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Username: bungalowbill

Post Number: 8
Registered: 1-2009
Posted on Sunday, September 27, 2009 - 11:36 am:   Edit Post

Prior to getting my first Alembic this summer, my main instrument for the past twenty-odd years has been an Elias. I think they're interesting instruments, so I thought I'd share a couple of photos using my new (to-me) sixteen-year old koa Essence for comparison.

They were made by Peter Elias in Canada for a brief period of time in the 80's. As far as I know, he made less than 200 instruments in a few different models, and then moved to Switzerland where he continues to make custom double basses.

It's a full-scale, neck-through 24 fret bass, but very compact and light. It's made entirely of padauk with an oil finish. Gotoh tuners, Badass bridge and EMG active electronics were standard. Mine is completely original; I bought it new in the mid eighties. It's serial number 096. I also have 015, a more standard sized fretless neck-through, more in the Alembic style, with a maple/walnut laminate neck, and J-style pickups. It's in the shop right now getting some work done, so I don't have any photos.

It's such a lovely instrument to play that despite my two recent Alembic purchases, I just couldn't let it go, even though I've encountered some rather insistent begging from more than a few friends; so I've strung it as a tenor, and am now exploring that whole thing... gives it a whole new voice!

Anyway, I post this mainly to let the group know that if they stumble across one of these, check it out, and certainly let me know! You never know; I may need another one, if for no other reason than to get my friends off my back!


(Message edited by bungalowbill on September 27, 2009)
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 8795
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Sunday, September 27, 2009 - 2:04 pm:   Edit Post

That's a great example of Flame Koa.
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 413
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Sunday, September 27, 2009 - 2:14 pm:   Edit Post

Nice looking Essence ! One of these days I may aspire to acquire one. A nice light Action Bass!
Elias looks better made then your average "P" bass as well
Advanced Member
Username: mario_farufyno

Post Number: 298
Registered: 9-2008
Posted on Monday, September 28, 2009 - 4:57 am:   Edit Post

Nice basses, show us entire "family" when the other Elias shows up...
Username: bungalowbill

Post Number: 9
Registered: 1-2009
Posted on Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 10:33 am:   Edit Post

Elias #015 finally returned from the shop last week, so here is the rest of the family! I've put it beside my koa Essence 5 for comparison. The wood has a bit of that "early instrument experimentation" vibe to it, but it sounds and plays amazingly. I don't know exactly when it was built, but I'd put it in the very early eighties.

It has passive Dimarzio pickups, and the controls are two volume, one tone, and a pickup phase switch. The fingerboard is lined ebony.


(Message edited by bungalowbill on February 25, 2010)
Advanced Member
Username: lembic76450

Post Number: 204
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 2:14 pm:   Edit Post

I like the look of the "neck thru headstock". Very nice looking bass. How about a little more detail of the round inlay...

(Message edited by lembic76450 on February 25, 2010)
Username: bungalowbill

Post Number: 10
Registered: 1-2009
Posted on Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 2:52 pm:   Edit Post

The oval inlay is the serial number plate. I've also included a shot of the headstock... I've always been puzzled by the handwritten logo, which seems completely out of character with the care evident everywhere else in the instrument!


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