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gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 3
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:37 am:   Edit Post

I have a gorgeous 5 string Alembic Europa from 1989 or 1990 (can't remember). It's in great condition. I make almost all my living playing classical upright. The bass has been in the closet for most of its life. I'm in need of another bass bow and have decided to downgrade on my electric bass. What would be a fair price for this?
Europa
gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 4
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:41 am:   Edit Post

More pics
gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 5
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:43 am:   Edit Post

Serial #
gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 6
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:45 am:   Edit Post

More pics
gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 7
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:48 am:   Edit Post

More pics
gil
New
Username: gil

Post Number: 8
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 6:50 am:   Edit Post

More pics
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 2697
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 8:44 pm:   Edit Post

Well, this one could be more complicated. The electronics are custom, certainly not vanilla Europa. It looks like you might have four knobs and two switches. It could be signature or anniversary electronics and an odd control layout, or it could be something else. Are you the original owner? If so, do you have the build sheet that came with the bass? You might also post the serial number in the request forum and Alembic might be able to look up and post the specifics of the build. From the back of the bass, it would appear that you have LEDs from the battery compartment. I would also guess that the hardware has been chromed from the way it appears in the photos. It's clear that the top is a flamed maple, but the stain makes it hard to be certain about the wood for the body (maybe ash from the little grain I see in the last pic) or neck stringers (probably purpleheart, but maybe walnut or vermillion).

The serial number looks like it starts out "90C...", an indication that Alembic classified the bass as a custom build rather than a Europa. You're probably at least $3K and possibly $4K depending on the buyer and how long you're willing to wait to make a sale. Hard to say for sure without knowing the build details. It is in the best interest of both you and the buyer to confirm the build details. No one wants a surprise in a $3-4K transaction.

-bob
gil
Junior
Username: gil

Post Number: 12
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 9:37 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Bob. Where is the request forum? The serial # is: 90C 6186 USA
hifiguy
Senior Member
Username: hifiguy

Post Number: 408
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 - 10:50 pm:   Edit Post

It's on the Club's front page under "Owning An Alembic." It may take Mica a while to get and post the details but a bass that recent should be in the Alembic archives.

Bob is right - that is _definitely_ not a garden variety Europa and is absolutely a custom with that s/n prefix but it sure is gorgeous. I am now suffering from severe GAS pains.
keith_h
Senior Member
Username: keith_h

Post Number: 1982
Registered: 2-2005
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 5:06 am:   Edit Post

A simple question is what do each of the controls do?

This would go a long way to determine what you have for electronics. I assume one of the switches controls LED's.

Keith
gil
Junior
Username: gil

Post Number: 14
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 7:35 am:   Edit Post

Yes Keith, one of the switches is LED's. I was never sure what the other two were. One is for the neck pickup and the other for the bridge pickup. In one position the bass has more presence, more brilliance and possibly louder. I'm not sure if in that position it is a boost or that the other position is a filter. My guess is the latter.

The controls is simpler: pan, volume, tone, tone.

~ Gil
keith_h
Senior Member
Username: keith_h

Post Number: 1984
Registered: 2-2005
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 9:32 am:   Edit Post

Sounds like Signature electronics to me. The two switches would be Q-switches. These boost the frequency where the filter (tone) control is set by 9db (?) if they are two position. This would be considered an upgrade from standard Europa controls.

Keith
eligilam
Senior Member
Username: eligilam

Post Number: 421
Registered: 2-2006
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 12:07 pm:   Edit Post

The pics almost make the fretboard look like rosewood...
gil
Junior
Username: gil

Post Number: 15
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 12:08 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks Keith.
bsee
Senior Member
Username: bsee

Post Number: 2698
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 1:18 pm:   Edit Post

Gil,

If you have time to plug it in, the LED switch is obvious. With the other two switches, "off" is usually in the up position and down is "on". Your two "tone" controls are most likely low-pass filters, one for each pickup. The switches are what we call "Q" switches, and they will provide a small boost centered on the knuckle frequency of the filter, wherever you have it. One easy way to demonstrate this and confirm what goes with what is to turn the switches on and max the volume. Push the balance all the way in one direction and play a note. Then spin each of the filter controls in turn. One of them won't seem to do anything and the other will make a wah-wah like effect. That filter goes with the pickup that is currently active. Flip one of the switches, and if the wah-wah goes away, that switch goes with that filter. Reverse the pan control and the other switch and filter should now be active.

It does seem likely that these are signature electronics and LEDs. I have a bass with similar electronics, but a different body, scale length and only four strings. I wouldn't sell mine for under $3500, maybe as low as $3K if I were desperate for cash. Yours should be worth a few hundred more to the right buyer.
gil
Junior
Username: gil

Post Number: 16
Registered: 3-2014
Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2014 - 6:55 am:   Edit Post

Thanks everyone for your input ... much appreciated. bsee, sorry to not reply earlier, I've been too busy to even plug it in. The bass sounds great. I already knew which switch belongs to which pickup, I just never knew until now what they are, as in filter or boost ... thanks for clarifying that for me.
I haven't heard yet from Mica, but it does seem like it's got signature electronics. I really love everything about this bass, especially how it sings, and am going to hate letting it go -- it just doesn't get much playtime these days. Ironically, just as I decided to go through with listing it for sale I got offered an electric bass gig.
mtjam
Intermediate Member
Username: mtjam

Post Number: 163
Registered: 11-2011
Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2014 - 7:34 am:   Edit Post

Nice bass! Interesting that it appears to have two different cavity covers: one plastic and one brass. I like it!
jazzyvee
Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 3992
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Saturday, May 03, 2014 - 7:47 am:   Edit Post

Gil, it's another great looking Europa. I think If i was a rich man I'd probably buy every Europa and Elan bass that came up for sale. They are superb instruments and yours is no different. It looks like it has an Elan neck just like one of mine, although yours is inverted which must be a stretch to the tuner pegs. You also have the neck pickup right on the truss rod cover which must be giving you a lovely warm bottom end.

Just had another look and it seems like the bass is all white woods, the top maybe flame maple and the body maple or some other light wood. Could the fretboard be madagascar ebony with that striping in it I wonder?


All the best if you carry on with the sale.
Jazzyvee

(Message edited by jazzyvee on May 03, 2014)
zomnius
Junior
Username: zomnius

Post Number: 12
Registered: 9-2013
Posted on Sunday, June 08, 2014 - 11:21 am:   Edit Post

like the headstock!!
charles_holmes
Advanced Member
Username: charles_holmes

Post Number: 330
Registered: 3-2009
Posted on Sunday, June 08, 2014 - 8:08 pm:   Edit Post

Dang it! If it was a series I'd pull the trigger because that is what I'm in the market for. It is a very lovely bass indeed!!!!
bassfingers
Advanced Member
Username: bassfingers

Post Number: 317
Registered: 11-2005
Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2014 - 4:06 pm:   Edit Post

This looks like Mike Porcaro's bass.
hammer
Senior Member
Username: hammer

Post Number: 495
Registered: 9-2009
Posted on Thursday, June 12, 2014 - 7:21 am:   Edit Post

Off the topic a bit, but when I was young I spent a few years growing up with the Porcaro brothers having lived next door to the family. Nice people. Such a shame that both Mike and his brother were hit with diseases that did or will shorten their lives.
hammer
Senior Member
Username: hammer

Post Number: 535
Registered: 9-2009
Posted on Friday, July 11, 2014 - 7:31 am:   Edit Post

Does anyone know if this bass was sold. Gil's profile is gone so there's no way to contact him other than through the board. I did communicate with him at one point but lost his email address.

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