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The combination of 19th Century automation (they had powered saws and shapers back then) and 16th Century handwork is mind blowing. Like the only guy in the world, supposedly, that can pinstripe a Rolls, how about the fellow that eyeballs, then hand cuts the fret slots.
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Having never picked one up.
Makes you want one after seeing that!
Fascinating, really enjoy videos of luthiers building instruments, though I've never liked the look of the Hofner Beatle Bass.
1. First and foremost, what a cool video. Thanks for posting.
2. I always wondered why there was such a price range for the different Hofner basses ($350-$3,000). Now I see.
3. The fret cutter (around 8:55 in the video) is mind-blowing. If one of those frets is even one millimeter off, the instrument will never play in tune. And that guy cranks them out like he's flipping burgers. Amazing.
4. For all its iconic status, it seems like not many professionals play the Hofner. Aside from Sir Paul, who else plays them?
"The passage of my life is measured out in shirts."
- Brian Eno
Early on the gang saw is cutting the laminated sides just a 'steenth short of through, eliminating any chance of tearout. THe operator just pulls them apart with a tiny bit of flashing, easily sanded off.
I thought I was pretty good with a hand scraper but this guy is getting long shavings you'll only see from a Plane in my shop!
What these craftsman bring to repetitive operations is astounding.
The model that Paul used has a great tone, but does NOT hold a tune well. Not as well as the Fender Precision, IMHO.
Prolly because of the hollow body construction versus Fender's solid body.
Very interesting. Lots of true craftsmanship there. Thanks for
(But I think you meant "Hofner", Hohner makes harmonicas!)
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