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NEPINE - Anyone in UK bought from this USA company?

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Pete L

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I visited the following website : -

http://www.nepine.co.uk/xcart/customer/home.php

which looks very impressive, .... almost too good to be true.

They claim to be a USA supplier selling American power tools at GB Pounds Sterling prices direct to the UK (and elsewhere). The information on the site about the company is negligable so I checked out their "Chat with us Live" option and got the following (sorry for lengthy detail):-

Chat Transcript
info: Please wait for a site operator to respond.
info: You are now chatting with 'Christine'
Christine: Thank you for contacting nepine.co.uk, how can I help you today?
Pete: Dear Nepine Customer Service, your website is very well constructed, but I am having difficulty finding out anything about you contained on it. It would seem you are an American company, but the ".co.uk" in your URL and all prices shown in British Pounds Sterling suggests you are able and willing to supply goods to customers in the UK. Please can you advise: - 1. Your company details (name, contact address, basis of trading etc). 2. Do you sell to UK customers? 3. Do you have a UK base of operations, or will any goods for British customers be sent directly from the USA plus the usual UK Customs Import Tax, transatlantic shipping costs etc.? 4. Your telephone Help Line rings for a while and then a recorded voice advises "Garden Readies (or something like that) ? all our operatives are busy, please leave a message ...." etc. Is this in fact a Customer Call Centre fielding calls for a number of mail-order companies?. 5. Are all goods sold to British customers modified to appropriate UK standards e.g. 230/240v, 13amp supply? many thanks, Pete.
Christine: Hi Pete, thanks for your requests. We are a US based company.
Christine: and sell items to customers in the UK
Christine: Our office is based within the US. The postal address is:
Christine: 681 Main Street, STE 2-17
Christine: Waltham, MA, 02451
Christine: US
Christine: 2. Yes, we do sell to UK customers
Christine: 3. Your item will be posted from our warehouse in the USA. It will be shipped promptly, with full insurance. Usually, no import duties or other taxes apply, but we cannot guarantee that. However, should you get charged for that, simply send us a copy of the customs receipt, and we will cover those charges.
Christine: 4. I apologize for that, we are very busy
Christine: Our phone number is 0207 9932973
Christine: 5. We are selling the american spec items. They are 110V. With most of our cordless tools, we also add a step-down transformer that you can use the item on 240V. You can find that information in the item description or you can also ask us if you are interested in a specific item.
Christine: Is there anything else I can do for you?
Pete: No thanks, I'll call the number you have provided if I need to chat about specific items. Many thanks for all of your help. Pete
Pete: Bye
Christine: Thanks.
Christine: bye

I have been looking for ages for a fixed-base router for my router table in the UK without success I'm wondering if importing from USA, and using a transformer (230/240 to 110/115) is a possibility.

Anyone know is this company is for real ????
Pete. :?
 

Waka

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Pete

Looks to good to br true although you never know, we already know we pay an arm and a leg for tools over here. Myself I run a lot of tools that are 110v so that wouldn't be a problem except for the frequency which is different between us and the US.

I wonder if one of our merican members would do some digging?
 

tibbs

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They may well be on the up & up but the website looks as though its designed to to deceive rather than inform - looking at the Routers section for example the 110v-only part is buried within the list of features (although the fixed-base models make the US origin a bit of a giveaway) - As you say, I couldnt find any indication of an address (UK or US) on the website (the domain is registered to NEPCO at the address you were quoted but Google reveals nothing about who or what NEPCO is).

Theres no mention of delivery times or that the products are US models & will be delivered from the US.

Personally, i dont think theres a barge pole long enough to make me want to touch them, but YMMV.

