My bass collection - G&L


When G&L introduced their version of the “Superstrat” in the mid-1980‘s, many had a Kahler vibrato. What might be somewhat unexpected is that they did the same for a number of basses. An Interceptor Bass and L-2000E are featured in the ad from 1984 below both with a chrome Kahler™ 2410 4-string unit vibrato with rearward saddles. But the El Toro-E has also been seen with a Kahler. Even more, in 2016 a true “unicorn” was sold on Reverb: a White passive El Toro w/Kahler vibrato and Black headstock! The Krome version of the vibrato units are complemented by matching chrome tuning machines on the other end of the basses. This Interceptor Bass w/Kahler has a similar Black finish as the one on the left in the ad and also shares a (7½”) rosewood fingerboard, here found on a 34” scale hard-rock maple neck, but with a Black Krome vibrato unit and black tuning machines on the sickle headstock, even though the inserts are now oxidized bare aluminum. The body is swamp ash and heavy. Two small footprint Magnetic Field Design (MFD) Bi-Pole™ humbuckers are controlled by the same wiring harness, mounted on a similar control panel, as used on this Interceptor Bass. Read Greg Gagliano’s “Wiggle Stick Basses” article for more. Another specimen is covered in this post on the site. Or watch Andy Irvine play his Kahler equipped 1981 L-2000 (note the absence of a G&L hook on the headstock) in 2 tunes: “Funk Groove” and “The Truck”, the latter with some distortion to boot. While his Kahler is clearly not factory original, these videos still nicely demonstrate the effect of a vibrato unit on a bass. The Rarebird page for Interceptor Basses in the Guitars by Leo (GbL) Registry only contains few other similarly configured basses.


Interceptor Bass w/Kahler

The story behind this bass


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It took years, make that more than a decade, to track down any of the 3 mentioned models completing the quest to have (at least) 1 G&L bass with such a unit. Greg could not act as a source because his “Wiggle Stick” bass had departed his collection a long time ago. Oh, and did I still wish I would have paid attention when that “unicorn” El Toro was available. That would have killed two birds with one stone. Alas ... But I did pay attention when Jonathan Sullivan posted a rather cryptic message on Facebook and a conversation was started. It took about another month or so before the deal was agreed on. The bass came without the original arm. Fortunately one can still get replacements OEM Kahler arms specifically for bass. As seen below, these bass arms have a longer length compared to a typical guitar arm. Jonathan was not sure whether the provided case was the original. The passive El Toro acquired less than a month after this Rarebird came without a case. A suitable replacement was found almost immediately but turned out to be a better fit for this bass. Hence, the 2 were swapped. So how does it sound? Great! Exactly as one familiar with the El Toro or “normal” Interceptor Basses would expect. How about that wiggle stick? It would be quite the stretch to call it “dive bombing” but it is easy to add a nice vibrato to a note, more noticeably so on the higher strings. Very interesting!

The story behind this guitar



JUN 22 1984

MAR 23 1984

D’Addario EXL170 Nickel Wound Light Long Scale (45-100)