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Beware Turner Basses.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Mojo-Man, Jan 31, 2006.

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  1. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003
    What to do. when manufacter does not stand behind product?
    I write this letter out of frustration!

    To make long story short.
    I originaly ordered a Electroline Bass from Ric Turner.
    This was custom bass, I paid for bass in full.
    I did not receive the bass I ordered.
    Last March,2005 Ric said he would make things right,and make me second bass.
    It would be four months to complete.
    In Aug, of 2005. After numerous, e-mail and phone calls, I could not again get my bass.
    Ric said he changed his e-mail service. I belive this to be true.
    But, Turner Guitars made no attempt to contact me.
    They had my e-mail, phone, and home address.
    Eight days ago, I was on Vintage Bass Trading Co. forums.
    Ric Turner was online.
    I again asked where my bass was?
    Left my home e-mail, so he could contact me.
    He said,on the forum, he would make thing right, again.
    And left his e-mail adderss.
    He never tried contacting me, at my address.
    I've sent Ric, three or four e-mail.
    None of my e-mails, have returned unsent to me.
    I can only assume, he has got them.
    I know Ric, is and inovator, in the bass field.
    But this can't be customer service?????
    It has been over a year.
    What should I do????
    I know Ric, makes a great product, but if he is not a man of his word. And does not stand behind his product, maybe us, the buying public should look else where???
  2. lefty007


    Jan 19, 2004
    Miami, FL
    That is the way it goes with Rick Tuner, my man. I went through the same thing, and even worst.

    Bought an Electroline, the magnetic pickup stopped working after 1 month of purchase. It took him 18 months -that is, 1 year and 6 months- to get the bass fixed. (The pickup is propietary; only Rick himself knows how to make or fix these pickups.)

    No kidding.

    The gammut of excuses ran from: "... we are too busy getting ready for NAMM," or "...I just received a shipment of guitars from Lindsay Buckingham and we need to get those out ASAP," or half the time, they would simply not reply to phone messages or e-mails, for weeks.

    They are nice people though, but for some inexplicable reason they can't be up front with customers and tell everybody they are running 2 years behind.
  3. Tony G

    Tony G

    Jan 20, 2006
    ouch... that sucks guys.
  4. Smallequestrian

    Smallequestrian Rock and/or Roll

    Jul 6, 2004
    Chicago, IL
    Beta Tester: Source Audio
    Not that that is excuseable, but have you tried calling? It seems a lot of these "old school" Luthiers are not very good with email and I would try a slightly more direct approach.
  5. dunamis


    Aug 2, 2004
    I feel ya dog. That's just wrong! I don't care how long the guy's been around, who he's built instruments for, how famous he is, or how good his product is-- that's just wrong.:scowl:

    I don't know why but it seems that luthiers don't feel like customer service (or even common courtesy) apply to them. In a recent thread, there were attempts to defend this kind of thing, and I have to say, I just don't think it's defensible. (Here' a link to the thread: http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=222494. My situation isn't nearly as bad as yours!)

    I'm in business too, and we don't always meet deadlines. In those cases it is absolutely the most important thing to communicate with the customer. The worst thing you can do is stop communicating. We find that bad news is better than no news. At least then the customer knows what to expect.

    I'm sorry you're going through that, and my apology to luthiers who *do* practice good service (I'm sure there are many!).


  6. dunamis


    Aug 2, 2004
    I'm sorry, but I guess I didn't make any useful suggestion in my last post, so here it is:

    Start calling regularly (I might suggest once a week). If you use a calendar system of some sort, put it on there so you won't forget.

    Be polite and non-confrontational, but call every week like clock work. If you get a machine, leave a message, and then try back once (or even twice) a day until you get a return call.

    Again, be polite! I know it's frustrating, but what you want is the guy to make your project a priority. Getting side-ways with him is not a good way to that.

    Make sure you ask what the status is (ie: what's done and what needs to be done next) and try to get a date when it will be complete (or at least when the next step will be complete). Make notes-- write down the status and dates-- and read them back before you finish the conversation. Something like "OK, here's what I've got. You should have the pickups mounted and wired by next Friday. Is that correct?". Get him to say "yes" or something like it.

    If he uses e-mail, write to him as soon as you hang up the phone. Thank him for his time in discussing the project with you and restate the status and dates. Also say that you'll be following up.

    Keep this up. Don't stop and *don't* get frustrated and angry. Always be polite and try to get committments (even if you feel that those commitments mean nothing to him).

