Why are PRS Silversky Core backlogged for a year now? Aren't they made in Maryland?

Archie1709

I just like to play
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What that means is that if you want a 'specific' colour - like Roxy Pink for example, and order it from ANY retailer, your Roxy Pink order will be added to the list of Orders for Silver Sky's which would mean that 'your' Roxy Pink SS won't be made until ALL the other orders that came before yours, have been made.

In the meantime, another retailer may of ordered some Roxy Pink SS's months ago and get their stock and maybe not 'pre-sold' all of theirs and then you'll see other stores with theirs all whilst waiting for PRS to get round to your 'specific' order that was added to the list of guitars to be built.

Guitars are built to order - even 'general' stock. When you see PRS at NAMM, they are taking orders from retailers for stock. Then customers go to these retailers and pre-order so once all the retailers stock of Roxy Pink SS are 'pre-sold'', the next customer, you, comes in wanting a Roxy Pink SS so your 'order' has to go on the end of ALL those other orders that were made at and since the guitar was announced (plus all the other guitars they have to make). Your 'specific' guitar order gets added onto the list of orders from retailers all over the world - which currently may well mean waiting a year or so. That doesn't mean that other stores won't get Roxy Pink SS that weren't 'pre-sold' to a customer, one they ordered at NAMM as part of their 'stock' requirements so have it LONG before your ordered guitar is built.

If a Store is low on Custom 24's, they order more (say 5) and then a Customer comes in wanting one in a Specific Colour so they 'order' that, those 5 will get made first because they were ordered first now imagine hundreds of retailers ordering 5-10 guitars for more stock, and then where that single customer order will be on the list - it won't be the 6th Custom 24 made....

PRS is NOT a big company employing 1000's to churn out guitars like Fender or Gibson. They are NOT going to compromise their Quality to get more guitars out the door quicker. Considering they were shutdown for months due to Pandemic condition at a very busy time for guitar sales, they had a LOT of orders to fill when they returned to work, hence such a long wait.
Gotcha. So if I understand you right, if I ordered a Roxy Pink from Guitar Center, and they've been in line along with Sweetwater, Musician's Friend (which is also Guitar Center) etc, folks who ordered from Guitar Center will have to wait until the other retailers are fulfilled (including the small retailers who may have ordered at NAMM last year).

Also, as I temptingly try to compare the availability of Fender and Gibson guitars (and their subsidiary brands), you're saying that PRS in Maryland is a much smaller operation that do not have the same output as Fender and Gibson. Additionally, PRS' operation is slower due to the emphasis they have in quality.

OK, I can understand that.

Question to others who responded (except Mozzi): why so sarcastic and demeaning about your response. Mozzi was able to respond with such dignity and respect. Can't y'all muster the same?
 

Alnus Rubra

Loving nature’s wonders
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I understand your frustration, however people here are very protective of the brand and can react differently.

I attempt to avoid sarcasm. If you read my replies, they make reference to the cost of raw materials and fuel costs in the UK. A classic de-rail on my part for which I apologise.

The comment about a “marketing scheme” is most likely what caused others here to react in the way they did.

It takes a month to make a stable neck for a PRS (American made) guitar. It’s on record, that they won’t compromise on this, along with lots of other parts of their build. Hence the timescale and delays. QC is a big part of the company mantra, along with preparation of materials and so many other things.
 

Lola

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I had to wait a year for mine and it wasn’t even a special order. The best thing you can do is not question it but take on an attitude of great patience with a touch of reverence for the brand and how they are trying to cope with COVID setbacks. This is out of your control! Why stress about it?
 

RC Mike

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Mar 2, 2020
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The other option is to just buy one as they become available. Dealers order guitars that they don’t have customer commitments for. They know they’re going to sell X-number of y-model. That’s how you see new PRS guitars at dealers that are available to buy. Place an order that can be cancelled, then watch for stock at various dealers or on Reverb. Worse case, you’ll have the guitar when your order gets built. Best case, you’ll have one a short while from now and can cancel the other order.
 

dmatthews

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Gotcha. So if I understand you right, if I ordered a Roxy Pink from Guitar Center, and they've been in line along with Sweetwater, Musician's Friend (which is also Guitar Center) etc, folks who ordered from Guitar Center will have to wait until the other retailers are fulfilled (including the small retailers who may have ordered at NAMM last year).

Also, as I temptingly try to compare the availability of Fender and Gibson guitars (and their subsidiary brands), you're saying that PRS in Maryland is a much smaller operation that do not have the same output as Fender and Gibson. Additionally, PRS' operation is slower due to the emphasis they have in quality.

OK, I can understand that.

