Perhaps I’m persnickety but…Quality Control on original 50s new tele

Blues Twanger

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I mean, considering it is a hand-assembled and nitro/poly-finished guitar, you can expect these things to happen.

No guitar is 100%, regardless of price. But if it’s 98% there, why fret?
There are plenty of builders delivering guitars without these issues for the price. FMIC isn't one of them.
 

Chipss36

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I picked my 50s AO tele out of a stack of them,my ears and hands decided. later I saw small issues, no way would I send what I have back, because what my ears told me, that trumps what my eyes found later.
something to consider.

that AO is one of the finest sounding tele’s I have ever owned, especially after A pickup swap. what Are your ears telling you?
 

Vim_Fuego_

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To be fair nobody born after 1950 knows how to set flat heads like they did back on the Bronze Age. It’s still a really cool guitar. If you deepen pilot hole I bet you can set the pick guard. Fender should send you a new neck screw. Can you ask the dealer to help?

Rock the heck out of it.
Just getting to grips with a new 50s original, guitar looks and plays great but found a few annoying “defects”. I’ve worked in QA/QC so maybe overzealous, what do you guys think - see photos. I’ve contacted fender uk for feedback, they can’t improve unless we tell them 😂

1. B string ferrule not fully inserted
2. Damaged screw on neck plate
3. Scratch plate screw poorly driven

I can live with/fix these things but a bit annoying for the price

Now if it was road worn 😂😂😂
Ok folks update from Fender…

No more stock so replacement not available

They are offering return and fix under warranty, return for full refund or keep guitar with 5% refund.

My initial feeling is keep it ,It plays/sounds great

Question is should I get them to fix under warranty

Decisions decisions will sleep on it 😂😂😂
 

Brent Hutto

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Honestly, it comes down to whether over the next couple years you can focus on the "feels and sounds great" or will be continuing to feel a little queasy about the Q/C flaws and cosmetics.

If you really think deep down that stuff will be bothering you every time you look at the guitar, even months or years from now, then send it back for refund.

If you think the "feel and sound" will stay with you and the cosmetic stuff will fade into the background with time, then don't let it out of your hands. Just play it and get on with the forgetting to notice the Q/C problems!
 

Killing Floor

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FYI

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MilwMark

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More and more I think I don't belong on forums. I don't inspect my guitars with a special light and a magnifying glass. I'm honestly not even sure I see what the "defects" are except (maybe) the ferrule?

I also don't understand where the whole PRS mythology comes from. I keep asking my local shops and they keep telling me all the big American manufacturers crank out guitars that basically require the same amount of setup across their models, even before accounting for individual player preference. That's not to say PRS is bad. Just that they are like the other guys. FWIW the shops seem to think the guitars are just fine and more consistently good than in prior eras.
 

old wrench

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Something to think about, especially for the folks who say - no big deal, I think you should just accept the defects and move on.

When it's your guitar, those defects always look a little different

Maybe you really don't care what your brand-new guitar looks like - good for you!

I've been told that I'm a picky s.o.b. - that can be true, and I can't argue with that :)

I don't recall being told that I'm "persnickety", but my hearing isn't very good and I've also been accused of having a selective memory ;)


When Fender (or any other manufacturer) advertises their products - they don't show a guitar with one ferrule sticking up higher than the others

And they don't show a guitar with pickup screw sticking up, or one with a neck screw that has a funky-looking head either


Take pride in your work - do it right !!!

If we don't set the standards - who will ???

.
 

Brent Hutto

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Something to think about, especially for the folks who say - no big deal, I think you should just accept the defects and move on.

When it's your guitar, those defects always look a little different

Maybe you really don't care what your brand-new guitar looks like - good for you!

I've been told that I'm a picky s.o.b. - that can be true, and I can't argue with that :)

I don't recall being told that I'm "persnickety", but my hearing isn't very good and I've also been accused of having a selective memory ;)


When Fender (or any other manufacturer) advertises their products - they don't show a guitar with one ferrule sticking up higher than the others

And they don't show a guitar with pickup screw sticking up, or one with a neck screw that has a funky-looking head either


Take pride in your work - do it right !!!

If we don't set the standards - who will ???

