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Bahb 11-07-2012 04:32 PM

What To Do With Faulty Products
 
Lately on the Forums I notice many Newbies struggling with products and the Oldsters here chime in with suggestions for making the outcome better. As much as I have admired the helpful response here, I'm reminded of the Pallette debacle at PTI. The ink was just plain bad and it took alot of money wasted by alot of Stampers before PTI would give in and admit yes the ink was plain bad and changing the Stampers' techniques didn't make bad ink better. I'm one of the many who spent the money and got stuck with many pads of bad ink. And now I am stuck with many pads of bad ink from 3 other companies too. The fact is, ink production was sent abroad and the result is watery bad ink. So far I haven't found a brand I cannot say the same thing about.

Heat tools are my latest gripe. The wattage has been reduced so much that you could spend until Easter heat embossing your Christmas cards.

I sent one heat tool back. It cost $8.35 to do that. I had paid $11 to get it delivered in the first place. The credit I got for the tool I sent back was the price of the tool, which was slightly more than the price I was out for the shipping. $19.35 of my hard-earned dollars down the drain.

I recently bought 5 open-stock markers with the dual points. One point on each was totally dry. I haven't ever bought a marker, and I have dozens, that at least one tip wasn't dry and sometimes both have been dry.

The ATG tape I've used for years suddenly is junk. It barely sticks, it gets all gummy, and it rolls so galley-wampum each roll has to be re-threaded at least three times, a big pain in the neck!

The Sticky Stuff I used for gold-leafing suddenly stopped sticking. So I ordered new. That doesn't stick either.

The Stickles I just bought collapse as they dry, making my cards look like a kindergarten project. But another bottle in the same shipment stays perky like in the olden days.

The other day I read here Embossing Powder has a shelf life. For sure
Stazon ink has a shelf life. And I know all adhesives have a shelf life.

So I want to know how we can continue this addiction without going broke trying to find products that haven't exceeded their shelf life and/or turned to junk because their manufacturers have been changed.

It's getting way to expensive to "eat" the bad products that arrive so often lately. And it's way too expensive to return them to the vendor. Besides, it's not the vendors' fault. Would you want to return bad stuff to Nicole, Ellen, Gina or any of our other favorite vendors?

What do you do when you receive bad product?

Bahb

vz5dzh 11-07-2012 05:13 PM

I think I would send it back to the vendor. If they overstocked on products that do go bad over time, then it is partially their fault. If they got an old supply of products from the manufacturer, they need to know that so they can follow up with them. I don't think there is any other option.

Now if I bought something and didn't use it for years, that is my own fault. That has been know to happen around here. :rolleyes:

Angelnorth 11-08-2012 01:57 AM

Contacting the manufacturer is an option. Nobody wants their product to get a bad reputation and these days it's very easy for that to happen as people post on boards like this, leave reviews on vendors' web sites etc etc. Even good companies can have a production quality problem with a batch of product - letting them know you got a bad one can help them sort out issues.

Reputable companies like Ranger or Sizzix generally have excellent customer service. Production of Ranger inks, Stickles etc is all US-based so if it's important to you that you're not buying stuff that has been "outsourced" for production stick with brands that don't do it (more of a problem for tools since almost all of those are made in places like the Far East). I have Ranger inks from their Adirondack and Distress lines, some purchased as recently as last week and have had no issues with them at all. I've also had no issues with the Tsukineko inks I have (Brilliance and Versafine) although I have seen some reports of new Memento colours being blotchy (I don't have any of those personally).

A couple of examples of going direct to companies - Ranger had a batch of Perfect Medium ink pads a couple of years ago that were bad (the foam pad disintegrated as soon as you tried to use it). They sent replacement pads free of charge to folk reporting the problem (no return of faulty pad required, no shipping expense to get the new one). My Big Shot died a horrible death with the bearings going - Sizzix/Ellison reprovided a replacement free of charge, again no requirement to send back the dud and no charge to ship the new one.

I don't know what consumer protection is in place for you guys. Here in the UK there's a concept of things having to be "fit for purpose" and if an item fails to live up to that you are entitled to a refund from the vendor. It might be worth checking your rights so that you're well informed when you approach either a vendor or a manufacturer with a problem.

Scrapjanny 11-08-2012 04:23 AM

While we're on this topic, does anyone know of a better way to contact Ranger besides via their "Contact Us" form on their website? I've contacted them twice about a defective bottle of Stickles, but I haven't received any response.

