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Thread: Wish me luck...

  1. #1
    Super Toneologist octavedoctor's Avatar
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    Default Wish me luck...

    My erudite (and very patient) friend Ramin brought this poor thing in to me a few months back.

    I finally got a chance to get it on the bench today and come up with a plan of action, so to speak.

    Aside from the Les Paul trashed by Rich Parfitt of Newport (Gwent, UK) band the 60 ft Dolls, which looked like it had been through an industrial guillotine it's probably the worst headstock break i've seen in many years so i though it would be an interesting project for a photo documentary. You can see some of the problems we encounter during the course of the repair and sympathise or laugh according to your mood...

    Oh well, here are the photos.






    Completely detached headstocks like this present special problems. Although a dry fit generally allows you to get the fibres to knit well, the moment you introduce glue into the joint it tends to slide out of register when clamping pressure is applied. This is because the split follows the line of the grain which is generally at an angle to the flat surfaces on which the clamp acts, creating a shear force pushing the two components apart.

    I've started by drilling two registration holes throughthe back of the headstock, passing through the joint at an angle. I'll use two screws to counter the tendency of the joint to slide out of register. These will be countersunk so that they dont interfere with the clamp.

    There are a few loose frets around the area of the binding damage.

    The lower part of the headstock veneer is beyond salvaging. The problem with splicing a new section in is that you get a fault line where the new meets the old. Even if you can get this invisible, once the headstock is stressed by the string's tension it pushes up a line in the lacquer. Replacing the whole veneer would, of course, eradicate the logo, so i've photocopied the headstock and i'll look at the possibility of reproducing the logo as a decal.

    I'm hoping for a nice result on this one.

    More soon...
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  2. #2
    Super Toneologist Jeroen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Ouch!

    Good luck on that one...
    Guitars: EBMM Silhouette Special / G&L ASAT Special / ESP Horizon / Squier MIJ Strat / Squier Aff. Strat / Furch S23-CR / Taylor Baby
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    Baron Von Shred Zerberus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    AUA!!!....

    Good luck, though I don´t think you´ll need it.

    BTW I´d Consider getting a replacement Overlay with inlaid Logo and silkscreen applied... Gibson´s distributor has sold them to me before for verifiable repairs
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    Lemur-buckerologist JacksonMIA's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    That hurts to look at. Hope you get Humpty Dumpty back together again.
    It's hard to be metal in girl pants.

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  5. #5
    theodie
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Oops!!!!! A nasty one indeed!!!!!

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    Goliath of Tone Davey's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    damn. dude, you should post a warning or at least some space between the text and pictures. no guitar deserves that, not even a gibson.

    that is realy painful to look at . damn.

  7. #7
    Super Toneologist octavedoctor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Quote Originally Posted by Zerberus
    BTW I´d Consider getting a replacement Overlay with inlaid Logo and silkscreen applied... Gibson´s distributor has sold them to me before for verifiable repairs
    I think the distributors you dealt with are probably a lot more user friendly than the one in the UK, Rosetti. They have stated categorically that they won't deal with independent repairers on a trade basis. I've told them that their stance is actually against the UK's Restrictive Trade Practices Act their response was "see you in court then" The only reason i haven't screwed them using the DTI is that i am dependent on the good will of the retailer's i work with and I wouldn't want them to get caught in the backlash.

    I have a long standing feud with Rosetti from 1991 when i repaired a Les Paul for the student of one of my friends after his lodgers had sat on it during a party then tried to repair it with Bostik. I got a virtually perfect factory finish on it but the bostik had melted the truss rod cover, so i rang Rosetti and asked if i could get a truss rod cover.

    "Sure" she said, "what's your account number"

    "Don't have an account" i said, I'm an independent repairer, I was hoping we could do it on a pro-forma basis"

    "No" they said "you have to have an account"

    "OK" i said, "How do i get an account?"

    "You can't have one unless your a retailer. Do you want to buy some Gibsons?"

