How much would you guys pay for my partscasters?

Discussion in 'Other T-Types and Partscasters' started by 63 vibroverb, Oct 17, 2020 at 6:32 PM.

  1. teletail

    teletail Tele-Afflicted

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    They are a known quality. I've never played a Nash that wasn't really nice. And they have a resale market.

    If I was going to try to make a go of making guitars I'd try to get some in the hands of respected players and offer a money back guarantee. I paid $2,500 for my Doc Fisher Tele based on an interview with Redd Volkaert, listening to some clips and the fact that Doc offers a money back guarantee, no questions asked.
     
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  2. Cali Dude

    Cali Dude Tele-Holic

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    I love the wood grain you are getting. It's very attractive. I don't need more guitars now, but those have to be worth a good 7 bills.
     
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  3. radiocaster

    radiocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    Yeah, you won't be able to sell them for much more than new MIMs. They are nice though.

    Might do a little better if you offer custom options like humbuckers and strat headstocks.
     
  4. Marc Morfei

    Marc Morfei Tele-Afflicted

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    I'll speak purely from the standpoint of an end user. I totally believe that a partscaster made by a skilled person may have better materials, be more carefully assembled, and be an all-around better guitar than a mass-produced run from Fender, and thus be worth more money. But that is in general, in the abstract. With the Fender guitar, I have a pretty good expectation of what I will be getting if I buy one. Yes, there is variation between individual instruments. But generally, if you order model X from Sweetwater it will be pretty close to the same model X from GC, or anywhere else. It is predictable.

    But a partscaster is unpredictable. With a partscaster, I have no idea what I would be getting unless I spend a good amount of time examining and playing it, and I have trust that the builder is highly skilled. So I would need to invest a good amount of my own time to make those assessments. Plus I would need to be knowledgeable enough to know what I am looking for in assessing quality. There is an unknown, and with that comes risk. The higher the risk, the less I am willing to pay.

    I see partscasters advertised all the time. No way I would ever order one off Reverb, not having the opportunity to inspect and play it. I see them all the time on Craigslist. Yes, I could drive over the guy's house and sit there for an hour getting to know the guitar. But to buy it I would need to be really, really sure, because I'm betting the guy doesn't have a return policy.

    The guitars in the OP are beautiful. I would love to get my hands on one and try it out. Maybe some day I will do that with a local example. But so far I have not been motivated to do so.

    With this in mind, I can easily see what most of people have already said. Selling a partscaster, you'd do well to recoup the cost of the materials. Very difficult to recoup the cost of your time.
     
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  5. KATT

    KATT Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

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    I think it's almost unanimous that the members here who have commented so far would not pay for the cost of the parts plus your time in agonizing putting them together.

    It seems that your target market therefore needs to be people who would value your time and be prepared to pay for it. If not the members of this site who are fanatical about Telecasters and guitars in general, then I'm not sure where you would find that market.

    I think it's up to you to prove us all wrong and I hope you do, as the guitars you put together look very nice.

    It's not particularly clear whether you finish the bodies yourself though from what you have stated so far. If so, perhaps custom finished bodies would be a better line of business. Although I have no desire to put together (or own) a partscaster myself, if I did, the only part I couldn't be bothered with is the finishing.
     
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  6. DrPepper

    DrPepper Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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  7. loopfinding

    loopfinding Tele-Meister

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    personally i'm willing to pay 100-150 over a fender body for a nicely finished body in a color of my choice, and fender new price on an allparts neck nicely finished with "good enough to string up" fret and nut work. parts and setup i can worry about myself, i'm not interested in paying a premium for installing them. otherwise i'd just hunt for something that's good to go already. i think you could make some modest money by selling finished bodies and necks, or husks, but not really partscasters in full.
     
  8. That Cal Webway

    That Cal Webway Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    If you're talking a freshly built one with mostly new stuff and you're wanting an US dollar value

    I would give maybe $600 or so
     
  9. jvin248

    jvin248 Poster Extraordinaire

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    Now get on Facebook Marketplace and sell one of your guitars there for some price where you break even. Does it generate buzz?
    You would interface there with a completely different group of guitar buyers than TDPRI, completely different demographic with different buying habits.

