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Vintage MIJ (formerly [email protected]@p) Spotting

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17 hours ago, BreadBin said:

Me too 👍

I had one! My first properly good-quality bass back in my teens. Sold it after a couple of years because it looked too "metal" for the band I was in. The folly of youth etc.

I know a bit about the Washburn Stage series - enough to think that £500 is probably not too wildly overvalued for a good original example. I'm guessing you paid a fair bit less!

There are some decent catalogue scans on the Matsumoku.org site:

http://www.matsumoku.org/models/washburn/catalogs/wb_catalogs.html

Although, paradoxically, MIJ Washburns were never made by Matsumoku - they were initially from Yamaki, with production moving to Chushin Gakki after Yamaki shut up shop.

There are some good FB groups where there are people who know these way better than I do - you'll probably be able to find out about serial decoding, manufacturer & possible value:

Washburn Guitars - The Golden Era

Daions Online

The Daion Guitar

The Daion groups are relevant because that was the house-brand of Yamaki Gakki so there is a lot of crossover between the instruments. The Stage series guitars were designed by Daion/Yamaki head designer Hirotsugu Teradaira, who is in contact with some of the group members, & contributes to discussion.

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Thanks @Bassassin 👍

I paid quite a bit less - right place, right time I guess. The plan was to not like it and punt it on but it plays amazingly, and fits well with my love of all things 80s Washburn.

IMG_20191129_182756.thumb.jpg.ffd97b706e6e095203e861ac4776a3a0.jpg

The S1000 is having a new string retainer made, hence the wonky strings...

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2 hours ago, ash said:

Definitely never seen this before. I'd guess it's Japanese domestic market - export Aria copies disappeared completely by the late 70s, like most other MIJ brands.

I suspect the pickup's a DiMarzio lookalike, like on most MIJ basses from this era. Don't think DiMarzio ever used white covers, did they?

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Posted (edited)

Previously deleted link back again - interesting interview with the bass player from the Japanese band Godiego (remember the Monkey magic TV Series).  Has some interesting details about western musicians having some input into early Japanese instruments.

https://reverb.com/uk/news/interview-godiegos-steve-fox?locale=en-GB

Edited by No. 8 Wire
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So he "helped to design" an exact copy of a Fender Precision? And Fender & Gibson sued Fujigen & Kanda Shokai? Right.

Well - it was a long time ago, maybe his memory isn't what it once was.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Bassassin said:

So he "helped to design" an exact copy of a Fender Precision? And Fender & Gibson sued Fujigen & Kanda Shokai? Right.

Well - it was a long time ago, maybe his memory isn't what it once was.

That's a bit harsh.  He implies in the article that as a player he helped with playability, that's still design detail. He says it's a minor role -  he wasn't even paid.  And people use the term 'lawsuit' in a pretty colloquial way, it doesn't have to mean papers filed and a court decision in everyone's mind.

I didn't put the article up so this player could be treated with cynicism in the time honoured internet tradition, he's a respected Japanese-American musician telling some anecdotes from the early days of Japanese hard rock.  

I've deleted the article, because I in no way want to be responsible for initiating discourteous remarks against this great guy.

 

Edited by No. 8 Wire

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1 hour ago, Bassassin said:

So he "helped to design" an exact copy of a Fender Precision? And Fender & Gibson sued Fujigen & Kanda Shokai? Right.

Well - it was a long time ago, maybe his memory isn't what it once was.

Can’t see the article now Jon, but I thought he said he’d helped with testing and design of the pickups and something to do with hardware?. 🙂 

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3 hours ago, No. 8 Wire said:

I've deleted the article, because I in no way want to be responsible for initiating discourteous remarks against this great guy.

 

I don't think you should have deleted the article, although IMO a thread about instruments for sale on Ebay wasn't necessarily the right place for it.

Regarding comments about "lawsuits" - it's difficult enough with the amount of misinformation online, I suppose I found it particularly galling that someone involved in the business at the time would contribute to perpetuating the myth. For clarity, Fender never sued anyone over anything, and certainly not Kanda, with whom they formed a business partnership in Fender Japan. Gibson's parent company threatened legal action against Hoshino Gakki's US operation, Elger Hoshino, but no action took place.

