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My new Maruszczyk---"nitro gloss"?

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, 4000 said:

Just out of interest, what happens if he doesn’t want to give him a refund? 

I doubt he will, he and the buyer are both, perhaps with reason on both sides, invested in their side of the argument now. If I was the buyer, I'd accept that fact, get the issues resolved locally and move on. If I were the builder, I'd be kicking myself for the reputational losses perhaps recognising that the sheer drawn out nature of this process leaves him in a lose/lose situation; if he refunds it says he was wrong and shouldn't have made such an intransigent stand for so long, if he doesn't refund he remains the bad guy for leaving such an unhappy £2000 buyer. This feels like a Talkbass thread to be honest, there seem to have been a number of luthiers who have fallen into this trap; too much success too quickly comes back and kicks you. He's a person, probably a decent person with a family and people who depend on him for their livelihoods, and there's no doubt he's a talented builder. I hope he comes out of this OK whatever the rights and wrongs of this situation, and despite what I said in my previous post about his inability to realise what's important in business. There's no doubt he brought some colourful instruments to the party and, irrespective of his apparent low social skills (hardly a crime and hardly unusual in craftsmen) and occasional mess-ups, he clearly made a lot of buyers very happy.   

Edited by Beedster
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1 hour ago, 4000 said:

Just out of interest, what happens if he doesn’t want to give him a refund? 

Doesn’t a company have to within a certain time period in European law if a product is damaged?

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2 minutes ago, OliverBlackman said:

Doesn’t a company have to within a certain time period in European law if a product is damaged?

I am pretty sure that is the case.

Lets be honest here, it’s £2k. Now I know there are overheads, workforce payments equipment wear and tear etc. But it will be priced to make a profit. He could take the bass back, sell it as a discount B-stock and still probably not lose any money, or use it as a trade show/demo bass.

I see at least 3-4 people here saying they will now not spend money with him a that’s cost him £5-10k - bad business.

As guys have said, Sandberg, Overwater, Shuker, we have some talented builders on here who would do you a way better bass - everyone of them would have treated a customer better and guilt something just as good if not better.

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47 minutes ago, Beedster said:

I doubt he will, he and the buyer are both, perhaps with reason on both sides, invested in their side of the argument now. If I was the buyer, I'd accept that fact, get the issues resolved locally and move on. If I were the builder, I'd be kicking myself for the reputational losses perhaps recognising that the sheer drawn out nature of this process leaves him in a lose/lose situation; if he refunds it says he was wrong and shouldn't have made such an intransigent stand for so long, if he doesn't refund he remains the bad guy for leaving such an unhappy £2000 buyer. This feels like a Talkbass thread to be honest, there seem to have been a number of luthiers who have fallen into this trap; too much success too quickly comes back and kicks you. He's a person, probably a decent person with a family and people who depend on him for their livelihoods, and there's no doubt he's a talented builder. I hope he comes out of this OK whatever the rights and wrongs of this situation, and despite what I said in my previous post about his inability to realise what's important in business. There's no doubt he brought some colourful instruments to the party and, irrespective of his apparent low social skills (hardly a crime and hardly unusual in craftsmen) and occasional mess-ups, he clearly made a lot of buyers very happy.   

I think his personal situation is irrelevant. He offers a product, that product wasn’t what it should be and therefore he needs to swiftly rectify that for the customer. The fact he hasn’t is his own failure. 

It sounds like he doesn’t have any input in the actual build of the basses so he should be making sure that business runs smoothly. 
 

Whether this thread is like something on talkbass or not, it is important that users share their experiences to help others. I do hope potential buyers are put off and other builders who care more about their product/ customers are rewarded. 

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Posted (edited)
34 minutes ago, OliverBlackman said:


 

Whether this thread is like something on talkbass or not, it is important that users share their experiences to help others. I do hope potential buyers are put off and other builders who care more about their product/ customers are rewarded. 

Unfortunately, and with no disrespect to the OP, we are only getting one side of the argument (I don’t see Adrian coming on here, so this will always be thus). A big part of the problem here, I think, is the ‘joy’ of Google translate, with English not being the mother tongue of either party and some finesse and idiom being lost (I could of course be wrong). Add to this the BC collective ire being piled on and we have torches and pitchforks ready to go.
 

