Sunburst Fender Precision
Written by t-sakamoto (translated by mami)

Fender Precision Bass Sunburst(1)

This John's first Fender precision bass is called "post CBS type". It tends to be misunderstood as "pri CBS type", because the logo design of both bass resembles (John's "pri CBS logo type" bass is only the original precision built in 50s).

John mainly used this 'sunburst 1' till about May 1975, and after peeling off its coating, he used it as sub bass (natural precision 1). The main reason of peeling off seems to come from a rumour that the sound is better than before if doing so. (Actually in 1968 John & Paul from Beatles peeled off the lacquer coating of their instruments, which caused their sound better).

Fender Precision Bass Sunburst(2)

John usually used a sunburst precision which had a silver transition logo, and a one with black transition logo (sunburst 2 : see this picture) was prepared as a spare. So this is very rare case.
This black transition logo was born when Fender CBS changed their logo in 1968.
After peeling off its coating, 'sunburst 2' becomes 'natural precision 2' and has been used at several gigs since 1976.

These pictures are at Rainbow Theater. We see a sunburst precision at the side of a piano.
John used his two sunburst precision basses until the beginning of May, 1975. And between May and June they were peeled off their paint of body, and since then, these two basses have been used as natural precision.



The exception is these two basses which we can not confirm any logos on their heads.
These two kinds of bass are not the same.
The left picture is from promo clips at St Johns Wood Studio ("Keep Yourself Alive" "Liar"). Even if seeing from every angle, we can not confirm a Fender logo.

On the other hand, in the right picture from promo clips at Brewer Street Studio ("Keep Yourself Alive" "Liar"), we can confirm "Fender" logo on its head ('sunburst 1').
The bridge cover is left without being removed. Inside of this cover, a hard sponge form thing is attached, which has the role to mute strings. Namely it's the same role as famous 'sponge' at 'Rainbow Theater'. The cover is not attached in the other bass.

Incidentally, the clip "Liar" in "Rare Live" is the edition of both. Basically the scene at St Johns Wood is used in it, but John's close up is taken at Brewer Street Studio.

Let's see it a little more.




We can not confirm "Fender" logos in (1) and (2).
But the position of strap pins of the reverse side of the head or the other parts are the same as that of Fender precision.

As for the position of finger rest, it doesn't exist where it usually belongs. It is replaced in the top (the top of the E string) of the pickup (see (4)). Maybe John himself renewed its position.

Although it's just my conjecture, it is conceivable that this bass and 'sunburst 2' are the same.