1. Win a Broadcaster or one of 3 Teles! The annual Supporting Member Giveaway is on. To enter Click Here. To see all the prizes and full details Click Here. To view the thread about the giveaway Click Here.

Buying a guitar in NYC...

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by 57fenderstrat, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. 57fenderstrat

    57fenderstrat Tele-Holic

    Age:
    29
    Posts:
    708
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2019
    Location:
    Binghamton NY
    hey everyone,

    Soon I plan on getting my first Telecaster, have been planning on a 52 reissue to pair with my AVri57 Strat for years now. I have never bought a guitar online, It has always been important to me that I play it first. When I got my 57 Strat years ago I played probably eight other Strats before I found what I was looking for. For the 52 tele I know all the specs I want and have it narrowed down much further. I could get one on Reverb or something but I’m concerned about worn frets or getting one that just doesn’t have the the life in it. It is important to me to see how a guitar rings unplugged and such.

    Long story short I can buy online blind or I can travel three hours to New York City and see if the bigger stores there have any 52 Teles. Basically going to New York would be pointless unless there is at least two 52 Teles that I can compared against each other.

    What is your experience buying online? I have never owned a telecaster and if i get one online I won’t have the experience of knowing how mine is compared to others of the same model.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
    Telekarster likes this.
  2. Recce

    Recce Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    3,522
    Joined:
    May 3, 2016
    Location:
    Northern Alabama
    I have done well buying online. If you know the names of the stores in NYC you could check online or call ahead to see if they have what you are looking to buy. That would save you a trip and you would know they had it for you to try.
     
    57fenderstrat and JayFreddy like this.
  3. NewKid

    NewKid Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,018
    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2011
    Location:
    Seattle
    I have purchased all my Fender electrics online and like them all. However, I only buy from reputable retailers like Chicago Music Exchange, Sweetwater, and recently Cream City Music.

    What’s nice about these stores is that you can talk to a person about your purchase and they will really help you.

    The New York stores may be able to do the same and let you know how the guitar sounds and plays. Ask about their return policy.

    I would rather pay return shipping than drive to NYC to try a couple of guitars. That traffic is a waste of life.

    Good luck with your search!
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  4. gwjensen

    gwjensen Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

    Posts:
    3,483
    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2011
    Location:
    District of Chicanery
    If you go to NYC, you have to go to Rudy's... Might be worth the three hour schlep... Iconic guitar shop.
     
  5. Slim Chance

    Slim Chance Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,356
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    Location:
    Beltway, USA
    I bought a new AV 64 online from a shop in Louisiana or was it Mississippi? Can’t remember. One of the few remaining LPBs so I couldn’t compare it to another. Very nice guitar. You need to speak with someone on the phone who is actually holding the guitar in his/her hand and ask very specific questions. Also get good quality photos including detail shots sent to you.

    If you’re going to drive from Binghamton, check out stock in shops along the way. There’s a GC in Passaic and probably others. Maybe make a weekend of and take in a show.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  6. ReverendRevolver

    ReverendRevolver Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,768
    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2019
    Location:
    Ohio (Nerk)
    I've bought 2 sold one. The one I bought off Reverb this year is nice, usps damaged the finish by the bottom strap button, but it's all fine now.
    But..... I bought a Mexican Fender duosonic in capri orange for less than $400 used, and even after getting a translucent milky white pickgaurd and custom wound A5 Budhas for it have less in it than a new one. Literally, it needs a small sticker for the headstock I'm still shopping for, and itll be 100%.


    You're talking a way nicer price point though, so aim for the big companies with generous return policies, and you should be ok. Or plan a trip if you still feel better. there isn't a right answer that overrides peace of mind.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  7. speranza

    speranza TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    31
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2018
    Location:
    Seattle
    I was just in Rudy's a couple of hours ago and it is really something... I didn't see a '52-style Tele, though they did have a lefty American Original '50s.

