local repair shop gouging on repair costs. owner's mental health in question

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by saxophonist56, Sep 17, 2013.

  1. saxophonist56

    saxophonist56 Piano User

    Apr 12, 2013
    modesto ca 95350
    i needed valve stem felts for my king 600. instead of just selling them to me they claimed they needed the horn to select the felts. i had already brought in one of the valves but this was not sufficient. they needed the horn. okay i got the horn. they took it back and then brought up the felts. i was being billed not just for the felts but five dollars labor for fitting the correct felts...wtf??? even tho they were not installed. this same shop charged me 67 dollars to adjust my third valve slide. claimed they needed to measure the tubing....wtf? i looked them up on yelp...seems lots of people po'd with them. previously had asked what a refret on my vintage guitar would cost....after some time they came back and told me i'd be better off buying a new guitar.....wtf??? this owner actually knows trumpets but somewhere he's gone off the deep end.
  2. Conntribution

    Conntribution Fortissimo User

    Dec 25, 2010
    Lloyd Harbor NY.
    Sounds like simple greed is at work here. Which can, I suppose be considered a form of mental illness.
    Measure the tubing. I've never heard that one before. As if the factory didn't do it properly....
  3. Recursion

    Recursion Mezzo Piano User

    Jun 22, 2012
    Cape Coral, FL
    Sorry, it's a shame when a local shop's "Gone Wild!!!!!"

    I was gouged for a weld one time, and then again for a repair attempt that ruined a horn. Luckily, I found another local shop that understands the notion of repeat business.

    Though I've only said this to car dealers, it could work here: "I'll gladly pay someone else more just so you don't get my business."
  4. musicalmason

    musicalmason Forte User

    Dec 14, 2003
    I'm not about to jump on the "bad tech" bandwagon just yet....the only way to measure a horns valves to make sure the felts are the proper thickness requires having the horn, not just a valve. $5 to make sure your valves are aligned is reasonable. "Measure tubes" could mean measure the distance between the tubes and align them. $67 to fix an out of alignment 3rd slide is not unheard of, especially if it was stuck, or also required lapping/cleaning. Regarding your guitar, maybe that was his honest opinion of the neck, knowing what the markup is on new instruments, I'm sure he'd make more money doing that repair than selling you a guitar. He was saving you money on that one...as far as yelp goes, I place no weight on those reviews of music stores. Most people who write them are misinformed, and most are already mad. That is one major flaw with yelp (and yahoo/google reviews). People are more motivated to write negative reviews than positive, so they are always swayed and not really accurate.

    It sounds to me that this tech has some integrity, won't sell parts unless he knows they are right, and is charging a fair price for his knowledge. But I could be wrong, I don't know him, maybe he's greedy, I'm sure that $5 will be paying for his new Mercedes.
  5. stumac

    stumac Fortissimo User

    Oct 19, 2008
    Flinders Vic Australia
    While I sympathise with your feeling ripped off, put it in perspective, the repair shop I use charges $90/hour for labour, your $5 to check the valve alignment so you get the correct thickness of felt is reasonable, representing 3 & 1/3 min work. What was the trouble with your 3rd slide? If both the fixed and moving parts needed realigning and cleaning to make it smooth and fast I consider $67 not excessive. My latest bill was $100 to have 2 siezed slides freed on a 1933 King, the tuning slide bow had to be unsoldered and each leg extracted seperately, reassembled and aligned.

    Compare with what other professions charge, My Doctor charges $60 for a 6 min consultation in which he takes my blood pressure and asks if I have any problems.
    My Lawyer charges $450/hour and neither will give a guarentee on their work.

    Regards, Stuart.
  6. Dale Proctor

    Dale Proctor Utimate User

    Jul 20, 2006
    Heart of Dixie
    Five bucks for fitting the right felts is a good deal if they checked valve alignment to select the right ones. I don't know why they weren't installed on the horn if that was the case, though. Depending on what needed to be done, the slide "adjustment" may or may not be a rip-off.
  7. turtlejimmy

    turtlejimmy Utimate User

    Jun 6, 2010
    I'm not sure about the trumpet repairs, but I can tell you that your repair shop's idea about the guitar is probably way off base (unless the "vintage" guitar is a cheap one, with damage). I'm just assuming you mean an acoustic guitar ..... For one thing, buying a "new guitar" doesn't replace a "vintage guitar", especially if the vintage guitar is a Martin. The cost of a fret job from somebody you'd want doing the work would get you a new guitar that isn't worth having (cheap, plywood piece of junk). Our local guy (who is very good) charges around $150 to $200 for a fret job. My advice: take your guitar somewhere else!!!

  8. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008

    Take it to a Luthier! If they call themselves that, they're generally pretty good!
  9. tobylou8

    tobylou8 Utimate User

    Dec 22, 2008
    I've had people complain about weeds in the lawn. They typically say, "I paid you to spray those last year. I want a refund"! I try to explain that it's a MAINTENANCE issue and it has to be done on a regular annual/yearly basis. Maintenance is were business makes money. $5 for felts, not enough. $67 for a slide adjustment, depends on what had to be done. As far as Yelp (and others) reviews, worthless.
  10. turtlejimmy

    turtlejimmy Utimate User

    Jun 6, 2010

    YES!!! Anyone who can build a guitar from scratch is likely going to do a whiz bang fret job. :thumbsup:


Share This Page