What if Gibson go under?

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Comments

  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 2,984Member
    edited March 14
    There is that measurable thing called lineage. I saw the Martin factory video where there was nothing but efficiency - I am no luddite but semi-skilled workers put at a work station and their only job is to steam and bend sides (others screwing on machine heads) on a soul destroying production line isn't exactly the proud, leather-aproned wood-store-to-shop-floor master luthier we are led to believe exists. But the lineage and birth place is still there and that's important to the market.

    The key is location location location and it's all that's propped up the Gibson company for the last few years. They have traded on the past too much and tried to be too cheap, believe it or not !

    Fewer guitars, better quality, higher prices and a rebuilt reputation A reduced but better skilled workforce and more select customers is the way they should go.

    You simply cannot bring such premium to the masses without the quality falling.

    Any other solution will not be Gibson but licensed immitation.
  • nicholaspaulnicholaspaul Posts: 799Member

    Megi - It's not what I think about the USA/China guitar, it's what the market thinks and you can guarantee it will put a premium on one made in the USA.

    Good point. It’s like looking down on Mexican strats. As a friend of mine pointed out, most US made strats are made by Mexicans anyhow. And as we all know, tone is in the fingers not the guitar etc etc.
    I suppose if you’re buying a high end instrument, heritage could be an issue, but if you’re it to play, who cares. Play the thing to the ground!

  • MegiMegi Posts: 6,953Member
    edited March 15
    Unscientific as it was, I was just curious about Kevin's own opinion on the hypothetical question I posted, as one potential future customer. I think it's probably true that the US manufacture is a key ingredient of any future "Gibson" company's success. Someone on another forum made a comparison to Harley Davidson, which may be about right.

    So with that in mind, I do wonder what plans a future investment group would have - they'd want to get the name, but not the debts and current setup/management. And I think they'd want potential for serious profits, to be blunt, and I wonder if the small scale, real high-end scenario is going to do that. I'm thinking they might look to do some, possibly a lot of the manufacture outside the US, and then some ploy such as "designed and finished in the USA" or whatever, to satisfy the minds of consumers - would that work? I don't know! I'm just idly speculating anyhow. :D
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 2,984Member
    edited March 15
    "most US made strats are made by Mexicans anyhow."

    As I said later on: location, location, location

    Built by someone living the American dream, with a healthy standard of living - repairing to a bar at an early hour after work to shoot the breeze with his mates in his denim shirt with rolled up sleeves...

    All Americans are migrants - I fully expect to see black Americans making Gibsons, an aboriginal American making an SG would be best of all !

    The small scale, real high-end scenario is the ONLY way to do this.

    I'm afraid it means fewer workers.

    The corporation already has the outsourced Epiphone brand to put its efforts into. Otherwise using the Gibson logo would be cheating by licensed fakery.

    Many firms have done this already. At cost in valuableness and (often) quality to the customer. The clue is always in the price.
  • MarkbluesMarkblues Posts: 96Member

    Megi - It's not what I think about the USA/China guitar, it's what the market thinks and you can guarantee it will put a premium on one made in the USA.

    Good point. It’s like looking down on Mexican strats. As a friend of mine pointed out, most US made strats are made by Mexicans anyhow. And as we all know, tone is in the fingers not the guitar etc etc.
    I suppose if you’re buying a high end instrument, heritage could be an issue, but if you’re it to play, who cares. Play the thing to the ground!

    I like this comment:) Indeed just play the thing
  • Kevin PeatKevin Peat Posts: 2,984Member
    edited April 6
    Sure Mark.

    Therefore there need be no manufacture of guitars in the West at all. Heritage is the one and ONLY reason to do it in America otherwise the figures and rationale do not stack up.

    Let's not call them Gibson though. Call them Epiphone. A perfectly respectable name.

    I'm all for keeping black Americans in work. Ditto workers here in the UK especially when the government subsidy - in the form of welfare - needed to outsource manufacture is never considered, never mind the loss of self esteem of the nation.
  • Screaming DaveScreaming Dave Posts: 774Member
    Maybe the Heritage Guitar Company will finally get the Gibson name and it'll all go back to Kalamazoo where it started?

    https://heritageguitars.com/#the-story

    It always looks to me like the big brands start to have difficulties simply because they are big brands and demand big management teams with big salaries. Perhaps it's just that you'll never get rich making great guitars: you have to do it for the love of creating something wonderful that helps other people create their kind of wonderful.
  • nicholaspaulnicholaspaul Posts: 799Member

    Sure Mark.

    Therefore there need be no manufacture of guitars in the West at all. Heritage is the one and ONLY reason to do it in America otherwise the figures and rationale do not stack up.

    Rickenbacker!
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