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View Full Version : We are getting ripped off!



bobmyers
02-09-2012, 12:25 PM
OK, :(
Did I get your attention?
I just purchased (on ebay) from a music store, a brand new Guitar. A Seagull Maritime SWS Folk type guitar made in Canada. Solid cedar top and solid Mahogany back and sides. With hard case I purchased this guitar for less than $750 delivered. It is unbelievable in construction, materials , finish and sound. I have a William King tenor a Compass Rose tenor and a Kanile'a Super tenor, all cost a lot more than the Seagull and barely sound or look as good. I wish Seagull made ukuleles.
Really, I don't know how they do it. No cheap Chinese labor.
I paid $2000 plus for my King, both are hand made but value and quality are totally different. Quality I perceive as equal, value is no contest, Seagull wins.
I can't figure it?
Bob

rbeetsme
02-09-2012, 12:30 PM
I'm pretty sure Seagulls are chinese made. I checked out the website, a lot of asians working there! Just kidding. The key here is volume. Bigger market for the guitars.

cb56
02-09-2012, 12:36 PM
seagulls have always been a great instrument for the money. I used to own an S6 and it was great!

ukegirl
02-09-2012, 01:08 PM
If they made Ukes it would be a high quality solid wood, very likely cherry, and sell for about $275 with a nice bag.....

PoiDog
02-09-2012, 01:55 PM
Well, aside from the volume of business, you also have to consider that the Canadian dollar is low compared to the US dollar (works in our favor), plus cedar is cheaper than koa, and even though it's a beautiful instrument, that Seagull guitar is mass produced, while your Compass Rose and Kanilea have much more hand-crafting associated with them

Perhaps a better comparison would have been the Seagull to the Mainland or solid wood Islander.

I'm just saying ...

23skidoo
02-09-2012, 02:01 PM
I own a Godin archtop guitar - same company, same factory...... a great guitar for the price - real value.....

LeftyT
02-09-2012, 02:02 PM
The CDN dollar is basically at par with the USD. Hey, I'm Canadian and take pride in the fact. :D

Joshypogi
02-09-2012, 02:05 PM
Some of the custom uke prices can buy a vintage brazillian rosewood acoustic guitar.

KimosTherapy
02-09-2012, 02:12 PM
Great purchase Bob!

My first acoustic steel string guitar was a Seagull Maritime Mini Jumbo - Cedar Top/Mahogany Back & Sides. Great guitar!

ukebuilder
02-09-2012, 02:35 PM
I agree, I bought one ages ago and love it. Mine was the rosewood back and sides and ceder top. Mine also came with a LL Bags pick up.

cornfedgroove
02-09-2012, 02:36 PM
you simply cant go wrong with a seagull...I know lots of guys that have held onto theirs for eons. It is the best bang for the buck at its price range no doubt

provines
02-09-2012, 03:01 PM
I have heard that building a uke that sounds good is much more difficult than making a guitar that sounds good. You will always pay more for a custom anything over a mass produced instrument.

I own a Seagull Mini Jumbo and it is a nice instrument. Godin knows how to mass produce a nice product.

Drew Bear
02-09-2012, 03:02 PM
I wish Seagull made ukuleles.
You should email them and suggest they start building ukes. I'm sure a guitar company won't "rip us off". Just look at the reasonable prices of Taylor, Collings, Martin & Breedlove ukes.

Didn't one of the guitar company reps say that the uke was a quarter the size of a guitar and twice as difficult to make? Maybe that's marketing spin, but there might also be some truth in there.

Everyone is free to play either instrument and pay a wide range of prices for either instrument. I think others have pointed out that compared to many stringed instruments (mandolin, violin, etc.), ukes are relatively inexpensive.

23skidoo
02-09-2012, 03:06 PM
I'm amazed at how nice my little $100 Kala laminate sounds. It's been my experience that an equivalently priced guitar is pretty much a clunker.

PoiDog
02-09-2012, 03:26 PM
The CDN dollar is basically at par with the USD. Hey, I'm Canadian and take pride in the fact. :D

Well, we in the states are looking up at both the Australian dollar and the Pound Sterling, so it's not like the US can brag about its currency.

