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 Post subject: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 11:32 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:26 am
Posts: 6
Location: Clio, MI
Hello all! I recently aquired a free Rickenbacker bass from an extremely generous friend of mine. He was in the process of refinishing about ten years back after realizing someone painted it white with a paint brush. He now doesn't have the time, money or desire. Lucky me! While learning much from reading the posts on this site and Joey's Rickenbacker Bass page, I have found some questions about my prized Rick. I don't know how to post pictures here but I have a couple on my Facebook page. (Search: Vinnie Corbit). For starters, the truss rod cover says: Model 4003, one piece neck, triangle inlays, dual truss rod, skunk stripe down the middle, a 2 piece pickguard and 5 screws holding down the tailpiece. (Three under the saddle and two in the back) This would all indicate an early 80's 4003, correct? Here's the confusion. The Jack plate says: QJ 4364, which dates it back to October 1977. 4003's weren't made back then, right? I'm going to assume a previous owner (other than my good friend) may have switched the input jackplate with a 4001 plate. (Perhaps to fool a uneducated buyer? but then why keep the 4003 truss rod cover?) Another thing I noticed, the screw holes for the top section of the pickguard don't totally line up and there are a two sets of screw holes for the bottom section of the pickguard. Did it have a different pickguard at one time? Are the one piece pickguard and two piece pickguard the same size? I'm positive it's not a "lawsuit" copy. I know enough to know that it IS a Rickenbacker. Some things aren't lining up. (literally) It's not even logical to think someone would want to make a 4001 LOOK like a 4003. If anyone can offer any help, advice or info, it would greatly be appreciated! I can also take more close-up pics if need be. (Just let me know how to post them on the site) Thank You!






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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 6:05 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 3:58 am
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Location: En Zed
OK, first off, 4003s never had a "skunk stripe", so if yours has one, it's a 4001. But you say it has a 1 piece neck? Do you mean neck through as opposed to bolt on? All 4003/4001 models are neck through.

The 2 piece pickguard came out on the early 4003 models. It's there because they swapped the direction of the truss rods and they are adjusted from the body end instead of the headstock. It's likely that the pickguard and name plate/TRC have been swapped to make it look like an early 4003.

So, take off the TRC and take a look at what you have there. Early 4003 just have 2 slots where the truss rods go, no nuts, etc. A 4001 will have 2 truss rods with nuts against an aluminum plate.

As for posting pictures to this forum, only the moderators can do that here.

Oh, and welcome to the forum!


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 9:44 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2006 2:00 pm
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Location: dallas texas
Certainly there's something not right here. As mentioned, skunk stripe = 4001, but 2 pc pickguard = early 4003. Also, 4001's had the model, (and made in USA) stamped on the TRS, but not any 4003's that i've ever seen or heard of. Not sure what you've got, but it's definately an oddball. good luck with the research.


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:09 pm 
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Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2005 1:00 pm
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Location: The Rickenroom
If I remember correctly, the 4003 basses that I bought new in '81 did have "Model 4003" on the TRCs. If it's not a faker with RIC parts, then it sounds like a 4001 with some parts swapped for 4003 parts. Can't tell if it's a faker or not without seeing pictures.

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Throw that piece of firewood where it belongs and get yourself a Rickenbacker!


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:22 pm 
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Early 4003s most certainly DID have "MODEL 4003" on the TRC. Here's my '84:
http://rickresource.com/register/user_i ... llsize.jpg

And it would be easy to swap the 4001 TRC for one that said 4003. Same thing for the pickguard, other than needing a few new holes...


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:26 am
Posts: 6
Location: Clio, MI
Thanks for the welcome and quick responses guys! When I said the neck was a one-piece, I meant to say a thru-neck. Sorry for the confusion. I took off the truss rod cover, and there are two truss rod ends with two truss rod nuts. Just below them, is a simple boat-shaped metal plate. Some other things that tell me it's authentic: The wire path for the neck pick-up is a series of spade bit holes, drilled all the way across to the switch & pots cavity. On the bottom, the binding stops where at butt-end of the neck and sides meet.
I didn't know that 4003's didn't have a skunk stripe? Well, that's a big give away!
So, from all your info, I'm going to venture an educated guess and say I most likely have a 4001 that was made in Oct. 77 with a 4003 TRC, 2 piece Pickguard and tailpiece.
Hmmmm.... but why?


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:53 pm 
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Quote:
So, from all your info, I'm going to venture an educated guess and say I most likely have a 4001 that was made in Oct. 77 with a 4003 TRC, 2 piece Pickguard and tailpiece.
Hmmmm.... but why?

Yep, I'd say that's highly likely.

As for why, well, back when the 4003 came out, it was the new big thing, and with the 2 piece pickguard, had a distinctive look. I had a 4001 and oh, how I wanted a 4003! Well, there are those who just have to have the latest, and if they can't have the real thing, they make what they have look like it (think of all the body kits to make various cars look like Ferraris, etc.).


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 Post subject: Re: 4003 or 4001?
 Post Posted: Tue Jul 27, 2010 11:46 am 
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Joined: Sat Jul 24, 2010 10:26 am
Posts: 6
Location: Clio, MI
Well, it all makes sense now. A big "Thank You" to everyone for there help. I can see how someone would want to make their 4001 into a 4003 back in the 80's but now-a-days that's almost sacrilege.


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