IBD (inherited bass day) Hagstrom

Discussion in 'The BASS Place' started by ReverendRevolver, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    My uncle was older than my mother. He passed away 11years and a few weeks ago. He was a bass player from the late 70s on. Then he was an alcoholic. As happens often, you don't get to keep the best gear while so much of what you are becomes defined by your ailment; his early bass, a Hagstrom, got pawned for cash and rescued by his parents often.
    When he passed, his daughter got a bass, his long term girlfriend got a bass, and my grandparents kept the Hagstrom.

    Cousin pawned hers. Grandma got it back and gave it to me to keep safe. It's at my mother's house. Second one (his gigging bass) was stolen.
    The Hagstrom, this short scale, damaged, swedish anomaly, is mi e since my grandfather passed away.

    This post is more about the Hagstrom and its weirdness/ repairing it than anything.
    20191017_222959.jpg
    The input jack was, I think, originally in a white "tunnel " that let you plug in with the jack parallel to the body. I think this because I googled and guessed.
    The plastic was melted at some point around d the jack. The jack was held in by blue rubbery gunk and an American flag sticker. There were wood screws installed at some point coming up almost through the plastic.
    20191017_223100.jpg
    It comes apart like this. Remove bridge and screws.
    20191017_223104.jpg
    The jack was very rough, but still functional.
    20191018_000839.jpg
    I took a divider out of a little organizer I have, and whittled the 2"×3" divider into this with a saw and files in a vice. This isn't the pretty side.
    20191018_001425.jpg
    There isn't a pretty side. I used a wire brush in a drill (dremel is broke) to get a bit more depth in the wood where the body wasn't originally made for the jack to be. Haven't gotten to really play with it, but the biggest hindrance to function is fixed.
    On the wood, I found writing
    20191017_223325.jpg
    A note about my uncle splitting with his future ex wife from'82. Unknown stuff from maybe original owner? And a note from John Sheets from Shaw Music, Heath Ohio from 1985. He went on to buy Shaw out, and Sheets and sons was the best local guitar store, until John sold it, then eventually left to work at Guitar Guys as a teacher. I scribbled my own stuff about fixing the area around jack in October 2019 after the picture, and closed it up.

    Not sure its grounded efficiently. It has a prong that touches the guts from the foil tape.

    20191019_111657.jpg
    Its rough. Neck has paint coming off. Necks shortish, and combined with the headstock shape reminds me a bit of a mustang bass. Nut may get replaced, it looks chipped under g string (insert joke here) . Never seen another Hagstrom. Never seen another wood bridge electric bass.
    Not a bass player. They're fun to mess with, and my kids got excited about this like they didn't for most other guitars. Looks maybe? It's an heirloom, and its been driving me nuts since August that it needed such an easy fix but wasn't getting used. So I fixed it. Next comes attempting to clean it up. My uncle boiled his strings.... I think I'll assume these already got that treatment and change em.

    Anyone seen these before?
     
  2. KCKC

    KCKC Tele-Afflicted

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    That looks cool!

    My first bass was a hagstrom! same shape and neck as yours but didn't have the "candy shell"! It had been through 2 or 3 other players in town before I received it! It had been completely ripped apart when it arrived. it ended up with a dimarzio humbucker in the bridge wire directly to the jack if I recall. Maybe there was a vol in there too.

    I loved it!

    enjoy!!

    KC
     
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  3. CK Dexter Haven

    CK Dexter Haven Friend of Leo's

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    ‘78-79 a guy at school had one in red that he played thru a SF Bassman w/ the 2x12 cab.
    Guitar player had a Fender Coronado and one of those
    “hide -a -head” 2x12 Silvertones.

    Drummer was on a 4 piece gold sparkle Ludwig kit.

    They were a ahead of their time but didn’t know it! Now that’s cool “alternative gear” then it was just used stuff, that you marked time w/ until you could get something better.
     
  4. unclearty

    unclearty Tele-Holic

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    I had one of those...in red...with black trim...bought new in 1968...great sounding bass...for the time.
     
  5. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    Real "oddball", isn't it?
    I knew a guy in college who had a Hagstrom eight-string bass. Worked real well when he played in a guitar, bass, drums trio.....not so well in a larger band.....just too much "mud". But, that wasn't the bass' fault. ;)
     
  6. GibbyTwin

    GibbyTwin Tele-Meister

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    I remember borrowing a Hagstrom in the 60s when I first switched to bass before I bought my Hofner. It seemed a pretty cool guitar then. I couldn't recall the model so I did a search on vintage Hagstrom basses and found it was a model H II B.

