Sunday, July 3, 2011

1984 Fender JV ’62 Re-issue Jazz Bass


By now you probably know about my fascination with Japanese Fender instruments, and this is a rare one. It is a 1984 ’62 re-issue Jazz Bass with a JV-prefix serial number. It is one of the only ones I have ever seen, and it seems like JV Precision Basses outnumber Jazz basses by about 20 to 1. This one is a model JB62-60, and it still has the 60 sticker on the headstock, meaning that this bass originally sold for 60,000 Yen.

This one is finished in its original 3-tone sunburst, and it is in very good condition considering that it is 27 years old. The rosewood fretboard and frets show very little wear, and the truss rod still turns easily.

The hardware is original too, with the serrated bridge saddles and the non-reverse tuners that later JV basses were equipped with. When I bought it, the bass came with the original leatherette Fender gig bag, which you never see with these.

But, despite its rarity and the collectability of JV instruments, this one is an uncollectible outcast. How come?

Well, that is because when I got this bass it had no electronics in it, and the original pickups and pots were long gone. I put it right (more than right), and it sounds great, but it is not an untouched classic anymore.

I installed Fender USA vintage pickups with CTS pots, an Orange drop capacitor and a Switchcraft output jack. This is all strung together using Belden Silver Coated Copper Wire (with cloth covering) and WBT silver solder. It was the least I could do.

It plays well, and sounds good. It has a bright and cranky tone with the new roundwounds I put on it, but it does not really work for me. Over the years I have become more comfortable with the fatter Precision and Stingray bass necks, and a skinny Jazz neck feels alien to me now.

This one will be going up for sale soon, so let me know if you are interested.


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