Angelnorth 11-08-2012 04:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Scrapjanny (Post 19810326)
While we're on this topic, does anyone know of a better way to contact Ranger besides via their "Contact Us" form on their website? I've contacted them twice about a defective bottle of Stickles, but I haven't received any response.

If you scroll to the bottom of the Ranger home page (here) there's an email address, a phone number and a fax number. Not sure when you tried to contact them but I think they had some issues when Sandy came through.

cbet 11-08-2012 07:49 AM

Quote:

Would you want to return bad stuff to Nicole, Ellen, Gina or any of our other favorite vendors?
This is an attitude that I find really intriguing in our crafting. I don't think most of us would have a problem returning bad stuff to Shopko or Walgreens or Amazon, so why should we have a problem returning bad items to our favorite vendors? And if i purchased a bottle of Walgreens brand nail polish (just as an example) and it was bad - separated, runny, never dried - and I contacted customer service about it and they tried to tell me I was just using it wrong and had 17,000 tips about things that I could do to try to make it work, I'd be pretty bent out of shape. I've used nail polish before; I know how it SHOULD work; I just want my money back and for you to fix the formula or take it off the market. And I'd be doubly bent out of shape if I then posted about my problem online and other nail polish afficiandos jumped all over me because I might hurt Walgreens feelings by saying that their nail polish is crap. And yet, this happens with stamping companies all the time.

Reminds me of a controversy on a different board a while back when some well-known scrap celebrity introduced a line of embellishments that included tape with the days of the week on it - and one of the days was spelled wrong. I was amazed at the number of people who handslapped those who complained about it because they were sure it was "hurting scrapcelebrity's feelings". Umm, it would have hurt my feelings to be stuck with a roll of tape with misspelled Thursdays because the person selling it had such delicate feelings that they couldn't handle that somewhere along the line, a goofy mistake wasn't noticed. (Contrast that with a recent release from Gina K that had a misspelled word. As soon as she found out about it she apologized, and assured everyone that the stamp was being corrected and that anyone who got the misspelled version would be sent a correct one. Class all the way.)

Nicole, Ellen and Gina are businesswomen. Most of us don't know them personally (even though we might like to). And as businesswomen, I would think that they would want to know if what they are selling is not up to snuff, so that they can relay that information to their suppliers.

Now, sometimes, it is a matter of being new to a tool and it having features that you didn't realize. I've showed at least 3 people in real life where to find the envelope template on their Martha Stewart Scoring board, when they didn't know they had one. That wasn't a Martha problem - it's shown on the packaging. That was a problem of someone getting a new toy and needing to play with it immediately, without reading all the information with it first :)

Bahb 11-08-2012 08:42 AM

I "ate" alot of bad product before I got to " I've had it and I'm not gonna take it anymore!"

My first stop was with the manufacturer of PrismaColors. I had invested in several additions to my old set. They offered to replace my bad ones. I wasn't looking for A replacement. I was looking for their idea of what technique I could use to better my outcome. Two or three letters between us happened before I ran across a web site used by artists who dabble mainly in colored pencil drawing. They outlined what had happened in that industry, and more particularly to PrismaColor, and the problem was clear....the manufacturer was sticking to their story that nothing about their pencils had changed, only the place of manufacturing had changed. Anyone who has used and loved PrismaColors before the site of manufacturing changed knows what to look for when buying new, which is why OLD PrismaColors now get high prices when they are sold on Ebay.

My next trial for satisfaction was with the manufacturer of Palette inks I had bought at PTI. I felt sure I just had a bad batch, so I wrote to the manufacturer. They said send them back and they would analyze the problem. I did that and they sent me replacement (I think it was 5 colors), without any mention of their analysis. Still the inks were watery and I couldn't get a decent image no matter the stamp or the cardstock. I wrote again and got a letter two months later from an employee who said he was leaving the company but had turned the problem over to a person whose name he gave me. Meantime, many PTI customers were complaining in the PTI Forum, and all got the same answers....change the stamp, change the paper, use a stamping mat, store the pad upside down, try a different color, all the advice you see on these forums when people have ink problems.

EIGHT MONTHS LATER, PTI offered refunds, but I had sent my bad pads back to the manufacturer, so I didn't get a refund and didn't get a second batch from the manufacturer. In fact, the person whose name I had been given never responded to my letters nor did anyone else at the company. I have a very old Prussian Blue Palette ink pad (and reinker) I treasure, obviously made before they sent their manufacturing off-shore, so it isn't as if Palette inks were born bad. They used to be excellent.

