I’m Jim Anderson and I am a fretted instrument repairman……..not a Luthier. In 1971, my friend Ken Yates and I started The Notorious Guitar Hospital which I continue to own and operate today. For over forty-five years now, I have been servicing, repairing and restoring guitars, mandolins, banjos and other fretted instruments. For thirty of those years, I had the privilege of being a Factory Authorized Warranty Repairman for Gibson, Martin, Fender, Ovation, Takamine, Guild, Taylor, Mossman and Washburn instrument manufacturers.
These Factory Warranties meant much more than just getting paid to work on manufacturers’ instruments. It meant achieving a high level of expertise in fretted instrument repair and, just as important, ACCESS TO FACTORY PARTS. In the early days of my profession, it was next to impossible to get things like Gibson fret wire, or bridges, or tuning keys, or fingerboard inlays, or Martin decals, or Martin binding, or Guild pickguards…..the list could go on and on. The wooden parts I learned to make…….necks, sides, kerfing, backs, tops and bridges. Always bridges, dozens and dozens over the years. And inlays….all manners of pearl and abalone position markers. Access to factory parts immediately changed everything.
I would have never gotten these Warranties without the hundreds of letters that clients wrote on my behalf. That’s right….hundreds over a decade. I want to thank all of those people again and AGAIN. Bless your hearts. You put me on the map. You helped me raise the quality of my shop and the service that I could provide to you. You helped give my shop a national reputation and drove hundreds of broken instruments to my bench. It was a very humbling experience. Thank you.
Most of these Warranty contracts were established in the 1970’s and in those days that meant returning those manufactures’ instruments to Original Factory Condition. The jobs varied from repairing electronics (on board), tuning keys, nuts, frets, fingerboards, inlays, bindings, to neck, bridge, top, side or back replacement….as well as finish work to match. The work had to be identical to the factories’. The work quality required me to provide the same warranty to the company as the company warranty did to the customer. All work was guaranteed and I never had a return.
Now that I have retired from All Factory Warranty work, I devote my time to customer service, repair, restoration and making repair videos. I still love it. My workshop is closed to the public now, but I do maintain a public meeting/workspace inside of Carpenter’s Music World located at 1090-B Kietzke Lane in Reno, Nevada. I’m there Thursdays from 1:00 until 4:00 and by appointment. We have lots of parts and we’re still getting organized, but if you’re in the neighborhood drop on by…..I’ll be glad to see you.
Best to you………Jim Anderson