GuitarWorkz shameless monthly competition plug and self promotion

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GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
edited July 2015 in Made in the UK
As some of you may know I build and repair guitars for a living, what you might not know is that my company also runs monthly competitions where we give the winners guitar related prizes every month, though the competitions may be increased to bimonthly depending on their popularity, right now we have been running these competitions on a local level, however starting from this August we want to try opening them up to everybody who lives in the United Kingdom.

There is no purchase or cost required to take part in the competitions, entry is completely free to every U.K resident, in fact we don't even have anything for sale on our website or anything advertised for sale either, winners will be decided by the people who take part in the competitions themselves, not by me, nor any of my staff, nor a panel of anonymous judges, but via a poll open to everybody who wants to take part in the competition, we can't think of a fairer way to pick a winner, if you can please feel free to suggest it.

The inaugural  nationwide competition will start from the 1st of August 2015, and run until midnight the 31st of August 2015, a poll will then be put up on the 1st of September with a list of everybody who entered the competition for people to vote on who wins that months competition, the poll will be open for fourteen calender days, (14 days) so until September 14th 2015, and the winner will be announced the following day, the 15th of September, we will then post the winner their prize, please note that due to the type of prizes we are handing out it may take as much as a week for the winner to receive their prize, however for this first competition we actually have the prize ready to ship out to the winner, sometimes the prizes will be shipped to the winners by us other times directly from the manufacturer or the distributor.

And now for some details on the competition that haven't even been posted on our own website yet regarding the first competition.
Custom guitars & guitar competitions
http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
    edited July 2015
    A riff is a short rhythmic phrase, especially one that is repeated in improvisation.  Something that all great riffs have in common, is that they tend to not only be very simple to play, look at Smoke On The Water by Deep Purple, or All Right Now by Free, Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana, Paranoid by Black Sabbath, Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne, or Day Tripper by The Beatles, to name but a few, but that they tend to also be fun to play and relatively short, usually between 2 to 6 bars, George Martin apparently told The Beatles that great riffs where not longer than thirteen notes (13) in length. 

    The Fender Telecaster was the world's first commercially available solid body single cut away electric guitar, its simple yet effective design and revolutionary sound broke ground and set trends in electric guitar manufacturing and popular music, it's origins can be traced back to March 1950 when the Esquire models where first sold.  It has been the guitar of choice for some of the worlds greatest guitarists and some of the most iconic guitar riffs in history where played on and written for The telecaster.


    Seeing how I introduced myself to this community with my take on a Telecaster, what better than a competition and prize centered on and around Telecasters for our first national level competition, so here it is.

    For the first competition we are giving the winner a brand new set of IronGEAR Steel Foundry Overwound Pickups for the Telecaster, both bridge and neck position, as seen here: http://www.irongear.co.uk/irongear_pickups_014.htm  , the IronGEAR Telecaster wiring harness for the pickups as seen here: http://www.axetec.co.uk/guitar_parts_uk_109.htm the wiring harness we are giving the winner will have 500k pots, 0.047uF capacitor, 3 way enclosed switch, and a black switch tip, TLKIT01: TELE ORANGE DROP WIRING KIT (Enclosed Switch), If requested it may be possible to change the wiring harness to 250k pots, 0.022uF capacitor, 3 way enclosed switch, and a black switch tip, or some variation of a combination of the two, but this may delay the winner receiving their prize by quite a bit, so I would advise against it, plus a rather cool and fetching IronGEAR T-Shirt as seen here: http://www.axetec.co.uk/guitar_parts_uk_099.htm  (the top T-Shirt on the page IronGear PICKUPS T-SHIRT 2015) in size XL, (apparently this T-Shirt will not only increase your chances of getting laid but also add a few inches to your manhood*).  Prizes are not exchangeable for a cash equivalent, under any circumstances. 

    So now you're probably asking yourself what you have to do in order to win all of these cool IronGEAR products, well that's simple, all you have to do is write a rock'n'roll riff in standard tuning that takes advantage of the Telecasters characteristics and qualities, the riff is to be no shorter than two (2) bars, and no longer than six (6) bars. It can be in any timing you want, but it has to be rock'n'roll.  Your entries are to be submitted in MP3 format at a bit rate of 128 kbit/s, and accompanied with your audio file of your riff you need to submit your riff  written out in guitar tablature as well, your tab should be detailed so that other people can read it and easily follow it to play your riff as it sounds on your submitted audio file, it should include timing, speed, switch position (which pickups you are using) what effects you are using.   Keep in mind you are not being judged on your recording quality, but on your riff, the bit rate of 128 kbit/s is more to do with keeping our website to a reasonable size and bandwidth practicalities.

