Sunday, 28 September 2014

Teisco SPB-200 Spectrum Bass reissue circa 2000

guitarz.blogspot.com:
We've looked at similar design Teisco Spectrum 5 guitars here before (here, here and here) but until I saw this eBay listing just now I hadn't realised that there was a bass version too, the Teisco
SPB-200 Spectrum Bass. What an absolute beauty, just check out those curves and contours and that gorgeous German carve! It's a short-scale bass with a scale length of 30.3", so it's going to have a certain retro tone but that's not something that should put off any bassist with imagination.

Like Henry Kaiser's see-thru acrylic-bodied Spectrum 5, it isn't a vintage Teisco but rather a relatively modern Japanese-made "re-issue", circa 2000 (see more here). (Obviously, the originals were Japanese-made too, I just wanted to emphasise that it wasn't made in Korea, China, Indonesia, etc, as many other re-issues are these days).

Currently listed on eBay with a Buy It Now price of US $699.99 (item located in Japan).

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
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Thursday, 25 September 2014

Barcley-branded Japanese copy of Fender Maverick/Custom

guitarz.blogspot.com:
The Fender Custom - also known as the Maverick (see here) - was a short-lived model "designed" by the CBS-owned incarnation of the Fender Corporation and was really an exercise in using up stock body and neck components for the Fender Electric XII (first produced in 1965) which had not proved to be a big seller. The resulting guitars do appear to our eyes now to be Frankenstein jobs, but perhaps we should applaud Fender who were essentially simply re-cycling (or is that up-cycling) parts. According to Fender, just "several hundred" were made and the model was never popular; it was only produced for one year and managed to hang on in the Fender catalogue until 1972.

...which makes it all the more bizarre that someone in Japan thought it would be a good guitar to make a copy of. Witness the photos above of this Japanese-made Barcley guitar currently listed on eBay UK. The hardware is pretty standard fodder for cheap Japanese guitars of the time, and the neck makes no attempt to copy the 12-string derived hockeystick headstock of the Fender "original". In fact, here the headstock is a design that some of us might recognise from other Japanese brands such as Greco and Sekova.

The body design, however, is pure Custom/Maverick. It seems strange to think that this body was cut out and shaped deliberately to look like the body of a guitar that took a Fender Electric XII body and cut chunks off of it!

This guitar is currently listed on eBay UK and has a Buy It Now price of £129. Thanks to occasional Guitarz contributor David from Barcelona for bringing this guitar to my attention via the Vintage Japanese Guitar Fanclub group page on Facebook. Incidentally, the discussion on the thread concerning this guitar mentions that the Barcley brandname (spelt with a "E") was for guitars intended for the Canadian market, whereas Barclay (with an "A") was for the USA.

You can read more about the original Fender Custom/Maverick and also the similar "up-cycled" Swinger/Musiclander/Arrow model here.

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

What is this vintage Japanese (very) short-scale bass?

guitarz.blogspot.com:

Dirk writes:

Hi Gavin...

I'd need your help please to identify this plywood bass, short-scale...
Seems to be late sixties, early seventies, Japanese made...
Tuners changed, rest original...

Fully operating, no buzz, not quite playable got to fiddle out a set of strings.....
So if you or any of your readers could hint me, I'd appreciate highly....
Cheers, thanx and keep your Independence...

Dirk

Hi Dirk, it looks to me like a Jedson. The design is very loosely based on that of the Telecaster. I'm pretty sure these guitars and (very) short-scale basses also appeared with other brand names on the headstock, e.g. Zenta.

There is a similar Jedson bass in sunburst on eBay UK at the time of writing, and it is priced at £165 which seems to be the going rate for these today. Personally, I'd value it at nearer £50, but perhaps some Jedson/Zenta fans out there might like to explain why they are worth more.

The only (minor) claim to fame that these guitars have, as far as I am aware, is that Nigel Planer's character Neil was playing one of these (the six string guitar version) in the stolen Routemaster bus before it went over the cliff in the final episode of the classic BBC TV comedy The Young Ones.

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Monday, 22 September 2014

No-name 1960s Japanese solidbody guitar with a strong Burns influence

guitarz.blogspot.com:
Tyler B writes:

I thought I'd share with you the most recent addition to my collection. Outside of the fact that it is made in Japan, and likely mid-to-late 60s, I can't really tell you more about it's origin. The seller was quick to throw around the word Teisco and while that may very well be accurate, I'm not going to assert it as fact. I've seen the same truss rod cover and pickups on Imperial and Guyatone branded guitars specifically, but coming from a time when building guitars was anyone's game, who knows. There is no trace of any emblem or other branding anywhere; no glue residue, screw holes, etc.

However, I do know it has a definite resemblance to the Burns Bison. The pointed horns, large single coils, and a segmented pickguard really pick it out as an obvious influence.


The rotary allows you to select the usual 5 positions on a Strat, and offers a sixth position for all 3 pickups at once. I can't really tell what the slider switch does for sure, though it seems to be wired to the tone circuit (you may be able to see in the picture), perhaps some sort of boost?

