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Treacherous Waters: selling off a bass collection for a Lakland 55-02?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by MicG, Feb 6, 2014.

  1. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    Alright so I'm posting this hoping to hear some different view points on a potentially regretful decision. I'm aware of the fact that you don't know me from Adam but it's always refreshing to try and gain some perspective through others.

    I've got 4 basses: EBMM Classic 'Ray 4, Fender AVRI '62 Jazz w/ Fralins, Fender AVRI '63 Precision w/ Fralins, and a limited ed. '01 Gibson 'bird. I own these because I appreciate each type of sound. It's taken me a few years to get to these instruments.

    Some personal insight: My wife and I just got married this past October. We managed to pay for the wedding upfront and things are tight now. Her full time job has become (very) unstable causing me to look into alternative and creative financial solutions until we're both back up and running again. I could unload these basses to build some savings and pay off bills faster. She has already expressed to me how upset it would make her to find out I sold off my entire collection just because of money.

    No kids, No gigs, No band, no mortgage, good credit, etc...

    I'm poking around with the idea of selling these instruments to fund a Lakland 55-02 and banking the rest to help our situation. I've seen and heard videos of these basses coping believable P, J, and 'ray tones, but for the T-bird I might be out of luck.

    What would you do? Sell the collection, pick up the 55-02, and bank the cash? Or enjoy the collection, weather the storm, and keep the wife happy? :meh:

    I appreciate your taking the time to read this.
  2. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    I went through a similar situation years ago and ended up selling everything except one bass. I stopped playing in bands for 3 years, picked up a part time job and never regretted it. I am now playing quite a bit and own several basses and amps.
  3. BawanaRik


    Mar 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    The smart money says things are getting better. I would get the wife to take her career more seriously.

    Maybe work two jobs if she has to.

    Those basses are kinda like money in the bank. You can always sell them if you need to.
    The other thing is if the marriage goes belly up they were yours going in. You have at least a chance of them being yours going out.

    And then there's the cost of transaction. Kinda like thermo there's always a loss.

    BTW if you can get a line of credit now while everything looks good it's easier than if one of you loses a job.

    Do not use the line of credit but it's nice knowing it's there.
  4. Guitalia


    Jun 7, 2008
    Baltimore, MD
    You describe your wife's job situation but not your own. If you're not working, or not working much, why not try to get a band gig that would help to pay some bills while you're looking for the right day job?

    That's all I've got. The most useful post was already posted: Kmonk, post #2.
  5. gbrooding

    gbrooding Supporting Member

    Dec 22, 2011
    I have a similar story as well. 20 years ago I had 4 basses and 2 kids in diapers. Sold 3 and kept 1 in order to pay the bills. Didn't play much during the past 10 years or so. My wife and kids have always been my first priority,and having basses and playing in bands just wasn't to be. Well, fast forward to today, I am back up to 3 basses, and play in 2 bands. Looking back on it, I wouldn't change a thing. Whatever you sell now, you can always replace down the road. It hurt at first when I sold my gear, but I like the stuff I have now better!
  6. Bassisgood4U

    Bassisgood4U Banned

    Jan 30, 2014
    I wouldn't sell any of those basses, dude. That's a well rounded collection. Sounds like you're already regretting just the thought of selling them off, anyhow..taking a big loss on each instrument.
  7. MEKer

    MEKer Supporting member

    May 30, 2006
    You may want to dig a little deeper into things. And who, exactly, are these "smart money"? You must be unaware of several fuses that have been lit for some time now.:rollno:


    Dec 13, 2009
    Chicago, IL
    Before committing entires to the 55-02, I'd probably try it out first. I love Lakland. I'm a Chicago cat, but feel comes first. If you don't like the feel and just sold off your whole collection...... It could be a waste.

    I think it's very honorable to sell off your collection like this. Do what you gotta do, plus I think you'll get a couple wife points. If you end up getting the Lakland, I'm sure you'd be happy, but give it a ride first.
  9. BawanaRik


    Mar 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Probably not the place to have this discussion.

    Let's sit back and see what happens.

    I would hold onto the basses. Once somethings is sold it seems it a bit harder to get it back. And it seems to always cost a little more.

    When a person has a bass they enjoy? Hold onto to it. This man sounds happy with his wood. Enjoy it.
  10. uOpt


    Jul 21, 2008
    Boston, MA, USA
    That's nuts. About sums it up. A couple sub-1000 sales don't really make a dent in long term financials.
  11. Jefff


    Aug 14, 2013
    Many years ago I had to sell off everything. Sometimes a few thousand dollars can keep a person from going over the edge...short term.

