July 2001

Rare Gem

Take your time while examining this bass. Inspect each close up carefully, because this is one of the most unique woods we have ever seen. The figuring is so detailed on this Quilted Coco Bolo, our digital camera can't capture it all. The color is such an intense red color, we've dubbed her "Ruby" as is befitting such a rare gem.

Ken's 5-string
bridge and tailpiece The central portion of this piece of wood looks like you'd expect from a typical piece of Coco Bolo: nice red-orange color with dark, nearly-black grain lines. But as you get closer to the edge of the bass, the surreal quilted figure of the wood reveals itself to the "oooohs" and "ahhhhs."
Intertwined with the dimensional quilt pattern is a healthy sampling of intense burl figure. The erratic dark lines swirl around, lending a cloud-like appearance to the wood. elbow cut
peghead front logo peghead back
click image to enlarge

We made the peghead veneers fom the same board as the top and back, which are all successive slices. This logo was carefully inlaid by James. The sterling silver logo was first goldplated to match the hardware, then the mother of pearl and abalone pieces were hand fit into the shapes before inlaying it all into the peghead, to be recessed under the finish.

Looking up from the tailpiece to the bridge is the best way to see the highly polished finish. The shine from the tailpiece is reflected distinctly on the mirror-like surface of Ruby. tailpiece
backplate battery plate peghead back
click image to enlarge

Because this wood is so rare, we must insist that all instruments we make from it have these splendid continuous wood backplates to fully appreciate its beauty. This time, we've added a thin binding of Maple around each plate.

front back


  • 5-string Series I bass
  • Quilted Coco Bolo top and back
  • Bookmatch to center front and back
  • Europa body shape
  • Europa peghead shape
  • Side LEDs in red, inlaid in silver circles
  • Ebony neck laminates
  • 24k gold plated solid brass hardware
  • Continuous wood backplates
  • Abalone inlays
  • Inlaid logo with shell

Price available on request

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