Hamer Custom 12-String Basses

Since its beginning Hamer has always been a custom guitar company. Over the years they have produced some very unusual basses. Many of their 12-string basses incorporated the standard features of their basic models and only varied in the electronics or finish colors. Here are some of their basses that are more unusual.

Doug Pinnick's Left-Handed Chaparral 12-String Bass

This bass incorporates a standard right-handed Chaparral body while the neck is left-handed.

Doug Pinnick and Jol Dantzig of Hamer USA


Doug's Custom Left-Handed 12-String Bass with B12A-Style Headstock
The body style is similar to a left-handed B12S. It has the B12A-style headstock and dot inlay neck.

See close-up photos of this bass here.

Steve Stevens model

This bass was made for Jon Brant and is now owned by Chip Z'Nuff of the band Enuff Z'Nuff. The body style is not the regular B12S shape. It is very similar to the old Steve Stevens model guitars with beveled edges all around. There are 3 humbucking pick-ups. It has the asymmetrical headstock with the Gibson-style "bell" truss-rod cover which implies that it only has a single truss-rodMetallic light blue finish which is difficult to see due to all the stickers.

1986 Hamer Steve Stevens 12-String Bass



Three single coil Bartolini pickups, three switches. Single truss rod. Original 'BMW' red paint.

1990 Custom Chaparral 12-String Bass

This bass was customized for Chip Znuff of the band Enuff Z'Nuff. The graphics were all custom painted by Hamer. The 12-string Chaparral bass was not actually introduced until 1992, but for this bass a Chaparral guitar body was used. The guitar body does not have the scallops on the body that are found on the bass body. The neck has the boomerang inlays.

Photo from the 1994 Enuff Z'Nuff album "Tweaked"

1989 Scepter 12-String Bass

This may be the only Scepter 12-string bass that was produced. The color is a pink with black and whitish-silver-pearl snakeskin. It has an ebony neck with boomerang inlays at every position and is the 30" short scale. It was produced for Willie Basse of the LA-based band Black Sheep, whose name is on the headstock.

1987 P-Bass Style 12-String Bass

Custom PB-12 Metallic Purple Pearl finish 12-String Bass

Two P-Bass style 12-string basses were made by Hamer in 1987. They are referred to as model PB-12. This one is the second of the two basses made and was built for master bassist Billy Sheehan. It has custom Bartolini and P-Bass pick-ups, electronics similar to those found in Sheehan's Fender basses, a custom 8-saddle bridge and custom tailpiece. It has a single truss rod. This bass was strung Inverted since Sheehan is a fingerstyle player and the Inverted arrangement allows for the octave strings to be much more prominent when played fingerstyle.

Sheehan gave this bass to Chip Z'Nuff, who later sold it to session pro Will Lee but Lee returned it because it had neck problems. Z'Nuff eventually sold this bass for parts since the neck rendered it unplayable. It is interesting that Chip Z'Nuff is also a fingerstyle player but, except for his brief encounter with this bass, all of his other 12's have been strung standard.

The first PB-12 12-string bass was made in the pink pearl finish.

Custom Double Cutaway B12A 12-String Bass


The photo on the left is from the booklet from Cheap Trick's "Sex America" 4-disc compilation that was released in 1996. It must have been taken in either 1979 or 1980. Tom's fringed leather pants match his Marshall stack!

The Double-Cutaway 12-String Bass in Progress
Photo courtesy of Jol Dantzig