NDGD (New Damaged Guitar Day) - Return or Keep with Discount?

Discussion in 'The Backstage' started by 2manyGuitars, Aug 11, 2017.

  1. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,662
    Likes Received:
    9,370
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    The X,

    When I asked for your opinion on this crack, I was serious. You build guitars and naturally would know more about this sort of stuff than those of us who don't. The need to understand this situation goes way beyond the specific case at hand. I have frequently shopped for guitars and have encountered similar cracks. Salesmen always say "it is just a finish crack". (I expect that statement to be followed by "this is a recording" as it seems to be a stock response. Some of those guitars are used and are priced attractively. I pass, because I have no way to estimate how far the crack goes. So if you can give us some informed information on this matter, please do!
     
  2. vintageguitarz

    vintageguitarz Member

    Messages:
    57
    Likes Received:
    37
    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2011
    The big question is DOES IT FLEX at that crack??

    If the "Crack" is only in the finish, you won't see any expansion (enlargement) of the crack. if the Crack is all the way into the joint of the neck to the body you will see flex and expansion of the crack and it WILL get far worse as time goes by.

    Now, Gibson or some other "neck thru body" guitar makers periodically suffer from cracks forming in the neck / body joint area FINISH (not the joint itself), pretty damn common actually for Gibson's even way back to their top of the line models from the 50's and 60's. I've seen a lot of 335, LP's, SG's etc with surface finish cracks right there in the same area. Lot's of reasons it can happen even on a new axe, poor paint prep, application too fast, less than best glue job of the neck/body joint that allows micro flex. You rarely see it on "natural lacquer finish" model, but always on "painted" models if it happens.

    I've gotten vintage and "recent" LP's, SG's, Firebirds, etc of similar construction method with cracked joints and I charge well over $400 to repair. I'm sure Luthiers in Canada are charging similar prices. Are you prepared to pop for $400 in the near future??

    Just being a finish crack is dangerous too. the crack will let humidity (dampness) into the sub-wood and you know what that means. You can "seal" surface cracks with modelers (like RC people) "thin CA" ( Cyanoacrylate) if you're real careful and not a slob getting all over the rest of the finish.

    Send it back .... and that's what you get from buying from Zzounds or similar online sellers.

    Good luck, eh.
     
  3. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,662
    Likes Received:
    9,370
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    vintage,

    The reason I keep this subject going is that I strongly suspect than an impact strong enough to move the joint enough to cause the finish to crack there on a new guitar may well be strong enough to weaken part of the glue joint. And then this may contribute to a major break with lesser future impact than if the glue joint hadn't suffered the initial impact. So to reduce my concern to the simplest possible terms, would an impact on the neck heel glue joint strong enough to crack the finish there be likely to weaken the glue joint, even if there is no movement at the crack?
     
  4. Oranjeaap

    Oranjeaap Senior Member

    Messages:
    8,144
    Likes Received:
    3,719
    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2010
    I guess im gonna go against the stream and say that is one of the first places a crack will develop from slight external stress, or even spontanious. Two pieces of wood meet, there is some glue, a far from ideal spot for paint to sit. Cracks at that spot, or parallel to the fretboard are not that uncommon. Especially the fact the crack sits on the wood joint makes me lean towards saying nothing was wrong with the guitar apart from the finish crack. Browse the web for heel cracks and you'll see what those look like and then compare to this blemish.
     
    rxbandit, RayTorvalds and Dolebludger like this.
  5. kakerlak

    kakerlak Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,189
    Likes Received:
    293
    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2014
    Just want to chime in and reject the notion that cracks along glue joints are uncommon and/or always indicate a failing joint (though this one may and the exchange for new is a no-brainer). You have two pieces of wood that will shrink/expand over time on either side of a glue joint. It's a super common place for finish checks to first develop and I don't worry about them on vintage guitars unless the joint is actually starting to open. I always used to see if I could slide a crisp bill into the joint when scoping out stuff at guitar shows. If it slides in, the joint is pulling away. If not, then it's still solid. This being so new, though, it's less likely for enough time to have passed for those normal shrinkage checks to start to appear and that shipping box had obvious damage, too. OTOH, failing SG neck joints usually open up like a hinge, so you'd see the widest gap across the back of the heel/body. Honestly, without this guitar being new and arriving in a damaged box, I wouldn't have given that crack a second thought. If this was a 10+ year-old SG hanging in a used guitar store, I wouldn't have thought anything of it.
     
  6. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,662
    Likes Received:
    9,370
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    Oranj and kaker,

    Your posts above bring up the fact that I have seen two different kinds of cracks in guitar finishes, along joints, that may indicate different things. One type of crack has straight edges. The other has feathered, uneven edges, and is often seen along scarf joints and fretboard-to neck joints. This second type of crack, to me, has a high probability of being from differential swelling and shrinking of the two pieces of wood or failure of the finish to bond to the glue joint. In this case, the actual structural joint would probably be sound. To me, the first type of crack (like that on the OP's first guitar) with edges very straight would indicate that the structural joint has moved, and structural compromise of the joint would be probable. So I guess I'm asking a question her. Is my analysis correct?

    As the OP has returned his guitar with the crack and now is enjoying one without the crack, My question isn't about the OP. Instead, It is to educate me for when I look at guitars.
     
  7. rogue3

    rogue3 Senior Member

    Messages:
    401
    Likes Received:
    488
    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2017
    ^ this. i assume if it was dropped,at the contact point where the pucker is , then i would expect the headstock to break?("pucker" only evidence,aside from the crack...did the strap button dig into the interior lining at that point?). Flex the neck...check for instability.If heel and neck/ headstock are solid...keep it with discount and enjoy that sucker!!!
     