I could go on here for several pages but suffice to say the manufacturing of ink products went off-shore at least 4 years ago, and because there is still old stock floating around, you can manage to get good old stuff or you can get bad new stuff or a mixture of the two. It's not a matter of a "bad batch" the manufacturer would like to know about.

If Ranger is doing all their manufacturing in the USA, that's wonderful news. That's what I was hoping to get with my original post.......some solutions. We Crafters are sitting ducks because of expiring shelf-lives that no one mentions, and off-shore manufacturing that companies never want to admit. To say nothing of the high shipping rates we now pay because so few of us have a local stamp store to frequent anymore.

AND, this is complicated by branded inks.........who makes the ink now sold under the Hero Arts name, for instance. Who makes the heat tool I just returned? And if hair dryers have the wattage printed on the package, why don't heat tools have the same, so we know what we are buying?

And by the way, last I looked, the tins new PrismaColors come in still have printed on them "Made in the USA". Wouldn't you guess that means the pencils were made in the USA? Wrong guess!

Angelnorth 11-08-2012 11:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bahb (Post 19810800)
If Ranger is doing all their manufacturing in the USA, that's wonderful news. That's what I was hoping to get with my original post.......some solutions.

From the Ranger web site "About us" section:

Quote:

Made in the USA

Ranger is very proud that all our inks, embossing powders, paints, dimensional glitters, glues and stamp cleaners are manufactured right here in the USA. These products are made in our facility located in Tinton Falls, New Jersey and a satellite location in Montrose, Pennsylvania.
There's an interesting little bit about their history as well (started in 1929 making inks for the banking industry!).

For anybody who is luck enough to live near the New Jersey site, there's an annual warehouse sale that's apparently fantastic!

Scrapjanny 11-08-2012 02:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Angelnorth (Post 19810345)
If you scroll to the bottom of the Ranger home page (here) there's an email address, a phone number and a fax number. Not sure when you tried to contact them but I think they had some issues when Sandy came through.

Thanks, Joanne. I actually contacted them once before Sandy and once about 3 days ago. I'll try emailing them. Funny that I didn't notice that at the bottom of the page. I guess I just stopped at the "Contact Us" section.

Thanks again!

KatarinaM 11-08-2012 04:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Angelnorth (Post 19811101)
From the Ranger web site "About us" section:



There's an interesting little bit about their history as well (started in 1929 making inks for the banking industry!).

For anybody who is luck enough to live near the New Jersey site, there's an annual warehouse sale that's apparently fantastic!



Wow, both of those locations are within a few hours of my home, and I never knew it. I visit friends in Montrose several times a year, and never knew Ranger was located there!
How do I find out about their warehouse sales, anyone ever go to one? Does Ranger have this info on their website?

lylacfey 11-09-2012 12:13 AM

Bahb- I am so happy you started this thread. I could have cried about the PTI ink.
I researched and researched for the perfect ink. I went back and fourth with PTI & SU. I finally settled on PTI. Bought all the colors and it was horrible. Nobody seemed to have problems. I thought I was a horrible stamper. A few months later I found out PTI had sucky inks. I could have screamed from a mountain top I was so happy. :) I now own all of SU's. I ripped out all the bad ink pads from the Palette and now use the cubes to make my own ink. :)

I was wondering why heat guns don't seem to heat very well any more. When I was a little girl and used to stamp I had a great heat gun. I thought it was me again. Thank you for mentioning this.

I have done everything to love my ATG gun. I am guilty of posting here trying to make the ATG gun better too. After my latest gummy episode and tape coming out wonky I had it. I yanked the tape out and use the tape alone without the gun. I used the tape without the gun before so I don't know why I needed the gun.

Stickles- My grump product. That little nozzle is !@#$%^Z&*(). I make my own Stickles now. I gave my Stickles away.

I do know why all us buy these products. We get caught up in the hype. I love to make my own art tools and I even go "Ooooh, I need that." I buy it and realize I don't need that. Of course a lot of times we can't take it back.

I think as crafters we are so frustrated we spent our precious art money on bad product we try to make it work. I am guilty. I won't do it any more. I realize one day if I don't like my electronic gadgets I trade them for what I do like. Why I am holding on to the ATG gun that I don't like and it doesn't like me. It can go to a good home that it will be loved and love the owner back.

