Resonable Price for Neck and Fret Adjustments
I took my guitar into our local shop. My high E string was very tinny when I fretted it on the second fret. They said they had to adjust the neck and possibly file a couple of frets down. They charged $50. Does that seem to be a reasonable price for that work? On top of that, they didn't do a good job, but I'll be taking it back and hoping they can readjust, but I was curious what folks have been charged for similar repairs.
Depends on what they meant by "adjust the neck". That can be anything from a tweak of the truss rod to multiple removals/refits to get a set of shims just right. Time is money, so the more work it takes, the more it'll cost. I've done neck adjustments that took 2 minutes... and neck adjustments that took two hours.
A complete setup, which might include fret dressing, can run $75 or so. That involves using a precision straightedge to identify any low frets, filing them level and polishing them up, restringing the guitar, adjusting the action at the bridge, adjusting the intonation, and adjusting the truss rod. Some shops will throw in new strings with a full setup, others will add them on to the price.
But I'm gonna guess that what they did was dress a couple of frets, and adjust the truss rod. Anytime you're dressing frets, you SHOULD check the action to see if an adjustment is needed, and that only takes a few minutes. Dressing a single fret because of a nick or burr should run about $2.50.
But repair jobs don't cost $5. Many shops have minimums - and a $50 minimum for any repair job isn't unheard of. They've got labor to pay for, and paperwork to keep. And the tools to do it right are expensive - that precision straightedge I mentioned can run upwards of $100.
So the price doesn't seem outrageously high to me. But if they didn't do it right, they should be prepared to fix it at no charge. The work you had done is among the easiest tech jobs out there.
Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL
Thanks NoteBoat. I don't necessarily have a problem with the charge. I just live in a small town without a lot of options so I wanted to make sure I wasn't getting ripped off. I agree that he's going to need to take a look at it again at no charge because the job he did was not sufficient.