    Look at the history of PRS. Back in the 80s Paul spent a year making a guitar that he took to Santana concerts, stalking Santana and probably a dozen other popular players, and urged the roadies to get the guitar to the artist (don't try this today, stalkers end up arrested). Santana eventually gave in to the persistent requests and played that guitar on stage. Now the PRS Brand had legitimacy that investors were willing to drop cash for and dealers were willing to sell. Santana was also the brand on the first PRS SE models at the end of the 90s to convince buyers that "these are ok too".

    Guitar players are still the same. They will consider a guitar brand they see on stage. Fender and Gibson spend huge budgets on curating Artist Relations. I suspect if you dig back in Nash's history you'll find a core of several famous players early on who used those guitars and perhaps talked them up. Reverend Guitars got a few famous local players to play early models on stage. Worker escapees from Fender/Gibson/PRS Custom Shops started by being known in those Custom Shops before going out on their own, effectively leaving with a known famous player list of clients.

    Which this need of guitarists for popular player validation is comical -- Rock 'n Roll is all about being alternative, raging against the system, individualism, rebellion, don't let the man tell you what to do or think, be independent. And then guitarists largely only want to play what the factory's well-paid stage actors are marketing and telling them to buy.

    If you are doing all the build work ... I'd quickly get to the point you have your own brand and headstock.
    Be clear where you are sourcing parts and what kind of extra work you are putting in, but have your own Brand.
    Because it's a lot of thankless work to market Fender's products for them.

    .
     
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  10. stefanhotrod

    stefanhotrod Tele-Holic

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    There are Partscasters and Partscasters. Thinking of Nacho Banos: Musikraft neck & body, heavy (and wonderful!) aged: ~ 5-6 k.

    Aren‘t Nash also Partscasters?
     
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  11. drumtime

    drumtime Tele-Holic

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    Anybody making money as a builder of bolt-together electric guitars is doing that under their own brand, and as others have noted, has spent a lot of time building that brand.

    If you really want to make a go at this, definitely lose the Fender decal. It's actually devaluing your guitars, surprisingly. A potential buyer looks at the guitar, sees "Fender" on the headstock, finds out it's not an actual Fender, and walks away. You are not going to make money selling what amounts to a "pretend Fender."

    Your own brand on the headstock says, "This guitar is different." That really helps if you want to charge a different price.
     
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  12. Frisco 57

    Frisco 57 Tele-Meister

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    I think the beauty of a parts caster is you can build exactly what you yourself want. I realize that you can rarely get back what you've got into them but oh well, I built what I wanted and I built it for me. I also like that you can take your time with a build and buy one part at a time and you can buy a part or two when you've got a little extra money. It's (for me) a lot easier than laying down a huge pile of cash for that cool one with your favorite manufacturer's name on the head stock that's hanging on the wall of your local music store. The one that you can't seem to live without!

    Nope, I dig Parts Casters! Build 'em, Play 'em, Keep 'em.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020 at 12:43 PM
  13. lammie200

    lammie200 Friend of Leo's

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    That is the only way I have gotten ridden of past partscasters that I no longer wanted. I would say that it has been pretty common for me to get back 2/3 to 3/4 the amount of money I had invested that way. I would guess that I would be lucky to get 1/4 back on a full guitar.
     
  14. 4pickupguy

    4pickupguy Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    I was basing my pricing on the most I would play for a guitar somebody else built from after market parts if they knew what they were doing. The strat I just bought all the parts for ran about $1000 before labor. His op asked what we would pay for his partscasters so I decided what the most I would pay for a partscaster somebody else has assembled provided they did a good job, not a MIM, Squier, brand xyz.
    My #1 for two years was a Walmart Sawtooth I paid $55 dollars for at a pawnshop and put Cavaliers in. There is a video of me playing that guitar on his website. Different king of partscaster entirely.
     