The whole scrap celebrity hurting feelings. Yes, they are people. We know them. A lot of us actually interact with them. I try to remember that these girls and guys are also now a product line. If we don't like their products we need to let them know. I am sure Tim wants to make great products but sorry Tim some of your products suck. Tim knows that and tries to fix them. I mean Gina goes all out for great products and customer service. If I had a product line I would want my customers to return it if the product was bad.

Angelnorth 11-09-2012 01:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by KatarinaM (Post 19811434)
How do I find out about their warehouse sales, anyone ever go to one? Does Ranger have this info on their website?

You've missed this year's as it was September 15th - I think it's usually the same time of year. The Ranger blog carries details when there's a sale coming up and there's a Ranger mailing list that I would think they'd use to spread the word too (I'm not signed up to that list so I can't say for sure but I'd be surprised if they didn't use it that way). You'll find the blog here and there's a link up top right if you want to sign up for the mailing list.

HTH!

Scrapjanny 11-09-2012 05:52 AM

I've been to the Ranger warehouse sale three times. The first time was great. I got a lot of inks, re-inkers, etc. The second time I went, it was OK. I went with a few other people, and we got there late, so there wasn't much left. I went this past September, and I was very disappointed. The first 10 people or so came out with 3-4 large bags stuffed with products. That didn't leave much of a selection for everyone else. (I was only about 25th on line, and I got there a half hour before it started.)

What happens is that store owners and people who run large crops practically camp out in front of the warehouse hours before they open their doors and buy up all the "good stuff." Although I did manage to get a few good things, it really wasn't worth the hour + drive, tolls, and gas for me. I don't think I'll be going next year.

Bahb 11-09-2012 10:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lylacfey (Post 19812271)
Bahb-make my own ink. :)

Why I am holding on to the ATG gun that I don't like and it doesn't like me. It can go to a good home that it will be loved and love the owner back.
.

"A good home" suggests the problem is YOU, not the gun or the tape, which is not the case. For a bad product, there is no such thing as a "good home". But we Crafters tend to think first WE are the problem. That's been my position. No More! My hope is the manufacturers of ATG tape fix the problem with the tape, because the gun is a VERY simple tool that only needs tape that is wound correctly and has enough adhesive. Then you would love it.

Bahb

PaperManipulator 11-09-2012 11:55 AM

I had a problem with two dry Spectrum Noir markers. I contacted Crafters Companion and was given an apology and two new markers. They said they stand behind their products, and I believe it. Great customer service!

Skippet 11-09-2012 02:36 PM

"My first stop was with the manufacturer of PrismaColors. I had invested in several additions to my old set. They offered to replace my bad ones. I wasn't looking for A replacement. I was looking for their idea of what technique I could use to better my outcome. Two or three letters between us happened before I ran across a web site used by artists who dabble mainly in colored pencil drawing. They outlined what had happened in that industry, and more particularly to PrismaColor, and the problem was clear....the manufacturer was sticking to their story that nothing about their pencils had changed, only the place of manufacturing had changed. Anyone who has used and loved PrismaColors before the site of manufacturing changed knows what to look for when buying new, which is why OLD PrismaColors now get high prices when they are sold on Ebay."

A couple of years ago I bought a new PrismaColor set to replace my old beloved stubby pencils. I couldn't understand why my results were so unlike my previous work and I could not get the pencils to blend well. I too contacted PrismaColor several times regarding the dramatic change in the quality of their pencils manufactured outside the US. They did the same thing, offering to replace bad pencils, but refusing to even consider the possibility that anything about their manufacturing process had changed. I tried repeatedly to explain I did not want them to replace me new pencils with new pencils, but they acted like I was some poor misguided crazy who couldn't understand that nothing had changed other than the manufacture site. I finally gave up because they were not going to acknowledge any comprehension of the problem I was describing. I too stalk the old Stanford/PrismaColor auctions and have expanded out to also using Dewert water color pencils to try to get the results similar to the old Prismacolors.

Thanks for letting me know I wasn't imagining the problem!

Scrapjanny 11-09-2012 02:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Scrapjanny (Post 19812516)
I've been to the Ranger warehouse sale three times. The first time was great. I got a lot of inks, re-inkers, etc. The second time I went, it was OK. I went with a few other people, and we got there late, so there wasn't much left. I went this past September, and I was very disappointed. The first 10 people or so came out with 3-4 large bags stuffed with products. That didn't leave much of a selection for everyone else. (I was only about 25th on line, and I got there a half hour before it started.)

What happens is that store owners and people who run large crops practically camp out in front of the warehouse hours before they open their doors and buy up all the "good stuff." Although I did manage to get a few good things, it really wasn't worth the hour + drive, tolls, and gas for me. I don't think I'll be going next year.

