My (not) matching pair of '53 precisions



I've been a habitual lurker on this board for a while now but have only got round to registering and posting pics of my fantastic basses.

The first one was a result of buying, trying and then selling well over 50 basses before realising that my ideal bass did not exist. I decided to take the best parts of the best basses I had owned and put them into and outrageous, unforgetable bass.

The body is mahogany. I chose this as both my Stingray 30th Anniversary and Thunderbird had mahogany bodies and feld this yielded the most growl for what i was looking for.

The neck is Wenge. My Warwick thumb NT5 had this as its neck wood. It seemed the best choice as it allowed me to slide around on it and required no finish. I also specified jazz width at the nut.

Ebony Fretboard. I chose this based on my Bass Collection SB565, and like the BC i chose to have the front markers left off.

Gotoh machines exactly like my Fenders & Musicman basses

Gotoh 201 bridge like my Modulus Flea bass

SD single coil quarter pounder for pure 'grunt'

the design itself was based on my own CIJ Fender '51 reissue which I loved and was overall the best bass I ever owned but couldn't get along with the lack of contour. This is why I went for the '53 shape.

The gold sparkle body, gold hardware, frets and Optima strings were just for the hell of it - that and I'm a show off  :guitarplayer2:

Anyway, here are some pics:




For the second bass, I wanted something more authentic. I decided to go for another single coil precision. By the time I had decided on the spec, it was going to be modelled after a 1957 pre-facelift model

Specs are:

Swamp ash body finished in blonde

Maple neck/fretboard with vintage size frets and vintage satin varnish

Gotoh resolite lightweight, reverse action machineheads

Jason Lollar vintage '51 pickup

CTS 250k pots, vintage wiring, paper-in-oil cap

gotoh 201 bridge cunningly hidden underneath the chrome cover.

I went with my favourite Optima strings but the newer chrome ones





After I built it, i got myself a vintage style single screw 'tugbar' purely in keeping with the original.

2 basses based on the same design - 2 very different sounds.

the gold one is very clean and modern sounding whereas the vintage one is growly, full-on and totally in your face but in a nice way. Its also just screaming to be played through a tube amp.

i couldn't be happier with them. they are everything I hoped I'd get and more.  :hello2: :hello2:

Now I can start planning my third one - surely not another '53?  :glasses9:

Anyway, enjoy the pics and feel free to ask any questions.


I actually really like the gold one...not at all my style, but I think it looks great.
That red 8 string is a 12 string    :toothy10:

Its a Carlo Robelli - Galveston/Dean/etc same factory.

I have to admit that I don't actually like gold normally but for some reason was drawn to it when picking the colour of that bass. Still loving it, great when the lights are shining on it

The original precision design has always been my favourite. I carved the headstock of my first ever bass to look like the tele one. I've had 2 '51 reissues but they weren't exactly what i wanted.

I've had so many 5 and 6 string basses with more controls than the Hubble space telescope that I wanted something that sounded good without having to rely on fancy electronics.

I'm going to be modifying the electronics in both basses:

I have a Bartolini 2.1 AP harness to go into the gold one to give me a 2 band EQ.  Simple bass and treble.  The blonde one is going the opposite way: I'm going to wire the pickup directly to the jack as I have never used the volume or tone controls since I built it.