Thursday, 23 January 2014

1962 Ampeg Baby Bass from the original generation of EUBs

Derek writes:
Hello Gavin,

I'm enjoying the EUB detour and thought you might like this, my circa 1962 Ampeg Baby Bass, the forerunner of a lot of today's EUBs. Looks kinda like wood? It's not. It's UVEX, a type of plastic that continually (to this day) outgasses a strong (and not pleasant) odor, which has absolutely permeated its wool gig bag to the point that the bag cannot be kept indoors. Check out the fancy bridge which is also serves as the pickup; here's a short description of the pickup from Steve Azola (maker of Azola EUBs):
"It's sort of a primitive yet complicated little system based on technology available when Jess Oliver devised it. He used parts and materials that were readily available at that time, which included discs and coils used in telephones of that era. The original Ampeg Baby Bass pickup concept was that the flexible diaphragm discs beneath the bridge feet are meant to mimic the vibrating top of an acoustic bass. There are magnetic coils beneath the discs which capture the vibratory action of the strings/bridge/diaphragms. Not what you would normally expect at all from anything called a "magnetic pickup" (like a P bass or Jazz bass type)"


Thanks Derek. The diaphragm pickup system is similar to that which Ampeg used in its early AEB-1 and AUB-1 "Scroll" basses.

I think we'd better feature a guitar next post, just in case the readership is getting restless.

Gavin Wilson

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