I,ve read many negative postings regarding Ken's CS department and his personal treatment of customers over the phone. My experiences have been quite the contrary. I purchased a Smith BSR6P 6 string from the great folks at the LA Bass exchange. Because I have a flair for exotic woods and had a particular sound in mind, I called and spoke to Ken directly. I spoke to him two or three times actually. He was very direct and to the point yet patient enough to listen to my "ramblings." He was dead on with the woods he suggested for my bass and the result is a fantastic sounding bass with a Cocobolo top and back, mahogany core, ebony fretboard and series/parallel switches. Prior to that, I bought a set of Smith strings from my local music store. I strung up my bass only to have the D string pop at the ball end of the string. I called Smith to ask for a replacement D string and what I received (no questions asked) was two complete sets of the strings I used and a Smth Tee shirt. We all agree that as customers, we should be valued and have our needs met in a courteous, professional manner. Ken takes tremendous pride in his products and is truly an innovator in the field. He is very focused and extremely busy most of the time and his basses speak for themselves. In conclusion, if he seems a bit gruff to deal with from time to time, he is running a business that places a lot of demands on his time. He has a great heart and wants to see to it that his basses and strings are as close to perfection as he can so we can enjoy more hours of music making and less time in the repair shop. If your name was plastered all over your product, wouldn't you feel the same way? Continue to march!