I just had to pop in to say that a rep. from Ranger replied to my email. She asked for a photo, and she is having a replacement sent out to me shortly. :)

KatarinaM 11-10-2012 05:21 AM

That's disappointing, I don't think I would be willing to risk the long drive and wait to encounter that situation.
Thanks for the info!
Quote:

Originally Posted by Scrapjanny (Post 19812516)
I've been to the Ranger warehouse sale three times. The first time was great. I got a lot of inks, re-inkers, etc. The second time I went, it was OK. I went with a few other people, and we got there late, so there wasn't much left. I went this past September, and I was very disappointed. The first 10 people or so came out with 3-4 large bags stuffed with products. That didn't leave much of a selection for everyone else. (I was only about 25th on line, and I got there a half hour before it started.)

What happens is that store owners and people who run large crops practically camp out in front of the warehouse hours before they open their doors and buy up all the "good stuff." Although I did manage to get a few good things, it really wasn't worth the hour + drive, tolls, and gas for me. I don't think I'll be going next year.


vdoyle8 11-10-2012 06:18 AM

I have had great success when I've contacted manufacturers directly when I've been unhappy with a product.
I, too, had problems with my ATG gun when I first purchased it. I bought it when the pink one came out in Michael's. I could not get the tape to lay down well - it got all gummed up. I looked at the tape roll and it wasn't wound tight. I called 3M, they sent me new tape and a new gun, as well as a return shipping label to return the wonky tape. You really can't ask for anything more than that!

I recently called the manufacturer about a bottle of useless Goosebumps I recently purchased. I couldn't get the spray bottle to spray. The customer service rep I spoke to apologized and promised to send me a new bottle. It took a while but the new product arrived yesterday and works great.

I most often get the contact information off the product itself.

dorism6220 11-10-2012 03:28 PM

Ranger and Fiskars both have great customer service. The metal cutting edge of my Tim Holtz ruler recently fell out on its own - contacted Ranger but the ruler is put out by Advantus. They would not do anything to help.

mobrien207 11-15-2012 03:04 PM

Thankfully, I haven't had many bad products but I wouldn't hesitate to return it, either to the store or the manufacturer. I'd try the store first. I bought some Distress Markers at Archivers and the fine tip is dry. I don't have the receipt and they wouldn't do anything. I guess I'll ask Ranger.

On another note, I bought a lime green Nicole heat gun a year ago. It's still in the package and never been used. I guess I don't really need it if any of you want to purchase it from me. I can't speak to the wattage or heat power, but it's a little old, so it might be a good one. I can see that while Nicole Crafts, Inc. is in NJ, it's manufactured in Taiwan. If you're interested, PM me.
Mob

IInez 01-19-2013 01:39 AM

Better Heat Gun
 
I'm sure it's not as cute and was a little more spendy, but I just use my "industrial" heat gun meant for shop use and removing latex paint. I think it's a Wagner? I own it because I use it to smooth the tops of the candles I've made. On high it will certainly burn the paper. I keep it set up on a non-stick cookie sheet because the barrel gets quite hot. That said, my 11 y.o. is responsible enough to use it well.

Hallupino 01-19-2013 03:36 PM

A second vote here for using an industrial type of heat gun! Mine's a Milwaukee brand that I picked up at Home Depot while there with my hubby. The bonus here, ladies, is that you can tell your hubby quite truthfully that this is a tool BOTH of you can use, not just for crafting but actually useful household jobs! Now what could be more convincing than that? ;)
As for quality issues, I had a box of watercolour pencils that I bought half price from Michael's a couple of years ago and just gave them away because the pigments wouldn't dissolve very well when I wet them with a brush. The results were disappointing to say the least. I would have thought it was just my inexperience at using them except for a remarkable set of a dozen Faber-Castells a friend had given me ("Albrecht Durer" Art & Graphic kind). There is a huge difference between artist-quality and craft-quality materials, and I think this is the trap that we crafters often get stuck in. Sometimes (though there are many exceptions!) the manufacturers who market stuff to the "crafting community" seem to not take us, and therefore the quality of their products, as seriously. We are largely seen as hobbyists, not professional-level artists with the clout to make or break a company's reputation. The irony here is that "the crafting community" is just that- a very social group of people who get together and communicate all the time in classes or forums like this about what products we like or don't like, and the kinds of experiences we've had with companies and their materials. And I should add, in case anyone thought I was saying we lack artistic ability, there is a great deal of stunning artistic talent within this community and several members who DO make a profession, and sometimes a living, out of this "hobby".
It's sad and frustrating to see the decline in quality of both products and customer service from so many companies these days, not just in crafting. What gives me hope is that many of us are trying to do and make more things ouselves and not relying on the cheap waste that gets passed on to us in the stores. Could there be a better time for something like Etsy? I do try to support those companies that make better-quality products, that provide useful and easy-to-access support for them, and that keep the jobs here. Those products are more expensive up front, but at least they're keepers. And companies like that need more support than ever in these very tough, race-to-the-bottom times.
Now if only there was a company out there making professional artist-quality stamp pads and ink, and stamps and paper and felt and fabric and embellishments in coordinating colours. Oh, to dream...

