Frequently Asked Questions
Who are you guys?
We're a small, independent music store located in the heart of Lawrence, Kansas. You'll find us at the corner of 14th & Massachusetts Street – known locally as 'Mass Street'. For 31 years, we've been, first and foremost, a top quality resource for musicians to find great gear and get exceptional repair work done. Whether it's a guitar for your child, your first banjo or your dream guitar (at last!), we strive to provide the best made gear and best service around. What sets us apart from other stores is our excellent customer service, unique gear, our knowledgeable staff, and our dedication to helping you get what you're looking for.
We have a well-considered collection of gear in our store, at many different price levels – the introductory 'starter guitar' is treated with as much care and consideration as the 'cadillac' electric or acoustic, or that prized, out-of-this-world vintage Martin. Every new instrument gets a free set up from one of our four luthiers too. All used and consignment gear is carefully assessed by our staff and luthiers, before it ever goes on the floor or online. We are happy to do custom and special orders and our Repair Shop is second to none - from mods to full restorations. Lawrence has vibrant music community – and has for decades. We're proud to be part of it. We love playing music and we want you to too!
What payment methods do you accept?
We accept PayPal, MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, Cashier's Check or money orders (and of course cash, just don't send it to us through the mail!). We also offer interest-free 6 month financing through the PayPal Credit program.
What are your shipping policies?
In most cases shipping is on us! Any new or used gear (purchased directly from our website) $25 or over gets shipped to you for FREE via one of our favorite carriers, Fed Ex – ground or USPS, to all 'lower 48' U.S. states. Alaska and Hawaii. Expedited shipping, international shipping are more (more info on these below).
If you'd like your item quicker, no problem! It will cost a bit more, but you'll have it in your hands before you know it. We can ship all forms of UPS and Fed Ex Express and we'll send you tracking info too, so you can see exactly when it'll arrive. Please note that we are not able to ship to P.O. Boxes, and sorry, no C.O.D.s no way, no how. For your gear's safety, we have to have a valid address where a real person can sign for the gear when it arrives. If that doesn't work for you, we are happy to ship it to the nearest carrier's hub so you can pick it up safe and sound there.
What if I get an instrument and don't like it?
What? How could that possibly happen? Rest easy! All our gear comes with a 7-day return policy! An extra 24 hours is added on for acoustic instruments during the winter season, to allow the contents to reach room temperature before you open the box. If you are not completely satisfied with the instrument, just return it via your preferred common carrier. Also, we do not send out instruments for evaluation without payment in full.
How do I return an item?
It's easy – just give us a call! We ask that you very carefully pack the gear up in its original carton, with all the accessories and paper work included, and ship it back to us via a common carrier (not Uncle Al's Pony Express) to us. Please insure it for the full retail amount. If the item is damaged while in transit, we'll notify you and ask that you file a claim with your preferred shipper. Once the item arrives back to us and we unpack it, we will issue a full credit for the item, less the shipping charges. (A return voids any free shipping offers and the customer is liable for shipping charges both ways.) If the item is not in its original condition, or is returned after the normal evaluation period has expired without prior arrangement with us, re-stocking fees and other charges may apply.
What if my instrument gets damaged during shipping?
In case of damage, first let the Fed Ex or UPS driver know of any sign of damage and inspect the package before they leave. If there is damage, contact us right away at 1-800-747-9980. We'll issue a call tag to have the package inspected and picked up. Calling us and letting us know gets the ball rolling so we can get the package returned and get a refund or replacement to you as soon as possible.
What winter precautions should I take when receiving or caring for an instrument?
Cold weather and indoor heating can wreak havoc with wooden instruments, but a few easy precautions will ensure your guitar plays great all winter.
If you're getting a guitar shipped to you during the winter months, please wait 24 hours for your new instrument to acclimate to room temperature before you open it. We'll even tack on an extra day of the evaluation period in the winter so you can do this. We advise leaving it in the case and in the box. We know, we know, you'll be dying to try out your new instrument - but you'll also be kicking yourself if you open a frozen case and watch the lacquer finish on your custom Collings Brazilian start to crack, so be patient. (We feel so strongly about this that if damage occurs due to opening a cold case, it could void your refund.)
