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Axminster. Speaking Too Soon.

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Mike.C

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Hi All,

How many times have you heard the phrase "I hope that i am not speaking too soon"

It was only on this forum last Tuesday that i was singing the praises of Axminster. Yet 3 days later after spending another few hundred pounds they have sh-t on me from a great height.

Last year i purchased several Japanese saws and among these was a Hassunme crosscut saw. Since then i have used this particular one about 3 or 4 times at the very most.
Yesterday was one of these occasions. I was cutting a small housing joint in a piece of pine when all of a sudden the blade bent slightly and a half inch spilt appeared on the top, right where the handle meets the blade.
Those of you that are familiar with this saw will know that it has a long handle and when using it for this sort of joint i would be holding the saw horizontally and so there would be no way that any sort of excess pressure would be placed on the blade.

I contacted Axminster today and after placing an order i told them about the saw. After looking at my passed purchases i was surprised to hear that it was 13 months ago since i bought the saw. I said that this may be the case but i would expect it to last a lot longer. To this she replied well those saws are a bit flimsy.
To cut a long story short i was told that there was nothing they could do about it.

Now i realise that it was out of warranty, but as it was only by a month i would except them to have been of some help. More to the point i would have thought that they would want to know why this blade spilt for no reason at all.

I will say what i said last Tuesday (up until now) i have never had a problem with Axminster. But it is this very point that has made things worse, because now rather then looking at them as a company who are first class, i am seeing them as a company that dump on me at the first sign of trouble.

This saw only cost £15.03 and a replacement blade is only £7.43, so most people who say what the heck. But i am thinking after spending a lot of money with them (over a £1,000 in the last month) if this is their reaction for a relatively cheap product, what will they do if one of my machines go wrong?

Regards

Mike.C
 

trevtheturner

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Mike,

Any goods sold by a retailer have to be of 'merchantable quality' and fit for their purpose, irrespective of any warranty period, as required by The Sale of Goods Act. As you had only used the saw 3 - 4 times before it developed a defect, it clearly was not of merchantable quality. You clearly were not in any way contributory to the defect, so it is not your fault. The value of the item, or the cost of a replacement blade, is irrelevant - you should not suffer a loss as a result of a defective item. Obviously, it would be a different matter if you had used the thing daily and worn it out! But as this is not so, this appears to be a perfect example of a case in respect of which the Act is designed to give the consumer protection. The fact that you were told by APTC that the saws are 'quite flimsy' pretty much in itself is an admission of guilt that the saw is not fit for the purpose for which it was sold to you, i.e. sawing wood!

I would contact APTC again, try to speak to someone with some authority there and point this out to them (making sure you mention 'merchantable quality' and 'Sale of Goods Act' as above). If they still refuse to rectify the matter - by supplying you with a replacement or refund, the choice being yours - advise them that you will pass the problem on to your local Trading Standards Department for action, and do just that.

I would certainly pursue this, despite the inconvenience to yourself. I can always accept a mistake being made and, perhaps, something turning out to be faulty but I don't think any of us should accept unreasonable treatment from retailers, whatever or how little the value involved.

If you try this approach (but keep your cool, mate - don't let your anger come to the surface just yet!) and can get the right person on the end of the 'phone I would be very surprised if they don't rectify the matter without further ado. Best of luck. :wink:

Cheers,

Trev.
 

johnelliott

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My reaction is slightly different. I would write a letter to the managing director, setting out the problem and what you want them to do about it. If that fails then I would forget about it and decide whether to purchase from them again purely on the merits of the items and prices etc. It seems to me quite reasonable for them to limit their liabilities to 12 months, they've got to draw the line somewhere
John
 
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I have a lot of dealings with warranty work as you say axminster (merchant) are liable for 12 months to sort out any problems that arise after that period they should pass on the detail of the manufacturer .After all they are the responsible party . Write a letter to the manufacturer and keep a copy for trading standards if it all goes pear shaped .
 

johnjin

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Hi Mike

Well what can I say.
First of all, if that is being shat on, I hate to thing of what may have been coming down on me over the years.
I don't think that this is, in any way, an unreasonable response from Axminster. Thirteen months is a whole month over the guarantee period and as John says they have to draw the line somewhere. For me, I wouldn't have even bothered to complain about an item that cost so little as long as it had worked for the first few days. As far as legal options are concerned, I would not think that you would stand any chance, as the burden of proof would be on you, to prove that you had only used it a few times. With the amount of items that Axminster sell, and the fact that we only hear very infrequently of gripes about the service, or quality of the products, is testament to the quality of Axminster customer services. In my opinion, for such a large company to remain, so well spoken about, is close to a miracle in itself.
Anyway these are just my ramblings on the matter, but I would like to read of anyone elses thoughts.

