Up for sale, a 1963 Fender Jazz Bass in exceptional condition and in perfect working order. Produced late in '63 and a true Pre-CBS instrument, this bass is 100% original with the exception of a professional body-only nitro lacquer refinish in the original sunburst. This is one of the nicest and most complete vintage Jazz Basses we've ever had the pleasure of offering for sale, featuring the original blonde tolex hardshell case, original chrome "ashtray" covers, and the original hangtag with matching serial number!
The tone and feel of this bass is everything you expect from a Jazz Bass produced in Fender's golden era, with a very resonant body that delivers a clear and even sound across all of the strings. Weighing in at 8lbs 14oz "fully clothed" with the original chrome covers, this bass has just enough heft to sustain very well and deliver a strong, fundamental attack, while still balancing well on a strap and feeling easy on the back. Striking a note on the E string causes the entire instrument to vibrate and resonate, and this is a particularly soulful and rich sounding Jazz Bass. The pickups cover a wide sonic range, with growl, complexity and that slightly nasally upper midrange cut that defines a Jazz Bass bridge pickup, paired with the warmth and thump that balances things out at the neck position. Both original black bobbin single coil pickups are intact with their original windings, reading a strong 7.95k ohms in the neck position and 7.82k in the bridge. Professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar, this Jazz Bass has comfortable action and a fresh set of 45-100 roundwound strings.
The one-piece maple neck has the traditional, slender Jazz Bass "A" 1 1/2" nut width, and the original smooth gloss nitro lacquer is largely intact on the profile, with only the faintest wear down to the bare maple behind frets 3-5. In terms of depth, this profile is indicative of the fuller, rounder C shape Fender was using in '63, with generous shoulders and a shape that grows deeper as you move into the higher registers of the fretboard, filling the palm by the time you reach fret 10. The profile has surprising depth and roundness even at the first fret! The bass features its original slender fretwire with well rounded crowns and plenty of life left, currently showing only the faintest wear on frets 1-4 beneath the A and D strings, with virtually no wear further up the fretboard. The truss rod nut is also flush with the heel of the neck, turning well and responding as it should. The Brazilian rosewood veneer fretboard is a particularly nice cut as well, with a very dark and tight grain that responds tonally in a very similar way to ebony, with a very articulate note attack. On the headstock, the original clover button reverse tuning gears are intact, and turn extremely smoothly with particularly clean plating. The original Jazz Bass waterslide decal is present and in flawless condition.
All of the electronics work as they should, and the original Stackpole pots are intact, dating to the 29th week of 1963. All of the original hardware is present as well, including the stock knobs, finger rest, and chrome bridge base with stock saddles. Both the control plate and the original pickup covers have extremely clean chrome plating, and the original nitrate tortoise pickguard is quite saturated and swirly. There is a tiny bit of wear on the pickguard around the pickup cover, where some guard shrinkage was alleviated by gently opening up the route around the pickup in the guard only on a couple edges. Again, just the route in the pickguard was slightly enlarged, and the body routes are untouched and original. Present in the neck pocket, the original "OK" quality control stamp is still intact, along with remnants of the original "paint stick" markings from when the body was hung in the factory to receive its first sunburst finish. The neck heel has its original bold November 1963 date stamp, also noting the "A" nut width.
The original alder body is in excellent shape, and great care was taken to retain the integrity of the original body contours when the instrument was stripped prior to refinishing. There's a nice roundness to the body horns and belly contour, and the neck pocket is nice and tight. The nitro lacquer finish is glossy and vibrant, with smooth transitions between the layers of the three-tone burst. Cosmetically, this bass is in truly fantastic shape, with barely a scratch on the body and a remarkably clean original nitro lacquer finish on the neck that shows no lacquer checking and only a light ambering of the clear coat. This is a beautiful and largely original Pre-CBS Fender Jazz Bass, and an exceptional piece for use on stage and in the studio.
The original blonde hardshell case is included and in great shape. All original latches are intact and working, the stock handle is clean, and the black leather ends are mostly intact. The orange plush interior is quite clean too, and the case pocket is present with its stock leather tab.