In 1952, Chicago-based Kay introduced the K-162 electric bass guitar to its line. This was the four-string counterpart to the K-161 "Thin Twin" that was introduced a year earlier, and it was the second production-level electric bass guitar ever made (following on the heels of Leo Fender's Precision Bass, which debuted in 1951). The Thin Twin and the K-162 bass are believed to be the first semi-hollow electric instruments ever made—beating out Gibson's ES-335 by six years. Their unique design features a flat top with no f-holes, a free floating arched back, and two braces supporting the top. The result is an electric instrument that still retains acoustic resonance while providing sincere feedback resistance. With a short 31" scale, the K-162 is a punchy little beast that delivers powerful low-end, thanks to its semi-hollow design.
The Fritz Brothers F.B. Bass is drastically improved modern replica of these early Kay basses. Handbuilt in Fairhope, Alabama, the F.B. Bass improves the structural integrity of the classic Kay design while retaining its iconic tone. With a larger dovetail neck joint and two way-acting truss rod, its neck is designed to last for decades of playing. True to the original, its top is constructed of 3/16" Birch plywood, but it has a solid Maple sides and hand-carved, subtly arched solid Maple back. The plywood top is key to the bass' feedback resistance, but solid Maple back and sides improve its acoustic resonance. Its Alnico-bar pickup is a faithful recreation of the original (which is naturally microphonic, picking up on the bass' acoustic sound), but it is grounded properly and much less prone to signal noise and interference. Via the volume and tone control, there's a ton of flexibility on tap, but the Deep-Cut Switch gives you a quick option to tighten up the low-end.
- Fully Acoustic with Hand Carved Arched Back
- Maple Neck, Back, and Sides, with Birch Ply Top
- 31″ Scale Length
- 1.5″ Bone Nut
- 12" Fingerboard Radius
- Solid Rosewood Fingerboard
- Compensated and Adjustable Rosewood Bridge
- Custom "Vibrosonic" Pickup
- Naturally Feedback-Resistant Construction
- Volume and Tone controls plus Deep-Cut Switch
- Two-Way Adjustable Truss Rod
- Hipshot Ultralite Tuners
- Trapeze Tailpiece
- Aged Hardware
This circa-2003 Fritz Bros F.B. Bass is in excellent condition all around with no history or repairs or issues. It shows some expected play wear (see photos), but it is very clean cosmetically. The aged hardware is a nice touch, and we love the carefully-applied Vintage Sunburst finish. Original hardshell case included.