I like this idea. It addresses a myriad of issues along the supply chain from builder to PRS to retailer to customer. If it's true that SEs all go to Stevensville first for inspection and setup as needed, I would argue that a film should be applied at the manufacturer for PRS to remove and inspect. If there's a problem under the film, it's a demerit for Cort or [insert other contractor name]. Accountability. (Though surely there's an accountability protocol now.) PRS fixes it and puts on the final film, which protects it from there down to the end user.I think one of the solutions is, look at how high end (and some low end) cars are shipped! They are covered in sticky film that protects the paint job from being blemished in shipping and at dealer. So that stuff should not come off until the final consumer has received and approved the product. I would argue that PRS should start doing something similar. All finished surfaces are covered with some clear contact paper (static applied, no glues) that peels off. When a dealer gets it, that stuff stays on. They do set up, etc with that contact paper still intact. And I would say it should even be shipped to the customer with that contact paper still intact. Then if the consumer removes it, they have accepted the guitar as being new and without blemishes. If consumer returns it with contact paper removed, the customer takes the hit. Now if they receive the guitar and the contact paper already has scratches, dents and marks on it (and have done an unboxing video) OR after removing the contact paper they find flaws or can even see flaws through the contact paper (once again, video would be paramount here to verify the removal of that paper exposing flaws), then it is all on the dealer INCLUDING SHIPPING IMO! If a dealer receives one with similar contact paper flaws (or flaws visible beneath clear paper), they can contact PRS and tell them something is not right and work it out amongst themselves.
It's bound to be tedious, though - fitting top, back, round of neck, two sides of the headstock (with strings). That sounds like several films, no doubt die-cut around knobs, etc for each model. Then the rim of the guitar is another issue...I suppose a long thin wrap goes from heel around to heel - with holes for strap pins and jack.
Adds some expense too - but if implemented, it's the Safe Spex Protocol, the accountability prophylactic.