    Now before people ask you will own the copyright to your material, and you will be given credit for it, you can submit as many entries as you like, we will keep your entries up on our website and made available for people to see, especially the wining entry, the entries that don't win we may only keep your tab up and remove your audio file, but you will be credited for it, the winning entry will be promoted more predominantly than the non winning entries by being placed in our 'Competition News' section of our website, mainly to encourage people to look at it, study it and see what makes a good riff.

    More details about how to enter the competition as well as where to submit your entries will be posted closer to the start of the competition - it would be great if an admin could contact me either here or via my email address, this is just me giving you guys more of a heads up than anyone else regarding our first competition, like I said this information isn't even up on our own website yet.

    Now if you have an idea for a competition, or an idea for a prize we should hand out, please suggest them, all that we ask is that prizes be made by U.K. owned companies made in the U.K, or made by U.K. owned companies overseas, obviously this isn't always possible, especially when it comes to effects peddles - we used BOSS pedals mainly when we had competitions in the past where the prize was an effects pedal.  Please be sensible with prize suggestions, though I would love to have the financial backing to give away Feline guitars and other boutique British guitars of that level and quality as prizes I don't unfortunately, I'm still saving up for one for myself.

    *This statement might not be true, and it may in fact have the opposite effect, or no effect at all.
    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
    Here are photos of the pickups that are up for grabs this month:

    image

    And here is the back of the box with the wiring instructions:

    image

    The picks in the first picture where a freebie some company that prints custom guitar picks sent us as a way to advertise their services, they only sent us five guitar picks with our logo on, but expect us to order them in batches of hundreds, so we haven't ordered any, just thought I'd include them in the picture for some reason.
    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • John_PJohn_P Frets: 1408
    Apologies if I'm being dim and missing it,  but it might be useful to include a link to your website and email if you want to promote it?
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  • Now if you have an idea for a competition, or an idea for a prize we should hand out, please suggest them, all that we ask is that prizes be made by U.K. owned companies made in the U.K, or made by U.K. owned companies overseas, obviously this isn't always possible, especially when it comes to effects peddles - we used BOSS pedals mainly when we had competitions in the past where the prize was an effects pedal.  Please be sensible with prize suggestions, though I would love to have the financial backing to give away Feline guitars and other boutique British guitars of that level and quality as prizes I don't unfortunately, I'm still saving up for one for myself.

    As a UK pickup manufacturer producing pickups in the UK and not simply badge engineering mass produced far eastern pickups, I feel that 'Made in the UK' is not really the place to be promoting products that are definitely not UK made! These companies don't generate any more than token revenue for the UK music industry, and generate minimum employment. Supporting 'British' is about helping to bolster both of those. We fight on an tilted playing field anyway ... promoting foreign made competition (which has the budget to promote itself) here is a slap in the face for all of us real UK makers.
    Professional pickup winder, horse-testpilot and recovering Chocolate Hobnob addict.
    Oil City Pickups  ... The Guitar Weasel blog

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  • EvilmagsEvilmags Frets: 5081

    @TheGuitarWeasel


    I´d not get too worried, Iron gear are what you stick in a guitar when your skint and don´t have many options. Oil City/ASL are what you put in a guitar when you want it to sound its absolute best. I don´t really view them as being competition, especially as a mass producer cannot provide close to the same levels of customer service and support.


    Mind you he can´t be looking to hard if you can´t find UK made pedals as I can get a lot of different companies on google doing just that. UK made pickups, likewise.


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  • @Evilmags
    Evilmags said:

    @TheGuitarWeasel


    I´d not get too worried, Iron gear are what you stick in a guitar when your skint and don´t have many options. Oil City/ASL are what you put in a guitar when you want it to sound its absolute best. I don´t really view them as being competition, especially as a mass producer cannot provide close to the same levels of customer service and support.


    Mind you he can´t be looking to hard if you can´t find UK made pedals as I can get a lot of different companies on google doing just that. UK made pickups, likewise.



    It's not a matter of not being able to find U.K. made pedals it's a matter of budget, we actually handed out a few that where made in the U.K. by U.K. pedal builders, if you read what I wrote in my post you will see I said mainly stuck to Boss, not all the time, but most of the time, you show me a U.K pedal builder with more than a hand full of pedals that are within our budget and does a wide variety, not just dirt and distortion, but tuners, phaser, chorus, delay, overdrive....., I think you get the picture here, and I will happily use them in our competitions, I'll even put my money where my mouth is and you can pm me for our budget for these competitions, so can see what we are working with.

