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The B-stock blues


Ron G

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I discovered a non-cosmetic problem with my Dot Studio. The neck pickup is mounted slightly to the left (low E side). Causes some weird sounds when bending strings. And it's worse on the 2 low strings because of the difference between the spacing of the pole pieces vs. string spacing at the neck. The guitar was a gift, so it's not like I had a chance to inspect before I bought, although it would have been easy to miss. I suppose I might be able to have it fixed under warranty but it'll probably be easy enough to fill and redrill the mounting ring holes, assuming the cavity doesn't present a problem. So much for the "inspected by Epiphone" stickers, etc..

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Stamped "2nd" on back of headstock

 

So how does Gibson/Epi or the vendor that sold it to your benefactor define "2nd"? If the definition is cosmetic (or anything else) but in good working order, you might have a chance at either a professional repair or a replacement (depending on your bargaining skills).

 

The person who gave the gift to you might also be able to return it.

 

I bought a "repackage" drum controller unit from Zzounds.com and one of the pads were defective (it didn't always make contact when I wanted it to, and it sometimes triggered itself when I didn't touch the pad). Zzounds advertised that their repacks were in good working order. When I called them and told them of the problem, they immediately asked me to send it back, and they paid for the return postage.

 

It's a bummer opening your new toy and having a problem with it. It takes the joy out of the first day.

 

I also bought a Casino on eBay that was advertised as in "Near Mint" condition and it had a cracked neck. If you twisted the neck when there wasn't any string tension you could see the steel rod. The person selling it (pawn shop) took it back, reimbursed my shipping fee and added a few dollars to the refund to reimburse me for my phone calls.

 

As long as the person who gave you the guitar as a gift dealt with a reputable company, and the definition of 2nd was the usual "minor imperfections but in good working order" you should be able to solve the problem.

 

Insights and incites by Notes

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for epi that problem would be cosmetic.. because it's repair leaves an extra hole, while the actual problem would be gone.

 

I'll drill an extra hole in mine just for the heck of it, if it makes you feel better *S*

 

that's assuming you are right and there is room to move the pickup.

however, if there isn't, you know the pickup base with the little legs sticking out is the only place it'll hit the walls of the route.

You can dig a little out right there on each side and be able to move it.

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For those instances where the difference in spacing is small, I have (once) successfully used slips of paper to shim between the screw and the pickup to move everything slightly to one side - and the shim was hidden down in the cavity. Its also not unknown for the assembler to bend a mounting, or screw - or even install the surround ring with one screw too far out away from center and pull everything else with it. Have you looked to see if perhaps the "B-stock" reassembler stuck in 2 neck or 2 bridge pickups? I saw that once on 2nd I bought.

 

Sorry, I'm sure you've done all these things, but no one told me about half of them, and I hate not sharing whenever it comes to other people's stuff.

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Sometimes you can bend the tabs on the pickup legs themselves to shift the pickup one way or the other a bit. So instead of _| |_on the legs you get this _/ /_ or _ _ type of effect.

 

Kind of hard to describe but if you search for the pics of my '96 Classic on here, you can see it in the neck pickup. There is more of a gap on the high E string side between the pickup and the ring. That's because the legs are bent.

 

I have since tweaked the bridge pickup the same way. I had to trim a little material of the pickup ring to get the alignment I wanted.

 

This won't help as much if the spacing at the nut is wrong.

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Zzounds advertised that their repacks were in good working order. When I called them and told them of the problem' date=' they immediately asked me to send it back, and they paid for the return postage.

[/quote']

 

Guitar center on the other hand was like, "Well the cat was alive before you opened the box..."

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James Paul (first and middle names of my favorite musician), your suggestion may well be the quick & dirty fix that I need, being I only have to shift the pickup less than 1/8".

 

Won't try to return because I've replaced the pickups (NO, I DIDN'T F**K IT UP MYSELF - it was like that), which would quite probably void the warranty, wouldn't want yet another sight unseen guitar and wouldn't want the guitar tied up at some repair facility.

 

It looks like it'll be an easy fix, plus it's not critical, at least to me - so I'll do it when I'm in the mood.

 

Thanks to all!

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If you can't get a replacement, you can move the pickups yourself. It's only a matter of removing the pickup ring screws, sealing the holes with plastic wood and redrilling the holes in the right place. I had to do it on mine. The high E string was not centered on the pole piece. It didn't cause a problem sonically, but I didn't like the looks of the alignment. Mine was far enough that the new hole didn't touch the old one. The screws are tiny and the hole you drill is something like .050". And, the mahogany is soft wood.

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