Washburn Frequently Asked Questions

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General | Electronics | Maintenance & Technical | Warranty | Older Models

Are standard Washburn models available with custom options?
No, standard models are only produced to catalogue specs and custom options are not presently available.

Can I buy an instrument from Washburn directly?
Washburn Guitars are available only through our authorized dealer network. For a complete list of our authorized Washburn dealers, please visit our DEALER LOCATOR.

Are any Washburn instruments available in left-hand versions?
Some models are produced in a left-handed configuration. Please contact a Washburn dealer for availability.

What is my Washburn worth?
Washburn does not evaluate or appraise pre-owned instruments, as there are many considerations in pricing that our beyond our references or control. Local market conditions, condition, ect can all play major factors. Because Washburn does not purchase used instruments, we do not track this information and are unable to answer this style of request. To have an instrument professionally appraised, we would suggest the fine folks at Gruhn (Gruhn.com) or any retailer that is in the market of purchasing/trading pre-owned instruments.

How can I get a catalogue?
Our website is a great (and environmentally friendly) way to view our current offerings. If you would like a printed copy of a catalogue, please write us at:

U.S. Music Corp.
1000 Corporate Grove Dr.
Buffalo Grove, IL 60089

I didn't get an owners manual for my instrument. How can I get one?
Presently, there are no specific manuals for Washburn instruments. Proper care and maintenance details can be found on your warranty paperwork. Instrument learning materials are also available where instruments are sold, and cover more care and maintenance details in depth.

Where can I get a case for my Washburn instrument?
Washburn only offers cases for select instruments currently in production. They are available via special order from your favourite Washburn dealer.

There are a great variety of 3rd party instrument case manufacturers. We recommend bringing your guitar to your favourite local music store for a proper case fitting.

If dimension measurements are required, we recommend measuring the instrument. Washburn cannot provide specific dimension measurements on older instruments.

How can I date/identify my Washburn instrument?
Washburn has used many serial number formats over the years, ranging from 4-12 characters long. The year of manufacture can be deduced from the first few numerical characters in the serial number.

Either the first 2 digits, or the first digit, are typically used to identify the year of manufacture.

For example, 8901827 indicate the instrument was made in 1989, 1988, or 1998. You can confirm the year of manufacture by visiting our guitar archives reference pricelists/ catalogs.

Instruments with serial numbers that have 5 or more characters are from the late 1980's-2000's

Instruments with serial numbers that have 5 characters or less are typically from the 1980's.

Instruments with serial numbers that have 4 characters are from the 1970's and early 1980's.

For instruments produced after 2010, usually the first 4 digits can indicate the year of manufacture.

There is no serial number information or tracking capability for pre-1978 models.

If the instrument does not have a serial number, it is likely a factory prototype or sample, and it is impossible to gauge its exact age. We recommend visiting our Guitar Archives and viewing the annual catalogs to find the closest match.

Washburn maintains limited production records. Washburn can only identify instruments via email, and with a clear digital photograph and serial number. We cannot guarantee that we are able to date your instrument.

How can I find out prices on new guitars?
For pricing, please contact your dealer or the international distributor for your country.

How do I get replacement parts for my instrument?
Washburn tries to use as many standardized instrument parts as possible, to make field-service easier. Most technicians capable of performing repair work have easy access to them, via a variety of instrument parts dealers/suppliers.

For do-it-yourselfers, we highly recommend any of the following aftermarket guitar parts dealers, as they offer the most variety and stock.

Stewmac.com
Allparts.com
Guitarfetish.com
Wdmusicproducts.com

Please note that they cannot identify a part by the guitar model, just the style/measurement of the part you are looking for.

Most service technicians in the field have standardized parts readily available from the above suppliers.

In the event that the part you are looking for is specialized and unique to Washburn Guitars, please contact our Support Department at 1-800-877-6863. We may require a picture of the defective part to ensure availability.

How can I find out the status of my order that was placed through an authorized Washburn Dealer?
Only your authorized Washburn dealer can provide you with the status of your order. Please contact your authorized dealer, as Washburn cannot advise the status of individual's instrument orders or shipments.

I live in the U.S. How can I find the nearest Washburn dealer?
To find the authorized retailer nearest you, please check our dealer locator.

I am an instrument dealer and would love to carry your product!
Send us a request from our Customer Service page and tell us about your store.

