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Thread: Is this normal or should I return this guitar?

  1. #1
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    Is this normal or should I return this guitar?

    Hi guys
    long time lurker ... finally got myself a PRS! Found a used SE Fredrik Akesson for a great price from Guitar Center ... item was listed as "great" condition and person at the store (not in my state) told me it was near mint and sent me pictures of it.

    Received it today and it looks amazing. However, the fretboard is really, really rough on the edges. I noticed at almost every fret there is a tiny crack in the fretboard. When you run your finger up and down either side of the fretboard it is very rough. This can't be normal --- right? Should I return this guitar to Guitar Center?

    Sorry if the pics are blurry -- tried to circle them in red to better highlight the cracks.



  2. #2
    Yes.

    The issue isn't whether or not the problem is usual or bad enough to justify your concern. The issue is... it bothers you enough to start a thread about it.

    Return it and get one you love.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by ]-[ @ n $ 0 |v| a T ! View Post
    Yes.

    The issue isn't whether or not the problem is usual or bad enough to justify your concern. The issue is... it bothers you enough to start a thread about it.

    Return it and get one you love.

    thanks. However, I really have my heart set on the SE Fredrik Akesson. I guess I am just wondering if this issue is "normal" for this guitar (due to th ebony fretboard, or whatever it may be, i dont know). I can live with it, it doesnt really affect the playability ... but just wanted to know if it is something "abnormal" and i should return the guitar and get a new Fredrik Akesson model.

    (i would hate to spend more money on a new model and have the same issue occur)

    edit: i guess according to this forum this issue is "normal" ? what do you guys think
    http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/gibs...big-issue.html
    Last edited by JCar24; 12-03-2012 at 06:40 PM.

  4. #4
    A♥ hoards guitars A♥ rugerpc's Avatar
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    I can't tell from your pics, sorry, but are you looking at the tangs of the frets or are there cracks that actually extend beyond the tangs?

    Also, how old is the guitar?

    Exposed tangs is normal. Cracks extending beyond the tangs is a different story. Even then, isf the frets are not loose of coming up it may only be a cosmetic problem.

    Your dilemma: Is that model really hard to find in your area and do you feel you overpaid on your good deal to have the cracks there?

    I have a friend who, when he passes on buying something, says, "I didn't want it more than money."
    Last edited by rugerpc; 12-03-2012 at 07:01 PM.
    Thbbbbbt...
    Check it out: Phillybri used to have a band: Resonance But he's soooo over them now!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rugerpc View Post
    I can't tell from your pics, sorry, but are you looking at the tangs of the frets or are there cracks that actually extend beyond the tangs?
    is some cases, the tangs seem to overhang the fretboard just a hair so that the neck binding is not smooth.

    However, what i had pictured were actual cracks that are on maybe 70% of the frets on both sides of the neck.

  6. #6
    A♥ hoards guitars A♥ rugerpc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCar24 View Post
    However, what i had pictured were actual cracks that are on maybe 70% of the frets on both sides of the neck.
    I have some guitars which are older, with maple, rosewood and ebony necks - none of them have any cracks extending beyond the tangs of the frets - just sayin'
    Thbbbbbt...
    Check it out: Phillybri used to have a band: Resonance But he's soooo over them now!

    sɹǝqɯǝɯ uɐıןɐɹʇsnɐ oןןǝɥ

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by rugerpc View Post
    Also, how old is the guitar?

    Exposed tangs is normal. Cracks extending beyond the tangs is a different story. Even then, isf the frets are not loose of coming up it may only be a cosmetic problem.

    Your dilemma: Is that model really hard to find in your area and do you feel you overpaid on your good deal to have the cracks there?
    Not sure how old the guitar is. However I think the earliest Fredrik Model there was released in 2011, so the guitar cant be that old.

    The model is extremely hard to find locally (one store SPECIALIZES in PRS in my neighborhood and they have every SE model on the floor EXCEPT the fredrik one lol).

    The thing is I got a REALLY good deal on it ($380!). New the guitar goes for around $650 and used at least $450-500. But just wondering if I got a lemon or if this is something that would have happened to a new Fredrik model in year or so anyways.

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    Sounds like the fingerboard is too dry which has made it shrink. A local repair man should be able to file the ends and sand/ polish.

  9. #9
    Cream Crackered Mikegarveyblues's Avatar
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    Seems normal to me.

    Probably just the fretboard has shrunk a touch due to humidity changes and the fret ends have cracked the latter a touch.

    If the fret ends feel rough when playing then you can take it to a tech and have him dress the ends so it plays smoother.

    Go over the guitar... If it sounds and plays great other than the slight cosmetic issue then keep it. If you're still not happy with the fret end issue or any other issue return it for peace of mind.

    This is normal to some degree though.

