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Thread: Orders

  1. #1
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    Orders

    Hi First I have not had a bad experience with the vendors I have delt with on Hammock Form.

    I'm wondering how many of you are feeling the same I am with a lot of vendors.. NOT ALL.. You make a order and pay for it and than the wait begins. Your credit card bill comes and you pay it off and your still waiting for the product. Some sites I've been on are saying 8-9 weeks lead time and 3-4 weeks is pretty common. So why don't they charge my card 7-10 days before they start working your order?
    There is a problem when you do not get your product and have to call the credit card company and 2 months has gone by. There is not much they can do for you to help recover your your money in a speedy fashion.
    When using pay pal you do have some actions you can take that will get their attention if need be. Again there are time restrictions as well.

    Than there are a few vendors who do not even supply a phone number on their site so all communication is though email. Email is not the best way esp for newbies to get the best information and make a good decision. I guess it is good for sales, selling you something only to have you buy something else to replace it.

    Don't get me wrong I want to support cottage vendors and American Made. At the same time.. If you are going to run your business incognito and hide behind closed doors I will not be ordering from you.

    Just wondering why some companies need to be paid so far in advance. Is it overhead, stocking product??

  2. #2
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    There's a vendor or two to avoid due to customer service issues. However, you seem to be lumping all vendors into the same bucket. Our cottage vendors are definitely not ENO, and if you want that kind of product (overpriced, overweight, and generally inferior), then take your business to ENO.

    Cuben fiber right now is in short supply. Hammock Gear says straight up that you'll wait 8 to 10 weeks for a CF tarp. What are you going to do? Take your business elsewhere? There's only one other CF vendor out there, zpacks, so hopefully he isn't having any time constraints (though I suspect he is, since he has the same supplier). Regardless, options are limited in this field.

    Personally, I've been satisfied with the customer service I've received from the cottage vendors I frequent. They're not ENO, and that's a start.
    "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Ralph Waldo Emerson

  3. #3
    Member Magnum Power's Avatar
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    I was surprised to see that most businesses here charge your credit card at ordering. Most places charge at shipping. As long as one receives the product that was ordered, I guess it's ok. But if the product isn't delivered in a timely manner or the business goes under, and you have an outstanding order, you may have a hard time getting your money. I've felt with this in the show car world.
    Another small company that makes Cuban Fiber products is Hyperlite Mountain Gear. I'm sure Mike would work with Hammockers to make a tarp to your liking. That company has t posted any delays in product shipping.

  4. #4
    Senior Member punkisdead's Avatar
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    You also have to consider that many of the vendors may not have the ability to stock raw materials and may rely on your payment to cover that cost.

  5. #5
    Senior Member T- Minus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike04345 View Post

    Just wondering why some companies need to be paid so far in advance. Is it overhead, stocking product??
    I'm not a vendor first off but I would say this to be frank and honest with your query. When dealing with a vendor of handmade to order goods, your dealing with the source of product, they are making a custom product for you, they may have to order special materials to staffing issues if they source out production; they may have a back log of orders prior to yours; they may have a small number of employes skilled to make your item; the random demand or need for product is near impossible to build a surplus of goods due to the needs of the consumer and cost devoted to warehousing, overhead, and goods used to craft products. Keeping it all straight, orders questions, payments, shipments, advertising, web content, blogs, specials, overhead, staff, production, equipment, insurance, taxes, pay role, law suits, returns, defects, endless questions to get a sale ect are just a few of the many daily task a small company does and believe me it takes a lot of skill to keep in all running in a organized manner, so please know its not all about your money its about satisfying you and many others in a system that works, for both sides. Now the value of custom work, tailored to your needs, the detail, the wait, and quality is without any middleman mark ups or additional seller fees, ect and payment upfront is common for service based jobs. But some try a little harder than others to give your more service and better products to keep you coming back.
    Do not correct a fool or he will hate you, correct a wise man and he will appreciate you.
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  6. #6
    silentorpheus's Avatar
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    I think you have to consider the fact that many of the items that are sold by the 'cottage' vendors here on the forums are made to order, custom items. So it makes sense that you pay something up front in order to, in essence, commission then to start your project. Perhaps it might make more sense if you were to pay a deposit to start the work, and the balance of the money owed upon delivery - but also realize that more often than not you are dealing with a payment service like paypal. I'm not certain, but I don't know that paypal offers the option for a vendor to accept a sale, but not bill until later. If they have a site where you click a bunch of options and it submits the order and redirects you to paypal, then you're at the mercy of how that protocol operates. The alternative is something like Mountaingoat or 2QZQ, where you email or submit a form about what you want, and then they contact you to discuss options, and don't submit you an invoice until all the details are worked out.

