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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
There's probably a couple guys here who remember that Greco bass that came up for $200 on Kijiji over the xmas holiday, I almost had a heart attack when I saw that advert, the guy said he had 700 hits on his ad and dozens of calls on it, the first night.

Anyhow if you really want to get your hands on a guitar, you can always try to track it down and make the guy an offer he can't refuse, that's what I did.

The good news first, here she is (made one year only), 1975 Greco TVB600 Bass all original







Greco 1975 catalog



That's the end of the good news except that the original Maxon pickups (10.2K ceramic neck and 6.8K alnico bridge) sound really good to me, really punchy and quite articulate, way more so than my 1981 Maxon bass pups in another guitar.

The body is Honduras and it's Norlin 70's pancake construction and rock solid.

It's a set neck, Honduras and a literal work of art - it's 33.75" scale, a really nice slim tapering slight V shape, Indian rosewood board.

The bad news and the reason I posted this forum, it's needs a (Canadian)historic makeover(tm) in the worst way, and I'm already half way through doing just that.

Issues;

The bridge is a copy of one Gibson made and used for less than a year in the 60's and it's completely caved in to the point the middle strings are 1/4" low and the posts are slanted forward, it's not usable even though I've bent it back into shape in a machinist vise.

The frets are finished - down to .024" and less (divots) so they have to go, this thing has been played, the board need surfacing.

There are lots of small dents and tons of scratches, the finish is polyester so invisible touch up isn't an option.

The pickup rings are cracked/flimsy and generally shot.

While the pups are near mint the rest of the original electrics have to go, it needs new pots, caps, switch, jack.

I've already stripped it to bare wood, installed new pearl dots, I did a refret/level/crown, I fixed every dent and issue in the wood and sanded the whole thing back to near mint.

Right now it's been sealed up with clear lacquer to the point the grain is almost completely filled, it's now ready for colour, pics to follow.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
It needed a solid colour to be perfect, there were quite a few marks on it and it needed quite a few repairs, the bridge post holes were elongated, just too much stuff to cover with a clear finish.

Cherry would have been okay but again to be perfect I would have had to shade it to the point that the grain would have been almost obscured, so if it's going to be solid it might as well be gold.

 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks, I made a Tortise pick guard and a set of bakelite pick up rings, so those problems are solved.

The original tuners are mint and good quality, they still work perfectly so they'll get cleaned/polished up and go back on.

The bridge post holes are filled and there's no sign of them now, I've ordered a new bridge, Hipshot High Mass Bass Bridge



 

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Jim you're killing me with that color dude. Amazing. When we chatted about a year ago when you did that dog hair finish I've always wanted to come and say hi. See your shop. Now I've got to go. That bass will be spectacular.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Were you able to keep the degas logo?
El Degas on the mind huh... pretty close to Greco though

On a lot of these Japanese guitars it's not an inlay but wafer thin pearl logo set right on the painted headstock face, and buried in the clear coat, that was the case with this guitar.

With a proper refinish I couldn't save the face of the headstock on this one, it had to be stripped to bare wood and removing the clear polyester meant the logo's got vaporized.

It actually didn't have a veneer on the headstock from the factory, the mahogany face was painted black, so I took the opportunity to strengthen the headstock by veneering it in Holly then painting that in black lacquer, and I have new pearl logo's.

There's a woman in Moscow who does really good work in mother of pearl, you can buy from her direct or on ebay (ChiefMOP), I sent her a photo of my headstock and asked her to make repro's in mother of pearl 0.1mm thick, which like the original I'm burying in clear lacquer.

I'll post close ups of the guitar when I get it finished, won't be long now



 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I wet sanded this a couple weeks ago but haven't had the chance to get going on assembly until this weekend.

It's going back together now... I found a Schaller bridge that works better for this guitar, it's a bit tricky because the guitar was originally built for a knock-off Gibson bass tune-o-matic bridge that was used on EB bass' for two years, failed and was replaced with the 3 point bridge, so things are tight and this one measured out the best.

Tuners are original and are absolute perfect, really good quality and work very well.

The board was dressed and refretted, real pearl dots installed, it already had worn edges so a little roll before the frets went in and the neck feels really worn in, wet sanded nitro to me is the best. it should be nice to play.





 

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The bridge is a copy of one Gibson made and used for less than a year in the 60's
Negatory - ALL Gibsons used this bridge style ("the 2 point") from about late 67 through 73. A great improvement over the older 'bar bridge' and superseded by the '3 point' which was the standard Gibson bass bridge (with a few exceptions) until very recently. The original 2 points may have had some shortcomings, but your issue isn't one of them (not that I think you said that; just saying generally that wasn't a very good copy of that bridge or it was abused in it's history; Greco usually did better ).

I love Gibson basses (have 4). Seeing as a 59-61 (Jr body shape) EBO is one of my dream bases; you're killing me with the bridge choice (but it is your bass after all, and not a Gibson).

The tuners were a good choice (Gibson used those for a period) but may be on the heavy side and cause some neck dive. Standard clovers may have been better in that regard. The originals had banjo tuners like Firebirds, which is and should be a non-starter for a bass except in the case of extreme anal retention when restoring an actual vintage Gibson.

Good luck; looks to be going well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Original Maxon pups going back in.



The rest of the bits, new CTS 500K pots and .1uf Russian PIO caps (same value as originals), new switch, new bakelite pup rings and celluloid tortise guard, original knobs, switch tip and poker chip

Ready for solder

 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
ahhhhhh I’m killing everybody with this one,

To the Gibson bass fans, sorry about the bridge a 3 point may have been a better choice, the Schaller does the math so perfectly and is so well made that I’m blind to the rest of it.

Scale length is 33 1/2” so I think that’s long scale, I may build myself one of these in a shorter scale like 31” when I get a chance it would be a good project, I really like the feel of this one and a bit shorter would be even better.
 
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