The bass in detail
The neck-body joint. A piece of Korina is laminated over the bottom of the mahogany neck. I believe that Gibson modified an EB-2 neck for the Explorer Bass.
"Blender" pot that replaced the original push-button "choke" switch. The capacitor cover can just be seen below the bridge.
The brown plastic control cavity cover and black-white-black input jack cover
are stock appointments on 50s Explorers.
The Explorer control cavity. Volume and tone potentiometer dates read 50th, and 43rd weeks of 1959. The bridge capacitor wiring connects to a "blender" pot (dated 44th week of 1962) that replaced the original switch. Below, a stock 1960 EB-0 control cavity.
Left- Explorer bridge removed to show black capacitor cover. Note the screw fittings for the original ABR-1 guitar bridge.
Right- Bridge removed from a 1959 EB-2N shows the same cover and the push-button switch.
Pickguard removal shows the original routing for PAF pickup and routing for the pickup selector switch. Both pickup holes were filled and then the body was rerouted for the massive bass humbucker.
Pickup cavity with humbucker removed. The remnants of the guitar pickup filling can be seen as well as the blue that the bass was last painted with. The pickup was topped with a later chrome cover for many years, but the screw holes for the original black plastic cover are evident. The neck shows the typical mahogany-maple construction and joinery that was also used on the '59 EB-2N (below left) and the '60 EB-0 (below right).
The pickguard is four-ply laminated white-black-white-black plastic. This is the same material used on 50s Explorers and Flying Vs with white pickguards. It is unknown when the bottom lefthand corner was clipped.
The complicated headstock joinery. The mahogany neck appears to have four additional pieces of wood laminated to it plus a Korina veneer on the back and a white holly veneer on the front under the black paint. Although the original banjo tuners have been restored, screw holes from the later Kluson tuners are evident.
String theory- the Explorer's unique headstock.
Truss rod and adjusting nut.
Left, Explorer Bass; right, 1960 EB-0.