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In a statement online Saturday, Meng Ru Kuok, chief executive officer of Heritage marketing partner BandLab Technologies, said, "Our goal was and continues to be to return Heritage to a place of stability and sustainability. "Though this is a tough statement to stomach and seems hypocritical when former members of the team now have complete instability in their personal lives, there are still a lot of our treasured craftsmen and colleagues who continue to work at the factory. Instability and unsustainable business practice would ultimately over time result in everybody losing their jobs." . . .


BandLab Technologies - Isn't that the group that recently acquired "Cakewalk": CEO of BandLab Technologies, Meng Ru Kuok said, “We are very excited to be bringing Cakewalk Inc’s products into the BandLab Technologies stable. Cakewalk has been an industry leader in professional music software, delivering cutting edge technology that has empowered producers and artists alike around the world for more than 30 years. We have immense respect for Cakewalk’s legacy and the incredible community of people who love the brand and rely on its products in both their personal and professional lives.

Heritage announced in September 2017 that it is partnering with BandLab Technologies, a Singapore-based music retailing and distribution company, to push Heritage sales worldwide.

Look like Meng Ru is making some changes, some good, some not so good. I wonder what Trump thinks about a company from Singapore coming into the US and firing american workers?
 
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Heliski said he and two of the other workers authored a statement about the situation, and the statement was reviewed by 11 of the workers who left the company on Friday.

In part, it states:

"This building is a testament to true, hand-built craftsmanship. Some of the most valuable guitars in the world have come from this building. Heritage and the men that started it believed in continuing that hand-craftsmanship tradition. Were those guitars flawless? No, because they were made by human hearts and hands. Are any of us perfect? No. Changes in production were implemented by management that resulted in less than Heritage quality. Their unwillingness to listen or understand the high-quality standards resulted in the destruction of over 300 guitars.

"Our years of experience have fallen on deaf ears and now the employees are being scapegoated as to the reason for the drop in quality. None of us here are wealthy, or do it for the money. We did it for the love of the guitars. In fact, most of us worked for slightly over minimum wage with no medical benefits.

"During the 100th Anniversary Celebration they (the owners) expressed that they embraced those traditions. Meanwhile they are bringing in CNC and Plek machines which do not represent what the building and company stand for -- all the while, accusing us of being resistant to change. We understand that corporations have to meet their bottom line and that their eye for quality may need to be 100 percent, which is not attainable through hand-craftsmanship."
 

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Sadly, in the next decade, I think this will be rampant. The guitar business is not a growth business. In time, I think every major brand name will fit into that title block.


Most of the product built in the last 70 years or so is still out there. There aren't consumables. They don't deteriorate or fall out of favor.

And it is one of those weird products that we, as consumers, like the old stuff at least as much as the new stuff. So upgrading isn't that big a deal, buying next year's model isn't that appealing. The value of used gear doesn't fall away (in many cases, it increases). Think about how many guitars the manufacturers have pumped out in the last decade after decade after decade. And then think about how few of those get 'written off' and remove from the market place. Townsend did his part, but most other pro's didn't follow suit.

Add to that the fact that guitar music isn't in vogue. And may never be in vogue like it was. Kids today aren't dreaming of being Jimmy or Jimi, they want to be Justin or Justin.

So who is buying all those guitars? Primarily, us baby boomers that finally have the expendable coin to fill out our wish list. I was happy with two electrics and an acoustic for a couple decades, while I looked after all the other things a 30-something does. And now I have all the guitars I want or need. I'm done. And I'm not the only one.

I don't think the future looks bright. I've already sold all my shades.
 

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In a statement online Saturday, Meng Ru Kuok, chief executive officer of Heritage marketing partner BandLab Technologies, said, "Our goal was and continues to be to return Heritage to a place of stability and sustainability. "Though this is a tough statement to stomach and seems hypocritical when former members of the team now have complete instability in their personal lives, there are still a lot of our treasured craftsmen and colleagues who continue to work at the factory. Instability and unsustainable business practice would ultimately over time result in everybody losing their jobs." . . .