    EDIT: I should have read the post before mine!
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  10. #10
    Senior Member yankeebulldog's Avatar
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    I had an SE Akesson with the exact same issue. Ebony is much more prone to this especially on imported guitars. It's nothing a good tech can't fix with a file. As a rule, I prefer guitars with ebony boards to have binding although I've seen many a "new" Gibson with cracked binding due to the same issue.
    PRS Guitars - PS #4344 SC245, PS #4343 DC245, Ted SC245 Willcutt's WL Limited, Paul's Guitar
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by yankeebulldog View Post
    I had an SE Akesson with the exact same issue. Ebony is much more prone to this especially on imported guitars. It's nothing a good tech can't fix with a file. As a rule, I prefer guitars with ebony boards to have binding although I've seen many a "new" Gibson with cracked binding due to the same issue.
    interesting that you had an Akesson with the same issue. Did you get rid of it because of this issue?

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by JCar24 View Post
    thanks. However, I really have my heart set on the SE Fredrik Akesson. I guess I am just wondering if this issue is "normal" for this guitar (due to th ebony fretboard, or whatever it may be, i dont know).
    No, it's not normal. It might happen but it is not the norm. Return it. Get a new one instead of a used one. If it does it on the new one, send it back to PRS to repair under warranty.

    Quote Originally Posted by JCar24 View Post
    edit: I guess according to this forum this issue is "normal" ? what do you guys think
    http://www.mylespaul.com/forums/gibs...big-issue.html
    I didn't see anything in that link that even mentioned PRS SE models, much less the one you own.
    One Life

  13. #13
    Senior Member andy474x's Avatar
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    I have an Akesson, and haven't noticed this problem, but I've only had it a few months. But they are killer guitars. You should be able to have a tech dress the fret ends and still come out ahead financially. If the cracks are small and look like they're just in the clearcoat, you should be in good shape.
    -I'm no expert, but it seems to work and I haven't electrocuted myself yet. Which is pretty much the standard I live by.

    SE Custom 24 25th Anniversary - SE Akesson+57/08's - SE 30 Head/Cab

  14. #14
    Senior Member yankeebulldog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCar24 View Post
    interesting that you had an Akesson with the same issue. Did you get rid of it because of this issue?
    No, I just used a file on the fret ends. I actually used micro mesh on the whole back of the neck so the finish cracks weren't a problem.
    PRS Guitars - PS #4344 SC245, PS #4343 DC245, Ted SC245 Willcutt's WL Limited, Paul's Guitar
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  15. #15
    Senior Member AP515's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yankeebulldog View Post
    No, I just used a file on the fret ends. I actually used micro mesh on the whole back of the neck so the finish cracks weren't a problem.
    I did the same thing but mine was a USA model. I found a KILLER CE22 Standard that had a tough life before it came to me. The 6 trem screws were set wrong and the knife edge was riding on the screw shafts, the trem was not level, but the biggest problem was the frets were rough. The board was really dry and the wood had shrunk and you could feel the tangs sticking out of the ends of the fretboard. I taped the fretboard and filed the ends of the frets. Then I used 000 steel wool and polished them. Then I oiled the board and let it set and soak up the oil. Felt just like my well taken care of models after that and because of it's condition I got it at a really good price. Now it is a fabulous guitar, one of my favorites.

    If you are not confortable doing the work you can have a tech do it, but you don't have to return it unless you want to.
    1988 CE24, 1995 CE22, 2000 SC, 2006 Cu24 AP, 2003 Standard, 2006 SC AP, 2007 CuRo22, 2010 Starla Stoptail, 2010 Mira
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  16. #16
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    thank you everyone for your responses what a great communty here.

    ive decided to return the gutiar today to guitar center. the cracks are not just cosmetic -- they can be felt easily and sometimes scrap my fingers when playing barre chords, etc.

    a trusted guitar tech is kinda far away from me and with a 1 year old at home i doont have a lot of spare time to be running arond town

    beautiful guitar though.

  17. #17
    Senior Member yankeebulldog's Avatar
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    You might check out the new Nick Cantanese model if you liked the Akesson. It's got binding but no fret markers if that bothers you.
    PRS Guitars - PS #4344 SC245, PS #4343 DC245, Ted SC245 Willcutt's WL Limited, Paul's Guitar
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  18. #18
    Senior Member swede71's Avatar
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    Nothing wrong with your guitar.No cracks,just the fret tangs as others have already told u about.If fret edges are rough look up a local luthier and make him polish them for you.After that is done its time to rock,play the **** out of that thing for years.
    I de-modded my CU22 soapbar and made a factory spec setup.Im in love again.I very much believe now PRS guitars are perfect as they are.

  19. #19
    Geezer wilerty's Avatar
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    Fret sprout ... Most guitar centers have a tech that works there. Have them either fix it or keep it. I've had fret sprout on two USA PRS. Both were easily fixed by my dealer.

    There can be a huge difference in the climate and also with the wood ... and fret sprout does happen. A guitar may be perfectly made in the humid summer months and develope sprout in the winter because of humidity. If you realy like the guitar, I would try to get it fixed at GC ...
    Bill

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  20. #20
    I can't see anything beyond fret tangs..If the fret ends feel sharp have them smoothed by a tech. This can happen to many guitars due to seasonal climate changes. It's easy to fix.
    2007 SCT RW Amber
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