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Wilfer Basses

Discussion in 'Basses [DB]' started by E_bottom, Mar 26, 2002.


  1. E_bottom

    E_bottom Guest

    Mar 26, 2002
    Detroit
    Hey guys,
    Does anyone have any reviews of the new Emmanuel Wilfer basses sold by Lemur Music and Hammond Ashley. I am a jazz player and I currently play on a Christopher with no amp. I need a bass that would allow me to play with a big, warm, full sound, with out an amplifier. I would of course love to have a Hawkes, 7/8 Juzek, or a Kolstein bass but since I don't have 20K to buy one I was hoping that these would compare. Do they I spoke to Jerry at Lemur and he told me that for this type of application a Wilfer bass in 7/8 or 4/4 would hold up very well to Hawkes and in some cases even out perform Juzeks. Can anyone shed some light on the quality and the natural sound of these basses. Furthermore is there any truth to what Jerry says about a 7/8 or 4/4 Wilfer bass being able to rival a Hawkes or a big Juzek? Also does any one have any idea how my 3/4, violin corner, swellback Christopher laminate would sound next to a 7/8 or 4/4 swellback Wilfer? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. Juzeks go for under 10K. I think after Juzek moved to Germany, Juzeks and Wilfers were more or less the same instruments from the same factory; the only difference being who finished them. I once saw a bass from the early 80's at Mike Shank's that began life as a Wilfer (has inlaid ebony diamond), but wound up a Juzek.
     
  3. Have you considered a hybrid bass?

    I can't afford a fully carved bass, so I'm going to try a 7/8 hybrid Christopher this weekend hoping that it will settle my needs for a happy confluence of volume, tone and price.

    I'll let you know how it sounds.
     
  4. vanderbrook

    vanderbrook Some days, I miss frets... Supporting Member

    Aug 21, 2001
    Denver, CO, USA
    I played a Wilfer model 10 at H-A in Seattle the week before Christmas. Unfortunately, I've never played a Christopher, so a direct comparison is impossible for me. But FWIW, I was quite impressed by the Wilfer bass -- even though I got the Wilhelm Klier that's still posted on their site for $510 more. The Wilfer was wearing Spirocores, and it had a nice, bright sound (as opposed to a nice, dark sound). Brighter than the Klier. I thought it sounded every bit as good as the bass I bought, though in a different way. What really swung me toward the Klier was certain ergonomic factors that are quite likely peculiar to me (5'8", small hands). When I played the Klier, the notes fell right under my fingertips in a way that didn't quite happen on the Wilfer.

    I suspect that with the right strings (whatever that means for you) the Wilfer would suit your needs. I'm sure it would have suited mine. And H-A does nice setup work, should you choose to visit them.

    Good luck!
    Mark
     
  5. E_bottom

    E_bottom Guest

    Mar 26, 2002
    Detroit
    Ed,
    Actually rodney is my current teacher. He tours with Wynton Marsalis and the LCJO but he still ive right here in Detroit so atleast twice a month touring permitting I get a lesson. How did you know what bass that he was playing on? He actually currently plays on a Kolstein Master (I think that's the name) bass. He used to however play on a Kolstein Fendt which I belive I may choose over the Wilfer it's 8700 and I've heard nothing but good reviews on it. Any advice on the Fendt would also help.
     
  6. E_bottom

    E_bottom Guest

    Mar 26, 2002
    Detroit
    Ed,
    Can you post your questions and Martin's answers on the Panormo copies? From what you've heard is the Fendt as good as everybody says? Oh and is the Fendt a Hawks copy?
     
  7. The bass Rodney has is the Kolstein Panormo copy Barrie had exhibited at the Indy convention. It has a dedication to Sam Kolstein on the label inside the bass-side f-hole, right? I know someone who was going to buy it but Rodney beat him to it. The cat I know wound up commissioning one.

    My Fendt copy is absolutely incredible, but is not the same thing as what you'd get or as Reedo's and Rodney Fendts. Mine is the original prototype Barrie did, the others are roughed in Europe and finished by the Kolstein shop. I've played one and it was really nice. If I was looking for something in that price range (8k) I'd give it a lot of consideration. The one I played was nicer than other basses in that price range, including a late '80's Wilfer. And also, in my experience, Barrie's service has been outstanding, always exceeding my expectations.
     
  8. E_bottom

    E_bottom Guest

    Mar 26, 2002
    Detroit
    David,
    So there is no difference between one I could buy and Rodney's or reedo's right? Also how does the sound of this bass compare to a Hawks and does it blow a new Wilfer out of the water?
     
  9. There's no difference between what you'd get and Rodney's Fendt (not the Panormo) and Reedo's.

    I can't compare it to a Hawkes or a new Wilfer. I suggest you call Barrie and ask a lot of questions and call Bryce at Hammond-Ashley and ask the same questions. I don't know what H-A's policy is, but Barrie will send you the bass on a 7 day trial basis prior to purchase.

    And as for Barrie's service that I mentioned earlier, ask Reedo about the time his bass cracked-up from being left in a cold, bone-dry Army storage shed for a month and Barrie repaired it gratis.
     
  10. Yes, I'll say it again, that Kolstein, watta guy! :)
    He is also an excellent source of information and
    advice. Highly Recommended.
     
  11. E_bottom

    E_bottom Guest

    Mar 26, 2002
    Detroit
    Well guys thanks allot you have made the decision a lot easier. I called Barrie yesterday and though he also spoke highly of the Wilfer he did naturally think much higher of his Fendt bass. He told me that in addition to Rodney playing on this bass for quite a while, quite a few symphony's have begun using these basses, which is in it's self a high compliment. Also as you mentioned Barrie came across as a very very nice guy, and that in itself makes me want to do business with Mr. Kolstein. With all the things that this bass has going I can't figure why more people aren't using them. One last thing does any know how I can get in touch with Martin Sheridan I would like to also inquire about his basses and possibly compare the two.
     
  12. Ditto to what both David and Reedo said.
    The only reason that I bought the Amati copy vs the Fendt was string length and my fondness for carved back basses. There are at least 6 Kolstein Fendt basses in the Twin Cities, all bought in the last 3 years and 2 Amatis. They all have great sound.

    Martin home number is 319-372-8331.

    Mark