8/17/2013

c.1940 Kay M-1W Maestro 3/4 Upright Bass


This beautiful old bruiser is owned by a friend of mine and it was in the shop for a light setup. It'd settled over time and the bridge needed a slight downsizing to its legs and the nut slots needed to be lowered. It places nicely now and with the Helicores on it the tone is sort of a dense modern jazz sound.

Per the serial this is dated to 1940 and appears to be mostly original. I'm not sure on the fingerboard but the owner thinks that's original, too. It's an "M-1W Maestro" model which specifies the violin-shaped edges. The neck is thin and fast which is kind of fun to play after putting in a lot of time on my wide-neck '41 Epiphone and wider '30s Czech basses. There's some stuff you can do with a thinner profile that doesn't work on the thick and vice-versa.


The original finish is moderately worn but still gorgeous.


Nice old brass-plate tuners!





She's a beaut!





Of course, being a Kay, the spruce top and flamed maple back is all laminate, but it sure looks pretty!





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