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Old 03-31-2020, 06:52 PM
Alan Carruth Alan Carruth is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 3,139

Part of the problem is that any fool can call themselves a 'luthier'. Some are trained, many are not. Some are 'training' themselves on your instruments.

Keep in mind, too, that 'luthier' and 'repairman' are not synonymous terms. I've been building stringed instruments for over 45 years, but it's been decades since I did much repair. I used to be pretty good at it, but maybe not so much now. A full time builder might get to set up 50 guitars in a year; a full time repairman would do that many setups in slow month. Practice, as they say...

It does seem to me that the first guy you went to was probably OK. The guitar didn't need much, so he didn't do much. He might have spent a bit more time explaining that, but maybe he had other things on his mind at that moment. $20 does seem a bit steep for what he did, but then, I always under charged for repairs. Keep in mind the old saying that 'nothing takes less than an hour to do'; how much of his time did you really take up, and what to you make an hour? He shops in the same stores you do.

It's hard to say about the second shop, aside from having a 'thing' about nickle strings. You left the guitar for a week, so you can't say for sure what they did or did not do in the interim. The assistant you talked with may not have done the work, or even been there when it was done. He may not have looked at the frets or the nut, but that doesn't mean his boss didn't. Are the flat spots in the frets still there? You didn't say.

Ultimately, this is the proverbial 'unregulated free market': you can decide for yourself whether that's producing an optimal outcome. One last thing that I'll point out is that good repair people are generally swamped with work.

Last edited by Kerbie; 03-31-2020 at 06:56 PM. Reason: Please refrain from profanity
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