(x) Series 1 1976 serial number 434... Log Out | Topics | Search
Moderators | Register | Edit Profile

Alembic Club » Owning an Alembic » Serial Number / History Requests » (x) Series 1 1976 serial number 434 « Previous Next »

Author Message
Username: jridel

Post Number: 1
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Thursday, April 03, 2014 - 5:31 am:   Edit Post

I think I got the details years ago but have lost them (doh!)
Can I get a build sheet for this bass ?

Bought it in Australia 10 years ago, been in the UK ever since and love it dearly.
Looking at sprucing her up a little so my other questions are :-
How much would a replacement set of pickups cost ? ( the old units are very scuffed from her previous life in Australia !)
Also the bass seems to have been exposed to a lot of direct sunlight (we don't get that much of it in England....) so the finish has become very orange coloured and the headstock laminates have bleached out.
Ideally I want to keep her vintage and retain her soul but wish I could lighten the orange tint just a little.
Otherwise, I really love this bass and is a 'keeper' along with my SC Deluxe, 63 Jazz, 76 Precision & my Ritter Roya.

Having owned a lot of basses, Alembic make the best & ultimately satisfying basses on the planet & I always keep coming back to them.

Senior Member
Username: jazzyvee

Post Number: 3932
Registered: 6-2002
Posted on Thursday, April 03, 2014 - 8:08 am:   Edit Post

Sounds a really interesting bass Jon, do you have any pictures showing the condition of the bass currently. That would help some experts here advise you on what to do.
I am aware that when the basses are new, there is a calibration process that Ron Wickersham does with the bass to make sure the pickups, hum canceller and the rest of the system is working at it's optimum. I don't know if that would still be a requirement for a replacement set of pickups. But a call/Email to Mica at alembic would clarify that.

Is it an oil finish or a varnish/polyester coating? It is normal for the finish to darken or change colour somewhat over time not necessarily due to direct sunlight exposure. With some of the older ones there can sometimes be checking in the finish. I would imagine to get rid of that colour cast would require a re-finish.

Username: jridel

Post Number: 2
Registered: 4-2014
Posted on Friday, April 04, 2014 - 10:06 am:   Edit Post

I have pictures but cant seem to get them the right file size to post.
It is a varnish, I would guess polyester and not much checking.
I will try to resize the pics so I can post them !!
Username: artswork99

Post Number: 1977
Registered: 7-2007
Posted on Friday, April 04, 2014 - 5:48 pm:   Edit Post

Jon, if you continue to have issues feel free to email them to me and I can re-size then post to the thread for you. Cheers, Art
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1732
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Thursday, April 10, 2014 - 7:14 pm:   Edit Post

I had a '78 Series I that had very severe checking and yellowing. I decided to go for a complete refinish and it ended up looking new. I really liked it. But, you can get it refinished with a tint added that approximates the aged look. But, I don't think you can adjust the current finish, it would need to be redone altogether.

Depending on the construction of the pickups, it could be that new ones might change the sound somewhat. I have a set of very early Series pickups in my Starfire that are rectangular shells with trapezoidal magnets inside. They have a resistance of under 1kohm, both of which contributes to the sound. They can be a bit noisy in certain environments, but the tone is so clear and deep that I would never swap them out. I'm not totally sure of what the state of Alembic pickup winding was in 1976, but your current pickups could be very unique sounding.

In any case, welcome! I can't wait to see some pix, I love these early basses!
Username: mica

Post Number: 8734
Registered: 6-2000
Posted on Thursday, December 17, 2015 - 8:22 pm:   Edit Post

Hi Jon,

Here's what I found in the records for your bass:

serial number: 76-434
model name: Series I
model number: SBI4
top: Vermilion
body: walnut
back: Vermilion
neck: Birch and Purpleheart
scale: 30.75" short
fingerboard: Vermilion
inlays: mother of pearl
peghead veneers: Vermilion and Bocate
originally made for: NAMM display
birthday: June 23, 1976

There's an undated notation of your name and that's it.

The pickups should be able to tolerate a light sanding and buffing. You can buy replacements from me, email me for details. The hum canceller should be replaced at the same time, or least purchased and tucked away for installation later as the set of three being matched is really ideal.

Hard to do much for the finish without removing it and refinishing.

Add Your Message Here
Username: Posting Information:
This is a private posting area. Only registered users and moderators may post messages here.
Options: Enable HTML code in message
Automatically activate URLs in message

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration