NGD - Fender Tele. Not too impressed so far....

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ParkerParker Frets: 566
Took advantage of the deals on Hickies website posted here. Looks stunning. The bridge pins seem pretty much fully extended and there is chocking up past the 12th fret. I've tried tweaking but can't get a decent action without choking. Whilst changing the strings, I popped the neck off carefully and there is a shim in there....is that normal from the factory???
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  • HAL9000HAL9000 Frets: 2513
    edited January 7
    If you can't get a decent action with the bridge fully adjusted then I'd suspect the truss rod could be in need of a tweak.

    My understanding is that it is unusual, but not unheard of, for a Tele to be shimmed.
    Do Zen blues fans imagine the sound of one hand Clapton?
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  • WezVWezV Frets: 5168
    its not unusual for it to be shimmed, and most are better for it.  but if the saddles are at the maximum height take it out and try without.

    shims are not evil, but they are also not the full set-up picture so don't forget about all the other variables
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  • Lots of guitar factories shim their necks yes, there's not really a definitive answer for yes & no. Some need it others don't.
    Remove the shim and the saddles will drop down, then try flattening off the rod and that may cure your choking issues, unless there's a few dodgy frets.
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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    Cheers guys. I'll try that tomorrow and let you know w how it goes.
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  • MattFGBIMattFGBI Frets: 1307
    What's the serial number? 
    This is not an official response. 

    ukqueries@fender.com 


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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    MattFGBI said:
    What's the serial number? 
    MX11208099
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  • RichardjRichardj Frets: 1486
    Presumably that's a 2011 guitar from the serial no. Where has it been for the last five and a bit years?
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  • AdamskiAdamski Frets: 347
    edited January 7
    Just wanna say that I grabbed one from the Hickies deal - a MIM standard. I didn't need it to be too amazing as I need it for a usually non guitar related work thing so it was supposed to be my "don't care if it gets too beat up" guitar......gotta say I am massively impressed with it, plays and sounds great. 

    Mine seems to be a 2013 judging by the serial number. It was so cheap I don't care too much but if I'd have bought this at the £500 new price I'd be pissed it wasn't a 2016. 


    I guess it's not unusual for small stores to have stock for a number of years
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  • WezVWezV Frets: 5168
    Fender don't really do the model year thing Gibson seem intent on creating
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21468
    I honestly don't remember any standard Tele I've ever set up which needed a shim, although admittedly I do think they're better with a straight neck and a higher action usually. I would definitely take it out and see where you are with the saddle heights.
    "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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  • MattFGBIMattFGBI Frets: 1307
    Parker said:
    MattFGBI said:
    What's the serial number? 
    MX11208099
    OK, 2011. So it might have been on the wall a while. Still covered by the warranty so if you can't get it sorted send it back and we can pick it up and take a look. 


    This is not an official response. 

    ukqueries@fender.com 


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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    Thanks matey. I'll take the shim out and see.
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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    Shin removed and have got it set up perfectly after some tweaks with the bridge and trussrod. Taking to band practise tonight so fingers crossed it ticks all the boxes! 

    Thanks in particular to Matt at Fender for offering assistance.
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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    I should add that I'm a little mortified that Hickies hadn't checked it before dispatch - even the largest of box shifters usually check the guitar before it leaves the store. If I was a kid, it would have seemed a complete lemon and cost quite a bit to put right. No gigbag or hang tags either. Don't mind too much, but a more accurate description should really have been provided rather than just 'Sale'. 
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  • OctafishOctafish Frets: 170
    Glad to hear you got it sorted. Bit worrying that Fender or Hickies thought they'd set the guitar up correctly by sticking in an unnecessary shim which actually made the guitar worse :s
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  • JezWyndJezWynd Frets: 947
    Seems v unlikely that Fender would unnecessarily install a shim. A more likely scenario is a previous buyer tried to fix a perceived fault and installed it themselves, couldn't fix the problem and so returned it.
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  • richardhomerrichardhomer Frets: 12247
    Parker said:
    Shin removed and have got it set up perfectly after some tweaks with the bridge and trussrod. Taking to band practise tonight so fingers crossed it ticks all the boxes! 

