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  1. #1

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    OK as you all know I recently bought a 2016 Gibson Tal Farlow with a horrible tail rise rendering it unplayable. I believed it to be a fluke.....NOT. Today I bought a 2016 L5 with a neck just as bad. Frets pleked to almost zero fret height, unplayable past the 10th fret. Gibson even had the nerve to use a file on the fretboard to try and bring down the rise. Why would Gibson even have the nerve to send this out ? Needless to say Gibson just lost one of their best customers. I will NEVER buy a Gibson ever again. This not only causes lost customers but hurts Gibson dealers as they are out shipping costs both ways.
    Henry J....I hope you read this post ! A $8K guitar shouldn't have to have action like a $100 acoustic in order to not have the strings flat out past the 10th fret.
    Last edited by vinnyv1k; 08-09-2016 at 09:07 PM.


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  3. #2

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    ​Sorry to hear that Vinny, makes me real glad I went after a bunch of Heritages...
    So what you gonna get to comfort yourself after this disappointment.


  4. #3

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    sorry to hear that, and after you've paid retail for a few of them on top of it.

  5. #4

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    I cannot believe your bad luck. I will say that the dealer(s) must also
    bear some responsibility here. Surely a reputable main Dealer must
    carry out a thorough check particularly on a top of the range L5 before
    the customer receives it either personally or by a shipping method.
    It is a very unsatisfactory affair, and suggest that you contact Henry J to
    make him aware of the current situation, and that there are approx
    47,500 + members here who read of these instances, to their dismay, which
    will have a serious detrimental effect on Gibson's reputation. I would
    expect the dealer to also tell the Company of their concerns regarding
    these unacceptable instances, which have manifested on more than one or two
    occasions recently.


  6. #5

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    You should contact Gibson customer service about this.

    Danny W.

  7. #6

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    I think you should also post this on the Gibson board.

    My 2003 L5 which i bought brand new had a TOM with some screws not working properly. Any cheap student guitar would have a better working TOM. After posting this "bad experience" on the Gibson board i got a replacement in no time.

  8. #7

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    That sucks big time, Gibson is definitely in trouble when even its Custom Shop QC is that bad...
    That guitar should not have left the Custom Shop and probably should have been sent back by the dealership and definitely not sold to long time faithful knowledgeable buyer...
    If dealers don't send back their duds Gibson will keep producing them...

  9. #8

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    Hate to hear this

    The Crimson stuff I've had my hands on seemed to be top notch to me

    I expect to have my hands on another Crimson guitar later this week ....

    Hopefully it won't be in such bad shape ...

    if it comes home with me it will at least have the Guitar Center return policy attached to it


  10. #9

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    I am also really really sorry to heqr that Vinny. That is so much bad luck. That should not happen to a premium Gibson customer such as yourself. I really hope Gibson is doing something generous to fix it for you. I would still like to believe that this was bad luck twice and is not the norm in the custom shop these days. I never had a brand new Gibson archtop from the custom shop, but several Les Pauls and semi hollows they were all great. I truly hope the next one will be a real winner for you!

  11. #10

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    Try to buy your guitars from a reputable dealer like Dave's Guitar,Lavonne Music,Wildwood, Music Zoo to name some good ones.

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by silverfoxx
    I cannot believe your bad luck. I will say that the dealer(s) must also
    bear some responsibility here. Surely a reputable main Dealer must
    carry out a thorough check particularly on a top of the range L5 before
    the customer receives it either personally or by a shipping method.
    Just what I was thinking. The dealer is either:


  13. #12

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    The dealer certainly must have his/her back against the wall, at this point. To send out two top of the line instruments to the same customer that are way off...

    That dealer just lost an excellent customer for top-shelf guitars. AND, Gibson is eating its seed corn. You just don't send out a new guitar that has had its neck mangled like that. Heritage would have re-necked that guitar, I feel certain of it. Then, again, Heritage is a much smaller company and would have caught the error.

    If Gibson cannot get archtops right anymore, they should concede the market to those that can do so. It pains me to suggest this because Gibson invented the archtop guitar market in the first place.

    +1 on contacting customer service with the "two strikes" story. Gibson needs to know that they are bailing by throwing the buckets full of water back into the boat.

  14. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by jads57
    Try to buy your guitars from a reputable dealer like Dave's Guitar,Lavonne Music,Wildwood, Music Zoo to name some good ones.
    I did.

  15. #14

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    Let's be fair, the dealers have kids working there that sweep, clean, do the stock, even clean the bathroom for what $8.00 an hour? If I worked there I'll be damned if I'd give them $25-$50 an hour labor for free.

    That said Ibanez knows how important the market is and from what I read every git gets setup on the destination shore b4 being delivered to dealers.

    So my take is, it's smack on Gibson's shoulders to stop this idiotic slide into an abyss of customer discontent like the U.S. auto makers did in the 60's and 70's.

    Vinny, my last new Gibson was a CS ES330 that was so horribly messed up, the dealer could not sell it. Luckily I had the parts and know how to straighten it out but I blamed Gibson not the dealer.

  16. #15

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    This feeds my theory that when bean counters take over a company, then revenue instead of quality becomes the priority.