    "No, I just want to be able to get spares"

    "Sorry, you have to be a guitar retailer. You could go to (list of shops)"

    "but the first of those is where I work and i know their account is on stop. The others are all effectively my competitors..."

    "Sorry" she said "that's the best i can do."

    "So you can't sell me a truss rod cover? I don't want a trade discount, I just want to be able to get it to complete the repair"

    "Sorry, no; you'd have to have an account and I can't give you an account unless you're a retailer. Do you want to buy some Gibsons?"

    "but FCN, and Aria, and MiRep and Hohner and Laney-Headstock have all given me accounts, i've been in the business 15 years"

    "Sorry; now if you don't mind you've been flogging this dead horse long enough now and I have a stack of Gibsons to push and other people to p!ss off..." (OK, she didn't actually say that but i'm sure that's what she was thinking.)

    So i began a fruitless search for a truss rod cover amongst all my trade contacts from when I worked for Hohner. No deal; no-one wanted to clear their account to order a part worth less than a quid. In the end i told my customer I couldn't get a truss rod cover for him and he "negotiated" a £20 discount off the price.

    Then a couple of weeks later he rang me.

    "You lying turd!" he said (you'll have gathered my store of goodwill is on the wane by now)

    "Excuse me?"

    "You said that you couldn't get a truss rod cover out of Rosetti!"

    "That's right.." I said

    "You didn't try very ****ing hard" he said, "I rang them yesterday and told them what happened and they sent me one free of charge!"

    True story.

    Rosetti, if you read this, i'm still waiting for your apology...
    Last edited by octavedoctor; 06-19-2008 at 06:30 PM.
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    Baron Von Shred Zerberus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    OWWW... Yes, my experiences with MUsik Meyer were much more pleasant....

    THe way I read it: is one of your retailers a Gibson Dealer by any chance? Maybe they can score the overlay for you.... Though I can well understand if you refuse to put money in Rosetti´s account after that...

    If not PM me and I´ll see what I can work out
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    Toneologist neosadist's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Dang. I love my guitars WAY too much to do that! (and honestly I'm wondering if some guitar "stars" are a little sadistic)....
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    Just A Minion ErikH's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Damn, that's nasty. And it doesn't appear from the photos that it's even a clean break either. That one is going to be a PITA for sure. Good luck. I hope it comes out satisfactory.

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    Ultimate Tone Member Innocent_Bystander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Those pics make me want to cry. It's like looking at a crime scene.

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    Morkporkian Vasshu the humanoid typhoon's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    My oh my...nasty!
    “Time is a drug. Too much of it kills you.”
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    Super Toneologist octavedoctor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Quote Originally Posted by Zerberus
    OWWW... Yes, my experiences with MUsik Meyer were much more pleasant....

    THe way I read it: is one of your retailers a Gibson Dealer by any chance? Maybe they can score the overlay for you.... Though I can well understand if you refuse to put money in Rosetti´s account after that...

    If not PM me and I´ll see what I can work out
    Yeah, my host is Sound Control, biggest retail chain in the UK.

    We ordered a couple of tuners from them for a Gibson I was working on. They were the only things needed to complete the repair

    No problem they said. Six weeks later nothing had arrived and the customer was so pissed off that he came i one day when i wasn't there and just took the guitar before it was finished without paying for the repair. When we rang Rosetti to find out why they hadn't sent the bits they said "OH, it'll be eighteen months before we can get them for you".

    I'm still waiting for an epiphone truss rod cover we ordered four years ago.

    Yes, they are a disgrace to the profession. It's shocking that they still have the franchise to distribute Gibson.Everyone in the trade has a story about them, they are pretty much universally hated.

    Who's your distributor Zerb? is it GEWA? I know they're pretty amenable and their prices are good. When Arbiter were handling Fender they were quoting me a trade price for Texas Specials that was higher than GEWA's retail.

