Vintage Fender Jazz Bass - Pickup Cavity Brown Material

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by radvbass, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    I looked into this 70's Jazz Bass body and there is a brown material in the pickup cavity. It looks like it is excess finish that soaked into the pickup foam on the brass plate. It is also under the brass plate. Questions: Is this a re-finish? is it an adhesive? Did something melt? Is this on-purpose? Is this factory? is this an enhancement?
    Too many questions. Both pickup cavities. Not in electronics route.
    Experience would be appreciated.
    1974 Jazz
    2019-06-12_14-05-55.jpg 2019-06-12_13-53-49.jpg WP_20190612_10_10_56_Pro.jpg WP_20190612_10_36_32_Pro.jpg
  2. Gunga Din

    Gunga Din

    Jun 22, 2018
    Fender made a Mocha finish around that time but it was darker than that on your bass.

    I'd reckon thats a re-fin. And that gunk in the neck pocket must be affecting neck/body contact. Sand it out.
  3. Gunga Din

    Gunga Din

    Jun 22, 2018
    Hhmmm.....maybe it is a Mocha Jazz. Did you look at the wood underneath the pickup grounding plates?
  4. Ghastly


    Oct 18, 2015
    Mill Valley
    I've never seen that before. Looks kind of like glue. My instinct says it's not factory but I could be wrong.
  5. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    The last thing I did was exactly that. I had the bass all back together and thought to take one last look. The pic is attached. There is material underneath. I assume it was in a liquid form originally. The color is almost identical to the finish color, but I'm not experienced enough to know if it is run off from refinishing or an adhesive to hold the foam to the brass plate. or maybe electronics protection. I just don't know. The last pic is attached.

    Attached Files:

  6. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    I'm trying to sort out the pocket. I will sand it out probably. But i'm trying to determine re-fin vs. lack of factory quality control. It could be either. Other body pics attached.
    WP_20190612_10_36_44_Pro.jpg WP_20190612_10_38_07_Pro.jpg WP_20190612_10_21_04_Pro.jpg WP_20190612_10_22_17_Pro.jpg
  7. Gunga Din

    Gunga Din

    Jun 22, 2018
    There's no evidence of any other paint in any of the other cavities? Can we see a full shot of the body?
  8. Gunga Din

    Gunga Din

    Jun 22, 2018
    The Mochas were a dark brown but some have lightened with age, probably due to the paint mix, though poly shouldn't alter when fully cured. I wonder if you've got a Friday Mocha Jazz.
  9. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    LOL on the Friday Mocha Jazz. Nice
  10. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    Full body shot. Not much aging difference between under pickguard vs exposed WP_20190612_10_10_44_Pro.jpg WP_20190612_10_10_56_Pro.jpg
  11. Gunga Din

    Gunga Din

    Jun 22, 2018
    Seems to have lost a lot of the clear poly. Difficult to tell without seeing it in person.
  12. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Not really an expert here but the consistency of the mocha color through the cavities and no other competing colors and that white powdery stuff (buffing compound) that seems to be prevalent in many Fenders tells me it’s the original finish 45+ years later.

    The glop looking collection in the PU cavity is likely just slop. That was Fender production line during that era. As long as any excess didn’t interfere with assembly-finish, it was kicked down the line. That’s mass production 101.

    Seems original to me. Looking forward to what the knowledgeable TalkBass readers have to say.
  13. Lava

    Lava Supporting Member

    Jul 14, 2014
    El Paso, TX
    It's Mocha Mojo!
  14. TNCreature

    TNCreature Jinkies! Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2010
    Philadelphia Burbs
    Its obviously some delicious caramel.
    A little snack for the bass player with a sweet tooth.
  15. johnson79


    Jan 8, 2010
    Lancaster, PA
    If it's not hurting anything I'd say leave it alone. Don't sand the pocket too much. The stamps all appear original.
    P. Aaron, JIO, scuzzy and 2 others like this.
  16. arbiterusa


    Sep 24, 2015
    Don't sand the neck pocket. You'll make it far more uneven.
  17. pbass74


    Sep 19, 2015
    Sunland, CA
    I have a 1975 Fender Precision which I bought brand new. I never really opened it up until a few years ago. The original foam under the pickups had dissolved/melted and metamorphosed into a hard plastic blob. That may be what you are seeing here. It was almost like someone had melted some ABS plastic and poured it into the bottom of the pickup cavity. WEIRD!
  18. FranF

    FranF Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2004
    Northeastern PA
    That finish is absolutely original. Don't touch the neck pocket or pickup cavities! There's no "loss" from contact between the body and neck. Sheesh.... If that were the case, every single Fender bass and guitar made between 1950 and now would be similarly afflicted. lol.
    P. Aaron, Polka1 and scuzzy like this.
  19. radvbass

    radvbass Supporting Member

    May 19, 2019
    Thanks all. The bass plays great. My 1975 natural now has an older brother. I'm not gonna do much to it except play it and figure out how to keep it in great condition for the years to come.
    MCF likes this.
  20. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Inactive

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    That’s the funk that bass has, leave it alone and rock it!!
    scuzzy and Wisebass like this.
  21. Jim C

    Jim C I believe in the trilogy; Fender, Stingray, + G&L Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2008
    Bethesda, MD
    I don't recall the "stick" used to hold the neck while painting leaving a masked area that looks like that.
    Maybe not all the same mask line?