Fender Jazz Bass Solid Body Electric Bass Guitar (1966)

Fender  Jazz Bass Solid Body Electric Bass Guitar  (1966)
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Item # 12205
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Fender Jazz Bass Model Solid Body Electric Bass Guitar (1966), made in Fullerton, California, serial # 145102, Candy Apple Red lacquer finish, alder body, maple neck with rosewood fingerboard, original black tolex hard shell case.

This is a truly superb example of an early-CBS era custom color Fender Jazz Bass, lightly played but all original (with an extra original oddity!) and overall very well preserved. Candy Apple Red was one of Fender's most popular 1960s custom colors, and looking at this bass it's easy to see why. The deep but bold metallic red was a real California hot rod hue, and with the Jazz Bass' chrome accents makes this instrument look fast just sitting still! While C.A.R. is far from the rarest of these player/dealer ordered finishes, all are much scarcer than the standard sunburst and many were worn down heavily and/or striped to "hippie wood" in the '70s when that was considered the cool thing to do.

This bass features the typical transitional features seen in late '65 and early '66, just over a year after CBS bought the Fender company. The most notable change from Pre-CBS specs is the pearl dot-inlaid rosewood fingerboard, now with the white binding that appeared by the end of 1965. This neck is dated to May '66 on the heel, fabricated not long before pearloid block markers would be added and dots banished for a couple of decades. Other period features include the transition gold logo decal on the matching red headstock, the bright white ABS plastic pickguard and the Fender-made "egg" button chrome-plated tuners specific to Jazz Basses of this era. The Candy Apple Red lacquer finish is applied over a gold undercoat, typical of 1966. The visible pots are the 12th week of 1966.

This is a very fine player and all-around super sharp looking bass, with a somewhat more midrangey tone than some '66s, which can be very bright. This bass appears only very lightly used over the past 55 years and it sounds like a cliche, but they really don't turn up like this much anymore, especially custom color basses this clean.
Overall length is 46 1/2 in. (118.1 cm.), 14 in. (35.6 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 5/8 in. (4.1 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 34 in. (864 mm.). Width of nut is 1 1/2 in. (38 mm.).

This is a really superbly preserved and striking looking nearly 58 year old Jazz Bass, finished in one of Fender's boldest metallic paint jobs with the bright white 3-layer pickguard and matching red headstock. It remains all original and complete showing just minor wear overall. The oddity mentioned above is this bass was fitted with one of Fender's quirkier accessories, the "Go-Around Waist Belt". This was offered in the mid-60s purportedly allowing the player to dispense with a conventional shoulder strap. It is quite rare; we have only seen a few in the last 40+ years. Fitting this required drilling two small eye bolts into the back of the guitar, and these are present on this bass, with a slightly discolored ring around them from the rubber grommet fitted around them.

Apart from this the body finish has some very light checking and scattered small dings, chips, dents and handling marks. The top has only some tiny dings and chips, notably by the neck pocked and tailpiece cover. The body edges have a few dinks and rub marks. The back is free of the typical belt buckle wear showing some dings, dents and scuff marks along with the deeper screw bites from the waist belt fitting.

The vibrant Candy Apple red finish is still bright and strong with virtually no fade to the color. There are some small chips to the headstock edges, while the back of the neck has hardly any wear. The fingerboard and original frets also show minimal wear, we would assume this bass had flatwound strings fitted most of its existence.

The all original and complete hardware is quite clean overall; the chrome still shines like a 66 Corvette. The pickguard has not shrunken much at all and has only some light scuffing and a couple of tiny marks from truss rod adjustment. This bass shows no repairs or alterations beyond the when-new addition of the belt hooks on the back. It simply looks super well cared for, only played lightly since it shipped out of Fullerton in mid-1966. It lives in the original black Tolex HSC, retaining the original Waist Belt (with one of the dog clips broken) and a partial Wabash-branded skinny strap in the pocket. Overall Excellent Condition.