for ages!!
  11. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Yes - I've looked at their site a few times and they seem to be a pretty professional outfit - very different from buying via eBay!!

    I would never buy a bass without trying first, but I can see this is a pretty good option if you don't have any decent bass shops nearby.

  12. It is a good way of you have a limited choice! I've spoken to Paul in their bass department - very nice guy, with excellent English.

    They can be a good way of getting a bass you've tried - although even same model basses can vary. The Czech Spector I kept (I actually ordered 2, knowing I would keep the best, and sell the other - ironically, I just picked one to sell, they were both really good!) is just as good as the one I alreayd owned - except the pickups, it was a New old stock bass, but adding EMG is no great hardship, and if I ever sell this bass ,I know I can only get more for it than it cost me!
  13. steve_man


    May 15, 2002
    find somebody to give you a good setup!!!

    I remember my Geddy came with really high action. I know what you're talking about with the slight buzz. I got it and I've had several people where ever I go give me complements on how well the bass plays.

    I also had the problem with the loose vol & tone knobs. still haven't sorted that one out. You may find the tuners give you a little hassle but other than that you have yourself a bass that you want to keep!
  14. MatW


    May 10, 2000
    UK, Swindon
    I was prepared to adjust the relief in the neck yesterday evening. I'm replacing the pickguard with a mirrored one, so I took that off to give myself better access to the truss rod. However, I noticed that the truss rod is adjusted with a screwdriver, rather than a hex allen key style tool, which I have with my Am Dlx. The end of the truss rod looks like this (X). Also, even with the pickguard off you don't have great access to it, so I think the neck will have to come off first. I've decided to entrust the work to my friendly neighbourhood guitar repair man. I'm having a j-retro fitted so he can do it all at the same time.

    I've heard that the tuners can be a bit dodgy, but mine seem fine so far. I've also added some Schaller straplocks, which I feel are an absolute must.