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Thread: Stingray maple fretboard finish variations

  1. #1

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    Stingray maple fretboard finish variations

    So I've just hunted down a Japanese 3 band Stingray that needs a bit of love and care. A lovely lightweight (9 lbs) black/maple 4 stringer. Sounds great, neck is straight, has a couple of dings, scratches and true road wear, but I'm cool with it. Fantastic companion to my 2 band Stingray. I stripped it down, checked all the components and parts, and cleaned it up nicely. I was surprised on one thing though.

    It's the usual oil & wax finish, but the fretboard is poly finished. I expected oil & wax even on the fretboard, but I guess they did this combo as well? Does anyone have knowledge on when EBMM did the combo oil/wax/poly on maple/maple necks and then switched to full on oil/wax on maple/maple necks?

    I took the neck off, cleaned it nicely and started my usual Tru Oil process - I'm gonna add about 6-8 thin coats of Tru Oil on the neck to give it extra protection and seal it a bit. Did the same thing on my 2 band and I love it.

    Anyways, you can see on the photos that the fretboard is poly finished because the finish is worn in couple of places (I'm mending those slightly too with Tru Oil).

    Seller doesn't know the year of my Stingray, but I'm guessing late 90s early 2000s because it doesn't have the mute style bridge that MIJ Stingrays had in the beginning, nor the old school neck plate.

    EDIT: Just for those who might not know about these MIJ Stingrays, here's a quote from EBMM: "The EX were made from the same materials as the StingRays that were produced in the US at that time. Predominantly ash bodies, alnico preamps, etc. They were done in the mid to late 90s and early 2000s." Kanda Shokai were the distributor and those were meant for the Japanese market. Real mojo machines if you ask me and a very cool piece of Stingray history.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Stingray maple fretboard finish variations-1neck-jpg   Stingray maple fretboard finish variations-2neck-jpg   Stingray maple fretboard finish variations-3neck-jpg  
    Last edited by mouth; 05-30-2019 at 04:44 AM.

  2. #2

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    Can’t help you on the fretboard question but if you follow this link and put your serial number through it will give you some more info on your bass

    Serial Number Database | Ernie Ball Music Man

    StingRay 4HH. SapphireBlack.2006
    StingRay 4H. Buttercreme. 2005
    StingRay 4H. ”SunBlue”. 2005
    Bongo 4H. Sapphire Black. 2005
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE amps...

    https://www.facebook.com/DanSmithBassist/

  3. #3

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    If it's a Japanese EX Bass the serial wont be there. EBMM doesn't keep records for them.
    Last edited by Rod Trussbroken; 05-31-2019 at 12:26 AM.

  4. #4

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    Yeah, no info for the EX Japanese series. Also sent mail to EBMM, they don't have them in the database unfortunately. They're like the bastard sons of EBMM xD xD

  5. #5

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    These people did them. The also have a page on Facebook:

    Kanda Shokai Corp
    3-4-2 Kandakaji-Cho,
    Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 101
    P: 8133 2543 617
    F: 8133 2543 618

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Trussbroken View Post
    These people did them. The also have a page on Facebook:

    Kanda Shokai Corp
    3-4-2 Kandakaji-Cho,
    Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 101
    P: 8133 2543 617
    F: 8133 2543 618
    Hey Gav, yeah I know. Too bad you can't contact them on FB.

    But from what I gather, all they really did was just put them together from US parts. I don't think they did any paint and finish work. I could be wrong, but I doubt it. Which makes me think that the (early and late?) 90s Stingrays had finish on the maple fretboard, but oil/wax on the back of the neck.

    I'm sure someone with more experience with Stingrays and their history would know this for sure. EBMM started oil/wax finish sometime around 1993. I believe they still protected the maple fretboard with some sort of hard finish (probably the same satin poly finish that protects the headstock and logo), while keeping the back of the neck oil/wax. Unless this is somehow only found on Stingray EX basses.

    I don't think someone refinished it either, it looks too well done, and on the other hand, why not finish the whole neck then. Second, I've seen it in photos of other MIJ EX Stingrays as well, where it also looks like the fretboard is coated.

    It's not something super important sure, but I like gathering tidbits of information like this to see how the instrument has evolved during the years.

  7. #7

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    Hey guys, for anyone interested, I asked EBMM about parts that they sent to Kanda Shokai, and whether they did any finishing and/or wood work in Japan. I got the answer:

    "Hi

    Thanks for playing Music Man.

