Double basses and bows for sale:
20th century European 3/4 £1,000
currently have a choice of two similar instruments. They are both all
solid wood flat back construction but set up quite differently -one
with an adjustable bridge and Obligato strings; the other with a higher
action and gut strings. These instruments are very good value for money
and are perfect as an entry into the world of double bass or as an
upgrade from a laminate (plywood) or cheap Chinese instrument. They are
about 30-40 years old but both in good 'gigging' condition with no
major issues or work needed.
Lowendahl, Dresden 1892 £5500
is an absolutely classic Dresden bass and it sounds superb. It is of
viol outline with a flat back. The spruce front is of a medium and very
even, straight grain and the back and ribs are of maple showing some
interesting figure on the back. The back centre joint has been remade with an ebony strip inserted -a high quality and aesetically pleasing restoration technique. It has the original label inside featuring the
Lowendahl trade mark and has a pencil inscription with initials and the
date of manufacture.
It was originally built for export from Germany and fitted up as a
three string bass -still the accepted set up in British orchestras at
that time (though judging from the pegbox and neck width it could equally well have been set up as a four stringer for continental use). It was carefully converted to four strings many many years ago
-probably in the early 20th century.
not unusual with these instruments the combination of the neck angle
and small 'step' (the gap between the bottom of the fingerboard and the
belly at the neck foot) meant that it was not possible to fit a
correctly sized bridge. This has now been remedied with a wedge under
the fingerboard, neck reshaping and a high saddle to compensate for the
resultant extra tension. It also has a new 'AAA' grade ebony
fingerboard, a new bridge and a quality endpin fitted and is now a
wonderful instrument both bowed and
pizzicato. It also comes with an optional wooden endpin.
The string length is on the long side compared to a modern 3/4
instrument but it is increadibly easy to play and quite possibly that
extra inch on the string length helps to enrich and deepen the tone...
String length 108.5cm (42 3/4")
Upper bout 54cm
Lower bout 66cm
Max rib depth 20cm
Saxon mid 19th Century £4200 (reduced from £4500)
I've just finished restoring this bass and it's a corker!
It is a large yet light instrument that resonates extremely well and has a powerful and warm tone.
The bass has undergone a complete restoration over a number of years
which included replacing many old repairs, a new bass bar, a wedge
under the fingerboard, neck reshaping, pegbox repairs, stripping and
re-varnishing with a high quality oil varnish (the original varnish had
been removed at some point in the past) and a thorough set up including
new saddle, nut, soundpost, bridge, tailpiece, endpin and tailwire.
Surprisingly for a bass of this size the string length is a very manageable 108cm.
String length 108cm (42 1/4")
Upper bout 53cm
Lower bout 70cm
Max rib depth 22cm
20th century European 5 string £6,500
are in the market for a five string bass then this should be at the top
of your shopping list! It is wonderful sounding instrument with a truly
rich and even sonority. Whoever made this bass really knew what they
were doing as it looks stunning, is perfectly balanced tonally and
sings from the lowest to the highest note.
It is beautifully made with some lovely touches (such as the ebony
insert down the centre of the back) and has just undergone
comprehensive upgrading and improvement.
It has a very manageable string length and despite the generous rib depth is easy to play and doesn't feel at all cumbersome.
Recent work includes:
New AAA grade ebony fingerbooard, change of neck angle to get the
correct bridge height, neck reshape, new bridge, new endpin, new
tailpiece, new soundpost, new nut, new saddle, a new set of Evah
Pirazzi strings and to top it all (quite literally) a set of high quality German made Rubner tuners.
String length 105cm
Upper bout 51cm
Lower bout 67.5cm
Rib depth 22cm
century labelled 'Jacques Gand, Mirecourt' £12,500 ono
This is a
simply gorgeous instrument. It is of classic French 'Mirecourt' design
-violin outline with a carved back and deep ribs. This bass has a
really rich 'plummy' tone and as one would expect is made to the
highest standards. It features carefully selected wood, a lovely and
varnish and top quality fittings.
The bass is fitted with an E string extension currently sports a set of
Evah Pirazzi strings. I also have a brand new set of
Flexocore Deluxe strings so it is ready to go what ever style of music
you want to play on it!
This is a stunning orchestral instrument but
with Evah Pirazzi strings it also plays beautifully pizzicato and would
be equally at home in a jazz, folk or contemporary music environment.
String length: 106.5cm (just under 42")
Upper bout: 53cm
Lower bout: 66.5cm
Rib depth: 20.5cm
Mid 20th century European £SOLD
This is a lovely 3/4 size, carved back bass of at least 55 years of age (plenty of time for the wood to mature!).
It has just undergone extensive upgrading and overhaul. I had to open the bass to
attend to some repairs and at the same time I took the opportunity to
replace some older repairs, re-graduate the top and fit a new bass bar.
This bass has responded excellently to these upgrades and has now also been fitted with a new high quality bridge and endpin.
After a little tweaking of the (ebony) fingerboard and nut the bass is now playing beautifully and sounding great -the bass now really sings and has a good punchy tone. It. is currently fitted with a (recent) set of spirocore strings
If you are wondering what a bass bar is and what re-graduating might entail read on.....