All The Best

John
 
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Having worked in retailing for many years it is amazing how "Unused" products become faulty.almost everybody who complains about out of warranty items has "only used it a couple of times". I'm not saying this is the case here, just trying to point out Axminsters view. The tricks and excuses used by the public do harden the softest retailer. I have found Axminster to be more than fair, I recently ordered a chuck which turned out not to fit my drill.I phoned them and they sent me a return post-paid sticker to return it.
 

johnjin

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Hi Ed
Welcome to the forum.
Yes it does make for some interesting.
I have read about it before and I do think it is something that that needs to be more widely available for people to read.
It definitely wouldn't have changed my response in the case of Mike's complaint about Axminister.

Anyway glad you have come in from the cold so to speak.

All the Best
 

johnelliott

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I used to deal with customer aggro for a large chain of electrical goods stores, and the type of info supplied by Which and ocassionally Citizens' Advice Bureaux was always incomplete. Note in the link above- customers' rights may last for up to six years. The problem that they usually fail to mention is that if a customer has not reported a problem with a purchase for some considerable time after they have purchased it, then the presumption is that they have been happy with it, and have been using it, for that length of time. If that is not the case then they will need to prove that that isn't the case, and just saying so isn't proof.
Which is a marketing organisation, it would be amusing to see a real consumers' group do a report on them
John
 
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Hi Mike

Considering the circumstances I understand how you feel.

I think that strictly on the warranty issue you may have an uphill battle.

However, it should not be beyond Axminster's discretion or wit to realise that

A) You are a Good customer, and...

B) That a replacement blade would be a very cheap way to keep you happy and still a customer.

One shot in the foot for axminster.
 
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Anonymous

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The problem that they usually fail to mention is that if a customer has not reported a problem with a purchase for some considerable time after they have purchased it, then the presumption is that they have been happy with it, and have been using it, for that length of time. If that is not the case then they will need to prove that that isn't the case, and just saying so isn't proof.


...and just saying so isn't proof.
Fair comment but though it may not be proof, if things deteriorate, a judge may well take your word for it.

just "saying so" can be just as powerful as proof. Your credence becomes the proof
 

trevtheturner

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......and 'just saying so' would,of course, be supported by the present condition of the item. It would be pretty clear from its state whether it has been heavily or regularly used or used just 3 or 4 times. It might wear out with use, but a steel saw shouldn't split when used for its designed purpose, even in regular use. Could be a dangerous defect, too.

'Customer aggro' is no reason for a company to absolve itself of responsibility in the case of a genuine complaint. The company with that kind of attitude is just the kind of company I would never deal with again. In my experience Axminster is not that kind of company - having used them many times, on the one occasion I had a problem they dealt with it speedily and beyond my expectations.

Mike,

Sale of Goods Act quite clearly and definitely takes precedence over manufacturer/retailer warranties, so talk 'suitable and merchantable quality' - don't let them cloud the issue with talk of their 'warranty'.
I'd be very surprised if you cannot resolve this issue with another 'phone call.

Cheers,

Trev.
 
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Trev, I couldn't agree more with your last post.

Its my general impression that axminster are a reasonable company even if sometimes its takes them a little while to get there.
 

Keith Smith

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This is one of those threads where I find myself agreeing with both sides of the argument.

The only thing that has occured to me is that I also buy a lot from Axminster. Would I complain about some thing which was less than £10, just incase something really expensive went faulty, and I had used up any goodwill on a relatively trifling item?


I have recently had a problem with some bandsaw blades from Axminster which I had had for six months. They sent me new ones without seeing the old first, arrived next day too.
 

Alf

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While I think Axminster are well within their rights to say it's too long since you bought it for it to be their problem, I agree with billzee that keeping you a happy customer wouldn't have cost them much, while not doing so has got them bad publicity and a less-satisfied customer. Back to the Kindergarten class at Rob Lee's School of Customer Satisfaction I think! Although I'm a little bit surprised. When I had a problem with the brass ferrule spliting on a Sorby corner chisel, well over a year after buying it from them, they were very helpful in getting me in contact with Sorby to have it replaced with a new chisel. Presumably doing the same all the way to Japan isn't so appealing. :?

Cheers, Alf

Edit: Just not with it today. :roll: Commiserations on the saw, Mike, regardless of anything else. :( Welcome to the forum, Ed. We like questions, ask away. :D
 

Drew

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Mike C

How about taking a photo and sticking it into an e-mail to Axminster. The old adage about pictures and 1000 words might swing the balance in your favour.