    What they did have, though, was a beautiful very lightly used Custom Shop '58 toploader NOS — looks like Jim Campilongo's Tele would have looked when it was new. I'd be lying if I said I didn't think for a few minutes about where I could get my hands on $2900....
     
    57fenderstrat and gwjensen like this.
  8. JL_LI

    JL_LI Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    70
    Posts:
    4,113
    Joined:
    May 20, 2017
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Music Zoo is on Long Island about an hour from the city on a weekend morning. They have a dedicated Fender room and their inventory is searchable on line. I didn't see a 52 reissue but this Custom Shop 52 caught my attention.
    https://www.themusiczoo.com/product...ited-run-relic-honey-blonde-2005-namm-display
    Happy hunting. Sometimes it's worth it to stop in at a first rate retailer and try a few. You may be surprised at what you find and may find something unexpected to bring home.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  9. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    55
    Posts:
    2,259
    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2018
    Location:
    Wilmington, DE
    Right. Most stores have their inventory online these days. Or you could just call them up. Three hours is a big trip. You want to make sure someone has what you want. My own experience buying online sight-unseen is pretty good. I think I did it 3 times, and each time the guitar was basically what I expected. But those were not as expensive as the one you are thinking about. I would want to play it.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  10. Greggorios

    Greggorios Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Posts:
    3,502
    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2016
    Location:
    NY
    Don't waste your time driving to NYC unless you know that a retailer has a 52 Reissue in stock to sell. Like most other businesses the guitar retail business has shrunk as a result of the internet. It's not like the old days when there were a few dozen guitar stores throughout the city. Now there's only a handful. You can also check Alto Music, they have stores in Wappingers Falls, Middletown and Poughkeepsie which are a bit closer to Binghampton than NYC. Good luck.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  11. Slim Chance

    Slim Chance Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,356
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    Location:
    Beltway, USA
    Another thought. What’s the limit on your credit card? Guitar Center has at least two nice looking ones on their used site. Order them to your closest store, where you can compare and return if not happy. The shipping would be less than gas money to NYC.

    Not sure if anyone has said this yet, but they are great guitars. My 2017 52 is my favorite to play. Just can’t go wrong with a good one.
     
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
    57fenderstrat and Greggorios like this.
  12. Telekarster

    Telekarster Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    415
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2019
    Location:
    Earth
    I have bought just as many guitars online as I have in a store, and maybe even a little more. I must say that by and large, I've been quite fortunate. BUT... I ONLY buy quality instruments and the seller MUST have good pics of everything, or be able to provide me good pics of what I need to see, frets, neck joint, etc. etc. No exceptions regardless how good the price is!

    What I mean by quality insturments = American made XYZ e.g. AVRI Strat, Custom Shop XYZ, etc. and with such guitars the risk of getting a dud is pretty minimal IMHO. Having said that, I don't mind a well used instrument IF the price is right of course ;) I picked up a basket case 1930 Dobro Mod 27 for 300 bucks because it needed TONS of work. But, when all was said and done, 200 bucks later I gots me a nice un for 500... all original even the cone... if you see what I mean. So, it's really a personal thing and what you're willing to take a risk on vs. saving some $$$ etc.

    One suggestion I would make would be that if you find a TC online somewhere (don't forget the TDPRI classifieds), you might do well to post it out here and let some of your fellow members check it out with you ;) Just a thought.
     
    57fenderstrat and Fretting out like this.
  13. 57fenderstrat

    57fenderstrat Tele-Holic

    Age:
    29
    Posts:
    708
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2019
    Location:
    Binghamton NY
    Thanks guys I appreciate all of these responses and good points. I will have to mull things over and look further into some stores and their inventory but will let you guys know what happens. I’m real happy about being a member here, it is so helpful and informative for me
     
  14. kurtmanifest1

    kurtmanifest1 Tele-Meister

    Posts:
    418
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Location:
    Argentina
    Call rudy’s
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  15. fjfinamore

    fjfinamore TDPRI Member

    Posts:
    91
    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Location:
    Empire State
    The internet has essentially killed independent guitar shops in big cities that carry a lot of used guitars, which is a shame. The only one of note in Manhattan is 30th Street Guitars (http://www.30thstreetguitars.com). There are a few of note in Brooklyn like Main Drag Music (https://www.maindragmusic.com). But the heyday of great guitar shops on 48th street, where you could go through several similar used guitars in a day are gone.

