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Building Custom Tele? Better wanna keep it.

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by phillip lee, Jul 13, 2011.

  1. phillip lee

    phillip lee TDPRI Member

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    This has been discussed before to some extent but I wanted to rant a little bit about the "Custom" guitar Market.
    There isn't one.
    It doesn't matter that you used the best components, assembled it with the upmost care, that it is jaw dropping gorgeous and plays and sounds like a dream.
    If you go to sell it, especially in todays Market, you might pound some pavement looking for a Buyer. Most will tell you to pound sand. If they can't look it up in a little "Trade" Book and acertain a value, forget it.
    There are too many guitars and not nearly enough players( buyers). If the magic name is not on the headstock, with a little number, they won't even plug it in.
    Yeah, its fun looking at all the bodies and necks, picking out components and such. Wanna sell it later on?
    WE DONT WANT IT. And if it is a Name Brand we want to rip you off.
     
  2. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    So, get out the screwdriver and sell it easily... :D

    You'll get more even for a Fender in parts.
     
  3. mjb1967

    mjb1967 Tele-Holic

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    my partscaster cost considerably more than a Fender..... I bought it knowing this, and knew that I was building a guitar that only I would value...a home build (or assembly if you will) has never, and will never give you a return on your investment.

    I wouldn't sell mine even for what I have in it...it's a personal instrument..I love it!
     
  4. Zenzeypher

    Zenzeypher Tele-Afflicted

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    true, ive seen necks and bodies that sold for more then the combined guitars worth.

    Ive noticed a trend where guitars are alot more expensive over here then in the states for some odd reason.

    I agree with the original OP, people don't tend to trust things they havn't heard of especially now with e-commerce and the whole buy before you try thing people arn't gonna trust a non name brand even with the best bits ever over a Fender.

    I find myself doing it too sometimes.

    Also a custom guitar I don't think will ever increase in value over the years like the real deal.

    A great playing guitar regardless of name is worth it's weight in gold.
     
  5. SamClemons

    SamClemons Poster Extraordinaire

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    Sell it in parts. I find the opposite is often true though. Someone assembles a bunch of expensive parts they often overpaid fore and think they have created the ultimate dream guitar when in reality their dream is not as good as, or maybe it is equivalent to, your average MIM Fender and they want a bazillion dollars to try to recoup their investment.
     
  6. phillip lee

    phillip lee TDPRI Member

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    The young fellow at Music-Go-Round in Greensboro NC seemed excited to see it, seemed to know what it was, but the Owner was walking around and he gave me the standard spiel," We only go by book value, I have no idea what to ask for this guitar. Hey, are those Fralins? Those are locking Grovers. Yeah, I don't want to insult you by offering you too little"
    Me. "I have 860 dollars in the parts, want to trade for that 499 Classical over there"
    Him." Wow, what kinda finish is that, this thing looks killer. I'm sorry, an even trade is out of the question. What type of harness in it?"
    "Rothstein, all top components with an expensive cap"
    "I'll bet it sounds killer. Where did you get this pickguard work done?"
    "El Dorado, they cost around a 100 bucks. You sure we can't trade? Plug it in!"
    (Eyeing his Boss nervously) "No, I'm sorry Sir, have to go by the rules."
     
  7. mellecaster

    mellecaster Former Member

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    While I tend to agree with the OP on his general scope of the Market, there are some well-informed Buyers, and Pro Players who will Buy Custom Builds...there are also others who will pay $1,000.00 for a Decal....makes it all interesting IMO.
     
  8. Nub

    Nub Friend of Leo's

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    You're talking a homebuilt/partscaster... that's not really what's considered a custom build. Many of the well-known custom builders turn out stuff that holds it's value pretty well, sometimes much better than a comparable Fender.
     
  9. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    And these buyers don't buy with resale in mind.

    Selling a guitar is no different than selling anything else. If you need to make a quick buck, you're going to settle for 20 - 30 cents on the dollar because the music shop, pawn shop, fence, whatever, needs to make a profit. He's got to find a knowedgable buyer with ready cash who is willing to pay his price, and he may wait for weeks or months to recoup his money. If you want retail price, then you've got to do the work. That's essentially what you're doing when you sell anything to a business, you're paying for their marketing expertise and ready cash.

    Griping about 'todays market' misses the point entirely. The only way to make money selling guitars or anything else is to buy low and sell high. Selling requires that you have some patience and skill, not to mention having something that someone with money wants to buy.
     
