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Jammin' Joe

New or used?


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The only guitars I bought new were my first two basses, a Kay SG/EB copy and a Jazz Bass copy. Ever since then all the guitars I bought were used. Some were near mint, others were well used. I only had one bad experience buying used. It was a LP Special that no matter what I did it smelled like cigarettes and beer. I even stripped the all paint off and it still smelled. So I traded it away.

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I'm up to 8 guitars now.

My Gibsons ( 2 LP's, 1 ES-339)were bought new.

Guild 12 string new.

Taylor 6 string AE new

70's Japanese LP copy new.

Giannini 6 string acoustic used.

Suhr Strat used. (About 3 months old)Like new.

I prefer new but won't turn my nose up to a fine used instrument either.

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While I don't DO "Beat up" guitars, a good solid player, and well care for "Used" guitar,

is totaly fine, with me...if it has everything I want.

 

My biggest "problem" with "used" (especially "Vintage" used) is not that it's "used,"

it's that it often costs more (to WAY more) than I want (or CAN afford) to spend, and

"New" is actually less expensive, in those cases. So..either way, works for me!

 

CB

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I have never bought a new guitar in my life, and never plan to. Even if you buy a used guitar in excellent to mint condition, you can count on having it discounted significantly. This is especially true, I have found, with import guitars and USA-made guitars with limited demand (think certain models of Hamer and Heritage). You just have to be patient and shop around.

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I've never had a new guitar. I like the mojo of a guitar that's been loved before. Also, I prefer how guitars were crafted in the olden days...heavy as those f-ers are...

 

I've been on the market for a Strat and I saw a '79 with a large scuff but I still got GAS...new guitars don't give me GAS,THANK GOD.

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The only "new" guitar I ever bought was an Epi Les Paul Standard, back in 2008. I never bonded with that guitar, and ended up giving it to a friend as a starter guitar.

 

My next guitar was a '93 Seagull SM6 dreadnought, which obviously wasn't new (I was Born in '93). I still have and play that guitar every day. A few dings and scratches here and there, but I like a well-used guitar.

 

After that I bought my '64 Gibson Melody Maker D. Best electric I've ever played. Nowhere Near "mint" condition. This guitar was Played. And I believe that's the reason it sounds better than any "mint" example from the period that I've played. I will take this guitar with me to the grave.

 

Next was a Takamine G5013SVFT. Made for one year (2007) and discontinued. Bought it in 2012 I believe. It also had a couple small dings, but I love the look and sound of the guitar. And much more comfortable than my dreadnought.

 

And lastly was my Charvel Pro Mod SoCal. This one was discontinued only a year or two ago, and was a "store guitar" that had been played and played but never bought. So I picked it up at a bargain price. Plays and (soon will) sound as good as any American Strat.

 

As you can see, I have a preference for used instruments. You generally get a better deal, you can get your hands on discontinued models which would otherwise be impossible to find New. And you have the added benefit of somebody else "breaking it in" naturally. I hate "relics" as much as the next guy, but I have no qualms about buying a guitar that's been honestly, naturally aged. So, used all the way!

 

-Ryan

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New for me. Never bought a used one. Probably never will.

 

Never bought a new guitar. I now have eleven, four vintage (ranging from 1936 to 1969), and have yet to buy a lemon. Which I guess may happen sooner or later... [sad]

 

Point bein, it's not a no-brainer, Ace...instead, what I think has worked well is patiently doin more homework than usual before I start lookin. If I think I want a Les Paul Special, I start reading reviews, asking friends, talking to guitar shop pros, playin a few. I wanna learn the quirks of the LPSpecial, precisely what issues to look for, as well as the current market. I browse magazine ads and eBay.

 

(For example, I learned the black LPSpecials from the late 1990s have P100s, not P90s...never woulda known.)

 

When I find one that might be a good deal, I ask lots of questions...especially on eBay, I try to get to know the seller a little, and how he responds to very specific questions tells ya a lot about his/her character.

 

One strategy I've not tried but others have had good experiences, is becoming active on a Forum, gettin to know some others on the Forum, and buying from within that network. Still doin yer homework and bein cautious, of course.

 

I'd like to hear others' cautions and what's worked.

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While most of my guitars over the years have been bought new, I don't really care.

The reason I have mostly new is because anytime I went to buy a particular guitar, I didn't have a used option.

 

Nothing wrong with used at all.. And around here, resale value is bad. And people who try and get close to new price

end up not selling until they drop their price.

 

So used if I can get what I'm looking for.

New if I can't find a nice used one.

