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Should I do up an old Ibanez Jazz?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Disco_Gee, Apr 4, 2005.

Should I do up an old Ibanez Jazz?

Poll closed Apr 11, 2005.
  1. Yes! Do it up!

    100 vote(s)
  2. No, don't bother

    59 vote(s)
  3. What's a jazz bass?

    22 vote(s)
  1. It looks like I'll be getting an old Ibanez Jazz bass for free off a former student (I actually got it for free and gave it to him for free a few years ago - now it looks like coming back). I don't know how old it is, I'm guessing from the 70's. All the parts are orignal still. It's in working condition. The only changes that have been made are to to the finish. It was sanded back and painted a horrible purple colour (i think it was a strange green to begin with).

    So... should I invest in some new pickups/electronics, a new finish, and new bridge and tuners? I thought about maybe even making it fretless (either de-fretting ro buying new neck). I'll be doing all the work myself not paying anyone to do it for me. What do you think?
  2. How well does it play? I ask because I've taken some old beaters, basses that I've acquired because people didn't like them, and I've turned them into great instruments. My favorite is a franken-p/j that I invested about $100.00 into, and it plays and sounds great, I've used it for sessions and engineers love the sound. If it's got a good vibe to it then I say DO IT!!!!!!! Let us know how it turns out.
  3. I think it's definitely got a good vibe to it. I love playing it even though it's not that great in it's present condition. There are some basses that you just pick up and can't help but want to play. For me, this is one of them.
  4. Nazman


    Mar 4, 2005
    Dallas, TX
    I am trying to decide the same thing.I bought a 1979 Ibanez Musician recently..It had wiring problems and is in the shop getting that fixed..I was thinking of redoing the finish as the bass is a bit beat up..But without refinishing it the bass would still play just as well..I cant decide whether to do it or not.I have never tried it and I dont really know how much work it will be..
  5. Dr. PhunkyPants

    Dr. PhunkyPants Guest

    Aug 11, 2002
    Do up some CARROTS!!! A little butter...a little sugar...YUMMM!!!!!
  6. If I were you I would play it for a little while before upgrading, which is something I assume you would have done anyway. If the instrument is going to be free you might consider doing work on it yourself to learn about bass setup and finishing. Also, be very aware of how much you are spending on the instrument, if it's free and you spend close to 500 on pickups hardware and finishing then you could have kept that bass as is and bought a whole nother instrument on the used market that will probably be very good without upgrades.
  7. burk48237

    burk48237 Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2004
    Oak Park, MI
    I had a 70's P/J Lawsuit Ibanez, that I used as a back up for two 70's Jazz's I had. I ended up playing the Ibanez more, it was a great bass!! If I could find another one cheap, in good shape, I'd sure consider it.
  8. Bass Kahuna

    Bass Kahuna

    Dec 3, 2002
    West Lafayette, Indiana
    Luthier, Custom Builder

    I've got a real soft spot for basses that have been hacked up, refinished, parts missing, or broken to the point that no one else really wants them. I love to bring them back to life.

    Especially if the bass feels good to you and you like to play it. The undescribeable connection from your soul through your hands to the bass is either there or it isn't, and this may sound corny to some, but if you feel that connection now, just imagine how much better it will be after you put some sweat equity into it by fixing it up.


    Replace only what NEEDS to be replaced. I was lucky when I completely overhauled my SX fretless (albeit, the original value of the instrument is a completely different subject). Just don't go crazy with mods, otherwise it won't be the bass it started as. If you're looking for a fretless, defret that bass or just buy a fretless.
  10. Hmmm... some good points.

    As far as using the money to buy another bass - I live in Australia and we certainly don't have as big a used bass market that you guys in the US have. I was thinking about spending a maximum of AUD $500 on it, which wouldn't really buy much of a used bass here in Aus.

    I'm still not sure.
  11. Oh man, I'm a sucker for a retro jazz setup...
  12. Minger


    Mar 15, 2004
    Rochester, NY
  13. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    If it feels great and speaks to you, go for it.
  14. No it was more of an Army green almost. And it think it was a matt finish but I'm not entirely sure. Wasn't the best looking colour IMO.
  15. dont bother fixin it, you should just give it to me.....aww jk. I'd say go for it, if its a decent playing bass, you can always make it sound better. maybe go for a set of bartolinis and a bartolini preamp, brass nut, badass II bridge, new set of tuners.............hmm sounds like my bass. what color do you want to paint it? in the next few issues of guitar world they are going through how to paint guitars and get a professional looking finish with spray cans the method they are gonna show is from www.paintyourownguitar.com
  16. Thanks! You may have just saved me from making a "how do I paint my bass and make it look good" thread in the luthiers forum!! :D I was thinking about a set of Batronlini Jazz pickups and a Bart pre... oh man, now I'm starting to GAS for a bass that doesn't even exist... lol