Had a serial number question come in via email

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Had a serial number question come in via email

Postby Ken Baker » Wed Oct 21, 2009 5:02 pm

May have been a member or from the bassesbyleo main page. Mike? You out there?

The question was whether a very early B000xxx serial number was accurate for an L-2500. My initial, in-a-hurry, off the cuff response was no. L-2500s started up in the mid 90's and the SN he asked about was from way earlier - like L-1000 earlier. Turns out I was wrong.

I search of the Registry at GuitarsByLeo for a range around Mike's question bass finds several L-2500s. There were a bunch more L1000s and an L-5500 as well. So why would basses built in the mid 90's have a serial number that would drop them into the early 80s?

During the 80's the serial numbers were stamped on the bridge plate. G&L would have this bin of bridges and the folks building the basses would just reach in and grab a bridge. There was no regard for serialization. In the case of Mike's bass, it appears that one of the old bridges was found/grabbed and installed. Maybe they found a box with the old bridges and decided to use them. There is really no way of knowing.

The same lack of attention to serialization carried to the application of SN decals to the headstocks. It might be a bit better today, but I don't know how that process flows.

So... When we say that the only accurate way of dating an instrument is to pull the neck and look for dates, this is why.

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Ken Baker
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