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This is more a post for those in the know, but I will try to sum up.

First, people that have paid attention to my posts know that I have had nothing but trouble in buying or fixing my guitars.

Well, seven weeks ago, I bough a Squier '51 from a secondhand store after falling in love with the humbucker without knowing what the guitar was - I found out about 2 weeks later that it was a '51, and was thrilled - and took it to a highly respected luthier in Melbourne to be set up.

I was told it would take 1-1.5 weeks.

That was on 12 September.

I wanted a new pickguard made, coil tap repaired, and a basic setup. About 4 weeks ago I got antsy and bought an OG '51 neck to install on the guitar. Taking it to the luthier, I was told that they had a "flame out" on the bandsaw and they could not cut the pickguard until it was fixed. That was 3 weeks ago. Can a busy luthier go without a bandsaw for 7 weeks???

Anyway, my financial situation has changed due to a pending house move, and I have decided I am going to go to the shop on Monday and pick up the damn guitar and try to do what I can with it myself. This will entail me swapping the neck (and apparently one of the neck screwholes needs to be doweled and re-drilled), and re-stringing it. As a tech, I rate myself a -5. I cannot even re-string a guitar properly, much less adjust a truss rod and set action and intonation. But I am just sick of waiting. I will have a new pickguard made - or ebay one, and use the acetate I bought to make a new pickguard for my tele - eventually, and have the coil tap fixed another time.

Anyway, just saying how disappointed I am. But just to show I am not purely badmouthing, I will not name the establishment that has given me this grief.

Anyone who made it this far, thanks for reading the ravings of a tired, frustrated young man...

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Aw man, that sucks. You will get your head around the whole setting up business, I mean it's not really that hard... You just gotta learn what you need to look for and how to fix it.

7 weeks wait though is slightly ridiculous...

Yeah, I've had no luck.

I can put strings on, but I am pretty sloppy at it and have a habit of cutting myself :) I can set action too, I mean it's not that difficult. As for intonation, I don't even know what it is. Well, I know what it is mechanically, but I don't know what it DOES.

And yeah, 7 weeks is way too long, considering my needs are pretty simple really...

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Man that sucks dude.

Also this site has some really cheap and cool Squier 51 pickguards.

http://store.guitarfetish.com/sq51cupi.html

Thank you A LOT for that link dude.

Even with shipping, it is still cheaper than the sheet of acetate I bought (which was too small to make a decent 51-sized pickguard anyway)

Now I can use the acetate to make a new pickgurad for my tele...:-D

edit: 5 minutes later and I have ordered the tiger pearl pickguard. Couldn't resist :) Libtoem, you are my new saviour :)

http://us.st12.yimg.com/us.st.yimg.com/ ... 20_3734440

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Good lord, you brave man! Tiger pearl... are you sure? :P

Yep, it's already been ordered.

I didn't want to get the deluxe pickguard they offer (it requires modifiaction, and I want to avoid it) which left me with the option of white of tiger pearl. Since I've been looking to replace the white PG on my tele for a while, I didn't want to get another white one for the 51.

Besides, I don't really like the look of the big "refrigerator white" pickguard ;)

Hopefully it arrives in the mail soon.

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Cool,I got a Telecaster pickguard from there and its pretty good quality,much better than I expected.

I have been trying to replace the pickguard on my tele for ages.

It's a 2001 Squier Affinity, and I have bought 3 pickguards and NONE have come close to fitting. Gonna get one made, 3-ply black

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I didn't want to get the deluxe pickguard they offer (it requires modifiaction, and I want to avoid it) which left me with the option of white of tiger pearl. Since I've been looking to replace the white PG on my tele for a while, I didn't want to get another white one for the 51.

Besides, I don't really like the look of the big "refrigerator white" pickguard ;)

Hopefully it arrives in the mail soon.

This is fair enough, white pickguards are a kind of easy escape...

I'll be waiting for pics of what this looks like... Sunburst with tiger pearl should be interesting.

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I didn't want to get the deluxe pickguard they offer (it requires modifiaction, and I want to avoid it) which left me with the option of white of tiger pearl. Since I've been looking to replace the white PG on my tele for a while, I didn't want to get another white one for the 51.

Besides, I don't really like the look of the big "refrigerator white" pickguard ;)

Hopefully it arrives in the mail soon.

This is fair enough, white pickguards are a kind of easy escape...

I'll be waiting for pics of what this looks like... Sunburst with tiger pearl should be interesting.

That's for sure. I still can't picture in my mind what it will look like...

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seems like if its a functioning shop they would have 2 bandsaws or at least a scroll saw on the side.

but then again, its just plastic, and it can be cut down with a coping saw and then final cut with a router.

seems kind of odd to me, but i wouldn't jump to conclusions.

I was in the shop yesterday. Couldn't pick up the guitar because they finally started work on it. They said it would be done by about the end of the week, so I guess that means I can expect it in time for Christmas.

And they STILL had not started work on the pickguard ("bandsaw's still busted, mate"), which is fine by me at this point, since I have one coming in the mail, anyway.

I told them to use the acetate to make a pickguard for my tele, and they said they would. But the guy didn't write the order down, so I could end up with a pickguard for a Rickenbacker for all I know... :)

Hopefully, it's all getting closer now.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I GOT IT!!!

I went to the guitar shop ready to get all hot and bothered with my "I am taking it today NO MATTER WHAT" attitude, but when the guy greeted me in the shop, I knew it would not be necessary - either it was finished, or he wouldn't give me any trouble about it.

Well, it was finished. I was led into the workshop (truly guitar-geek paradise) and met the luthier who did the work. VERY nice guy. The 51 was ready, but the didn't call be because he was still working on my other order (a Tele pickguard) and he was going to call when both were done.

The 51 has turned out very well. The action is ridiculously, stupidly low (maybe too low) but there is not any fret buzz at all. The neck I bought has been installed with no hiccups.

Now...

I recently bought a pickguard for it (the tiger pearl one) from GuitarFetish, and well, it didn't fit. Not even close. Only 2 of the 11 screwholes matched up, it was unever to the humbucker ring, and would not fit around the control plate without sending the whole thing off-kilter. The luthier and I spend half an hour umming and ahhing over it before deciding it wasn't going to happen. So at this stage the guitar still has the original pickguard; the mother-of-toilet-seat white that someone cut into a strat shape and sprayed black. I can live with it for now.

The other issue was the coil tap, which was not working. The luthier said that when he pulled it apart, he noticed that it was a (I think he said) 4 conductor instead of 2 conductor (or maybe the other way around), but either way it was impossible to tap. This perhaps confirms something I was always wondering about: was the bridge humbucker the original? I guess not. Another thing about the humbucker is that the strings don't line up with the poles, to the point where high E does not hover over the pole at all. Odd, because the bridge is well set, the nut seems to be ok, and the neck is on straight...

All in all, it is now a good, well set-up guitar. not perfect - not even close - but it sounds great and is really something different. And I was charged only AUD$101.75. I had budgeted AUD$180. The luthier said he installed the neck for free. Lucky me, because this is where the bulk of the time would have been dedicated.

Also, when I was told the guitar was ready, I was in such a good mood that I didn't even think to ask why the heck it took so long, although at one point in our conversation he did hint that he felt the shop was taking on more work than the 3 of them that work there can handle. I even noticed that he had an LED alarm clock in his stall, and over the clockface he had put a sticker on which was written "YOU'RE LATE!"

As my friend said "all's well that ends well".

As usual, sorry about the long post, but this has been quite a saga and I wanted to share it. Thank you to everyone for their advice and help and encouragement. I know I will be asking for more in the New Year when it comes time to replace that pickguard.

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