How can I get a Washburn Endorsement?
There are very specific requirements to be considered for endorsement. Email an electronic press kit to .

ELECTRONICS

I get a buzzing/humming sound but it goes away when I touch the volume. Is this normal?
Yes. When you touch the strings or bridge on an electric guitar, your body acts as the ground and the circuit will be quieter.

What Are Duncan USM pick-ups?
Duncan USM Pickups are designed by Seymour Duncan's Santa Barbara-based engineers to USM's requirements and are only available on select Washburn and Parker guitars. Currently, Duncan USM pickups are available in two voices, the HB-103 and HB-102. The HB-103 is a high output hum bucker aimed at heavy rock, metal, thrash and punk players. It's an extremely aggressive pickup with powerful coil windings ceramic magnets, but it will maintain string-to-string clarity even under the punishing picking assault heavy music players subject their guitars to gig after gig. More info is available here.

What was the V.C.C. system?
A unique coil tapping system that allows players to incrementally blend between a hum bucking sound and a single coil sound without the hum normally associated with single coils, similar to the concept of a dimmer switch but related to the tone of a guitar. Turn the VCC knob up for a traditional humbucker sound; Turn it down for the character of a single coil. It did not require a preamp or batteries. It was available on select Original Idol models.

MAINTENANCE & TECHNICAL

What is the best way to take care of my acoustic Washburn instrument?
Acoustic guitars are sensitive to humidity and temperature conditions. Excessive dryness, heat and cold will cause severe damage to an acoustic instrument

Excessive dryness will cause an instrument to shrink/contract and crack. For Washburn owners that reside in a dry climate, we recommend storing the instrument in a good quality hard shell case with a small guitar case humidifier. Guitar humidifiers are relatively inexpensive accessories, and can be purchased through any musical instrument shop that deals in acoustic instruments.

Your acoustic guitar is ideally stored in an environment with constant 45-55 % relative humidity, and 72-77 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not expose the instrument to a rapid temperature change, as this may cause the finish and wood to crack.

Do not hang or store your guitar by windows, under direct sunlight, or in your car.

Cracking and warping caused by dryness and excessive temperature exposure are not covered under warranty.

What strings do you use at the factory?

All Washburn instruments ship from the factory with light gauge strings. Current models proudly feature D'Addario strings. A guide for the string gauges we use at the factory is below:

Electric Guitar

Light Gauge
.009 High E
.011 B
.016 G
.024 D
.032 A
.042 Low E

Acoustic Guitar

Light Gauge
.012 High E
.016 B
.024 G
.032 D
.042 A
.053 Low E

The Rover

Extra Light Gauge
.010 High E
.014 B
.023 G
.030 D
.039 A
.047 Low E

Classical Guitar

Normal tension
.028 High E
.0322 B
.0403 G
.029 D
.035 A
.043 Low E

Electric Bass

Light Gauge
.045 G
.065 D
.085 A
.105 A

Acoustic Bass

Light Gauge
.045 G
.065 D
.080 A
.100 A

Mandolin

Light Gauge
.011 High E
.011 High E
.015 A
.015 A
.026 D
.026 D
.036 G
.036 G

Banjo

.009 D
.011 B
.013 G
.020 C
.009 G

 

I need general maintenance on my guitar. Where can I get information?
There are many places on the web that can assist you in set up and maintenance of your instruments. Here are just a few that may be very helpful.

www.frets.com
www.guitar.about.com
www.ultimateguitarpage.com
www.guitarelectronics.com
Guitar Set-up Tutorial.

Most guitar shops also have technicians on hand that are more than capable of general instrument set-up/maintenance.

Can I send my guitar to Washburn for maintenance, repair, or upgrades?
No, the Washburn shop does not perform any aftermarket work. The Washburn shop only performs warranty repairs, (provided there is no factory authorized service center in your region)

Where can I get my Washburn instrument repaired?
If your Washburn requires a warranty repair, we recommend contacting the place of purchase (if your instrument was purchased locally). If your instrument is not under warranty, then we recommend contacting a local instrument repair shop.

How often should I change strings?
Washburn recommends changing strings every 3-4 months, to maintain the best tone and playability. Excessive playing may require more frequent string changing, in the event of breakage or oxidization.

Can I get a wiring diagram?
Most Washburn models use standardized wiring concepts. A great resource for wiring diagrams can be found at guitarelectronics.com.

