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My Favorite Guitar Store Called... Seems I Broke a Guitar After I Left


Lockbody

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:blink:

After work yesterday I stopped by my favorite haunt to hang for a little while and check out some guitars. There wasn't anything in there that I couldn't live without, so I just pulled a few different ones down to check out an old Vox AC15 that just came in. One guitar that sounded pretty decent though the AC15 was a MIK Gretsch 5125 Electromatic, the one with the singlecoils.

So anyway, once it's time to go I hang everything back up and take off. Now, I'm really careful when I hang a guitar back up, especially in this store. I've been coming to Highland Music since the mid-eighties, and the owner has been very good to me (and just about every other musician in Birmingham) over the years, so I always tune 'em up if they need it while I'm playing them, make sure I don't leave a bunch fingerprints behind, and when I hang them up I make sure they're not still moving when I walk away.

Well, on my way home I get a text from the manager, who is also a friend saying: "You know that Gretsch you were playing? It just fell off the hanger and smashed on the floor!" I call and he said he didn't know what happened, but sure enough, it fell, and the owner will probably be pissed (as you might expect), and want to know who the last person was to play it. There's a security cam tape, but the area where the imports are is right on the edge of the screen, and you really can't tell what happens.

I did get him to admit that he's walked in a couple of times to guitars on the floor, and his and some other customers opinion was that the ceiling fans sometimes cause the lighter guitars to sway in the hangers and eventually fall.

Now I don't have a problem owning up to it if I was in the wrong, but I can't see it. I'm going down there this afternoon to watch the tape, but the owner won't be there.

What should I expect... pay for damages, buy the guitar, tell him he should make sure his guitars are secure and that his employees should know what's going on with his stuff and that he should turn the fans off and let the employees turn the air conditioner on(My wife's suggestion)?

The wife also says it's karma that means I should stay out of that store! :lol:

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Wouldn't he have some sort of insurance to cover stuff like that (I don't know - I'm not a business guy)? How much is a used import Gretsch worth?

I'm thinking that if a fan can blow them off the wall, this guy needs better hangers.

Tough call with a long-time relationship/friendship on the line. Good luck.

OR

Buy it, send it to Greg or Jay, then to Stike. One bitchin' 5125 Electromatic.

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It would be good to have the manager there so everyone sees/hears the same thing. All the more so since the two people are both friends. And it would be good to put the same guitar in the same place and crank up the ceiling fans. Not to mention looking at the hangers to see if they are securely mounted and whether they show signs of movement (indicating past issues, since this has apparently happened before.

Unfortunate, but there are some things that are a "cost of doing business"......And it also sounds like a lesson for them, esp if this has happened before and they, apparently, did nothing to correct it.....Do they go after someone every time it happens?

Hard to have something come between friends, but also not "friend-like" to try to assume the worst about you.

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I'm thinking that if a fan can blow them off the wall, this guy needs better hangers.

Yeah, I got the text a good ten minutes after I left, and I know I hung out for around ten minutes after playing the Gretsch.

I understand how this type of thing can happen with something like a Telecaster, but man, have you seen that big, fat headstock on the Gretsches?

Django49, I don't think they're assuming the worst, I was just the last one to touch it.

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So lets get this straight, 20 minutes or so after you put the guitar up it falls?

Sorry but if you would have put it up "wrong" it would have fell almost immediately, the fact that they have had guitars fall all by them self's is the clincher here.

They need better wall hangers, period!

These come to mind, pretty much idiot proof

http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=hercules+guitar+hangers&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&tbm=shop&cid=2974874873407073677&sa=X&ei=ogOcT8LCLYLc2gXhu7DzDg&ved=0CJwBEPICMAQ

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my son takes drum lessons at a small store that has cheap guitars hanging on the wall. If I'm bored waiting, and feel like pulling one down, I always hand it back to an employee to hang on the wall. I don't trust those hangers.

good luck.

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my son takes drum lessons at a small store that has cheap guitars hanging on the wall. If I'm bored waiting, and feel like pulling one down, I always hand it back to an employee to hang on the wall. I don't trust those hangers.

good luck.