    711303_Hagstrom_HII_bass_fullfront_webb_250_400.jpg
    Wouldn't mind owning one today.
     
  7. Bassman8

    Bassman8 Tele-Meister

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    Cool stuff, OP, thanks. I didn't know there were basses with shells back then.
     
  8. ElJay370

    ElJay370 Tele-Holic

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    Never played a bass, but a buddy had a Hagstrom III guitar I enjoyed playing. Hags have a certain low budget charm and they’re great for driving big tube amps with cheap fuzz pedals. A bit lightly built for serious rock and roll, though. Lots of plastic. Every time I played it I felt like I might break it.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  9. Steve Holt

    Steve Holt Tele-Afflicted

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    Never seen one in person, but if it were me I would get it fixed up real nice and rock that thing. Keep it forever!

    Screenshot_20191021-125943_Chrome.jpg
     
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  10. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    the Hagstrom Bass is one of the coolest guitars I know. As I recall, our recently-departed well-loved and highly-regarded friend James Calvin Wilsey (aka Wicked Guitar) played one of those back in his SF punk days with The Avengers, before he jumped ship to team up with Chris Izaak and stun the world with his guitar playing.
     
  11. 68tele

    68tele Friend of Leo's

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    I have that same bass, in grey. I hardwired both pups to the output jack, as the electronics are crap and I'm lazy. Great shortscale thump - I use it for recording.
     
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  12. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    Cool!
    Randy Meisner of the Eagles had one like this (red)!
     
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  13. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    Notice the stress cracks in the plastic by the screws? The plastic thing was not super well aged, for sure. Most of the top shell is braced firmly against the wood, and it's just the exterior of the shell the has the cracks, but still isn't super pretty. Wood ages better, period. But other than the part right around the controls, it seems solid. But really odd. I could see where a guitar may feel less substantial though; any less wood and it gets questionable.
     
  14. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    Still haven't gotten to play with the electronics. Seeing how they're wired, I'm not sure I'm gonna like them much.

    Was your jack straight in or the plastic tunnel thing?
     
  15. 68tele

    68tele Friend of Leo's

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    It was Frankensteined when I got it - half the plastic shell was gone (by the jack and electronics) replaced with masonite. No plastic tunnel. It's hideous looking but sounds great.
     
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  16. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    That may be the coolest bass I have ever seen! Well worth the effort to make it playable again! Congrats!
     
  17. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    I think you should definitely keep it because it is a family heirloom and has sentimental value. If you can get it into reasonable playing condition, even better.
    If not, it would make a great piece of wall art that has a story to go with it.

    I have my Dad's old classical guitar made in Paracho, Mexico. It hangs on my wall and everytime I look at it I think of him. (He passed in '96). The body and
    neck got warped a little bit (as is pretty common) so the action is really high above about the 5th fret. It's still playable and I do pull it down and noodle on it
    once in awhile. But mainly it's a wall hanger with sentimental value.

    If I owned this bass I would probably just use something like a decent Squier P-Bass rather than rely on it. I could see messing with it
    for recording if it has an interesting tone, but that's about it. I don't think I'd trust it for live stuff, and given it's sentimental value why risk having it be stolen
    when you have it at a gig?
     
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  18. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Holic

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    Its definitely not going anywhere; having a bass in the house takes me closer to having it easy when I get people here to jam with again. I have all my guitar gear, a PA, a console steel, and now this bass. I need to snag the other speaker cab for my PA and a steel amp from my moms garage, then I just need to buy a bass amp and a cheap drum kit next year (why a cheap kit? Because my father has been sitting on a set of vintage Slingerlands for ages he'd sell for $50 and I'd just need hardware, a snare, and cymbals ;) ) gotta rewire my garage a bit, but I'm close to having a full practice setup in my house for the first time since high school.
    Also, itll stay in the family. I'm gonna soften it up a bit where the neck finish chipped, oil the tuners, play with the bridge adjustment, as limited as it is, and it's there for the kids if they're interested.
    I have no intention of being a gigging bass player at this point in my life. Only way that's ever happening again is if a much better guitarist than myself needs a psychobilly bass player and already owns a 3/4 scale upright I can use.

    Definitely a keeper.
     
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