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Has anyone had trouble ordering and actually getting items from a Woodcraft retail store?

On March 7th, I went into the Woodcraft retail store in Woburn, MA. to purchase the Rikon slow speed grinder. I was excited to find out they were going to give me the February sale price. Due to the snows, they extended the sale price. Well, they didn't have one in the store so, they had to order it. Okay, I was disappointed, but what are you going to do? So, we ordered it and I was told about a week.

Now, here we are. Saturday will be 3 weeks and I still don't have it. They still don't have it. I was told last week the manager would call me…. never did. I was told today, the manage was on another line. Then seconds later I was told he wasn't there. They clerk on the phone also told be that they don't order until the end of the month. WTF?

So, now, I have to wait until tomorrow for the manager to call me. Which, I doubt he will.

I try very hard to support small business and not always order online or from big box stores, but if this is the kind of service they give….. I don't see Woodcraft lasting very much longer.
 

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Ugh, the dreaded Woburn Woodcraft. I feel your pain. I gave up going there about three years ago. They still send junk mail.
 

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Not gonna say I've been super impressed with the crew at the Woburn woodcraft either. They are pleasant and generally willing to answer questions or point me towards something, but not really outgoing, with the exception of the one part time guy with a kick ass beard who is/was a student at north Bennet street school. He is always great to talk to. Not sure if he works there anymore. Also I haven't been since they moved locations, so maybe it's a little better than it was. Either way, it HAS to be better than the rockler in Cambridge…
My advice is to buy online whenever you can from either woodcraft.com or a better site.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
So, I called them again today. This time I got to speak to the manager by not telling the clerk what I was calling about.

He told me the reason it hasn't come in yet that shipping from overseas on the west coast has been slow due to some kind of union issues. I know that there is some truth to the shipping issues from what I do with the Merchant Marine industry. So, maybe it's true. My biggest beef was why I told another week every time I called? Why was I continually being blown off? Not getting answers. Not getting return calls. I'm a reasonable guy. Tell me the truth and I'll wait. I prefer to support local retail instead of big box and online ordering, but behavior like this just makes me want to take my money elsewhere.

In the end, he offered me the floor model. At first, I said I'll take it. I need to sharpen my tools and get to work on my 2×4 Challenge project. But now that I've thought about it…. I don't know if I want a tool that every tool geek has walked up and flipped the power switch and spun the weeks a million times. So, I think I'm going to call again tomorrow and take a pass on the floor model.
 

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Did they cut you a deal on the floor model at least? I wouldn't worry too much about the motor. Those things are pretty simple beasts, and you'd know before the return period was up whether or not you've got a lemon. In the meantime, wanna come use mine? If you're sharpening turning tools, I've got it set up with a Wolverine, and I'm just in Sudbury. PM me if you're interested.
 

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Like you I would like to buy from local business, even if that business is a franchise. My local Woodcraft has been one terrible experience after another. I stopped shopping there a little over a year ago. The employees are off putting.

I would look at Amazon for the tool. The time frame they give you is accurate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I drive up there on Saturday. I tell the clerk behind the counter why I'm there and he has no idea what I'm talking about. They are not allowed to sell the floor models. :eyeroll: I asked him to get the manager out here or at least on the phone. Meanwhile, I go look at the floor model. This unit was not going to be an acceptable option. The wheels were dinged a little. The machine itself was filthy and just not in "new" condition. The manager is not available. So, the clerk offers to cancel the order and give me a rain check on the price. At least one employee offered something beyond a stupid stare and shoulder shrug. He looks up the expected delivery and tells me it's now May 22nd!! So, we've gone from 1 week to almost 3 months. WTF?

I was so pissed off, I left before I did or said something I'd regret later. I should have cancelled the order, but it was on a Visa gift card that I didn't have on me. (this is my fault. I should have brought it with me but it was in my other sweatshirt) Later, when my head doesn't feel like it's going to explode, I'm going to call the lack of management skills manager and cancel the order. Now, I'll loose the sale price ($40 off) and order it elsewhere, but I'd like to get back to work on my lathe sometime this year. Worst is that I called the Walpole store. They have 7 or 8 in stock, but can't give me the sale price.

Did they cut you a deal on the floor model at least? I wouldn t worry too much about the motor. Those things are pretty simple beasts, and you d know before the return period was up whether or not you ve got a lemon. In the meantime, wanna come use mine? If you re sharpening turning tools, I ve got it set up with a Wolverine, and I m just in Sudbury. PM me if you re interested.

- MrFid
No.. they couldn't offer me a discount on the floor model as I was already getting a sale price. The sad thing is that I was ready to drop another $100. while there.

Thanks for the offer. I'll drop you a PM. :) I might push my luck and ask for a quick tutorial while there.
 

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Wow, If I worked at the Walpole store and heard your story, I'd be bending over backwards to try and "fix" the other store's screw-up. I'd be trying like crazy to get you as a good customer AWAY FROM the Woburn store.

I never surprises me to find out that some people just dont have any idea what GOOD customer service is!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The Woodcraft odyssey has ended, I drove up there today, for the last time mind you, and cancelled the order. The young man that helped me out seemed nice enough. So, I decided not to go all nuclear on him. He gave me a rain check to get it at the sale price at a later date. he then told me that cannot credit a gift card. I expected that. So I said that cash was fine. Nope. He can't do that either. He offered to credit one of my other credit cards. I simply said that that wasn't acceptable. I will only accept cash as I didn't want them monkeying with my credit card. He then told me only the manager can do a cash refund. I suggested that he get him out there or on the phone and get it authorized. I told the young man that it wasn't that I didn't trust him, but to me, at this moment, this store had a very weak track of truth and honesty. So, after he made a 15 minute phone call, the dug up enough cash to refund my never received purchase.

Now, I will order it online somewhere.
 

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I can feel your pain.

I had problems with the Saint Louis Missouri Woodcraft store. Ten years or more ago they were a Great store full of woodworkers who would spend any amount of time working with a customer so that the customer understood the tool and how to use it. I recall once when Mike the manager spent an afternoon teaching me how to use a Delta joiner, after which I took that unit home with me. This was great customer service.

A couple of years ago (and after a couple of changes in management if not ownership) I would go in and ask for something and the salesman would simply point at the isle that had the tool. There was no offer to help, no suggestions, nothing. I went over to the Rockler store and got the great customer service I expected.

I can't say about more recent visits to Woodcraft as I avoid the store if possible.

Although, my last trip to Rockler resulted in a salesman that seemed to do everything to discourage me from buying a product. I hope that Rockler has not been contaminated by the same disease that hit Woodcraft.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
It's a shame. You would think that in this day of "online sales" brick & mortar retailers would be bending over backwards to make customers happy. I'm disappointed that I no longer want to give the Woburn store any of my money. They were the closest place for some things like General Finishes Salad Bowl finish. Because I always seem to run out in the middle of a projects.

I'll give the Rockler store in Cambridge a try sometime, but their problem is there is no place to park.
 
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