BandLab Technologies - Isn't that the group that recently acquired "Cakewalk": CEO of BandLab Technologies, Meng Ru Kuok said, “We are very excited to be bringing Cakewalk Inc’s products into the BandLab Technologies stable. Cakewalk has been an industry leader in professional music software, delivering cutting edge technology that has empowered producers and artists alike around the world for more than 30 years. We have immense respect for Cakewalk’s legacy and the incredible community of people who love the brand and rely on its products in both their personal and professional lives.

Heritage announced in September 2017 that it is partnering with BandLab Technologies, a Singapore-based music retailing and distribution company, to push Heritage sales worldwide.

Look like Meng Ru is making some changes, some good, some not so good. I wonder what Trump thinks about a company from Singapore coming into the US and firing american workers?
Who cares what he thinks. This is Canada.
 

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Most of the product built in the last 70 years or so is still out there. There aren't consumables. They don't deteriorate or fall out of favor.

And it is one of those weird products that we, as consumers, like the old stuff at least as much as the new stuff. So upgrading isn't that big a deal, buying next year's model isn't that appealing. The value of used gear doesn't fall away (in many cases, it increases). Think about how many guitars the manufacturers have pumped out in the last decade after decade after decade. And then think about how few of those get 'written off' and remove from the market place. Townsend did his part, but most other pro's didn't follow suit.
And corporations have figured this out, hence the rise of basically disposable, planned obsolescence oriented products. Companies like Apple can't survive if they can't keep selling you a new phone every year.
 

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And corporations have figured this out, hence the rise of basically disposable, planned obsolescence oriented products. Companies like Apple can't survive if they can't keep selling you a new phone every year.
Absolutely. My first good mountain bike, a Ritchey, had great components. Then, in the goal of getting lighter, bike companies started downsizing their drivetrain and rims, etc. Those first components lasted 5 years, and the replacements maybe a year or two. All to save 8 oz. The bike companies figured it out - and sold it as a plus and not a minus. LOL

But that's where guitars are different. We don't think this year's LP is better than a '59. In fact, quite the opposite. No guitar company is convincing us that we need to upgrade to newer stuff. In fact, they are trying to convince they still make stuff like they used to. Case in point - the company in the title block.
 

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Hang on to your vintage (and soon-to-be vintage) instruments. I agree that the market is shrinking with the boomers, but the value of good vintage gear will always rise. I think. Lot of old stuff out there...
 

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I had the pleasure and honour of visiting the Parsons Street facility in 1982, after Gibson had moved to Nashville but still retained the Kalamazoo facility and staff to handle hand-carved instruments and repair work on heritage instruments. I think it may have been Marv Lamb who gave me a tour of the place. The creaky worn floorboards were special, imbued with the scent of all those shavings and sawdust from all those magical instruments.

I have no idea what sort of business chops those folks had/have, but they were craftsmen who stayed behind, because they loved the work and the town, and probably loved working with each other. Of course, it is 36 years later now, and I imagine many are either retired or dead. So it is now a business, rather than simply a bunch of co-workers who stuck together. How much business accumen the original bunch brought to the brand, I have no idea. I only know they were the hands not the management. And as much as CNC allows for high consistency in larger-scale production, there is a certain pleasure in hand-carving that was likely one of the reasons why the original bunch created Heritage, as opposed to jumping ship for another job when Gibson left town.
 

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Hang on to your vintage (and soon-to-be vintage) instruments. I agree that the market is shrinking with the boomers, but the value of good vintage gear will always rise. I think. Lot of old stuff out there...
I don’t think vintage instruments will appreciate much in the future, except for maybe true collectors pieces; I doubt player grade instruments will increase.

If there’s less interest in guitar oriented music in the future and a stagnant marketplace (it seems that way now), that means there will be less interest in guitars, regardless of their vintage or prestige.

I believe niche groups will always be around, similar to our forum here. Those groups will always be buying, selling and trading, but the overall feeling I have for the future of the guitar building/selling market is a bleak one indeed.

I think we’ll start seeing more businesses like Kiesel for another while though; reasonable wait times, oriented towards modern players, fair amount of customization, smaller facility with less overhead and an online business model that puts all of their media in the hands of the future generations that want to be the next big thing. I’ve never owned a Kiesel, but I’ve been following them closely and I think they’re making some good choices.

Of course this is all speculation, so ymmv, IMO, my 2 cents, afaik and take it with a grain of salt, please.
 

