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Trading an Ovation Magnum for a Mustang?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by burpgun, Jan 5, 2017.

  1. burpgun


    Jun 29, 2015
    Hey folks. Just wanted to game this out. For the last decade or so I've owned an Ovation Magum 1. It's in pretty good shape and is all original. I've been trying to sell it on Craigslist for quite a while with no bites, but given how rare the instrument is, it's hard to know how to price it. It's a good bass but I've sort of lost my passion for it. It doesn't sound as good as my '75 Precision and it's a giant, heavy thing, and I say that as a fairly tall guy.

    Meanwhile, there's a local shop with a '72 Mustang bass that's fairly beat up but plays great. I could see it with flats as a great thumper. It's priced at $1,100 which seems a little rich for its condition, but hey, it's an NYC shop. The Mustang also had the pickup area routed out for a different pickup, but was restored to original specs.

    I'm weighing a trade that would likely involve me putting in some cash. Would I be a fool to do this? I know I'd prefer the Mustang and get more mileage out if it than the Magnum, which just sits there on the wall. But I also can be patient and wait as long as it take to find some Jah Wobble fan who just needs a Magnum.

    What would you do?
  2. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    A bass that you don't like and isn't getting played should be moved along. Yeah, you may take a hit but if it gets you a bass you will play, why not. It's a very special item and may take a while before you find someone in a Journey Tribute band who needs one of that era when Ross Mallory used one live.
  3. ajkula66


    Sep 23, 2016
    Two things here:

    a) How much do you have the Magnum listed for, if you don't mind me asking?

    b) Personally, I'd pass on a Mustang that was modded in the manner that you've described at the given price tag.

    If the Ovation were mine I'd wait it out. There are far more Mustangs in the wild than there are Magnums, and even with "vintage" insanity that seems to be predominant nowadays, neither of them is an easy sell, even for a NYC shop.

    My $0.02 only...
    pcake likes this.
  4. burpgun


    Jun 29, 2015
    I've got my Magnum listed at $1,200 but I'm flexible. Clearly hard to get a reliable read on what it should go for, and I've seen them on CL and Reverb for around that amount. I got mine because of Jah Wobble, but at this point, even if it's heavy dub, I can get there just fine with a Precision.
  5. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    i was torn on this since it would get you right into a bass you like better till i read that the mustang had also been re-routed for different pickups.

    have you tried selling your ovation or offering it for trade here on TB?

    i sell a lot of guitars, basses, fitness equipment and cameras on ebay and CL. if an item doesn't sell after a few weeks, i lower the price it's listed for; if it still doesn't sell, i drop the price again. consider this - people can list items at any price they like, but they may not actually sell it for that price. and btw, i sell better on ebay than any place - anything i can't sell on CL i always sell on ebay.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2017
  6. M.R. Ogle

    M.R. Ogle Supporting Member Commercial User

    Nov 5, 2004
    Mount Vernon, Illinois
    Backstage Guitar Lab owner
    I agree. The Magnum is much more of a rarity, and you just have to find the right buyer. Maybe not locally. But SOMEBODY out there will love to have it.
    cdef and bholder like this.
  7. If the Magnum is in excellent to mint condition and has the case then $1200 might not be totally crazy but it's definitely on the extreme high end. They normally sell in the $700-900 range from what I have seen. Sometimes less depending on condition. That price on the Mustang is very high considering it was modded. If I really liked the Mustang I would consider the trade but mainly if it was straight across or $100 or less in cash.
    cdef likes this.
  8. lz4005


    Oct 22, 2013
    Both those things can't be true at the same time.

    That Mustang might be worth half what they're asking.
  9. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Yeah, routing like that - even if the pickguard covers it up, will/should cut the value by a great amount. Even up trade at best. No cash from you.

    It's too bad the Ovation is so heavy as it's a cool looking bass.
  10. burpgun


    Jun 29, 2015
    If I end up keeping the Ovation, it's not the end of the world. It's a cool bass and maybe I'll get back into it. As for the Mustang, everything you all say makes sense. Probably not worth its price given the reversed mods, and it's just not a good trade. I know the shop owner won't do the trade without some cash on my end, and we never got to the point of finding out how much.
  11. Rocker949


    Apr 20, 2005
    Sooner or later someone is probably going to want to buy the Ovation at a good price. Even if I wanted the Mustang, I'd probably pass on it considering the situation.
  12. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    Yep. Changed my mind. Keep it until you can sell it on your own terms. Maybe you'll want to keep it. Get a big, wide strap. It'll help with the weight. Or play sitting. I sit when I practice and when I play at church.

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