Sierra Alpine SD35CE Acoustic Electric Guitar (Used, Bad Tuner)
In the beginning…..
Twelve years ago I was a newly-wed full time bar manager/tender who worked nights and weekends while my sweet drummer-boy husband toiled away at a manufacturing job during the day. Between us we had seven children and a love of music. When Louie (that would be my husband) said he wanted to add to his vintage Ludwig Vistalites we bought another set of Vistalites, scalped what he wanted and sold the leftovers on eBay. What started as an outlet for his passion for drums quickly became more than just a hobby….it became our very own pursuit of the American Dream.
We didn’t have any real plans of making retail our source of income but after some amazing sales we were hooked. We also didn’t have much in way of a business background. What we lacked in knowledge we made up for with perseverance. “Strong Work Ethic” could be our middle names. What we didn’t know we researched and applied to our business model. And we grew.
You’re probably asking “What’s this got to do with guitar parts?”
Our natural progression was to expand our business from drums (which are by nature not the easiest to package and ship cross country) to guitars. Our house has always been full of guitarists coming and going....if you are a musician you know the nature of the band scene….so we knew a thing or three about guitars. When the opportunity to sell guitars presented itself we lunged…and were even more hooked on the idea of being full time e-tailers.
And now for the hook…
Our guitars aren’t your average guitars. Of course we started by selling fully intact, fully functioning guitars. Lots of them. Thousands of them. And then we were offered the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to buy broken guitars wholesale. Now, that came out of left field and we thought this was a crazy offer…who would want to buy broken guitars? After much research and much soul searching we jumped even further than we ever thought we would and took our first shipment of broken guitars.
You may be thinking we got a few dozen guitars. Wrong. How about a few hundred? How about a semi-truck pulling up in front of our house with no lift gate and six 8’ pallets loaded with box after box after box of broken guitars? Thankfully I had teenage boys at home who helped me hump them up the driveway and into the garage. Needless to say, I didn’t park my car in the garage for weeks.
While Louie worked his day job I spent my time taking apart guitars. I’ve always loved tools and messing around with them so I was in heaven. I could power through a dozen guitars in no time. Necks came off, tuners came off, electronics were removed. I’d shred, photograph, sell and ship all day and then head to the bar by 4:00 for my night shift. Our broken guitars were in huge demand all over the world. We were shipping dozens of packages a day. And stretching ourselves thinner and thinner. Then it dawned on us: we were running a full time online guitar parts store and it was time for one of us to dedicate our focus to it and growing our business.
I was the first to drop out of the regular work force. The transition from working until 2:30 in the morning slinging booze and chatting up customers to being up early enough to handle emails and shipping wasn’t easy but I managed. As our business expanded it was time for Louie to join me full time in our endeavor and so he bid adieu to manufacturing, never to look back.
The Big Move…
After working where we lived and living where we worked we decided it was time to pull up roots and head to my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio. We’d outgrown our home in Pittsburgh…we’d even outgrown the four storage units we were renting...so we packed it up and headed northwest and here we are. We now work from a spacious building with room to move and breathe and think and grow. We hired a part-time guitar tech in 2012 to help lighten my load as I focused more on the office and managerial side of things.
The Nuts and Bolts…
What we do, literally, is buy broken guitars and part them out. We touch every single guitar that comes to us. Our guitar tech tests every guitar and every guitar part before we list it for sale. While we’ve grown over the last 12 years we’ve never let go of the personal touch. We treat people how we would like to be treated and take every opportunity to make your buying experience with us professional and pleasant.
The Challenges of Running a Mom and Pop Music Store in the Year 2014
You probably know what I’m going to say before I even say it: our biggest challenge is competing with the big box stores and China. Gone are the days of heading to the local music store to get what you need. Nowadays you can cruise up to the megamall and buy from the monster (no name needed) or you can jump on the internet and buy direct from China. In both cases you are going to get what you pay for: either bad service or bad product.
We get daily calls and emails from customers who start by complaining about the big boxes or China and then asking us for help. The difference between us and the big boxes? We care about our customers. The difference between us and China? Our parts are genuine to the guitars we remove them from. Period.