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i know alot of you will disagree with me, but i couldn't care less about hand crafted. i want machined precision. i want that perfection the guy in the article says a human can't duplicate. because for one thing, he's wrong. humans CAN be that accurate and repeatable, just not as fast. i worked for years at a company where my main job was fabricating what our cnc plasma table could/would not. i call b.s. on any so-called "craftsmen " who want you to accept an item that has flaws, solely on the basis that those imperfections somehow increase their value in some intangible, unexplainable way.
 

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i know alot of you will disagree with me, but i couldn't care less about hand crafted. i want machined precision. i want that perfection the guy in the article says a human can't duplicate. because for one thing, he's wrong. humans CAN be that accurate and repeatable, just not as fast. i worked for years at a company where my main job was fabricating what our cnc plasma table could/would not. i call b.s. on any so-called "craftsmen " who want you to accept an item that has flaws, solely on the basis that those imperfections somehow increase their value in some intangible, unexplainable way.
I'll take it one step further and say I'd prefer machined precision parts put together by a craftsman. I've had the warmoth stuff, and when it was put together by the right person, it was excellent. Danocaster's assembly work is second to none. I think that's why he does so well - machine precision and his tweaking the feel to perfection.
 

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I'll take it one step further and say I'd prefer machined precision parts put together by a craftsman. I've had the warmoth stuff, and when it was put together by the right person, it was excellent. Danocaster's assembly work is second to none. I think that's why he does so well - machine precision and his tweaking the feel to perfection.
Dang good point.

Glenn at Fury was aware that he was competing in a CNC world, and was quite scornful of "hand-made magic mojo". He boasted about his inventions and his production process, which made his one-man operation capable of 200 guitars per year with everything made by him except tuning pegs. (The pots were a custom order from CTS, I believe, and the knobs also subbed out.)

But that is why his $1500 guitar was better than a $2000 Fender or a $3000 Gibson -- a combination of efficient, accurate machining and skilled assembly. With personal service to back it up.

I think this is the current model for the best manufacturers today. Minus the personal service.

However, like Ronbeast said, the collector's pieces will always have that "eye-of-the-beholder" thing going on. Question now is: what is collectible? There's a lot of old stuff out there for the next generation if they are still interested.
 

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Heritage had been for sale for years, and no American source was interested in buying...

wax poetic all you want, but otherwise Heritage would have ceased to exist, IMO

I know people who were turned off the brand because of QC issues. Compared to PRS, for example

I believe PRS uses CNC as well? I don't hear ppl complaining about their quality
 

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I don't hear ppl complaining about their quality
to my memory, i cant remember ever hearing/reading complaints about anything prs. one of these days i'll own one of those too.

that said, back in early 2014, before i bought my LP i tried out a heritage. it was the absolute, no hesitation, nicest playing guitar i have ever held in my hands, and the price was fair.
the ONLY reason i didn't immediately buy it and run from the store was the weight. it was 12 lbs at least, i am sure of it. you could anchor the queen mary with it. heavy to the point where it was actually uncomfortable sitting on my leg after about 20 min or so. for a younger or bigger player than i, it may have been a great guitar. i wanted something much lighter, so i bought my LP with modern weight relief. i have been very satisfied with that guitar ever since. i'd have to be in real bad trouble in order to ever sell it.
 

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to my memory, i cant remember ever hearing/reading complaints about anything prs. one of these days i'll own one of those too.

that said, back in early 2014, before i bought my LP i tried out a heritage. it was the absolute, no hesitation, nicest playing guitar i have ever held in my hands, and the price was fair.
the ONLY reason i didn't immediately buy it and run from the store was the weight. it was 12 lbs at least, i am sure of it. you could anchor the queen mary with it. heavy to the point where it was actually uncomfortable sitting on my leg after about 20 min or so. for a younger or bigger player than i, it may have been a great guitar. i wanted something much lighter, so i bought my LP with modern weight relief. i have been very satisfied with that guitar ever since. i'd have to be in real bad trouble in order to ever sell it.
I'm thinking about getting a Mira.
 

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"There's a lot of old stuff out there for the next generation if they are still interested."

Its a tough sell for the younger generation, competing with amazing graphics as in video games versus hours of repetitive practice (in the beginning) the immediate gratification factor will separate the potential players. I still believe that the guitar is such a special instrument, it will prevail.
 
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