    And believe it or not I have actually spoken to Ash Scot-Lockyer on the 08/07/2015 by email about getting pickups from him, he didn't know what is was about, but I inquired about buying them for somebody as a birthday present and if he would be happy to post them to that address instead of the address registered with my paypal account, he replied to me the same day, if you want I will put up screen shots of the email correspondence I had with him. 

    I have also spoken to at least one other member here about sourcing products for prizes for our competitions, he was actually thorough in asking why I would want to have the product sent to a different address, and even why we host these competitions and give away free gear.

    Now as to the IronGEAR pickups, if you don't like them, don't take part in the competitions.

     
    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 11829
    and if he would be happy to post them to that address instead of the address registered with my paypal account, 
     
    You're aware that that's a well known scam routine, right?
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  • TTony said:
    and if he would be happy to post them to that address instead of the address registered with my paypal account, 
     
    You're aware that that's a well known scam routine, right?

    That's why I asked if he would be willing to do that, I'll be honest and up front, for us there are two reasons for it.

    1. Postage costs, if they are sent to us, we have to pay postage twice, once for them to get to us, and a second time for them to get to who ever wins that months competition.

    2. Warranty some manufacturers would consider the pickups as being second hand if they posted them to us, and we forwarded them to someone else, if something went wrong with them even if it was to happen within a week of the purchase date they wouldn't honor the warranty as it is not with the 'original purchaser'

    And believe it or not a lot of people get stuff sent to other address than their registered paypal address, I buy my parents and siblings birthdays presents and what not and have them posted directly to their address and not mine, but I always check with the retailer first before I do it just in case it is something they are not happy to do - they are a few retailers who want you to pay in a different manner if you do this, simply don't do it, or even charge a premium for the service




    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • HeartfeltdawnHeartfeltdawn Frets: 9005
    edited August 2015

    That's why I asked if he would be willing to do that, I'll be honest and up front, for us there are two reasons for it.

    1. Postage costs, if they are sent to us, we have to pay postage twice, once for them to get to us, and a second time for them to get to who ever wins that months competition.

    So you're a new business who is so tight for cash that you don't want to pay for two lots of Special Delivery at the £8.50 range?  :))

    If you're so broke, how are you handing out freebies? 

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  • GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
    edited August 2015
    @Heartfeltdawn

    That's why I asked if he would be willing to do that, I'll be honest and up front, for us there are two reasons for it.

    1. Postage costs, if they are sent to us, we have to pay postage twice, once for them to get to us, and a second time for them to get to who ever wins that months competition.

    So you're a new business who is so tight for cash that you don't want to pay for two lots of Special Delivery at the £8.50 range?  :))

    If you're so broke, how are you handing out freebies? 


    Since everyone seems to be on a witch hunt I'll just copy and past here my reply to somebody I had a discussion with on here regarding sourcing prizes:

    ''As in why do we run the competitions? To encourage people to play their guitar, I'll be up front and honest with you as a company we make no money from these competitions, we actually run them at a substantial loss, we usually budget around £250.00 a month for a prize for each months competition, but seeing how the one we are running this August is the first one we will be doing that is open to everyone who lives in the U.K. we have cut that in half so that we can still run the our usual local competition side by side with the national competition, just to make sure things run smoothly, if Augusts national competition goes smoothly then the competition that we run that is only open to local Edinburgh residents will be closed, and from September onwards the competitions will be combined.

    But to answer your question, our motivation for running these competitions is to encourage people to play their guitars and hopefully give them some confidence in themselves when they submit their entries and if they win.  We consider it a worthwhile investment in the guitar playing community.  Theses sorts of competitions are very common in other countries, but for some reason not the U.K, and we as a company and a group of individuals who love the instrument would like to change that.

    I'm glad you like our website, you're more than welcome to advertise your products and company there, I hope you don't find our slogan offensive.  Our work shirts have that slogan printed in huge letters across the back of them.

    Another reason for asking if you would be willing to send directly to the winner is that it saves us from paying to have the item shipped twice, and like I said, we are more than happy to pay for the product at the start of the month when we announce that months competition, so the funds would have long cleared in your account before you have to post out the product.

    I hope that makes sense to you, we're not out to scam anybody, we just want to encourage people to play their guitars more and even add a social aspect to it
    .''

    Now this was my reply to another member on here, I'm not gonna say who, it was a private conversation, if that member wishes to confirm that this is indeed my reply and unedited that's up to them, I hope they understand that there is no pressure from me to do so, but there is all my cards on the table, our monthly budget for these competitions, the motivations behind why we are running them, and if you can read between the lines the reason for Augusts competition prize being what it is, if you need me to spell it out I will.

