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Posted by Bob Gollihur on June 26, 2001 at 10:17:53:
In Reply to: Will Buy a Wanker posted by Francis X. on June 25, 2001 at 20:16:59:
: Fellow Bassists:
: I am looking to buy an upright bass which will comfortably fit in my Morgan 3-wheeler. I remember that some years ago,the Wanker Mfg Co. of Ylsiplanti,Michigan offered an inflatable doublebass. Of course,the neck and center section was made of wood,but the rest of the instrument was made of hard rubber treated in such a way as to give the appearance of fine wood. The body was easily inflated by means of a bicycle pump,or orally if one was of sound breath. They actually sound quite well;however the bass was difficult to hold out of doors in high winds. I will pay top dollar if anyone out there has a used Wanker they are willing to part with.
You are wise in seeking one of the originals -- the reissues from a few years back were constructed of multiple layers of rubber, which, of course, were less susceptible to leakage but just didn't have the tone of the solid rubber originals.
Apparently, players with slow leaks sometimes had to pause during selections to reinflate the instrument; it is rumored that is where the expression in our musical lexicon, "blew it", came from.
If you do find one, I hope you'll post a photo that I can link to -- it would be nice to share this amazing instrument with the rest of the group.
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