I don't want to turn this thread into a bitch session, bout the L vendor, who normally get's rave revies from this community, has let me down several times during the past few weeks.
Calls and emails not return, bo orders cancelled at my request, but no notification sent, returns not refunded, etc.
Just a burp on the radar, or a trend to be dealt with?
Hopefully just a blip. A couple of my recent orders were out of stock and got placed on back order - no big deal. I called Ashley this morning and cancelled one of them, friendly service and no problem.
I had the same experience but only within the last two weeks. My understanding is that they are working with taking over part of the Fun Projects business. They have a trailer load of inventory that they are trying to get unloaded and onto new shelving and set up. I think this is just a short blip on the radar while they are trying to improve the products they offer and help keep the Model T business growing.
I placed a large order this week and had it in two days without a missing part...just chiming in.
I hope they recover. I have had good service from them in the past.
My most recent order was April 24. It was shipped on April 24.
I've ordered several items from them already this year. The only issues I've had were because some of their suppliers are very behind. Great service from them otherwise.
As efficient, friendly and customer service-oriented as they have been for the last 20 years that I've been doing business with them. NONE BETTER!!!
I had a back order item this last order and they offered free shipping! I declined, why? Cause it's a hobby and the end if my life my parts will be here next week sometime.
Not the end of my life it was supposed to say
I get faster and better service from them than I do from my local Fastenal dealer. They're Aces!
I keep getting the wrong parts in my orders.... What is in the box doesn't match the invoice. Its getting old.
I had one item shipped to me that should have been shipped to another customer. Invoice made out to other customer, addressed to me. So I went to the PO and sent it to its correct destination via Priority Mail on my dime. Let Ashley know and forwarded the customer the tracking number. Even though there was no need to, Ashley apologized and gave me a credit to use on my next order. Glad to help out good folks who I hope stay in business for generations.
They are the greatest. Quick orders and knowledgeable advice from their techs.
This gets a little old after a while when somebody brings up something about vendors and starts a totally pointless discussion about absolutely NOTHING! LET IT GO AND GET A LIFE!
Give it time John. These treads usually have to progress through everyone patting themselves on the back then patting each other on the back.
We're halfway there!
My order from 4/29 still says " Holding for parts". Since it also marked to cancel backorders, I'm not sure what that means. I figure I'll wait a full month and then call to see what is up if it hasn't shipped by then. No big deal...
I seldom order anything from anybody but I will make this comment: You can't just call job service and get someone with the knowledge to work on 100 year old stuff whether it is stocking shelves or machining idle jets. That is one of the problems with all these hobby related businesses no matter how big they grow.
It is difficult to nearly impossible to even hire somebody to pack and ship orders because if they don't know the difference between a carburetor and a coil you probably have to be there baby sitting them to the point where you would have got it done faster yourself. I know I don't have time to train anybody to do anything, I end up for the most part opening the box it came in and packing the box it is going out in, trying to keep up with people who want tracking numbers and questions answered and phone calls that nobody could deal with but me -- let alone get anything done in the shop.
Also, I don't know how the economy is where you are but we are consistently named as one of the best places in America to live; they are building houses every place you can build one, there are jobs -- good, well paying jobs -- posted on every site in town and I could not compete with the $26-30 an hour starting wage they are paying for some of the jobs here and the $50 and up for some. I can't even compete with the $15.00 an hour McDonalds jobs and all you are going to get at that kind of wages is somebody too lazy to get a higher paying job or somebody too stupid to learn anything or with a resume' that reads, "Fired for theft and absenteeism" let alone somebody who wants to read "The Basics of Antique Carburetor Restoration," by Uncle Stan on his off hours.
I'm sure everybody else in the business is that way, too.
Again, was not trying to turn this into a exchange of horror stories or "atta boys", just noticed some recent issues that went against the grain from what I was hearing and reading about them in general.
If it's a growth spurt issue, then I'll wait a month or so for my next order for my next project and see if the dust settles. Was just wondering if I was alone in my scenario. Sounds like I'm not, we al agree they are better than any alternative, and we all hope it gets back to where it used to be.
I too had to wait a bit for some back order parts to come it but I am very satisfied with the service and quality of the parts. Between my T and my wife's to do list the wait was no problem. I really like this vendor.
The answer to a lot of business complaints -- no matter what business -- is to just open up a competitive business, provide a better product at a lesser price with better service, open available longer hours and no concern about making a profit and run the competition out of business.
