Repairs and Setups

The Learnings, Experiences, and Musings of The Laboratory's newest employee.

It's Musing's time, everyone!

Here at The Lab, I find myself taking on a large variety of tasks and responsibilities. There is always more work to be done here. The past couple of weeks, I've been dealing mostly in retail. Things like keeping up with our inventory, tagging items, moving boxes around, packing up online orders, selling guitars, etc... All these things are, of course, the majority of what keeps the lights on around here. We are a retail shop, after all. But we also deal in things like lessons, repairs, and for me at least, social media and blogging. There are generally 3 main things I do around here: Retail, Repairs, and our online presence. Retail is always first in line. If I'm working on a guitar repair/setup or cooking up a new edition of Gavin's Musings and a customer walks in wanting help with something, I, of course, must prioritize the customer. The same is true for something like an online order too. However, yesterday happened to be a slower day and Stefan and I cranked out some setups and repairs.

Upon first arriving at The Lab yesterday, I was leaning against our great wall of bass gear when I noticed a really icky cigarette smell. I'm sure everyone reading has bought something used from a smoker. We all know how stubborn the odor can be. Well, we recently acquired a used bass head from a smoker and man, did that thing smell. Just being near it, I caught a huge whiff of it. Without thinking, I started taking screws out of the thing. Sometimes there is foam blocking the ventilation holes on amps. The purpose of this is to stop people from dropping small items into the electronics and possibly damaging the machine. Well, the foam on this amp had clearly been exposed to far too much smoke and was in desperate need of some de-odorizing. Upon getting the amp taken apart, I was greeted by plenty of yellow-stained dust. I promptly began dusting the amp as well as using Ozium air cleaner, which Aaron happened to have in his car. Aaron could attest that this stuff is great for removing cigarette smell, as the previous owner of his car was a smoker and that was what led him to buy the Ozium. Anyway, I dusted the amp, sprayed the Ozium, gave the foam a good beating and shake, cleaned the electronics for good measure, and finally buttoned the thing back up. A day later, it's safe to say that my treatment worked and the cigarette smell is gone!

As the day went on, Stefan and I worked with some guitars that needed various work done on them. A couple of restrings and setups, but notably I got to do some soldering work! If you're not familiar, soldering is something that we often do when working with electronics. It is the process of joining (usually) conductive wires/metals to one another. Using a very hot soldering iron, we briefly melt something called "Solder" over the surfaces we want to join to one another and establish an electrical connection. You can almost think of it as welding but for electronics. (That comparison will upset welders). Almost any time electronics work is happening on your guitar, there is going to be some soldering involved. Soldering is something that I've done from time to time for years now, but I've never been particularly stellar at it. I've always enjoyed it, but there is a lot that can go wrong. There are nearly thousand-degree pieces of metal involved, sensitive electronics, etc, etc... A steady hand is definitely not gonna be to your detriment when soldering. Luckily, I had the very experienced Stefan by my side. Stefan has been working on guitars for nearly 20 years, and his dad, whom is NASA certified to solder, taught him the trade. So, it's safe to say I picked up a trick or two haha. Yesterday was the best, easiest, and cleanest solder job I've ever done, all thanks to Stefan's guidance. Thanks, Stefan! I definitely look forward to continuing to get better at soldering. It is a useful and fun skill to practice.

Before I end this week's edition of Gavin's Musings, I want to take a moment to tell everyone about some really exciting sales happening at The Laboratory this month. The Laboratory was first established in 2007 with a location in Deptford. That store closed in 2017 and The Lab was moved to online shopping only. In 2022 we opened what is currently our only location here at 12 Somerdale Road. This month marks 2 years here! In celebration of 2 years at this location, we are having a very large sale. However, this isn't your typical sale! This week, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Come try your luck on our Wheel of Deals! At our register, we'll have a spinning wheel setup. Give it a spin before you check with a chance to score some hefty discounts! Next Friday, May 17th, You can get your guitar restrung for free! Buy a set of strings in-store and we'll slap 'em on for ya real quick, free of charge. Saturday, May 18th, is our main event, an event that's been anticipated for months. "The List Sale." Shortly, Aaron will release a list of items with discounts ranging up to 50% off! Next Saturday only, these items will be on sale for the prices shown on the list. We did this last year and I'm told we literally had a line around the building. Also happening is a bunch of Giveaways! We've got some seriously awesome stuff we're looking to give to you, for free! For every item you purchase this month during one of our events, you earn an entry. You can also earn an entry by writing us a review on Google or Facebook. We have been spending the past couple of weeks brainstorming the coolest sales to have to celebrate two years at 12 Somerdale Road, and we are all seriously stoked to see it all come to fruition soon. I hope to see you in-store, dear reader!

That's all I got for you this week, folks. I really do appreciate all the readers this blog has started amassing. Thanks for staying tuned! Till next time, everyone. Take care.


Repairs and Setups
Gavin Miele May 11, 2024
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Mr. Barbarics, Welcome back!
The Learnings, Experiences, and Musings of The Laboratory's newest employee.