Question to others who responded (except Mozzi): why so sarcastic and demeaning about your response. Mozzi was able to respond with such dignity and respect. Can't y'all muster the same?
 

bodia

Authorities said.....best leave it.....unsolved
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Also, as I temptingly try to compare the availability of Fender and Gibson guitars (and their subsidiary brands), you're saying that PRS in Maryland is a much smaller operation that do not have the same output as Fender and Gibson. Additionally, PRS' operation is slower due to the emphasis they have in quality.
There are about 350 total employees at the Maryland location. Keep in mind, not all of them build guitars (Sales, HR, Cust Ser, etc).
 

Rod/

Vibrato & String Bender
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You may be right. Biggest exporter of gold is Switzerland, just checked.

Anyone into gold coated aluminium strings? Nickel coated steel strings may not be a thing soon ;)
I’ve noticed that my string supplier Strings and Beyond has had to raise their prices on many of there string lines, most noticeably Ernie Ball……
 

shinksma

What? I get a title?
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Question to others who responded (except Mozzi): why so sarcastic and demeaning about your response. Mozzi was able to respond with such dignity and respect. Can't y'all muster the same?
Well, your first post contained a glaring inaccuracy (no-one has core Silver Sky guitars in stock, none since 2021), and therefore was deemed pejorative from the get-go. "...somehow ALL guitar stores are out of stock of your Silver Sky since last year." When you come out swinging like that, be prepared for a counter punch.

As noted by others, there are lots of new core SSs available. Searching on Reverb, there are 82 results for "Sky" and PRS brand shipping from the US to the US, with a price at or above $1500 (to filter out all the SE versions). A handful are "Pre-order", and those all appear to be the Roxy Pink type (I clicked on quite a few of the other colors and didn't find any pre-orders, but I'm not going to say they aren't there), and all Roxy Pinks appear to be pre-orders only.

So if you want a Roxy Pink, yes, it looks like you'll have to wait, or see if one pops up on the used market.

So for other colors, there are literally dozens and dozens to choose from. Is there one at your local GC? I have no idea. GC/Musician's Friend is not exactly high on the PRS friend-list, I suspect, after the great selloff liquidation of 2014-ish. So maybe they don't get them much.

Roxy Pink is the latest color, AFAIK, so it is the rarest - announced last July. And since PRS couldn't predict how many of the new color will sell, I am sure they polled trusted dealers for an initial order book. They made a bunch for availability upon release (IIRC), but the rest might have to be made in order of pre-order status, along with all the other Silver Skys being made. And all the other guitar models they make there. PRS can only make so many guitars with so much staff and production resources. I've had a PRS on order now for almost two years. Fortunately I have other PRSi to play, and this is a very specific order (Wood Library run), so I know I have to wait.
 

dogrocketp

I drank the PRS kool aid, and it was tasty!
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Archie,
Both you and I live in a very privileged area, Montgomery County, Maryland. As you’re seeing, prices on everything are going up. In spite of the media, one man is not responsible and one man cannot fix it. THIS IS WORLDWIDE. In the twenties, similar conditions (worldwide depression) led to political aggression and eventually WW2. Let’s hope we’ve all learned from our past mistakes, although current military conflict would suggest otherwise. I don’t mean to be a downer, but keep your eyes open. The obviousness of the answer to your opening salvo is why you got your response. Also, periodically, trolls pop up and try to denigrate PRS. We think a couple of them were Henry J and his minions.
 

Lordparquad

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Jun 14, 2022
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So glad I came to this thread and checked reverb, there is now one less Roxy pink for sale lol
 

dmatthews

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Thanks. It’s the first guitar I’ve ever bought where I haven’t been able to put hands on a similar one first. I have high confidence though
Although I bought mine used in person, I played it for maybe 30 seconds before I paid and ran like a bandit.
No regrets after 3 or so years. It has many many hours on it and has never fallen out of rotation.
Enjoy....
 

LSchefman

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Often overlooked is the fact that COVID hospitalizations by age group are pretty evenly distributed. While it's true that deaths predominate among older folks, there are currently as many 18-49 age group hospitalizations as those over 65. Add in the 50-65 age group and you have even more.

Throw in the people who stay home sick for several days but aren't hospitalized, and you have a pretty good-sized slice of working people whose absence has done a lot to screw up the supply chain.

Also, COVID has killed over 210,000 people under the age of 65 in the US. Dead people can't work (as far as we know...).

Maybe they can’t keep employees. Been pretty hard to compete against the gubmint payment plans the last few years

I realize you were half-joking, but it'll be interesting to see whether that's in fact true, when the statistics are analyzed. I have my doubts.

