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Steinberger XL-2 VS. Pre-Ernie(70s) Stingray Long term value opinion

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by FishDub, Mar 16, 2017.


  1. FishDub

    FishDub Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    I own both, love both and both sound phenomenal while recording or live situations. But of course, very different animals. So considering both, who do you think will come in first place in 5, 10, 20 years as far as value and rarity? Why? They both seem to be holding value pretty well lately and actually seem to be on the rise as time goes by, but in small increments. I can't dream of parting with either but damn they are getting harder to find, especially non-modified models.
    So addressing the "mod" point, I am absolutely shocked on what some bassists have done to their basses, particularly the Ray and not so much the Steinie. I have seen added P pickups, after market bridges, body contours added, eq swaps, non-matching necks and bodies, etc., and I am thinking geez what a shame, which then significantly decreases in value. I would love to hear some feedback!
    Thanks
     
  2. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    I don't know the actual relative production numbers, but Steinberger was a far smaller factory and staff, so I'm guessing the Steinberger is more rare. The unique materials, construction, and hardware adds collector value too. The prices for XL generation basses has gone way up recently, and you are beginning to see some restorations. Hang onto the Steinberger! (And dont mod it!)
     
  3. FishDub

    FishDub Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    Yes I will NEVER mod my XL2, but if I ever have money to blow, I may send it to Headlessusa's Jeff Babicz for a few "tweaks."
     
    Kubicki Fan likes this.
  4. portpc

    portpc

    May 31, 2011
    The XL2 all the way, I sold a L2 a few years back for much more than my purchase price in the early 80's.
    I had a lot of inquiries from Asian folks on it and eventually one of them bought it..
     
    FishDub likes this.
  5. Caca de Kick

    Caca de Kick Supporting Member

    Nov 18, 2002
    Seattle / Tacoma
    Didnt you already post this same topic a few months ago?
     
  6. FishDub

    FishDub Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    Yes and no...The other post was more about which one to keep if given a choice and this post I am more relating to the value over long term, etc...Good memory!
     
  7. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    Ed Roman guitars has a some left over NOS parts for some models, insanely overpriced of course. I have an 86' XP-2 that had the rock maple "flying vee" body and CF neck. I have never had to replace a single piece of hardware, except a washer I flat out lost. Even the string pawls are original, which is apparently about the only thing that breaks on these basses. I swapped the maple body out for a home-made one piece mahogany body, but kept all the original parts and body in case I change my mind or want to sell it. All stored in the original "rifle" style case. I did mod the electronics back in the 80's by adding a pickup selector switch and master volume instead of two volumes. This required a small hole in the pickguard for the switch, a mod I now regret! I could probably fill it with gelcoat patch material for a nearly un-detectable repair if that becomes a re-sale issue. I dropped the neck a few years ago and put a nasty chip in it. I was able to repair it almost perfectly using Spectrum Gelcoat Paste, a two-part gelcoat putty available in small quantities in jet black. The original bodies and necks were laid up like boats, with gelcoat sprayed into the polished mold first, and the CF matt and resin laid-up in layers. Any finish dings can be repaired using standard gelcoat techniques, just an FYI!
     
    bassfran and FishDub like this.
  8. mp40smg

    mp40smg

    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.
    No question. Steinberger.
     
    FishDub likes this.
  9. Badwater

    Badwater

    Jan 12, 2017
    For some, guitars and basses are like hot rods of the late 60s early 70s. When those cars became rare only a few would exist that would hold it's value. Then people started modding tuner cars, which was cool in the 90s, and that fad is slowly declining. Nevertheless, modding guitars and basses is relatively steady after all these years.

    Some like to buy high end cars the same as some like high priced fancy basses. Others like to find beaters and spruce them up with aftermarket parts.

    And there are those like us who buy a car or instrument for what it is. After a couple of decades modding instruments with aftermarket pars, buying and making various fx pedals and various amps, I realized sometimes less is more, and instruments have a unique character of their own. And I celebrate that, and use that tone/sound for what it is, and shape that sound with my hands.

    Nevertheless, every musician should go through the process of finding their sound/tone. And it may take learning how all the different fx pedals, types of amps, and types of pickups and preamps affect their sound/tone. And from that, they will know exactly what they want.

    At any rate, I agree it's a shame great vintage gear was modified. But you must understand that back in the 70s and 80s, they were just mass produced consumer instruments, that was part of the tone seeking experience. And the fad was to create their own unique instrument, just like the Hot Rod builders of the 60s and 70s. I've been guilty of modding a 79 Gibson Les Paul Deluxe, and I regret selling it for $350. But that was how things were. We can't change behavior of the past, but we can learn from it, and behave better in the future.
     
