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Any luthier horror stories?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Planet Boulder, Jan 14, 2004.

  1. Planet Boulder

    Planet Boulder Hey, this is a private residence...man

    Nov 10, 2001
    6,482 feet above sea level
    I once had impure thoughts. Oh, and I pluck my ear hair.
    Was curious about others' experiences.

    Mine occured just today.

    For the past several weeks, one of my basses has been in the possession of my local luthier. For the past 3 weeks, I have been calling his shop, hoping to find out something, anything, but alas - no answer.

    Last week I treked over and saw that, while the lights were off and the door was locked, everything seemed to remain intact.

    Got ahold of some random dude there on Monday ("Walt") who thought the luthier would be back soon. Said he'd call with status. Sadly, i did not hear back.

    So I called a few times today and finally Walt answered. Suggested I come pick up my bass because it wasn't looking good for my luthier to return.

    Sped on over and picked up the bass. Inquired as to what had happened ("Whahappa?!?") and, apparently, my luthier fell off the wagon a few weeks back and nobody has seen him sober since.

    Basically, if I had not picked up my bass today, I might not have seen it again.
  2. Fantastic Mighty Wind reference in your post!
  3. Planet Boulder

    Planet Boulder Hey, this is a private residence...man

    Nov 10, 2001
    6,482 feet above sea level
    I once had impure thoughts. Oh, and I pluck my ear hair.
    Was wondering who might catch that! ;)
  4. Is your luthier Fred Willard or what?

    Oh yeah, and I took a bass to a guy to have a Bartolini preamp installed. He did a horrible job, and then told me that the preamp was defective. It wasn't--he just didn't know how to install it. I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and they helped me to get restitution.
  5. Bryan R. Tyler

    Bryan R. Tyler TalkBass: Usurping My Practice Time Since 2002 Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    May 3, 2002
    I once took my old Samick five-string into a local shop for a setup. I didn't get it back for over a month, despite calling every five days. Just terrible communication and poor work ethic between the shop and their visiting tech guy. To this day I don't know why I paid.
  6. One of my friends breaking someone's vintage p-bass neck by tightening the rod too much... :eek: :bawl:
  7. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks! In Memoriam

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    I took my acoustic guitar to Daddy's Junky Music a couple of years ago to replace a broken nut. My kids both swear that they didn't break it. Yeah, right. Anyway, a new nut is $2.50, and new strings are $6. They charged me $100!!! I freaked out. The guitar was only worth about $150 at the time. They admit the price of the parts, but they said that they did a total setup on my guitar. Did I ask for a setup? I argued for 2 hours, left the guitar there and went to play at a wedding, came back and argued for another 30 minutes. Finally they let me have my guitar back for $50. Sadder part is that the guitar never really played the same after. I swear their "setup" actually raised the action. I really liked that guitar, but I gave up on it and bought a nice Martin instead.

    Chris A.:rolleyes: :bassist:
  8. god giving an instrument to the people at a music store is like giving your bass to a 2 year old.
  9. yeah some stores are great but so are some 2 year olds, gonna risk it? i wont.
  10. tkarter


    Jan 1, 2003
    Anyone ever heard the you break it you bought it theory?

  11. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    That only works when they've got something to gain from something being broken (namely you buying it). If they break your bass, they're not out crap.
  12. tkarter


    Jan 1, 2003
    they're not out crap.

    They are fixing my bass an break it they will be out plenty. As is only right.

    If you don't think so then you should find someone with a rep to work on your bass.

  13. Brendan

    Brendan Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2000
    Austin, TX
    Morally, yeah, sure. But legally? Nope. This is after all, luthier horror stories, not luthier success stories.
  14. RAM


    May 10, 2000
    Chicago, IL
    Um...I'm no lawyer (though my wife is)...it seems to me, though, that a store that has its merchandise out for prospective buyers to play have to assume a certain amount of liability. Afterall, instruments are meant to be played, and if you're using a product for its intended purpose and not mistreating it, it's reasonable to assume it shouldn't break. Right?

    Therefore, my belief is if it breaks while in my hands, I may or may not be liable to pay for it.

    I'll also tell you this, IMO, if a store owner ever said that to me, I'd tell him it's an awfully bad business practice to create negative feelings between he and I. Then I'd walk out.

    I know a story where a luthier did that to a guy at NAMM! Now the guy is a reputable dealer himself, and refuses to carry that luthier's products...;)

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