1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

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Aussie Mark
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1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Aussie Mark » 11 Mar 2018, 14:35

As many of you know, I'm not gigging much these days (only the occasional fill-in gig) so I am being practical and looking to sell gear that will only get played once in a blue moon. I'm not really expecting that this beautiful and rare bass will find a buyer on the forum, but I'll put it here anyway because as always I will sell to a forum member for less than I would on eBay or Facebook (which are where I will list it at a higher price later next week).

This is a 1966 Ampeg AEB-1, serial #028, which makes it very early (a prototype - see below for more info) and very rare. The hard case is a later reissue Ampeg case.

The bass is in very good condition for a 52 year old instrument, everything works perfectly, and the neck is really nice to play. I bought the bass in 2012 and the only work it has needed was a new output jack. Strings are near new D'Addario Chromes. Action is nice and low and the sound is just as described by Ampeg expert Bruce Johnson on his wonderfully detailed website about these basses .... http://xstrange.com/aeb1.html

Because of the type of pickup, these basses have one tone only - a warm and creamy vintage, upright-like tone. The tone control only adds nasal "honk".

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Bruce has this to say about this particular bass -

"The first 50-54 AEB-1 and AUB-1 Scroll Basses that Ampeg made were effectively prototypes. They were pretty much hand made in Ampeg's instrument shop during 1966, up through about August. Around September 1966, they finished up the production tooling, and started cranking out the production instruments.

The prototypes have a few differences that you can spot right away:

The tailpiece is just a flat-topped rectangular bar. On the production instruments, they added a curved shape across the top and bottom surfaces of the tailpiece. On the body, the outer sides of the F-holes are routed straight down through to the back. You can see the whole thickness of the body. All of the production instruments have an additional undercut routing around the outer side, that matches the look on the inner side of the F-holes. On the headstock, the cutout of the peghead (where the tuner posts are) is rounded at the inner and outer ends. You can see this clearly on one of the pictures of #28. On the production instruments, the cutout is more squared off, with about a 1/4" radius in the corners.

Some, but not all, of the prototypes have a more conventional bone nut at the end of the fingerboard. You can see this on #28. The aluminum plate acts only as a washer for the truss rod nut. On the production necks, they extended the fingerboard and added a zero fret. The aluminum plate got an extra vertical flange with slots, to double in function as a string spacer. Note: There are some later AEB-1's out there which have been modified and now have a conventional bone nut. What you see on #28 is the factory configuration used on some of the first 54 prototype instruments.

There are some other differences that you can see when you open the instrument up. But these are what you can see from the outside.

I currently know of the existence of 10 of the approximately 54 prototypes. Yours, #28, is one of the three that are in all-original, excellent condition.

Famous bassist note: #038 is owned by Michael Steele (female) of the Bangles.

The lowest serial number Ampeg I know of is #16 (no zero in front). From there up, I have records on #022, #024, #025, #028, #M-030, #031, #038, #50 (no zero again??) and so on. These are all the prototype-style AEB-1's and AUB-1's."

Price is $3,500 firm. Location is in Sydney, and I will ship Australia-wide for an extra $100 (the case is very heavy; bass + case weigh 14.2kg). I can do Paypal if that's easier for someone and I will eat the fees. Can also offer a payment plan over say 3 months if that helps.

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Last edited by Aussie Mark on 23 Mar 2018, 08:55, edited 1 time in total.

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PBass
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by PBass » 11 Mar 2018, 17:15

I cannot afford to look at this post. Ever since I saw Johnny Colt of The Black Crowes rocking an Ampeg scroll bass in the Remedy music clip I’ve lusted for one of these. Best of luck with the sale brother

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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by packrat » 11 Mar 2018, 19:43

Do you have an audio example of the bass.?

Thanks

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Aussie Mark
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Aussie Mark » 11 Mar 2018, 20:20

Here's the audio sample from Bruce's website -http://www.xstrange.com/AEB-1.mp3

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trentp
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by trentp » 12 Mar 2018, 11:35

wish I had the cash!
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by stonecoldbass » 12 Mar 2018, 11:51

Wow that's an amazing piece of bass history at a great price! Beautiful design on that bass as well IMO. Is that the original case? Prince would've been proud!!
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Aussie Mark » 12 Mar 2018, 12:02

stonecoldbass wrote:
12 Mar 2018, 11:51
Wow that's an amazing piece of bass history at a great price! Beautiful design on that bass as well IMO. Is that the original case? Prince would've been proud!!
GLWTS
No, the case is from a limited run of cases that were made more recently - I picked up the case on Reverb a couple of years ago.

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irvinz
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by irvinz » 12 Mar 2018, 12:47

Image

Don’t see these too much in the wild. Chances upon this a couple of years ago in a market in paris

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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by rodl2005 » 13 Mar 2018, 09:24

Beautiful example!
By golly. By gum.

One can dream...... would be a superb investment too no doubt.
GLWTS Mark
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Paisley
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Paisley » 13 Mar 2018, 10:01

Gorgeous!! :drool:

One of my heroes John Giblin used a fretless AUB quite a bit; I believe he used to have one of the Ampeg Baby Basses as well.
Often wondered if he used the AUB on Babooshka.
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by veebass » 13 Mar 2018, 13:36

Good chance this is a fretless one on this recording. GLWTS- it's a bit more than I can sling at the mo'.

Image

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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Aussie Mark » 13 Mar 2018, 14:31

Rick Danko also used a fretless AMUB for many years with The Band and on Dylan albums - but he modded his with a P bass pup. The AEB/AUB have the "mystery" pickup under the pickguard like mine does, while the AMEB/AMUB have a conventional pickup like the one in the photo above

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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by basshack » 13 Mar 2018, 19:34

That would go nicely with my eclectic collection but no job means no basses. If I get off my butt and find something then we'll be talking.
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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by Aussie Mark » 15 Mar 2018, 15:32

Now up on various Facebook groups for people to tyre kick. Still being offered here on the forum for less than the Facebook price.

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Re: 1966 Ampeg AEB-1 "scroll" bass and hard case

Post by veebass » 15 Mar 2018, 15:52

Aussie Mark wrote:
15 Mar 2018, 15:32
Now up on various Facebook groups for people to tyre kick. Still being offered here on the forum for less than the Facebook price.

Yes, lots of tyre kicking on those FB pages. GLWTS.
Happiness is .......a Telebass and 500W.

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