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Rickenbacker Neck disaster

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by flashgod, Apr 9, 2015.

  1. Hello guys,

    yesterday I cleaned my Rick to get rid of the fingerprints and dirt spots. Nice job you should certainly do from time to time. I went to the back of the neck to get rid of the dirt, covered on the surface. With my cleaning cloth I was rubbing down the dirt and was surprised, that there was plenty of impurities on the surface of the neck. After some minutes I began to get nervous, because I could not believe the amount of dirt, I was more or less scratching of the neck. So I took a look closer and realized, what happened to my rick:


    And now comes the point. How can it be, that a high price bass, made by one of the famous guitar builder in the world has such a bad gloss surface condition. I know people, who are ripping down the gloss with sharp knifes. But here the gloss was removed by bares hands with a cleaning cloth by accident.

    Check out the pic and tell me, if I am a stupid, who has ruined the bass by intent. Maybe there are others, how have made the same experience. If not, this is a warning...

    Last edited: Apr 9, 2015
  2. I had this happen on a 1997 4003 in fireglo, even the body finish got so soft you could press a finger nail hard into it and leave a mark. I got mine used for $1200 and promptly sold it for that to a guy who stripped it and oil finished it. Is the body finish okay?
  3. the body finish is ok, only problems with the neck finish. In the past I also had the feeling, that the finish on the neck is too sticky after playing for a while. Compared with my Stingray, which as a roasted neck in a superb gloss finish, the quality of the Rickenbacker paint job is a joke. I now thinking about to sell this bass and get a nice walnut rick with a satin finish.
  4. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    I think a lot of Ric QC slipped during the rush to fill backlogged orders over the past 10 years. They switched from traditional poly finishes to a U.V. activated clearcoat a while back, what year is your bass? The clearcoat obviously didn't adhere well to the color coats. Ric finish warranty starts on date of manufacture, not date of sale, so a lot of people with defective finish basses found out the hard way that the finish warranty expired before they even owned the bass. By all accounts the 4003w is a lovely bass, but they haven't been around long enough to say much about the durability of the finish.
  5. joel406


    Dec 27, 2013
    I had a 78 Ric that the whole finish on the neck literally flaked off within 2 years of owning it. And yes I bought it new. Rics look cool and sound great (sometimes) but I'll never own another one because of the crap workmanship.
    TJH3113 likes this.
  6. I have to check the serial number on the rick homepage, but I think it is build between 2008/2009.
    To me the lack of quality is really a shock, because I absolutely love that bass for its look, play-ability and sound.
  7. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    I never had any finish problems with my 79' Jetglo, so it's obviously hit or miss. Most Rics are well made and well finished, but if you get a lemon, your screwed. Their customer service is legendary for it's indifference. As long as the demand exceeds supply, they seem to feel it's safe to ignore QC problems. In simple economic terms, they are right about that, but it's a short sighted business strategy.
    blindrabbit likes this.
  8. I personal dont count on the customer service of Rickenbacker. Is there any chance to fix the problem by myself, means, sending the bass to a next door guitar builder/shop to get a paint job on the neck?
    Did anyone made experience on that?
  9. Rimbaud88


    Sep 3, 2014
    You are a lucky man, soon you will have your own vintage Bass without buying it pre-scratched from a shop.
  10. Never wash your bass, it takes away the funk.
    There is a Rickenbacker fourm, they may be helpfull to you in troubleshooting this issue.
    nightwulf, beatlebass64 and flashgod like this.
  11. Rio Haride

    Rio Haride

    Mar 13, 2015
    Because Rickenbacker aren't designed to be a working musicians class.

    I mean, look at many professional Rick players. Many of them don't play it very often, cause it's so fragile that it's just better to hang it on your closet.

    So, just life with it.
    Fat Steve likes this.
  12. some people pay a fortune for that, I have it for free. If you like a vintage rick too, just send it to me, I can help.
    bassie12 likes this.
  13. I never was able to play funky on my rick, know I know why. thanx alot.
    basschanges likes this.
  14. Is it just me, or does that finish look REALLY rough? Orange peel, uneven coats,... there's even some overspray on the fretboard. If it came from the factory like that, I would've been ashamed. If bought 2ndhand, maybe someone did a (partial) refin?
    SBsoundguy and carsbybigd like this.
  15. thats why I´m so pissed off. No second hand, directly bought from a dealer. thanks for pointing out the oversprayed fretboard. I didnt recognize that before :crying:
  16. Gilmourisgod


    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    You could have it refinished, but doing the U.V. Catalyzed finish takes special equipment. I don't know if traditional laquer will bond to it. The Rickresource forum is probably your best bet, though many on there refuse to admit that Ric has QC problems. It's a bit like contacting the Republican or Democratic National Committee with unflattering reports about a candidate, they really don't want to hear about it. On the plus side, Ric is their only obsession, so you may get some non partisan responses. There is a guy named Aceonbass who posts on TB and RRF who mentioned finish problems in his posts. He will probably have some sound advice. Try PM'ing him through TB or RRF.
    SBsoundguy, blindrabbit and flashgod like this.
  17. lfmn16

    lfmn16 SUSPENDED Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    I'm sorry, but this is just totally wrong. I'm no Ric apologist, and I would never say they don't have issues, but to say that people that own them don't play them often because they are so fragile is just silly.
    rekesbass, PDX Rich, Spectrum and 5 others like this.
  18. bholder

    bholder Affable Sociopath Supporting Member

    Sep 2, 2001
    central NY state
    Received a gift from Sire* (see sig)
    Surprised Rickenbacker doesn't tout this as an auto-relic'ing "feechur" rather than a quality control problem. :( Hasn't happened to any of mine.
    spiritbass likes this.
  19. fretno

    fretno Supporting Member

    May 10, 2009
    Los Angeles
    I can understand the feelings but don't let that ruin your day , rock that thing so damn hard all of the finish fly right off !
  20. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I grow organic carrots and they are not for sale

    What did you clean it with? Why did you let it get that dirty?

    Try washing your hands before playing it, and try protecting the finish with a wax.

    I have owned over 20 Rickenbackers. I never had a finish problem with neck finish. I had a few with belt buckle rash, and one with finish checking.

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