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Please Help Questions 1986 Warwick Thumb 5 String

Discussion in 'Bass Guitars' started by Eduardo_maynez, Oct 24, 2016.

  1. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    image.jpg
    [​IMG][​IMG] Hi
    I recently bought this bass from a London store ; they have not given me the serial number but they say it's from 1986 and one of the first thumb 5 they made ; they say that Warwick used Bubinga OR Azfelia for the body of the very first warwick thumb 5 strings .
    Do you know which of those 2 body woods this bass has? I recently saw one very similar but with an oil finish and indeed it had Azfelia wood and not Bubinga ! Any idea how I can find out? Is the thumb 5 introduced in 1986 or 1985?
    What month ??
    Thanks in advance!!!

    Lalo. Garcia
     
  2. shaftbass

    shaftbass

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    Do they refuse to give the serial number or have they just not done so? It should be in the end of the headstock or maybe electronics compartment. Some early basses had no serial.

    You can always email HP and ask. Sometimes he remembers those very early ones exactly which number it was and who (if any artist/player) it was made for.
     
  3. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    They have not done it yet...
    I had a red one and it was hard to see the serial because of the gloss paint!
    Do you know if the thumb 5 was introduced in 85 or 86?
    Thanks my friend !!!

    Lalo Garcia
     
  4. Florin

    Florin Warwick Forum Administrator Staff Member

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    Hi Eduardo, I think 86. They are very rare, anyway! You can check the wood by removing the bridge of pickups, you will see the bare wood. Old afzelia can be dark as bubinga, but if you show us a picture we can tell you what wood is. Removing the bridge will show even a bigger surface :)
     
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  5. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    Cool! I will do that as soon as I get it!
    It's in the plane from Europe to dc now

    Thanks indeed !!

    Lalo Garcia
     
  6. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    image.jpg Here is the 1986 thumb 5 with Azfelia body instead of Bubinga . Very rare and beautiful !!!
     
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  7. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    Ok.... Regarding my white Thumb 5; A few questions for you Vintage Warwick Experts:

    1. I can NOT see the serial number because of the Gloss finish; i wouold love to know if this is from 1985 or 1986 or 1987? I can see one Zero (0) on the serial number; which makes me believe this is a very early Thumb 5. any suggestions?

    2. The Bridge does NOT say Warwick; it's just an old Schaller Black bridge; I have seen early thumb basses that the bridge say "Warwick" (like the one pictured here with Azfelia wood). My question is: What came first? The bridges that say "Warwick" Or the ones that don't say anything?

    By the way the sound is amazing!! Super happy!!
    Thanks for all your help!

    Lalo Garcia
     
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  8. Hoggles

    Hoggles Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    Congrats on the Thumb! That is sweet. Definitely one of the first runs of 5's.

    Can you please take some detailed pics and show em to us?

    Pretty please :)

    You can also email Hans-Peter and crew some pictures...see what they say.

    To answer your question about the bridge. The ones that don't say anything came first. That sounds normal. The first bridges on JD Thumbs for example...do not have the Warwick stamp on em. Not sure exactly when they started stamping their name on them...but I think it was in '86 sometime.

    Here is an '85 JD with no stamp on the bridge.
    downloadfile.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2016
  9. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    So Nice! I am thinking this White thumb may be one of the first ones they made! The bridge does not say anything like you explain...
    How can I email Hans-Peter? May be actually remembers building this bass!
    THANK YOU for your assistance!

    Lalo Garcia
     
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  10. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    Also worth noting is that the truss rod cover does NOT say "JD"; it's just a White Plastic cover that says Warwick. Is this a sign that this bass can actually be from 1985 or early 1986?
     
