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Manfred's Hagstrom Stories. 

Page 1 (Semi Acoustic) - Page 2 (Earlier Solid) - Page 3 (Later Solid)

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Please send your contributions to one of the e-mail addresses at the base of the page

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December 2005: The Prize of a Bass Collection
- The Batman (or Duckfoot in Sweden) from 1961...

  

   


 

...a real rare gem of the Hagstrom Bass family I've looked for, for a long time now.

This is the so called Duckfoot or Batman Bass. To my knowledge 79 of them were built in 1961.

So far I have seen five. They come in multiple colors from black, sparkle red, sparkle blue to sparkle emerald green. I haven’t seen one in gold but I’m confident there’s one out there.

The electronics design etc. is already described in detail on your website[1] [2], so I let the pictures speak for themselves.

 Oh yes this bass arrived with the original perfect fitting blue Hagstrom Gigbag. Maybe one additional interesting fact. The batman is a solid body bass.

Well Manfred what can I say? Nothing at all for once... the pictures say it all!
Sorry... I can't help it... It's perfect!!!

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December 2005: Manfred's collection continues to amaze with this wonderful H8 example...
I’ve attached some pictures of an 8 String bass in an awesome walnutburst.

Depending on the light the color changes with the transparent layers of yellow, red and black. Best Regards, Manfred


 


 


Click on the icon pictures above to see larger versions
 


One model I do not have in the UK collection, this makes that gap even bigger in my mind!

Having had the pleasure of meeting Manfred in Ostersund late 2005, makes the contributions he sends for the site all that more special. Thanks, as always, for your superb attention to detail...

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The lesson today comes from way back in the early days of vinyl.
Vinyl covered guitars and basses that is!

If you are new to this page, you'll be amazed at what you find here, if you have been before... well we slipped in this first entry in Feb 05, way after the rest of the pages...

It is the start of the vinyl, the days of Kent, Futurama, and the move away from accordion material finishes and sparkle...

Click the small pics for larger versions

Hello David, It becomes pretty hard for me to find something really new now. I’ve already most of the “original” models in my collection and the “new” Hagstrom Bass guitars are scheduled for later this year.

But recently I’ve added another pearl to my collection. It’s a PB-24-BG out of the year 1963. This marks the early beginning of the Kent I / H I B series. On the first look there are not too many differences.

But … at this time there was no switch plate which means no labels that explain the function of the four switches.

 There’s no Hagstrom label on this Bass. Ok the first thought is that this was removed or lost during the last 40 years.

 But I’ve done some research and I got the impression that every Bass or Guitar out of this area has no label.

The next major difference to the later batches is the headstock. This one is similar to the one used on the Coronado series. This is changed later to a more let’s say elegant design.

And see the red sprayed swimming pool inlet. Most of these models are equipped with a silver or later gold one. But some times you see this part sprayed in red or blue suitable to the color of the body.
Best Regards, Manfred

What a superb example this is for it's age. Great condition. It just so happens I have the six string guitar here in the UK that matches this bass. Same red grill etc., The headstock is also the same shape, and when I received it - it was also blank. However in the process of restoring it (it wasn't as good as this bass for condition), I found a brand new decal inside the body, ready to apply! In my case, as it had been supplied to the UK, it was destined for Selmer, and the model name they would sell as was a Futurama II Deluxe! Good old Hagstrom eh? Nothing of not confusing at times!

I also mentioned this was the departure away from glitter, well "where's the glitter" you say? Work your way down this page, and you find something that really sparkles later on...

Hello David, Ok you got me. I've turned on the sun again for the attached pictures. This week I'll show a Hagstrom I B Bass out of the year 1966, with serial number 670277. This one is equipped with the squared pickups. And have a look on the "Hagstrom III" sticker on the neck. Since Hagstrom did not build any Hagstrom III bass, I could imagine that someone take the sticker from the parallel running Hagstrom III guitar series and put it on. Maybe it's by mistake or he forgot to cut the extra digits. Take Care, Manfred

How on earth does he find them in this superb condition?

I wasn't thinking when he said H1B... out of 1966... at first I didn't picture this beautiful Hagstrom 1B in my mind. Take a look at the body close-up picture.

This is when 1 means 2 and How about that headstock logo saying III?

There are a few variations with these Basses coming out of the same stables as the (Hagstrom made) Kent 1B. Pictures on the Bass page even show an earlier example marked Hagstrom but listed as Kent in the record books!