BlackBearUkes
02-09-2012, 04:48 PM
Are you seriously comparing a guitar to ukuleles? That's like comparing grand pianos to auto harps. Trying comparing your Seagull to a King or Turner guitar, that might be of more interest.

Bill Mc
02-09-2012, 05:12 PM
Maybe you are being "ripped off" in your ukulele purchases but not me. For example, my solid mahogany body, solid maple neck Bruko#6 exudes impeccable German craftsmanship for merely $228.93 shipped with a gig bag. Made in a family owned small factory in Germany. In every way it is the equal to your beautiful Seagull guitar.

OldePhart
02-09-2012, 05:39 PM
Seagulls are great guitars but they really aren't quite in the same category as a Martin or a Taylor. I wouldn't hesitate to buy a new Martin or Taylor sight unseen via mail order - I've owned a Seagull and it was a great axe but I wouldn't order one sight unseen unless there was a fantastic return policy.

There is quite a bit of variation across the line, or there was back when I got mine (99 or 2000, if I remember right). I hit a number of music shops around the metroplex and played several S6 models before choosing one. All but one of them were very good value, but the "voice" was very different across the samples I played. One of them honestly shouldn't have gotten out of the factory. It had a very nasty rough burl on the fretboard up around the 12th fret that appeared to be unstable.

Back then the price for an S6 was about $300 US and I felt like I got very good value for my money. If I'd ordered via mail or the web and gotten that one with the gnarly fretboard it would have been a different story. :)

I kept that guitar for quite a while, gave it to my son-in-law for a while, then traded him a Taylor jumbo to get it back (the Jumbo was too hard on my hands). I gave it to a friend when I found out that she'd broken the headstock on her guitar (I'd purchased a Taylor 312CE by then so the Seagull was becoming a closet queen and was too nice a guitar to let languish).

John

Tommy B
02-09-2012, 05:52 PM
I have two Godin guitars, a Simon & Patrick mini-jumbo acoustic and a La Patrie Motif classical. Both are outstanding and far exceed their price point, and I can only marvel at how they do it. I would love to see Godin try its hand at making ukes.

Hippie Dribble
02-09-2012, 05:53 PM
I consider your purchase to be just average value Bob, really. You're talking about a stock, factory instrument. 750 for a seagull...yeah, ok. Not sure how you can make a serious comparison in terms of value and quality when you're trying to make a 'look' and 'sound' comparison between a seagull guitar and a custom, hand built ukulele. They're different instruments mate, which look and sound completely different. I have a couple of custom ukes which were very expensive, and yet I consider them to be well worth the price in terms of both value and quality. Ripped off? Again, not sure where you're going with that, apart from making a facetious remark which is at best debatable, and at worst, offensive and inflammatory. You're talking about - in terms of both build process, sound and aesthetics - chalk and cheese

bobmyers
02-10-2012, 06:09 AM
Ok everyone, I know Seagulls are assembly line Guitars, but they are made in America, the first issue. Some very well known and respected uke makers use an assembly line approach. I give you Kamaka and Kanile'a both make great ukes but priced more reasonable though higher than Seagull. I would put Seagulls construction on par with any other Guitars I have seen, including Martins and Taylors, remember I am not talking about the S6 (though no slight intended, just not solid wood) which should vary in sound from unit to unit because the cherry laminate back and sides has a million variations in tone reproduction before Seagull even touches it.
Now maybe I just got a sweet sounding one by luck or maybe assembly line construction is capable of more precision and smaller tolerances, and therefore be more consistant in sound add all solid wood and the result is more consistent. Removing the variables increases the successful outcome.
In any case I still love my King, Compass Rose and Kanile'a super tenor They sound great, but if there is ever a fire in the house I will get them out first.
Just felt like grumbling a little bit, but actually I'm quite happy.:o
Bob

Skitzic
02-10-2012, 06:53 AM
Check out Seagulls' website.

Link (http://www.seagullguitars.com/)


Canadian Made, Globally Played

That's right on their front page.


Being able to say these words and truthfully mean it, is something we are very proud of in this day and age. All of our Seagull guitars are made in Canada from start to finish.

