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1973 Rickenbacker 4001 Vintage Neck Through Bass Mapleglo w/ Checkerboard Binding, Toaster & Case


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Up for sale, a 1973 Rickenbacker 4001 in excellent condition and in perfect working order, complete with a hardshell case. Produced in the first quarter of '73, this Rickenbacker is one of the very last to retain a bevy of features seen from 1969-72 including checkerboard binding, full-width triangular fretboard inlays, a distinctive squared-off bridge pickup surround, and a Toaster Top neck pickup.

Featuring neck through body construction and strung with roundwound 45-100 strings that accentuate the grind and top end articulation of the instrument, there's equal parts midrange power and fundamental warmth available via the original pickup pair. The bass weighs 9lbs, professionally setup here at Mike & Mike's Guitar Bar with easy-playing action and accurate intonation.

The neck has a C-shaped profile carve with full, but not horribly overt shoulders, measuring .880" deep at the 1st and 12th frets. The 33 1/4" scale is Rickenbacker's traditional long scale, and the bound slab rosewood fretboard features original triangular inlays that extend the full width of the fretboard. The fretboard has been stripped of its gloss (a welcome modification for a broad range of players), and the bass has been refretted with medium fretwire, exhibiting wear primarily beneath the A and D strings on frets 1-7. The bass plays well in every register with a straight neck and pair of responsive, optimally adjusted truss rods. The nut measures 1 11/16" in width, and the headstock features the original lucite Rickenbacker logo/truss rod cover and a set of Grover tuning machines with distinctive wavy clover buttons. The tuners have clean chrome plating, turning smoothly and holding pitch well.

All of the electronics work as they should, with all original componentry in the harness and CTS pots that date to the 1st week of '73. The Rick-o-Sound stereo jack plate has a stamped serial number with an "MC" prefix that dates to March of 1973. The original hardware includes the four-saddle bridge, and the mute assembly portion has been removed. Original plastics include the single-ply pickguard and quartet of knobs.

The gloss Mapleglo finish is 100% original, framed by checkerboard binding, exhibiting buckle rash on the bass side of the back, a smaller spot of localized wear through the gloss on the back adjacent to the Rick-o-Sound jacks, and some minor marks from use on the body as a whole. The neck profile retains its smooth gloss with some palm wear down to the bare maple central to the carve behind frets 3-5.