.
That sort of thing has never bothered me in terms of owning the guitar but I know it's going to make it twice as hard to sell one day down the road. So if it's the kind nick or blemish that I'm likely to put on there myself over time (I do not baby my instruments) it's no big deal. But if it's a permanent or hard to repair thing that's obviously a mistake in the way the guitar is made I'd send it back. It's hard enough selling an expensive guitar down the road, no need to make it harder.
 

tele12

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........


When Fender (or any other manufacturer) advertises their products - they don't show a guitar with one ferrule sticking up higher than the others

And they don't show a guitar with pickup screw sticking up, or one with a neck screw that has a funky-looking head either


Take pride in your work - do it right !!!

If we don't set the standards - who will ???

.

I will be very confident in saying there has never been a single Fender marketing picture, not in the original print catalogs, not in magazine ads and not in online website pictures where you can see enough detail to determine if the ferrules line up, the pickguard screws are flush or all the screws are perfect.

All standards have tolerances, the tighter those tolerances are the higher the price, and the increases are not linear.

Does the defect affect the sound?
Does the defect affect playability?
Does the defect affect the feel?
Can it be seen by the audience?
 

Paul G.

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It's totally bodged. I'll give you $85 for it.

All kidding aside, it's fine. Ferrules typical, drive in the pickguard screw yourself, neck screw scratch is nothing.

$2500 is about what a Telecaster always cost adjusted for inflation.
 

Southlaw 68

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I thought that I had posted a very similar concern a few months ago, but I cannot find it in my content folder.

That said, my daughter bought me a left handed American Original 50's Telecaster for my birthday. It was a complete surprise when it arrived by UPS at my office. As I opened the box, to my extreme delight, a tweed case!! My heart was pounding! As I open the case I was awed by a butterscotch Tele with a 5 screw single ply black guard.

For right handed players this is just one of many offering from Fender. For a lefty, the American Original is the flagship Fender Telecaster (without getting into custom shop). I was like a twelve year old kid on Christmas morning! Smiling from ear to ear and yelping out occasionally with delight. I removed the bubble wrap, lifted the guitar out of the case and stood in awe!

My OCD is never too far away, even when I am experiencing nirvana. I started a top to bottom inspection for any imperfections. I hadn't even started when I noticed two glaring boo boos. Located in the lower horn were two green stained fingerprints. Fender uses a grain stain to highlight the grain under the butterscotch nitrocellulose paint. However, these prints were on the paint, not under it. Mind you, these were not small partial prints, they were full sized fingerprints. Suddenly, nirvana turns quickly into apprehension. I continue my inspection and discover a giant knot on the front of the guitar. That alone would not be a big deal but, the grain stain highlighted it sooooo much that it looked like a giant snot smack dab on the front.

When I turned the guitar over I was flabbergasted with the piece a crap wood that Fender would use on a guitar that retails for $2,100. With no exaggeration, there were 2 1/4" spacing between the grain rings. This was truly a piece of bastard wood that was passed along on a $2,100 guitar.

Needless to say, I packaged up, got a return authorization order and shipped it back within minutes of receiving it. However this story ends well. I am having a custom built MJT 68 Thinline with Fralin pickups. It should be complete within the next few weeks (its in the assembly stage.)

My point is, if QC continues to decline with premium models, it will not be long before customers start looking for other companies to fill the void.
 

knopflerfan

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As much as a Fender Strat and Tele guy I am(primarily Mexican and Chinese), the defects on that guitar, at that price, are unexplainable. My Sire basses and PRS SE guitars do not have any of those issues, whatsoever. C'mon Fender.
 

Brent Hutto

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$2500 is about what a Telecaster always cost adjusted for inflation.
My Player Tele cost $849 last month. As far as I can tell it has no visible flaws at all other than a teensy, tiny fleck of black paint near one of the fretboard dots. Even its much-maligned "Mexican fret ends" were perfect.

They only cost $2,500 if you're willing to pay the thousand-plus dollar premium for USA as "country of origin".

When shopping for my Tele I played and handled a whole bunch of them (along with quite a few Strats). As far as I can tell, there were huge range of quality issues (or non-issues) across all the product lines. The $800 Mexican ones, the over-$1,000 Mexican ones and the expensive USA ones all ranges from nigh perfect to unplayable or slap-dash looking.

