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Fit and Finish covered under Fender's warranty?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Skel, Mar 20, 2006.


  1. Skel

    Skel

    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    I bought a new MIM deluxe active jazz online. I can feel the sharp edges of the frets when sliding up or down the neck. The frets are slightly wider than the neck. I think this should be covered under Fender's warranty. Does anybody have experience with this type of complaint under Fender's warranty? I could return it, but I would like to "call" Fender on this unacceptable workmanship - I don't care if it is a MIM Fender, it's still a Fender and should be decent quality. I have no other complaints about the bass (but I *am* replacing it with a Sadowsky, damn it).

    Skel
     
  2. BurningSkies

    BurningSkies CRAZY BALDHEAD

    Feb 20, 2005
    Seweracuse, NY
    Most likely, this isn't a fit and finish issue. It can happen to any bass that's shipped from different climates...its called 'fret sprout'. As the wood contracts due to less humidity, the frets stick out a bit. Unfortunately, all basses (except for graphite necks) can have this happen, wether its a 300 dollar Fender or a 3000 dollar Sadowsky.
     
  3. Skel

    Skel

    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    Oh - didn't know that. (sorry Fender!) Do I need to take it to a guitar tech or luthier and have them file or smooth the fret edges down or would this be a valid reason to return the bass?
     
  4. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    If you're not happy with it you should return it.

    Fit and workmanship should be covered by the warranty. Frets sticking out is a fit issue. I don't think "fret sprout" is specifically excluded.
     
  5. Stox

    Stox

    Mar 18, 2005
    London UK
    +1 on that. I think most high end luthiers would probably sort it out for you out of goodwill, its certainly not a warranty issue. I would take it to a luthier and get it sorted, its not a big fix (or costly) by any means. I would contact the company you bought it from and tell them what you are doing and you never know they may offer to re-imburse you for the fretwork out of goodwill
     
  6. kjones

    kjones Supporting Member

    Dec 4, 2004
    Maryland
    and another option is simply to get a humidifier to use whenever your local humidity is low. Set it for 45% and away you go.
     
  7. MikeBass

    MikeBass Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2003
    Ferndale MI.
    Artist: Xotic Basses/AccuGroove

    This is not covered under warranty, but should be taken care of by the shop where you got it for free.
    It's considered a natural occuring item (can't remember what they/Fender calls it exactly) and it may never happen to some basses.
    It's a 15 min fix. My Fodera developed this after 5 years. Took it to my local repair guy and he did it on the spot for $20
    .
    Totally not un-common to feel that on basses in Michigan as the winters here can be very dry.
     
  8. tkozal

    tkozal Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2006
    New York City
    I paid $15 to have this done to one of mine. Plays great since.
     
  9. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    The downside to that is is you play a gig or in a rehearsal room with little to no humididty, the fret ends may pop out before the gig/rehearsal is over.
     
  10. Skel

    Skel

    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    Hmmm. I don't want this problem to be anybody's problem who shouldn't rightfully own it, and if that's me so be it. I have so many other basses and never heard it this "sprouting" thing, so hopefully I can get this corrected without it *reasonablly* happening again. I do live in Boulder, Co where it's dry for sure, but I got a USA Precision from the same people at the same time (and they're in Arizona where they invented dry).

    Skel
     
  11. tplyons

    tplyons

    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    It occurs naturally, due to expansion and contraction of your bass neck. Nothing you can really do about it except have the ends of your frets properly dressed.

    I need to have this done on my Strat... should only be $15-30 depending on location and the tech.
     
  12. bassbully43

    bassbully43

    Jul 1, 2005
    Not a big problem...I had a bass once that had this and I went out and bought a good small fine file like a jewler uses and in a few passes on the ends they were done like from the factory with no effect to the finish ...you just have to angle the file and be careful....its not tuff...some of you guys make it sound like its as tuff as cutting diamonds or something.
     
  13. jz0h4d

    jz0h4d

    Apr 26, 2005
    You buy a instrument made in Mexico and want to complain about fit and finish?
    You get what you pay for.
     
  14. bassbully43

    bassbully43

    Jul 1, 2005
    ehhhhhh....... read the reasons for this above mexico has nothing to do with it.
     
  15. Skel

    Skel

    Jun 19, 2005
    Boulder, Colorado
    The point is, I think I was wrong about complaining - as people have posted, it happens even on very expensive basses. I can only relate "MIM" to a Precision I have. I think it plays and sounds great, and I have a USA Precision to compare it to. I contacted the place where I bought it - they explained it was an easy fix, and were willing to do it. Since I still had the plastic and stickers on the pickguard, I decided to exchange it for a natural finish Marcus Miller with a modern "C" neck w/maple fingerboard and it's passive/active. As with all of the signature series being CIJ, if this is like the Geddy Lee as far a quality, I'll be thrilled.

    Skel
     
  16. Nino Valenti

    Nino Valenti Commercial User

    Feb 2, 2001
    Staten Island NYC
    Builder: Valenti Basses
    Yeah, a really good bass for not alot of money.:rolleyes:
     
  17. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    As others have said, take it into a local tech. They very well might do it for free or a nominal cost. A little hint: tip nicely (If s/he charges nothing, tip $20 - if s/he charges $20, toss 'em a $10) - having someone on your side on equipment issues is always a good thing.
     
  18. Dbassmon

    Dbassmon

    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    Ian gives sage advice. Good to have a knowledgable guy to call when you need some help or some good advice. A $20 bill will buy some good will from anybody working for a living.
     
  19. Ian Perge

    Ian Perge Supporting Member

    May 11, 2001
    Evansville, Indiana
    I do the same think with ink, and have gotten some major deals/fit-in's because of it. It's all about the psychology, but that makes it sounds nefarious - "relationship building" is a better term.
     
  20. syciprider

    syciprider Banned

    May 27, 2005
    Inland Empire
    Fender's warranty does not say anything about "fret sprout". If anything they still have to prove it is fret sprout. The warranty does address wood warpage, splitting or cracking but not shrinkage. IMO, any non user induced issue that affects the playability of the instrument should be fixed by the factory as it takes away from the utility or purpose of the product to the user.

    I still say, if it can be conveniently returned (as in GC), then return it and get another one.