  10. muzicmaken

    muzicmaken Tele-Holic

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    I disagree. yea that little headstock decal makes a huge difference. Even if they put out the crappiest guitar a Fender's value is unbelievable. When in reality there are a lot of people who create their own partsters that DO sound better / just as good/ plays better than the one that says Fender even the ones that say "Made in America".

    I'd put some of these partster here on this forum up against ANY Fender any day.

    I honestly do not think that Fenders today will not hold their value or become collectibles like the 50's 60's and 70's. And it says something when a guitar made in a factory from Japan has more worth than their American counterparts.
     
  11. McGlamRock

    McGlamRock Poster Extraordinaire

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    I agree with the OP- I've got a nice partscaster that I plan on selling pretty soon but I'll be happy if I get $350 for it. C'est la vie (sigh)
     
  12. RedDirt

    RedDirt Tele-Meister

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    (Like Many) This thread has several different conversations going on at once.

    1) Most current regular production Fender guitars will not fetch high prices in 20 years.

    2) Many Partscasters are better than Fenders.

    3) Most music stores make their $$$ selling low end gear to non-musicians.

    4) No "BIG" music store is going to buy and sell random Partscasters.

    5) Custom builders that have spent years building up a name do get good prices for their work.

    6) No store of any kind will pay you retail for anything.




    .
     
  13. adjason

    adjason Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    If the guitar is really great you would never even consider selling it for under what a new one cost so around $1,000. Of course you won't get close to this so if you ever build a guitar it should never be with the intent of selling it. I agree with the poster who said sell the parts. But if the guitar is that good then it could be your one and only.
     
  14. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

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    There are so many things that make up a good guitar that have to be right, I personally don't want to invest in someone else's labor of love. It would seem to me, the only reason you would build a guitar is to learn about the overall construction of a guitar, and to try and build one that completely suited yourself. There is little chance that the finished product would appeal to anyone but someone of your exact same likes. You can market anything given enough time, but if you are trying to sell something at YOUR price, it may take a while. I've seen people who were trying to break into the "custom" market end up in the same position of having something they couldn't get their money back out of let alone make a profit. Tuff world out there.
     
  15. Greg.Coal

    Greg.Coal Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Why don't you try to sell it on the Greensboro CraigsList? If you do sell it, you will have avoided the "middle man". You can do the sales job better since you will be motivated.

    Greg
     
  16. Mike Simpson

    Mike Simpson Doctor of Teleocity

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    You don't sell partscasters while they are still put together... you didn't buy it all put together... Take it apart and advertise the parts seperately. Here in the TDPRI classifieds or on ebay...

    If you had bought a $900 Fender GC would probably only give you $175 to $250 in trade on a newer guitar that sells for $499 and probably $100 if you wanted to sell it for cash. GC is the absolute worst place to trade in a guitar... except maybe Bizarre Guitars in Phoenix.


    Me... I don't really care if no one wants to buy one of my builds...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2011
  17. TaylorPlayer

    TaylorPlayer Tele-Afflicted

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    Everything has value to someone. I got my #1 Electric (Warmoth Partscaster) in trade on craigslist for a beautiful condition Port City 2 x 12 cab. The guy now built his own guitars and used them for gigging and didn't want to be using the Warmoth as it has a Fender headstock Custom label on it. When I first saw it, I was not that impressed. I wasn't a huge fan of the color and was worried the lack of fret marker dots on the fretboard would be difficult to adjust to.

    I picked it up to see how I liked it and found it played like the proverbial butter, sounded even better, had all the body contours that a Strat would have but in a Tele shape and featured the most beautiful birdseye maple neck I ever saw. Fret dots would have taken away from the beauty of the neck. It was a no brainer after playing it. It played better and sounded better than any other "Fender" product I had played to date.

    I think that a really sweet playing guitar with quality parts still has appeal to a guy like me who cares less about the name on the headstock and more about how it feels and sounds. You just need to find the "right" buyer. Personally I feel that a guitar this good should stay in the family forever which is my plan with my "Custom" Tele.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. dada

    dada Banned Troll

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    Now that's a purdy tele!
     
  19. Martinp

    Martinp Tele-Afflicted

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    Sam Ash will give you, maybe 50% of the book value. If it's not in the book, see ya!
     
  20. telex76

    telex76 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My partscaster cost (at the time I put it together) about the same as a new American Standard. I made it as close as I could to a 52ri, or early 50's vintage. I wouldn't trade it even for a 52ri. I might trade it even for the right Nocaster.

    I know that I either keep it or practically give it away or part it out for at best $500.
     
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