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Buying at the store... Any tip?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Raman, Jun 17, 2014.


  1. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    Hi,

    I may very well head to the store to pick up a brand new bass next week (a G&L Tribute M2500).
    I realized that I've never done that, but always bought second hand.
    I'll be buying at the biggest store in town (not a pop and mom shop) because it's the only one around that carries the brand.

    People who have experience buying new instruments, any tips you can offer? Other than checking the bass thoroughly and playing it before: I mean in order to get a good deal. Should I try to haggle the price? Or maybe ask for a rebate on a matching case for example?..

    [As is, the bass is advertised at 1070$, but with a rebate making it 709$ (CAD).
    The original price seems a fair bit more expensive than what I've seen elsewhere. But all I can compare with are American stores, which normally sell it between 600$ and 800$ (US). Things do always cost more this side of the border. This said, it could be that they inflated the original price so it looks like a nice deal. Not too sure.]
     
  2. Gorn

    Gorn

    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Play it through the same rig you have at home, if at all possible. See where the bridge saddles are to see if you can get the action where you want. If you can, see if they'll give you a truss key to see if the truss works, or have them do it for you.

    That's generally what I do.
     
  3. jd56hawk

    jd56hawk

    Sep 12, 2011
    The Garden State
    Sure, haggle for a free case. Tell the salesperson something like "Hold on a minute" and then make it look like you're checking options on your phone.
     
    Raman likes this.
  4. Runlikegregg

    Runlikegregg

    Dec 31, 2011
    Brooklyn
    i would definitely haggle.
    be ready to buy and ready to walk away to get the best deal.
     
    Raman likes this.
  5. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    Is there a rule of thumb for haggling? Like a certain percentage you can expect to see dropped...
     
  6. Runlikegregg

    Runlikegregg

    Dec 31, 2011
    Brooklyn
    not that I know of.
    I just know they would rather sell the bass than not. so if they know you're on the hook they will try not to let you go.
     
    Parzival likes this.
  7. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    One thing I got going for me is that this bass has been there for quite a while. Also, if I trust the local stores and classifieds, G&L doesn't seem to be the most popular brand around here (almost all stores sell Fender instead).
    So my guess is he'd be happy to sell one.
    Another thing is I know I could get one for lower than 500$ if I go the second-hand route. So I can always drop that in the conversation with him.

     
  8. Malak the Mad

    Malak the Mad Over the River and through the Looking Glass Supporting Member

    If it's been sitting on the shelf for quite some time, you might have a little space to haggle. Perhaps a gig bag can be thrown in if a case is a dead-end of a bargaining chip. If nothing else, see if they'll throw in a set-up, unless you already have your own particular way of setting-up you prefer.
     
    Raman likes this.
  9. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    I'd probably be happy with a free case or gig bag, as I don't have any that will fit that bass at the moment.
     
    Parzival likes this.
  10. Needenaneden

    Needenaneden

    Feb 22, 2011
    At $709 they are probably making less than you think. I say if you like it, then buy it and maybe they will throw in fresh strings. $50 or $100 bucks seems like it doesn't get you very far these days so I figure it isn't worth haggling over an instrument that you really want and will enjoy for years.
     
  11. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    I just remember reading a discussion, written by a store owner, who talked about advertised prices on instruments. How stores are obligated by contract to not advertise below a certain price, but that they will generally be more flexible in private...

    [Living in Asia for several years in my early adult life, I used to haggle everything all the time! When I came back to Canada, I kept doing it for a while out of habit... at places like Zellers. That just didn't fly. :)
    The rules here are not so clear: Where and when you can do it. Over there, you just know it's expected and you quickly develop a sense of how much you can get them to lower, and how much you can insist before they get angry.]
     
  12. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    Every store is different. Best bet is to go in with as many other prices from other retailer (including on line) as possible, to back your reasons for asking for a discount - that always helps. For a bass at that level, I would want a setup and strings included.
     
  13. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    I'd rather go to my usual luthier for a setup. That store does offer the service, but doesn't have the best reputation... Strings though are an option (if they don't want to hear about a case or bag).
     
  14. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Connecticut
    Even a less than perfect setup will give you a better idea if there are any issues.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2014
    metalhead398 likes this.
  15. Yeti_carnage

    Yeti_carnage

    Apr 20, 2014
    Every store is different on what they will allow/not allow their sales people to do in order to give a good deal. Stuff I would ask for include a new set of strings. Chances are good it's been sitting on the floor, and this should be an easy to get them to do. Including picks, can be an easy sell as well. If they have a tech onsite, I also ask for a setup. As far as percent off goes, this can be hard. It's highly dependent on what they have in the instrument. The last bass I bought I talked them into 20% off. Generally speaking, 10% is a good percent to shoot for.

    The general rule for haggling is that you gotta be willing to walk away from the table if the deal isn't right. Generally someone buying a new bass has a hard time doing that. I find it easier to talk them into the extras. Strings, cables, picks, etc.

    As a side note, I owned a G&L Tribute l2000 and was very happy with it. I regret selling that one.
     
    Raman likes this.
  16. tangentmusic

    tangentmusic A figment of our exaggeration

    Aug 17, 2007
    Reno/Tahoe
    Don't be in a hurry. Don't let the sales guy pressure you.
    Inspect the bass thoroughly. Make sure everything works. If it needs a set-up, ask for one as part of the deal. Check closely for any floor damage. You may be able to use that as a bargaining point.
    Above all, make sure it is the bass you want before throwing down that kind of cash.
     
    Raman and SanDiegoHarry like this.
  17. SanDiegoHarry

    SanDiegoHarry Banned Supporting Member

    Aug 11, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    $709 seems to be a decent price - grind them for some strings, case, gig bag or something. But PLAY it thoroughly before you buy. That's the one advantage of bricks and mortar - you can test drive.
     
    Raman likes this.
  18. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    I did play the bass already, but plan to go visit to play and inspect it more thoroughly again before I buy. Thing is I could try to buy it used and have it shipped, but the big advantage of buying new locally is trying it before (no luck with local classifieds at all). In the case of these 34" G&L, some people have reported not being happy with the B string. So I wouldn't want to order one from far away to discover something like that.
     
  19. pastorjamesc

    pastorjamesc Cheap Ability, Expensive Taste Commercial User

    Jun 26, 2012
    Waco Texas
    Owner/Operator of Cotten Patch Sound Design. Burns of London Guitars and Basses retail. I do sound design, resetting, and education for churches, organizations, and small venues with no Sound personnel. Studio for "self-produced" rental use.
    If it's L&M then be prepared to hint (or ask) for a higher up. My experience has been that they have a lot of minimum wage kids working who have zero haggle authority. BUT the next level do. (At least in Winnipeg that was the case.)
     
  20. Raman

    Raman Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2003
    Montreal, Qc
    Different store. From my experience with them, there are 2 guys in charge of the bass section who've been there forever. I'd believe they're fully in control of their domain. But thanks.
     

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