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What is a "lawsuit" bass?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by blastoff99, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. blastoff99

    blastoff99 Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    SW WA, USA
    Many apologies for the stupid question, but I'm genuinely ignorant and curious. I could guess that it has to do with imports, tariffs, and the like, but if someone could shed some light on it, that'd be great. Thanks!
  2. FourBanger


    Sep 2, 2012
    SE Como
    Copies, identical in most cases, of one brand, usually Fender or Gibson, made my Japanese companies decades ago, before they got sued and forced to stop or modify their designs.
  3. garmenteros

    garmenteros Bass Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Aug 24, 2008
    Dominican Republic
    It generally refers to basses which are direct copies of american instruments made in japan in the 70s. Companies like ibanez, greco, aria, yamaha, univox and a host of others copied gibson, rickenbacker, fender, mosrite designs and sold them as their own. The term lawsuit comes from gibson suing the companies over their headstock shape and rickenbacker over their whole body shape and design. Fender did not actively pursue the copies as far as im concerned.
  4. bongomania

    bongomania Gold Supporting Member Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    Some people use the term narrowly to mean only specific models that were actually named in a real lawsuit. Some people use it to mean any Japanese copy from that era.
  5. blastoff99

    blastoff99 Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    SW WA, USA
    Thanks! Very helpful answers.

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