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  #1  
Old 01-20-2007, 07:21 AM
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Ken Smith Ken Smith is offline
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Lightbulb Kays and the like..

Most people know that I'm a big fan of the older carved Basses but a few weeks ago a Kay was brought in as a partial Trade for one of my Basses. Even though it needed some major repairs the charm was just irresistible. I have seen a few Kays over the years and even sold one or two but have rarely played them. Now out of the blue I have this 1942 Kay in great condition awaiting its restoration. See here; http://www.kensmithbasses.com/DoubleBasses/Kay/Kay.htm

Last edited by Ken Smith; 01-22-2007 at 05:52 AM. Reason: typo
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  #2  
Old 01-22-2007, 12:08 PM
Dwight McCartney Dwight McCartney is offline
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Now how cool is that? A scrawny-necked rattlesnake bass!
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  #3  
Old 01-22-2007, 12:46 PM
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Arrow Rattle..

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  #4  
Old 01-24-2007, 05:13 PM
Steve Killingsworth Steve Killingsworth is offline
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Ken Smith with a Kay bass! A sure sign of the apocalypse.
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  #5  
Old 01-24-2007, 07:00 PM
Ron Lacey Ron Lacey is offline
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Default Rattle

It's pretty common to see a rattlesnake rattle put inside instruments used in bluegrass and old-time music. I believe that Bill Monroe had one in his famous Loar mandolin and you see them in a lot of old fiddles. I've never seen nor heard of one in a bass and that's a pretty good sized rattle (and corresponding snake), appropriate to the size of the instrument. There are various theories as to why, one being that the snake essence will keep mice and other vermin from nesting inside your fiddle or it helps capture some mojo associate with poisonous reptiles. My personal belief is that they're put in there because we've always put them in there. BG and old-time musicians are nothing if not traditional. As long as the rest of the snake is not included I'm OK with it.
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  #6  
Old 01-25-2007, 01:12 AM
Dwight McCartney Dwight McCartney is offline
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Yep, I think the fiddler in Cold Mountain had one.
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  #7  
Old 01-25-2007, 12:10 PM
Charles Arms Charles Arms is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Lacey View Post
. . . As long as the rest of the snake is not included I'm OK with it.
Having grown up in East Tennessee and had a few encounters with the Eastern Timber variety, I would have to whole-heartedly agree.

Cool bass though, I am eager to see it after having gotten the KS red carpet makeover.
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Old 02-07-2007, 07:43 PM
Bob Branstetter Bob Branstetter is offline
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Back in the 1970's I owned and operated a full service violin shop. I had several old timer country fiddlers who were regular customers. I asked them about it and they said it changed the sound of the fiddle. I couldn't hear anything different when I was listening a few feet away, but up close, I could hear a funny sympathetic vibration coming from the fiddle. I can't imagine that you could possibly hear anything like that in bass though.
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  #9  
Old 02-23-2007, 07:30 AM
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Matthew Tucker Matthew Tucker is offline
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My brother plays Kora and Mbira. Both these instruments have intentional rattly metal things attached that buzz when you play them.
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  #10  
Old 06-09-2007, 03:37 PM
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Thumbs up Restoration done!

I just brought the Kay home today. The Neck repairs came out great as did the new Bridge. I will have pics done next week and update the web page.

We kept the original Fingerboard which limited the set-up job somewhat as compared to my Pedigree Orchestral Basses. Still, It sounds as good or better than most Kays I have played and plays much easier than most. I have a set of slightly used Permanents on the Bass now and they have a nice smooth tone. The soundpost was also replaced but we kept everything else original for those 'Kay buffs'.

With the G-string about 4mm at the end of the FB and the E-string about 8mm, the Bridge is 6 3/8" tall in the center. That in itself is a huge improvement over any un-modified Kay. This was the main reason I have the Neck Stand restored.

The Bass sounds smooth and deep with the Bow and nice and Punchy with Pizz.
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  #11  
Old 06-09-2007, 05:10 PM
Ron Lacey Ron Lacey is offline
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But, does it still have the rattle?
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  #12  
Old 06-09-2007, 05:17 PM
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Arrow the Rattle..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron Lacey View Post
But, does it still have the rattle?
I have the Rattle in a bag, in tact. It goes with the Bass but took it out. Not everyone like to play with Snakes..
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  #13  
Old 06-25-2007, 12:02 PM
MattDenney MattDenney is offline
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Wow, I really really like this bass!! Not so sure about the rattle, but hey..
$2500 Ken? What is that shipped to the UK in ? It is very unlikely I would be able to get this for the fact that shipping will probably be unbelievably pricey, and there is no way I could possibly get over to the US.. hmm. Interesting anyway! I must look out for one in the UK!
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  #14  
Old 06-26-2007, 04:13 PM
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Lightbulb Sry...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MattDenney View Post
Wow, I really really like this bass!! Not so sure about the rattle, but hey..
$2500 Ken? What is that shipped to the UK in ? It is very unlikely I would be able to get this for the fact that shipping will probably be unbelievably pricey, and there is no way I could possibly get over to the US.. hmm. Interesting anyway! I must look out for one in the UK!
This Bass was just Sold, Rattle and all..
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  #15  
Old 06-28-2007, 11:10 AM
MattDenney MattDenney is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken Smith View Post
This Bass was just Sold, Rattle and all..
Damn..! Very nice bass, maybe one day then. I really want to look out for a Kay in the UK, but something tells me that it is going to be very very difficult!!
Ohwell,
Cheers Ken
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  #16  
Old 08-24-2009, 12:57 PM
PaulKing PaulKing is offline
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Keep looking though ... I've scored 2 old Kays in the last year, immaculate '67 S-9 and beat up '38 M-2.
I probably won't keep both of them forever ... but then again...
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