Univox 'Lectra (Hofner/Beatle Bass copy) circa 1968 Reviews
I found this Bass in a local shop (no longer in business) in St. Louis MO in 1980. I'm a HUGE Beatle fan, so having a Bass that looked almost exactly like a Hofner, without the Hofner price was very attractive to me. I was not a Bass player at the time, I played Keyboards and Tenor Sax. But, I'd always loved the Bass Lines in songs... so it was a natural fit for me. The Bass was in excellent condition for age and had all original hardware except it was missing the finger-rest from the pickguard. I convinced my father to buy it for me for Xmas... think it ran for about $125.00.
The Feel, the Sound and very much the Look of this Bass... many folks at first glance think it really is a Hofner. Sure sounds like one, with that clean, smooth, woody thump. Probably the closest to the Hofner sound of any I've tried... and I've just about tried them all at this point.
The Neck is incredible... very narrow and really really fast with the short 30.5" scale. I love letting Fender (I also have a Fender V, so I can honestly say this) and other Brand players try it out... they almost all never want to give it back. Plus it's got a few cosmetic improvements over an actual Hofner... Binding on all sides and fully up the neck and headstock. Also has the same switch-pot configuration as a real Hofner except for all in reversed order-positions. One day I may move everything but why mess with it right?
There's very little that I don't like about this bass... I do wish the tail-piece was more like a Hofner but that's about it. One other dislike is the Walnut "Floating" Bridge does not offer individual adjustment for each string, so it's a little difficult to intonate... but I can always buy a real Hofner bridge if I want. It's not bolted on, so I'd only have to loosen the strings to swap it out!
Very well constructed... this Bass was constructed in Japan and as far as I can tell rounghly around 1968... and it's all still in one piece. Univox made a number of variations on this style Bass but this one is closest to the prototype. It only has a few cracks & crazes in the lacquer, none thru the wood. Nice Maple front and a Flamed-Book-Matched back... Maple Laminated neck. Fully Hollow-Body Bass with No F-Holes just like a Hofner and has the Binding on the whole unit as mentioned before. Beautiful Yellow/Orange/Red to almost Black Sunburst-Fade on Front/Back and Neck. Rosewood Fingerboard and still has the original Frets all in excellent shape.
I love this Bass and will never part with it... while I can't slap like I do on my Fender V I also don't have to strain my left hand stretching over the long scale. If you find one of these for sale in a used rack or on an auction site... give it a whirl... you'll love it.Dave from St. Louis MO
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