    I also am pretty sure that if you go buy something on Amazon or on REI online or something, your card is charged at the time of sale, not at time of shipping. In those cases, the order is shipped usually within 24 hours, so you just don't notice the fact, since for all intents and purposes they both happened within the same small time window.

    As for the lack of phone numbers for many of the vendors, I'll agree that it is a little offputting at times ... but I suppose many of the vendors start small, making gear by hand from their living room or garage. So the only phone they may have is their home/personal phone. I'm not sure I blame them for not putting that on either their public website or on the forums - that just invites random people calling them at odd hours (due to lack of consideration or different time zones), or their numbers getting snagged by search engines and then added to spam lists. However I will say that I'm more than surprised that any vendor that's been around for any period of time wouldn't eventually get a separate line for their business (it's an expense you can write off, after all ). It doesn't cost a lot to get a line added to your cell plan, or add a voip line or something using Vonage or the like, and it goes a long way towards making people feel more legit ordering from you if they know that there's a number to call in case of problems or questions. Even if no one monitors the line


  7. #7
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    As a musician who has ordered several instruments made to my specifications, the luthiers always charge a deposit of a certain amount and when done the rest of the balance is due before shipping. As a contractor I also work in the same way where I take a deposit and when the job is completed I get the remainder due, I usually have the deposit cover the cost of material. I think that would be a great way for the cottage vendors to also do business if you have to wait an extended amount of time for them to make the item.

  8. #8
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    By the way SilverSurf If you looked at my profile you would see I have no ENO products. As you mentioned there 1 or 2 vendors on this site to avoid. How is one to know if no one is going to spell it out...Which ones they are.

    I guess if you don't mind tying up $500.00 while you wait for months for a order to be filled there is no issue. I can afford to but do not like the practice. I suspect a lot people on the site are not in that position by what I have read. I have not had a cottage vendor NOT CHARGE my card upon ordering no matter HOW LONG it takes them to fill the order. So for me that is %100 from 3 different vendors.

    I can tell you this, I bought a $500.00+ product from a cottage vendor NOT on this site and He did not meet his delivery time. He did not answer phones or emails. This left me no option but to complain to paypal who froze his account until the dispute was take care of. Turns out he was very elderly sickly man and was in the hospital.. He was the only one in the business. Could of died but Thank the good Lord he didn't. Long story short but once his account was frozen it did not take him long to call me. He explained what had happened and we worked it out and all is well. If he had passed away I would be stuck with the loss. I am in Maine and he was in Ca.. Not like i was going to go to probate court in Ca and get my money back.

    OK I'm done By putting the idea out there I was wondering if I was the only one feeling this way. I'm hoping the vendors that can afford to wait for the payment until they are getting close to building might make it a little easier on the consumer by doing so.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Philsweep View Post
    As a musician who has ordered several instruments made to my specifications, the luthiers always charge a deposit of a certain amount and when done the rest of the balance is due before shipping. As a contractor I also work in the same way where I take a deposit and when the job is completed I get the remainder due, I usually have the deposit cover the cost of material. I think that would be a great way for the cottage vendors to also do business if you have to wait an extended amount of time for them to make the item.
    This is what I'm talking about.

  10. #10
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    My two cents is I always check out lead times before I place an order. If it is long or I have ANY issues communicating with a vendor be it here or some place else, I do not place an order with them. If I am going to pay someone $ for a product that is "custom" and they can not give me timely communications before I spend $ then I have no confidence they will do so after the fact.

    Yes, I understand that many of these places are one man shows. Yes, I know exactly what it takes to run a small business..been there, done that. But if your customer base is so large that you can't communicate effectively and deliver in a timely manner then you need to reduce the orders you are accepting.

    I also know how hard it is to get my $ back via a credit card or PP after a couple of months have gone by so I will NOT place an order with any vendor that charges my account before the shipment takes place. If a vendor charges my card before shipment then I immediately notify the CC to stop payment then contact the vendor to work out the issues.

    If I use PP then unless communications from a vendor gives me a specific time frame I expect shipment notice within 5 business days. If I don't have that, I notify the vendor they have 24 hours to ship before I contact PP to get my funds back.
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