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Ric experts-Which one did I used to own?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Whit Townsend, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. Ric experts, I need you help.
    I stupidly sold it and have missed it ever since.
    I would like to replace it but I want to make sure I get the same neck profile. I remember it as slim and fast. I bought it used around 1998. It had very little wear so I'm assuming it was maybe early 90s, but it coulda been older, poss 80s, and just in real good shape.
    It was fireglow w sharkfin inlays and had the horseshoe pickup. No stereo output, so can I assume it was a 4001?
    If I was to order a new 4001, would it be the same, esp the neck profile?
    Also where would be a good place to look for another used one online?
  2. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    4001 always had Rick-O-Sound, as far as I know. (I'm no expert)
  3. Sorry not knowledgeable what is Ric-O-Sound?
  4. BenWhoPlaysBass


    Jun 7, 2013
    Ric-O-Sound is the two output jacks on the bass that give you the option to run both pickups mono or run them stereo into seperate inputs.
  5. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Was there binding on the front of the body? If not, then it could have been a 4001S or 4003S.

    Did it have a shedua/walnut strip of wood down the middle of the neck that went all the way through the body, too? If so, it was a 4001S, if not, it was a 4003S.
  6. smcd


    Jun 28, 2009
    Boston, MA
    Rick-O-Sound is the stereo output, which, as mellowinman said, all 4001's and 4003's have. Horseshoe pickup and no stereo output sounds like an older model 4000, but that bass had dot inlays, so that doesn't make sense.

    Are you sure you're recalling things correctly? Are you sure about the horseshoe pickup?
  7. Hm, well this one only had one output jack. That feature would be ok I guess, but not really necc. More concerned with the neck, heft, balance, and overall feel of the bass being like the one I had.
    What model was mono, fireglow, horseshoe, sharkfins, thin fast neck w lacquered rosewood board? Was hoping someone could narrow it down to a specific model and years of production so I'd know what to search for. I could live with a different color and Ric-O-Sound would be ok too I guess if need be.
  8. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    It may not have actually had a horseshoe pickup (or, maybe it did, knowing that would help in establishing it's age); many people just call the bridge pickup that has a cover on it a "horseshoe" pickup.
  9. I don't remember any binding on the body and can't recall if the neck was bound or not, but I seem to recall not.
    I can't recall about the walnut strip.
    But it def had the horseshoe "looking" rear pickup with the 2 metal wings covering the pickup from each side with a gap in the middle. May not have been the "real" original horseshoe pickup as I understand in later yrs this was a cosmetic feature.
  10. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Was it a real horseshoe pickup or the cover that is found on Rick basses starting around 1968?

    I should mention, the shedua strip started in 1972 and ended with the end of production of 4001 model basses in the early to mid '80s; the 4003 model never had the shedua strip, so as you can see, specific (and accurately described) features help very much in establishing what you really had.
  11. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    There have been "anomalies" ('70 and '80s era) in the past where some basses had this and a mono output only (except for most '60s era basses until ROS became standard on the 4001 model). Do you recall if the inlays went all the way across the fingerboard or did they stop short of the edges and were rounded off on their ends?
  12. smcd


    Jun 28, 2009
    Boston, MA

    No binding, mono, "horseshoe" pickup all points to the Model 4000. Except for the sharkfin inlays. Thing is that the horseshoe pickup was discontinued in the early 70's, and it seems you think your bass was a lot younger than that.
  13. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    Given how long ago you got/had the bass it most likely was a real horseshoe pickup, then. :cool: Going by what you have described so far, you most likely had a 4001 from the mid '60s; we still need to sort out the inlays with the mono output!
  14. msb


    Jul 3, 2002
    Halifax,N,S. Canada
    Did it have two pickups ?
  15. Yes it was a 2 pickup bass.
    I'm pretty sure the bass was no older than 80s, so I'm guessing the "horseshoe" was just a cosmetic cover. I don't remember a walnut strip in the neck, so I'm pretty sure it didn't have one.
    So there were no 4001s made past the mid 80s?
    I'm positive it was no 60s or even 70s bass, way too new looking and clean.
    If so then this one must have been a mono model 4003 right?
    I'm pretty sure there was no body binding, and almost as sure the neck was unbound, but it did have the sharkfins. Cant remember the exact inlay details other than they were triangular.
    The neck was not super thin or narrow, but thinner than most Fenders front to back. The width I recall as being maybe a little wider than a Jazz, maybe approaching a P width, but with a flatter fretboard profile than any Fender.

    I guess I need to go play some newer(90s to present) Rics and pick one that feels like that one did, but where do I go from North AL? Nashville? Atlanta?
  16. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    The HS PU was supplanted by the hi-gain PU sometime in '68-'69.

    Age has not necessarily been established as the OP says he bought the bass used, and he doesn't seem certain as to how old it really was when he got it, he is just guessing, here.
  17. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    If it were not for the FW inlays it could have been a 4001V63; do you remember whether the neck PU was a toaster (two black strips running parallel to the width of the chrome cover) or a hi-gain (black top with "mushroom" dot pole pieces on the top of it)?
  18. smcd


    Jun 28, 2009
    Boston, MA
    He's gotta be off on some of his recollections. I am under the impression that the 4003 came standard with Rick-o-Sound jacks.
  19. jgroh

    jgroh Supporting Member

    Sep 14, 2007
    As far as the neck goes...the newer Rics from the last 5+ years have nice and slim necks. My 2009 is great. I had a 1988 4003 that had a thick neck with no taper. My 09 is much more like a Jazz bass neck...not quite as slim, but really nice.
  20. Jeff Scott

    Jeff Scott Rickenbacker guru.......... Supporting Member

    I thought he said it did not have ROS?

    But yes. given all the varying features throughout the history of Rick basses, and that some interesting variations cropped up over the years, details are important in determining what it actually was.

    Are we playing 21 Questions, here? :D