Laguna Tools Jointer Planer Combo and Bandsaw My Worst Nightmare In Progress
I recently purchased a 16" jointer planer combo and 18" 3000 Series Bandsaw from Laguna Tools. It has turned into my worst nightmare. I have spent $6,245.83 on this order. It arrived damaged and I properly noted it on the freight bill. I contacted laguna about the most obvious damage to the band saw. The upper flywheel had come apart in shipping. I rebuilt it and it seems to work fine now.
My nightmare starts really with the jointer. In short this machine should edge join using the fence, face join, and plane. All three functions have defects due to either freight damage of very poor quality control issues. The exception seems to be the fence. It seems to be a straight quality control problem. The way it is packaged couldn't, in my opinion, have caused damage from shipping. It has a buckle/twist in the center throwing out the fence 3/32 of an inch. I have pictures and have sent them to laguna. Second the jointer tables are out. I spent about 3 hours trying to adjust the out feed table to be level with the cutter head. I is close but doesn't have enough adjustment in it to make it right. I didn't bother going on to the in feed table yet. I decided to check the planer for parallel. It cuts heaver on the left side by an 1/8" of an inch! Totally out.
Here is my complant. I feel there customer service has performed very poorly. One person seemed to show concern and actually called me back yet he had no power to make any decisions, in fact everyone so far even the "manager" has to talk to the own to authorize a return for a damaged item. What? Really? This is simple. The item arrived in an unacceptable condition. Either the unit is out from damage or poor quality control. I don't care but it is not my problem. Yet it is. I am also not going to start drilling out pins as I was told to give more adjustment room for the out feed table. They seem to expect me to do all this work for free. I want to know from others if you think this is right. They have so far refused to take the machine back and give a refund. Which is what I have demanded and I still do. I was threatened or reminded more than once that I would have to return the damaged/defective machine at my freight cost ($400?) plus take a 25% ($1561.45) restocking fee???! That doesn't sound like standing behind your product to me. I did get and offer finally, after me calling them over and over, of a swop out. They send me a new one and I return the old one. If I don't accept then too bad for me I guess.
I am now waiting to hear back from them to talk to the owners to see if they will do the right thing. They where already supposed to talk to them and get back to me which didn't happen. I am totally frustrated and want to know what YOU the woodworking community suggest I should do. Please give me some realistic feedback. I don't want to bash Laguna I just want them to do the right thing and accept that they have not satisfied this customer and should just take this return.
Sorry to hear about your disappointing experience. I don't understand one thing - if the manufacturer has offered to finally replace the products, then what is the problem? Are they trying to charge you something for a replacement? If I misunderstood and they are not following through or trying to charge you additional fees, then I would do a few things:
1) Start documenting every interaction you have with this company - specific dates and times you called, who you talked to, etc. Always get names or employee numbers.
2) Don't do anything to alter the machines, unless it is from written instructions sent by the manufacturer (see documentation above)
3) Get a copy, if you don't have already, of the freight bill where you noted the damage.
4) Start communicating in writing, preferably a well written complaint letter, sent certified mail, to the company's President/CEO of US operations (take the issue directly to the top where the decision can be made) addressing the specific problems with the machines, what you have done to try and remedy the situation (calls to customer service, etc.), and the specific problems you have encountered with their customer service (freight charges, restocking fees, etc.). Make sure you also highlight any safety issues which are present as a result of damage/manufacturer's defects.
5) You could attempt to dispute the charge, if you paid by credit card (this can get a bit tricky, but could be worth pursuing)
6) If the manufacturer continues their course of dealing over the next couple of weeks/months and you have documented everything as I mentioned above, then contact your State Attorney General's office (http://www.oag.state.tx.us/consumer/resources.shtml
). There are a lot of consumer protection laws that exist, you just have to be willing to do some homework.
You have spent a significant amount of money on products which are damaged and/or defective, at no fault of your own. You need to pursue this problem as a legal matter if you want true restitution. Do not settle for restocking fees or paying shipping charges if these damages are not your fault. Well written communication is better than phone conversations, and try not to get combative with the manufacturer. If necessary, consult an attorney - you spent $6,200 on defective/damaged equipment, you may need to spend some money to get this problem fixed; I would just make certain not to pay any more money to the manufacturer.