Take a look at the Epiphone Les Paul on Previous Repairs page on this site and let it be a warning to you. Not all internet sites or manufacturers are prepared to check and set up instruments before they are shipped. If they have to pay a Guitar Tech then the price you pay is going to be a little bit more. I think its worth it, although it’s more money for me if they don’t. This Les Paul had two loose machine head nuts and a loose tone pot, both very easy to put right. The worrying part is the state of the fretting…Look at the pictures and you can see the fretboard has a radius of about 20 inches, so you would think the frets would have the same 20 inch radius, but alas no. Frets these days are quite often “pressed” in with a Caul. This Caul has to be the same radius as the fretboard (obviously) but someone who was fretting this guitar had not been told this. Or they were fretting something with a 14 inch radius before they did this guitar and did not change the Caul. Also the Truss Rod was so loose you could turn the nut with your fingers. Now the problem this could create is when I pulled the neck back as I tightened the truss rod nut the neck will move backwards thus letting the fretboard relax and lowering the pressure on the fret tang (the bit of the fret that fits into the fretboard). As the frets are not fully in the slots (because only the edges are fully seated) they could work loose over time. This also makes me think “how many guitars were sent out before the fault was noticed”. The manufacturer of this well known product has to take most of the blame. They should have noticed. The retailer should have noticed even though the guitar was very cheap, maybe £100 cheaper than anyone else sells it for. This Guitar is not fit for purpose and as such it should have been spotted and the faults rectified before it was sent out. Was all this in error or were these guitars sold cheaper because these faults were known about all the time. In which case BUYER BEWARE !!!
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A few simple things will tell you a lot.
It is very easy to check, A good internet company will advertise the fact that they employ a Guitar Tech to check ALL instruments before they are shipped.
When you beautiful new instrument arrives at your door Check the box, and ask yourself “has it been opened and resealed”. If it has, someone may have opened the box and at least checked if it is the instrument you have ordered. Check to see if there is some paper wrapped around the strings. If there is, it probably means the no-one has bothered to tune up and check it.
Is the instrument in tune or somewhere near in tune. If it is, then someone there has at least taken it out of the box and checked it will tune up before sending it to you. If not, how can they say that the guitar is in good working order. They should Tune the instrument..Check the electrics..Check the intonation..Check the neck relief..Check all nuts and bolts at the very least. None of this can be done through a sealed cardboard box. When instruments are shipped from say China, They travel on boats in all kinds of weather and humidity conditions. They may sit on the docks for weeks before being sent to the retailer. These instruments are usually made of wood and therefore are affected by temperature and climatic conditions.
If you have been a victim of these people, please feel free to contact me or anther Guitar Tech. Any of us will be very happy to help you. Obviously at a cost. It is better in the first place to get the company to do it for you before they send it. “Be a pain in the Ass” and ask them to check it before you part with your hard earned money. If it seems to be too good a price, It’s probably just a company that moves boxes around. Not a company who you want to give your money to.
Just recently I received an email for the guy who bought this instrument, he has email both the supplier and the manufacturer of this guitar on more than one occasion and neither of them has had the decency to reply….so what dose that tell you.
BE VERY CAREFUL WHO YOU GIVE YOUR HARD EARNED MONEY TO..
Tell me your horror stories….