My own personal experience has been mixed, but on the whole, positive. However, I had a question that I needed answering about the pickup wiring in one of my Elwoods a while back and I felt was getting stonewalled a bit. As I was looking to replace the existing pickup with a Delano, I got the very nice chaps there involved (the wonderful Reinhard) and they got the answer I was after. Similarly, a friend of mine was in discussion with Adrian and it was becoming hard going, so he got a German speaking friend to phone and it was sorted super quick. This is of course not ideal for a company that sells internationally and not what you want. This is clearly an area that needs addressing if this kind of situation is to be avoided in the future.

I hope the OP gets some sort of resolution that he is happy with, but I imagine it will always leave a bitter taste, which is a shame, no matter how much has been spent.

Edited by ezbass
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Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, ezbass said:

Unfortunately, and with no disrespect to the OP, we are only getting one side of the argument (I don’t see Adrian coming on here, so this will always be thus). A big part of the problem here, I think, is the ‘joy’ of Google translate, with English not being the mother tongue of either party and some finesse and idiom being lost (I could of course be wrong). Add to this the BC collective ire being piled on and we have torches and pitchforks ready to go.
 

My own personal experience has been mixed, but on the whole, positive. However, I had a question that I needed answering about the pickup wiring in one of my Elwoods a while back and I felt was getting stonewalled a bit. As I was looking to replace the existing pickup with a Delano, I got the very nice chaps there involved (the wonderful Reinhard) and they got the answer I was after. Similarly, a friend of mine was in discussion with Adrian and it was becoming hard going, so he got a German speaking friend to phone and it was sorted super quick. This is of course not ideal for a company that sells internationally and not what you want. This is clearly an area that needs addressing if this kind of situation is to be avoided in the future.

I hope the OP gets some sort of resolution that he is happy with, but I imagine it will always leave a bitter taste, which is a shame, no matter how much has been spent.

We did address the language barrier point In various guises including some form of translation ability if you want to be an international company, but in your above post the key words were ‘mixed’ treatment, ‘stonewalled’ and (sorry if i presume wrong) is over access to something as simple as a wiring diagram, which is likely to be sat on a file in a pdf format, then it does point to something systemically wrong unfortunately.

Email transcripts form both sides were also posted.....

Edited by Cuzzie
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Back when this all began - there wasn't actually much wrong with the bass.. 

 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, Drax said:

Back when this all began - there wasn't actually much wrong with the bass.. 

 

 

 

Apart from the electronics......

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1 minute ago, Drax said:

Back when this all began - there wasn't actually much wrong with the bass.. 

 

 

 

A fair point, but I think it's more the fact that for a £2k bass 'there's not that much wrong with it' doesn't really cut it. Then you add in the attitude of the company/manufacturer...

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Yeah my point was really - it's amazing / depressing how what started as some small gripes has turned into a massive drama, when it didn't need to.  

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32 minutes ago, Drax said:

Yeah my point was really - it's amazing / depressing how what started as some small gripes has turned into a massive drama, when it didn't need to.  

Customer service, in a nutshell.

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2 hours ago, Cuzzie said:

We did address the language barrier point In various guises including some form of translation ability if you want to be an international company, but in your above post the key words were ‘mixed’ treatment, ‘stonewalled’ and (sorry if i presume wrong) is over access to something as simple as a wiring diagram, which is likely to be sat on a file in a pdf format, then it does point to something systemically wrong unfortunately.

Email transcripts form both sides were also posted.....

I thought it might be worth rounding it up and saying it again (it's not like we don't repeat ourselves here 😂) as it was descending into a bit of a ranting 💩storm.

Those 2 words are spot on (your presumption is correct); that was the feeling I got at the time (I've since bought another bass from PP and it was all sweetness and light - apart from the useless courier at this end). I did receive a standard pdf document of various wirings on various pickup types used (handy for future reference) but my rotary 3 way was a non standard, custom request, with the wiring done at the factory and wasn't known at the office/shop and it's this separation of those premises which I think leads to comms issues. However, once a German speaker got involved, those problems seemed to disappear. Far from ideal for non German speakers and not ideal for a company that trades internationally (I think I might have just repeated the nub, yet again, sorry).

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So I've been following this thread and I think this has grown maybe an arm and half a leg but I can understand why many are annoyed by the customer service provided in this case.

I've long been tempted by ordering Maruszczyk as they seem to get great reviews and they one I played seemed very well put together. I think I would still order from them and knowing what I know now (particularly from @ezbass) would be to try and establish the best way to communicate with Adrian early doors. I think English not being the first language hasn't helped so maybe going with German or Polish would aid the process. Not sure if it would help but that would be my approach

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Posted (edited)

I don't know much about this case but surely the current 'unprecedented' times might have an influence - one only has to look around to see household names cutting back on retail outlets and others going into receivership. 