It's in the small village of LaPatrie in the Eastern Townships of Quebec, where for more than a quarter century the crafting of Seagull guitars has been a true passion for the many devoted guitar makers who call LaPatrie home. Today, LaPatrie has a population of about 475 and about half of these people are guitar builders. These folks take a great deal of pride in the guitars they build.

Sorry Bob. Canada isn't America. Unless you mean North American made?

byjimini
02-10-2012, 07:12 AM
You're not being ripped off at all. For the Compass Rose, you paid for Rick Turner's time. For the Seagull, you paid for a Chinese workers time.

The difference is the Chinese workers get paid peanuts, therefore their products are cheaper. If that's alright with you, then go for it. For me, it isn't alright.

icuker
02-10-2012, 07:13 AM
I have had a hard time finding a new, one off, high quality, hand built guitar for $700 dollars. Those tend to be in the thousands of dollars. I have had a chance to play some Godin products under various names before, though, and some I have really liked.

hmgberg
02-10-2012, 07:35 AM
The United States of America is part of the continent of North America, as is Canada. It could be rightfully said Seagulls are "American" made, North American made, anyway. Seagulls are not, however, made in the United States of America. We "Americans" lay claim to the entirety of two continents, both North and South America when we speak of ourselves as "Americans" and mean citizens of the USA. We don't do it because we are a bunch of "USA-holes," I hope. Perhaps we do it because to call ourselves "United States of America Americans," while more accurate, is a cumbersome mouthful. United Staters would be misleading as we often disagree when making statements. I looked up Richard Bach, who wrote Jonathan Livingston Seagull, on Wikipedia. I thought that maybe one Seagull, albeit a fictional Seagull, was created in the United States. Indeed, Richard Bach lives in the United States of America. Wikipedia says that he's an "American" writer. 'Tis a puzzlement. I think Bob's point is that Seagulls are not made in China using "cheap labor." Apparently, neither was Jonathan Livingston Seagull.

Markr1
02-10-2012, 08:21 AM
If I was going to buy another guitar it wouldn't be a seagull. Not because their not made in the US but because over the years I've never heard anyone say anything good or bad about them till reading this thread.

davo17
02-10-2012, 08:24 AM
Think of it this way Your Uke is American made and you will get a higher resale price verses your seagull ,so you can pass your inequity
down the line at the time of your choosing. Have you played your seagull next to a Taylor or Martin? Some things sound great till they are in the same room with the real deal.

GX9901
02-10-2012, 08:30 AM
I can understand comparing workmanship and material between the Seagull guitar and the custom ukes, but how does one begin to compare the sound between guitar and ukulele? I have trouble understanding what it means when one says a Seagull guitar sounds as good or better than a William King or Compass Rose ukulele.

hmgberg
02-10-2012, 08:41 AM
I have a watch made in Japan. It keeps better time than my ukuleles made in the United States of America. I'm working on my rhythm, though. It's a process, I tell myself.

JamieFromOntario
02-10-2012, 08:53 AM
You're not being ripped off at all. For the Compass Rose, you paid for Rick Turner's time. For the Seagull, you paid for a Chinese workers time.

The difference is the Chinese workers get paid peanuts, therefore their products are cheaper. If that's alright with you, then go for it. For me, it isn't alright.

Uh...did you read the post above yours?




The United States of America is part of the continent of North America, as is Canada. It could be rightfully said Seagulls are "American" made, North American made, anyway. Seagulls are not, however, made in the United States of America. We "Americans" lay claim to the entirety of two continents, both North and South America when we speak of ourselves as "Americans" and mean citizens of the USA. We don't do it because we are a bunch of "USA-holes," I hope. Perhaps we do it because to call ourselves "United States of America Americans," while more accurate, is a cumbersome mouthful. United Staters would be misleading as we often disagree when making statements. I looked up Richard Bach, who wrote Jonathan Livingston Seagull, on Wikipedia. I thought that maybe one Seagull, albeit a fictional Seagull, was created in the United States. Indeed, Richard Bach lives in the United States of America. Wikipedia says that he's an "American" writer. 'Tis a puzzlement. I think Bob's point is that Seagulls are not made in China using "cheap labor." Apparently, neither was Jonathan Livingston Seagull.

