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Small bass cab co.....issues

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Means2nEnd, Feb 17, 2013.

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  1. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    I have had a recent troubling story come across to me from a well-respected member here and close friend. I have done dealing with this guy for years in tens of thousands of dollars starting with a purchase of a Wal bass over eBay and became close over the years and have had dozens of transactions across the country and most times based on complete trust professionalism. I mention all this only to demonstrate how much I trust his word and description of a situation and or item.

    I have been talking with him over the past few months about a small builder in southern California of custom and non-custom bass cabinets. The guy is a seemingly well respected builder and has been so for a long time his cabs can be seen all over Talkbass. Although I do not have anyone in my circle owning and gigging this guy’s cabs I have heard them in person and read many reviews. That being said his recent exchange has swayed me to not order a cab I was planning on ordering in the near future. I am posting this for several reasons. I would like to get feedback on the subject maybe to see what others might think and how they might size up the situation. I do not mean to sway the facts one way or the other just present them as they are. Sure I have my own personal feelings about it enough so as to not order anything from the guy. I also think one of the reasons of TB is to share information good or bad so it may help a prospective buyer to make the right decision if they are going to lay out some hard earned cash on an item and they might know just who they are dealing with.

    So I am just going to make bullet points as to try and avoid a novel of a post as they were relayed to me and as how I do believe they occurred.

    * Guy is interested in a cab. Builder helps and consults buyer on best cab for his needs and gives a more than fair discounted price since already built and ready to go including free shipping. Cab is being bought with a check.
    * Buyer finds out troubling financial news about his significant other and requests to temporarily back out of deal for time being. Builder is cool about it asks he not cancel check as it’s deposited and builder doesn’t want to incur bounced check fees. Buyer is cool about it and asks if he can be refunded check back. Builder say yes cool as soon as confirmed bank clears it.
    * Along the way buyer is not completely aware of re stocking fees and shipping fees as not clearly noted on website or from seller and figures he caught builder in time before he ships cab since check has not cleared and just sent. Builder follows up 15 min later with email stating cab was already picked up by FedEx per his office desk administrator.
    * Buyer requested it be tracked back to shop and seller says his assistant is on the phone trying to get FedEx to retrieve the cab. No response after this.
    * Buyer does not receive cab and builder as promised sends check back to buyer received 5 days later. So far so good, both sides staying on course.
    * Buyer gets check from builder with an invoice minus shipping fees and re stocking fees. Buyer says wow OK cab most likely never shipped and I never received cab and realizes there are costs involved and is not happy with charges but can understand and questions builder.
    * Builder explains fees to buyer and buyer says OK you want to pull funds for a check I didn’t cancel out of trust and to help you not get cancellation fee and you pull fees out anyway, then requests please show me tracking information as proof of actual shipping and need for restocking fee and asks more than 4-5 times over several emails.
    * Builder never responds to buyers request, states he is on the road traveling until weekend and claims 100% customer satisfaction and all but threatens legal retaliation for possibility of negative or slanderous posts on interwebs by buyer. Never provides proof the cab even left his shop.
    * Shouldn’t a buyer be provided tracking or shipping information or some proof of charges since cab never was received physically? Threatening legal fallout and pursuit without proof of charges seems more than unfair and unfounded.
    * Buyer says just show me proof of your charges and I’ll stop any communications and questions builder ignores and provides nothing.

    What would you guys think/do? I believe cab never shipped at all and builder is upset about the cancellation and has time invested and wants a return on it. If that is the case I can understand but if a charge is created and listed as a FedEx fee/picked up from shop there should be tracking info provided to justify it and to prove there was actual re-stocking?
  2. CL400Peavey

    CL400Peavey Supporting Member

    Nov 7, 2011
    Grand Rapids Michigan
    I couldnt get through your last paragraph, expected bullet points and my ADD kicked in.

    Can you cut through the BS and just tell us who this is all about?
  3. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Sorry about the format I had a hard time trying to get it all in and not be too long winded and random but that’s how I am. I am trying to get feedback on what happened and what the members think without thrashing or bashing the builder. This did not happen to me but very well could have. I prefer to buy basses and equipment from smaller builders as well as the big corporate companies personally and I’m not out to hurt anyone so for the time being I would prefer not to mention name of builder. If that’s a problem I apologize…
  4. eyeballkid


    Jul 19, 2009
    wes virginny
    some are going to say "dems da breaks", but I think it's totally reasonable to ask for proof of expenses your being charged for there is no "restocking" expense if the cab never moved.
  5. xk49w

    xk49w Supporting Member

    Whether merchandise was placed in a shipping container, made it to the shipping dock and was shipped or not, unless otherwise stated restocking fees could be anything the builder says it is. This is not the first time I have heard of order cancellations being subject to restocking fees.

