#1
So I just got a new ESP LTD James Hetfield Vulture earlier this week, and hadn't had much time to mess around with it due to work and injuring myself trying to take on black ice while going down concrete stairs (the stairs won sprained ankle, sprained knee, and a 21 stitch salute where I gashed open my shin to the bone-VERY happy with myself I didn't pass out when seeing that lol).

Anyhow got around to actually being able to put it through it's paces last night-came unbelievably set up, the action was perfect, as was the intonation-first time I've ever encountered this on a new guitar straight from the factory, was VERY VERY impressed. The low frets looked unbelievably low, but had no buzz and were perfect, and the sound quality (after replacing the battery) is incredible. I totally love this guitar. My only complaint was the strings felt nasty (as I was prepared for from the factory), and my fingers were getting dirty from the ebony fretboard (again, prepared for since I know they stain it at times and have encountered this b4).

So I was going to take off the strings, give the fretboard a good cleaning to eliminate the dye bleed, and conditioning (Serial number showed was made 3/16 so a good conditioning was due). As soon as I took the strings off, much to my surprise, the nut popped off . At first I wasn't sure what had just happened as I've never seen that happen before, and sort of sat there in a stunned, shocked moment. After the initial panic that set in, I finished cleaning the fretboard, hit it with the conditioner and cleaned that off, then used some Elmers wood glue I had on hand (just a couple of dabs) to try and put the nut back in place. I then restrung it 6-1-5-2-4-3 to try keep the tension even, and it seems to be ok (yes I know I should have let the nut set totally, but-new guitar-had to play it!), action still fantastic, and the nut seems to be where it should be.

Yes, I think I fixed it, but for the price I paid (1200 US) I expected better...., My question is:

Should I return it for another one (will have to wait for the replacement to be delivered, and no guarantee the replacement was set up as well as this one)

Live with it as is?

Or take this as a sign to replace with a bone nut or Graph Tech nut (which would require work and $$$)
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Vulture-Satin Black
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Snakebyte-Snow White
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Iron Cross-Snow White
Jackson Pro Series Soloist SL2Q Trans Root Beer Quilt
Jackson SLATXMQ Soloist3-6-Trans Red Quilt
Jackson Pro Series Dinky DK2QM-Chlorine Burst
Jackson Pro Series Monarkh SC-Trans Purple Quilt
Ibanez Iron Label ARZIR20
Schecter Hellraiser C-1-Black Cherry Burst
Ibanez RG-770-Laser Blue
Jackson Kelly-Trans Green Flame
Line 6 Helix LT
Last edited by tc1072 at Feb 11, 2017,
#5
Personally, I'd take it back.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#6
Quote by tc1072
...Blah blah Black ice blah blah...

the nut popped off . I've never seen that happen before

...blah blah blah...

Should I return it for another one


Nuts are usually NOT heavily glued in. This is particularly true, I've found, the more expensive or custom the guitar is. It's usually just a spot of glue, and it always seems the finish is doing more to hold it in than the glue.

The cheap guitars have it slathered with glue and when you DO need to remove it (to replace it with a different material or to raise the nut slots, etc.), you end up breaking off half the neck to remove it.

Do not return your guitar, do not put a ton of glue on it (you'll regret it). You just finally have a really good guitar rather than a cheapo, and things are pretty much as they should be. A spot of glue will fix your issue and done with it. Send it back and you'll have a whole factory giggling somewhere.
#7
Yeah thats kind of lousy. I mean on principle I'd take it back, but if it works now and you can accept the big QC slip, then keep it by all means
I'm just a kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer.
#8
I've run a bit of research on this to see if I'm offbase. Here are the comments (pick your favorite):

"String pressure does most of the nut-holding on a guitar - it hardly has to be epoxied in place. Personally, I like wood glue, but some prefer something with less stick for easier removal in the future."

