Outcasts *NOT* & We Love Gardner

Chris, Gordon, Kim:

>Electronic mail is a great technological advance, but there is still a
>LONG way to go when it comes to expressing Tone and Feeling through

Especially when *I* blow right past the original posts.  Sorry for stirring
it up on this one.  We all probably agree more than we disagree on the
'take harp seriously' but not 'take the harper seriously' issue. 

And I do want to see that Estrin 'smoke' his harp some day   8).  

And not that this really matters to the discussion, but the first 'home
brew' music I ever heard (I think I was 3) was my father playing 'You Are
My Sunshine' on his concertina. Now I didn't take that too seriously at the
time, but when he told me he sold it just 6 months ago, you could say I was
in a seriously upset mood  8( 


>Are you in touch with Dick Gardner? I'm looking for a current
>address and phone number for a resources guide that Kim Field and
>I are assembling for the SPAH convention.

He's got an ad on p.118 of Kevin's Harps Sp/Su '94 catalog and he will send
you a repair booklet with coupons for $$$-off on repair --  all for only $5
which inludes postage -- now that's a bargain!!!! 

<From the 'cat with the "Good Harpkeeping Seal" 

Dick Gardner                                    
7024 Jocelyn Avenue South
Cottage Grove, MN  55016-3640
(612) 458-1193  10 am - 5 pm CST

>By the way, since when does a percentage of the value of an
>instrument have anything to do with the value of highly skilled
>human labor?
>By this I'm referring to your discussion on the list recently
>about whether to play Dick an extra $30 to set up a new CX-12 for
>you. Considering the precision work and the knowledge going into
>it, I'd say that's a hell of a bargain.
>True, you could buy the vanilla harp from Kevin, but it won't
>play as well or sound as good.
>This kind of work is actually best done AFTER the factory, not in
>it, despite the grumbling of harmonica players, for two reasons.
>The first is quality. In a factory, the workers are in too much of a
>hurry, being paid for quantity, not quality, and would likely
>make a mess of such delicate adjustments.
>The second is price. Everthing done at the factory gets included
>in the cost of goods sold, and is marked up several times as it
>changes hands. By purchasing these improvements at the END of the
>distribution chain, you're paying only for the labor, and giving
>the money to the guy who most deserves it.

You're spot on in your rhetorical question.  Dick's a prince of a guy and
would never knowingly overcharge for anything. In fact, he gives a lot of
it away (free advice, 'come into my shop anytime and let me show you',
etc.), and I believe I may have insulted him by asking that question in
that way, so I publicly apologize here for any indication or implication of
that being a personal attack.  By the way -- have you taken your CD player
or car stereo in lately for repair? $50-$70 just to 'look at it' -- plus

My issue was to be more along the lines of what do people do themselves vs.
what did they think should be done by professionals. The percentage thing
was a simplistic way to make such a decision. Actually, I was just shaking
the trees to see what came out (I've been known to do that now and again,
so if this offends of bores some of you, I am dreadfully sorry).  

Although there are several industries that set up value-added services for
disovered deficiencies in brand new products, they usually are not
QC/rework based, but integrate new features or additional function.  Thus,
I'm not convinced that I personally should buy a 'sooped up' harp presently
because: (1) there is something to be learned and enjoyed by poking around
yourself, (2) it doesn't seem to always be needed, (3) it is 'doable' or
'learnable' (4) I have some experience setting up new guitar necks,
rewiring/hot-rodding guitar electronics, etc, and (5) the actual price of
doing it yourself could actually be more than having a pro like Dick do it
if the job is big enough and if you factor in the value of your time, etc.
-- but that's secondary (for me now) to the previous items. BTW, Dick's
totally OK with this kind of thing, and as I said before, he has all the
work he can handle.

Also, the cost of a factory doing it could be cheaper if the design focused
on improving the right areas, rather than trying to fix them during final
QC or re-work, as you implied in your price discussion.  

However, many others, esp. the pros who can't be bothered with the repair
any more, may just delegate this out and be done with it (how many who used
to change your own oil and work on your automobile don't anymore..).  

Cool. All the guitar gods have personal techs on the road with them for the
same reason.

It's all personal choices based on your means and where you want to spend
your time (like playing or fixing -- now there's an idea! :). 

Always enjoy the opinions and the debates in this group. Thanks again.

Harvey A. Andruss, III                  email: haandruss@xxxxxxx

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