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Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by hyperlitem, Dec 23, 2001.

  1. hyperlitem

    hyperlitem Guest

    Jul 25, 2001
    Indianapolis, IN
    i didnt know where to put this but it has to do with basses so dunno, move it if u want. How many years old does a bass or guitar have to be before its vintage. Ive heard 10, 15. and 20 years. What is the exact number??
  2. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    I have always been under the impression that it's 20+ years.
  3. In my mind it would have to be made before the '80's at least.
  4. RockFiend


    Aug 23, 2000
    I'm not sure exactly if I'm correct on this but I know someone with a Ludwig drum set which is worth quite alot but the price will sky rocket in a year as it will reach the 25 year marker, which by his account denotes them as a vintage set, and a collecting magazine he owns says that this is a standard length of time...
  5. Will the nut, hard ware, electronics, hold up that long? What happens if they corrode, fret wear, solder joint failures, warping of the wood? Especially if the bass resides in tropical, hot and humid(90%+ humidity, 90 degree plus temp)?

    Just wondering
  6. gweimer


    Apr 6, 2000
    Columbus, OH
    Well, if it's any help, I've had my Epiphone Embassy for over 20 years (it was made in 1963), and I haven't pampered it. It's held up well, but I do take some care of it. It's one of the few basses from this time that hasn't checked anywhere on the finish. I can't say that the hardware has tarnished any more than when I first got it, and it sounds just as great as the day I picked it up. As I said, I haven't pampered it, but I've also tried to keep it from the extremes of the environment. You'd probably find that anyone collecting vintage basses in the conditions you mention stores them in a controlled environment.
  7. malthumb


    Mar 25, 2001
    The Motor City
    Most quality instruments should hold up for decades, I would think. I had a '79 Music Man that was just starting to show its age when I sold it (micro stresses around the ORIGINAL fretwires in the maple neck).

    I have a 74 Alembic that is showing signs of tarnishing on the brass tuners. The nut is not original, so it's condition is not relevant. I had a '79 Alembic a couple years ago that was in excellent condition except that the finish had checked badly. From 5 feet away you couldn't see it. From up close it looked like a hockey rink just before the zamboni does its thing. Played EXCELLENT.

    My 2 cents.


  8. Brad Johnson

    Brad Johnson

    Mar 8, 2000
    Gaithersburg, Md
    DR Strings
    I have four 20+ year old basses, the 68 Jazz has had checking in the finish for years, the 78 Jazz almost looks new and it's all original, the 80 L2000E is all original, the finish is beat (player abuse) and the preamp distorts after it warms up... otherwise it plays and sound great, especially for a bass that obviously was not babied. The 78 Tobias' custom handwired JHD Audio preamp needs work, otherwise frets, nut, playability, etc. are top notch.

    All of these, especially the Tobias, are amongst the most stable basses I've ever owned, too. I adjusted the truss rod on the 78 Jazz last year when I got it and haven't touched it since. I think I adjusted the rod on the Tobias in the early 90's and the action is still super low and buzz free. All of my basses have the original frets, except for the 68, which came with a different neck when I got it almost 20 years ago..

    The biggest factor is how it's taken care of. No mystery there.
  9. I've got a 1973 Ibanez 2388 Rick-bass and it still looks like it's new, no bumbs or scratches and even the hardware still looks fine, it plays very nice too. It all depends on how you treat your instrument, just like Brad Johnson said.....
  10. bassboat


    Sep 27, 2001
    To me, there are certain "golden years" for different builders. To me that's more important than if it's actually "vintage" or just old.

    Some years, like 72, jazz basses were better than say, 68. Well, highly subjective, I know. But you see my point.

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