I'm sorry but this is something that rubs me up the wrong way - I admit I was probably a bit harsh about his input on the Greco bass!

Would you re-post the article please - it's otherwise interesting and I'd like to check out the band in question.

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25 minutes ago, Bassassin said:

I don't think you should have deleted the article, although IMO a thread about instruments for sale on Ebay wasn't necessarily the right place for it.

Regarding comments about "lawsuits" - it's difficult enough with the amount of misinformation online, I suppose I found it particularly galling that someone involved in the business at the time would contribute to perpetuating the myth. For clarity, Fender never sued anyone over anything, and certainly not Kanda, with whom they formed a business partnership in Fender Japan. Gibson's parent company threatened legal action against Hoshino Gakki's US operation, Elger Hoshino, but no action took place.

I'm sorry but this is something that rubs me up the wrong way - I admit I was probably a bit harsh about his input on the Greco bass!

Would you re-post the article please - it's otherwise interesting and I'd like to check out the band in question.

Thanks for the generous reply - I've reposted the link, quite a bit online about about the band Godiego - they are still active I believe - lots of side projects.  Enjoy checking them out.

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38 minutes ago, pete.young said:

To the fair, the stories are so ubiquitous and the truth is so nuanced its hardly surprising sellers repeat what they have read or been told by others.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, BreadBin said:

Quest que c'est?

😂

C'est un Matsumoku-related brand, sub-brand de Vantage:

http://www.matsumoku.org/models/vantage/catalogs/atak-manhattan/pg5.html

5 hours ago, pete.young said:

Dunno what that is, but pretty sure it's not MIJ. Possibly Italian, maybe a Gherson or Melody or somesuch. A bit shonky-looking, whatever it is but quite interesting. Would be a lot more interesting if it was £400 less.

Edited by Bassassin
Bleedin' felt like it, didn't I?
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Posted (edited)

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, pete.young said:

love that T bird! Pricey though..

Edited by skidder652003

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3 hours ago, skidder652003 said:

love that T bird! Pricey though..

Yes, I think it's an optimistic price. I think you could get a genuine Gibson for not much more, although Greco build quality is likely to be better 🙂

 

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Anyone know what that thing that looks like a tailpiece is on the Greco? I've noticed that all Greco's seem to have them, but they all seem to have three point bridges which make them superfluous. Unless of course, I've got the wrong end of the stick...which is possible....

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7 hours ago, W1_Pro said:

Anyone know what that thing that looks like a tailpiece is on the Greco? I've noticed that all Greco's seem to have them, but they all seem to have three point bridges which make them superfluous. Unless of course, I've got the wrong end of the stick...which is possible....

For people who hate string silks being on the bridge peices?

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13 hours ago, Stub Mandrel said:

For people who hate string silks being on the bridge peices?

This. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen these basses with a 3-point bridge and through-body stringing as well.

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23 hours ago, pete.young said:

Yes, I think it's an optimistic price. I think you could get a genuine Gibson for not much more, although Greco build quality is likely to be better 🙂

I doubt you could get a 76 or earlier Gibson Thunderbird (which is what this copy is based on) at that price.

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On 11/05/2020 at 09:35, No. 8 Wire said:

Jarock fretless.  Never heard of the brand, internet search suggests they are similar to Blazers but with funkier colours.  Any info?

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/153926537681

I've encountered these, as will be of immense surprise to precisely nobody. They appear to belong to a small but curious sub-category of 80s MIJ instruments - copies of original Japanese guitars & basses. And obviously this is an Ibanez Blazer copy.

Despite what the seller says they're not from the "Ibanez factory", and beyond cosmetic appearances, are different & lower budget than the originals. This is madly overpriced - £425 would be pretty stupid money for a real Blazer.

It is sort of cool though - I've never seen a factory fretless Jarock before, and they did come in nice sparkly colours; I was outbid on a glitter pink one a while back - I was out at £70.

Apropos of nothing, if anyone's interested, these were also sold (in the US, I'd guess) under the Madeira name - which was a licensed sub-brand of Guild.

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