1958 FENDER PRECISION BASS
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Early in the year the three tone sunburst finish replaced the two tone (on most basses). Some custom colors were introduced but very rarely with matching headstock. By December the 13 screw tortoise shell/white/black/white pickguard began to be introduced, with a sheet metal ground shield underneath. This was in addition to the 10 screw gold anodized aluminum pickguard. By December the "A" string pole pieces on the black bobbin split pickups were flush. The "A" string pole pieces were previously raised.
Other 1958 Precision bass characteristics: spaghetti logo with no patent numbers applied on top of the finish, Kluson no-name riveted clover reverse tuners most often with large phillips head screws but occasionally with slot head, one piece maple neck with skunk stripe and phillips head screw truss rod adjustment, black dot fret markers, neck butt pencil date, fifth hole on neck butt for hanging while painting, no neck pocket paint stick, body nail holes (for painting/drying), 2 screw plastic thumb rest under G string, ground shield under pickups, pickup cavity pencil date, chrome pickup cover and bridge cover with foam rubber string mute, flat top knobs, CTS or Stackpole potentiometers, white rectangular tone capacitor with blue stripe, Switchcraft input jack, cloth wiring, ground wire route underneath finely threaded bridge, brown tweed case with red or gold interior, or brown or black vinyl gigbag.
Serial numbers ranged from roughly 023000 to 31500, although there are many overlapping exceptions. Some serial numbers were preceded by a dash (-). Some neckplates had a different serial number stamped on each side. For more precise dating cross reference the serial number with the instrument's neck butt, body date and pot codes.