Richard
 

Noel

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Hi Pete, it stinks. Ok, presume for a minute that it's kosher. Look at their prices. Check out the US market only DW 735 thicknesser (although they seem to have 2 prices for the same model £419 & £570 even although I'm pretty sure there's only the one model on the US market). You can buy this most places for less than US$500, at current exchange = £277. Say £100 for shipping, 10% EU tax and 17.5% Vat (there's no way this will escape duty). That all adds up to about £500, with 110V, wrong Hz and sweet FA warranty. With their lower price of £419 + shipping + taxes = about £670 with no warranty and the lekkie problem. That's assuming you get the goods in the first place. Oh, I forgot, they'll refund the taxes........
Smells too much like the Unisaw offers from Spain that popped up last year (New Delta Unisaw for $700 or something).

Noel
 

engineer one

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come what may you cannot avoid paying the uk govt, anything shipped out of the states will attract some kinds of charges, and youwill be billed by the customs agent in the uk.
seems to follow the old maxim "if it talks like a duck it is a duck".

check the prices against rockler, and then check the same in the uk.
make sure the spec is ok, and any way remember america is the homeof spam, and credit card rip offs. unless they offer paypal or similar be very careful.
paul :-k
 
A

Anonymous

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Pete L":131yff19 said:
I have been looking for ages for a fixed-base router for my router table in the UK without success Pete. :?
look in B&Q, they sell them and have done for 3 years
 

Pete L

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Tony":1sp05en2 said:
Pete L":1sp05en2 said:
I have been looking for ages for a fixed-base router for my router table in the UK without success Pete. :?
look in B&Q, they sell them and have done for 3 years
Tony,
B&Q certainly did sell a fixed-base router, the CLM1250RD, but I have not seen it stocked in any B&Q Warehouse or Depot in my neck of the woods (Salisbury & Southampton). When I queried this with the B&Q HelpLine in December 2004 they replied: -

In answer to your query I have been in contact with B&Qs head office and have found that the fixed base router CLM1250RD has been discontinued and the last stocks have been sold over Christmas with no plans to restock in the foreseable future. but for what its worth I have attached the manual to this e-mail at the bottom.

Just to answer your final question the reason you will not find many types of fixed base routers in this country is that when routering was in its infancy and the router was no more than just a basic motor, the Americans developed it over time into fixed base and we developed it into plunging, and as a people we tend to stick to what we know.

If you require additional information please e-mail or ring the helpline on:0845 3002577

Your sincerely

Peter Beaumont
Performance Power
I found the answer a bit condescending as the Performance Power Pro plunge router I have (1250W - 13MM) doesn't perform that well in my router table, and whilst I have adjusted it (with B&Q Depot's advice) it is a modest performer at best, and as with all plunge routers, not well suited to table usage.

Ive also checked the B&Q website which doesn't seem to feature a fixed-base unit. B&Q at Southhampton suggested I buy a Triton Router which apparently has a feature to extract the spring(s), and use one of the handles to adjust the depth incrementally.

Anyway, many thanks to you (and all who replied) to my query.

cheers, Pete
 

Pete L

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Jake":1w442l0d said:
as with all plunge routers, not well suited to table usage
I don't know why you say that.
Jake,
it may be that I lack experience with my plunge router and table (?), and am simply going about it all in the wrong way ... but I'll explain.
I have both a B&Q Power Professional Pro Router (CLM 1250) and router table (CLM1000RT) which is OK for the price I paid. However, as the mounting plate and guide fence are awkward to remove I tend to mount the router with both plate and fence 'in-situ' (for which ideally I could do with three hands).
Anyway I find adjusting the plunge router in-situ extremely difficult as effectively everything is done with the tool upside down and obscured from view. Whilst I guess I should be removing the mounting plate each time that I want to make an adjustment, I can't help feeling a fixed-base router would be a better unit to fine-adjust whilst the router stays mounted.

