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  • How do these folks stay in business?

    One day last week I stopped at the nearest mom and pop for some strings for a beater acoustic. There was a young guy in the shop to check on an old SG he'd dropped off for repairs. I stayed in the background, looking at gear and doing my best impression of a fly on the wall. It turned out the guy had dropped the guitar off in June and they'd put it in the wrong place so the work hadn't even started yet. Eek! To his credit the guy took it 'way better than I would have. I made a mental note never to have work done by that shop.
    Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
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  • #2
    At least they found it.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by gardo View Post
      At least they found it.
      Well, there is that. Anyway, it was behind the counter instead of back in the shop. The owner has been virtually tripping over the thing for more than three months. I would've taken my guitar and left.
      Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
      Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
      Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
      Member of the Schecter Society
      Person-2-Person on the Web

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      • #4
        He's lucky, I forgot my Aviators in a goodwill store, when I realized and went back they had already sold them - for two bucks.
        .

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        • #5
          Allot of small shops don't do repairs themselves. They often have a part time repair person or contractor do the work depending on what it is.
          I used to do electronic repairs for several shops in my area. They'd save up the work and I'd come and I'd come pick the gear up, repair it and bring it back repaired. Didn't make a whole lot of money doing that work though. The work was sporadic and your typical musicians aren't able to pay for repairs. I spent more time collecting for repairs then actually repairing.

          It may be that shop doesn't have the people to do the repairs. We used to get plenty of people who brought things in and once they heard what the repair cost would simply abandon the gear instead of paying for minimum fee for diagnosing the problem, or they'd give and OK then never come in and pay for it.

          We had a strict policy which we made people aware of and it was printed on their repair tag. Gear left over 30 days is considered abandoned. We tag on an additional storage fee each month which was quite hefty. They'd call the customers trying to collect on the repair but after an additional 3 months the customer forfeits their ownership for the unpaid repair. They usually kept it around for another 6 months but after that it was either sold off or scrapped for parts.

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          • #6
            AFAIK this shop does repairs in house. I've never had a repair done there so I can't say for sure. (Thank goodness.) I am wondering though why the guy waited four months before he checked on his guitar. Maybe he was waiting for them to call him.
            Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
            Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
            Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
            Member of the Schecter Society
            Person-2-Person on the Web

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            • #7
              I make and appointment for my guitars with my luthier and he will work on them that day. I pick up at the end of the day depending on the job. Fret work takes longer and there might be some spray booth time involved.
              Thanks Steve for 40 years of great repairs.

              There's a local shop in town, I thought I'd grab some mandolin string from him. He said he have them the next day and two week later they were in.

              I just go online for all my needs these days.

              There's another shop like 17 miles away. They will price match. The truth is I own way cooler stuff that that have in the shop.

              _____________________________________
              Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase.

              Join Date: Aug 2001
              Location: N. Adams, MA USA
              Posts as of Jan 10th 2013: 82,617

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              • #8
                A lot of them don't these days. Being edged out by the GC's and other big box stores. Not that I'd let a tech at a GC touch any of my guitars, I can do most stuff myself but custom stuff I leave to the pros, I have one local guy here in CA and another in TN. Figure he built the damn things so he might as well repair them. Had one for 6 months, Oh but when it came home, Yea Baby!

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                • #9
                  Doesn't matter if they outsource the repair work.....4 MONTHS !!! I wouldn't wait 4 weeks let alone 4 months. That's crazy.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by TattooedCarrot View Post
                    Doesn't matter if they outsource the repair work.....4 MONTHS !!! I wouldn't wait 4 weeks let alone 4 months. That's crazy.
                    I hear you. Right now we have a guy working on our house. He's over a week behind schedule and I'm ready to tell him to take a hike. I used to build and upgrade computers and once I got hold of a bad CDROM drive. I was running a small operation and didn't have another in stock. I felt bad telling the customer I couldn't get his computer to him on time and I actually had a more-or-less valid reason.
                    Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
                    Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
                    Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
                    Member of the Schecter Society
                    Person-2-Person on the Web

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                    • #11
                      As some of you know, I do repair work for my local music store (as well as some people who come directly to me). If you drop off an instrument at the store I will look at it within one or two days, unless I'm not available (and the store will tell you that). I do my little evaluation within a day (the infamous spreadsheet) and based on that, I call the owner and discuss what I think is needed and my estimate. I'll also tell the owner what the cue is and how long until I can get to the instrument. If there is something unusual - maybe I have to order parts or need to hydrate a guitar or something - I am honest about that and give the owner an option - I'll return the instrument and call when parts arrive or its adequately rehydrated.