Maybe this didn't have a logo at all when it left the premises, it could be an aftermarket (original) logo - you could still get those until recently from Karl-Erik Junior...

And yes.... the sun shines brightly again!

Update February 2004: The Kent 1 Hagstrom 1 Bass from 1964...

I love this shot, you almost expect Clint Eastwood to appear from behind the guitar!

Well this is out of chronological sequence in all respects, being earlier manufacture than the one above, and much later in terms of me receiving the details from Manfred, but this is the place it needs to be, to maintain some context of the story.

By February 2004 (as it is now), I think this page must go on that long list of pages now in need of new sequencing...

... the time will come... sometime!

Meantime, lets enjoy (the now well known) detail that Manfred offers us in his presentations for our enjoyment.

Another superb example, and a brilliant insight to the model - Thank you again Manfred!


Hello David,

This time I have a part of the Hagstrom I / Kent I history.

This is a Kent I B out of the year 1964.

I’ve added some pictures to show the differences to the already displayed sample out of the year 1966.

Please compare the pickups which are oval compared to the squared ones of the later model.

The strap knob is plastic and was replaced later to the more functional metal one.

Also have an also detailed look to the inlet of the “swimming” pool, you will recognize a silver pyramid pattern compared to the golden weaved cord pattern of the later model.

Best Regards, Manfred

Now we get a rare view inside this model, the three part body, and all in such wonderful condition! If only more were such well kept examples of playable history...

   

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March 04: Update on the Kent1 range...

Hello David, Let’s go back a little bit deeper into the Kent I Bass History. The attached pictures show a Bass out of the first batch named Kent I out of the year 1964.

You may ask – what’s the difference to the other Kent I bass already presented on your page? Ok so let’s have a detailed look.

Obviously there’s a plastic Hagstrom logo on the top horn of the bass and no decal on the head. But the more interesting detail is how the oval pickups are mounted.

They are clued into the plastic cover. The next batch produced in 1964 has already the pickups screwed in and adjustable in height.

 Best Regards, Manfred

 

There is whole history on this page thanks to the dedication, and detail provided by Manfred.

I am also continually impressed at the level of quality and condition that turns up in this collection!

I recently purchased a Futurama / PB-24-G and it was barely held together by the packaging!
This too (used to have) two pickups glued in (painful laugh this end...),
but back to this bass beauty - click the small pics for bigger ones - as always!

Thanks again Manfred!

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The Darling Buds of Kent

In the lower right corner of the United Kingdom of Great Britain you find KENT. Known as the Garden of England, the Darling buds of May used to send blossom into sweet ripe fruit for the next generation, and hops for the next year of 'draught bitter' beers... I was born there, and having blossomed a bit too much for my own good, moved to an even sunnier place by the sea. (OK, so what's he on about now?) Well, here we see what bore fruit from 'Kent in Sweden' too:

Hello David, I'd like to continue my travel through the history of Hagstrom Bass Guitars with the Hagstrom De Luxe Bass (Serial Number 643528) out of the year 1965. This series is the link between the Kent/Hagstrom I B and the Hagstrom II B. You will find the oval pickups, the volume knob and the white plastic cover with the labeling for the switches which are used previously in the Hagstrom I B series. On the other side there's the body of the later Hagstrom II B. The last time you've asked : How on earth does he find them in this superb condition? To answer this I've added especially one picture that shows that this bass is not perfect. I've you want to buy a bass or guitar on ebay or just by exchanging pictures by email, keep in mind that pictures show mostly only what you should see and not the bad spots. Don't forget to ask about details or pictures of locations which are not really visible on the pictures. Hey David how did you find the time to update your website while you have this great new guitars in the house? Congratulations again. Also the Hagstrom UK newsletter is a great idea. Thanks.

These guitars and basses were certainly the 'seed change' from the early models into the mainstream competition for Hagstrom. Thanks again to you Manfred, this page is a brilliant browse for all of us, and the advice is very sound. I've had the occasional disappointment through online deals, but check you ask all the basic questions that come to mind. If the seller is serious, then they will oblige with extra photo's or confirmation and answers. If not, then you may be in for some rotten fruit! 

If anyone wants to be added to the (occasional) newsletter, then send me an e-mail (link below), and you'll get the next update - sometime in the future!