At this time I would not expect anything like normal service unless I was buying something which was already in stock in a retail outlet or on line store.

That doesn't excuse the issues here but I suspect it has a bearing on it. Just remember that musical instruments are classed as luxury goods and usually the industry demonstrates that when a recession starts - we are entering/already in the mother of all economic crises so problems should not be totally surprising. 

Edited by drTStingray
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7 hours ago, drTStingray said:

I don't know much about this case but surely the current 'unprecedented' times might have an influence - one only has to look around to see household names cutting back on retail outlets and others going into receivership. 

At this time I would not expect anything like normal service unless I was buying something which was already in stock in a retail outlet or on line store.

That doesn't excuse the issues here but I suspect it has a bearing on it. Just remember that musical instruments are classed as luxury goods and usually the industry demonstrates that when a recession starts - we are entering/already in the mother of all economic crises so problems should not be totally surprising. 

I get what you are saying, but, this seemed to happen outside these times. As people have said, even in these times customer relations can be handled differently rather than be fobbed off essentially saying (and I am Para phrasing) “I am one of the greatest builders in the world, and you won’t find this anywhere, you should be glad I bestowed this bass upon you for the princely sum of a large wad of your hard earned cash.”

 

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8 hours ago, drTStingray said:

At this time I would not expect anything like normal service unless I was buying something which was already in stock in a retail outlet or on line store.

The only real problem with this bass is customer service. It is a beautiful bass with a couple of very minor issues, this whole thing could have been fixed with a couple of friendly emails.

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52 minutes ago, Woodinblack said:

The only real problem with this bass is customer service. It is a beautiful bass with a couple of very minor issues, this whole thing could have been fixed with a couple of friendly emails.

If you go to a restaurant and find a dead fly in the soup, they'll apologise and replace it.  If you've had a bad meal and complain, there's a good chance you'll get a part of the bill comped.  There seems to be this sliding scale of complaint vs cost and where tangibles are concerned, you expect the goods to arrive in a flawless/pristine condition and to the expected build specs.  Cars or guitars, they'll try and put things right rather than replace, because it's more cost effective, but nevertheless, the product should be pristine at the point of sale (which in the OPs case is on delivery).

As @Beedster posted earlier, both parties are now invested (an entrenched)  with arguments.  As I understand EU regulations, the seller is obligated to repair or replace free of charge or give a reduction or a full refund.  Under EU law you have 14 days to return the goods without justifcation/reason.  If Maruszczyk want to do the right thing, if it were me (and if I was desperate for one of these basses, which I'm really not), I'd press for a return/replacement; this way the OP gets what he wants and Maruszcyk comes out of this with a bit of face restored. 

Irrespective whether the issues are tiny, they're issues.  Perhaps the sceptic in me would worry whether the replacement bass was 100% and not filled with unseen defect (akin to the chef flobbing into my cold macaroni cheese).

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My take...

there wasn't really much wrong with the bass, just a few things that needed attention. 

The builder is a bit brusque and not good at customer service. 

The buyer started a conversation starting like he was looking for things to complain about, builder probably reacted to that. I'm sure he's had buyers like that before, get £50 for some small scratch and then find a million more things they want rectified...

The buyer is actually happy with the bass except for a few things. 

The builder is still not good at customer service. 

It all esculates on Basschat to the point where the buyer and the builder having a mature conversation about what would sort it out isn't possible. €100 back for crack in the nitro when it arrives is probably fair... if not the buyer would need to say what would be. This thread, and language/culture problems means that that conversation probably doesn't happen. 

Builder is still not good at customer service, and annoyed about this thread. 

 

My take is that if the buyer and builder both spoke the same language this whole thing probably wouldn't have happened. Some of the subtly is being lost. Blunt german/polish comes across as ruder than it would be in german, spanish into english also looses some of its preciseness. 
I wonder too if the builder has ended up growing too quickly, and has got to the point where he needs customer service help. They seem to have a business model based around a user customisable custom shop - when he was selling a £800 bass the quality difference people expect is different to a £2000 bass. But from the builders POV the £1k of extra options prob isn't adding much to the profit. He's seeing it as a £800 that people are choosing to spend more on to get fancy pickups etc.  

