An open letter to Hipshot, shame on you

Disclosure, this is a long post. For the people interested I appreciate the time you take to read this post. I hope it helps with your next purchase in the future.

Dear Hipshot,

I placed an order of an HB7 gold lollipop for my build back in 4/3/202 from BestBassGear. I thought it would be a fun build in gold theme. Three days later I received an email saying BBG only have one out of 4 for my purchase and the item was on back ordered, and asked me if I wanted to wait. I replied I’d wait.

A few weeks later, I call you guys(Hipshot) asking about it, to my delight, you said you have then in stock sitting on the shelf and would be glad to ship it out to BBG on their next order maybe in a couple weeks or so. I asked you since you have them in stock should I just buy directly from you. You encouraged me not to do that because I already ordered from your authorized dealer and you would not be able to match the small savings offered by your dealer. I said sure I’d wait.

A few more weeks passed now it’s the beginning of May, I called again following up on the status of my order. I was told not only you have already sent more products to BBG and my order was not included, you still have it on the shelf in stock, and gave me a phone version of a shoulder shrugged. I was told maybe next time.

A few more weeks later middle of May. I called you again and yes I was also confirmed that you have the item in stock and on the shelf and not yet shipped to BBG for one reason or another and there’s nothing you can do for me until it’s shipped. I also sent out an email around the same time asking about the status of this order it’s been over 3 weeks and I have not hear back from both you and BBG.

Please acknowledge this. You are not an essential components company. If you shut down tomorrow, life goes on.

In fact you are in the worst position, luxury products, it’s what we call, LIFO, last in, first out. When the economy tank you are the first industry people stop spending on and usually the last group before they start spending on you again. Needless to say most venders especially moms and pops stores give exceptional services.

I know 2019 has been good for the musical instruments and components industry but nothing compared to the 2020 lockdown. Your industry just exploded, however at some point all good things must end. When that happens you need your loyal customers to keep your business in the green.

That brings us back to today. I gave up. I just finished 2 builds with Hipshot products for the last time. I just sent an email to BBG canceling my Hipshot order. It’s going on the 11th week since I placed the order that you have in stock and know that a customer has been waiting for them. By the second call, someone there should be jumping up and down trying to get the item to the waiting customer, let alone third call and the opposite reaction happed.

Since March of 2020, I spent thousands on Hipshot alone upgrading my basses and guitars, exaggerated? Well you check put some of the pictures I posted here. Just on my basses. I’m, was a fanboi waving the flag. Now it would be the opposite. It’s sad.

There are several companies that offer what you offer some are bigger some are a lot smaller I’ll just move on. I’ll end with this. Last year on one of my build, I email Schaller asking the color (rhuthenium) option, the very next day I received and email back from the owner/president, Dr. Lars Bünning, explaining what’s available and even offered if I needed some of my parts needs to be in the same color he could help make it happen for me. Schaller is not a small company it definitely made a great impression on me.

You should do better training in the future or you’d start losing crazy customers like myself one by one.


Albert C


I am 1000% with you on this @Al1885.

I totally understand the state of delays due to covid right now, but that is not what you (or I) are experiencing.

When doing my blackout bass, I got the same answer regarding black drop D tuners - no one had them in stock, we have them, but don’t order from us.
They offer sales on their site but then tell you not to order them, why bother than.
Why are you not working with your distributors to sell every last stinking bit of metal you can make?

Just this past two weeks I have had two more issues with Hipshot on a gold build…
First, one tuner bought from BBG was missing the ferrule and screws. They did agree to send out today, will see how long it takes.

Second, they changed over their design of the tuners to the more flexible reverse direction bushing end. OK, great, but when you can’t find 4 at any one place, and order 2 from 2 different places, make sure your distributors are noting ‘old style vs. new’, or this is the result.
Quality control at it’s best.

So again today Hipshot did the right thing and offered to replace them, however…no idea when they would be making any. All depends on orders, and gold is not ordered as much from their distributors, so could be months. I have zero faith in them remembering to send me the tuners, so will be calling every 2 weeks until they get sick of me and make them.

The fix is quite easy as I see it…better comms with your distributors, get the products out to them for sale in a better way (drop ship if you have to, makes sense to me) or you will lose customers forever.

I won’t go through all this mess again either @Al1885.
Too much nonsense to put up with.


I just sent out the email scrapping the build(well components) on my multi scale bass. Originally, it’s set to use Hipshot tuners and single bridge, now I’ll find another brand to complete that project.

What they don’t realize is the fact that it’s all about vanity. It has very little to do with performance increase. The company is counting on your impulse to buy components to make the build look different some would even say cool.

Then much would have to be said about the urgency to get the products in customer’s hand to complete the build and encourage more impulse buy. It’s business 101, it cost more to attract new customers than retaining the one you have. They fail to see this. They don’t practice this and it’s not in their company’s DNA. Which is critical.

They are not top quality build nor affordable. They don’t offer memorable unboxing experience. What they have going for them is the choice of color and different convenient fit to popular models. They should be beating great customer service in to every point of customer contact.

@John_E you and I are not the first who experience this terrible practice. Upon speaking to a few of my friends when talking about the upgrades a few rolled their eyes and say “Hipshot oh boy!” So the ball already started rolling.


