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Username: stout71

Post Number: 13
Registered: 7-2011
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 - 1:37 pm:   Edit Post

Ok, folks. Although there are a zillion posts that talk about production to delivery wait times, can anyone share their experiences about wait times from the point that you paid your deposit until the bass/guitar went into production? I'm interested not because I am overzealous or impatient, but because I'm excited as hell.

I realize that there are going to be many variables, like custom design work in the planning stage, but I'd appreciate your feedback nonetheless. Many thanks.
Username: deburgh

Post Number: 72
Registered: 3-2007
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 - 3:33 pm:   Edit Post

There are a ton of variables involved. My first custom bass was just under a year from when I put in the deposit to when it was done. The one I've got going now has been about 10 months, and when I last spoke to Mica they were still matching up the woods to make sure everything is going to be perfect before they start construction, so it's a long ways out still. Check out the factory to customer section of the message board, you can see there what some of the wait times for others have been. The wait is tough for sure, but you just can't rush art. It'll be worth it in the end, trust me :-)
Username: stout71

Post Number: 14
Registered: 7-2011
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 - 4:19 pm:   Edit Post

Thanks. I know there are long wait times until I get the thing in my hands. I'm more interested in knowing about the time from deposit until initial production. After that point, I'll be able to follow the progress on the Club forum. I have scoured the Factory to Customer section, but it's generally not a good place to find that specific answer. It is however, as you stated, a great place to research wait times once they get started.

I've waited 40 years for this, so I can wait a little longer and I'm not in a rush. By the time this one is delivered, I'll have saved up enough cash for #2. :-)
Senior Member
Username: hydrargyrum

Post Number: 1059
Registered: 3-2004
Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 - 4:54 pm:   Edit Post

I think your question probably depends a great deal on the sort of options you are interested in. If you are looking for variations on an existing model, things might proceed fairly quickly. On the other hand, if you want elaborate inlays or custom electronics, things could take quite some time. Some finishes take longer (black in particular seems to need lots of care), and some particularly oily woods like Coco Bolo seem to take longer as well to finish. Wait times also seems to depend a great deal on the other projects the shop is completing. Some customs proceed remarkably quickly, others seem to take longer. Not much help I know, but at least there's a friendly community to help the wait. :-)

Some folks seem to relieve the anxiety by purchasing a used Alembic during the wait. These are often sold after completion, but then again, many become backup instruments, or favorites in their own right. Alembic is an awesome company, and there's a reason why people become life long admirers.
Username: stout71

Post Number: 15
Registered: 7-2011
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2011 - 11:21 am:   Edit Post

Guys, just to be clear - I don't expect anyone to foresee the future. I just want to know what your experiences have been with regards to this. Thanks for all the comments thus far!
Senior Member
Username: 811952

Post Number: 2038
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2011 - 12:29 pm:   Edit Post

I think probably the experiences have been that the wait is unbearable but well worth it!
Senior Member
Username: pace

Post Number: 777
Registered: 4-2004
Posted on Thursday, October 13, 2011 - 4:06 pm:   Edit Post

From deposit/order to production for me took a couple of months. What really held my custom order up was the fact that I was vague on my spacing, nut and bridge widths. I placed my order in April or May, and visited the factory in late June. It was a tricky proposition for all of us; mainly because I ordered a short scale 6 string in the fashion of a tic-tack bass with heavier gauges and slightly wider spacing. But, once I was there and ironed things out in person, the timeline was acceptable despite my obvious anxiety, which Mica was able to quell with a couple of pleasant phone calls along the way..... :-)
Senior Member
Username: bigredbass

Post Number: 1774
Registered: 9-2002
Posted on Friday, October 14, 2011 - 12:19 am:   Edit Post

I always advise that there's custom with a little 'c' (that is, some fairly easy variation from one of their production templates), and then there's custom with a BIG 'c': THIS is where you want an 11-string bass shaped like the Starship Enterprise in all ebony with a purpleheart bridge and tuners, and with GPS built in. THIS takes a lot longer . . . .

And of course these choices play against the backdrop of their workload at the shop, vacations, etc. And remember this is a small family business with a small crew of fanatics who don't know the words, 'that's good enough'.

I ordered a five-string Elan using basically all 'production' features and an off-the-menu electronis package, and it took about ten months. I did a LOT of homework in educating myself to their themes so when I did talk to Susan, it went down real easy and pretty quick, as she filled in the blanks and knew just what to ask. Do NOT underestimate Susan and Mica's sympatico in translating what you want into their axes.

I had no F-T-C thread, never called to see 'how it was coming', I just knew I'd see it when they were finished with it. And I did !

J o e y

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