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'GCenter Drama And Still Don't Understand'

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by mustBmtd, Nov 25, 2018.

  1. jamro217

    jamro217 Supporting Member

    What did you expect, really? After all, it is GC, not a local Mom and Pop shop. Sometimes you get lucky with an underpriced gem that falls through the cracks, but most of the time it's the usual big box store volume over quality mentality.
  2. mustBmtd

    mustBmtd Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2012
    understood. I'm not trying to at all give GC a bad rep. And I need to clarify something. I'm not where the bass is. I'm in another state and happen to have been looking for this particular bass, and it came up they had one in their used gear. This is what makes you miss about having good tech within a music. Where the old cats from back in the day. Would check out , clean up and setup trade in gear. It's like knowing what's going on with any bass or guitar even when your selling or trading.
  3. Knavery

    Knavery Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2004
    Westminster, CO
    I hear you, and unlike some others here, I think they should have reduced the price more. They should have pulled it down and checked the neck and marked the price accordingly. But what GC does, and I've seen this, is just hang it back up and let the next buyer discover it out for themselves. It's BS, but it's a big company and no one really takes ownership. It's just a job for most of these guys, so I don't really blame any one person on the floor. But, if they did tell you about the neck issues, that's more than what you'd get a lot of times. So, that's a win I guess.
    Omega Monkey likes this.
  4. Tim Skaggs

    Tim Skaggs

    Sep 28, 2002
    My meaning was that when GC didn't offer to discount the bass down in to your price range, they may have saved you a lot of headache if you thought you might be able to adjust the neck. The description in your reply to me indicates the neck was known to be defective and it wasn't that the previous buyer just didn't know how to adjust the neck

    I'm not sure of the value of a loaded Cort body and a set of tuners, but that sounds like about all you could expect to get out of purchasing that particular bass.
    Omega Monkey likes this.
  5. mustBmtd

    mustBmtd Supporting Member

    Sep 28, 2012
    That's all I'm saying. I mean I don't mind paying for what their asking. But if you've had some other person to purchased it and have been told there's a neck issue. At least have it checked out. Whatever I choose to do it may wind up being the same thing. Returning and refunding the money back.
  6. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York
    I purchased a used bass at a local GC that was in the store for about 11 months and wasn't sold due to neck issues, that the tech couldn't fix.

    I asked if I could see the bass, as it was a pretty nice looking Spector J style bass, played a few notes that sounded promising. So, I purchased the bass just to see if I could fix the neck myself. If not, I'd simply return the bass and get my momey back.

    Well, I took it home, removed some FOAM tape inside the neck pocket someone used as a shim, adjusted the truss Rod, tuned it up... And the Bass plays and sounds incredible, many gigs later...
  7. Guitar Center is like any other business with multiple, national outlets. Some locations are hopeless, some are happily staffed by guys who 'get it', and most are just average, with guys doing their best to live within a list of company policies and the like. To me, they're the WalMart of music stores: I go there for the basics (they do have deals on most accessories, strings, etc.), but if I'm doing serious shopping, unless the planets have aligned and they just happen to have a big ticket item I want on a sale, I always prefer smaller, dedicated places where I feel like my money is better spent. Usually I pass on going there, as amazingly, here in Nashville where lots of guys play fives, if I need strings, they stock a bare minimum of choices, strange.

    However, they do have a pretty painless return policy, which is a plus allowed by their size. Most 'neck problems' are rarely fatal in the hands of a qualified tech, so if you think $449 plus whatever estimate a tech would give you to straighten her out is affordable and you gotta have this one, roll the dice. You can always return it if it turns out to be more than what you want to spend.

    Or . . . . . . wait until another one shows up somewhere else. Your call.
    Omega Monkey likes this.
  8. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    I’ve never been disappointed by GC because i’ve never expected them to be anything but a big room full of gear with people scattered about to work the registers. I get strings and stands and cables and straps and any time i’m in the place i always check out the used basses and bass amps. I can evaluate a potential purchase hands on and if i like the price i’ll buy it because i know if i get it home and there is something i missed that’s a deal breaker i just take it back and get my money back.
    If you want the bass and you think the price is good for one in good working order, have it sent to your local store, pick it up and give it a spin. If it just needs adjustment you’ve scored your current want bass at a fair price, if it’s gonna take some professional help, get a professional estimate in writing and take the bass and estimate back to GC and see if they are willing to work a deal on the repair. If not, return the bass and get your money back and wait for the next opportunity. The worst you are out is a bit of your time, at best you get a decent deal on your current want bass.
    If you expect knowledgeable, professional, courteous service, find a mom and pop shop with a good rep. If you want to deal with a self service discount house GC is the place to go. Just do it in the right order and you have no worries about losing any of your filthy lucre, and if you play it right you can occasionally score a sweet deal.
  9. Element Zero

    Element Zero Supporting Member

    Dec 14, 2016
    As a former Guitar Floor Manager at my local store from ‘04-‘14, I can tell you that MOST of the returns of “defective” instruments whether the neck, tuners, pickups, batteries... where unnecessary. I learned in the decade I was there that many people have no clue about gear. Most of the time when a clueless customer returned something because they thought there was something wrong, we’d go over the item with them. Test it out directly in front of them and see. That’s usually when their stories would change. Suddenly it was “well I just don’t like it”.

    In the little remarks field of the return receipt you’d often find a “CODE ID 10T” as the reason for the return. Ah... memories.