                      If its an emergency - you've got a gig tonight and your guitar is buzzing at the 7th fret - I'll try to accommodate you and get it fixed, sometimes temporarily. Otherwise I work to the schedule, get the instrument back as quickly as I can, but still do the work to the best of my ability. If anything changes I call the owner, otherwise its back at the store on the day I promised at the price I quoted (or less).

                      I guess I just assume everyone works like that.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Freeman Keller View Post
                        . . . I guess I just assume everyone works like that.
                        I work that way too but apparently either we're exceptions or this shop is. I'm going around with a guy who is doing some work on my house and is 'way behind schedule with lots of excuses so it may be more common than either of us would expect.
                        Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
                        Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
                        Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
                        Member of the Schecter Society
                        Person-2-Person on the Web

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                        • #13
                          On a recent spare time trip to my local music shop, pretty early in the morning (ie: I'm the only customer in there), I over heard the 2 shop assistant discussing amp repairs. The "technician" was taking the piss of a recent customer who had brought in a amp with a scratchy pot. Charged him £40..... to squirt some WD40 (a sure way to ensure that pot is damaged f9r ever now) in it to fix it.

                          I promptly left that shop knowing that if I had any repair needing doing, it wouldn't be done there. And promptly told all my friend about it.

                          The worse of it, is that he was taking the piss of his customer..... whilst his short term fix ensured lots of problems for the poor paying customer....
                          Last edited by Les Paul Lover; 11-04-2017, 06:04 AM.
                          Ant the Les Paul Lover!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by DeepEnd View Post
                            One day last week I stopped at the nearest mom and pop for some strings for a beater acoustic. There was a young guy in the shop to check on an old SG he'd dropped off for repairs. I stayed in the background, looking at gear and doing my best impression of a fly on the wall. It turned out the guy had dropped the guitar off in June and they'd put it in the wrong place so the work hadn't even started yet. Eek! To his credit the guy took it 'way better than I would have. I made a mental note never to have work done by that shop.
                            3 of the 4 places I've ever brought a guitar to for repair have done the same thing to me. Sometimes it's just hard to get small businesses to take your money. Then they go tits up and it's hard to find a crying towel when their come-up-ins come in.
                            A '57 Classic, MIJ from USA parts.
                            HCEG Existentialism: I buy guitars, therefore, I am.
                            Well Dick, it's got a good beat, and I could dance to it, so I give it a 10!
                            I have opinions of my own,strong opinions but I don't always agree with them.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Les Paul Lover View Post
                              On a recent spare time trip to my local music shop, pretty early in the morning (ie: I'm the only customer in there), I over heard the 2 shop assistant discussing amp repairs. The "technician" was taking the piss of a recent customer who had brought in a amp with a scratchy pot. Charged him £40..... to squirt some WD40 (a sure way to ensure that pot is damaged f9r ever now) in it to fix it. . . .
                              Back when I was still building and repairing computers a lady gave me a Gateway that appeared to need a new power supply. I quoted her ~$35 for the PS (depending on how much it cost me) and $15 or so for labor. The problem turned out to be a power switch that had come loose due to a broken tab on a little plastic bracket. A drop of glue and 15 minutes' labor and it was fixed. I gave it back to her, told her what I'd done, and didn't charge her a dime.
                              The shop in question is my go-to for strings because it's close and the prices are halfway reasonable but I haven't bought anything else from them. I definitely wouldn't take anything there for service.
                              Official HCAG “Theory-Challenged Hack”
                              Member of the IBANEZ ACOUSTIC ASSASSINS
                              Proud Member of The Alvarez Alliance
                              Member of the Schecter Society
                              Person-2-Person on the Web

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