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Jacob

Double bass

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I have been asked by a retired friend in dire financial traits to try and obtain some info about his double bass - origin and possible resale value. Unfortunately I have very little knowledge of basses, so any help will be appreciated.

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I am 90% certain this is a bass and not a viola, it resembles a cello i once owned though, i would take it to a seedy bar that has jazz on saturdays and ask the bass player, he wont be able to give you a country, but try asking him what he might give you for it then multiply that figure to your hearts content, jacob. :)

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I'm not a bass person, but my 14 yr. old son is a bass player. The outside/double linings are an interesting feature that I saw on a bass a couple of weeks ago. No clue on the maker or value.

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Yep. Either of those places would be able and willing. Ken Smith is pretty knowledgeable, and Jeff Bollbach, Arnold Schnitzer, and others at Talkbass are very helpful. It's like a Maestronet for bassists, bass-builders and bass-repair people. They were very helpful when I was building my first (only, so far) bass. I specifically woudl recommend the set-up and repair forum.

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From my very limited experience (I've had one old bass put back together recently), I'm pretty sure that the outside linings point to German construction. The button (if that's what you can call the top of the back on these gamba forms) is not what I've seen on Tyrolian instruments, so I would be inclined to guess more northern. But on violins, that fancy purfling is more a Bohemian trait, right? So...??? Anyway I think late 1800s is pretty safe, and older basses are rare. Because basses have a hard life (living proof of the adage "the bigger you are, the harder you fall"), the cracks are not unexpected and won't kill the value. The problem (and I'm likely to get in trouble here) is that many folks who work on basses don't have great skill when it comes to touching up cracks. If the bass were solid on the inside and you, Jacob, agreed to try and make the top pretty, I think that could easily be a $5K to $10K instrument in the US.

Richard

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From my very limited experience (I've had one old bass put back together recently), I'm pretty sure that the outside linings point to German construction. The button (if that's what you can call the top of the back on these gamba forms) is not what I've seen on Tyrolian instruments, so I would be inclined to guess more northern. But on violins, that fancy purfling is more a Bohemian trait, right? So...??? Anyway I think late 1800s is pretty safe, and older basses are rare. Because basses have a hard life (living proof of the adage "the bigger you are, the harder you fall"), the cracks are not unexpected and won't kill the value. The problem (and I'm likely to get in trouble here) is that many folks who work on basses don't have great skill when it comes to touching up cracks. If the bass were solid on the inside and you, Jacob, agreed to try and make the top pretty, I think that could easily be a $5K to $10K instrument in the US.

Richard

Many thanks for the helpful replies. I'm definitely not lining up to work on the instrument - it will have to go as is.

I'll get it onto the two sites mentioned - thanks again!

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