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  #1  
Old 08-22-2012, 08:28 PM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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Default Gerbruder Schuster bass info?

Hi Ken,

Im shopping around for a big bass and ive got my eye on this Hawkes

http://www.thwaites.com/basses/basse...rt-double-bass


But this bass is particularly intriguing...

http://www.lemurmusic.com/Schuster-B...fo/BASTOCK232/


Its very beautiful, has had a lot of restoration work gone into it and sounds pretty punchy on the video he made. Trouble is, i have no idea about the quality and value of Gerbruder Schuster basses. Seems like quite a bit of money for a German, but it doesent appear to be the average factory model bass. Could you give me the low down on Schusters and your thoughts on this bass? Hawkes are pricey, but we all know that. This Schuster priced accordingly?

Any advice/thoughts, very much appreciated.
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:12 PM
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Lightbulb

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Cordez View Post
Hi Ken,

Im shopping around for a big bass and ive got my eye on this Hawkes

http://www.thwaites.com/basses/basse...rt-double-bass


But this bass is particularly intriguing...

http://www.lemurmusic.com/Schuster-B...fo/BASTOCK232/


Its very beautiful, has had a lot of restoration work gone into it and sounds pretty punchy on the video he made. Trouble is, i have no idea about the quality and value of Gerbruder Schuster basses. Seems like quite a bit of money for a German, but it doesent appear to be the average factory model bass. Could you give me the low down on Schusters and your thoughts on this bass? Hawkes are pricey, but we all know that. This Schuster priced accordingly?

Any advice/thoughts, very much appreciated.
First off, the Hawkes basses are mosly made in Germany with some exception. That is why that Schuster looks a bit like the Hawkes. Some of them were made by Josef Rubner as his name was found on a Hawkes Concert bass recently during restoration. The treatment or decorations that come on basses are for orders made to the various shops or factories. This one is a bit fancy but the Ebony at the bottom of the back seems doubtful that it's original. Ask Tom Martin over there and at Thwaites, say hello to my good friend Bill.

This was a factory, not a person. Schuster Brothers I think was the name of the firm, late 19th-early 20th century. I have seen those gears on a 1903 Dölling bass and others from the turn of the century.

Do a search on Google and don't believe what every dealer says. The history of this Firm is in several books. I even emailed them about the date and tuners but they ignored me. I guess they hope no one checks.

I am at home right now and all my books are in the office. Looking now on Google at a few links I found this in seconds;

William Henley's dictionary lists several Schusters, as well as Schuster Gebruder: "Factory at Markneukirchen, 1900. Good class "trade" violins."

Jalovec's Encyclopedia of Violin Makers has two pages of Schusters, including a listing of "Schuster Gebruder (Brothers); Markneukirchen, 20th cent.


I found a Harp guitar from their factory or product line as well while searching;
Schuster Brothers (Gebrüder Schuster) Markneukirchen, 1920s

And, an old book/catalog;
Gebr�der Schuster Markneukirchen Sachsen
Fabrik und Export von Musikinstrumenten und Saiten Gegr�ndet 1854 c.1930 Katalog Nr. 70. Trade Catalogue. 271pp, b/w illustrations. German text. (bowed strings; plucked strings; woodwind; brasswind; percussion; free reed; accessories etc.)Some water staines front board and along top edge back board. Good copy


So it would seem that they were general suppliers of musical instruments and parts, Like Juzek was in America according to the 1934 catalog I have. This was before we had big music stores like we have today. The name stamped on the Gears does not mean they made the bass either. They may have just supplied the tuners. I have seen another bass of simple gamba form with their name on the tuners plates as well as an old Bohemian blockless I just read searching on google as was converted from 3 to 4 strings, the new gears having the Gebruder-Schuster name.

So, I don't know what that bass is but the tuners are Markneukirchen c.1900s. Without looking inside the bass or up close outside, I don't know how good the restoration is either. If you are interested, take that bass to another Luther for a 2nd opinion. I think they are a bit overzealous with this bass as well as pre-dating it half a century or so. Plus, it's a 4/4 size, right?
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:28 AM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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Hi Ken,

Thanks so much for responding. The bass does appear to be 4/4.
Im over in the UK, so it means getting a flight to check over the Schuster bass whereas the Hawkes in Thwaites isnt too much of a drive from me.

Its hard to tell whether the Schuster was a custom order originally or a shop bass with some fancy extras..
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:29 AM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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Also, the removable neck seems a little odd. Didn't know they were doing that back then.
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Old 08-23-2012, 07:50 AM
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Also, the removable neck seems a little odd. Didn't know they were doing that back then.
Who knows when that was done. I doubt it's original.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:44 PM
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Lightbulb ok..

Looking now in my main book for German makers, I was correct on my memory of this firm that they are not makers so you will see instruments made by many and sold by them. All kinds of instruments.

In the leading book of German makers by Jalovec he lists the following;

Quote:
Schuster Gebruder; Markneukirchen, 20th cent. Music department store supplying instruments throughout Germany and also exporting them. They used the label Cid with the name of the model following, and Tartini :the instruments were made by various makers.
So, that bass, might be something they bought and sold or, the maker just bought the gears from them. That is somewhat of a Hawkes/Panormo copy type model as well by the shape. That model I believe came after 1889, first contracted by Hawkes & Son in London. I have seen the same model by Dölling and J.Rubner, early 20th century. Again, I doubt there claim of mid 19th century.
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:55 PM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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Nice one, thanks so much for you time on this.

Its hard to get a sense of the value of this instrument not knowing who made it and its age.

£30,000+ seems a lot for an unlabled German bas, but seems to have something about it.
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Cordez View Post
Nice one, thanks so much for you time on this.

Its hard to get a sense of the value of this instrument not knowing who made it and its age.

£30,000+ seems a lot for an unlabled German bas, but seems to have something about it.
Wow, that is a lot unless its a killer bass and with some sort of pedigree. Ask the dealers there in the UK and see what they think. When you move up again and have to sell or trade this bass, you want to know what its worth in the market place. Hawkes basses are maybe similar but they at least came from a British firm and we know what to expect with them. They too however were made in the shadows as well, the makers being various German shops over time for the most part. The long string length will make it hard to sell in any market regardless of sound and pedigree. Some of the best basses with big names sit for years and years if they are over 42" mensur.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:46 AM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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oops, sorry I meant $30,000 not £'s.
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Old 08-24-2012, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Greg Cordez View Post
oops, sorry I meant $30,000 not £'s.
Yes, I saw that on their website along with some lady head German bass selling as French with an old false label they are trying to sell off as original. They just don't seem to know the difference between real and not.

I have a killer sounding Lamy here but I would suggest you come here to play it and take it back. This bass has a real professional museum grade restoration, not a repair job just to put it back in the rack and get it sold. Any bass you buy from a shop usually has restorations less than you would have had done had you been able to contract the work yourself. Therefore, it has to be done over, better, or remain a sub-par repaired bass.
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  #11  
Old 08-25-2012, 10:55 AM
Greg Cordez Greg Cordez is offline
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Lovely bass Ken! Would love to swing by the shop if im ever close enough.
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