    The same is true of a company that is just struggling to remain profitable. If what they say is true about Gibson and Fender financial distress, then I guess I should not be surprised.

    I just can't believe your recent experiences have all been coincidences.
    Last edited by AlsoRan; 08-10-2016 at 07:58 PM.

  17. #16
    I am going to email Henry J. Let's see if he answers.

  18. #17

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    Gibson is not what it once was.
    Since you owned one of Jimmy's guitars, you might want to check out a Borys.
    Just tell him some of your Jimmy stories, and he'll probably give you one of his guitars for free.

  19. #18

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    Vinny, this is just so unbelievable. Best of luck to you in getting this unacceptable situation settled.

    I mean, jeepers!

  20. #19

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    You don't need to buy another guitar for a while. Now you can be selective. Visit guitar shops who sell the guitars you like. If you see a good one that you like, buy it.
    That guitar should NEVER have left that shop. They make make a lot of money dealing guitars. They need to add value. Shipping out guitars like that is irresponsible. I'm sorry bro.
    Joe D

  21. #20

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    Very disheartening to hear about your ongoing quality issues with Gibson guitars. It must be extremely frustrating to receive something that is so blatantly incorrect on an 8k brand new instrument.

    For future purchases I would like to suggest making a checklist of questions and have someone answer them over the phone ( speaker ) while going over the guitar - no text or email.

    Your senses will pick up on issues (in many cases ) by responses received. Any evasive or hesitant answers, or nonchalant responses are warning signs.

    Of course you should not have to do this on an 8k new guitar, but based on your prior experiences it's the only way to have some assurance of what your buying.

    I always make a checklist after reviewing a guitar of interest (that I cannot evaluate in hand ) and in most cases I wind up passing on the purchase - because of warning signs .

    Just something to think about - and I'm hoping you get this resolved to your satisfaction.

    Keep us posted on your communications with Gibson.

  22. #21

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    don't want to go too much out on a limb, but I have a feeling this is going to work out one way or another.
    yeah, Gibson is the mothership, but they can't be flat out stupid when it comes to PR.

    as we know, when Henry took over there was kind of a pall of apathy over the company.
    like some of things he did or not, he helped them regain their rep of making fine guitars.

    now let's se how this is handled today, when quality control issues are popping up.
    as silverfoxx stated, there are a lot of folks on this forum that buy enough Gibson archtops [as well as other models of course] that it should get their attention.

    if Gibson doesn't make things right here, there could be consequences. for example, do a google search and this forum pops up immediately.

    vinny's a great customer and doing the right thing to contact them, we'll see how they handle it..

  23. #22

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    its hard to know what to make of this sort of thing

    after having nearly new boutique archtops for ten years i got a brand new L5 CES from lucky music in Italy

    it was at least as well set up as any of the boutique guitars i've had and the fit and finish was absolutely perfect

    so i got a guitar that was WAY cooler and cheaper than the guitars i had been buying (none are a PATCH on the art deco heaven that is the L5) and it was ready to go. a year later (nearly) and it still plays absolutely perfectly with not a single issue in sight

    (or course you have to be a genius to stop the buzzes and rattles coming from both pickups - and that was not true of the boutique guitars - but i'm on top of that)

    my experience doesn't prove that gibson custom crimson qc is great; and vinny's experience does not prove the opposite.

    i would certainly never use that dealer again.

    you can send it back of course - can't you?

    don't give up on the new L5s....

  24. #23

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    Yet one more reason why I have no interest in owning a Gibson.

  25. #24

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    I think different guitar companies went through phases like this. I distinctly recall in the 70s when Fender shipped guitars and basses that were pretty flakey. I wanted to buy a Precision Bass in about '73. I walked into Veneman Music in Northern Virginia, IIRC, and took a sunburst P-bass down from the wall. The G-string was not even on the fretboard, due to the position of the bridge and the neck/body alignment. Yikes! It was important back then to try a bunch of Fenders (and Gibsons) to find a good one.

    Quality control seems to go in phases at some firms. The analogy to American auto makers is apt.

    One thing is certain: the US makers better not slack off this much on a routine basis or they will get clobbered by Asia--again. In the 70s/80s it made sense to buy a Japanese guitar rather than a US guitar. We may be right on the cusp of tipping the decision to Chinese guitars versus US guitars. QC seems to have gotten demonstrably better out of China of late.

  26. #25

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    I'm sorry to hear this story. Two strikes like that would definitely turn me off on the idea of buying another Gibson AND on the idea of repatronizing that dealer.

    I wonder how much of these problems is attributable to scaling up production using the Plek machine. I think we may be witnessing the era in which Gibson no longer has luthiers making decisions about craftsmanship. Instead, somebody just sticks a guitar into the Plek machine and a computer decides what to do. As we've seen, the results can be pretty bad.

    This story doesn't do much to instill my faith in the dealer, in Gibson, or in the Plek machine. When the Pleks first came out, they were touted as the answer to all of our neck problems. Maybe not. I'm beginning to think that maybe it's a good idea to avoid anyone who has a Plek machine, as it's obvious that the Plek will pass a reject guitar and people don't seem to be doing much supervision of what the machine is doing.