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Real Ric 4001 or fakenbacker?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mind Eroded, Mar 11, 2009.


  1. I am interested in buying a beat up Ric for a custom project. I stumbled across one but I am feeling fishy about it. The guy states it is a 70's 4001. He claims:
    "I don't know the year (the jackplate with the serial number was removed before I got it)"

    Further, he states, "When I got the bass, it had seen better days. It had spent the 80's bouncing around in every punk band in Arkansas, and had some (primarily) cosmetic damage. The neck is straight and thru-the-body. Body and neck are both bound. All parts are original save the tuners, the pickguard, and the bridge (the original was wood)
    At some point someone ripped out the neck pickup (and corresponding electronics) and put on new tuners. I refinished the wood, cut a new pickguard, and put on new bridge (the original was wood)... essentially everything I was comfortable doing without professional knowledge/help."

    The only reason I am considering this bass is because the price he is offering it at is pretty low..

    Here are some pics:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/paulandashlee/sets/72157614991022859/show/

    any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. 0175westwood29

    0175westwood29

    Sep 16, 2007
    the inlays look a bit fishy, but im no rick expert.

    heres a pic of my 4001 1977 rick
    Front_Full.

    why they take the plate of? does it only have 1 jack now?
     
  3. 18eranaRic

    18eranaRic Banned

    Mar 7, 2009
    Malibu, USA
    In my opinion it's real, and actually kinda cool. maybe early 80s having maple headstock wings...so don't get over charged thinking it's too vintage. Hoping there's a rout under that guard for a neck pick-up?
     
  4. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    Ohio
    Looks like it could be an early '74.

    Does it have red side dot markers by any chance?

    How many truss rods does it have, and are the adjustment nuts in good shape or angled down toward the headstock?
     
  5. Mr. Mig

    Mr. Mig

    Sep 7, 2008
    Same here. It looks ok to me. The wear gives it a vintage look.
     
  6. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    Ohio
    It has a "plexi" truss rod cover. They were phased out in early '74 I think.
     
  7. mat666

    mat666

    Apr 3, 2007
    montreal
    I would suggest you call rickenbacker and ask them help directly
     
  8. It's not like any 4001 I've ever seen. I had a 1973-74 Ric and it didn't look anything like this one. The bridge looks odd as well.
     
  9. 18eranaRic

    18eranaRic Banned

    Mar 7, 2009
    Malibu, USA
    Is the entire tailpiece replaced, or just the actual bridge and "wood" saddles, like the guy said? Because, yea, the entire tailpiece looks weird but I thought you meant the entire bridge was replaced (including the tailpiece).
     
  10. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    Cincinnati
    Only one pup and two knobs? Did they do that with the 4001?
     
  11. I've never seen a Ric bridge with a split in the middle like that one has.

    There was a 4000 that had dot inlays and only one pickup like this one has, but it didn't have binding. I'm inclined to say fake.
     
  12. u6657

    u6657

    Feb 23, 2009
    Seeing the age it could be a copy by Electra, a Japan Co that made copies of Gibson, Fender and Ricks. They no longer are in business
     
  13. woffle

    woffle

    Mar 26, 2008
    I'd say fake,but if it plays well and its cheep and your using it for a project go for it.
    Check truss rods,ricks have two,don't know of any other with more than one.
    Woffle
     
  14. mat666

    mat666

    Apr 3, 2007
    montreal
    I would suggest also to go to a luthier that you thrust and ask him what he thinks - it's easy to copy a rick but you may get a good copy depending on woods used - for what I see in the pics it looks like a real beat up rick that needs a fountain of youth that's it.
     
  15. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    Ohio
    "I've never seen a Ric bridge with a split in the middle like that one has."

    All the early Rick bass bridges had this "space" Even the re-issued V63 and C64. ( Take a look at Chris Squires Rick).

    Early '74 I'd say.
     
  16. Tony In Philly

    Tony In Philly Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Filthydelphia, USA
    That's what stood out with me too. I don't know of any 4000's without dot inlays, but possibly there some in the mid 70's maybe? I would post these on the Ric forum and get their take. They'll know right away.
     
  17. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    Ohio
    The pickguard is not original. Someone probably replaced the neck pickup and later added the 4000ish looking pickguard to hide the hack job.
     
  18. 18eranaRic

    18eranaRic Banned

    Mar 7, 2009
    Malibu, USA
    He says in the original post, "At some point someone ripped out the neck pickup...and cut a new guard".

    Not sure what the situation on the jack plate is, but a true 4001 would have had a stereo and mono at some point. Thought I saw one of the copies that missed this and just stuck a mono in there.

    Better pictures are need of the inlays too, actually better pictures of everything.
     
  19. lowendblues

    lowendblues Supporting Member

    Oct 8, 2004
    Ohio
    A true Rickenbacker 4001 will have dual truss rods.
     
  20. thanks for all the input from everyone. I think i will pass on this.
     

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