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Rickenbackers Overpriced?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jackajesusfreak, May 4, 2010.

  1. propel


    May 10, 2007
    That's not the situation in Montreal Baird, the only store that carries Rickenbackers is Steve's music and there is a 3 year wait at the moment. I remember when I told my bass-playing friends that I had bought a Rick, they were all amazed. I get the feeling that in the ROC it's a lot easier to get your hands on a Rick than in Quebec. Here the only way to get one is through the used market, that's how I got mine ('74 mapleglo :D). Small price to pay to live in Montreal though :p.

    As for Rickenbackers being overpriced, my personal opinion is that now they are worth what they're supposed to be worth. I feel that in that legendary period of time you often hear about, about ten years ago, when it is said that they sold for the likes of 1250$, is crazy! Had I only been older and capitalized on that.

  2. I'm not saying they are as good. The two I've picked up weren't as nice as my old 4001. Even so, I didn't see their existence cheapening me or my purchase in any way, shape or form.

    I can certainly understand John Halls' aversion to copies...he has to maintain a profit and maintaining his current copyright is paramount to that end. But I'm not sure how the existence of some (or even thousands) of basses that look like Rickenbackers affect the Rickenbacker owners. My only guess (and it's just that, don't get offended as I'm open to correction) is that part of the Rickenbacker cache for the owner is some sort of valuation they place on the bass that theyfeel also applies to them by virtue of ownership. Kinda like a Corvette owner who thinks he's a badass because of the car.

  3. oh banhammer. where art thou when needed??? :spit:
  4. The 2 year wait is a MYTH! You can buy them now online and others have reported seeing them in music stores. There is no cartel - theory here.
  5. Simo98


    Jun 18, 2009
    QLD, Australia
    All these bloody RIC threads are not helping my GAS.

    Sheesh, stop complaining about the prices already. Heck, if I could buy a new Rickenbacker 4003 off the shelf for $1700, id take two, and a 330 just for kicks.
  6. Every bass is overpriced to someone.

    Every bass is worth its price to someone.
  7. Are they overpriced? Maybe.... $2000 for an American made, somewhat hand built instrument seems fair. I can respect those who think they're overpriced.... It's nothing like a REAL handmade instrument.

    Here's the thing- a Ric sounds like a Ric, and nothing else does. Whether you're ok with the 2 year wait, awful customer service, unnecessary truss rod system and finish irregularities or not.... The bottom line is- If you want a Ric- you'll end up deciding you'll deal with it I guess.

    P.S. I have 3. :D
  8. johnk_10

    johnk_10 vintage bass nut Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 16, 2008
    Thousand Oaks, CA
    John K Custom Basses
    my 2 cents...............

    i've been playing bass since '66 and started working in a music store teaching bass, and servicing guitars & amps beginning in 1973, so my outlook is from more than 4 decades of playing them (and every other brand). fender, gibson and rickenbacker were our main guitar and amp lines. i've owned quite a few ricks over the years and curently have two ('91 v63 and a 2009 4003). IMO, they are NOT overpriced at all. to me, a made in USA neck-thru for $2K (or less) is not only a value, but actually a bargain. and every one that i've owned has had excellent quality of workmanship.

    and i know of no other instrument that has a replaceable truss rod system. and i have never had a single problem with any of my rickenbacker necks. every one of them has been arrow straight, and has had low action (not to mention great tone!).
  9. A Fender Jazz deluxe MIA blabla what-have-you that costs 2500 dollars in the US will not cost 3000 Euros in France. It will be more expensive, but stay in the same price range.

    Not so for Rick prices. Taxes, VAT etc are steep, but the dealers increase prices because they know demand for Ricks is much higher than availability. Essentially, they just jack the prices because some Rik fanatics will pay 4000 Euros for a 2500 dollars bass. Which sucks for the rest of the bass players who like Ricks, but not enough to get ripped off.
  10. mm.. the wait def. seems to be them most unreasonable part imo. rickenbacker think they have a very high quality product, and apparently a huge number of people agree and will happily pay their asking price. great. but this 2 year wait is absurd.. if you're so popular that you have a 2 year waiting period then it means either you're one guy in a shed with a day job or you need to hire more staff and a bigger shop :scowl: now i'm no economics major but that seems like fairly poor buisness practice to me.
  11. I've seen Rickenbackers hanging on the wall in stores. You don't HAVE to wait two years.
  12. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis

    I am unbannable. :eyebrow:
  13. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis

    I am unoffendable. :eyebrow:

    FWIW, I don't think owning a 4001 makes me a bass badass. I know I suck, but I suck with style man. ;)
  14. Quadzilla

    Quadzilla Supporting Member

    Arguable as the old 4001's had suspect truss systems. I've personally had issues with one that I had a few years ago that I had to pay a pretty penny to get corrected.
  15. I liked this one! :p :hyper:
  16. Yea..., it's mostly a matter of supply and demand.

    Maybe the thing that erks some folks is how much Rickenbacker increased thier price. It was a substantial jump. If you look at a Gibson Thunderbird bass, they actually came down in price by about about $300.00. The T-bird is also a neck-through instrument, but made much different from a Ric. It's a 9-piece mahogany/walnut laminate, and the wings are V-groved, unlike Ric's, current, two piece laminate, which is simply butt-glued to the wings. The T-buird also has a substantial angled headstock and body. Simply put, there is much more craftsmanship and work that goes into a Gibson Thundebird bass than a Rickenbacker 4003. All one need do is look at the construction.

    Ric gets what it does because of the precieved quality, and of course, demand.

    Both are fine instruments. It'll be interesting to see what they each go for in about five years.
  17. Barkless Dog

    Barkless Dog Barkless to a point

    Jan 19, 2007
    The other thing people need to factor in is resale value. Not many people keep one bass all their life (I have). You might pay more for a Ric, Tbird or USA Fender, but they hold their value much better.

    Buying a used one is even better. They can actually increase in value. I bought a 4003 slightly used, mint condition, for $850 about 4-5 years ago, which back then was the average price then. Now I could flip it for $1200 conservatively.

    Basses like Carvins & Peavys seem like a great value, but when you walk out the door your bass looses 40-60% of its value.

    No matter what brand, buying used, you pay a "real" value.
  18. bobwhite


    Mar 11, 2010
    Not really. US companies getting paid in USD that are now worth less will increase their USD price to get the same value. I would suspect European dealers convert strong Euros to USD to buy for cheap, and US manuf raise their prices at least some to even things out. While a strong Euro should help increase exports from the US, the US manuf getting paid in USD surely will raise the USD export price to account for the fact its USD are worth less.

    Also, I suspect the EEC puts a big tariff on US imports, as I suggested in my original post. Hard to find it on the web, but the EEC has been known to protect its market well--like Europe has done for years with agricultural products, under the guise of "environmental" or "health" issues, but really just protecting its farmers and agribusiness.

    Also, I would go to places like bass emporium and smaller retailers to see if they'd ship to you. I cannot imagine you couldn't get lightly used Rics shipped to Europe unless the EEC has really lost touch with the needs of its serfs, I mean citizens.

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