There have also been a ton of working mothers who were stuck at home, home-schooling their kids. That's a lot of lost productivity, and several I know personally decided to bite the bullet, quit their jobs, and just work part-time (if at all).
 
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shinksma

What? I get a title?
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Maybe they can’t keep employees. Been pretty hard to compete against the gubmint payment plans the last few years
I realize you were half-joking, but it'll be interesting to see whether that's in fact true, when the statistics are analyzed. I have my doubts.
This can be a huge political rabbit hole, but I will offer these thoughts:

Undoubtedly there are people who found it easier to accept the "handouts" for the "free money" value vs finding work (either old job or a new one). But I don't think there are millions in this category. And the folks who do take that easy money might not be the best skilled workforce anyway - I assume the vast majority of jobs at PRS involve some level of skill, either through training or experience, and some combo of inherent talent. Or maybe I'm naïve.

I also suspect some people found that after losing their jobs (and maybe not even getting much in the way of handouts) that their quality of life didn't change, or perhaps improved, overall - the expenses and time associated with working were replaced by not having to spend on daycare, transportation, etc, combined with maybe they experienced an increase in general happiness level. Especially easy to transition if they have a working spouse.

And thirdly, I suspect some people decided to retire a bit early. So they just never re-entered the workforce.

And as a result, with fewer people in the available workforce, there is less desire to accept a lower-quality job. A minor glut in a workforce suppresses hourly rates easily ("Oh, you don't want to do that job for $8/hr? That's OK, I can find someone else hungrier."), whereas a minor drought in a workforce means many people have the opportunity to look around for something better, and because there aren't as many candidates, employers will pay more to attract and keep "talent". And turnover is an expensive hidden cost, so a smart employer includes that in their cost of keeping an employee at a higher salary vs replacement talent at a lower salary (you hope).

So, for example: If PRS pays what would normally be a competitive ("livable", "fair", whatever term you like) wage for the skilled labor they employ, then the should be able to maintain a stable workforce - but only if there is a suitably available local workforce. If Telsa starts building guitars in Texas and pays triple the normal salary, there might be a huge migration of the workforce from MD to TX, draining MD of a skilled workforce in building guitars. So even if PRS doubles their normal "reasonable" wage they might not be able to attract enough qualified personnel. Overpaying under-skilled workers generates problems for everyone (even the employee, who can feel frustrated at not being able to perform).
 

LSchefman

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This can be a huge political rabbit hole, but I will offer these thoughts:

Undoubtedly there are people who found it easier to accept the "handouts" for the "free money" value vs finding work (either old job or a new one). But I don't think there are millions in this category. And the folks who do take that easy money might not be the best skilled workforce anyway - I assume the vast majority of jobs at PRS involve some level of skill, either through training or experience, and some combo of inherent talent. Or maybe I'm naïve.

I also suspect some people found that after losing their jobs (and maybe not even getting much in the way of handouts) that their quality of life didn't change, or perhaps improved, overall - the expenses and time associated with working were replaced by not having to spend on daycare, transportation, etc, combined with maybe they experienced an increase in general happiness level. Especially easy to transition if they have a working spouse.

And thirdly, I suspect some people decided to retire a bit early. So they just never re-entered the workforce.

And as a result, with fewer people in the available workforce, there is less desire to accept a lower-quality job. A minor glut in a workforce suppresses hourly rates easily ("Oh, you don't want to do that job for $8/hr? That's OK, I can find someone else hungrier."), whereas a minor drought in a workforce means many people have the opportunity to look around for something better, and because there aren't as many candidates, employers will pay more to attract and keep "talent". And turnover is an expensive hidden cost, so a smart employer includes that in their cost of keeping an employee at a higher salary vs replacement talent at a lower salary (you hope).

So, for example: If PRS pays what would normally be a competitive ("livable", "fair", whatever term you like) wage for the skilled labor they employ, then the should be able to maintain a stable workforce - but only if there is a suitably available local workforce. If Telsa starts building guitars in Texas and pays triple the normal salary, there might be a huge migration of the workforce from MD to TX, draining MD of a skilled workforce in building guitars. So even if PRS doubles their normal "reasonable" wage they might not be able to attract enough qualified personnel. Overpaying under-skilled workers generates problems for everyone (even the employee, who can feel frustrated at not being able to perform).
These are really good points.

My aim in my post (above) isn't at all political. I think until the topic is seriously studied down the road, we can only guess at whatever the motivating factors have been.

One thing I didn't mention in my post is the extent to which problems in foreign companies that supply parts, raw materials and labor for subassemblies have been affected.

One small example among many: One of the industries in Ukraine and Russia that has been greatly affected by the war is the production of automotive wiring looms that were previously supplied to automakers all over the world.
 
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