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FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Thoughts on this '55 P?

matryx81

Kansas

Jul 18th, 2017 09:42 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I am curious as to the thoughts of at least a couple of you on this bass. No, I have no affiliation. Were there skunk stripes on 55 Precision basses? Forgive me if so and I should know better; I think my knowledge on this stuff is not so hot.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/142448224264?ul_noapp=true

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Jul 19th, 2017 06:30 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Skunks on 55s...yes.

This particular bass has been the source of much interest, discussion and debate over the past number of years among many of the world's leading experts on 50s Fenders. The color, as you can well imagine, has been the source of intense scrutiny.

Unless I've missed some more recent analysis of this bass, from what I have read and understand, the instrument is generally considered to be legit. It is what it is.

Thanks for posting the ad. It's always fun revisiting this rare bird.

George

(This message was last edited by edmonstg at 08:31 AM, Jul 19th, 2017)

digiboy

New York City

Jul 19th, 2017 07:43 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Sure is a beauty but I got a question.

Don't know how significant this is but seems to me that a 55 with that kind of wear on the body would show at least some finish wear on the neck too. Normally I'd expect to see spots on a maple neck where the clear finish is worn down leaving darker grayish blotches that are noticeably duller. I see some darker areas but the finish has a uniform gloss to it. Was the neck refinished at some later date? Or maybe it was somehow waxed?

Does it matter?

Not to me at 45K. I couldn't go near it at a small fraction of that.

Still gorgeous, regardless. I know it wouldn't be historically correct but since it's apparently a one off anyway, if it had a matching headstock, I'd probably pass out in a swoon.

matryx81

Kansas

Jul 19th, 2017 08:01 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

George, I was especially interested on your thoughts. This was the first time I have seen this bass; I had no clue it had been discussed before.

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Jul 19th, 2017 08:19 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

81...I was not necessarily talking about this forum, although if memory serves it seems like we have tossed this bass around on the FDP at least once before, back many months ago when it first appeared for sale on eBay.

I was and am talking about the various places (electronically, guitar shows, the like) vintage Fender collectors, dealers, historians, fans, etc., hang out as a matter of routine.

I have a picture of a friend from New Orleans holding this same bass and it was a photo taken when he attended an international guitar show about eight or more years ago in San Diego or Dallas ( I don't remember which), where the bass was all the rage.

This was the same show in which the owner of the bass flew Clive Brown over from the UK to check on the authenticity of the red finish. It is the color of this bass, after all, that makes it so valuable on the vintage market.

Clive, some of us probably know, is one of the world's leading Fender restoration artists, refinishers, and an acknowledged leading expert on original Fender paint, especially from the 1950s.

Clive's opinion was that the paint is original. I believe this bass was made by Leo to show at NAMM the year the instrument was made.

George

matryx81

Kansas

Jul 19th, 2017 08:53 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

No sir, I did not mean specifically here. This is the first I have seen of this bass


iammr2
Contributing Member
**

Lower Slobovia

Pass me the onions..Yeah, the green ones
Jul 19th, 2017 09:30 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Is there any significance of the "1179" in the pickup cavity?

Bubbalou

USA

THE LOW END OF UPPER TEJAS
Jul 19th, 2017 03:33 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"on't know how significant this is but seems to me that a 55 with that kind of wear on the body would show at least some finish wear on the neck too. Normally I'd expect to see spots on a maple neck where the clear finish is worn down leaving darker grayish blotches that are noticeably duller. I see some darker areas but the finish has a uniform gloss to it. Was the neck refinished at some later date? Or maybe it was somehow waxed? "

That was what I was wondering when I was looking at it however I am nowhere near an expert like George on vintage basses. Guess anything is possible


uncle stack-knob
Contributing Member
**********
****

united kingdom

Jul 21st, 2017 11:12 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I just got through talking to Clive Brown about this bass.Indeed it has been discussed here before.
The bass was displayed along with several other 1955 basses at the NAMM show. A colour picture exists of the display,but was cropped and this one doesn't show;however,the original picture hangs on the wall of a Fender employees' office,and does include this bass alongside a shell pink,a lake placid blue, and a blonde with a black plate,and bassman amplifiers.
The bass was inspected by Clive Brown and dis-assembled by Clive in Aspen Pitmans office at Groove Tubes.The bass may have had a light overspray of clear lacquer on the neck only.
The undercoat and red finish are original.
The pickup without twine is original.
The number 1179 stamped into the body prior to the paint application is not a factory refin number,but a "special" number for the NAMM show.
The bass was sold when Clive inspected it,around 11 years back,and he was present at the point of that sale.
Hope that helps,

Stack-Knob



edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Jul 21st, 2017 03:29 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

YES indeed!

Thank you, Sir Uncle Stack Knob!!!

George

(This message was last edited by edmonstg at 05:29 PM, Jul 21st, 2017)

digiboy

New York City

Jul 21st, 2017 04:01 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"The bass may have had a light overspray of clear lacquer on the neck only."

Such a thing would not impact the value? I would've thought that the wear on the neck is roughly equivalent to the patina on an antique chair or a Tiffany lamp. As such it's best if it's left untouched.

Regardless, the bottom line is that the bass is worth whatever you can sell it for so...

Thanks for these posts! Great info, truly fascinating.

edmonstg

Newberg, Oregon

Fender...never say never.
Jul 22nd, 2017 06:25 AM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

digi...I understand your thoughts on the overspray and would add that I think the place in electric bass history this instrument enjoys is so strong it gets little or no negative marks (I would guess) from collectors and enthusiasts.

This, as you know, would be a special exception to what is normal in these cases. The industry standard is that overspray matters.

My 58 P has some overspray on the neck and body...otherwise, all original... and because of it, was greatly discounted when I bought it.

George

FDP Forum / Fender Bass Guitars and Bass Amps / Thoughts on this '55 P?




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