I do agree that the first dictionary definition of 'American' is as you describe, someone who is a citizen of a country in the Americas. However, I would hazard a guess that, when someone or something is referred to as 'American,' they or it are universally understood to be from the USA. I have never heard of a Canadian refer to themselves as an American. Along the same lines, I'd like to see a Republican event where Mexican Citizens are referred to as Americans. That would make for a great Daily Show sound bite.


Back on topic - though i'm no guitar player, I've been really impressed by the Seagull guitars i've seen.

bluesuke
02-10-2012, 08:59 AM
Think of it this way Your Uke is American made and you will get a higher resale price verses your seagull ,so you can pass your inequity
down the line at the time of your choosing. Have you played your seagull next to a Taylor or Martin? Some things sound great till they are in the same room with the real deal.

If I'm not mistaken Taylor and Martin do some manufacturing in Mexico. Cheap labor

Stevelele
02-10-2012, 09:01 AM
I bought a suit at a US department store for $500, and in China I got one custom made for $50. Did I get ripped off in the US?

hmgberg
02-10-2012, 09:19 AM
Uh...did you read the post above yours?





I do agree that the first dictionary definition of 'American' is as you describe, someone who is a citizen of a country in the Americas. However, I would hazard a guess that, when someone or something is referred to as 'American,' they or it are universally understood to be from the USA. I have never heard of a Canadian refer to themselves as an American. Along the same lines, I'd like to see a Republican event where Mexican Citizens are referred to as Americans. That would make for a great Daily Show sound bite.


Back on topic - though i'm no guitar player, I've been really impressed by the Seagull guitars i've seen.

Jamie, Canadians probably don't refer to themselves as Americans because they don't want to be mistaken for people from the United States...as in "those ugly Americans." Ugly Americans make some damn nice ukes though, back on topic.

Tommy B
02-10-2012, 09:30 AM
What does China have to do with this discussion? Why do some posters keep bringing up China and Chinese labor? Seagull guitars are built in Canada, just like Larrivees. To me, that's part of what makes them bargains: They didn't outsource the labor to a developing nation with lower wages and lesser worker protections ... and yet they produce consistently high-quality instruments. That's why I'd love to see them try their hand at making ukes. (As for the comparison of assembly-line produced instruments with luthier-crafted pieces, that's just silly and I assume the OP was being facetious.)

Stevelele
02-10-2012, 09:33 AM
Because we aren't paying that much attention. Sorry!


What does China have to do with this discussion? Why do some posters keep bringing up China and Chinese labor? Seagull guitars are built in Canada, just like Larrivees. To me, that's part of what makes them bargains: They didn't outsource the labor to a developing nation with lower wages and lesser worker protections ... and yet they produce consistently high-quality instruments. That's why I'd love to see them try their hand at making ukes. (As for the comparison of assembly-line produced instruments with luthier-crafted pieces, that's just silly and I assume the OP was being facetious.)

OldePhart
02-10-2012, 11:54 AM
If I'm not mistaken Taylor and Martin do some manufacturing in Mexico. Cheap labor

I don't think Taylor does any manufacturing in Mexico. They don't really have an economy line unless you consider the "Baby" and "Big Baby" guitars, which might be made offshore, I don't know.

Martin may do some especially for their "entry level" line. However, the last I heard even those were shipped to the states and set up in the regular Martin factory before being sent to distributors.

From what I've seen most Mexican guitar work is pretty decent, anyway. Standard joke is that the Fender standard line is made in Mexico by cheap Mexican labor and the American Standard line is made in California by cheap Mexican labor. LOL

John

soupking
02-10-2012, 12:10 PM
I don't think Taylor does any manufacturing in Mexico. They don't really have an economy line unless you consider the "Baby" and "Big Baby" guitars, which might be made offshore, I don't know.

Martin may do some especially for their "entry level" line. However, the last I heard even those were shipped to the states and set up in the regular Martin factory before being sent to distributors.

From what I've seen most Mexican guitar work is pretty decent, anyway. Standard joke is that the Fender standard line is made in Mexico by cheap Mexican labor and the American Standard line is made in California by cheap Mexican labor. LOL

John

John, I'm fairly certain the 100 and 200 guitars are made in Mexico, along with the Baby's, too. I'm almost positive there's a factory there.

- Matt