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Unlevel frets on a brand new R8


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Has anyone else found their new reissue to have unlevel frets?

Mine has a tall one at 21 making the bass strings dead in the higher registers when a low action is dialled in.

 

Having to spend £110 on a fret levelling is annoying when these things cost the price of a half-decent car and there's always the very real possibility that the tech will scratch or ding the guitar.

 

I would definitely rather not be sending this for repair work as soon as I've got it. Disappointing.

Edited by sunking101
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Just curious, what’s the action set to? Supposed to be measured to have 5/64” bass side and 3/64” treble for the spec Gibson uses. As well relief set to 0.010”-0.012”? If you can verify this is where you get no issues when you are set up like this, I wouldn’t worry. If you get funny sounds or choking out when you lower these measurements then you are trying to do something that it wasn’t measured out for when it left the factory. So if you “cheat” these values you may need special work done - which isn’t the worst thing. 

Overall a guitar to me is only a piece of junk when the neck cannot be made straight - truss rod does not work. Anything else should be able to be resolved very easily for minimal cost. But not ruling out that indeed, you may have an issue with a stray fret or four… could be as @merciful-evans said where the fret needs to be popped back in. That would be annoying, but after you spend a little extra might be a spectacular guitar. And if it is still brand new as the thread title suggests, turn it in if you are that unhappy and try again. Many guitars in the world to “fret” and sweat over this one in particular. Good luck and hope you find some way to be happy with a resolution. 

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9 hours ago, merciful-evans said:

Is it just the one (21) fret? If so, maybe its risen. It might just tap back in.

Have you checked the entire fretboard? One fret can be levelled, crowned & polished. No need to do any more.

Yep. A Fret Rocker will cost you about $10. I took a class and learned how to set up a guitar, Getting the neck straight as you can before your rock frets is essential.  

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All good advice so far.

Knocking down a high fret is easy if it's necessary,  you don't have to hire this out.  Finding one or two frets a little off, is not uncommon. 

If that cost you were quoted includes a full setup, that would not be a bad idea to have done if you're not versed in how to do it yourself

All guitars need a setup.

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What are the grounds for returning a guitar NOT purchased online? The T&Cs of the vendor state that they will give a refund for any faults within the first 30 days. 

 

The 'faults' I have with my guitar are unlevel frets which are demonstrable with a fret rocker and also by the fact that the bass strings are dead from the 14th fret upwards unless the action is higher than I would like....and also a ding on the top that I did not notice until I got the guitar home. However, if one zooms into the photos for my guitar on the retailer's website the ding is visible (thus proving that it was there before I bought the guitar).

 

The retailer has stated that both issues are par for the course with Gibson and nothing serious. If I want a pristine guitar then I should look at PRS etc. This is despite me having owned several Gibsons without these faults. 

To add insult to injury the retailer is not even prepared to fix these issues. They have stated that they will pay "a portion" of the fret levelling fee but will do nothing about the ding on the top.

So what constitutes a fault if these two issues do not? Their website clearly states that if faults are reported within 30 days then the buyer can have the item repaired or refunded. My retailer is offering neither of these things. They will "contribute" to the fret levelling cost but won't pay the full amount because not every fret is unlevel. They are dismissing the ding entirely as something commonplace with Gibsons.

If I were to sell this brand new guitar now I would have to disclose the ding and also the fact the frets are unlevel, thus getting a lower than market price. I must also add that I paid full RRP for this Les Paul Reissue with zero discount which makes this whole thing even more frustrating.

I am forced with getting a tech to look at the frets and the responsibility falls on me for getting this sorted, plus I am the one who has to gamble on the tech not adding furthing dings and scratches to my brand new instrument. What would you folk do in this situation?

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33 minutes ago, sunking101 said:

They refuse to take it back.

Only a Gibson’s frets are unlevel enough. Call Gibson and see if there is anything they recommend.

Edited by Sgt. Pepper
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If you paid with a credit card or with PayPal, put in a dispute.

If you paid cash or check, get the frets taken care of.

They put these things on a PLEK machine so I'd sight down the neck and see what that's doing.

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If it were me, I'd probably just get the problems dealt with and move on. Not worth the stress for minor issues. I'd be a little miffed that I was told I could return it with in 30 days then denied that right. 

I'm glad my standard 50's that I picked up a couple weeks ago was perfect. Although I know for a fact that I could have returned it within 30 days for any reason. 

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16 hours ago, golfnut said:

If it were me, I'd probably just get the problems dealt with and move on. Not worth the stress for minor issues. I'd be a little miffed that I was told I could return it with in 30 days then denied that right. 

I'm glad my standard 50's that I picked up a couple weeks ago was perfect. Although I know for a fact that I could have returned it within 30 days for any reason. 

Do you not have a Trading Standards department or an equivalent?  That’s what we have in the UK, but I’m guessing that you are in the US.

If the shop offers a 30 day money back guarantee and they’re not honouring it, they are clearly in breach of contract.  

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On 5/17/2022 at 1:28 PM, sunking101 said:

I am forced with getting a tech to look at the frets and the responsibility falls on me for getting this sorted, plus I am the one who has to gamble on the tech not adding furthing dings and scratches to my brand new instrument. What would you folk do in this situation?

Me personally? 

While I totally and completely understand the frustration, (I've been here)  it is what it is.  sounds like the place you got it from has dodgy customer service.  I'd not be doing any more business with them.

That said, at this point, I would get a setup and be done with the whole drama of it all.

The ding on the top, not sure what to say about that,  Sounds like something that we call "Shop worn" ! 🙂  in a few months, you're probably putting your own dings and scratches..  they are pretty much unavoidable on something you've bought to play.   

Find a good / reputable setup tech,  and let them take a look at it.

 

 

Edited by kidblast
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A lot of times I thought I had unlevel frets but the truss rod was the culprit. You have to make sure you are around that 0.010”-0.012” range because I’ve had the upper frets choke out one day. Picked it up after set down for a while and the weather changes make things happen with the necks here in MI. No one touches the metal to change the intonation or action, but the wood moves. So instead of twiddling with the metal parts, I look at the wood in the neck - I.e. truss rod adjustments. Usually will only require a fraction of a turn to make the world good again and voila! No choking out, no buzzes, etc. Always start with a properly set neck before messing with action and intonation. 

Edited by NighthawkChris
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