Lower saddle and fit strap pin - a job for a luthier?

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I've got a sub £1000 Gibson acoustic that I want to add a strap pin and lower the action a bit. Would that be a job for a luthier or something I'd take to the grunt at my local shop like I would for an electric setup?
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 33359
    Depends how good the grunt is... some are fine. Some 'luthiers' aren't.

    Two important questions:

    Does it have an undersaddle pickup? If so lowering the action is usually a more demanding job than if not, assuming it's the saddle that needs to come down as well as the nut and/or relief.

    Do you know where you want the strap button fitted? There are three common positions (two on many guitars, but a Gibson will take the third) - on the back of the heel; on the heel pointing directly up the neck (not possible on guitars with a pointed heel); or on the underside (treble side) of the heel. Be careful that whoever fits it doesn't just whack it on the back of the heel, if that's not where you want it - a 'luthier' did that for someone here. It's not a good place usually.

    NB, I'm a guitar repairer with over thirty years' experience but I would never call myself a luthier, because in my opinion that's someone who *builds* guitars, and I don't. But I can certainly fit a strap button and lower the action correctly.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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  • ICBM said:
    Does it have an undersaddle pickup? If so lowering the action is usually a more demanding job than if not, assuming it's the saddle that needs to come down as well as the nut and/or relief.

    It does have an undersaddle pickup. Is that more demanding? I thought you still just pulled out the saddle and shaved it down. Or does it need to be shaped in some way?
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  • AliGorieAliGorie Frets: 304
    ICBM said:
    Does it have an undersaddle pickup? If so lowering the action is usually a more demanding job than if not, assuming it's the saddle that needs to come down as well as the nut and/or relief.

    It does have an undersaddle pickup. Is that more demanding? I thought you still just pulled out the saddle and shaved it down. Or does it need to be shaped in some way?
    saddle base HAS to be dead flat to make full contact with the US element otherwise ya lose out on vibration transfer  - resulting in  un balanced sound hess.
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 33359
    hessodreamy said:

    It does have an undersaddle pickup. Is that more demanding? I thought you still just pulled out the saddle and shaved it down. Or does it need to be shaped in some way?
    Yes, as AliGorie said - more demanding because the bottom of the saddle must be dead flat and square, or you will get uneven string response.

    The best way to do that is with a sanding board - a flat board with sandpaper glued to it that you move the saddle on, not the other way round. You can do the bulk of the cutting first with a saw or file, depending on how much needs to come off.
    "Take these three items, some WD-40, a vise grip, and a roll of duct tape. Any man worth his salt can fix almost any problem with this stuff alone."
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