The bass bar is a long brace that is glued to the inside of the belly
and runs under the bass foot of the bridge. This bass was made with an
integral bass bar (a common practice on older German/Czech instruments)
in which rather than being a seperate piece of wood the bar is formed
by simply not carving that portion of the wood away when hollowing out
the inside of the top. Removing this bar and replacing with a new one
of top quality spruce of better dimensions, shape and grain will
normally improve both the sound and response of an instrument as is the
case with this one.
Re-graduating involves measuring the thickness of the belly (it varies all over) and then removing wood by planing etc. (and very occasionally adding with a patch) to
achieve the ideal thicknesses for the belly to flex and respond to the
vibrations of the strings. There is no hard and fast rule for this as
it depends on the density and flexibility of the wood and also the
design of the bass and the profile of the arching -it is very much a
matter of careful judgement and experience. It is not uncommon for
basses to be made with somewhat haphazard thicknesses and quite often
they are left with considerably more wood than is ideal. Too much wood
(especially at the edges of the belly) can dampen response and reduce
volume and sometimes 'choke' the sound completely. By removing just the
right amount of wood a somewhat lifeless and uninspiring instrument can
really start to sing and even fine handmade instruments can often be improved.
String length 107cm
Upper bout 51cm
Lower bout 65cm
Rib depth 19cm
Budget basses £800-1500
I normally try to keep one or two cheaper basses in stock; these
are generally European solid wood instruments made in the last 40 years
or so. These are often instruments which have had fairly major work
carried out to improve their sound, projection and playablility.
Compared to buying a new instrument these basses are excellent value
and you can be assured that there will be no nasty surprises in store
if it has been through my workshop (unlike some new instruments I have
seen which need hundreds of pounds spending on them to bring them up to
an acceptable standard.....)
German/Czech 3/4 ealy 20th century £SOLD
This bass was most probably made in the region of what is now the
border between Germany and the Czech Republic (or Czechia as they now
wish to be known!). There were several important centres of string
instrument production in this area at the time (including Markneukirchen and Schonbach) which dated back several hundred years and maintained a strong tradition and skilled workforce.
This bass was made during the early years of the last century and is a
nice example of the instruments that were being made at the time. It
features a spruce front, two piece maple back, maple ribs and its
original maple neck. It has an ebony fingerboard and a quality bridge
fitted. The tuners, which would have originally been of the wooden peg
variety have been replaced (probably due to the originals breaking)
with quality brass tuners which are very much in keeping with the style of the instrument.
instrument was most recently used by a classical musician but it would
perfect for other styles of music -these basses are very popular for
jazz as they have a nice 'punchy' pizzicato sound and are of
a size that makes them very 'manageable'.
The bass is fully set up and ready to go!
String length 105cm (41 3/8")
Upper bout 50cm
Lower bout 64cm
Max rib depth 19.5cm
French model bass bow £299
W Seifert bass bow in good condition.
Travelbass is an what is commonly refered to as an electric upright
bass or EUB. This is a slightly misleading nominaclature as it is
amplified in the same way as a double bass (ie a third party pickup) to
allow the musician a range of options. It also has an acoustic, all be
it small, body constructed in a traditional way which gives an
unamplified sound far greater than solid body EUBs. These instruments
are hand made to order and can be customised to specific requirements
e.g. detachable neck for easy air transport and copying the neck
profile/dimensions/scale of your regular bass.
Model L bass
guitar From £1299
string bass guitar of exquisite design and construction. See here for more details.
Model 1 archtop
guitar From £2599
classic hand made to order. See here for more details.
Bass accessories etc:
Bass stand. Wooden, hand made to my own design. £38 (+£6 p&p) Currently sold out -contact me if you would like to order one.
Wooden endpins. To replace the extendable metal rod in your endpin.
Available in a range of woods and all common sizes. From £33 (+£3.50
Heavy duty rubber endpin tips. Supplied with heat mouldable plastic
compound to create the perfect fit on all endpins. £9 (+£2.80 p&p)
Bow sock (bag). The easiest and safest way to transport your bow!
£14.99 (+£1.50 p&p)
Transport wheels. A range of wheels are available with either a solid
or pneumatic tyre and optional brake. £25-45 (+£5 p&p)
Bass rosin. Pops Rosin -my favourite brand! £11 (+£2.80 p&p)
Bow quiver. Black leather model made by Glasser of New York. £32
Humidifier. Hangs down inside the bass through one of the 'f' holes to
help prevent damage to the wood caused from lack of humidity. £10.50
Wolf note eliminator . £6 (+£1 p&p)
As well as keeping one or more instruments as 'loan' instruments for
customers whilst their instrument is in the
workshop I also have equipment for hire:
I often have one or more basses available (though not
always as they are sometimes out as loan instruments during repairs).
Please contact me for more details.
Travelbass. EUB with detachable neck. Acoustic bodied instrument which
can be easily transported and fits into a standard size keyboard case
for touring or flying. Supplied with pickup.
Realist double bass pickup.
Underwood double bass pickup.
Polytone bass pickup.
Various amplifiers/speakers including:
Trace Elliot amp
Eden 1x10 speaker
Hartke speaker (1x10")
Flite speaker (1x12" + 1x5")
Phil Jones Flightcase combo