    Keep at it until he finally does the work just to get you off his back.

    Sound like a lot of work? Well, given that he has your money and you want your bass, it may be necessary.

    Let me say it again-- YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE TO ANY OF THIS AND HE IS WRONG! But, you may have to resort to it just to get the thing over with. It's a shame, but there it is.

    Peace and good luck,

  7. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    did you go through a dealer or direct?
  8. I once needed some little screws for an Electroline. Never got a response to emails either. Not sure what was going on there, but I took it as "can't be bothered". :eyebrow: Whatever. I got screws from the hardware store, sold the bass, which never impressed me in the first place.

    On the surface, it sounds like some of you guys are paying good money for the priveledge of being blown off. Sad to hear.
  9. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    Sorry to hear that Mojo-Man. Your story tops mine easily, but just so you don't feel like you're the only one...

    I had a rough time with the Turner shop as well. I bought an Electroline from a TBer in early November. The bass was at the Turner shop for a setup (incl. board planing) since June, but the seller was given the impression that the bass would be ready in a week or so. After repeated regular phone calls and emails from me and the seller, I finally got the bass earlier this month. That's right...June to January for a setup.

    I did request a stacked tone pot (piezo/magnetic) which probably added a couple hours work. Of course, I didn't get the stacked pot...I got a switch which I think is a high-pass filter for the piezo (and an off switch) and overall tone. Works fine, but was not what I requested...

    I've really liked this bass once I received it (it feels and sounds amazing and is on par with my Ritter yet offers a completely different flavor), but I have thought about selling it just because of the bad feeling the experience gave me. They did do great work on the bass, but the lack of communication was rude and unprofessional IMO.

    Hope you can get this resolved.

  10. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003
    Ya, Tried calling by phone.
    They said Ric was out.
    Ric, himself, said to e-mail him.
    No responce.
  11. Mojo-Man

    Mojo-Man Supporting Member

    Feb 11, 2003
  12. yikes,
    Ric is on TB in the luthiers forum, and i remember starting some kinda thread there, and it evolved into what it takes to be called a "luthier". i remember a few people (and mainly ric) having a heated argument over that...that was my first impression of ric, and it wasn't so hot...but he must be doing something right, as he has been in business for quite a while!
  13. That thread was the exact place I found out that I wasn't a "luthier".

    Been sleepin' better ever since.:D
  14. Dave Hill

    Dave Hill Supporting Member

    Jan 9, 2005
    Atlanta, GA
    Thanks for sharing this with all of us. That is one thing you can do that will have results.
  15. richnota

    richnota Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2005
    Santa Cruz
    Im a big fan of the basses (note my icon), but I think they're a mess on responsiveness. If you sell direct, your responsibility is to respond to your customers. No excuses. Maybe they should stick to dealers.

    Mojo, have you also tried contacting Barry Pearlman, Turner's sales manager. In my opinion he's the one who should be helping your case.

    Hope it works out.

  16. awesome basses.. but anyone with that bad service is worth boycotting even if his basses are good..
  17. amistybleu


    Jan 15, 2006
    Thornton, CO
    Thanks for the wake up call, I'll never even consider buying from this guy. If we keep posting and keeping this thread on top we can let this guy know his business practice is unacceptable:rollno: and that it is going to spread across the WWW.

    I'm supportin ya brother
  18. PB+J


    Mar 9, 2000
    arlington va
    I'm sorry to hear this--I had a Tuner Ren and they were very resposnive when I requested the strap extension thingie.

    Rick Turner is probably the single most important guy in the history of Electric bass lutherie after Leo fender. He pioneered active electronics and fancy wood neck-thru's at alembic, he was a pioneer with piezos and semi-acoustics, and with carbon fiber/graphite. He's a really innovative luthier--he made this brilliant guitar design with a movable neck and a graphite rod buttress. Unique and elegant. He'sgennerous in sharing his knowledge and experience

    I guess he's a lousy businessman, and I'm sorry to see this.
  19. it sounds to me like Mr. Turner is probably being pulled into to many directions at one time.

    I agree totally with the poster who said to try his sales manager.

    the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result...contact the sales manager

    I'm sure that his intentions are honorable, he's just not able to deliver in the service department...and that's ok...as long as SOMEONE at Turner is.
  20. dunamis


    Aug 2, 2004
    A victim of his own success or simply arrogant... hmmm-- you decide.

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