    The request to not cancel the check was maybe a little, wrinkly as it turned out. This is a good anecdote that suggests paying by credit card for these sorts of purchases.
  6. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Yeh I can see that being so even though I don't agree with it but builder had time invested so I sort of get that part of it but FedEx fees without any tracking info? That seems shady to me and excessive.
  7. dbnet03


    Jan 1, 2010
    I think the builder should have provided the shipping information if he's charging/adding to the buyer a shipping fee. I will not agree to a charges that hasn't been incurred. I've always heard good things about small bass co. except for one. This maybe the same company or another one.
  8. Any carrier is not a free service. If they pick up a package and the shipment is cancelled they also need to return to shipper. If it doesn't make it to a hub before returning then the tracking number is invalid (at least the way I remember it from years ago). If the unit was pulled from stock, made ready for shipment and then must be returned to stock that would create a restocking fee. Everyone wants to be paid for their time and efforts.

    The failing I see here is the check should not have been returned. The business should have made the customer aware of handling and re-stock fees and issued a refund check with those fees deducted form the original amount. Normal restock fees are 15 to 20% and should be expected if you cancel after payment was already received. IME/IMO
  9. The question I would have is about the shipping cost. I don't know what Fed-Ex's policy is when a parcel has been picked up and then returned. I would be surprised if it is free.

    The restocking fee seems iffy to me. Yes, the cabinet was packed up but they can leave it packed until it is ready to ship again. Also, the seller requested that the check not be cancelled. In my opinion this fee should have been waived in exchange for this. It seems to me the seller asked for no cancellation only so he could charge these fees before returning the check and that seems bogus to me. If he wanted reimbursement for the shipping fees then he should have provided proof of the cost and requested that separately from the buyer.

    In the end, I would not order a cabinet from that seller either.
  10. will33


    May 22, 2006
    I would imagine there'd at least be a little time/hassle involved starting and then cancelling a shipping order, even if it didn't ship. Maybe some labor in packaging?...I don't know.

    IMO, "restocking fees" are sort of a made up way of finding something to charge people for, but many companies do it, not just music gear.

    If it was some small portion of the price that got held back, I'd probably be OK with it as folks do need something for their time and trouble. If they were trying to keep like 20% or something as some made up fee, I wouldn't like that at all.
  11. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Thanks personally me either. There has been no proof of FedEx picking anything up, or packing up any cabinet for that matter. Buyer doesn't have proof it wasn't packed up so for me if your going to charge me for something listed as FedEx charge then give me the number...looks like there is something being hidden.
  12. Ever try to get your Doctor to wave his bill when they couldn't identify what your trouble was?
    Does anyone here work and not expect to get paid for their time or pay their employees without the income to cover those expenses?
    The customer burned up time and effort of at least two people and a separate business. They are both businesses not welfare offices!
  13. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Ever go to the doctor and get charged for aspirin you never got? I would be OK for the visit charge but not for things that I didn’t get or didn’t happen is my point. Re-stock OK shipping no without proof not OK.
  14. gravesbass

    gravesbass Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2006
    San Jose, CA
    Endorsing Artist: MesaBoogie-SpectorBass-Dunlop-EMG Pickups-Darkglass-Hipshot
    So this justifies a no proof of shipping charge when the customer went on trust and didn't cancel the check so the seller didn't get the bounce fees...? And business charged fees afterwards anyways? And no proof of actual shipping? I am going the other way on this one.... shady.
  15. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Thanks everyone I didn’t mean for it to get heated I trust and respect most everyone’s opinion and I am letting my personal feelings get in the way of my original post I just wanted feedback I apologize and thanks for it. Thanks for the honest feedback.
  16. Like I said before, if it didn't leave the local office and make it to a hub the tracking number would be void. There would be no "shipping charge" only a service fee that will be billed to the FedEx account buried in the businesses monthly bill. You can't expect to have access to that personal business document.
    If this was a large supplier maybe they could afford to absorb these charges? As it is the product was offered with most of the meat off the bone as far as any profit goes. The builder could have said "Sorry, it was sold at a discount and it is too late to cancel." That would certainly be his right, he is not doing this to loose money.
    Or does ANYONE here think he should be in business to loose money?
    I don't know who it is you are speaking of and have no business of my own anymore. So no personal interest other maybe trying to make people understand that for a business to exist it must at least break even?
  17. Means2nEnd

    Means2nEnd Supporting Member

    Right on I'm picking up what your laying down.
  18. Small businesses rarely can afford to have a full time lawyer on staff to cover all disclaimers? The fact that he was trying to avoid the returned check fee indicates that the product was being sold at the break-even or loss point already? Should he have made the customer aware of fees for cancellation, yes he should have. Failing of being a small business not a large business?

    I hope you didn't think I was getting heated? I'm not :)
  19. Jazz Ad

    Jazz Ad Mi la ré sol Supporting Member

    Annoying buyer allowing himself to cancel a buy because he "knows" the seller and can communicate with him.
    This kind of stuff kills small businesses.
    Buy when you have the money. If for some reason you bought and run short, sorry you shouldn't have bought in the first place.
  20. jnewmark

    jnewmark Just wanna play the groove. Supporting Member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Stax 1966
    Play guitar.
    Your first bullet point states that shipping was free . So what exactly were the " shipping fees " ? If Fedex charged him some sort of fee for returning the cab or canceling the shipment, I can understand that. Restocking fees are a way of life. Both are passed on to the buyer. So, I guess it's live and learn and let it go. Comes under the " life is too short " category.

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