Can A Specialized Luthier Really Make A Guitar Play Amazing?

Discussion in 'The Workbench' started by justinrhoads80, Jan 13, 2019.

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Which type of luthier is best?

  1. Independent

    18 vote(s)
    94.7%
  2. Sam Ash/GC tech

    1 vote(s)
    5.3%
  1. justinrhoads80

    justinrhoads80 Well-Known Member

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    Hey guys so I was pondering the thought, given the guitar to the right luthier can he turn a guitar that might just feel neutral or dull and after doing his magic make it feel like the best playing guitar of your life?

    I have heard from a few people that a specialized luthier can do this and such.

    What I mean by "specialized" Is a luthier who runs his own shop like GMW guitars compared to the guy working at GC/Sam Ash who is getting paid $14 an hour.

    Is any of this true or some hocus pocus BS?
     
  2. ampmadscientist

    ampmadscientist Well-Known Member

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    Yes but you have to give them an instrument which is worthy to start with.
    You can't expect a luthier to turn crap into gold.
     
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  3. Australian

    Australian Green Beret VIP Member

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    I’ve found that to be true.
    The best set-ups I ever got were from a well respected luthier.
     
  4. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member

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    Buy a Kiesel built to YOUR specs and you won't need to worry about it.
     
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  5. justinrhoads80

    justinrhoads80 Well-Known Member

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    Would a Jackson USA Soloist be good enough? I don't think there is really anything wrong with it except the fact that it is 15 years old and might need some more fine detailed treatment on the frets and other areas.



    I might as well give it a try then. The $90 or however much I need to pay for the luthier to tend to it shouldn't be much of a concern for me, especially if he could get the guitar playing to what I would like it to be.
     
  6. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    Stay away from the big chain stores.
    You've been procrastinating about this for a couple months.
    Just doo eeet.
    Be clear to them what you want done.
    Check reviews online. Anyone worth a crap with have great reviews.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
    justinrhoads80 likes this.
  7. DoctorZ

    DoctorZ New Member

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    Find a neck that fits your hand, you'll know when you feel it.
    Then give that guitar to a luthier. you should be happy.
    If you don't LOVE the feel of the sololist find something else.
     
  8. justinrhoads80

    justinrhoads80 Well-Known Member

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    Hey man I went to my guy at Sam ash and got the fret levelling done. Still did not resolve my issues and I am now down $140.

    Was very clear with the guy at SA and I don't felt like anything is changed, so I will no longer be going there.

    I have a local luthier that I am gonna try. Very good reviews on google.


    I feel that if I can get it setup correctly and have no playability issues with it it will give me a better assessment of whether I can bond with it
     
  9. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member

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  10. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    I said "stay away from the big chain stores".
    SA is a big chain store.
     
  11. Australian

    Australian Green Beret VIP Member

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    Try a good luthier. A good one will make the guitar feel better than you ever expected. Mine charges $180, but its done so well that you wont have to get it done again for ages.
     
  12. Micky

    Micky Well-Known Member VIP Member

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    Then again, you can't polish a turd...
    If a guitar has no potential, no amount of work is gonna help.

    But at least a good luthier will be able to tell you so...
     
  13. anitoli

    anitoli Well-Known Member

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    When doing guitar work if you choose to try it yourself do not attempt to get by with the wrong tools.
    There are some tools which will help you immensely to get a good result. One such tool is a string spacing rule. Trying to eyeball nut spacing isn't going to end well. Stew Mac is your friend.
     
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  14. Australian

    Australian Green Beret VIP Member

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    He said he owns a Jackson Soloist.
    To be honest I’ve seen this Luthier make a Fender Squire play like a dream.
     
  15. justinrhoads80

    justinrhoads80 Well-Known Member

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    I got this fret levelling done before I was advised against that. Learned my lesson.


    In all honesty I think that this guitar shouldn't be much of an issue to make it play like a dream due to the fact of it being a well made guitar. Just needs some luthier attention to it. Now if they can't get it to play wel at all then maybe I just got a serious flunk of a guitar.
     
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  16. ricksconnected

    ricksconnected Well-Known Member

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    nothing wrong with a Jackson soloist guitar.
     
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  17. nevermind

    nevermind Active Member

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    Can you describe what you find unpleasant and what you believe would be dreamy? If you can't articulate what it needs to look like/play like, when they are done massaging it, you're just shooting in the dark.
     
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  18. charveldan

    charveldan Well-Known Member

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    Yeah whats it [not] doing ?
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2019
  19. justinrhoads80

    justinrhoads80 Well-Known Member

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    USA Made as well. Shouldn't be a turd, but I could be wrong.


    That is definitely something to consider in terms of how I want it to play. I want something that has no buzzing, uses my 10-46s and the action on the high end is very low so it is easier to bend those strings and have the strings on the bottom feel nice and chunky when I am playing and doing palm mutes and chugs.

    I don't know really what more I can elaborate on with that since I am not that good with words and such in describing this stuff. IS there any advice you could offer me on this since I haven't come across a guitar that I want to modeled onto all my other guitars in terms of feel.


    1. Some weird buzzing on the open strings (E,A,D,G) and through like the first 3-5 frets on the E-D strings. Got a fret leveling hoping that would be solved, and still nothing works. Tried adjusting the truss rod to loosen it to get the right measurements gap wise in certain areas. I did a few tests that I used to evaluate where I want my guitar to be setup wise.

    2. There seems to be some buzzing/resonance on the bridge saddles (I have a floyd rose) and I have no idea what is causing it at all. I have gotten FU-Tone noiseless springs thinking that that was the culprit and still nothing. I have no Idea what is causing it and I have pulled the bridge out a few times to evaluate everything and making sure everything is tightened and wasn't rattling and everything checked out, but I was still experiencing these issues.

    3. I don't know why this is happening either, but the notes just die out/barely resonate when I am playing from the 19-24th fret. Mostly prevalent on the G-e strings. Wouldn't really know on the bottom three since I never play high up there on the bottom strings to tell, but I can check today.


    Those are the big 3 that need to be addressed. I have considered selling this guitar also partially because I also haven't necessarily gelled with it and such and one of my friends stopped me from a trade last night due to a few reasons and such and he has convinced me to keep this guitar and to just give it to a good luthier and have him do whatever he needs to do to make the guitar a "players" guitar.

    Plus I really like the guitar and it is kind of rare and the price I got it for I guess there is no harm in continuing to try and get it to become a player.
     
  20. geddy

    geddy Member

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    Sounds like your action is too low causing buzzing and choking out when playing high frets.

    Do you get ''false' high notes if you hammer on ?
    Hold down a string on the upoer frets and check if there's any clearance on the next free up.
     

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