weims 01-19-2013 04:58 PM

I guess I don't get this thought that we should suck up and not return things that aren't right. I try to buy locally if at all possible - either at my LSS, or at M's, HL or JA.
I also try to purchase other things I need locally - clothing, horse items, etc. I realize I'm lucky to live where there are a lot of options. I did recently purchase a gift for my daughter from a store in another state, which didn't fit. I sent it back. Yes, I spent $6 to return it, but it was enough of a bargain even with the extra $6 to make it worth it.

I do, however, ALWAYS know the return policies of the stores I do business with. There is a clothing store here that has cute things, but will only take returns for store credit. I don't shop there very often. When a store gets something in that is defective, they can send things back to the manufacturer. Manufacturers want to know if their products aren't good so they can fix that.

lylacfey 01-20-2013 04:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hallupino (Post 19951907)
There is a huge difference between artist-quality and craft-quality materials, and I think this is the trap that we crafters often get stuck in. Sometimes (though there are many exceptions!) the manufacturers who market stuff to the "crafting community" seem to not take us, and therefore the quality of their products, as seriously. We are largely seen as hobbyists, not professional-level artists with the clout to make or break a company's reputation. The irony here is that "the crafting community" is just that- a very social group of people who get together and communicate all the time in classes or forums like this about what products we like or don't like, and the kinds of experiences we've had with companies and their materials. And I should add, in case anyone thought I was saying we lack artistic ability, there is a great deal of stunning artistic talent within this community and several members who DO make a profession, and sometimes a living, out of this "hobby".
It's sad and frustrating to see the decline in quality of both products and customer service from so many companies these days, not just in crafting. What gives me hope is that many of us are trying to do and make more things ouselves and not relying on the cheap waste that gets passed on to us in the stores. Could there be a better time for something like Etsy? I do try to support those companies that make better-quality products, that provide useful and easy-to-access support for them, and that keep the jobs here. Those products are more expensive up front, but at least they're keepers. And companies like that need more support than ever in these very tough, race-to-the-bottom times.

I love what you wrote. I always bought professional art quality tools before I got into paper crafting. Like you said there are exceptions. I use cheaper brands too. I love a lot of Crayola products. There are some art quality tools that are bad quality but for the most part that is the rare exception.

When I got into the paper crafting world. I bought all the different type tools. I was not happy with the quality. I fell in the trap of trying to get them to work the way I wanted. I finally gave up last year. :)

I am one who will make my tool before I buy it.

Another thing I think keeps us creative girls from returning faulty products is the popularity over the products. You hear everyone raving about the product but you are having problems with it. You always get that group of women who make you feel like it's your fault and your the loser. I call it keep up with the Joneses mentality. You keep trying to make the product work or you just don't like it. If you don't use it you feel like a loser too. I know what I am writing is a bit controversial but I actually get PM's from girls over this every single week. I have fallen in the trap too. Mine was due to depression. You know what changed? You Tube videos. I started watching You Tube videos and I would come across some of these women who rave only to find out they can't use the products either, ROFL!

I buy what works for me now and makes me feel good using it. If it's faulty I have started returning. If it's something I am just not good at using then I give it away. I know somebody can use it. A lot of times I have gotten a tool that a friend could not use and was perfect for me. It's a nice win-win situation.

sempermom 01-20-2013 06:14 PM

If you ever need a Fiskars item replaced, just go to thier website, click on their Warranty tab and send them an email containing an attched photo of the item. They will send a new one right away and you do not need to send them the faulty item in return!

So far, they have replaced 2 trimmers cause the markings rubbed off, and 2 squeeze punches just because the comfort grip broke, and a border punch that jammed! All free of charge!!

