SUSTAIN FOR DAYS! Get you a metal bass….literally!
Hold on to your hats, buckaroos, because this one serious musical machine. Behold, a Kramer DMZ 4001 from 1979 with one of the first ever mass production aircraft aluminum necks. Aluminum necks have become a bit more common in the modern era with companies like EGC, but when this bass came out, they were really blazing a trail by trying to compete with master luthier Travis Bean himself.
The bass is solid maple, so it is fairly hefty, but it really has a great tone that can vary pretty easily between fat and punchy. It plays and sounds like a dream, not a single functional issue to report.
The bass was originally active, but when I got it, someone had gutted the active electronics, so I decided to do a custom wiring from scratch using the original components, so I rewired it like a P-bass, but I used one of the mini-toggles to make a kill switch. The other mini toggle is a dummy switch, it doesn’t do anything. The kill switch is a lot of fun to play with, especially if you like to play with any fuzz or gain. The bass was missing the rear control plate when I got it, so I made one out of thin plastic and shielding tape, it matches the aluminum neck, and keeps the bass good and quiet. (Though admittedly, it is not the most professional control plate in the world, so I am discounting the bass a little for this reason.)
The pickup is a vintage 1979 Dimarzio Dual Coil (stock) and sounds FANTASTIC. And the cold war era Schallers work great and are stamped “Made in W. Germany.” The D tuner is a little bent, but still turns fine. The parts alone on this bass are worth well over the asking price.
As always, I cleaned it up, polished the finish, oiled the board, flushed the electronics, changed the strings and set the action as low as I could. Comes with the original Kramer hardshell case, though the case has seen better days. The latches have all broken, so I bought some latches at Lowes and got some small padlocks I will be including, so the case locks now. (see the last pics in gallery). The case also had a fairly musty smell when I got it, but I have vigorously cleaned the case and have been letting it air out in my shop and spraying it with Febreze, so I have mostly killed off the smell…just know it might still have a faint musk when the bass arrives. Additionally, I pack my stuff tight and insure every package for the full purchase amount, so you can buy with confidence.
Got questions? Shoot me a message, I love nerding out with other gear heads!
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