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Who knows something about upright basses?


I've been playing a bit recently and decided I'd buy one - but it's much harder than buying a guitar. I hate to buy one without being able to play it, but my opportunities are limited, especially within my price range. Stores around here, which are already limited, cater to the RPO and Eastman students - solid, carved basses.


I'm looking for something laminated, of course, in the $800-$1000 range.


I've played a handful of electric uprights, but I'd really prefer an acoustic model.


My ideal is some sort of "mini" bass, that works as an acoustic, but isn't as big. Electric options are appreciated.


Something like these, really...


http://www.gelbass.com/bass/bass4RN.html (not necessarily with the removable neck)




I won't be playing in an orchestra, and I'll probably never even use a bow. Rock, country, that sort of stuff. I played guitar, bass, and drums for a cover of "Santa Baby" last week.


There's probably a better forum, but I've been browsing TalkBass and get the feeling that if I'm not ready to spend at least $3000, they don't care to help me.

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In 2002 I bought a new Engelhardt EC-1. It was a good bass but the color was ugly as sin. It was orange and red sunburst. The endpin rattled, I complained, they sent me a new one, it rattled too. I fixed it in 5 minutes and told the factory what I did, and they basically told me to pound sand.


A year later I bought a 1940 Kay M-1W for $1000. The neck was popping loose, which I fixed. The neck had been stripped and I airbrushed it to look original. It's my baby.




A friend recently ordered a new Engelhardt EC-1 and it's been about 6 weeks since they took her money. No clue if it's been shipped yet.


In spite of my marginal exp with Engelhardt, I will still recommend them. US made, not expensive, and I think they have a more traditional finish now. Old Kays are better but not $3000 better.


PS, Engelhardt IS Kay.... Two guys named Engelhardt and Link, two former Kay employees, bought the remains of the Kay bass and cello line in 1969 when they closed.


Sometimes an Engelhardt 1/4 bass comes available on the serious cheap, a few hundred bucks. One might be worth a look if you're looking for something compact.


I don't bother going to talkbass anymore. Draw your own conclusions.

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I'm not terribly concerned about portability - it's more of a space issue inside that makes me want something smaller.


I'll really only be using it for my own recording sessions and occasionally for my friends' sessions. There's a group of us who play on each others' recordings frequently, and there's really only one bassist in the group at the moment. He's great, but not always available.


Engelhardt looks good, from what I've seen. I really like the one I "borrowed" last week, but it wasn't marked so I didn't know what it was.



I'd prefer a nice old Kay or Epiphone, obviously, but they aren't in my price range. My friend told me about a store around here that does a rent-to-own. It's something like $100 every three months, and after two years you can pay it off and keep it, or give it back. It works out to about $1000, and it's good enough that they're recommended by the head of our orchestra.

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Search out Bluegrass venues. While most have been well cared for, many upright basses on this circuit would benefit from time in KSDADDY's garage. I think this is where old basses go to gasp their last thump. Most of the ugly ones have good tone and projection, they just look like they've been on the road for years strapped to the top of a '49 DeSoto.


You might find one with a "For Sale" sign on it.

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