Gina K. Designs 01-21-2013 05:48 AM

Hi,
I just thought I'd chime in here since my name was mentioned. If you ever have a problem with anything your purchase at Gina K. Designs, contact customer service and we will either replace it or give you a refund. We don't want anyone to be unhappy with any product we sell. If we need you to return it, we will pay the shipping. I hope that helps with regard to my company.
Hugs,
Gina K.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bahb (Post 19809661)
Lately on the Forums I notice many Newbies struggling with products and the Oldsters here chime in with suggestions for making the outcome better. As much as I have admired the helpful response here, I'm reminded of the Pallette debacle at PTI. The ink was just plain bad and it took alot of money wasted by alot of Stampers before PTI would give in and admit yes the ink was plain bad and changing the Stampers' techniques didn't make bad ink better. I'm one of the many who spent the money and got stuck with many pads of bad ink. And now I am stuck with many pads of bad ink from 3 other companies too. The fact is, ink production was sent abroad and the result is watery bad ink. So far I haven't found a brand I cannot say the same thing about.

Heat tools are my latest gripe. The wattage has been reduced so much that you could spend until Easter heat embossing your Christmas cards.

I sent one heat tool back. It cost $8.35 to do that. I had paid $11 to get it delivered in the first place. The credit I got for the tool I sent back was the price of the tool, which was slightly more than the price I was out for the shipping. $19.35 of my hard-earned dollars down the drain.

I recently bought 5 open-stock markers with the dual points. One point on each was totally dry. I haven't ever bought a marker, and I have dozens, that at least one tip wasn't dry and sometimes both have been dry.

The ATG tape I've used for years suddenly is junk. It barely sticks, it gets all gummy, and it rolls so galley-wampum each roll has to be re-threaded at least three times, a big pain in the neck!

The Sticky Stuff I used for gold-leafing suddenly stopped sticking. So I ordered new. That doesn't stick either.

The Stickles I just bought collapse as they dry, making my cards look like a kindergarten project. But another bottle in the same shipment stays perky like in the olden days.

The other day I read here Embossing Powder has a shelf life. For sure
Stazon ink has a shelf life. And I know all adhesives have a shelf life.

So I want to know how we can continue this addiction without going broke trying to find products that haven't exceeded their shelf life and/or turned to junk because their manufacturers have been changed.

It's getting way to expensive to "eat" the bad products that arrive so often lately. And it's way too expensive to return them to the vendor. Besides, it's not the vendors' fault. Would you want to return bad stuff to Nicole, Ellen, Gina or any of our other favorite vendors?

What do you do when you receive bad product?

Bahb


Crafter 4 Life 01-22-2013 05:47 PM

If I am not satisfied with a product and I still have the receipt and tags I return it! There is no reason for ANY company not to stand behind their products. I have had satisfactory customer service from the companies whose product didn't measure up as advertised.

I had to return a SU scallop punch 3 times because the scallops would always be fuzzy. I had to return a Tonic large paper cutter because the measurement thing across the top was 'off'. (Tonic sent me a new on with a return label to send them the first one.) These items are just an example.

I return other items also. I have a new puppy and had to return 3 harnesses because the XS was even too big and the one that had all the adjustment thingies was too heavy for my puppy. (He weighs only 4 lbs)

There is no reason we shopper should have to 'settle' when a product does not perform as advertised. I'm sure we all worked hard for our discretionary $$$

mrsclark2001 01-23-2013 07:25 PM

When my ATG went haywire, I emailed 3M. Someone emailed be back right away with a phone number to call so we could trouble shoot together. She instructed me step by step and my ATG has worked great since then (about a year). I was very impressed with their service!

Crafter 4 Life 01-24-2013 01:16 PM

When 3M was having trouble with their 714 ATG, there was one person assigned to take all the customer service question re: problem with the 714. I forgot her mp name since it was several years ago but she was very helpful and the other customer service reps knew to direct you immediately with her. It took several different 714 ATGs and several phone calls but the problem was resolved to my satisfaction. I use my ATG on most of my projects so having one that works all the time is a relief. YAY, for a company that WANTS happy customers!

Carol W 01-27-2013 09:24 AM

Glad to see that Gina popped in here to reiterate her stance on returning products to her company. As has been mentioned, GinaKDesigns is a CLASS company!

