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Tobias basses, overall quality

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Niskamies, Nov 10, 2004.


  1. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    A friend of mine is selling his Tobias 5-string classic. Serial number is 794, so it is a pre-Gibson bass. The asking price here in Finland is 3000 euros, which is a too much for me. So I am looking for a Tobias 5- or 6-string bass.

    Pre-Gibson basses are said to be good, and the one I have tested was magnificient. How about the Gibson era Tobias basses? This one looks nice, and the price is good for me.http://www.bassnw.com/Used Basses/tobias_basic_6_string_bass_natural_ash.htm

    Is that good, or should I maybe invest on this one?
    http://www.bassnw.com/Used Basses/tobias_classic_5_1340.htm

    What are the main differences between the Classic and Basic basses. The sound is what I'm interested about. And are the Gibson era Tobias basses even nearly as good as the Pre-Gibson basses?
     
  2. rusty

    rusty

    Mar 29, 2004
    Singapore
    If I'm not mistaken, there are some Tobiases that were still built by Micheal and his crew for a short time after the company was sold to gibson. You could shoot him an email with the serial # of the basses and check with him about that.

    I'd go with the tobias with the koa/wenge/alder body and rosewood fingerboard config - 'cos it's got most of my favourite woods in it! :)

    edit: I found out that the last bass made by Micheal and his crew is #2044 - so yup! The koa/wenge/alder one was made by them!
     
  3. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
    Classic has wood truss cover and control cavity cover and 3 piece body wings. If the serial number is correct and the condition is truly mint then that's probably an ok price as I'm sure there is a bit of a premium being paid for rarity in your area.

    The basses made by him and his crew were outstanding and worth paying a premium for.

    Best of luck.
     
  4. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    I sent an email to Mike Tobias. It is a Basic, not a Classic. And the serial number is 974. It is an excellent bass, and has recorded over 2000 songs here in Finland. There is no chance here to test a Gibson era Tobias, so I have to trust you folks there;)

    And here is the bass
     
  5. get the koa/wenge/alder 5. I bet that has a really distinct voice.
     
  6. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
    The Gibson era basses (post 2044) were not made by the California crew and were much more hit and miss with quality.

    You may get a great one and you may get one with problems.
    Pricewise the Gibson era basses generally bring from approx. $1,400.00 to $2,000.00 depending on whether Basic, Classic or Signature.

    I would say the Gibson era basses are fine if you factor in the cost of a possible replane/refret into the purchase.

    Good luck.
     
  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I have a pre_Gibson Classic 5-string for sale in England - why not hop over to London and have a look!!??

    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=147803

    The Classic has laminated top and matching,wooden control cavity and trussrod covers.
     
  8. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    Don't have that sums of money :crying: Thats about 3300 US, and I am not willing to spend that much on a bass.
     
  9. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    It might be negotiable......?
     
  10. hands5

    hands5

    Jan 15, 2003
    good 'ol USA/Tampa fla.
    none
    If he kind find one ! :eek:
     
  11. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    Btw, do the Tobias' have gloss or satin finish, or does it depend on the bass?
     
  12. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
    Original series was a polyester gloss on basic and classic with an oil finish on the signature. I can't speak for the Gibson era.
    I believe that the polyester was an option later on.
     
  13. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    Replane?
     
  14. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
  15. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
    Replaning the fingerboard is usually part of a quality refret job.
     
  16. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
  17. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
    I've already mailed them and very close to ordering it. But I will think about if for a couple of days.

    I hope its a good one insted of piece of junk. Atleast they said it is a good one.
     
  18. Bassart1

    Bassart1 Guest

    Jun 26, 2003
    They are honest there at BassNW, and odd's are if it was a bad one they would not have taken it in. Enjoy.
     
  19. Niskamies

    Niskamies

    Jan 13, 2004
  20. andysvec

    andysvec Supporting Member

    Aug 15, 2004
    Guam
    I like the the tobias #717 fretless on bassnw site, been thinking about picking that one up for a while (great guys to deal with by the way).

    Here's a pic of mine, #793 originally built for Ron Foos of Paul Revere and the Raiders (hence the "R F" inlay if you can see it on the fingerboard). Incredible sounding bass, it has early '90s Sadowsky electronics/preamp in it and signed by roger himself inside the back of the control cavity cover.

    [​IMG]