By the way, my first moderately 'demanding' use of this set-up was putting a quarter round on some 3ft, 4ft and 6ft lengths of 6" x 1/2" thick mahagany . All seemed well except the router bit seemed to be gradually slipping despite having been tightened fully. This was confirmed when it finally slipped its way back to the un-plunged position, routing its way through the router's plexiglass dust shroud. Feeling like a right Wally I checked this out with the B&Q Depot at Southampton who replaced the soft plastic tightening lever with a metal alternative, and advised that the new lever should be mounted with the locking mechnism in a partially tightened position. This indeed allows me to lock the router in the plunge position with more force, but I can't help feeling I'm fighting gravity and the router plunge springs and that a fixed-unit would be a better option.

Pete L :)
 

Steve Maskery

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Pete
You have my sympathies, but, IMHO, the main problem is that you are trrying to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

When I was looking for a cheap 3rd router last year I considered the B&Q offerings. Suffice it to say that I ended up buying a Dewalt, although I have to say that even that was disappointing compared to my ancient 177E on which it is based.

You really need to spend quite a bit of money to get a machine which lives up to expectations. My router table has my ancient 177E in it, fitted with a Router Raizer (10/10). I also have a DW625, as I mentioned (OK) and a nice new Trend T11 (probably 8.5/10, but 10/10 to Trend Customer Services), as well as a couple of MOF96 which are comatose, unfortunately.

I have yet to find the perfect router. I thought the Triton came close, until I tried to put a Clico mortising bit in it. The T11 is very good in many respects, but cutter changing is no better than its predecessors, you still have to balance it on the edge of the bench and use both hands.

Perhaps I'll start a thread on The Perfect Router, see if we can agree on what it shoud be like? Any support for the idea?

Cheers
Steve
 

Jake

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In the meantime, can you remove the plunge springs? This sounds like a junky router problem, really, but removing one of the pressures on the locking mech would help, and if it is staying in the table you don't need the springs much - at least a lot less than you need a slipping plunge lock. Try prising off any covers on the top of the legs, if the springs are removable there will be a nut and washer retaining the plunge spring which you can remove and then take the spring out.

I'm taking no responsibility for it all going wrong or you not being able to get it back together again afterwards, mind.

Cheers,

Jake
 

Noel

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Steve wrote "Perhaps I'll start a thread on The Perfect Router, see if we can agree on what it should be like? Any support for the idea?"
We're talking 4 leaf clover here, aren't we? But, worth a try. Suspect that a router that the user is happy with is an adequate router, not a perfect router. Should be interesting.

Rgds

Noel
 

Philly

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Stev
Good idea!
Personally, I think the Trend T11 is a pretty good tool-most of the things I could ask for in a router.
Something to remember Pete-routers really aren't good at removing lrge amounts of timber! If you use your existing set-up but take small bites you'll find that you have no problems.DAMHIK :wink:
Cheers
Philly :D
 

RogerS

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PeteL

Thishttp://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_id=206814&name=bench roller&sfile=1&jump=0 will cure your problems. I had similar issues with a cheapie Ryobi combi router/table...slipping down, difficult to adjust etc.

Mount this underneath the router and remove your router springs and voila...easy to adjust and it holds the router in position. OK...it doesn't get rid of the slop in the plunge bearings or the huge amount of vibration :cry:
 

Les Mahon

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Nice tip roger, I have been toying with the idea of getting a scissor jack from a car scap yadr for some time to do this, must find a source of tuit's
:roll:

Les
 
A

Anonymous

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Pete,

I am a new member and this is my first post but I can help on NEPINE. This company is fine and absolutely kosher. I bought a Husquvarna 50cc chainsaw from them for £260 as opposed to typically £350-400 here a couple of months ago. They delivered in 10 days with complete Husky paperwork, warranty etc. It came beautifully packaged with every item neatly wrapped (inside a strong box) in back copies of the "Rocky Mountain Times!". I will definitely use them again.
 

Noel

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So shipping was free as per the website I presume? What about EU duty and vat and any clearance fees? I'm willing to be convinced that they are ok.

Rgds

Noel
 
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