    My point is that just because joe shmo said there was an issue with the truss rod doesn’t mean there’s actually an issue. However, the GC employee you talk to over the phone is potentionaly a CODE ID 10T as well.
    Clark Word, Krizz, redwingxix and 5 others like this.
  10. Mister Boh

    Mister Boh

    Oct 23, 2016
    Annapolis, MD
    Hit or miss with GC of course. I went in to my local one not long ago and they had an American pro P as scratch and dent (up high for some bizarre reason - like they have to keep it pristine or something).

    The guy gets it down, it looks ok, and he says I think it's a little damage on the back. It looked like it had been used to stop a bullet. A huge chunk missing from around the string through ferrule on tne back. Probaby an inch wide and half an inch deep in a wedge shape. Given it's proximity to Baltimore it's possible, but I digress...

    They wanted 1100 for it which is sort of ridiculous since you can get them for 1200 from basically anywhere. No budging.

    I think when the decision is made on the price of used the sales people can't or won't change them easily.
  11. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010
    So what do YOU think the bass is worth?

    There's another for sale on ebay for $729. Compared with them GC is being pefectly reasonable since it's way easier to return the bass if it turns out you can't fix it.

    You are coming off as a person who wants something for nothing here. Just because they have a record of possible neck issues according to one random customer (who is probably not a certified guitar tech) does not equate to the next potential buyer being entitled to a super hefty discount. GC still has to make money to stay in business and their profit margin is already pretty slim on the bass in question most likely. Not to mention they will have to pay to ship it to your store which further eats up another $10-20 in profit.

    So what precisely are you expecting them to do here? How much are you willing to pay?
    PillO likes this.
  12. pcake

    pcake Supporting Member

    Sep 20, 2011
    Los Angeleez
    something i keep thinking of is a number of reviews i've seen on amazon from guys who returned basses due to neck issues. in some cases, it's obvious that the neck just needs a little relief or the bass needed lower action. if they haven't really looked into it, the neck issue could be nothing or it could be a warped neck - but if it's a real problem, you just return it.
  13. filmtex

    filmtex Commercial User

    May 29, 2011
    Annsman Pro Audio Dealer
    Same here.
  14. gt96g

    gt96g Supporting Member

    Jul 25, 2008
    Philly Area
    GC is a mixed bag. I've gotten some good buys there recently. Got a good deal on a new helix lt and a few weeks later on a powered speaker to pair with it. But, I was at a second GC in my area a couple days ago and they had an american strat on the wall with a warped neck and stripped trusrod nut. They wanted 500 for it. When I asked the associate they said thay was their best number. He then explained the body was still good. Yes, but loaded bodies dont sell for $500. I shrugged it off put the strat back on the wall and just said "Well, that's GC".
  15. And sometimes, gear is mistakenly thought to be defective by the store. I bought a Leslie once, that was listed as "untested". They said they couldn't get any volume out of it, and the motors didn't work. I suggested a DI with a line level to drive it, worked great, blisteringly loud! I then took a basic TRS two switch guitar amp pedal, plugged it into the 1/4" speed controller, and demonstrated the two speeds and stop function. The sales guy was floored, and hated that he could have been playing it all this time it was in the store.

    Another observation, is that each GC store prices used equipment differently. You can look up the same amp, and find price ranges and condition ranges, that are inverted. I once wanted to buy a ratty Fender that was priced $200 more at the local GC, than the exact same amp, same year even, in much better condition at a different store. I tried to get them to price-match the other store. No go. I can understand it. Each store has a different position in each deal, cash or trade, and each region has different tastes and therefore market value.
    Element Zero likes this.
  16. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York

    I find a shockingly large number of people are utterly clueless about gear and how it's supposed to work. (See my earlier post in this thread for a great example).

    I'm talking about everything from changing strings, setting up action, truss Rod adjustments, and of course, electronics. This said, there are probably a large amount of returns at GC due to buyer remorse, and a convenient excuse "I don't like the neck", "the frets are too tall", "this is not a good bass for metal", etc., are given.
  17. Wesley R

    Wesley R Gold Supporting Member

    My local GC is staffed with articulate, educated, friendly people who are skilled as bassists. I cannot speak to the other salesman's attributes.
  18. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York
    One scary thing I find at GC, and I feel I'm seeing it more - or im noticing it more: is the scrapping of instruments for parts, then returning.

    I've seen used gear advertised on website with pictures, only to receive the gear and note pickups, knobs, tuners, different from what's being advertised in the pictures. I ask to see if there's a purchase history on the item, and in every case where gear has been tampered with, someone had purchased the item and then returned it.

    Again -- as has been said in this thread -- GC is awesome for those with knowledge.. Like a self-serve mart.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2018
  19. petrus61

    petrus61 Supporting Member

    I would find value in the fact that the employee disclosed the prior return. At least you know what you have going in whether you decide to keep it or not. The fact that they even gave you the heads up on it tells me the employee was trying to do you a solid on a bass that has a major issue. I’d have taken it as a hint to forget about it unless I was extremely confident I could repair the issue at little cost myself.
  20. Admiral Akbar

    Admiral Akbar

    Mar 12, 2013
    New York
    Another phenomenon at 2 GC's local to me is the phenomenon of "knob stealing"

    Someone thinks it's cool to steal the knurled metal knobs off Precision basses (including vintage), and amp pilot lights off of every Fender amp.

    I can't stand people.
    Valsmere and Omega Monkey like this.

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