    It’s interesting that some of the best guitars I bought were ones I accidentally found. I was trying out an amp in Matt Umanov’s with a used Custom Shop Strat which I took off the wall nearby, and bought the guitar instead of the amp. I had wanted a ’52 Reissue since they came out in the early 80s, but never found one I liked until 2009, when I happened into a Guitar Center after Christmas.

    The danger of imposing a time limit on finding “the” guitar, is you could buy something just to buy something. Of course, with guitars, you can always sell it if you don’t bond with it in the long run, most likely on Reverb.com.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  16. hellopike

    hellopike Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    41
    Posts:
    1,408
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2015
    Location:
    Philadelphia
    I was going to say make a day of the visit to nyc and take a train in, but I had to lookup your location- never heard of Binghamton. I’m not sure a train is an option. I can understand your reservations about driving in. It’s a long drive, expensive and traffic is rough.

    On a tangent, I can’t imagine living so far from a major metropolis, where a trip to the nearest city is a 3 hour drive.

    But now I have a question for you- let’s say internet shopping never existed for a moment: would you still be in the same position looking for the specific guitar you want? How many local guitar shops would you have in Binghamton? Or would you still have to travel and hope for the best?

    What about looking in PA? Plot out any shops on the way to Scranton, then Allentown and down into Philadelphia...? Same travel time as nyc, probably less traffic, and probably cheaper toll-wise. And you might actually run into just as many shops along the way.
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  17. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    9,863
    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2014
    Location:
    Lions & Tigers oh Mi !
    .

    Do you have a local guitar tech? They can do your setup to your playing style. That frees you to order sight unseen and know you have a backstop. If the guitar ships with something you don't like such as the wood grain pattern or damage you can send it back (although I've seen people who didn't like a little knot in the wood but loved the way the guitar sounded and didn't want to risk sending it back for a nicer looking but potentially bad sounding exchange).

    .
     
    57fenderstrat likes this.
  18. 57fenderstrat

    57fenderstrat Tele-Holic

    Age:
    29
    Posts:
    708
    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2019
    Location:
    Binghamton NY
    I have four guitar stores that are within 20 minutes away, one of them is guitar center. I like all of these stores but three of them are more focused on beginner-mid level instruments. The other store is a guy who just sells expensive vintage amps and guitars, he is also my guitar and amp tech and does any setup or modifications that I can’t handle myself. None of these stores see much for higher end used items coming in. The guitar center has changed over the years and now half of the store has turned into these booths for guitar lessons they give. If I was ready to buy a 52 reissue when they were still being produced I probably could have found one in town. Most of my guitar purchases have come from a store called House of Guitars which is massive but also three hours away. I have looked online at most of the Guitar stores within an hour of me but haven’t had much luck. Scranton PA is about an hour away so I will have to look into that alittle more. I got the NYC idea from some Youtubers I like who posted videos about Rudy’s and Guitar center. I thought If I went there I would try to go to like four stores or so and have a better chance at seeing the Tele. I probably would take a train there because that city driving intimidates me hahah. Ideally I would like to compare at least two different 52 Teles before buying one. I don’t have a time limit on when I need to buy one but I have had Tele fever for years and the symptoms have been strong this year. The last guitar I purchased was seven or eight years ago.

    A few months ago I traveled around a bunch of stores because I wanted to buy a Tweed Deluxe for my first tube amp, I just couldn’t find one to play and ended up buying it online without ever playing it first. It turned out great but that experience made me realize how hard it is to find what you want without using the internet.
     
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.