"Three drops of Titebond wood glue. Edit: TINY drops. "

"The purpose of the glue is just to hold the nut on when the strings are off pretty much. I put a couple small drops of wood glue on, and that's plenty. "

"That is a tad bit overkill. Depends on the size of the drop though. One drop is enough either way. "

"I say the above with the very important disclaimer that if you do it wrong, that nut will be a bitch to get out. For an amateur, I suggest one drop of Elmers or wood glue. It leaves a bit messier residue should you need to take the nut off than my method, but at least you won't be welding it in there by accident."

"Another vote for light Elmer's. You or whoever is owning your guitar at the next nut replacement will thank you for using the least amount possible. "

""If a nut pops loose I recommend using a couple of drops of Elmer's or wood glue to reattach it.
The use of permanent adhesives can create problems should the nut need to be removed for future repairs.

A small dab between the end of the fingerboard and the nut will do the trick and permit easy removal
that does not damage the bottom of the slot when removing..."

"Some nuts have been glued in a very tight channel using un-necessarily strong adhesives, this makes them very difficult if not impossible to remove in one piece."

"Doesn't matter. You're only going to use a miniscule amount, a couple of tiny drops."

"you want the nut rigidly held in place, but still removable years later with no damage to the surrounding wood."

"I build my fretboards so that i end up with a "sand to fit" nut that is a tap in fit. No glue needed. But I guess thats not entirely possible with a manufactured bass"

The latter fellow makes custom-built basses. The more expensive your guitar, the less likely your nut will be welded into place with too much glue...
#10
I have a few pricey guitars m'self, and none ever lost a nut. IDK if they used more/better glue or if the fit was just that tight. Bit it is what it is.
Sturgeon's 2nd Law, a.k.a. Sturgeon's Revelation: “Ninety percent of everything is crap.”

Why, yes, I am a lawyer- thanks for asking!

Log off and play yer guitar!

Strap on, tune up, rock out!
#11
Quote by dannyalcatraz
I have a few pricey guitars m'self, and none ever lost a nut. IDK if they used more/better glue or if the fit was just that tight. Bit it is what it is.


I'd venture to say that if your nuts fell off she'd send YOU back, you know ?
I've got several guitars with nuts that are a tapped-in fit into a slot. You tap them out of the slot sideways when you need to adjust or replace them.
#12
OP - up to you really. I've had that happen only on a $150 Dean that I bought to knock around the studio room.
None of my $500 and up guitars have had that issue.

Was this one Indonesian or Vietnamese built? My guess is on Indonesia. Some of the QC coming out of there is pure crap. I returned 3 Ibanez basses that were built there for a variety of different issues. One had the paint badly applied, the other - the frets would kill you and the 3rd one was cracked when they forced the neck in its socket. All off the same batch...

So on principle - I either ask for partial refund for repair or replace, but if the guitar is gorgeous and you feel good about it, leave it I guess. I'd still ask for partial refund though, that's about $150 luthier repair
#13
Thanks for the feedback guys, I used a couple of drops of wood glue when I restrung it-still plays beautifully so gonna keep it as-is. Had never experienced anything like that before so it kindof freaked me out a bit.

@diabolical Its Korean made, and other than the nut the rest of it is perfect, and never would have noticed that had I not taken all the strings off to condition the fretboard.
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Vulture-Satin Black
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Snakebyte-Snow White
ESP LTD James Hetfield Signature Iron Cross-Snow White
Jackson Pro Series Soloist SL2Q Trans Root Beer Quilt
Jackson SLATXMQ Soloist3-6-Trans Red Quilt
Jackson Pro Series Dinky DK2QM-Chlorine Burst
Jackson Pro Series Monarkh SC-Trans Purple Quilt
Ibanez Iron Label ARZIR20
Schecter Hellraiser C-1-Black Cherry Burst
Ibanez RG-770-Laser Blue
Jackson Kelly-Trans Green Flame
Line 6 Helix LT