You are a wise man.

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So anyway, once it's time to go I hang everything back up and take off. Now, I'm really careful when I hang a guitar back up, especially in this store. I've been coming to Highland Music since the mid-eighties, and the owner has been very good to me (and just about every other musician in Birmingham) over the years, so I always tune 'em up if they need it while I'm playing them, make sure I don't leave a bunch fingerprints behind, and when I hang them up I make sure they're not still moving when I walk away.

Well, on my way home I get a text from the manager, who is also a friend saying: "You know that Gretsch you were playing? It just fell off the hanger and smashed on the floor!" I call and he said he didn't know what happened, but sure enough, it fell, and the owner will probably be pissed (as you might expect), and want to know who the last person was to play it. There's a security cam tape, but the area where the imports are is right on the edge of the screen, and you really can't tell what happens.

Your boy may have contacted you 'cause he's your boy, but you shouldn't hear anything beyond that, except for maybe a wisecrack or nickname. B)

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So lets get this straight, 20 minutes or so after you put the guitar up it falls?

Sorry but if you would have put it up "wrong" it would have fell almost immediately, the fact that they have had guitars fall all by them self's is the clincher here.

Not necessarily. As mentioned, Tele's can be tricky and even some G&L headstocks, placed incorrectly, have fallen on us. Luckily, I tend to drop my own personal guitars more than the customers. B)

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I would be suprised if the store uses their Ins. Co. for this relatively cheap claim, commercial policies have generally higher deductibles, most of the policies I sold started at 5k for a small business and went up from there, smaller deductibles are avail but the policy premium gets stupid high for most small businesses. I doubt a $500 (guess) import anything would cause them to file a claim as it makes no sense to do so, the dude with the SUV thru his store front definitely has a legit claim!

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My understanding is that a store cannot compel a customer to pay for damaged merchandise unless there was some kind of intent to damage. Even if you were careless in putting the guitar back on the wall, you are not responsible. You could turn around and claim the store is negligent because a falling guitar could injure or kill a small child who happens to be standing underneath it, so thus the store is responsible to have their merchandise secured. If they allow you to hang it up, they are still responsible for it being securely hung.

Besides, anything more than a few seconds before falling seems to me like you must have put it properly in the hanger.

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A store that allows customers to take merchandise off a display for inspection and testing and put it back without inspection is not in any position to claim they did not assume the risks involved.

Was there any kind of "you break it you bought it" sign prominently and conspicuously posted (before the incident)?

I think a small claims judge would tell them to F#$k off since there is no showing it broke while in your possession.

F#$k em!

morningstar

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Agree with the general sentiment here. I am all for standing up and doing the right thing when I've done something wrong, but this doesn't sound like the case here. Not that it happened/didn't happen, but you have no way of knowing if some other person walked in in the 20 minutes after you hung it up (correctly) and was the actual cause of the incident. It could have also been the fan.

Unfortunately, it's not your problem here, since there are far too many factors involved, and the actual incident was sufficiently removed in time. If you had still been in the store at the time it fell and it could be shown that nobody had touched it in the interim, by all means, feel free to pony up some repair cost or whatever. The fact that you were already well on your merry way...not so much.

They DO have insurance that covers stuff like that, but maybe with whatever their deductible situation is, it may not be worth it for them to pursue and they'll have to self insure that mishap.

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I think his insurance should pay for it and if not, you make sure you pay no more than store cost.

Better yet, make sure you pay nothing, OP. If the store owner presses the issue, tell him you would prefer that all future communications regarding this issue be between your respective legal counsels. That'll end it right there.

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Well, since you said it was your "favorite guitar store," I would say that you should talk to them and work it out. They know you, and you know them, and they know you didn't do anything wrong. Good people will come to some honorable, honest solution in a case like this.

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I'd think something like the 'Three Second Rule' applies here...but NOT as in 'music' videos. :lol: That is, if it stayed in the hanger for more than a minute (a reasonable amount of time), you're good. If you're out of the store when it happened, they could just as well blame it on earthquakes brought on by fracking, for all they know.

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