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Guitar techs

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  • Guitar techs

    This might be best suited for the guitar forum, but I don't 'hang' there, so I thought here would suit me better

    It's been a frustrating few years for me. I've been competent enough to do basic care for my guitars over the years, but always found that the professionals do it better, even intonations. I can get the guitar in good tonal shape, but throughout the 80's and 90's and part of the 2000's, I found that guitar techs / pros did it perfect, not just good.

    I noticed in 2009 that my guitars weren't coming back as perfect, and started looking around for a better tech. None of the big music stores have an in-house tech anymore, or want to send the guitar out of state to an outside tech. I got a lot of recommendations, and I have to say.. every single one of the recommended people were either not as good as I am at simple setup, or they just intonated and lowered my action unreasonably to the point that all my guitars ended up with terrible fret buzz.

    One guy in particular.. I don't know wth he did, but my Epi LP came back with higher action and fret buzz. If I ever went back and complained, they would always offer to correct it, and every time I agreed, the guitar would come back even worse.

    Which brings me to my Strat...
    I bought it new, american model, it played like a dream out of the box, zero fret-buzz, perfect intonation.. rare for a guitar straight from the factory, but damn it played perfect. I had changed the gauge of the strings after a few months, and detected some slight fret buzz mid-neck, took it to yet another 'recommended' tech.. and I'm running out of techs at this point, I've gone through most in the area and haven't found a decent one yet. He argued with me that the heavier gauge strings shouldn't have caused fret buzz (I was sure the neck needed to be adjusted for the higher tension), and he agreed to 'look at it' and would check the fret levels, etc. It came back and OMG. Every fret buzzed. Two of the strings were horribly out of intonation, it sounded and played like an abused pawn shop fender squire.

    I was able to raise the action and restring the strat with 9's and get it back to at least a playable state, but it sure doesn't play like it did when I got it. It's only about a year old for crying out loud.

    So I wonder, what the heck happened to all the decent guitar techs? Anyone know a quality tech in the Philly burbs?
    Epihpone LP and Dot.
    Fender American Strat HSS
    (Loaner) Viking Pillager 60w combo (best amp in the friggin world!)
    Blackstar Stage-100 Head, 2x12 Blackstar Cab
    Marshall 4x10 Cab
    Pedals, pedals, and more pedals. Favs include Strymon Mobius, MXR Super Badass, Digitech Supernatural Reverb, Xotic BB, MXR Carbon Copy.-

  • #2
    Buy this book: and thank me later. I ran into the same as you. I now do all of my own setup work. I leave frets and bigger jobs to pros. I live near Nashville so I have quite a few to choose from that some of the bigger industry players use.
    Will work for guitars..