Gibson Guitar Board: Do they setup guitars are the factory? - Gibson Guitar Board

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Do they setup guitars are the factory?

#1 User is offline   photoweborama 

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 07:58 PM

Just curious if they setup guitars at the factory, or do they come out sort of "raw"?

The reason I ask is because I went to the "Band Jam" thing over the summer.
In the middle of one of the bands sets, They paged me to the stage.
One of the guys wife gave him a brand new Les Paul Axcess for their 25th anniversary when he started to play it, it sort of disintegrated in his hands.

When I got it, the action was super high and when I tried to stretch the strings, one of the saddles kept pulling off the bridge plate.
I had no time to really setup it up right, so I patched it together so he could finish the set.

Later I had to completely setup it up. The worst part was the Floyd. All the saddle screw were set on the furthest position towards the neck. One of the saddles, where it was set for intonation, it was just barely hanging on. I ended up putting three of the saddle screws in the middle screw hole on the bridge plate so they would have enough metal to hold on to after I set the intonation.

Of course, if you are telling me they are not setup at all from the factory, then this is all moot...

But if they are setup at the factory, someone needs a lesson on how to setup a Floyd Rose bridge.

#2 User is offline   BigKahune 

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 09:28 PM

.
Gibson's proclivity for bad factory setups is well known.

However, this one sounds really bad. Possibly someone at the dealer had a go at it who didn't know much about Floyds (?)

Or maybe it was sold, returned, and resold without checking what the first owner did to the setup.

Yes, these things to happen with some dealers.
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#3 User is offline   photoweborama 

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 11:04 PM

View PostBigKahune, on 24 March 2011 - 09:28 PM, said:

.
Gibson's proclivity for bad factory setups is well known.

However, this one sounds really bad. Possibly someone at the dealer had a go at it who didn't know much about Floyds (?)

Or maybe it was sold, returned, and resold without checking what the first owner did to the setup.

Yes, these things to happen with some dealers.

It was a special order. Well sort of. From what I understand was it came in and they unboxed it and gave it straight to the wife. No dealer time in between.

#4 User is offline   btoth76 

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Posted 25 March 2011 - 02:14 AM

Sad to say, despite the quality check booklet provided with the guitars, these instruments aren't set-up at all. To make things worser they state the nut is processed with PLEK, but they stick (LP Studio 50's Tribute in this case). It is very disappointing that a company with such heritage ruins its reputation with not paying attention to such small nuances. Everyone you would ask will tell: yes, nothing compares to a Gibson as far as sound is concerned, but... (and here they start listing all kind of quality issues). With such a huge competition on the market, and at such high prices Gibson ought to pay lot more attention to quality work.
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#5 User is offline   btoth76 

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Posted 25 March 2011 - 02:15 AM

Still love everything they produce, but please... <_<
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#6 User is offline   strat-o-steve 

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Posted 25 March 2011 - 06:21 PM

My Les Paul Studio left the factory unplayable. There was no set up.....the neck was back-bowed, the bridge was adjusted flush to the top of the guitar, and the pickup selector switch nut had came loose and the switch had fallen inside the guitar! The pickups also were contacting the strings LOL. What a mess. It took me weeks of tweaking to finally get it set up right and now it plays GREAT. My Les Paul traditional, however, came out of the box perfect. It is a real crap-shoot. ;)

#7 User is offline   rocketman 

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Posted 25 March 2011 - 07:24 PM

I always wondered if there are issues during shipping. I just can't believe that Gibson setup would be this bad.
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#8 User is offline   photoweborama 

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Posted 26 March 2011 - 10:57 AM

I have no problems with them not setting the guitars up at the factory, as lone as they make it public that they don't, and that the dealer was to do the setup after receiving it.

As long as everyone knows what to expect, and what is to be expected from the dealers, then that is ok.
But expecting them to be setup and the factory, and they are not is what causes the problem.

Does anyone from Gibson read these posts are report back to the movers and shakers of the company?

#9 User is offline   rocketman 

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Posted 26 March 2011 - 08:04 PM

It's been stated on Henry's forum many times.
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#10 User is offline   Blindado70 

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 07:41 PM

I bought abrand new music man and its setup was perfect. Gibsons come with high action mostly. I don't like this way
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#11 User is offline   btoth76 

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 08:51 AM

These things are really sad, however after pro setup mine 50's Tribute got perfect. BUT considering that my - half as cheap - Ibanez (and my Tele too) came brilliantly set up from factory, it's a pity... [bored]
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#12 User is offline   Seasons 

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 02:57 PM

I know certain sites you order from do setups for you..It was either sweetwater or musicians friend.
The last guitar from sweetwater I ordered was very well setup, but maybe I just got lucky.
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#13 User is offline   dem00n 

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 03:12 PM

View PostSeasons, on 09 August 2011 - 02:57 PM, said:

I know certain sites you order from do setups for you..It was either sweetwater or musicians friend.
The last guitar from sweetwater I ordered was very well setup, but maybe I just got lucky.

Sweetwater sets up their guitars free of charge, you can even ask them what String Gauge you want it to be set up to.
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#14 User is offline   7C 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 01:54 AM

When I received my LP Studio (mail order) not only was it set-up very well but also in tune!

#15 User is offline   stein 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 02:49 AM

I am curious about this, because I have never thought that the factory was responsible for how well a guitar was set up before I came to these forums.