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Learn about the subtle changes...
...with Manfred's comprehensive collection! (March 04)

Hello David, Today I have another part of the Kent I B History.

Let’s go to the time where this Basses are named Hagstrom I B. Exactly to the last batch of this model in the years 1966-1967.

There are only small changes made to the previous batches. Hagstrom has introduced the new Volume knob with the enumeration and for this reason also the switch plate has changed and is now without the digits around the volume knob. So please take care when buying a switch plate as replacement part and check on that little detail.

And there’s another little detail which is introduced at the time when the Pickups switched from oval to square. Please compare carefully the backside of this bass and the Kent I B model. You will recognize the yellow stain on the white bass but that’s no what I like to show.

 Have you seen that the two small plastic covers are no longer used. This covers are used to seal small hole which are used to secure the bass during the manufacturing process.

Best Regards, Manfred

 

Another revelation to many, thanks to the detailed interest, and consistent generosity provided by this presentation. Thanks again Manfred!
Don't forget to open the thumbnail pics for larger versions of the detail

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Manfred showed us above how to go... H to B

<- As always, click the small pics for bigger closer views

So now, expanding on the theme - take a look at how things develop, how testing can be fun, and how to dress the whole thing up in a nice stripy number!  

Oh yes, and as for the sun.... now you see it, now you don't eh?

May 2003...
Hello David, This time I have added some pictures of my two Hagstrom IIB

The serial number of the sunburst is 654657 build in 1965/66. The serial number of the blue one is 679816 build in 1966/67.

 

 

As difference to the "evolution" model some before there's the rectangular pickup and the "new" volume knob, which is also used on the early Concord and Viking series. Ok, to be exact there's a difference. The control pots used in the Concord Bass has a longer thread then the one in the H II B. There is no labelling on the knob. This is added later with the Concord Deluxe, H II B N and Swede models.

As compensation that this is not that spectacular model, I've added on special picture to personalize this page.

      

 

ED: The more you get into this stuff, the more you get inquisitive, the more you know what you're doing, the more you get out of it all - Manfred, thanks for your continued support for the website. Your collection continues to inspire, and (on a personal note) your photo's are consistently excellent - including the courage to personalise your very own page, so no apologies - spectacular is all you could say about the whole collection!

 

That 'baby-blue' certainly grows on you.

I wasn't sure, some time ago but then a while back I nearly bought a Futurama (UK model) but it was about to open up at the seams - that must have put me off, but I must be over it now... and in the last few months the appeal has grown again!

 

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Now, this is a Real Rare Gem - A second series Coronado IV from 66

Hello David, Today I've something special for you, a Coronado IV Bass out of the year 1966 (Serial Number 658074). This Coronado IV is out of the second "series" (not batch). There're some changes to the first series like the two chrome finger and thumb rests. Did you recognize the plastic Hagstrom decal on the body? Wow. I must not talk about the tuners or the separate adjustable plastic saddles. The controls and volume lever are also described on the page presenting your Coronado VI Bass out of the first Coronado Series with the one long finger rest below the pick ups. Yours, Manfred

Manfred, That looks one smooth player....
Your generosity with pictures, details and facts make this page a real MUST for all visitors - thanks again for your support for the site!    May-03

 

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Redding Epitaph

Fast Approaching six months since Manfred made us aware of his quest for Hagstrom Basses, he moves into the fabled Jimi territory (it was Noel actually), with the uniquely eclectic H8 model. Timely, with the recent passing away of Noel Redding at his home in Ireland last month...

Hello David, This is the next evolution step of the Hagstrom II B series, the 8-String Bass. This one in mahogany sunburst finish is built in 1968 and has serial number 730008. To get space for the additional four tuners Hagstrom modified the neck and added a new Headstock. The same neck is used later for the H II B N models. Additional to the Bass tuners they added four Guitar tuners.

The body got bigger around 2.5 cm in length and width. This body is also used for the H II B N. The pickups are changed and get the big oval pole covers. Hagstrom introduces with the 8-String the metal bridge into the H II B series. There's a separate saddle for every string. The interesting part here is that they have used three saddles from the 12-String guitar. Have a look on the detail picture.

The second set of four strings of this bass are tuned to the same notes but one octave higher than the standard four strings.
Yours, Manfred

 Thanks to Manfred for the detail, overview and observations - it provides a well rounded presentation - making my life much easier,
you know what, I'm getting itchy for another Bass myself....