As a follow up, below is what just messaged me. What amazing customer service and picking up where Hipshot left off.

Good news is they just saved me months of waiting, and they might not have even been the ones that sent the old style tuners to begin with.

+1 bestbassgear

John, the deal is that the ones with the black adjustments are the newer ones…that black adjustment is the new way of switching them from bass to treble side,

and visa versa…we have some treble side in stock here, I am having shipping switch them to bass side for you, and are shipping them out along with

the missing packet of bushing and screws from the previous order…we had it in our bin.

The tracking number is going to be 9405511108203826178298

and is coming out priority mail…should be in USPS hands tomorrow morning, hopefully you will have them in a couple days.

Hope this solves your problem, just want you to be made hole on this.



Hey guys,
I know this place is a long way from you but when i pimp my basses these guys are really great to deal with.
Cheers Brian


Thanks @TNKA36. I’ll definitely check them out. I hope shipping is not gonna be an issue.


I would check with them, they are very prompt with their response.
Hope they are able to get it sorted for you,
Cheer Brian


Thanks Brian!
And free shipping worldwide over $80!!!
Great resource to know


That a bummer, guys! Sucks waiting for gear to show up.
My lady ordered me a hipshot bridge for my T-bird, right from Hipshot for my B-day a few weeks back. She had some shipping issues as well and when it did show up, I opened it up to find it was chrome not black. I called and got a return authorization to send it back and have it replaced with black. Had the replacement in my hands in a few days. A little bit of a run around, but they sorted me out once I spoke to them.
P.S. Love the new bridge. Way easier to set up and wiped out the little bit of neck dive it had.


LOVE their products.
Hoping covid issues are ony the root cause and they figure out how to recover properly.


@John_E are you getting new tuners for your ESP?

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No, not yet anyway.
They don’t annoy me that much to go spend the $ and try to find 4 with all this nonsense going on right now.

Busy with all that glitters…(coming soon)…


So the Saga continues, I asked for my order to be canceled on Monday due to lack of communication. Apparently, it would be delivered to me today.

I’m 100% sure it’s not going on any of my basses, I’m done with Hipshot. Most likely put on a build and sell it.


Sometimes it’s just a case of bad management. Not hiring new people while the workload is getting out of control. Working 80+ hours a week and not getting paid for overtime is a real buzzkill and if this going on for months your employees will eventually get sick or leave which makes it worse for the others. Not saying this is the case with Hipshot but I have seen some companies killing themselves because the board/management think everything is fine. Sometimes people aren’t qualified to lead a company or they struggle to get new people. It’s a shame when that happens.


I have seen the same thing @Paul, and I agree that good management is critical to any company’s success!

When the higher-ups think everything is OK, it’s often because lower managers are telling them what they think they want to hear . . . :roll_eyes:

Glad I’m retired today.



@Paul and @Jazzbass19 , 1000% correct and I agree.

This whole situation felt like the management team were in over their heads. The fail to communicate to their sub team driving home the point that customers still comes first.

Worse, they forgot that they could have lied. It’s acceptable even encourage to lie in this industry and several others to keep customers happy or at least not pissing them off. If they told me hey we are trying to get everything out as soon as we can but Covid-19 happens, hey I’m cool. They didn’t. They said they had it and made me wait 2 months for it. That’s not cool.


Jim at Best Bass Gear (one more plug for how accommodating he has been and how cool he is) sent another note to me.
He told me he knows the hipshot guys well and they have been hit hard by Covid and the huge increase in people modding their stuff as the supply chain dwindles.
He cited supply chain issues as well as having to constantly shut down for Covid cases etc.

Although I do feel for businesses, I will say that this does reflect back to management. Covid protocol management is tricky business. My company took very conservative stances but we have had our labs open almost the entire time with zero cases causing any shutdowns at work do to cross exposure.

But all that aside, the real issue here is the management practices.
There is a simple fix to the Hipshot problem that @Al1885 and I have seen over the past weeks/months. Drop ship of orders. If Hipshot (at least during these times) would drop ship for their distributors Al would have already had his parts.

The other issue is just plain stoopid. I was shopping for gold tuners and had a hard time finding ‘bass side’ tuners. Treble side tuners turn the other way. There were LOADS of treble side tuners in stock all over the place, bass side I had to get 2 from BBG and 2 from the UK!
Turns out, the tuners now have a feature where you can reverse them and therefore a bass side becomes a treble side with the turn of a screwdriver. This is not advertised anywhere!!
Would have saved @Al1885 and I a lot of trouble if Hipshot actually marketed this properly. Again, this is a management issue.

Jim at BBG also stated they are a small business and struggling via Covid. They are the worldwide leader in replacement parts for tuners and bridges, but they are not managed as such.

These are my basic issues with them.


I hate to stray off topic, but this is a good place for me to interject his question…
Since we have now established that Hipshot sucks, what tuner would y’all recommend for when I decide to change tuners on my ESP?

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@PamPurrs my other ESP has Grover tuners and I think they are great. Not sure about styles they make. Haven’t researched.

Only reason I know this is I was playing last night and it tuned really easily and I took a peek at what they were.

Gotoh seem to be the other bigger brand. Not sure if any are direct swap outs (no hole drilling).

Now you have me wondering. Hahahaha


@John_E Who doesn’t like?!