The Twelfth Fret ~ Since 1977 ~

Airline Pocket Bass by Valco, Black 1964

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Here is a rarity,  an Airline Pocket Bass by Valco, Black dating to 1964, a short scale bass regarded by some as one of the best recording basses ever made. 

The Airline Pocket Bass was built from 1962 to 1968 at the Valco shops in Chicago, Illinois, along with other Valco brands including National and Supro. Valco also branded their instruments for other companies, many of which were distributors or catalog retailers like Montgomery-Ward and Sears Roebuck. Valco amplifier production followed the same pattern but their customers included established builders like Harmony, Gretsch and Kay.

Using a small double cut body and a rather short 24.75 inch or 628.6mm scale length, the Airline Pocket bass used for the most part locally sourced woods like Poplar, Alder and Maple for the neck and body, but the fingerboard and bridge were at this point Brazilian Rosewood. Hardware include Kluson Deluxe tuners and a trapeze tailpiece, and dual pickguards each with a thumb or finger rest. There are two pickups, a neck Humbucker and a bridge Piezo element.  

This Airline Pocket Bass dates to 1964 and is in good playing condition.  It has expected finish wear and a few small dings and dents here and there.  

G E Smith, a well known guitarist who’s played for Hall and Oates and spent many years as the bandleader for Saturday Night Live, regards the Airline Pocket Bass as one of the best basses for recording. These Airline basses have been reissued by the current copyright holder, Eastwood guitars, though they have made some changes including increasing the scale length to 26.5 inches or 673.1mm – still quite short for a bass. In comparison, the Hofner Beatle Bass and the Gibson EB line are both 30 inch or 762 mm scale length; Fender Precision and Jazz basses are 34 inches or 863.6mm.

This bass is sold without case.


 

Price: $1,500.00 CAD
  • Model: Pocket Bass
  • Year: 1964
  • Finish Black
  • Class: Vintage
  • Serial Number: G32034
  • Country of Origin: USA
  • Condition: Good
  • Date Posted: 08/07/2020

  • Not Consignment

  • Required CITES documentation
  • Instrument Weight: 6.644lbs 3.02kg
  • Scale Length: 628.6mm 24.75in
  • Nut Width: 43.3mm 1.7in

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