GIBSON U.S.A. ? REALLY ? UH, NOT !

MR D

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Today, as I was ordering some Kluson 'Revolution' Locking Tuning Machines from a Custom Guitar shop it was pointed out to me by the shop owner that although Kluson is an American Company that most, if not all, of their products (especially Tuning Machines) are made in Asia...Kluson 'Revolutions', IIRC, being made in South Korea...this kinda made me balk at buying them for my GIBSON U.S.A. made guitar. However, having put them on an SG Standard and being impressed by their ability to stay/hold tune on a correctly set-up guitar, I proceeded with the purchase.

I was then informed by the CUSTOM Guitar shop owner that GIBSON is putting CHINESE TUNING MACHINES on their Guitars !!! I had to say "EXCUSE ME, WHAT ? Could you repeat that ?" I did not quite believe that, BUT as sad as this sounds, it is true.......the 2019 SG 'Original' I purchased has TM's that say 'GIBSON DELUXE' on the T.M enclosures, but they are made by a company in S. Korea called 'PING'. FFS, One reason I bought that guitar was for those T.M.'s classic 'Original' look, yes? AND the outside of the Tuning Machine enclosure case says clearly: 'GIBSON DELUXE', it sure does.

I ask this: IS THIS NOT FRAUD ???? The Tuning Machine is not made by GIBSON USA, NO, ITS NOT !!! The Tuning Machine should actually say 'PING' on it as that is who made it !!! BUT, again, it says 'GIBSON DELUXE' right on it !

I stated to the owner of the Custom Guitar shop that at least I was glad to be buying 'AMERICAN' made Tuning Machines to put on my GIBSON U.S.A. guitar and he said: "Hold on, it gets worse: Kluson's is getting almost all of their of the products manufactured in Asia too, and the 'Revolutions' Locking Tuning Machines are manufactured in South Korea.".I wasn't too surprised but still I wanted to puke.

Having played Gibson U.S.A. guitars almost 100% exclusively my entire adult life I surely feel betrayed that this company would charge me sky-high prices for a guitar, and then have the nerve to put CHINESE Tuning Machines on it and, through omission, lie about it too. FFS !!! and NOT only that, but frikkin LIE about it and also to have the ABSOLUTE BALLS to put 'GIBSON DELUXE' on these Chinese made Tuning Machine enclosures ! WOW, that got me HOPPIN frikkin mad.

So, now the question is begged: What else is GIBSON putting in/on its Guitars and masquerading around in full view of the Guitar buying public and flat-out lying about their guitars being 'Made in the USA'/American ?

WOW.
 

Von Trapp

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One could argue that many Gibson guitars are over priced anyway so the fact that they want to make a sht ton off the tuners as well should come as no surprise. I can't personally say that I ever experienced a decline in tuner quality though so where they're made don't matter in that respect, if that's any consolation.
 

Von Trapp

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Also, one can hardly ask them to stamp MADE IN U.S.A (except for tuners) on every guitar.
 

Go Nigel Go

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Yup. And it may actually be BETTER for you the end user in the full analysis. There is skilled and unskilled labor in every nation on earth. Due to economic disparities (which is a whole new level of political discussion I won't get into), you may get a better product made in another country for a cheaper price if the skilled labor there costs less than unskilled labor here. Is it fair? No. There are a ton of issues beyond the scope of what I can/desire get into here, but the only question you need to answer for yourself here is whether or not the tuners are of sufficient quality to justify the cost. A lot of it will come down to the design first, and to a slightly lesser extent the workmanship. If a tuner works smoothly, and has sufficient strength and mechanical advantage, it is going to work just fine. Would it bug you if it was made in Switzerland by apprentice clock makers? Would it make any difference when tuning your guitar?

If we want to talk political economies, I have a whole host of thoughts and opinions, some of which are sure to pi$$ off somebody in every camp.
 

DrBGood

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Maybe all screws on your Gibson are from Asia too. As are frets. As are plastic control covers. As is the pickguard. As is the truss rod cover. As is the actual truss rod. As is hardware on the Gibson case. As is the thread that was used to sew the Asian vinyl. As is ... As is ...

MON DIEU !
 

plankton

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People really need to get over the whole "Made in the USA" thing as being the be-all, end-all of guitar manufacturing. Every guitar I own was built in Asia and they're all great instruments.

And as was pointed out above, Gibsons are traditionally made with mahogany and rosewood, and people get upset when they're not, but I can assure you that wood didn't come from the USA.
 

Rusty Chops

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I bought a standard PRS (MIA) that featured mostly hardware from Korea and perhaps the pickups too.
Let the buyer be unaware
 

MR D

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Yup. And it may actually be BETTER for you the end user in the full analysis. There is skilled and unskilled labor in every nation on earth. Due to economic disparities (which is a whole new level of political discussion I won't get into), you may get a better product made in another country for a cheaper price if the skilled labor there costs less than unskilled labor here. Is it fair? No. There are a ton of issues beyond the scope of what I can/desire get into here, but the only question you need to answer for yourself here is whether or not the tuners are of sufficient quality to justify the cost. A lot of it will come down to the design first, and to a slightly lesser extent the workmanship. If a tuner works smoothly, and has sufficient strength and mechanical advantage, it is going to work just fine. Would it bug you if it was made in Switzerland by apprentice clock makers? Would it make any difference when tuning your guitar?