    Play the Lakland, do what needs to be done.
  12. chinmullet


    Jun 22, 2013
    Keep your priorities straight, and handle your adult obligations.

    Those bases may as well be firewood if you can't pay your bills.

    Worst idea would be keeping the bases and charge the same amount on on credit cards that you would get selling them. That's typical thinking of people who get in years long financial struggles.

    And thanks in advance for not being a parasite and getting food stamps and aid on our dime, while sitting on thousands of dollars of nonessential belongings like bases. :rollno: That would deserve a well earned kick in the balls.
  13. BawanaRik


    Mar 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Been there when I was younger. Scared to heck out of me.

    I don't do debt because of that.
  14. MicG

    MicG Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2006
    Garden City, Michigan
    Thanks to all who have shared their thoughts so far.

    As far as my background is concerned: I teach public speaking in a urban charter middle school near Detroit. Like many teaching jobs in the area, nothing is a guarantee, but I'm stable with what I've got right now.

    Wifey works full time in social work also near Detroit as well as part time at Panera Bread.

    We are literally about to pay off all of our (consumer) credit card debt within the next few months and then begin building savings (without the aid of liquidating gear). At the same time, her full time job has become a real issue that is beyond the scope of this thread. The part time job *might* become a temporary full time gig depending on hours.

    I share this info to explain that we're not exactly in dire straits quite yet but rather just trying to be proactive and make conversation about the situation.

    The opinion of those who are closer to me is: "don't do anything until you can't afford to do anything; if the essentials are at risk, then you know what you have to do."

    Think I'm going to sleep on it.
  15. Dr. Cheese

    Dr. Cheese Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 3, 2004
    Metro St. Louis
    Unless you can't help it, keep your gear. IME, replacing it in the future may be much harder than you think.

    A 55-02 is a great bass, I have owned a few, but it is not a true substitute for four basses you love.
  16. Baird6869

    Baird6869 RIP Gord Downey. A True Canadian Icon. Supporting Member

    It's just stuff. And likely replaceable down the road if required.

    A 55-02 is a great bass but your current 4 are great basses as well.

    As others mentioned, the 4 basses you own are desireable and basically money in the bank. Keep them and sell 1, 2, 3 or all 4 of them when (hopefully IF) you need the cash.

    Seriously.... my wife, house, kids (know you don't have any currently), health, etc. are MUCH more important to me than my Fender and Fodera basses. I wouldn't think twice selling any of them to pay my mortgage or heat bill.

    Good to see you are cautious and proactive when there is still a good chance you and your wife will get thru this and laugh about it in a year or two.

    Good luck.:)
  17. StuartV

    StuartV Finally figuring out what I really like Supporting Member

    Jul 27, 2006
    Manassas, VA
    IFF you get to the point of needing the cash more than the basses, I'd say to pick one as a keeper and sell the rest. I'd keep the Stingray or the P, but that's just me.

    I would not sell all 4 just to buy 1. Once you sell the other 3, you're down to selling the last one just to buy a Skyline. If it's the P or the Ray, you're looking at netting MAYBE $300 - 400 (and probably less) by selling it and buying a 55-02. Not worth it if the one you're selling is one that you've spent years coming to.
  18. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    I am with the good doctor on this one. A bird in the hand and all that...
  19. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    I would enjoy the collection, weather the storm, and keep the wife happy...not just because Keeping The Wife Happy ought to be priority #1, but also because
    A) a Lakland 55-02, while certainly a very nice bass (I own one, fwiw), isn't so nice a bass that you wouldn't possibly think it wasn't worth parting with your collection for; and (more importantly)
    B) I just don't see how selling a MusicMan, a Gibson, and two Fenders -- and then spending ~$1300 of whatever you make from that sale on a Lakland -- is going to leave you and your wife with enough money for this entire exercise to be worth the time & effort. If an extra ~$2500 is going to make that big a difference in your quality of life you have bigger things to worry about than which basses are in your closet, and you should be finding ways to get your financial house in order that don't involve trying to sell non-unique, non-heirloom, non-precious items from your personal inventory.
  20. Son of Wobble

    Son of Wobble

    Mar 8, 2010
    Actually, I think the OP should have tied the "keep the wife happy" result to his other option -- that of selling the collection. Presumably the idea is to offer the cash up to the wife, yes?
    With the subtext being that wifey will also be heartened by the idea that he is putting childish pursuits like music behind him so as to get on with the more serious pursuits of reproduction and bourgeois consumption.

    Why would a a man put himself in such a position?

    And why blow a bunch of dough on something as ephemeral as a wedding when you don't have a war chest?

    Selling off the basses just sounds like yet another poor decision by the OP. In my snarky opinion, of course...