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Bit of a fixer-upper


anzoid
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42 minutes ago, Beedster said:

Maple board will need a refin, so either expertise or about £150 will be required. I’ve been there before with a similar bass 

Too right, this would be wrecked if the new owner thinks a good rub down with glasspaper and re-lacqure will do for that, unless they really know what they're doing. I've even had a couple of factory fretless basses, let down by a fingerboard that had hills and dips.

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1 hour ago, Beedster said:

Maple board will need a refin, so either expertise or about £150 will be required. I’ve been there before with a similar bass 

 

1 hour ago, Grangur said:

Too right, this would be wrecked if the new owner thinks a good rub down with glasspaper and re-lacqure will do for that, unless they really know what they're doing. I've even had a couple of factory fretless basses, let down by a fingerboard that had hills and dips.

Yep, and to be honest, £150 is at the low end, that board looks very dirty meaning that over and above a refin - essential as this is a wood that on a fretless is dependent on a finish unlike rosewood, ebony etc - finger dirt has got into the wood and it could well need some work to get the surface back to playable in real terms (OK, it's 'playable' as is, but you get my point). My maple fretless repair - done to a neck that looked to be in better condition than the one in this listing - cost £300, although it was an outstanding job done my a real expert (Martin Simms), and was probably a far higher quality and longer lasting finish than when the bass left the factory. 

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If the neck needs £300 of work; which may well be the case. The body also needs some work if you're wanting it back up to good condition. This could mean stripping re-stain and re-lacqure, plus replacement of knobs...

It's possible it's already met it's true value if you're thinking of the bass plus work not costing more than that to buy a good one. Then there's the question of, "do you really want a fretless to sell in this market, if you're looking to move it on?"

I'd love it as a project, but I'm out.

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3 hours ago, Grangur said:

If the neck needs £300 of work; which may well be the case. The body also needs some work if you're wanting it back up to good condition. This could mean stripping re-stain and re-lacqure, plus replacement of knobs...

It's possible it's already met it's true value if you're thinking of the bass plus work not costing more than that to buy a good one. Then there's the question of, "do you really want a fretless to sell in this market, if you're looking to move it on?"

I'd love it as a project, but I'm out.

It'd only be viable if you could do the work yourself.

(Or if you happened to have a spare neck lying around.)

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This is an RS940, a pretty uncommon fretless version of the RS924 Roadster, from 1980/81. Apart from the repaced tone control knobs it's complete, (which is quite unusual) and aside from the unknown condition of the fingerboard is in reasonable overall condition.

Needs a new 3-way selector & possibly active on/off switch, although it may just be missing its nut. At this point I'd be more likely to think the wiring & lack of battery are probably why there's no output rather than the electronics themselves being the fault, but (apropos of not a lot) I have an RS924 and the active circuit doesn't add much bar volume. If it was me I'd bin the pre if it's cooked, and wire it v/v/t/t like the passive RS824. Added benefit would be the ability to balance the pickups.

Without seeing it for real I can't comment of the state of the board but I can't see any huge grooves. A bit of marking from the rounds but if I was after this I'd be crossing my fingers it was mostly cosmetic muck and there were no warping/truss issues.

Thing is, in good nick an RS924 is a £500-odd bass, same for the fretless version, and its scarcity makes it collectable for some folk, so maybe a bit more. If this was listed better I can see it getting £250-£300 in its present condition - in fact it still might. Needless to say if I was still in the fixing up & flogging game I'd be all over this.

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8 minutes ago, Bassassin said:

This is an RS940, a pretty uncommon fretless version of the RS924 Roadster, from 1980/81. Apart from the repaced tone control knobs it's complete, (which is quite unusual) and aside from the unknown condition of the fingerboard is in reasonable overall condition.

Needs a new 3-way selector & possibly active on/off switch, although it may just be missing its nut. At this point I'd be more likely to think the wiring & lack of battery are probably why there's no output rather than the electronics themselves being the fault, but (apropos of not a lot) I have an RS924 and the active circuit doesn't add much bar volume. If it was me I'd bin the pre if it's cooked, and wire it v/v/t/t like the passive RS824. Added benefit would be the ability to balance the pickups.

Without seeing it for real I can't comment of the state of the board but I can't see any huge grooves. A bit of marking from the rounds but if I was after this I'd be crossing my fingers it was mostly cosmetic muck and there were no warping/truss issues.

Thing is, in good nick an RS924 is a £500-odd bass, same for the fretless version, and its scarcity makes it collectable for some folk, so maybe a bit more. If this was listed better I can see it getting £250-£300 in its present condition - in fact it still might. Needless to say if I was still in the fixing up & flogging game I'd be all over this.

Problem is that the photos are just not quite good enough are they :)

I had one of these a few years ago, and its a very nice bass, and the dots on the treble side of the board were really helpful, more so than lines to be honest. But those bloody maple fretless boards are a nightmare, I wouldn't own another bass with one because they are so bloody fragile in real terms (compared to rosewood, ebony etc). I think if you have a light touch and a new board then you're OK, but I found even flatwounds started to wear mine pretty quickly. 

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Seems sometimes that things that need work or things that look like they are going to be cheap end up much more expensive than a good example of the same thing. I guess people think it is going to go cheap and end up invested in it. I have certainly sold something broken on ebay for more than a working example (via auction). 

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On 22/08/2020 at 11:53, Woodinblack said:

Seems sometimes that things that need work or things that look like they are going to be cheap end up much more expensive than a good example of the same thing. I guess people think it is going to go cheap and end up invested in it. I have certainly sold something broken on ebay for more than a working example (via auction). 

People search for words such as 'project' or 'parts only' on exactly that basis, and sometimes forget to search for the same item in good working order! I get it, fixing up a bass (or anything really) can be great fun/therapy, and there's real sense of achievement when a no-hope mongrel is transformed into a closet classic.

The flip side is that there's also a lot of people searching for gear they can buy cheap and move on at a profit, keep an eye on this same bass under 'rare', 'vintage' 'relic' etc in about a week :)

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3 hours ago, Beedster said:

The flip side is that there's also a lot of people searching for gear they can buy cheap and move on at a profit, keep an eye on this same bass under 'rare', 'vintage' 'relic' etc in about a week :)

That's exactly what I was doing 10-15 years back - and exactly why I would've set a limit of £150 had I been bidding on this. The potential for this only having parts value is significant and even if it's salvageable, making it good enough to resell at a worthwhile profit would be a considerable time investment. But I did like to do a decent job.

"Ebay Madness" is a real thing, lost count of the times I'd drop out of an auction and watch the price of a potential piece of junk go stratospheric, as a pair of bidders got into a willy-waving contest about it.

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