Drew
 

Midnight

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Mike....

difficult issue to justify a lot of effort... giving the expiration of warranty and the fact that it's designed to be a consumable item. Personally I'd be inclined to treat it as if it were a hacksaw blade... occasionally even new ones break... granted, they're not sposed to.....but it happens... I'd simply replace and get back on with the job...

As for this putting their support for machinery on shaky ground; I wouldn't sweat that for a sec. It's been my experience that they're one of the "good" companies, i.e. not simply a "box shifter". I reckon your machines will enjoy their support for years to come...
 

Mike.C

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Hi,

Trev, thank you for the info which i am going to act on.

JohnElliott i cannot see how you can say that 12 months is reasonable if as Trev states the law says otherwise.
But this is beside the point because if you read my post again you will see that i did not phone them to make a complaint. I said:

"I contacted Axminster today and after placing an order i told them about the saw"
I was telling them i was not complaining at that point. "Who is going to place a large order and then complain", you would do this first. I was simply informing them that their saw had failed for no reason and i thought that they would be interested. It was only when they were offhand about it and said that you have had the saw for 13 months and that they are a bit flimsy that i wanted to complain.

Johnjin, I feel that they treated me like <admin edit for language>. As i have just stated i told them that a product of theirs had failed for no reason what so ever. If another one fails it might break in half this time and cause an accident. But instead of wanting to see it they said there was nothing they could do about it. My opinion was it should last longer then 13 months.
At shows etc they claim that their jap saws are so good, yet when they fail all they can say is that they are flimsy.
I cannot see how you can say that this is reasonable.

How can you say that as long as a product lasts works for the first few days it is alright?

You also state that as far as legal options are concerned i would not stand a chance as i would have to prove i only used it a few times. Well you might like to know that this would be quite easy to prove as the saw has a large logo right across the blade and if the saw had been used more then a few times this would at the very least be marked if not scratched to hell.
this saw is in perfect condition and has no marks what so ever on the blade.
You are ranting about how good Axminster are, and how little this item costs, well you would have thought that a company that is so good would not have treated me how they have for so little a price.

jaymar, you claim to have worked in retailing for many years and that ALMOST EVERYBODY WHO COMPLAINS ABOUT OUT OF warranty ITEMS HAVE ONLY USED A COUPLE OF TIMES. Well i bloody take offence to this. Do not give me the <admin edit for language> that "You are not saying this is the case here" If you did not think it you would not have come up with it.

Ed welcome to the forum and thanks for the link.

johnjin, Why wouldn't that have changed your response in my case? Am i not endited to the protection in law.

johnelliott, how do you expect me to report it any earlier, it only happened the day before? As i said above i belive that i can prove that it has hardly been used, is that amusing?

billzee, if only they had seen it that way. I for one will never put a complaint on here again as i do not take kindly to being called a liar by some. No matter how they dress it up.

trev, if my pears do not believe me how can i hope for Axminster to. No matter what the law states, and my word, there are does on here that think i should have taken the <admin edit for language> from Axminster and kept my mouth shut just because they have had no problems with them.

Keith, as i have said i did not phone up to complain, i phoned them to place an order, and just told them about the saw. It was only when they were offhand with me claiming that i had bought it 13 months ago and they are flimsy away that i started to complain.
If they had said that it is out of warranty but it should not have split for no reason and asked to have a look at it, i would never have had a reason to complain and i certainly would never have put it on this forum.

Regards

Mike.C

Admin: Mike, sorry 'bout that; just removing words that may give offence. Hope you understand. Cheers, Alf
 

Mike.C

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Hi Drew,

Sorry but our posts must have crossed. Good idea/

Mike, again our posts must have crossed. As you will see from my other post it is not about the saw itself. 99% of my workshop comes from Axminster i have spent quite a few £1,000 with them. Yet when i try to pass on some info about this saw they treat me as if i am trying to rip them off.

Some see this as rubbish but i hope that one day they too are treated bad and then we will see how they feel.

Regards

Mike.C
 

Chronosoft

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Hi Mike,

I have had some pretty abismal service off them too. I bought a Clifton plane off them and the casting on the damn thing was appalling - it took me 3 phone calls for them to give me a returns number and when I did send it back they kept it for 2 months and sent the same one back as a replacement.

In the end I got my money back off them as when i sent it back to them, they signed for it and lost it.

However, the rule of thumb is that if you are a good customer and you have spent money with them, write to the MD and complain - I am sure you will get a favourable response as he is obviously a canny businessman who probably sees long term value in a customer greater than a 15 quid Saw.

Failing that in future - David Charlesworth recommends some nice Japanease saws and I don't think any of them come from Axminster ?

Cheers and all the best

David
 
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