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Origin of my Ernie Ball Earthwood acoustic bass guitar

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by SuperSloMo, Jan 3, 2017.


  1. SuperSloMo

    SuperSloMo

    Mar 3, 2013
    I bought what I thought was an Ernie Ball Earthwood acoustic bass guitar about 40 years ago. That's what the tag on it in the music store said. Now I'm not so sure.

    According to this <Earthwood | Earthwood Fan> it has right size and shape and is made out of the right woods with the right kind of tuners. But it doesn't have a sticker inside it, it just has the number 543 stamped where the sticker would have been, and also not "stamped on the assembly that houses the neck bolts inside the body" as it says it would be here <Ernie Ball Earthwood>.

    The pictures of Earthwood basses that I have seen on the internet have a big capital E logo on the headstock, but mine just has a wooden oval made out of the same kind of wood as the pick guards (rosewood, apparently).

    Anyway, I really like this bass, and I'd like to know more about its origins. I'd also like to be sure that it really is an Earthwood bass and not some kind of knockoff or something. Any suggestions about where to look or who to talk to for more information about Earthwood basses?
    Thanks,
    Mike
     
  2. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Some pictures might help. I'll see if I can find any of my saved Earthwood links. Sounds like yours might be a prototype or a handmade copy. If it has the right tuners, though - I've never seen those "wavy" tuners on anything else, that makes me think it's legit. Maybe it was refinished and the sticker and logo destroyed?
     
  3. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Thanks for that Earthwood Fan link - that has the neck adjustment description - first time I've ever seen that, and I really need to lower my action! Just ordered the required 5/64" long arm allen wrench. :thumbsup:
     
  4. Brian Richie absolutely killed with one of these when I saw the Femmes at Cantrell's touring their 1st album.
     
  5. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    The gallery page on that site (The Earthwood Owners’ Registry | Earthwood Fan) has these pics of one that matches your description, is this yours? If so, they're trying to figure out who bought it. :)
    695-2.
    695.
    Their comment on it:

    # 695 I think this is the ZZ Top Bass that brought $7,800 on Ebay.

    It Re-sold for about $3,500, to whom ??. Sterling Ball said that “only 552 made. There were also many variations to the
    Earthwood. This one has a string through bridge and no “E” emblem on the headstock. He says he thinks it was a “second” made of leftover pieces. Cream City/Warpdrive Music, outside Milwaukee Wisconsin 1-800-800-0087 had this bass for sale for $3,600. Excellent condition and great pictures. Sold to whom?​
     
  6. SuperSloMo

    SuperSloMo

    Mar 3, 2013
    These are pictures of my Earthwood bass. It's not in as good condition. The body has a lot of small blemishes in the finish, and there are three or four that go down into the wood. I had a cello peg installed in it years ago to make it easier to play in tight quarters. I also had a metal tailpiece and some extra internal bracing (similar to "JLD Bridge Doctor") installed to keep the strings from pulling the bridge up and bowing the area behind the bridge. And I had the bridge altered to improve the intonation. I notice that the bass in the pictures up above doesn't have an E logo on the headstock either. I wonder what the reason for that was.
     

    Attached Files:

    el_Bajo_Verde and irjason like this.
  7. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    One guess was that it was a factory second, or put together from leftovers after the end of one of the runs, maybe yours is similar? Though the numbers aren't that close.