 

And I refuse to pay thousands of dollars for an old guitar just because it's old. I think that is ridiculous.

And is why I will never be able to replace my 69 LP Custom.

 

Unless of course,, I win the lottery .. [flapper]

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It depends...

 

Where I live there are few enough "new" guitars regardless. No Gibbie dealer except a day's drive. An Epi, Eastman, etc., dealer a bit over an hour's drive.

 

I won't buy a guitar over $1,000 without playing it. The most I've paid the past 30 years has been around $5-600. Prior to that some nice stuff like new Gretsches and Guilds and high-end for the day Ovation AEs, but ... that was in a different era and a different part of the country and I had a different set of wherewithall.

 

The past 10 I have some Epis bought new, an Eastman jazzer bought new and a Gretsch jazzer bought used.

 

If I'm likely to get a Gibson in the foreseeable future, it'd have to be used.

 

m

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It really doesn't matter to me, as the main considerations are price vs use.

 

For price, one consideration is how much I could sell it for, as well as how much I have to pay to get the same type or model. For instance, if I know they sell for something like 900 bucks on the used market, I consider anything above that my "loss", or the cost for the pleasure of buying it.

 

So, it would SEEM that used is the way to go, as there is less depreciation (if any), and don't care about a few dings as I think they are going to get them anyway, and in my experience all guitars can usually be polished and dolled up to look good anyway.

 

But that's not how it usually works out. When I'm on the hunt, I'm looking for "the" sample or particular guitar the does it, that fits what I want. It isn't one thing, or a set thing, but I know it when I feel it. That's what a guitar is all about, ain't it? So, if it's new, I am totally aware or the loss if I sell, but glad to pay it.

 

That's one reason I can't understand why anyone would prefer to buy new over the internet. If it's not a specific one you played and liked, it's just any guitar. Why not take the chance on a used one and not loose money?

 

Couple other things: "mint" or completely uplayed or zero dings holds no value to me. I only buy guitars I am going to play. Unless it is a collector piece, or not going to be played, there is no "value" or reason an unplayed guitar is worth more.

 

Wear, however, is wear. Wear on a guitar devalues it accordingly, not good, not bad, just is. I don't care if it is done from playing or done at a factory, "relics" are worth less than good condition.

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I think I've only ever bought 4 guitars new in my 37 years of playing and that includes the very first guitar I ever bought. Oddly enough and by way of being a 'Bookend' the last guitar I bought was also new.

 

I still have three of those four. The two mentioned above and another very early purchase, my first acoustic back in 1980.

 

All the rest have been second-hand.

 

P.

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With a high-quality instrument used may be better then new, especially if it's been taken care of. I may rather have a new one so I can return it if I don't like it. The only exceptions would be some thing that I've had the same model of before or like I said, if it's older and in great shape and sounds/feels great.

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Well, Honestly its gonna come down to a few things

 

your price limit

the guitar you want

how much you trust the seller.

 

I bought my V off ebay in '09 from a its previous owner in PA. It arrived and i fell in love with it. the seller packaged it well, it had no smells on it. played flawlessly. It cost me about 500$, i cant remember what the shipping was. sent me a bag but what was awesome was he also sent(as a freebie) was a nice tunner which i still use! a 20foot cable and a very nice franklin strap. the guitar had straplocks installed by him previously to him selling it.

 

My advice, buying a guitar off Ebay used. just do your research and dont be afraid to contact the seller to ask stuff. I talked to the guy for about 2 weeks before i finally bought it off him.

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Never bought used. I really don't have any good reason not to though. I never bought a used car or house either (built 3 homes and a cottage). I guess I'm a creature of habit.

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I've only bought new one time and that was my 2000 Gibson Les Paul Classic back in 2001. Other then that I have bought used.

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I did some quick math, and memory search. It seems my guitar purchases over the last 40+ years have been at a ratio of 2:1 (used-new). Of the guitars I have kept, the same ratio holds true, with a 60% retention rate.

 

My first couple of "real" guitars were used because that's all I could AFFORD with lawn mowing money. When the "vintage" craze hit in the early/mid 70's I realized I had bought a couple of very collectible "vintage" instruments by accident (or good taste). When the time came that I could afford to buy new guitars, I bought because of the merit (and price) of the individual instrument, sometimes new, many times not.

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I have a combination of new and used... Have bought a couple of sign u seen or better played. For the most part my new guitar bought sight unseen have been great guitars except for one. I have bought used from ebay as well, sight unseen and have always had good luck. Don't think I will by a guitar ever again without playing it first though...

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