    And to save people clicking on that link this is what I wrote in that post on that Forum back on July 13, 2015 at 11:47 PM:

    ''In all honesty if I knew four months ago what I now know today, I would of bitten the bullet and paid a professional to set up my/our company website and facebook presence. 

     

    As of today we are two weeks behind schedule, have yet to start handing out guitar related freebies on a national level, we are still giving out freebies to the students of local teachers who think that their student deserves the freebie that month, we give out freebies as competition prizes, and I must say that some of the freebies we have given out so far on a monthly basis have been top notch and have had us purchasing sets for ourselves, though this may soon change to a bimonthly competitions in the future, and we may be adding more prizes too, for things like second and third place.

     

    I have also implemented a yet untested way for people who enter our monthly competitions to vote on who they think should win each months prize, that way nobody thinks that the decision of who wins each month is made by a panel of anonymous judges, or simply handed out to friends of ours.

     

    Some days I honestly feel like I have been forced into biting off more than I can chew, or understand, and I am drowning under the workload and pressure.

     

    I have even managed to set up an online shop tied into paypal and several other payment gateways - yet this is not active yet, and believe it or not after all of my effort to get it set up, we might not be using it.

     

    And don't get me started on facebook.''

    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
    edited August 2015

    One of the reasons I chose to build the website myself was to learn something about websites, not to save money, but to actually learn something, If you actually bother to look at our website we had decided a while ago that we wouldn't sell anything through it, though there is still a link to an online shop, that leads to a page that has this written on it,

    ''Under construction, we may get round to completing and implementing this page at some point in the future, or not, we haven't decided yet''


    So there it is everything out in the open, our monthly budget for these competitions, the fact we are behind schedule, 3 days and 12 hours now, sort of, July 1st was an impossible deadline that we had set ourselves, why we run these competitions, and why this months competition prize is what it is.

    And we are not a 'new' company, we have just never had a web presence, we have never found we needed one, the website was purely set up to run these competitions, and in some ways make them easier to run and keep track of, not to sell or advertise our wares, in fact the page set up to ''show off'' or work explicitly reads:

    ''Here you will find examples of our work from the past right up to what we are currently working on.  Please note that none of the guitars featured on this page are for sale, they are either guitars that people have commissioned off of us, or guitars we have built for ourselves purely for our own entertainments sake, this page is not meant to be seen as a page advertising specific guitars for sale, it is purely here for you to see, and hopefully enjoy the sort of stuff we enjoy doing, and get up to, not just at work, but sometimes during our free time as well.  Most of the guitars featured on this page will be from our own private collections, some will belong to people who commissioned their creation.'

     

    We will never have a 'standard' model of production guitars, so it's there is no point for us to have a website, we have have an agent who makes a % off every guitar we build and sell to get our products out there, we will never have a standard neck plate for the guitars that we make with bolt on necks, we do have a standard engraving that we use on our custom volume and tone knobs.


    If you don't want us on this forum, let me know and I'll leave.
    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • John_PJohn_P Frets: 1408
    I'd have thought the best way to promote your company would be examples of your work and testimonials from happy customers.  I can't quite pin down what you actually do.    

    Not sure why you would think anyone doesn't want you on the forum - join in discussions, contribute your knowledge and expertise - you sound like you enjoy helping people so it's all good and lets see some pictures and build threads on these guitars you've built :)
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  • GuitarWorkzGuitarWorkz Frets: 106
    edited August 2015
    John_P said:
    I'd have thought the best way to promote your company would be examples of your work and testimonials from happy customers.  I can't quite pin down what you actually do.    

    Not sure why you would think anyone doesn't want you on the forum - join in discussions, contribute your knowledge and expertise - you sound like you enjoy helping people so it's all good and lets see some pictures and build threads on these guitars you've built :)

    The website is not actually finished, what we do is build one off guitars, and repair guitars for a few shops that don't have their own technicians, they are generally the smaller independent shops, we don't repair guitars for the general public, as in you can't walk into our workshop and drop off your guitar to be repaired, we are hoping that in the next 6 - 12 months to stop doing this and to purely focus on guitar building, though we have been saying this for the past 5 years, it will eventually happen, it is getting closer, I think we only repair guitars for 3 or 4 shops now at the most. 

    We will probably never actually advertise guitars for sale, or to build guitars for people on our website, we have a 'sole agent' we have an agreement with, who effectively 'pimps' our work out for a % of every guitar we build because of him, well her, it's actually a female we have this agreement with.

