#1
Ever since I stated playing bass about 5 years ago Ive been tinkering with all of my instruments, and I've been considering putting this need to tinker to good use and start up a service doing set ups, custom wiring, pickup and hardware instillation, and other services. I have a lot of experience with electronics after rewiring all of my instruments and building a few pedals, as well as working for my neighbor doing home theater installation a few years back. I've done pickup replacements and action setups on a few of my friends guitar and they have been pleased with my work. As far as complete builds go, I have done one one custom purpleheart fretless bass build that turned out pretty well and in turn I learned a great deal. Would these skills be enough to have a service doing this kind of stuff out of my house? I am very confident in my soldering and electronics skills but not so much in my set up skills mainly with anything with a floyd, seeing as that the only of my guitars Ive ever taken in to a shop is my Ibanez with a edge III trem. Would it be best to practice setups on my own instruments for a while longer? I do have 2 older cheap guitars to practice on and a squier bass to practice on as well, would practicing on these be something to do before I officially start up?

If anybody does anythings similar I would love some advice and tips, I know there are a few luthiers here so any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated
Gear:
Ibanez RG4EXQM1
Fender Jazz V
Yahama Pacifica 112
Acoustic B200h
2 custom 1x15 cabs
Vox AD30VT
too many pedals
#2
I do it for people, I set up their guitars and basses, can fix some pedals, replace pickups, fixed a broken neck, and retube amps and replace speakers, for the most part its not to bad, but you need to know what your doing and not to mess anything up, and you need to learn how much to charge and what your time is really worth
amps
Vox Ac 30 (main)
Fender Supersonic with Krank Krankenstien 4x12
OR 50 with 4 x 12
Gassing for ibanes airplane flanger
#3
Something like a setup, which in theory in a non intrusive job, shouldn't be what holds you back. You obviously know the basics of the job. If you happen to take on a customer with a floyd rose then you hope on here, read a quick tutorial and have at it. We're musicians, and we all have musician friends, and for the most part we're all broke. Offer to do the work at a low price and with a quick turn around and there are bound to be people that say ok.
And if you really want to learn the harder stuff and build confidence try going to a local repair shop and seeing if they'll take on an apprentice. Most people would love the free help. You'll probably have to prove yourself before they trust you to do more than string changes but it'll be worth it in the end.

-Joe
#4
Quote by inkandlead
Something like a setup, which in theory in a non intrusive job, shouldn't be what holds you back.

I disagree with this. I would expect that setups would be a frequent request of customers. Additionally, many other jobs require a setup (or at least aspects) to be done as well: installing a new bridge, any refretting, anything that requires removing a neck, setting it up for a different string gauge.

I don't say this to discourage you from doing it. Just be smart and know what you are getting into. Daid had great advice. Do as much work as possible for yourself and friends, and if you don't know how to do something, or have doubts, just tell the customer. They will respect you more for telling them that than if you jump in over your head and mess things up.

I hope it goes well!
#5
ok this all helps a ton thanks for the help everybody
Gear:
Ibanez RG4EXQM1
Fender Jazz V
Yahama Pacifica 112
Acoustic B200h
2 custom 1x15 cabs
Vox AD30VT
too many pedals
#6
Quote by inkandlead
If you happen to take on a customer with a floyd rose then you hop on here, read a quick tutorial and have at it.
There is no way you should take on work that you dont know how to perfom, even if you can look it up later on the internet.

Would you take your car to a mechanic who couldnt fix your brakes?




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#7
Sorry. I should rephrase... You shouldn't start a business on something you don't understand fully. What I meant was if you do have "alot of experience" with doing some tech work and setting up guitars except for those with a floyd rose than its something that could be picked up easier than going blind. The ideas are the same. Find a friend that trusts you with their stuff and try it out. You'll only learn by doing.
If a guy had 5 years experience putting brakes in a Toyota I'd let him put brakes on my Honda. Thats all I'm saying.
#8
I'm trying to do the same thing. I've been working at a music store for a few years now, and when I started, I didn't know which string was which on a guitar. Now I do setupsm fret dressing, and electronics modification for the teachers and other employees at the store. I've been trying to find a place to apprentice at, since we're a corporately-owned store and our tech isn't allowed to have me around (he works at another location, we send things to him). I've done a lot of reading and practiced on my own guitars, but I really want to learn from a professional tech. Best of luck to you!
I Japanese Fenders
MIJ '86 Strat, MIJ '95 Foto Flame Tele, Jackson JSX-94
Schecter C-1 Classic 3TSB, Takamine EG544SC-4C
Warwick Corvette Fretless MIJ '89 P-Bass Lyte
Fender Geddy Lee Sig Bass, Ibanez DTT700 Destroyer