Where can I find a Greco Tbird or a used Cataldo?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by WSquires, Sep 8, 2015.


  1. WSquires

    WSquires Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2015
    Calgary, Alberta
    So I've been seriously craving a second serious bass for gigging. I'm currently playing a 57 AVRI p bass, and though I love it, I would love to have access to the deeper growl of a tbird for my indie alt rock band.
    I've read quite a bit about basses from the Fujigen factory (thanks guys!) and am sure that a Greco Tbird (reverse or non reverse) is a great bass for me. (Nickel hardware, fender-like neck, and a reasonable price point to name a few)

    I just recently sold a guitar of mine and now have the funds, but I haven't had any luck finding any under 800 USD (before shipping) on Ebay, Reverb, J-guitar, Gbase, and TB. So here's my question, do any of you know of any other sources I can check out? And is my price point unreasonable? (the Canadian dollar is miserably low... so I hope not!)

    I've also been considering Cataldo basses as I've read good things and dig the sound of the 66 thunderbuckers. I'm certain I would be equally (maybe even more-so) happy with a Cataldo, but I can't find them anywhere! So, similar to the search for a Greco, are there alternative sources I can check out for a Cataldo?
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2015
  2. Off-Beat

    Off-Beat

    Dec 8, 2014
    Vienna, AUT
    There are 2 <800$ on ebay right now, but one is in not so good shape, atleast lookswise.
     
  3. WSquires

    WSquires Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2015
    Calgary, Alberta
    I don't mind if it's player grade. As long as it's playable. But I am looking for something with thunderbird pickups which rules out the Suzi Quatro model.
    I also should have been more specific, (my bad) I'm looking for a bird with two pickups!

    The bass from Mike & Mike's guitar bar looks great and is reasonably priced... but with shipping and duty I'll easily drop another 200 USD.
     
  4. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups
    If you buy a Greco I'd wait for a single pickup one, they have a Rawr that's just awesome!

    thunderbirds018.jpg
     
  5. WSquires

    WSquires Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2015
    Calgary, Alberta
    I've seen your collection, it's quite impressive! Are you suggesting that the dual pickup Grecos don't have the same output as their single pickup counterparts?

    Beautiful tbird btw!
     
  6. DjangoKid

    DjangoKid

    Feb 27, 2013
    Tacoma, WA
  7. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups

    Thank you, I think the single pup ones do indeed have a different tone than the two pick up model, mine has a very growly, angry tone. There's a lot of discussion about Grecos in the club thread of late, drop by, you're always welcome.
     
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  8. veebass

    veebass

    Mar 27, 2014
    Australia
    I am more than happy with the Greco TB 900 I picked up a few months ago. I suspect it is what you are looking for.
    I have gigged some really nice P Basses for years and this is like an angry P Bass but with more everything.
    Since I bought this the P Basses haven't got a gig.
    The neck is very playable and the bass is well built.
    I had been looking for over 12 months for a good single pickup one at a reasonable price.
    I got it through a local friend with personal contacts in Japan for about what you are budgeting, but I think it was a bargain.
    Glad I got it when I did- the $AU has tanked since. Some of the ones I have seen on eBay over the last 12 months would be over $AU2K landed here.
    I don't know where my friend actually sourced it from, sorry.

    2uqyrmh.jpg 335ebg3.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2015
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  9. Matt O

    Matt O

    Feb 19, 2013
    The Mitten
    Another TB 900 owner here. Seriously awesome bass. I'm not sure if it is a different pickup or a slightly different location that the single pickup is in, but it sounds especially aggressive, in a good way. More mid forward than a 2 pup bird, IME. TBird1958 nails the description with Rawr!

    The TB 900 on eBay right now looks pretty iffy. It's missing The E string for who knows how long, which leads to twisty neck. It looks like it is slightly twisted already. The fretboard looks like its starting to pop off as well.

    I found mine by scouring Japanese guitar shop websites.

    Anyway, the Greco TB neck is pretty similar to a B width C profile Precision. Awesome bass.
     
    veebass likes this.
  10. veebass

    veebass

    Mar 27, 2014
    Australia
    Spot on! My main gigging bass for years has been a 73 P with a B width neck. Very similar to play.
     
    Matt O likes this.
  11. veebass

    veebass

    Mar 27, 2014
    Australia
    As for Cataldo basses- they don't come up second hand often for very good reason.
     
  12. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups
    Carlo makes a very nice bass in limited quantity - probably not easily found as a used bass.
     
  13. BeeTL

    BeeTL Commercial User

    Sep 26, 2006
    Oldsmar, FL
    Brad Lowe, Lowe Custom Guitars
    Is it just the pickup's tone you're looking for?

    If so, you can install a Thunderbucker, Lollar or Lull in a P bass body pretty easily.
     
  14. WSquires

    WSquires Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2015
    Calgary, Alberta
    I'll make sure to continue scanning the Japanese shops (thank goodness for Google Chromes built-in translate function). I'm honestly a little surprised to hear that they're so different. The only reason I wanted two pickups was to blend between different positions (a limitation I currently face with my P bass).

    They don't seem to pop up very often. I'm kicking myself for missing this JAEbird:
    SOLD - Cataldo Custom Basses JAE Fenderbird Custom 2011 Tennessee Orange | TalkBass.com

    I absolutely love the sound of my P bass, I just want to expand my tonal possibilities. :p
    Their might be a little bit of G.A.S. fuelling this endeavour though.
     
    BeeTL likes this.
  15. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups
    I'd really look for a single pup one, they don't come around often - just worth the wait! The pickup isn't like any of the Thunderbird reproductions in tone, quite a bit more growl.
     
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  16. WSquires

    WSquires Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 2015
    Calgary, Alberta
    I'll definitely keep the single pup in mind! The growl does sound worth it. Does any one have a sound clip with the TB900? I've scoured the web for a sample and am coming out empty handed.

    Quick question though, does the growl have more to do with the pickups used before the Super Real series or is it really just model specific? Are you all using 70's Greco T-birds? Is it the 80's and 90's birds that lack that 'rawr' you speak of?
     
  17. Pickup placement is most likely the largest factor, IMO.
     
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  18. TBird1958

    TBird1958 As a matter of fact....I am your Queen! Staff Member

    Mar 13, 2008
    Seattle Washington
    Endorsing Artist Mike Lull T Bass pickups

    Veebass and I have '77s, I'm not sure about Matt O's. I don't know specifically know if/how the pups may have changed on later production. IIRC I spent about $650.00-700.00 on mine plus the 200.00 Air Freight, I'm always very glad I did! It's a very different 'Bird - in a very good way! Sorry I don't have any sound clips.
     
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  19. Matt O

    Matt O

    Feb 19, 2013
    The Mitten
    That's likely true. But, I think the single pups may be a design that is voiced differently to cover more tonal range than a standard neck pup. The other thing that may be happening is that a 2 pup bass can often have a natural scoop in the mids where the frequencies of the bridge and neck pups overlap. The TB 900 is very active in the mids, but retains a great deal of low end and crisp highs, probably because that cancellation effect isn't there.

    Regardless, it is one of the best sounding pickups I've heard.
     
  20. Matt O

    Matt O

    Feb 19, 2013
    The Mitten
    Mine's a '77 as well. It was a fine year!
     
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  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
    Jun 19, 2021

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