  8. frankr442

    frankr442 Junior Member

    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2015
     
  9. Dolebludger

    Dolebludger Premium Member

    Messages:
    11,662
    Likes Received:
    9,370
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2009
    Yeah, IF the joint is compromised, and you start yanking, twisting, and pushing, you might break the thing completely. If it is something you are considering buying or returning, this might not be a good idea.
     
  10. Hack

    Hack Senior Member

    Messages:
    15,913
    Likes Received:
    41,607
    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2010
    Anyone claimed that "it will buff right out" yet?
     
  11. zamdrang

    zamdrang Member

    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    46
    Joined:
    May 2, 2009
    Great discussion on cracks. Glad they took care of it the OP and I mean no offense to anyone here. I totally get the appeal of discounted gear, but i've never understood mail ordering a guitar. I guess its about what you value. For me, condition, tone, that certain something you can't put your finger (or ear) on, those are the reasons I like guitars. I'd rather take a road trip and pick it out myself than succumb to convenience and gamble of the random warehouse pull from one of these so called gear stores.
     
    2manyGuitars likes this.
  12. 2manyGuitars

    2manyGuitars Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,933
    Likes Received:
    8,134
    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2008
    There are many Gibson models that aren't available in Canada. In fact, there's an agreement between the Canadian distributor and Gibson where they won't even allow US dealers to ship to Canada.

    I'm lucky that I only live an hour from the border and it's only 5 minutes further to the UPS Store. I can be there and back in 2 hours. The nearest physical store worth going to is the Guitar Centre in Syracuse, New York and most of what they have, I can get here. Plus, they're a 5 hour round trip. With these exclusives, it's unlikely they have them anyway so we're back to mail order.
     
  13. Jura

    Jura Senior Member

    Messages:
    347
    Likes Received:
    122
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    I'd go with the discount, that finish crack would appear sooner or later anyway.
     
  14. LeftyF2003

    LeftyF2003 Premium Member

    Messages:
    6,996
    Likes Received:
    7,688
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    +1 to this. It's hard to determine how bad that is. Have you confirmed with them it was not there when they shipped it, I.E. that's why they called it a blem?
     
  15. moreles

    moreles Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,125
    Likes Received:
    751
    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2011
    We're all just giving opinions of a picture. If you are unprepared to deal with uncertainty, you should return it for sure. On the other hand, I have seen many guitars with cracks in the finish around the neck, almost all of them caused by a sharp blow that caused some flex, cracked the finish, and did no structural damage. The pasts saying that a neck should not flex are correct, but under some conditions -- bumps -- they do, and flexing is better than breaking. If I had the guitar in hand, I would get my tuner, try putting pressure on the neck from various directions, and see if I could detect either actual movement or excess flexing, which would show via some detuning. If I did not spot such indications of a larger problem, and if I got a further discount, I would not myself hesitate to keep the guitar if I really liked it otherwise. But I'm happy enough to make repairs and fix finishes, so it's not the end of the world if I guess wrong on damage. Sorry that this is a pain in the butt for you.
     
  16. bluesondoor

    bluesondoor Member

    Messages:
    93
    Likes Received:
    71
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2017
    I think the only time a crack at the neck is ever really a "finish crack" is when it's being described by the guy selling it to you.
     
  17. RocknRollShakeUp

    RocknRollShakeUp Member

    Messages:
    76
    Likes Received:
    71
    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2008
    LMAO! Not even if it was Pete's SG?
     
    Who likes this.
  18. Who

    Who are you? Who who who who.... Premium Member

    Messages:
    12,348
    Likes Received:
    18,452
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2012
    if you ever consider making that drive again.....make sure to go to Gorham Brothers, just down the street.

    They had the balls to open a guitar store on the same strip as a GC. Started small. Within two years, they expanded the store, put in a stage, and became the best music store in the area.

    [​IMG]


    And....no matter what part of Canada you're coming from....if you are going to Syracuse, you MUST go to Rochester. House of Guitars. I believe they are the highest volume non-chain Gibson dealer in the country.

    {{copied from another post of mine}}}

    Due to space constraints, it would probably take 50 pictures from different angles, to even begin to show all the equipment they have.

    [​IMG]

    They must have a million pieces of voinyl
    [​IMG]

    Just this cabinet has more high-end guitars than all of the chain-stores in NY, combined:
    [​IMG]



    When you get there.... ask for Curt. Tell him you heard about the place from MyLesPaul, and drove down from Canada. Ask to see the tour of downstairs, and ask if he has any special guitars that aren't on the sales floor.

    https://www.mylespaul.com/threads/house-of-guitars-sponsor.191297/
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
    Thumpalumpacus and Blue Blood like this.
  19. Who

    Who are you? Who who who who.... Premium Member

    Messages:
    12,348
    Likes Received:
    18,452
    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2012
    When you're at the HoG...ask to see this sign that hangs on the wall.....the HoG has some serious history....

    [​IMG]


    My other pic of the vinyl collection shows less than 1/4 of that part of the store. Here's a surround shot:
    [​IMG]


    A music or guitar fan can speaks an entire day, there. Find one of the owners, and ask him about the musician signatures and pictures that are on the walls. A lot of names you know have shopped that store in the 50 years they've been in business.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
  20. Scream And Fly

    Scream And Fly Senior Member

    Messages:
    495
    Likes Received:
    279
    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2007
    Those cracks are extremely common in Gibsons. My brand new Explorer had it. I reported it to Musicians Friend and they gave me the same options. In the end, I took a $200 discount and kept it. This was back in 2010. The guitar has been perfect.
     

Share This Page