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Should I get this 1972 Aria Bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by said1296, Jul 14, 2014.

  1. said1296


    Jul 14, 2014
    Hey guys,

    I found an Aria 1972 selling for 100 dollars. The guy says the pickups need soldering, that it has a crack in the body and is missing some screws. He says he bought it to fix it but doesn't have the time anymore so he's selling it.

    Here are some pictures: http://imgur.com/a/iCtc4#0

    I want to know if it's worth way more than 100 or if it's garbage. If it's not worth that much I would rather buy something more expensive but in better shape.

  2. Derrida423


    Mar 30, 2011
    Las Vegas NV
    I'd buy it as a project bass. Are you planning on putting some money into it? If so, this could be a fun little project. If you end up passing on it pm me and let me know where it is for sale and I'll pick it up for sure.
  3. said1296


    Jul 14, 2014
    Yeah, if I buy it it would be because I'm broke and I can't afford a new one :p But I would be investing in it in the future.

    I play mostly the guitar, and I've been making music on the box for a while but I'm not a fan of synth basses. Do you think I could make this sound decent? For recording purposes?

  4. Crater


    Oct 12, 2011
    Dallas, TX area
    The earlier Arias are not the same quality as the later late 70's - mid 80's ones. It's obviously been de-finished and "modded" - those may not even be the original pickups. Note the filled in holes where a previous pickguard was screwed down.
    Also, it appears from your pictures that is has a mahogany neck instead of the much more common maple neck. Mahogany isn't a stiff as maple, so they're more prone to warping. Nothing else is salvageable if the neck isn't straight.

    If you're looking for a cheap bass to play, keep looking. You could get a modern Squier P-bass for the same $100 that would work much better for you. Only buy this if you're willing to put in some significant time and money getting it fixed up. It's not worth "way more" than a hundred dollars, it's worth much less in my opinion, I'd only be willing to pay about $50 for it in that condition, if that.

    The collectible and valuable Aria basses are the mid-80's with standard scale and set-neck construction.
  5. said1296


    Jul 14, 2014
    So, if I manage to fix it would it be any good? Or just... meh?
  6. bassbenj


    Aug 11, 2009
    It might be a decent project bass just for historical fun, but I wouldn't get it hoping for it to be my only recording bass. First off I think the price it too high. About half that $100 would have me interested. And the there is good reason. I'd be VERY suspicious of "pickups need soldering". If that's true, it's an easy fix. If it's a lie and wires are broken in pickups then it's an expensive rewind and bass isn't worth it. Body is plywood and you say it's cracked somewhere. Now that kind of thing can be fixed with glue and clamps but again unless you want that old vintage mojo, why bother?

    Just look at the basses here, in particular the SX P-bass. Brand new. Alder wood. decent pickups. Usable hardware (if not exactly the best). Usually these are totally decent with just new strings and maybe some shielding.

    As a guitarist you may even find the short scale basses of interest. I used to play one and they can work well.


    And you can probably do better rooting around local music stores for a used bass that totally works off the wall.
  7. OldDirtyBassist


    Mar 13, 2014
    That bass isn't worth $100. I'm not sure if it's even fit for a beginner.
  8. I would have offered him $80 and have bought it 5 minutes ago....
  9. said1296


    Jul 14, 2014
    I guess I'm buying it. Worst case scenario I have a cool vintage bass as decoration.

    Thanks guys.
  10. OldDirtyBassist


    Mar 13, 2014
    My first bass was an Aria Mosrite copy, but it was from a later generation and made with better materials. So I do have some experience with these basses. You could probably find a pretty good Peavey with that $100. instead.
  11. I don't know how handy you are mate, but that li'l fella will need a fair bit of work. Not saying it's a write-off, but it WILL be a labour of love. To top it off, the "crack" in the body, it may kill the tone if it's severe. I can't tell from the pics.

    If you want a starter bass, you can get a Squier Affinity for around $100. Nothing spectacular but it'll do what you want it to.

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