    MobileHolmes, ale29 and FishDub like this.
  10. mp40smg

    mp40smg

    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.

    Not sure what this means..

    You buy a guitar to make music with it. It is a tool. You modify that tool to (hopefully) make the job easier or make the end result "better". If you go into it with the focus on what is somebody 20 yrs from now going to think. Or, with the sole thought of "what will this do to the resale" then you have substantially diminished the value/ viability of that tool as a tool.

    To me this would be like buying a "road worn" instrument and then being to afraid to play it in public as it mighty get scratched.. (and NO, I do not understand the road worn thing at all)
     
    FishDub likes this.
  11. FishDub

    FishDub Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    +1...The only people that think "road worn" basses are cool are other bassists..The others that are in the crowd listening and watching are probably thinking, "geez wth? this guy cant even take good care of his instrument";)
     
    markjazzbassist likes this.
  12. JimmyThunder

    JimmyThunder Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2008
    New Hampshire
    That's not entirely true. Some people buy one strictly as a tool. Some people buy a specific model because of how it looks, so, primarily as a fashion accessory. Some people buy them primarily as an investment, such as Gibson "Guitar of the Year" limited editions. A LOT of people buy them with all those factors in mind. You don't see "TalkFramingHammer.com" where hundreds of thousands of registered members discuss the merits of framing hammer models, customization options, hammering techniques.....because a framing hammer is strictly a tool. You never hear "I want a Morganstern brand framing hammer because [a celebrity construction dude] used one when he did his best work".

    And that straight up doesn't make any sense. If I want to try out owning a jazz bass for the first time and I purchase a Squier VM Jazz instead of an American Standard because I know I will lose less on resale if I don't like it....that doesn't diminish the bass as a tool. It plays and sounds exactly the same no matter what thought was in my head when I bought it.
     
    FishDub likes this.
  13. mp40smg

    mp40smg

    Aug 11, 2010
    Worcester, Ma.

    Maybe we just come from different views..
    Growing up in the 70s/80s, Especially Fender..EVERYTHING was a tool and a starting point to modify it to be what you wanted. It was extremely rare to find somebody buying Fenders/ Gibson/ Ibanez/ jacksons or just about anything that would not think twice about changing pick ups. bridges, routing out J's or Ps singles to humbuckers/ soap bars addi in routing out Gibsons to put whammy bars, middle pickups/ etc. And it not until the LATE 80s/90s (and the Japanese started buying them all up) that anybody even cared about ANYTHING made in the 70s..
     
    FishDub likes this.
  14. Gilmourisgod

    Gilmourisgod

    Jun 23, 2014
    Cape Cod MA
    For me, basses are not just tools, more like playable art, I definitely like em' pretty. The visual and tactile experience is all part of it. My tablesaw is a tool, and I have no emotional attachment to it at all. If it got burned up in a fire, I'd be bummed, but without the sense of personal loss I'd feel losing a bass.
     
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  15. DigitalMan

    DigitalMan Owner of seven basses - eligible for 44 TB Clubs Supporting Member

    Nov 30, 2011
    I can just imagine someone on Antique Roadshow saying "Hey, its just a clock. It tells time. End of story."
     
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  16. brianrost

    brianrost Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 26, 2000
    Boston, Taxachusetts
    Another vote for Steinberger. They are already much rarer. My L2 is going with me into the grave.
     
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  17. jdthebassman

    jdthebassman

    Jul 11, 2010
    I have been collecting since I was a teenager to me they all have a personality and sound.as far as value is concerned I don't buy for the short time flip, you have to hold on to them for a while play and love them.
     
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  18. Spidey2112

    Spidey2112

    Aug 3, 2016
    I had an XL-2 once... a guy from Houston bought it off me through a Trading Times ad, that I ran for what seemed like years... I paid $1500 for it, in '86, and sold it for... $950...

    ... yes, that's me in the corner...
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2017
    superdick2112 and FishDub like this.
  19. markjazzbassist

    markjazzbassist Supporting Member

    Apr 19, 2005
    Cleveland, OH
    i would recommend purchasing "the vintage guitar price guide" every few years, it will give you an idea on the market value for them. or you can just go into bookstores or the library and check it out and take a pic with your phone.
     
    FishDub likes this.
  20. FishDub

    FishDub Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    Ouch!