Total luck of the draw and I could not discern any pattern of the ones priced higher being less likely to have "issues". You buy a Fender guitar, check it out real good and decide if its quality is sufficient by your own standards. Then proceed accordingly.
 

Paul G.

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My Player Tele cost $849 last month. As far as I can tell it has no visible flaws at all other than a teensy, tiny fleck of black paint near one of the fretboard dots. Even its much-maligned "Mexican fret ends" were perfect.

They only cost $2,500 if you're willing to pay the thousand-plus dollar premium for USA as "country of origin".

When shopping for my Tele I played and handled a whole bunch of them (along with quite a few Strats). As far as I can tell, there were huge range of quality issues (or non-issues) across all the product lines. The $800 Mexican ones, the over-$1,000 Mexican ones and the expensive USA ones all ranges from nigh perfect to unplayable or slap-dash looking.

Total luck of the draw and I could not discern any pattern of the ones priced higher being less likely to have "issues". You buy a Fender guitar, check it out real good and decide if its quality is sufficient by your own standards. Then proceed accordingly.
1952 Telecaster: $189.50. Adjusted for inflation = $2117.90
1970 Telecaster: $294.50. Adjusted for inflation = $2248.00
 

ahiddentableau

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I picked my 50s AO tele out of a stack of them,my ears and hands decided. later I saw small issues, no way would I send what I have back, because what my ears told me, that trumps what my eyes found later.
something to consider.

that AO is one of the finest sounding tele’s I have ever owned, especially after A pickup swap. what Are your ears telling you?

Agree. I'd be making the decision on the basis of the sound and playability of the guitar. If it's a "good one" and sounds and plays great I'd be happy to live with a screwy ferrule and a couple of screws. If I didn't love the sound or playability, then it's a good reason to take it back to the shop.
 

57joonya

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Ok folks update from Fender…

No more stock so replacement not available

They are offering return and fix under warranty, return for full refund or keep guitar with 5% refund.

My initial feeling is keep it ,It plays/sounds great

Question is should I get them to fix under warranty

Decisions decisions will sleep on it 😂😂😂
I would definitely keep and a accept a 5% refund . Sounds fair to me
 

old wrench

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I will be very confident in saying there has never been a single Fender marketing picture, not in the original print catalogs, not in magazine ads and not in online website pictures where you can see enough detail to determine if the ferrules line up, the pickguard screws are flush or all the screws are perfect.

All standards have tolerances, the tighter those tolerances are the higher the price, and the increases are not linear.

Does the defect affect the sound?
Does the defect affect playability?
Does the defect affect the feel?
Can it be seen by the audience?

On the official Fender site they have an interesting feature - "hover to zoom"

After you zoom-in on a particular area of a guitar, you can then magnify that image to see the details clearly

Or, if you'd rather, you can just use your computers tools to magnify or zoom-in on which ever guitar image you find on Fender's advertisements

I'm just as confident you won't find any mis-aligned screws or partially set ferrules no matter how intently you scrutinize Fender's advertising images - all the guitars look perfect !!!



On a brand-new $2,000 dollar Fender guitar I think you can have certain minimum expectations of quality, and apparently the seller of the guitar agrees - they offered to either repair the guitar or give the OP a 5% discount

If it was mine, I'd take the $100 bucks and fix the screws and use a soldering iron to heat the ferrule up a bit and fully seat it - if you try and just tap that ferrule in without heating it up, it'll probably crack the finish around the ferrule

But, the guitar isn't mine - I'm just a picky sum-beech - with apparently "high standards", and probably a flat spot on the end of my nose from holding it too close to the grind-stone ;)

.
 

ben smith

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Just getting to grips with a new 50s original, guitar looks and plays great but found a few annoying “defects”. I’ve worked in QA/QC so maybe overzealous, what do you guys think - see photos. I’ve contacted fender uk for feedback, they can’t improve unless we tell them 😂

1. B string ferrule not fully inserted
2. Damaged screw on neck plate
3. Scratch plate screw poorly driven

I can live with/fix these things but a bit annoying for the price

Now if it was road worn 😂😂😂
I expect a perfect guitar when I spend big money, there is nothing wrong with expecting a perfect guitar. I seem to remember back in the late 90's early 2000's for me at least and I had 20+ guitars back then, QC issues were quite unheard of on top guitars (Gibson back then were on top of their game) fender japan was too.
 




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