Thunder III


Matsumoku 1981-?

Active models  to 1983,  passive from 1983


There are at least 3 versions of this model.

Version 1

Specs (from the 1981 catalogue)

  • body: Canadian Ash, hard Maple and Walnut
  • neck: through, Hard Maple and Walnut, 5 piece laminate
  • fingerboard: Ebony
  • brass nut
  • 25.5 inch scale
  • 24 frets
  • steel tailpiece and bridge with brass saddles
  • metal back plates (Presumably like those on the Thunder II and III basses, anodised aluminum, not brass)
  • two Magnet-F530 pickups
  • controls: master volume, tone, equalizer volume
  • coil tap, phase and active EQ switches
  • 3-way pickup selector
  • active EQ is + or – 25 db with a centre zero position, gain is adjustable up to 13db
  • available in Walnut and Sunset Red
  • optionally available with an XLR connector instead of the more usual jack socket
  • script logo on headstock

Thunder III version 1Thunder III v1 body

Thunder III v1 backThunder III v1 headstock back

Version 2 (1982-3)

Specs (as shown in the 1982-3 catalogue)

Differences from the earliest version:

  • HF530G pickups
  • more ornate Swiftlok tailpiece
  • controls:  master volume, tone, equalizer tone (Active gain is not adjustable)

Version 3 (1983-?)

Specs (as shown in the 1983 catalogue)

This version does not have active tone controls.

  • body: solid Maple
  • neck: 3-ply Maple, heelless built in
  • fingerboard: Rosewood
  • bone nut
  • 25.5 inch scale
  • 22 frets
  • black plastic backplates
  • S/H/S pickups (Super II/Hammer I/Super II)
  • precision tremolo tailpiece
  • controls: master volume and two tone,
  • 3-way pickup selector for the single coil pickups
  • ‘mix sound’ switch for centre pickup
  • 3-way coil tap switch for centre pickup
  • phase switch
  • Bird ‘W ‘logo on headstock
  • the logo is inlaid Mother of Pearl
  • available in Onyx and Pearl Silver

Thunder IIIA frontThunder IIIA Thunder IIIA Thunder IIIA headstockThunder IIIA backThunder IIIA headstock back