  11. Hoggles

    Hoggles Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    By chance, is this the one you bought?? If not...you probably have it's sister. If so....the seller then described as an '87. No truss cover in this one...but there aren't many vintage white thumbs out there. Maybe the shop in London slapped a custom white truss rod cover on it? Post some pics :)
    Warwick Thumb 5 String Bass 1987
    IMG_1562 copy.jpg
    IMG_1565 copy.jpg
    IMG_1566 copy.jpg

    To email Wick.... [email protected]

    Hans-Peter or his wife will probably respond to ya :)
     
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  12. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    I finally removed the bridge !(2 years later!); I took a picture of the wood under the bridge; I think the bass is from javusry of 1986, but I’m not sure .... please help !
    It’s imposible to see the year on the headstock because of the heavy gloss white paint . But if you help me post this picture and hopefully you can help me determine the year and the body wood . I can’t post the picture from my home . Can I email it someone for you to post and assist me in determining the year and body wood or this bass?
    Thanks for all your help! I love this bass !!! It growls !
     
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  13. Florin

    Florin Warwick Forum Administrator Staff Member

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    Both Bubinga and Afzelia can look pretty dark at this age. Both have open pores/ grains. Look at the pores. Afzelia have a yellowish tint. Bubinga is reddish. If you know this it is quite easy to determine the wood. Afzelia pores are a bit larger and more dense than Bubinga's.
    So both should be brown. Reddish brown is Bubinga, Yellowish brown is Afzelia :)
     
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  14. Florin

    Florin Warwick Forum Administrator Staff Member

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    Also I am pretty sure this is NOT 1987, I owned a few of them, and the 87 ones look different. Have different pickup placement (less slanted). Even if the bass was finished and sold in 87, it is an earlier model, and probably it was built before.
     
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  15. Hoggles

    Hoggles Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    Yeah, the angle of those pups screams '86. Not sure exactly when the angle was changed, but it must have been sometime in late '86, early-mid '87.

    It's not easy finding pics of confirmed '87 5'ers. Here are two lefties, both of which are from November of that year, 2 numbers apart. Sister lefties, with 157 possibly being the first Thumb (4 or 5) to have a two piece bridge. You can see the pup angle is much less severe by this time.

    K157 87
    Screenshot_20190105-080156__01.jpg

    K155 87
    Screenshot_20190105-081304__01.jpg

    I think Flo is right, you most likely have a '86. Possibly, just possibly '87. I need to do some web searchin' to find pics of late '86, early '87 Thumb 5'ers. If anyone has pics, feel free to post :)

    Edit: I wasn't thinking clearly about the dates of some of the known '86 5'ers. The L51 and L60 (December, possibly late Nov) both have the super pup angle....so...it is possible you have an '87. Possible. It does look like the super angle was there at the very end of '86 and maybe the start of '87. Also, it seems like it's a safe bet to say yours is Afzelia.

    I'd love to see some known early '87 5'ers. That would solve the pup angle change mystery :)
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
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  16. Eduardo_maynez

    Eduardo_maynez

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    Under the bridge it says written by hand :

    A062-86

    I am trying to post that picture but I can’t !
    How do you post pictures with your iPhone on this forum ? May be you can help me determine if it’s Bubinga or Azfekis body wings ?
    Thanks to all !
     
  17. Hoggles

    Hoggles Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    Interesting. The "A" doesn't match up with the 62 86. I say this because we know there is an L 60 86. Which is the Natural Oil one in the pic up top. A is January. L is November. Something with that serial you see is not quite right. A 62 87 would make sense. Hmmm.

    I'd love to see picture. Sounds like you're having an issue uploading a pic. If it's under 2mb, you can upload it directly to the forum server. If larger, you will have to use a picture hosting site. You can also reduce the size of your photo with an app, or by cropping on a PC, to get it down to 2mb, for a direct upload. Let us know any specific issues on pic uploads your having a problem with.
     
  18. DiMarco

    DiMarco nutcase Good Vibe Sponsor

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    Maybe it was the 62nd bass made in january alone? I don't know how many basses a month were produced in those days...
     
  19. Hoggles

    Hoggles Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    Serials suggest they were making roughly 30ish 4 string JD's per month, in '85. I'd imagine they were making even less 5'ers per month, when those started production in '86. Example would be L60 86 to K155 87. That's only an average of about 8 or so 5'ers being made each month in over a year.
     
  20. Toepfer

    Toepfer Supporting Member Good Vibe Sponsor

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    The Frankenthumb is G 015 86, so A 62 is unlikely
     
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