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1967 Hofner 500/1 Beatle Bass Vintage Violin Bass 100% original w/ Blade Pickups, Case


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Up for sale, a 1967 Hofner 500/1 Violin "Beatle Bass" in excellent, 100% original condition and in perfect working order. This '67 model has features that only existed for this model year, with a combination of some of the very first "blade" pickups and one of the last raised headstock badges. The bass indelibly linked with Paul McCartney and the Beatles, this genuine vintage 500/1 captures the round, pillowy thump and definition of the Beatles sound, strung with a set of 50-100 medium tension flatwound strings.

There's a distinctive pluck, percussive cut, and hollow thud that this bass delivers even unplugged, with a broad sonic range between the two "blade" pickups. There's more nasally upper midrange cut and sweet growl from the bridge pickup and a girthy, broad thump from the neck position. Controls include individual Volume knobs for each pickup as well as a two-way Rhythm/Solo tone switch which adds a tic-tac cut and presence in the “Solo” position. Featherweight at 4lbs 12oz, this fully hollow instrument has been professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with comfortable action and accurate intonation.

The three-piece maple neck has a round, substantial C-shaped profile carve which fills the palm and chords effortlessly, measuring .895" deep at the 1st fret and 1.010" at the 12th fret. The dark, tight-grained rosewood fretboard retains the original slender frets. The frets are practically perfect with just a hint of wear beneath the A and D strings on frets 1-4, playing cleanly in every register. The scale length is 30", and the fretboard width at the zero fret is 1 9/16", forward of the carved bone nut. On the headstock, the original Hofner raised script badge is in great shape, and the original tuners turn smoothly and hold pitch well. The back of the headstock also features an uncommon "Musik-Hofner" metal badge.

The electronics work as intended, and the Hofner-embossed blade pickups are wired to the original harness with Preh pots that date to the 14th week of 1967. The harness includes the trio of black switches and stock white teacup knobs. The chrome plating on the Hofner-embossed pickup covers is notably clean, with light patina on the nickel tailpiece. The original ebony floating bridge is intact too, as is the white pearloid raised pickguard.

The original Sunburst gloss finish has broad lacquer checking across the spruce top and treble-side waist on the back, and the burst frames the straight flame figuring that extends across the two-piece bookmatched maple back. Cosmetic wear is limited to some tiny finish scuffs on the headstock veneer, some light finish scuffs in the clear coat of the gloss on the back, and some scattered minor marks on the sprue top. The gloss finish is smooth and clean along the profile length.

The original black hardshell case with blue interior is included.