    PS i found a guy on e-bay called Al Inteso whose doing lots of interesting stuff for Gibsons; truss rod covers, pickguards, fingerboard inlays. I'll post the link when i can find it.
    Last edited by octavedoctor; 06-19-2008 at 06:31 PM.
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    Just A Minion ErikH's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Sounds to me like all the people over there in your shoes with the same view needs to get together and contact Gibson about this. Companies like that shouldn't be allowed to maintain their distribution rights.

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    Baron Von Shred Zerberus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Quote Originally Posted by octavedoctor
    Yeah, my host is Sound Control, biggest retail chain in the UK.

    We ordered a couple of tuners from them for a Gibson I was working on. They were the only things needed to complete the repair

    No problem they said. Six weeks later nothing had arrived and the customer was so pissed off that he came i one day when i wasn't there and just took the guitar before it was finished without paying for the repair. When we rang Rosetti to find out why they hadn't sent the bits they said "OH, it'll be eighteen months before we can get them for you".

    I'm still waiting for an epiphone truss rod cover we ordered four years ago.
    All I can say is

    Yes, they are a disgrace to the profession. It's shocking that they still have the franchise to distribute Gibson.Everyone in the trade has a story about them, they are pretty much universally hated.
    Well, we have a few of those over here as well

    Who's your distributor Zerb?
    Ups brainfart, german Distro is not Musik Meyer, but M+T (Musik + Technik)...

    is it GEWA? I know they're pretty amenable and their prices are good. ....
    Well, I really like the guiys from GEWA, as I worked together with them very closely during the formal schooling part of my training, which took place in Mittenwald (For those unfamiliar with it, Mittenwald is the German "Mecca" of luthierie and instrument manufacture in general, and also where most of the academies are).

    But every so often I really raise an eyebrow at some of their prices... but most are as you say quite agreeable, and the service is pretty good as well.

    PS i found a guy on e-bay called Al Inteso whose doing lots of interesting stuff for Gibsons; truss rod covers, pickguards, fingerboard inlays. I'll post the link when i can find it.
    Thx, I hate making headstock overlays myself, esp for things like LP customs... Not exactly a daily occurrence, but still a PITA to do
    Zerberus Industries: Where perfection just isn't good enough.

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  16. #16
    Super Toneologist octavedoctor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Quote Originally Posted by ErikH
    Sounds to me like all the people over there in your shoes with the same view needs to get together and contact Gibson about this. Companies like that shouldn't be allowed to maintain their distribution rights.
    Getting anybody to get off their arses and ACT in the UK is a major problem.

    They've just announced that there will be water rationing in parts of the UK this summer due to an anticipated "drought".

    Now let's see; drought is what you have in the Sudan; Britain is an island with the highest average rainfall in Europe and where no inland point is further than 80 miles from the sea.

    Don't the people who run the water companies ever think about how ridiculous they sound.

    Everybody just seems to be accepting this...

    Apathy is the British disease.
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  17. #17
    Baron Von Shred Zerberus's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    After all the time in Slough with GE, I said the following thing when asked by my manager how it was:

    "I think the Brits are the only ones that could lose a war due to apathy."

    I know EXACTLY what you mean, OD
    Zerberus Industries: Where perfection just isn't good enough.

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  18. #18
    Super Toneologist octavedoctor's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    In many ways it's quite an endearing characteristic; we wait with Zen like calm in queues of such length that in Italy it would cause rioting.

    "how are you?" people ask us

    "oh, mustn't grumble..."

    Just once, JUST ONCE i wish someone in the UK would grumble when it is suggested that we need water friggin' rationing!

    *note to self; must stay clear of politics...and don't mention the war! (that's a Fawlty Towers reference for al you non-brits)
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  19. #19
    Stratologist Pierre's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Eltham mon ami, good luck. Whether you need it or not. But part of me died a little. Those seem like crazy stories man...

    Eh listen, I'm studying operations management. When I finish uni, I could start up a guitar imports company specializing in brand parts, and get them quicker?

  20. #20
    Kablamminator ratherdashing's Avatar
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    Default Re: Wish me luck...

    Gahhhh ... that neck break turned my stomach! I'm really curious about how you would fix that, so please post more pics if it's not too much trouble.

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