While we don’t carry vintage guitars or extremely high end guitar parts we do offer a solid inventory of quality name brand guitars and parts. Our inventory of models changes constantly but we do maintain pretty much the same variety of brands including Takamine, Epiphone, Fender, Ibanez, Alvarez, Schecter, Ovation, Steinberger, Kramer and Jackson. Along with parts from those brands we are AllParts and WD dealers and do carry new stock parts as well.
Most of our parts and hardware are in near-factory condition and we offer a 7 day 100% Satisfaction guarantee on them. If something isn’t perfect we’ll detail it in the specs. The guitars we sell are in need of repair. Plain and simple. If your passion is guitar repair you’ve come to the right place. We have something for luthiers of all skill levels from beginning repairs to the more difficult repairs.
Our guitars are in various stages of disrepair. They are all stamped Used on the back of the headstock and have new serial numbers over the old ones (requirement of the manufacturers). Fender logos are removed (another requirement)
We are a two person, one cat crew. (With a very camera shy guitar tech!) I’ve already told you a bit about me and Louie but I’ll give you a little more insight.
Louie was raised on a farm in PA by two amazing people. His work ethic is truly that of a farmer and his moral compass is very straight thanks to the good people who raised him. He started drumming at a young age and has been immersed in drums and the band scene since he was a teenager. Although he’s no longer playing in a band he can still be heard bashing around on his Vistalites. Louie is social by nature and will be happy to answer your questions if you call us. He’s also a Steelers fan. And a Harley rider. And did I mention a metal head?
I was raised in beautiful Cleveland, Ohio and am proud of it. I bleed orange and brown and I have to say our Sundays here are never boring (if you know football you know the Browns and Steelers have a storied rivalry). My family is one of those families who never give up…and never get tired. Give me a challenge and I’ll take it on. I’m the office/managerial end of our operation and handle the logistics of how our guitars and guitar parts are going to be processed for sale. I’m also the one manning the social media aspects so that is my voice you will hear in the blog and it’s also my face you’ll see in our YouTube videos.
Our final staff member is a delightfully aloof rescue cat name MeeMaw. We say she’s the boss with "cattitude". While she doesn’t really do much except sleep and eat she does brighten our days and we love her to death. She is possibly the most spoiled cat we’ve ever had and definitely lives the good life. She’s also great Facebook fodder as she’s known for making some pretty outrageous faces.
Guitar Huggers….are you one of us?
Now that I’ve told you our life stories and let you in on what we do I’ll finish out by asking you some questions:
• Do you feel a thrill when you see a broken guitar that you know you can repair?
• Have you always wanted to work on guitars to flip?
• Is your basement full of guitars waiting for parts?
• Have you made outrageous artwork using guitars?
• Does finding a bargain guitar make your day?
• Ever fix a guitar and then proudly show off your handiwork to bandmates and friends?
If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions I’d say you’re one of us. A Guitar Hugger. We’ve got what you need to start hugging even more.
What’s on the horizon?
More guitar parts. More broken guitars. More adventures. More happy customers!
Welcome to Guitar Huggers
We've been helping guitar builders fuel their passion for over 12 years. We carry a huge selection of replacement guitar parts including name brands from Epiphone to Takamine. We specialize in near-factory guitar parts, perfect for repairing your bass or guitar, acoustic or classical. Upgrade your favorite ax or build one from scratch. We have guitar bodies and necks, pickups, tuners, bridges and more. We are located outside Beautiful Cleveland, Ohio. Customer service, quality products and fast shipping are our specialties.
Sierra Alpine SD35CE Acoustic Electric Guitar, for Repair
Another beauty from Sierra. If you are an electronics person this project is right up your alley.
- Straight neck
- Truss rod works properly
- The electronics work BUT the tuner is bad
- Mounting ring for preamp cracked
- This guitar has been USED
- Acoustic electric dreadnought cutaway body style
- Spruce top
- Mahogany back and sides
- Rosewood body binding
- Mahogany neck
- Wooden inlay soundhole rosette
- Rosewood fingerboard
- Nickel/silver frets
- Pearlized dot inlays with 12th fret “Alpine” inlay
- Diecast chrome ComfortGrip machine heads
- Rosewood bridge
- Barcus Berry Breeze IV preamp system
*Major defects detailed; there may be more (defects) we could not detect. Fair and accurate to the best of our ability. You are purchasing a project guitar. Due to volume we no longer test all necks or electronics. Some of our descriptions are based on the notes made by the luthiers at our supplier.