Washburn has limited references for older models, and unfortunately cannot provide specific wiring diagrams for some older models.

How do I know if my neck needs adjustment?
Generally, if a neck is out of adjustment, string buzz will be more noticeable in either the center of the neck or near the first few frets & open chording area. There are many factors that can be the source of string buzz, but this is a good place to look first.

Truss rod adjustment is generally recommended to only be performed by a qualified repair technician. Minimal tweaking is key to adjusting an instruments neck. Breaking the truss rod, (applying too much force) and/or stripping the truss rod (using an improperly sized Allen wrench, and/or applying too much force) is not considered a manufacturers defect and is not covered under any warranty. Breaking and/or stripping your instruments truss rod will void the warranty.

I broke my neck. Can you fix it or sell me a new neck? Where do I get it fixed?
Washburn does not offer replacement necks at this time. If your neck has cracked due to a non-warranty issue (impact damage, or damage due to improper tuning and/or inappropriate storage of the instrument) we recommend finding a qualified repair technician in your area to fix the existing neck.

WARRANTY

What does my warranty cover?
The Washburn warranty covers against defects in manufacturing for the lifetime of the original purchaser. Please note, that most imperfections or problems attributed to the manufacture of your instrument will generally occur or become apparent early on. If you detect or suspect any problems with your instrument, please contact either the dealer it was purchased from or us as soon as possible. If you are an international customer, please contact your dealer or the Washburn distributor for your country. For a list of our international distributors, see our DEALER LOCATOR.

Tuning machines, hardware and electronics are covered for a period of one year from the point of purchase. Washburn reserves the right to use or offer currently available replacement parts at the time of service request.

A proof of purchase is required for all Warranty service. Damage caused by dropping, scratching, smashing, stage diving, and damage due to improper storage or care of the instrument is not covered under warranty.

Washburn reserves the right to repair or replace the instrument, at our sole discretion. If your specific model is no longer in production, Washburn will offer a currently available similar model as a replacement option.

Where can I obtain warranty service?
If your Washburn instrument was purchased locally and is under warranty, we recommend contacting the dealership it was purchased from. If your instrument cannot be repaired under warranty locally, contact us from our Customer Service page.

A return authorization number is required for any repairs performed at Washburn. To obtain a return authorization number, please contact Washburn at our Customer Service page.

I am a non-US resident and require instrument service or repair.
Please contact the Washburn distributor for your region for all warranty requests.

Instruments not purchased through the Washburn distributor network are not covered under warranty in your region.

OLDER MODELS NOT IN CURRENT PRODUCTION

What is my instrument, and what is it worth?
Washburn can only provide the current MSRP of new instruments currently in production. The current market value of an older instrument is subject to a variety of market conditions. We cannot estimate this type of value for an older instrument.

To identify your Washburn instrument, we recommend visiting our downloads section to view our archive of previous catalogs. If you do not find your instrument there, please email a few clear digital photographs of your instrument, along with the serial number to . Please allow 7 business days for instrument identification requests. Due to limited historical references, Washburn cannot guarantee an instrument identification request.

If your instrument does not have a serial number, the instrument can not be dated or identified.

What year was my instrument manufactured?

Washburn has used many serial number formats over the years, ranging from 4-12 characters long. The year of manufacture can always be deduced from the first few numerical characters in the serial number.

Either the first 2 digits, or the first digit, are typically used to identify the year of manufacture.

For example, 8901827 indicate the instrument was made in 1989, 1988, or 1998. You can confirm the year of manufacture by visiting our guitar archives reference pricelists/ catalogs.

Instruments with serial numbers that have 5 or more characters are from the late 1980's-2000's

Instruments with serial numbers that have 5 characters or less are typically from the 1980's.

Instruments with serial numbers that have 4 characters are from the 1970's and early 1980's.

For instruments produced after 2010, usually the first 4 digits can indicate the year of manufacture.

There is no serial number information or tracking capability for pre-1978 models

If the instrument does not have a serial number, it is likely a factory prototype or sample, and it is impossible to gauge its exact age. We recommend visiting our Guitar Archives and viewing the annual catalogs to find the closest match.

I have a vintage Washburn, (1880's-1978)- what can you tell me about it?
There are no records or references of this early era of Washburn for our customer support staff. We cannot identify or appraise instruments of this early era.

How can I find out if you make a certain guitar anymore?
Only the guitars in our current catalogue and website are still in production.

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