It's the easy answer!!!!!!!!!!
If you have not already done so call Don Lang and speak directly to him.
I have known Don since 1986 and I can assure you
whatever your problem is, he will make it right.
Robert Brough: I ordered some flip top oilers for my springs, and they were on back order and not expected till the 11th and got a confirmation that they are on the way almost a week early. Great Service, luv them all for the great service and what else can you say
Well, lookie here!!! Just what somebody needs!
It would take about a mil and a half to do that one.
Or if that doesn't suit you, how about a carburetor restoration and sales business??? I'd sell it for enuff money!! Then the people who think it is OK to call me at 11 PM on Sunday night with a question can call the new owner!!!
I'd take a hundred grand cash!!!
Hell of an idea!!!!
Should have thought of it before!!! =)
Well, no takers so I guess I'll just go eat a $5 heart attack at some fast food joint and come back and go back to work. Friday night, I've got several hours to go. All day tomorrow too but I'm going to take Sunday off from the carb business and go work at the ranch. Back in the shop Monday.
Hard to find somebody young enough to do this and old enough to have the money to buy me out that wants to work 50-70 hours a week. I like it (or I wouldn't do it) but it will fold up when they plant me and there will probably be an auction where they will throw a double handful of my expensive carburetors in a box and sell it. Because I am the only auctioneer anywhere in the country who would have a clue about what they are and what they are worth and I'll be udders to the sun in a cheap cardboard box waiting for the ride along the Yellowstone to the bone yard at the ranch.
I have had fast orders and good service. Tim
Well Crap!!! I waited all day by the phone and checked my email several times today to see if anybody was wanting to write me a big check for the business. No luck. Only thing I got today was a couple emails wanting to know where their carb was and one phone call looking for free advice on how to fix theirs without spending any money.
After five now so most people are off for the weekend, government employees been off most of yesterday, too, retired been off all week. Only people working are the self employed so I'm headed back to the shop for a couple more hours. Most of the self employed are far younger than I am, most of the guys my age haven't worked for years.
I just thought sure somebody who doesn't like the way other people run their business would be champing at the bit to buy one so they could run it their way, profit be damned!!
Story of my life. False hopes for profit, success and fame.
Back to the shop, back to the shop.
I was going to take tomorrow off and go work up the hay field I've been trying to get a tractor in for three months and never have had time but it's supposed to be about 35 for a high so I think I'll work on carburetors instead.
I just shipped one to Maine for a 1910 Hupmobile. Gorgeous carb -- should have took a picture! It was a Breeze carb.
We are spoiled rotten in the Model T community by our vendors and the relatively plentiful supply of good used and remaining NOS parts!
I am a member of the HCCA (even though I don't own a brass car) and get their newsletter. You should see the efforts they go through to keep their cars on the road and as period authentic as possible. Just try finding parts for a Cartercar, a Brush, a Mitchell, or any pre-WW1 car besides a Model T Ford!
Thankyou to all of our vendors, suppliers, and fabricators that keep our Ts on the road!
That's true, Mark. It is also true that there are fewer and fewer people doing restoration work for a lot of those oddball cars. It is far easier to just sell some kind of a replacement re-pop part for a common car like a Model T than it is to machine itty bitty brass parts for carburetors (or other parts) that just don't exist anywhere -- or at least can't be found if they do exist.
I don't know who is going to do brass carbs when I pull the plug (or get the plug pulled for me - at my age the plug usually gets pulled unexpectedly); the other guys I know who are in the "Restoration of Carburetors" business are as old or older than I am or only do Model T carbs. I don't know of anybody who will take on the stuff I do.
I've tried to get some people interested in doing carbs, especially NH's at a higher level of quality than much of what is being done; had a couple people interested but they didn't want to invest any money in tools or time in learning how to do them so I dunno what will happen.
This stuff looks like scrap brass to a lot of people and they would happy to sell my $1000 carburetors for $3 a pound.
By the way, I noticed your comment about the HCCA. I paid my dues when we had the auction with the Reo last year and have just given up on ever getting a membership or the magazine out of them. They took my money for the ad and the membership. I've contacted them several times about it, they won't even respond anymore. I must have stepped on somebody's toes or something.
Well, off to the shop, I got another email last night about a carb I haven't got done so better get out there and get to work.
I'm glad for the business; it's pretty satisfying to be able to get some things working and I can always use the money. I just can't work 16 hours a day 7 days a week like I used to.
