1833-34 Abraham Prescott 7/8 bussetto



This ca. 1833-34 Abraham Prescott 7/8 busetto bass has spent much of the last 50 years in the San Francisco Bay Area. It has seen use in jazz clubs, David Grisman’s bands, and a few orchestras in the area. It underwent a thorough restoration about 2013 and received a custom C extension about 2015. It is a remarkable symphony instrument with string fundamental notes down to the low C. The original 3 string neck has been retained, the 4 string width achieved by tapering the fingerboard at its edges. This bass is very much in balance with itself and plays easily with a very large responsive voice. The spruce top has had all of the old cracks reglued and cleated. The birdseye maple ribs have had extensive reinforcement cleating done, due to the twisting nature of the Birdseye maple used in the ribs. The flat back with crease is covered with more stable birdseye figure maple and shows only a few repaired cracks. The 4 string conversion was achieved with added pegbox cheek grafts and a set of French tuning machines that were commonly used in the 1920-50s era. The custom C extension replaces and older Stenholm C extension. The dimensions of the bass are: Top length 46 1/4″ (117.5 cm), Upper bout width 20 1/2″ (52.1 cm), Middle bout width 14 5/8″ (37.6 cm), Lower bout width 28 1/2″ (72.4 cm), Length of back including button 49 1/2″ (125.1 cm), Rib depth at tail 8 3/4″ (22.2 cm), Rib depth at upper bout crease 8 5/8″ (78.4 cm), Rib depth at neck joint 6 1/2″ (16.5 cm), String length 43″ (109.2 cm). This magnificent bass has a large section voice and plays easily in melodic passages. The custom cover was made by an ex-employee of Reunion Blues that makes custom covers for individuals.