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  15. mefgames

    mefgames Friend of Leo's Double Platinum Supporter

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    I'm not sure this really answers your question regarding "what they're worth", but I think it's a good read. I build guitars from scratch, buying only the hardware and electronics, and have never built a parts caster. I saw this on the forum, and it answered a lot of what I was struggling with regarding pricing.

    https://dogtiredguitars.com/blogs/news/art-and-criticism
     
  16. jrblue

    jrblue Friend of Leo's

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    You're making something people don't really want. In the market, which speaks clearly for itself, partscaster players, and there are many, want the freedom to choose their own preferred components. There is no value to them in having someone else have all the fun for them. Even astounding partscasters go for no more than a fraction of the parts cost. In some cases, your choices are contrary to market preferences. People routinely replace MIM necks with Warmoth, etc. yet you are billing your use of MIM necks as a plus. I like them fine, but they're not a selling point on partscasters. It's the reverse, really. I appreciate what you're doing, but I don't see it as a viable enterprise, because it's not what the market wants or values.
     
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  17. bftfender

    bftfender Poster Extraordinaire

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    Built this & have it on CL for 200.. It's entertaining to read the emails. Its Eden body, fender lic neck, Alnico 5 pickups, 300+ in cost. Sounds great but has no value at all.
    Start build a.jpg strat neck (2).jpg
     
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  18. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Funny you mention the Wal Mart guitar!
    I have a Stracaster arrowhead neck at the post office, bought for $35.
    I have a Maestro by Gibson neck in the parts bin I'd like to refret and put on some sort of mahogany slab body for a LP Jr like cheapo.
    The Starcaster neck is from Malaysia, has the truss access plastic liner, two pin tuner mount, and seems like a better neck than most of the $50 Chinese stuff.(clearly better than most of those cheap starcaster arrowhead necks too)
    Both necks are the worst Fender and Gibson has to offer, so bad that they won't even include them in the Squier and Epi lines.
    I'm thinking I can get useful instruments out of them.

    So we know that bottom tier parts assemblies can be indistinguishable to the audience, from a $700 guitar.
    And then a "$700 guitar" can be made with a great $109 MIJ Allparts neck and a great $100 US made body, great $39 tuners, great $60 pickups, nice $12 USA RI bridge plus a few more bits @ $350 in parts.
    Plus finishing and assembly labor.

    Then we might spec out an all Warmoth assembly made with your mentioned $1000 in parts.
    Plus finishing and assembly labor.

    So with a $650 difference in parts cost/ "quality", it sounds like you mentioned your top $$ of $700 while thinking of your top grade partscaster made with $1000 worth of parts.

    Would you also pay $700 for the one I described $350 in parts for?
    Not saying you would or wouldn't, and I'm really just using your higher suggested retail partscaster price to communicate with @63 vibroverb WRT his asking how much we would pay for a partscaster (made with an MIM neck and unspecified body)

    @Jakedog gave a similar example of his having to settle for $350 on an over $1000 in parts assembly.

    Maybe a better question, rather thasn how much would we pay for the whole guitar; is how much would we pay for the labor to assemble a guitar?
    If you would pay $700 for an assembly of $350 worth of parts, then you would pay $350 for finishing and assembly.

    But maybe you meant you would pay $700 for the partscaster you assembled from $1000 in parts?
    Meaning the OP has to PAY YOU $300 for his assembly enjoyment?

    That is unfortunately the market for partscasters made by other than known branded names.
    But if an individual chooses to invest in building themselves a known branded name (like Rob and Ron have done), they can then make some profit assembling partscasters, and maybe also making some of the parts themselves.
    But we know that some assembler/ builder brands finish and assemble parts they didn't actually make, while still putting their own name on the headstock.

    That know branded trusted name has more $$ value than the labor.
     
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  19. moonman2

    moonman2 Tele-Meister

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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020 at 12:27 PM
  20. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I gotta say, and this is a real disappointment to me right now, the MIM necks Fender sells for $200- $300 are IMO not as good as the MIJ necks Allparts sells for $109- $159. But the MIM necks command an extra $150 or so for the branding.

    I recently bought a new in box MIM Fender roasted maple neck and was so unhappy with the quality I returned it.
     
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