If we want to talk political economies, I have a whole host of thoughts and opinions, some of which are sure to pi$$ off somebody in every camp.

Right, I considered NOT posting this as it can get into politics. I also considered the woods aspect...BUT decided that woods are not Man-Made in the sense that, as far as I know, a Human Being just can not make a tree.

In the final analysis I decided to post this because a lot of 'Americans' still buy products because they are American Made ! I happen to love Gibson Guitars, for a lot of reasons. One of those reasons is the fact that they are AMERICAN made.

I was unable to post a picture of the offending 'GIBSON DELUXE' Tuning Machines. I even tried the ole I-Pad Mini that usually works, but not this time.
 

MR D

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People really need to get over the whole "Made in the USA" thing as being the be-all, end-all of guitar manufacturing. Every guitar I own was built in Asia and they're all great instruments.

And as was pointed out above, Gibsons are traditionally made with mahogany and rosewood, and people get upset when they're not, but I can assure you that wood didn't come from the USA.


IDK what kind of guitars you have, or how much they cost. And which is a better instrument is a highly subjective matter, BUT, maybe as a personal experiment.... put a comparable new $1700 Guitar made in Asia by an Asian company next to a new $1700 Gibson SG Standard 'Modern'. Since I will not be there when you do it, only you will know which is really the better instrument.
If I had to bet on which I would prefer, my $$$/Euro/Yen would be on the GIBSON, But, who knows ? YMMV.
 

cerebral gasket

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P.W. = Ping Works
These are from a 2004 SG Special.

full
 
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MR D

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If you were handed two guitars, and one made in America and the other made in Asia, would you be able to tell them apart? If not, your reasons for loving American-made guitars are spurious.

Yes I would. I picked up an Epiphone imitation SG a while back, and was struck immediately by the fact that the G-400 sounded like a plastic POS. It surely did....But it is just not fair to compare a $1500 Gibson SG to an $600 (?) Epiphone G-400 though. It just isn't. One is a High priced Guitar and the other one isn't.

A better way to determine brands true value is to get one from each company that is equal in price on the new guitar market, then you can have a good old shoot-out.

I have been doing this far too long to not know a good guitar within seconds of picking one up...and conversely, I know a wanna-be when I pick one up as well. I was going to say POS but, wait, I did, didn't I ?
 

MR D

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I've only replaced tuners on second hand guitars because they were damaged by the previous owner. I usually replace with same type of tuner being a Grover 135N and never had any issues with the originals or replacements.

P.W. = Ping Works
These are from a 2004 SG Special.

full

Yep, that looks like them. I have yet to take a look at the Pings since I started the thread... they are around here somewhere, may be at another place though. 'PW', I'll take a look.
I was going to sell them too and now that I know what I know...IDK if I should, 2 wrongs and all that, u kno?
 

Go Nigel Go

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Right, I considered NOT posting this as it can get into politics. I also considered the woods aspect...BUT decided that woods are not Man-Made in the sense that, as far as I know, a Human Being just can not make a tree.

In the final analysis I decided to post this because a lot of 'Americans' still buy products because they are American Made ! I happen to love Gibson Guitars, for a lot of reasons. One of those reasons is the fact that they are AMERICAN made.

I was unable to post a picture of the offending 'GIBSON DELUXE' Tuning Machines. I even tried the ole I-Pad Mini that usually works, but not this time.
Two questions; 1) Would there be anything in the photograph that would show us something that would affect the discussion? Something tells me this all boils down to how you feel about your purchase for reasons not related to the quality. and 2) Do you apply the same "American made" standards to your iPad or automobile? If you really think this through, I think you will find it far too complex a problem to even consider if your ultimate goal is just to buy a good guitar.
 

donepearce

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Yes I would. I picked up an Epiphone imitation SG a while back, and was struck immediately by the fact that the G-400 sounded like a plastic POS. It surely did....But it is just not fair to compare a $1500 Gibson SG to an $600 (?) Epiphone G-400 though. It just isn't. One is a High priced Guitar and the other one isn't.

A better way to determine brands true value is to get one from each company that is equal in price on the new guitar market, then you can have a good old shoot-out.

I have been doing this far too long to not know a good guitar within seconds of picking one up...and conversely, I know a wanna-be when I pick one up as well. I was going to say POS but, wait, I did, didn't I ?
Talking of spurious... I wasn't talking about comparing a bad Asian guitar with a good US guitar. And while we are at it, there is absolutely nothing second rate about Epiphones. My ES339 has a build quality that would shame most Gibson's.
 


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