I thought the factory does a set up for their own purposes-to make sure the guitar is in spec and able to be set up right. Then, the dealer sets it up to make it "presentable". Then, the PLAYER sets it up (if needed) to have it play the way he wants.

I don't see how it could be any other way. First, the factory does NOT know how well you like your action, and no way to know if the set up will travel and stay that way. (and personally, I don't want the cost of a useless procedure that will have to be redone into the cost, I'll gladly handle that myself). Second, if the dealer will not or can not set up a guitar well enough for you to want to buy it, they should not be a dealer, because they have nothing to offer. 3rd, neither the factory OR the dealer can know exactly how I want my guitar set up, or the string gauge or brand.

I am just curious why would someone expect a guitar DIRECT from the factory to be set up and ready to go? And, why if you eliminate the middleman (dealer) that you wouldn't have to do a little yourself?

Do most expect the factory to set up guitars?

#16 User is offline   Superdick2112 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 04:54 AM

"I thought the factory does a set up for their own purposes-to make sure the guitar is in spec and able to be set up right. Then, the dealer sets it up to make it "presentable". Then, the PLAYER sets it up (if needed) to have it play the way he wants."


Exactly! Anyone who has been playing for a few years or more should know (or start learning) how to do their own setups. Most guitar manufacturers try to ensure that their guitars are reasonably set up before they leave the factory, but nobody should expect a factory setup to be THEIR perfect setup. Performing your own setups is not rocket science, and there of dozens of books & web tutorals to guide you through it. The money that some players spend each year on setups could have easily paid for their whole year's worth of strings, & probably bought an effects pedal or two to boot, and it always amazes me that many players continue to pay for professional setups when they could easily be doing that themselves.

That said, every new Gibson I've ever purchased (six so far..) has had slightly high action (for my taste), accurate intonation and moderate to good playability right out of the box, and every one of them promptly recieved a setup to suit my exact needs.

#17 User is offline   btoth76 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 04:57 AM

Hello Stein! Although I agree with You that final setup (fine-tuning to players needs) shall be done after the purchase, and I agree about the dealers' responsibility too - no questions about that! What we are talking about here: are the extreme cases. You are right: the guitar travels thousands of miles to reach it's new owner, facing many condition changes, so noone can expect the guitar to be perfect out of the box. BUT how can the factory provide QC booklet stating everything is fine with the guitar when it is obviously haven't been checked. How could they quality check the instrument without an initial setup, which wasn't done for sure. Or can we consider that the guitar was setup before shipping when it arrives with one-third of an inch action, with completely wrong intonation? With sticking "PLEK'd" nut? With switches falling out? Come on! One more thing: when I was a teenager I was dreaming about owning a Gibson - it seemed to be unreachable then. Young people these days say: Why should I pay two or three times more for a guitar which is widely known for rapsodic quality when I can have an Ibanez, Cort, whatever without issues? That's what they say! I hear them everyday! Gibson's sound like nothing else - we all know this. But these days when music in general getting worser an worser, there's no need for instruments with first-class tonewoods at huge prices - everything is manipulated now electronically if needed. So less of young musicians going to spend money on such guitars and with these issues Gibson is making the situation even worser for themselves. I hope everyone understands that my criticism was written in hope of moving things into the right direction. I still love Gibsons...
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#18 User is offline   Angellus 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 09:32 AM

I agree with all you.

Final set up should be done by the owner as there is no one size fits all.

but I have read many a thread with issues that btoth76 is describing and it is all to common. Faulty toggle switches and pots. burred nuts. issues with G strings.

Where is quality control?

when I brought my Schecter C1 Classic Ł550 about 5 years ago that guitar was perfect straight from the box, low action perfect intonation amazing neck relief exactly what a novice guitarist needs but doesnt know that they need.

QC issues with gibsons can be fixed by a number of people on this forum due to our knowledge of the instrument and experience. But take a novice guitarist reading other novice guitarists issues with Gibsons and considering how much they cost would scare them into not buying. A set up and finding a decent luthier/Tech is something that we as experienced players take for granted as having learned and experienced.

I think we should do a poll

how long have you guys been playing? me 11yrs and for the past year I have practicing to become a luthier. I had been playing for 3-4 years (novice) before I had any interest on the actual workings of a guitar.
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#19 User is offline   dem00n 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 10:12 AM

Holy **** a other Quailty Control argument statement thing?
Yes we get it, Gibson is making some shitty guitars, just dont buy them.
Bye. [rolleyes]
No one here can do anything about it so theres no point in even trying.
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#20 User is offline   AlanH 

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 05:35 PM

My assumption is that they set the action and pickup height to typical Gibson specs; add a smidge of neck relief; leave the nut slighty high (as there's no way of knowing how hard or soft the buyer frets chords); and then set the intonation by eye to the typical two rows of three pattern that is always slightly off. This could all be done relatively quickly at the final inspection/release stage.

Generally, in the store, you could get a good idea of how the guitar plays with the above. The rest would be up to dealer and the player.

Yes, there may be cases where the above doesn't happen but there's no way of knowing whether that was bad QC or something that happened in the store. Of the 7 guits I've bought over the last few years, 6 have been by mail order and they've all arrived in an immediately playable state which has just required minor tweaking to suit my own preferences.

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