Beyond the electronics, the hardware is the usual kind you'd expect on a guitar like this. Sadly, while the bridge is still easily adjustable, the roller saddles have succumbed to decades of neglect and are frozen. That said, without the bar, the vibrato won't do much good anyhow...but it sure is pretty! I also found the neck pocket pretty interesting.


This was a rare one for me, I never seem to get these old things in working order, it was nice to be able to clean it up and go without having to completely restore it! Plays pretty well thanks in part to a straight neck and fairly clean frets, I'm hoping to get it out on stage sometime soon!

Tyler B

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Friday, 19 September 2014

1980s Westone Rail Bass headless design with sliding pickup

guitarz.blogspot.com:
Hello!

I'm a casual bass player with a lifetime goal to eventually become a bit better than at the moment. I first heard about Westone's Rail Bass in your blog (http://guitarz.blogspot.fi/2009/04/westone-rail-bass.html), and now a couple of years later I finally bought one on eBay. Cost me a bit less than 500 euros (£380, $650). Even though red is the least cool color it was produced in, I love the way it looks. Attached are a couple of photos of the bass and its sliding pickup. You can use them in the blog or store them in the archives.

Cheers,
Jorma Kim
Finland

Very nice. Thanks for the photos! - GLW

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Warwick Buzzard bass from John Entwistle's personal collection for sale on eBay

guitarz.blogspot.com:

One of the late Who bassist's personal instruments has come up for sale on ebay. The following extract is from the eBay listing by the seller 8thstreetmusic:
A piece of Rock n' Roll history - from John Entwistle's personal collection the Warwick "Pink Buzzard" in a red metallic finish (circa 1985). Gorgeous Bass guitar with signed custom hardshell case and an Entwistle spider doodle. The bass plays and looks great, the Illuminated side dots added a little extra flare and visibility while on stage.

This bass has a huge crack down the middle and back. As the lore goes, while on tour in the mid 90's, Roger Daltry asked Entwistle to turn his bass down. In true rock and roll fashion, Entwistle threw the bass at Daltry and said, "you play the F***in' thing", as the bass hit the ground it cracked right down the middle.
Currently listed on eBay with a Buy It Now price of US $32,500.

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Silvertone 14409 vintage Japanese Mosrite-inspired surftastic guitar

guitarz.blogspot.com:
This 1960s Japanese "Silvertone model 14409" guitar (made by Kawai possibly?) has some very strong Mosrite stylistic influences, although that proto-Ibanez-style headstock does look a little at odds with the body design. Despite the obvious influences instruments like this are becoming increasingly sought after in their own right, with more and more collectors becoming interested in vintage Japanese-made guitars.

Currently listed on eBay with a Buy It Now price of $344.99.

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Fender Jazz-A-Caster, MIJ signature model of Will Ray of the Hellacasters

guitarz.blogspot.com:
This 1998 Japanese-made Will Ray (of the Hellacasters) signature model Fender Jazz-A-Caster is one of those weird Fender hybrids that takes one of their models and mixes it up with elements from another model. It's a bit like the Pawn Shop series but on a grander Custom Shop scale. This so-called Jazz-a-caster obviously has a lot of Telecaster in its DNA but also has a little Jazzmaster thrown into the mix. This particular model is signed by Will Ray and is numbered #242 out of 300 examples made.

Currently listed on eBay with a Buy It Now price of US $1,390. It's kind of ironic that he has this expensive signature model made by Fender when he writes Bottom Feeder, a regular column for Premier Guitar where he celebrates all his latest cheap and cheerful guitar acquisitions (and which I utterly applaud).

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

a message from one of our readers (warning, graphic picture)


I received this message from Micha:

"Dear Bertram,

while looking through the internet, I found your blog post from 2010, about the ARIA Pro II Integra IG-CST

I bought the ARIA Pro II Integra IG-CST 1993 when my daughter was born and played this special electric guitar for many years. Though listening and playing grows from my experience with my main instrument the bass clarinet, I was lucky that this electric guitar sounds great in any context… 

In September 2012 a fire burned 8 of my guitars and amps and tools. Since then I continued playing and upgraded my amps and guitars. BUT the ARIA Pro II Integra IG-CST is a rare instrument... I am looking for one that I can buy. Please tell me if you know somebody who wants to sell his ARIA Pro II Integra IG-CST. 

 Best regards, Micha"

Hope someone can help Micha with what seems indeed to be a great guitar!

Bertram D


© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Arbiter 12+6 Doubleneck leftie conversion

guitarz.blogspot.com:
As I already mentioned recently, I'm on something of a doubleneck kick lately. I'll explain more in a forthcoming blog post, but in the meantime here's a doublenck Arbiter 12+6 based on the now legendary Gibson EDS-1275, which has been very comptently converted into a left-handed guitar. It's got to be a better leftie doubleneck than some of the Chinese-made cheapies being sold on eBay.

Currently listed on eBay with a starting bid of £299.

G L Wilson

© 2014, Guitarz - The Original Guitar Blog - the blog that goes all the way to 11!
Please read our photo and content policy.

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