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1 hour ago, NancyJohnson said:

Under EU law you have 14 days to return the goods without justifcation/reason

Actually this does not apply to custom orders.  It's in the list of exemptions to the 14 day rule.  The 2 year EU guarantee does apply however (goods must be repaired or replaced at no cost to the consumer).  You would have to look up the law in the country it was purchased in to know the details of how to enforce that.  If it's cross border the credit card company or PayPal would probably get a result easier.  Although a lot of businesses on the continent ask for payment by bank transfer to avoid such issues...

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7 minutes ago, No. 8 Wire said:

Actually this does not apply to custom orders.  It's in the list of exemptions to the 14 day rule.  The 2 year EU guarantee does apply however (goods must be repaired or replaced at no cost to the consumer).  You would have to look up the law in the country it was purchased in to know the details of how to enforce that.  If it's cross border the credit card company or PayPal would probably get a result easier.  Although a lot of businesses on the continent ask for payment by bank transfer to avoid such issues...

Happy to be educated on this, but the topic of custom order.

If the bass or product is assembled from multiple parts which are offered as stock and normal, is it truly custom?
It seems to me that the manufacturer could put the options he offers together and sell it, but then it’s called stock?

Surely it’s custom (maybe bespoke Is the word) if they are doing something which is not normally offered in their line, or altering something they have especially for the customer.

If I ring up a store and they only have 2 colours, white and black of a bass, but the company they stock have other colours and I fancy electric pink, and it’s in the standard range and they order it from me, is that custom?

Not trying to be a bell piece, but trying to, in my own head differentiate between ‘custom’ and ‘assembled from stock part options’

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4 minutes ago, Cuzzie said:

Happy to be educated on this, but the topic of custom order.

If the bass or product is assembled from multiple parts which are offered as stock and normal, is it truly custom?
It seems to me that the manufacturer could put the options he offers together and sell it, but then it’s called stock?

Surely it’s custom (maybe bespoke Is the word) if they are doing something which is not normally offered in their line, or altering something they have especially for the customer.

If I ring up a store and they only have 2 colours, white and black of a bass, but the company they stock have other colours and I fancy electric pink, and it’s in the standard range and they order it from me, is that custom?

Not trying to be a bell piece, but trying to, in my own head differentiate between ‘custom’ and ‘assembled from stock part options’

That's a good question.  The word the EU directive uses is 'personalised' or 'an order to the customers specification'.

So, I would say this bass definitely falls into that category.

Your ordering in the right standard colour from the manufacturer would not be a custom order as that item is offered as stock.

Of course, there may be further guarantees offered in the country of sale (DE?) That would be over and above the EU minimum, so that would have to be looked at too.

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I don’t think discussion of the legalities is relevant, it would now come down to a war of words anyway. A legal definition of custom in this case would take a while to clarify and cost money to someone, as would so many other factors.
 

Buyer walk away, seller learn a big lesson. Basschat members you’ve been warned, don’t f**k with Adrian :)

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1 minute ago, Beedster said:

I don’t think discussion of the legalities is relevant, it would now come down to a war of words anyway. A legal definition of custom in this case would take a while to clarify and cost money to someone, as would so many other factors.

I think it is relevant.  The legal definition of custom isn't difficult it's in the directive, pretty cut and dried. However it's not needed as the customer isn't claiming no fault return, he's claiming a return/partial refund based on a defect. This is covered by his legal guarantee.

If this was bought from Germany, they are pretty hot on consumer rights. It wouldn't be that difficult to enforce barring language difficulties.

That all being said, it seems crazy to me.  Surely the manufacturer should just accept it back, repair the finish and send it back, that's all he's after isn't it?

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8 minutes ago, No. 8 Wire said:

That's a good question.  The word the EU directive uses is 'personalised' or 'an order to the customers specification'.

So, I would say this bass definitely falls into that category.

Your ordering in the right standard colour from the manufacturer would not be a custom order as that item is offered as stock.

Of course, there may be further guarantees offered in the country of sale (DE?) That would be over and above the EU minimum, so that would have to be looked at too.

Thanks for that, typically woolly words, probably the big manufacturers like Fender have all these options if you go ‘up’ the line as it were, hence it will be more stock for them.

I had a play with the configurator, and crikey there are some random things on there - they charge you for a nitro finish on the neck - there is no option not to. Extra charge for Carbon rods in the neck when most people have that as standard these days, charge for nitro finish on the headstock, like it’s not part of the neck........ If it’s about extra work, weirdly no extra charge for a J rout in a PJ as opposed to just a P.

Anyway, I agree with the fact that it is relevant, to this conversation, but also to extrapolate to other things, situations should they arise.

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