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Is this little number a Square peg in a Round hole?
- no, it's A square Plate around a Triangle of Holes!

There are a few references to the temporary use of a square neck plate on some Hagstrom guitars. Often people think it's a sign of damage repair, I think maybe someone broke the machine that stamped out the plate, and they had to get some alternatives from elsewhere! Likely we'll never know... unless someone can tell us for sure ?
Hello David,

This update covers the H I B (F100B) which was mainly produced for the Canadian market as low cost product.

The concept seems to me strait forward. Take whatever part you have and build a bass based on the H II B with only one pickup.

As result it is not possible to describe "the" H I B. I've seen every combination of tuners, pickup or knob used on the other models. There's also a very good example of three different H I B on John Haskin's Website .

One interesting component is that they use sometimes a neck plate with four holes. As you could see on one of my pictures the body contains also the standard three holes. Yours, Manfred

Imagine the scene: "...sorry boss, it just crumbled, I know it's just the neck plate, but I said we needed to re-tool that stamper..." etc., I know, it's just a thin theory, and after all what other models have this modification around the time - none as far as I know.

If it was a matter of entry level spec I doubt it was worth making this difference. In the big acoustic models the B120 had no plate and the BJ12/H33 had the shield plate - that was a matter of spec level... so what was it here?

As John and others have said about this model, a sound that belies the fact this may have been intended as a lower spec or less expensive starter, but in fact, a sound all of it's own - that many love to play by choice.

Steve Hansen's 1972 (first pictures on the Bass Page) is a slightly earlier example from the same batch, and yes a square neck plate.
I don't believe it was an planned change, for as Manfred shows us, the body was drilled for the three hole joint too.

I like those black rubber strings - they look cool - a different sound again maybe? ... all in all another very worthy addition to this fantastic collection, and like Steve Hansen's it really brings out the red flare in the sunburst, and great clean condition too!

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As with special collectors such as Jon Casselman, Manfred Graeder has an inspired view of the Hagstrom Bass offering.
Anyone who says the Bass is the poor relative to the lead guitar has not lived the Hagstrom story to the depth it deserves. There is so much variety of style and sound, feel and looks. Just as progressive as any company, more than most - more than the 'big' names -  what would Hagstrom be offering now if they were still in the running?
Two years into this Hagstrom appreciation website, Manfred continues to provide spectacular photo's detail and variety,
to make me want to come back for more - and I'm the one who puts it together in the first place!
I hope it does something for the other visitors too!

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What some people do to make their Hagstrom... better?


Hello David, This time I’ve some pictures of a beautiful red F100B Bass.
I’ve got the bass through ebay with a replaced Pickguard and an additional Pickup mounted.
I cleaned it up and removed the additional Pickup. Doesn’t it look better now? Best Regards, Manfred


Pity the dials are like "Hens Teeth" to find...


it looks absolutely superb now!
(Note this batch didn't have the square plate)


SO CLEAN and NEW looking!
C'mon AM&S... try to get one like that in the line up eh?

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"Will you still Need me... will you still Feed me... when I'm
(a Bass from) '64?" (Please excuse the poor Beatles reference here)

Hello David, This photo selection leads us back to the year 1964.

PB-24-BGFuturamaHIIBNThis bass, with serial number 585184, is listed in the Hagstrom Gitarrer Booklet as
Futurama.

In previous sessions we have discussed the evolution of the Hagstrom Bass from the PB-24-BG (Hagstrom I) to the H II B N.

I must admit that I've overlooked the Futurama which is another step between the PB-24-BG and the De-Luxe Bass.

It has the old body style of the PB-24-BG but without Nylon covering. The pickguard has also the same style, but without the "swimming pool".

I've added some pictures to show the advantages of that design, which make it possible to remove the complete electric without cutting one wire.

 

This bass is equipped with plastic strap knobs, which are used in some of the first batches. Best Regards, Manfred


 

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Some people make the assumption that the name Futurama here means Hagstrom made all of the Futurama guitars. This is not the case.
The brand started off at
Blatn in Czechoslovakia by the Resonet Company. It was a brand name often used by Selmer in the UK.
Follow the link in this paragraph to read this little chunk of the history.

My own Coronado six string bass is branded Futurama and it has those hard plastic strap knobs too.
It was distributed in the UK by Selmer, most other places it would have said Hagstrom - confusing eh?