I have to add how much I agree with the comments on here about the illusion that certain vendors are our "friends" and we don't want to "hurt them." Indeed, there may be a small percentage of us who actually do know a certain *scrapcelebrity* or other, and they would feel sorry to have to give bad news to a friend (and I make a distinction between truly knowing someone well enough to be personal friends, as opposed to *feeling like we know them* because we read their blogs/view the family photos they share/comment on their posts/etc.)
But everyone else has a business relationship, not a personal relationship, with these people. As has been said, if you respect that person as a businesswoman, you hold her to the appropriate standard of professionalism. And in that sense, to expect appropriate correction for a faulty item is a compliment to her.

Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy the personable approach that many vendors take, and their friendly communication and sharing bits of their personal lives. I enjoy *feeling like I know* certain scrapcelebrities. But I think it's important not to blur the line between business interactions and "stuff your friend does for you."


p.s.
There is a company I no longer patronize because they would alternately play the "we're a top-notch professional company, obsessed with detail" card and then the "but I'm your friend, you're hurting my feelings; I didn't make this mistake on purpose!" card -- in other words, intentionally (in my opinion) blurring the line I describe above. I sort of accepted the attitude for a while, but then the scale of the problems (and proportionately, the scale of the petulance) became just too big. There was also a systemic attitude in the company of not taking responsibility for problems. So I've sworn off them.

mobrien207 01-27-2013 09:38 AM

Hi,
I'm in agreement with Carol. Ultimately, its a business and as a woman involved in direct sales myself, I want to provide a quality product to my customers. If that customer is my friend I expect them to be totally hones with me. If the corporation won't stand behind their product then I don't want to be involved with them. In the end, I think those companies won't last the test of time because they'll lose customers.

I deliberately try to patronize small businesses and I learn of them by word of mouth literrally or via board like SCS. I'll give them a lot of wiggle room for problems, but eventually I'd give them up if the product or customer service is lacking. In my business, I expect to be treated similarly, but always with respect.

While the big box stores (including those online) can compete on price, my experience is that their sales force has no product knowledge and often doesn't even know some of the basics about our hobby. Just this past week I was asking about ArtBin and several clerks just stared at me with a blank face...frustrating.

By the same token, I'm willing to pay a bit more to get service, be it on faulty items or just plain old help. I go 3 hours out of my way to patronize a LSS because the husband and wife team have a great store and she's very generous in demoing anything you want to see or need help with. I'll spend a few hours there and leave a chunk of change, but it's worth it to me to do that a couple times a year.

Just my 2 cents or was it vents?
Mob

mayjoynstamp 01-27-2013 07:19 PM

You know, Did you ever do this?
I got a CASE of ATG tape because it was on SALE and because it worked out to be cheaper per roll.... well it turns out I couldn't use it up before It wasn't good so I made a bad choice on that part.

So now I go in with a couple of pals and we share a box and so I have fresh usable stuff whenever I need.

And I am careful of storing my stuff as stash does eventually dry up.... 5 or ten years later.,,, :confused: some stuff you can resurrect and some you can re ink. Cool/ dry and tightly sealed.....

but I am wiser about buying SO much. I have to use it up that's all....
So I'm off to get busy and build a card and do a page or two. :)

lylacfey 01-28-2013 01:08 AM

Carol- You post was so on the dot. I am glad you spoke up about the scrapcelebrity friends. As crafters we really do that not wanting to hurt their feelings. I think it's gotten worse because of the Internet because we do know them on the boards. We don't want to look like mean people either. I am guilty of it. I hate hurting anyone in real life or online. You know I cuss out my friends when they deserve it. :D! They love me for it. I think they do they have told me so. :) I do have a couple of scrapcelebrity friends that are like sisters to me and I am willing to tell them what is wrong when I see it. They still care for me.

mayjoynstamp- Cute user name. I agree with you about stocking up on supplies that go bad. I am guilty of that. I dropped a small fortune on Xyron adhesive refills. They all went bad. I didn't know they had a shelf life. That was one of those heartsick moments. I couldn't even look at Xyron for the longest time. I know it was my fault for stocking up. Lesson learned and I am more careful now stocking up on things. Our craft tools are not toliet paper. We don't need a lifetime supply. :D! I know some of you are saying "Be quiet!" :)

StampingRealtor 01-29-2013 01:12 AM

Faulty Marvy Circle Punch
 
This is an odd post....I have a faulty Marvy Circle punch! It used to punch and I've had it about a year. Now the bottom metal circle piece that punches the paper has expanded beyond the metal it punches through on the punch and will not punch at all. It just stops because the components don't fit anymore.

I don't remember where I bought it and the receipt is long gone. Not even sure how to get started on this one. I haven't had it that long!

Karen


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