Local is Lekker

pwatts

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This thread will probably will get removed faster than toilet paper in March, but anyway. Sorry mods, need to vent. Sadly it will lack the effusiveness of [member=2475]Agaton Sax[/member]'s posts or the sheer jaw-dropping incidents of BulletGP or JNouw's actions, but here's my experience with Local is Lekker.  :popcorn: at your own expense. FWIW, this is not a sour forumite-forumite event, but forumite to Commercial Member.

For a valve project I need large inductors. The grown-up in me said, just order some brand-new Hammonds from Digikey, or have them made by Souris in Jhb. But then in the spirit of the "Support South African Hi-Fi" kumbaya thread, I thought why not support a known local planetary manufacturer in these challenging times. Sent off an email, yes it can be done, R3000 for three inductors. Took my breath away, geez for this price I can get aforementioned Hammonds, landed in my hands within a week and with datasheets and looks to back up a professional vs. DIY product. Not sure of Souris but can only be less or they won't be in business. But, let's support local and the deal was sweetened by throwing in a free valve rectifier and base. Payment was duly made on 19 September and I was told that dispatch should be before end of September.

Tick tock, October comes. Thought shame, he must be busy so waited until the 15th before inquiring. No response.

On the 18th I messaged requesting that if nothing arrives by month-end I would like the transaction cancelled and my funds returned. Immediately afterwards a response came that the materials needed have just arrived (no mention of shortages beforehand) and that winding will immediately commence, with completion aimed for the same week and that I shall "receive before month-end". OK, fine.

On the 11th hour on the 29th I'm told I can instead opt for some Parmeko inductors, used, that apparently are very good and otherwise I can have the custom-wound ones. The provided pictures look like they date from WW2 and been through it as well. Rusted, dented, flaking paint etc. Suffice to say these will not be suitable for proudly mounting on top of the chassis. No pictures of the custom ones but I will bet that they were not yet made, otherwise there would be no reason for the bait & switch.

Sent a response noting my dismay and that I want my money returned or I'll get my company lawyer involved and tell the story on the forum. Got a flowery response praising how awesome these things will be for my application. By this time I realized this is entering a JNouw situation and I can either fight for how long trying to get funds returned, wait another couple of weeks for the custom version, or take the war dogs and just get on with it so my stalled project can resume. So on 9 November I said fine, just send the bloody things and I'll try applying lipstick to this pig. This was confirmed and I was told besides the rectifier and socket I will also get a few caps. Butter me up with electrolyte.

So, how long should it take to send a small package 50km? 16 DAYS. Why? Well, because presumably to eke out even more profit it was opted to use this obscure PUDO contactless delivery method where sender drops a package in a locker and receiver having to the same to unlock with a PIN. Yeah, awesome. Then I got pulled into an email between sender and freight co because he doesn't know where the closest dropoff locker is. Then I got a call from the shipping co asking for the PIN, which I know nothing of. Sent a less-than-cheerful question asking WTF is going on by using a clearly untested method of shipping and why, despite knowing my gatvolness, it took so long to finally ship it. Got no answer, but today the package was finally delivered.

Opened it up, sure enough there are the three war dogs. One is still covered in dust from lying on a shelf; clearly just taking a brush or rag to them is a foreign level of service. And the rectifier, socket & caps? Gone like a cellphone left in a public bathroom.

So there we have it. Local is indeed very lekker. I've all but stopped using local for my business, and this is also now where I stop supporting in my private capacity. Sure there are some upstanding local manufacturers and hats off to them for trying to make a living in this domestic & international climate, but patriotism only goes so far. I paid R3000 to be deceived and essentially defrauded over a period of 9 weeks and 35 forum & email messages, and with three rusted & dented Koo cans to show for it. For less money, and far less anguish, I could have had brand-new pedigreed products in less than a week. At least JNouw's stuff were fully assembled products that take lots of materials and time. Here we talk about a bloody core and some transformer wire.

In a gesture of goodwill, I shall opt not to take the items that were omitted from the package. Clearly the sender needs the money more than me.
 

Jozua_2019

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Any small business that requires upfront payment usually suggests a cash flow problem... 

Consider it a "cheap" learning experience... and move on.
 

Katji

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I got the t-shirt, long ago.  That's why the collapse of SAPO was a sort of life-changing event for me.
 

johan.pretorius

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Jozua_2019 said:
Any small business that requires upfront payment usually suggests a cash flow problem... 

Consider it a "cheap" learning experience... and move on.

A deposit can be understood (especially for custom built items where material has to be purchased). 


 

Tzs503gp

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I feel for you Mr Watts. It?s everywhere though. One can speculate about what it reflects in the grand scale of our economy, personal ethics and so on, but what would that help. Grin and move on.
 

BiZKiT

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dont judge us all by this experience. i always say do your home work first on a supplier. Personally i find much better service from small companies.
 

Kletsou

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I keep on trying with the "support" approach. Experience is probably more negative than positive but the times it is positive, it makes up for the negatives. I must say one area where local craftsmen have really upped their game is with our knifemakers
 

Tzs503gp

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BiZKiT said:
dont judge us all by this experience. i always say do your home work first on a supplier. Personally i find much better service from small companies.

Your dedication and passion are not going unnoticed. Keep it up!
 

santoshlv426

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Echoes my expereince where I was "defrauded" of R1500 by someone I worked with previously and trusted. It sucks for sure !!
 
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