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Coronado VI - Another early unique offering from Hagstrom,
a really well balanced Bass, this from the official batch of 6 string basses

Hello David, This time I have a set of pictures of the Hagstrom Coronado VI Bass (Serial# 597058) out of the year 1965-66. The details are already perfectly described on your site. So the only thing left for me is to add this set of pictures including some close ups and hidden details. Enjoy. Yours, Manfred

Here follows our conversation over this latest presentation, comparing the Hagstrom UK model:
(David:) These are great fun aren't they. Being a six string player I find it easier to find my way around the Coronado VI and it is comfortable to hold, but of course it's more of a stretch for the fingers trying a six string riff! The Concord is more comfortable to actually play as the strings are further apart!

(Manfred reply:) You see I'm a four string player, so it's very difficult for me to handle the narrow space between the strings. I will try it out from time to time. Anyway that's a very beautiful and seldom Bass. Do you know that the neck of the Coronado VI is shorter then the one on the Coronado IV?

This looks like a fine example again, and I'm impressed that you pull them apart then put them back again. I would normally only do that if something went wrong (but them I'm no expert engineer!).

Yes it's in good shape but there was a lot of work to do after it arrived. It was really dusty with some dings here and there. Two brushings missing etc.. It's not so easy to find some; it took me some weeks to succeed finally. They are just between every actual guitar and bass tuner size. I also pull basses apart only if necessary. This means if necessary for cleaning or if something's wrong with the electric. I had the feeling that the top pickup is a little low compared to the second one. And yes there is one magnet missing. I was so excited I just forgot to make some photos. I hope to get some new strings in October...

It's interesting there are some differences - such as the Kings Head Logo position on the back of the neck on this later batch, the kings head logo is a plate on mine that exposes the workings of the truss rod at both ends. The L and H tone marking instead of simple 3 and 4 is a clearer layout on the buttons too. Also the hard plastic strap nuts have moved on to metal ones (or someone has changed them). My own one wasn't even listed in the booklet, being built during part of a run of Coronado IV's, this makes it possibly a prototype before the listed production run.

That sounds reasonable for me.

How do you find the volume slider works? I have this arrangement on the Corvette too, where it makes very little difference between on and off altogether, on the Bass it does work well.

It works pretty well on both Coronado's. And the joke is it's just a standard pot like you have it on every Hagstrom Bass. The slider is mounted through a special gearing. I will make some pictures soon.

 

So now I will venture into my Corvette again where's the WD40? - thanks Manfred!

UPDATE DECEMBER 2003 - THE INSIDE PICTURES

Here we see that amazing geared Master Volume used on the Corvette, Condor, Impala... and of course Coronado Basses

The full reverse view of the pickguard


 

Tremendous thanks to Manfred for these detailed pictures.

We all look forward to any new episodes!

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Now, how do you top and tail such a comprehensive Bass collection?
Add a Hagstrom Bass amp of course! (...Manfred does it again - superb!)


Hagstrom 210 Bass Amp Rig (Oct 03)

See the full selection of photo's on the Hagstrom AMPS page
Congratulations Manfred!

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Now lets go low-down to the "dawn of deep" for Hagstrom

Before we get into this one - I had to be reminded that

the Goya models were all semi-acoustic...

DOH!

I've now moved this presentation to it's rightful place

 

A superb example of a 'lost' batch from 1961. Here is (yet) another twist to the batch listings that crop up once in a while, which - as Manfred says, is covered elsewhere. There is a section on the background to this guitar's origins on another page brought to us through Gary Engelmann - another page not to be missed!

Thank you Manfred for this addition, another step toward a complete bass collection is made!

 

 
     
     

FROM MARCH 04 THIS SECTION IS NOW VIEWED IN SMALLER CHUNKS!
Page 1 (Semi Acoustic) - Page 2 (Earlier Solid) - Page 3 (Later Solid)


 
STORIES MENU | HOME | NEWS | BASS GUITAR VISITORS | GUITAR VISITORS

Such dedication is inspired. Almost as inspired as I am looking at this page of contributions
- What more can I say than a BIG THANKS again!

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There must be loads of stories (and pics) around from the last forty years, why not share them with us!

 

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There's nothing like a REAL original Swedish made Hagstrom (and there are loads around), but if it 'floats your boat', or you can't find an original then who are we to say?

Plenty has been said already and
will be said forever forward probably.
Only you know what's right for you!