We also suggest keeping your new instrument between 65 and 75 degrees F and at a relative humidity of 40 to 50 percent. These are the conditions of our climate controlled store (and the manufacturer) – perfect for the optimum set up and tone for your instrument. This is especially recommended for high end solid wood instruments and electric guitars that use thin lacquer finishes. In the winter months, we also recommend using a Kyser or similar sound hole humidifier if the humidity in your area drops below 40 percent or if you use indoor heating during winter months. In general, you should always strive to keep instruments away from wide fluctuations in humidity and heat.
Are the instruments on your site out where people can play them?
In most cases, yes. We're a real 'brick and mortar' store, not a warehouse, so the instruments are generally on display so folks can see them and try them out. Often there will be favorite brands that we have more stock of, and we generally will display just one. If this is a concern for you, just give us a call- we are happy to check if we have extra stock, or give you a detailed in-hand description of a specific instrument. We often special order instruments for folks, so this is also an option too.
Why do we display the instruments?
1. If you see something on our web site and you live in the area, or are traveling through, stop by and check out our comfortable store. We keep our web inventory updated regularly, and while this is no guarantee the instrument you are seeing on the site will be here when you arrive, it does allow you to "window shop" before you call or come in. We don't have separate web and store inventories. Everything we have in our inventory is for sale whether you are in Alaska or you live just down the street!
2. Displaying the instruments in the store also allows us to inspect each instrument as it comes in, and set each instrument up well.
3. It gives our sales staff time to get to know each piece. Even the same models of some guitars can have slightly different nuances – having our staff know our gear ensures we can help you find exactly what you're after.
4. On very popular, non-custom models, we often have an untouched stock of guitars. We also would be more than happy to order a brand new guitar and leave it in the carton if you so desire.
Do you take international orders?
Yes we do! We ship instruments around the globe. There are a few brands we are prohibited by the manufacturer from shipping overseas, so just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire. For international shipments, we find that USPS is the most economical method for customers. There are several choices from 1-2 days (USPS Global Express Guaranteed), 3-5 days (USPS Express Mail International) to 6-10 days (Priority Mail International) to choose from. We're happy to work with you to get the instrument of your choice to you in a timely manner.
For international shipments, please also keep in mind:
1. We accept payment from verified PayPal accounts only.
2. You are responsible for any duties or customs fees and taxes that may be added in the country of destination.
3. Invoice totals and the carriage, insurance and customs values must match.
4. Shipping totals are non-negotiable and any standard free shipping offers do not apply to international sales.
5. We reserve the right to refuse doing business with countries that have dubious reputations for fraud.
Is your store climate controlled?
Yes. This not only insures you a comfortable place to shop, but it keeps all of our inventory and instrument repairs at the proper temperature and humidity for optimum set up and tone.
Do you offer trades and consignment? Do you buy used gear? We do! All of our trades, consignments, and used purchases are evaluated on a case by case basis. Feel free to e-mail or call us at 1-800-747-9980 or in Kansas, 785-843-3535.
Do you offer layaway?
We do! Just put 20% down and pay off the balance in 60 days. If you need special arrangements, just ask. Layaway is available on new items, and for in-store customers. Sorry, layaway is not available on consignment and used gear.
Do you offer financing?
We do! You can apply for financing through Paypal's PayPal Credit program - this offers interest free financing on purchases over $99 if paid in full within 6 months. If you don't already have PayPal Credit set up, just add the instrument you want to your cart and apply for PayPal Credit as you check out.
Do you have Gift Cards?
We do! You can find our Gift Cards here, in denominations from $10 - $100. If you'd like a different amount, just give us a call at 800-747-9980 to order one over the phone, or email us. We'll also send it along to the recipient for you, or send it to you if you prefer for gifting later.
Do you offer appraisal services?
We do! If you just want to know what something might be worth, you can catch Jim here frequently and just ask. For formal insurance and other appraisals, please call to make an appointment. A formal written appraisal is $50 for most solid and acoustic guitars, $80 for most archtops (due to time involved in authenticating some internal parts). If you would like a complete set of digital photographs on CD to accompany the appraisal, it is an additional $50. To schedule an appraisal, just give us a call at 1-800-747-9980.