Off to the shop, off to the shop.
It's impossible to do business and please everyone, just as it's impossible to do everything perfectly or live a life free of trouble. The best an honest and conscientious outfit can do is to be fair and reasonable correcting problems when they inevitably occur. My experience with Lang's ? Business as usual. I've found them helpful, pleasant and reliable "beyond the call of duty "
And that's the intent of this thread, just to make sure that this was a burp in the road and my situation on this one situation is not up to any companies standards of customer service, let alone what I have been reading about God's ggift to the T world.
And, probably, it's all me, so don't feel like everyone has to jump on the soapbox and defend them. I'm just inquiring before I plase signifigant orders for my next project. They certainly to be several notches above the other guy.
Ordered a brake rivet tool and it arrived timely. No instruction. Call for instructions as to what of the 4 rivet setting punches I was to use. Told to call back next day. Called back next day, was given Don's voice mail. Never got call back or answer to my problem. Set two rivets with tool and the casting snapped in two. Sturggled through rest of rivets with vie and clamps. Emailed them with question about return, if it made sense to pay postage on a broken part that I no longer needed a replacement on. Told I have to speak to Don and he would call me. Never did. Called again and told to mail up the broken part andr eturn it and they would reimburse me for the postage. Didn't make sense to spend $7 to mail back a broken part, but if they need to get credit for their supplier, it is what it is. Mailed back broken part in padded envelope and it arrived torn open and no parts inside. Ashley called and said no refund could be issued.
So, I'm out the cost of the part, the cost of the return shipping which I feel really didn't need to be shipped at all.
I know they are not the post office and it is not their fault it arrived missing. I'm not holding a gun to anyones head demanding anything.
I just felt the whole telephone call, email, only Don can approve a return, must mail it back for credit thing was not what I expected from the leader in customer service.
It's over. I'm not soliciting allies. I don't want this turn into a take sides isue. Just got a few PM's wanting to know the details and here they are.
As far as I am concerned, it's over and I am comfortable that this was just a one time stumble and I'll vontinue to give them opportunities to supply my needs.
My story. I had an order sent to New Zealand, and when it arrived, the valve covers I ordered were missing but there were valve cover gaskets there that I didn't order. So I checked with Ashley via e-mail, and yes, they had made a mistake. Before I could e-mail back that it was no biggie, and not to worry, two valve covers were in the post to NZ at Lang's expense. Outstanding customer service. I'll deal with them always!
All this over a $7 part...give me a break.
Sorry you have had these experiences. For over a decade Don & Family have provide me with exceptional service and technical information. Like real life there have been issues which were handled quickly, professionally and respectfully. As far as I know they are still putting erasers on pencils because we all suffer from the "Human Condition." Best of luck with your future T projects.
I just got back another restored carb 26 nh from Langs put it on and it doesn't run right but have no concerns that they will make it right. Plan on sending it back tomorrow and I doubt I will have any issue. They have been very helpful and fair to me!! Tim
Have to give credit when due. Received email from Stephen this evening indicating that full credit for the tool purchase and shipping will be given.
Trust this was just bump in the road of life.
The last thing I received from Langs, I forgot I even ordered.
I had a customer ask me to look over his T sometime in October because he was having trouble starting it. I noticed his ignition switch was a little sensitive. I decided to go ahead and order a new switch because either I'd put it in for him or I would just hang onto it because it never hurts to have a spare in inventory. About late April I finally received the switch because it was back ordered. When I received the email that it was available and ready to ship, I forgot all about it as I've not been asked about it by the customer or by Lang's since.
I've never had a problem with them, and I hope I can expect the same results in the future.
I was there this past February at their warehouse with Don Lang personally helping me pick out usedparts made of Unabtaium from from his inventory .This is for my first model T which I purchased in November. I've owned collector cars since 1983 but never one from this era and I can tell you I never had service like that from any vendor or any supplier in this hobby before ,those people are the best!
Placed my order last Monday morning, it was in Oklahoma before lunch on Wednesday. Can't ask for better service than that, especially since the parts were needed for the Oklahoma Special T's workday on Thursday. Ed
Placed an order on 5/16 shipped 5/17 received 5/18 yup service as usual
NEVER ship a heavy tool or part made of metal in a padded envelope.It won't get there most of the time. Box with padding. yes it would have cost a 1.00 more or so,but it would have got there.
Just passing along hard learned experience.
When I saw the thread I was afraid it was another mac's thread!