    Thanks in particular to Matt at Fender for offering assistance.
    Matt's exceptionally helpful - he's a credit to Fender.
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  • SyncSync Frets: 110
    Parker said:
    I should add that I'm a little mortified that Hickies hadn't checked it before dispatch - even the largest of box shifters usually check the guitar before it leaves the store. If I was a kid, it would have seemed a complete lemon and cost quite a bit to put right. No gigbag or hang tags either. Don't mind too much, but a more accurate description should really have been provided rather than just 'Sale'. 
    So it was used, 6 years old and without the accessories? Weren't these sold as new but in the sale?

    Doesn't sound like a great deal, I would return it or at least get something back. How much was it?
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  • AdamskiAdamski Frets: 347
    FYI mine came with hang tags. 
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  • xAlnicoxAlnico Frets: 2815
    Parker said:
    Shin removed and have got it set up perfectly after some tweaks with the bridge and trussrod. Taking to band practise tonight so fingers crossed it ticks all the boxes! 

    Thanks in particular to Matt at Fender for offering assistance.
    Matt's exceptionally helpful - he's a credit to Fender.
    This.

    For what it's worth i've bought more new Fenders over the years than used ones and i've never had one with a shim installed. The neck angle and overall construction of the guitar has always been great.

    I've never asked Matt for help but it's better than good knowing i can ask someone directly like that.
    'Alnico-Fu' 
    Trading feedback
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  • ICBMICBM Frets: 21468
    Some do need a shim - it depends largely on the bridge. Anything with a Jaguar/Jazzmaster/Mustang-type bridge (including a Bigsby Tele) will, and some Strats do if you want the bridge floating. A standard Tele shouldn't though - or not unless something odd is going on like the body has been refinished too thickly and the bridge is then too high.

    I don't believe shims are bad or ruin the tone as so many people seem to think, either - and the material makes no difference either, card or fibreboard is fine - just that they usually aren't necessary.
    "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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  • goatgoat Frets: 81
    Yikes. Hadn’t seen this thread and ordered a Tele from Hickies yesterday. Now consumed with , hopefully irrational, visions of a guitar that’s been knocking around the store room for 6 years and purchased and returned as a lemon several times.
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  • stickyfiddlestickyfiddle Frets: 6111
    I have a small shim in my Strat to get the saddle high enough that the grub screws don't shred my hand. And I have a big one in my JM to get the bridge nice and high. 

    It's not a big deal though, as said, not always necessary. 
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  • BridgehouseBridgehouse Frets: 3444
    I dunno what you're worried about re:shims. Back in the seventies Fender used to use a door stop to shim some of their necks...


    ;)
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  • Jack_Jack_ Frets: 841
    I have a small shim in my Strat to get the saddle high enough that the grub screws don't shred my hand. And I have a big one in my JM to get the bridge nice and high. 

    It's not a big deal though, as said, not always necessary. 
    I do this too if required, I can't live with low saddles and sharp screws.
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  • ParkerParker Frets: 566
    I personally don't have an issue with a shim - It was just not needed and begs the question why / who thought it did need one and how did a bonafide Fender Tele (albeit a well priced one) get sent out with an action higher than a '90's Encore that made it unplayable! I haven't made a fuss with Hickies as I have properly set it up myself, and I recognise that I would struggle to match the guitar price-wise. Played it last night - all night. Sounds and plays like a beast now, so all's well...  
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  • MattBansheeMattBanshee Frets: 136
    goat said:
    Yikes. Hadn’t seen this thread and ordered a Tele from Hickies yesterday. Now consumed with , hopefully irrational, visions of a guitar that’s been knocking around the store room for 6 years and purchased and returned as a lemon several times.
    As someone who has visited their store several times; they always had plenty of guitars hanging up on a well-maintained display, but I can only imagine that since a huge Dawsons opened up just down the road (complete with private, free car park), most of the guitar browsers went to Dawsons and Hickies continued to trade mostly in orchestral instruments.
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  • SteveRobinsonSteveRobinson Frets: 833
    edited January 11
    Jack_ said:
    I do this too if required, I can't live with low saddles and sharp screws.
    In that case, just fit shorter screws
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  • I have had a lot of experience with Tele's having owned 30plus, also having worked on countless others. Some have definitely needed shims, some have not. 
    Quite often the 3 long screws intonating saddles are so long they can stick up between strings, with shim removed the angle can be reduced but still keep same action. But it depends on saddle screws for height adjustment and the original angle of neck plus also whether body has been refinished, type of bridge. 
    Its rarer on new guitars but certainly not unheard of. 
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  • Strat54Strat54 Frets: 175
    There were quite a few Custom Shop Fender's that left the factory with shims too....so fear not.
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