I love my job as a guitar tech in New Orleans – I am sometimes privy to the coolest instruments with the coolest stories behind them. This week, I was presented with one such specimen: a 1968 Gibson EB-0 bass that survived hurricane Katrina. I understand that this bass was found floating in the muck at the owner’s home, and that it hasn’t had any work done to it since the storm. It’s in the exact condition it was found in. Check it out:
Ain’t she a beaut? Shockingly, the bass hadn’t fallen apart completely, and the original pickup still works! It certainly needs a lot of love, like a refret and complete setup, but the owner didn’t want to pursue that option quite yet, so all I was tasked to do was to fix the electronics.
The electronics, other than the pickup, were completely shot, and the bass hummed like crazy. I replaced the pots, capacitor, and output jack, and now it sounds great!
I did throw in a little lagniappe: I cleaned the corrosion off the frets, and soaked the fingerboard in conditioning oil, as it was completely dried out. I do hope I see this bass again – I feel like there’s a jewel of a bass just waiting to be revealed, with a great back story. Until then, it’s ready to thump again!