Refurbishing an Ibanez Soundgear GIO 4-string Bass

My friend Bill heard about my sudden guitar mania (from me) and gave me this fab old Ibanez Soundgear GIO 4-string bass guitar to play with, claiming I gave it to him back when dinosaurs roamed the earth.

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He knows I’m a sucker for cheap (or free!) guitars ‘needing a little work’. This one was missing a string and a machine head, not to mention it made no sound. But it was pretty with a maple neck, nice frets, rosewood fretboard and bright black battle-scarred agathis wood body.

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My 90 year old Daddy across the freeway in Citrus Heights helped me drill out the hole to fit the new tuner (GuitarFetish-$12USD). Looks odd but works well.

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Although there are only 4 strings they cost more than 6-string sets but I found a set on line for $8. My 1st guitar restring job!

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One of these things just doesn’t belong here, one of these things is not the same…

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The spacer was a thick old washer from my dad’s shed I ground down for height. I notched the edge with a Dremel Moto tool for the supplied screw to prevent the tuner from twisting.

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The wire from the pickup had pulled off the pot so I threaded it back from the pickup to this front potentiometer and soldered it back on.

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My soldering iron, a 10-penny nail heated on the stove top. Primitive but effective. Now she booms! Of course I’d already misdiagnosed and bought new bass active pickups on-line and they arrived the day I got the old ones to work. I’ll keep the new ones for the future since they were only $26.

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Some Ernie Ball’s Instrument Polish and Viola, Eureka, California! It’s a beauty.

 

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Bought some books and this Korg chromatic digital tuner: remember, Everyone Appreciates Dignified Guitarists.

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The heavy strings call for heavy picks they say.

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I’m still on week one lessons and exercises using one finger, two fingers or a plectrum-or guitar pick. I noticed no anti-hum foil or paint anywhere and it does hum a bit. If I install the beautiful red epoxy-filled new REDactive active pickups with anti-hum foil that should help. Naturally now I’m lusting after a bass amp.

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But I’m happy I could finally diagnose and solve a guitar problem, especially like McGuiver with a hot nail. Even played through my tiny, tinny Silvertone practice amp it sounds big! If I will ever learn it I don’t know, but despite scratches and chips and hum, I’m in love again.

 

Unless noted, all text and images produced and copyrighted by todgermanica.com. Non-commercial use free with attribution.

 

 

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