    The reason as to why there are no examples of our work on the website, is three fold:

    1. We are in the process of getting permission from clients to put photos of the instruments we have built for them on our website.

    2. The ones we have been given permission to put up, we have still to organize getting photographed, and decide how we intend to present them on the website, whether or not to mention how much it cost for that instrument to be made, how long it took, the specs.....

    3.  I work full time, I'm building the website after I put in a full days work, some nights I gig, or have band rehearsal, in other words it is still a work in progress, we just thought it was more important to focus on getting the website ready for the competitions, rather than to show off our work, we figured people would be more interested in the chance of getting free stuff, than looking at photos of guitars that either belong to the people who built them, or the people who commissioned the building of guitars that you can't buy.

    Being raised in the States it is common out there for companies like mine, in fact for all music shops, especially the ones that have noticeboards that they allow customers to place 'looking for guitarist,singer,bass player' sort of adds and local gig adds up on to do what we do with competitions, as a way to encourage people to play their instruments, that's something I have always liked about the States.  When my company was opened, we figured it was one of the good things the Americans did right, especially during a time when music education in schools not just in America but over here has gone from being compulsory, to being optional, to being a extra option to be paid for at extra expense, to being non existent.

    As to a build thread, since the shitkicker - the calf skinned guitar, that's what we call it, was built, I've had an idea for one I'd love to build for myself, the current guitar we are building, the person who we are building it for has denied us permission to place photos of it online or for us to use on our web site, I can understand this and I respect his desire for privacy, it's a shame and I will admit I'm disappointed, it's something we have never done before and inspired by the lead guitarist from the 80's rock band Nitro, the band who had the hit with the song called 'Freight Train' most famous guitar, but my hands are tied when the owners of instruments say that they don't want photos of them online. 

    If and when I get the time to build my latest idea for myself I'll try and put up a build thread, or a least a video or photos of the process. 
    Custom guitars & guitar competitions
    http://www.guitarworkz.co.uk
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  • I certainly did look at your website :)


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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 11829
    3.  I work full time, I'm building the website after I put in a full days work, some nights I gig, or have band rehearsal, in other words it is still a work in progress, we just thought it was more important to focus on getting the website ready for the competitions, rather than to show off our work, we figured people would be more interested in the chance of getting free stuff, than looking at photos of guitars that either belong to the people who built them, or the people who commissioned the building of guitars that you can't buy.


    If I was in your position, I'd probably focus on getting all that stuff done and then start promoting it via forums like here, rather than taking time out here to promote something (however vague that "something" might be) that doesn't yet exist.

    To be completely frank, you're not doing your credibility on this forum any favours at the moment, and in any business, credibility is critical to success.


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  • Adam_MDAdam_MD Frets: 2493
    edited August 2015
    GuitarMonkey;729390" said:
    image
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  • darcymdarcym Frets: 789
    the whole concept of a business that doesn't exist running competitions seems just stupid
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  • TimmyOTimmyO Frets: 2600
    I think if a fledgling business wants to put a modest budget to marketing itself by running a competition, good luck to them. 

    As for whether the prizes are made in the UK surely that's not that relevant? The business being promoted being a UK venture - is that not the relevant bit?

    Promotion will only go so far - quality of product and service will be what makes it work or not.

    Oil City, Wudtone, R&F et al prove that, all fantastic on both fronts. 
    "Congratulations on being officially the most right anyone has ever been about anything, ever." -- Noisepolluter knows the score
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  • 4114Effects4114Effects Frets: 2593
    GuitarMonkey;729390" said:
    Strangely enough I also made that connection when reading the posts. I'm pretty sure it's not him, but the Internet is a strange place sometimes ...
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  • octatonicoctatonic Frets: 16243
    edited August 2015
    GuitarMonkey;729390" said:
    Strangely enough I also made that connection when reading the posts. I'm pretty sure it's not him, but the Internet is a strange place sometimes ...
    Of course it is him.
    Dalefty was last here late May.
    This guy joins July 22nd.

    Same rambling style, non-sequitur threads.
    He had no website when he joined and he gave a fake name in his introduction thread- close to his real name but with a different surname.
    The registrant of his website is called [redacted] and his address is in Galashiels, the same place as DaLefty.

    It is him.

    (I've removed his real name for the forum- it is easily searchable though.)
    I am the juice of four limes.
    Trading Feedback
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  • TTonyTTony Frets: 11829
    Time to close this thread I think.

    If @GuitarWorkz wants it re-opened, please PM me to let me know.
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This discussion has been closed.