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Guitars Getting Confiscated

posted Apr 16, 2014 16:03:22 by MichaelWamback
Wanted to post this as a sticky topic for now.

One of our members recently had their Chibson confiscated by Customs in New York. A second member had a Chibson bounce from Chicago to LA Customs, which is also a bit unusual.

While these may be isolated incidents, they may also be the beginning of a more vigorous crackdown on the importation of counterfeit goods by US Customs.

We will update this topic as new information becomes available. But you may wish to consider this risk when placing an order for a replica guitar if you live in the United States and discuss the possibility of the guitar getting confiscated with the seller when you purchase. In particular, you may wish to have them specify what their policy is if your guitar does end up getting confiscated. In most cases, sellers have offered a full refund, or to make and ship a new guitar.

There should be no risk of confiscation if you have ordered a guitar with an altered headstock shape and your own logo. This will apply only to guitars that break trademark laws.
[Last edited Apr 19, 2014 17:02:53]
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82 replies
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HtesJoseph said Apr 17, 2014 16:53:34
My geuss Is if this begins to be common place, them crafty little buggers will find a way aeound it
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NickJohnson said Apr 17, 2014 17:50:41
My guitar was not ordered with a case.
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adam williams said Apr 17, 2014 19:16:10
This had me thinking i had to pay customs on 2 guitars without a case and the guitar with a case went straight through with no charges, maybe it is just a coincidence.
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GsxJones said Apr 17, 2014 22:23:16
Do you think one of the problems could be that the seller's value the guitar's at a mega low price,so custom's dont get a cut? Maybe if custom's got their back hander they'd be happy?
This really has me saddened. Ive just discovered the chinese guitar market. Tonight Ive been looking (shock horror)at buying guitar's from Japan. They are more expensive,but quality wise tend to need nothing. Im going to sit and watch things on here before I take the plunge and buy anything again.
Ive been wanting to get a nice little collection going,but I dont know if it will happen now?
******* customs!!! lol.
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NickJohnson said Apr 18, 2014 02:12:33
I think you should edit the original post, my guitar was a PRS that was seized in New York.
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Buddhapickups said Apr 18, 2014 04:11:35
Expect to receive some letters in the mail too.
Just make sure you ignore them, don't respond.

This sucks by the way, if NY customs is going to start confiscating as well. I had a few more guitars from aliexpress I wanted to get...I suppose getting them with a different logo might be a better solution anyway.
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SteveTebble said Apr 18, 2014 09:33:01
I like the idea someone suggested, which is asking the seller to shoot a coat of black over the logo so that it looks like a plain headstock, and you can then sand it off and polish it up later.

As I said in the other thread though, I'd be worried that the X-ray might be able to detect the inlay under the paint.
God give me patience ... but I want it NOW!!
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kaarel804 said Apr 18, 2014 11:29:45
Michael, I know that your REG double neck came inside its case. Did they also tell you that they won't be taking charge if something happens during shipping them together? It would be quite stupid to ship them separately I think :)
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TomS. said Apr 18, 2014 14:03:07
To those who have had their guitars confiscated:
Was this your first order, or have you purchased several guitars before? I am wondering whether the people who have had their items seized appear as dealers to customs.
This is my Chibson. There are many like it, but this one is mine.
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ChibsonsandMore said Apr 18, 2014 14:08:23
I had one caught last year in Chicago, and it was my only one to ever pass through Chicago.

I had got two guitars before that but they came through New York. I've since ordered a few more and they came through New York without a problem (haven't had any delivered in 2014 yet).
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littlericky said Apr 18, 2014 14:12:12
NY Customs has my guitar.
2014-04-14 17:25:00 CHANGLE Posting
2014-04-14 18:48:29 CHANGLE Despatch from Sorting Center
2014-04-14 21:17:25 WEIFANG Arrival at Sorting Center
2014-04-14 21:32:51 WEIFANG Despatch from Sorting Center
2014-04-15 15:31:50 JINAN Arrival at Sorting Center
2014-04-15 15:35:05 JINAN Despatch from Sorting Center
2014-04-16 19:42:41 BEIJING Arrival at Sorting Center
2014-04-16 22:06:17 BEIJING Despatch from Sorting Center
2014-04-18 03:16:00 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA NEW YORK Arrival at Sorting Center
2014-04-18 03:17:00 UNITED STATES OF AMERICA NEW YORK Handed over to Customs


I'll keep you all posted
This package had my name on it but was shipped to a different address
[Last edited Apr 18, 2014 14:21:40]
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ChibsonsandMore said Apr 18, 2014 14:24:07
That's pretty average. Looks like they just got it early AM this morning. I've had one take five days to get through NY customs but they never opened it. The fastest was through in like ten minutes.

EDIT: Just loked at that shipping time. Wow, that was quick from Beijing to NYC.
[Last edited Apr 18, 2014 14:31:41]
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kungfoo222 said Apr 18, 2014 16:21:55
Mine that was confiscated was shipped in a case. It was my first order. I think the catch is that Customs knows what is in a package that is approximately 4 to 5 feet in length, triangular shaped, and wrapped in yellow packing wrap. It ain't exactly rocket science. I am conviced that a rectangular box that was stapled shut would've went right through customs. AliExpress just sent me a request for documentation proving that the guitar was indeed confiscated. They want it within 7 days, and I haven't received anything other than being told by SF-Express Shipping that I would not be receiveing it because it was confisctaed for "Trademark Violations". I am sure that the seller already knows this as he initiated the shipment. I am curious to see how AliExpress reacts when they realize that Visa has recouped my money already.
[Last edited Apr 18, 2014 18:01:28]
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zoso666 said Apr 19, 2014 09:58:43
Uk seizures?
Just had an email from Cathy at oem,making me an es295 and said she has heard many rumors of UK sezuires of Gibson logo guitars?
She wants to paint black lacquer over headstock ,i said there are no cases yet,unless anyone knows of anything?
I have told her to proceed as normal as it seems USA is the targeted area?
Any news?
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GrandSpector said Apr 19, 2014 10:00:50
what does "black lacquer" mean, will it have to be sanded off or is some rubbing alcohol enough?
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