    We sent parts to Kanda, they built their own necks and bodies and finished in Japan

    Cheers,

    Music Man Customer Service Team"

    Well that settles it then, I guess they finished the necks a bit differently than EBMM did.

  8. #8

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    Interesting. Thanks mouth

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mouth View Post
    Hey guys, for anyone interested, I asked EBMM about parts that they sent to Kanda Shokai, and whether they did any finishing and/or wood work in Japan. I got the answer:

    "Hi

    Thanks for playing Music Man.

    We sent parts to Kanda, they built their own necks and bodies and finished in Japan

    Cheers,

    Music Man Customer Service Team"

    Well that settles it then, I guess they finished the necks a bit differently than EBMM did.
    Learn something new every day. I didn’t even know there was a Japanese run. Very cool thanks for the info

    StingRay 4HH. SapphireBlack.2006
    StingRay 4H. Buttercreme. 2005
    StingRay 4H. ”SunBlue”. 2005
    Bongo 4H. Sapphire Black. 2005
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE amps...

    https://www.facebook.com/DanSmithBassist/

  10. #10

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    .
    A similar thing was done with the Pre-EB Sting Ray "XV" Japanese Basses c.1982. Same 2EQ preamp and "B0xxxxx" serial numbering system. Similar headstock logo but instead of "MUSIC MAN Sting Ray Bass" it merely read "MUSIC MAM".

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Trussbroken View Post
    .
    A similar thing was done with the Pre-EB Sting Ray "XV" Japanese Basses c.1982. Same 2EQ preamp and "B0xxxxx" serial numbering system. Similar headstock logo but instead of "MUSIC MAN Sting Ray Bass" it merely read "MUSIC MAM".
    So that would of been around the same time It was transitioning to EBMM? (84 is the official date if I’m correct on that )
    And was the set up the same? Like preamp and parts were supplied and they built their own body and neck ? Also was there much price difference between them and the Calli built ones ?

    StingRay 4HH. SapphireBlack.2006
    StingRay 4H. Buttercreme. 2005
    StingRay 4H. ”SunBlue”. 2005
    Bongo 4H. Sapphire Black. 2005
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE amps...

    https://www.facebook.com/DanSmithBassist/

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Trussbroken View Post
    .
    A similar thing was done with the Pre-EB Sting Ray "XV" Japanese Basses c.1982. Same 2EQ preamp and "B0xxxxx" serial numbering system. Similar headstock logo but instead of "MUSIC MAN Sting Ray Bass" it merely read "MUSIC MAM".
    Wow, yeah, you're right, I remember that (well, reading about it online). Man those are rare birds, and very very interesting. I wonder how they built those.

  13. #13

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    .
    Guys,

    Re the “EX” Basses (with EB parts). I’ve only seen a few. These ones had six bolt necks so they’d have to date from 1990 onwards. Two of them had neck and body pencil markings (1998 and 2000 respectively). The 1998 was White with Rosewood and a top load bridge. The 2000 was Natural with Maple and a strings-through-body bridge. Another Bass (Sunburst?) had no date markings at all. I believe they were discontinued soon after this. I don’t know if there are any earlier EX Basses. I’ve also seen a Japanese catalogue describing the top load Bass as the “EX” model. The “EX-TB” is the strings-through-body model.

    Re the “XV” Basses (with Pre-EB parts). I’ve seen three of them. Two were Red (maybe Candy Red) and a Sunburst. All had 4 bolt necks and top load bridges. That would place them around late 1982 or latter. One of the Red's had a Rosewood fretboard. The other two were Maple. A friend in Italy owns one of the Red Basses. The hardware is clearly genuine MM (pics on my website under “Bass Collections”). I don’t know if they built their own bodies and necks. Back then, the US Pre-EB’s were around $900 USD but don’t know the Japanese pricing.

    PS. The EX Basses were intended for the Japanese market so I'm guessing the same with the XV's.
    Last edited by Rod Trussbroken; 06-07-2019 at 10:44 PM.

  14. #14

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    Thanks for the info. All interesting stuff. It’s all new info to me. Cheers!

    StingRay 4HH. SapphireBlack.2006
    StingRay 4H. Buttercreme. 2005
    StingRay 4H. ”SunBlue”. 2005
    Bongo 4H. Sapphire Black. 2005
    GENZ-BENZ & ORANGE amps...

    https://www.facebook.com/DanSmithBassist/

  15. #15

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    Fantastic info Gav! I wish I could decipher the DOB on my EX. Both the neck and the neck pocket have this writing: "040605-11". Could that make it a 2004 model?

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