I have had my guitars setup in the past by one guy. He gets them close but not exactly as I want them. I'm certainly satisfied with his work. Hey, he can't read my mind..
After many hours of learning what effects what I found my way. I do my own now.
no one knows more about what I like than me.
yes, build them, set them up, fix them....
the last 2 guitars that i took to the "local professional" and paid around $30 each time to do some rewire work---both of those guitars have bad wiring problems now, and it's not like i'm beating my guitar etc. so my trust level in the "local professionals" is suspect....
all the wiring i've done has been fine, no problems....so after that little lesson, figured it's time to do things myself.....
I don't do fret work, but I do everything else. I learned both from a fantastic luthier who relocated to my area late in his life and would let me sit by his bench while he worked, and various books. I think I COULD do frets, but I don't have enough patience.
I'll do anything that doesn't involve pretty finish work or fret and nut work. I learned early in life that one thing I'm not is a carpenter. Another thing I'm not is neat. But on down to assembling a partscaster (I will go so far as to drill some holes and drive some screws but that's about the extent of my carpententry skills), much standard stuff I'll do myself.
But I won't let anyone else do my setup work...and I'll do electronic work of just about any sort on guitars, amps, pedals, whatever. I don't see why every guitarist doesn't do his or her own setup, intonation, action and truss rod adjustments at the very least. First of all no one can get your guitar set up precisely to your liking as well as you can for yourself with the guitar in your own hands. Second of all, it's easy. Third, it can save you so much time and money.
I got tired of paying someone else to do something I could easily learn to do, and that I actually enjoy doing. I started with a few pawnshop mutts that I could inflict my questionable skills upon and proceeded from there. I do it all now - from working on all the electronics, changing pickups, tuners, and straplocks, to making my own nuts, staining and painting guitar bodies, leveling and crowning frets, and even refretting entire necks. I enjoy tweaking all my guitars to my exact specifications and I don't have to hand over any cash to another person who might not give the kind of care that I do with my own axes.
I even do some work for friends as a favour but rarely charge for my work as I don't want to make a living out of it.
Wow, lotsa guys here that do it all, I'm impressed. I do everything but fret work. All my guitars have excellent frets when I get them or I have them refretted right away so there's never really any need for me to do anything. I do occaisionally polish the frets with 0000 steel wool. Other than that, I do all the work on my guitars.