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Old 11-01-2012, 11:05 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Why can't paintball manufacturers use a similar system to automakers, where they have factory trained techs working at various retail locations (dealerships) and the repair is billed back to the parent company if it is covered by warranty? This would alleviate problems for markers bought from a brick and mortar location (provided they have trained personnel to conduct the repair), and continue with mail in service for internet orders? Something like this might help drive traffic back to local B&M stores and keep the sport going.

This doesn't excuse ANS from their shipping mistakes. I myself have dealt with a couple of them over the years, and have ceased giving them my business as a result. The most recent one was pretty silly - they sent me a shocktech halo drive cone when I ordered the entire upgrade kit. Instead of sending just the missing parts, they wanted me to RMA the drive cone, pay the restocking fee... oh, and they had run out of the item I wanted, and would only give me a store credit. Nice way to do business.
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Old 11-01-2012, 11:29 PM   #32 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=Chooie;2522189]Why can't paintball manufacturers use a similar system to automakers, where they have factory trained techs working at various retail locations (dealerships) and the repair is billed back to the parent company if it is covered by warranty? This would alleviate problems for markers bought from a brick and mortar location (provided they have trained personnel to conduct the repair), and continue with mail in service for internet orders? Something like this might help drive traffic back to local B&M stores and keep the sport going.


They do! Techs can get Cert's at trade shows/big games and at some point online..Most of the big marker companys offer the training although in most cases it cost to get to the location. I mean , who wants to fly to Ft wayne to take a course from Tippmann. Its all about money....
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Old 11-01-2012, 11:40 PM   #33 (permalink)
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I know techs can get certified, but they're still just working for the store that employs them. If they could bill their hours (standardized per the repair in question) back to the manufacturer, then we might have something. The customer gets their warranty issue remedied locally, they are happy that they bought from a local store, even if it cost a little more, they get the value added from knowing that they are taken care of without having to pay to ship their stuff and wait a week or more for the turnaround and repair.
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Old 11-01-2012, 11:41 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by TechPB-Mike View Post
the example with Walmart doesn't apply to paintball

In paintball, if you buy a broken product, you're stuck with it, and you have to incur all the costs of sending it to the manufacturer.

This isn't "retailer" driven, this is MANUFACTURER driven. I know all the paintball companies inside of this industry, I can tell practically every employee, that works at every company inside of this industry. I know their policies from returns, to MAP pricing, distribution, everything.

The paintball manufacturers, do NOT give retailers the ability to "swap" or "exchange" broken products. If you own a store, and you sell a Proto (for example). If that Proto is broken, Dye does not allow you to take a gun that was attempted to be used, exchange it for a brand new one, and send the broken one back for credit.

You can't do this with AGD, you can't do this with Planet, you can't do this with Empire, you can't do this with Dye.

If you buy a broken product, you are stuck with it and the retailer can't help you, because the manufacturers don't allow the retailers to "warranty swap" defective products in house. The "tradition" is that the consumer must send the product back to the manufacturer, for warranty repairs.

This does not matter what store or online retailer you purchase from. I've dealt with this 100 times, and it's why I generally hold off on brand new company's products when they first hit the market (Zodiac ZR1, Machine Vapor, Alien, etc). Because if my gun is out of spec, doesn't shoot properly, doesn't work, it's on ME to send it in to get repaired.

Now, is there room for change? Sure, but at this point no company is going to step forward, and tell all 1,200 of it's retailers "Go ahead, let your customer service staff make the decision to warranty swap guns. Then send us the ones you think are broken and we'll issue a credit to your account. Or just send you a brand new one in it's place.."

That's not ANSGear's fault, nor is the fault of any other retailer. That's a policy in place, set from the manufacturer, not the retailer. So to blame a retailer for "selling me a broken gun" is nonsense. They didn't test it, nor do they have the authority to swap it for you, even if it was broken.

In paintball, if the product you purchased happens to arrive DOA, it's on the consumer's shoulders to get it repaired, not the retailer. Sure, it's your right to bitch, whine and moan about the policy that's been in place for 2+ decades, but it won't change anything. Nor will it fix your situation any faster.
Sorry Mike, this is turning into a pick on Mike/ANS part. You have explained it, and it is cool that you did. But I have dealt with another online retailer make a mistake on an order, and instead of handling it like ANS did, they allowed me to send the item back to them, in that they would fix it or replace it as they determined. ANS is a giant, and they buy lots of stuff, so can sell it for cheaper, which gives them some cred. My old store that I worked for when it was in it's hey day was similar in that we bought so much paint, we had other stores and fields buy their paint from us, because we could get it so much lower in price that we could actually beat the distributor's price for how much he was selling at their quantity request.

Personally, for whatever it is worth, I think that you may want to stop "defending" them at this point, as they are a major advertiser for your site. Not to say that you can't be totally unbiased, but it is still there.
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Old 11-02-2012, 10:59 AM   #35 (permalink)
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^^^ well I've been a customer of theirs, longer than they've been an advertiser on my site.

I've been buying thousands upon thousands of dollars each year using online retailers, everyone from saksworldpaintball, paintballkingdom, I've pretty much ordered from nearly every single online retailer in paintball, at least two dozen times, LONG before I ever had a paintball website of my own.

With companies, you aren't dealing with the "brick and morter" building, you're dealing with people. People who may be new, people who are afraid of stepping over the line of their authority and getting in trouble with the owner, people who are afraid of losing their job.

All I'm trying to do here, is give people tools, based on my personal experiences to help them solve their problems. If ANSGear screws up, they screw up. I get my advertising check on TechPB, regardless of whether I can "sell you" on going back there or not. They don't pay me to defend their website. They don't need to, being the largest online retailer in paintball, they are obviously doing something right.

I've been buying paintball products online since 1997, when I got my first credit card in college. All I'm trying to do here, is give people a road map of how to quickly resolve issues when dealing with ANY online retailer in paintball.

If you document everything, and clearly explain what happened to the person on the phone, 99.99% of the time the issue gets resolved quickly and easily. But like many of the emails I've seen, where the person says-

"I got the wrong **** and I'm not paying **** to send it back. You bitches better send me the right **** or I'm suing!!!"

No order number in the email, no name, no address, no information other than that... then of course the person goes and complains in a public forum that the "customer service sucks" LOL and the best part is that these emails happen alot more than you think!

If you are calm and courteous, you can resolve practically any issue.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:00 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Okay guys you are all talking about very different ANS's

They are all the same company, but ANS has changed in major ways throughout the years.
This. Back in the late 90's early 00's ANS was certainly a great producer of Autococker upgrade parts and whole guns. Certainly a step up from stock WGP parts of the time in many respects (the big selling point of the Jackhammer was that it was externally adjustable, and priced under the PPS Rock). I've never had any of their markers newer than the GX-3 version of their mech cockers, but what I've had were nice guns. So getting back to the OP's question, they made a good product and Gen-X cockers are well worth the price they sell for on the used market these days. Their Quickfire autococker triggers are excellent.

As for more recent history, I've ordered from ANSgear several times and never had a problem. A couple years back, I ordered several of their autococker valves, one arrived missing the cupseal. I called them and the shipped me a decent supply of the missing part free of charge.

I've had a good opinion of them since waaaay back in the day when I broke the barb on my very first jackhammer (which was my very first modification to my pre-98 Autococker). They sent me replacement parts free of charge then too and it was completely my fault it broke.
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Old 11-02-2012, 03:05 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by TechPB-Mike View Post
If you are calm and courteous, you can resolve practically any issue.
Oh, very true. And I am sure that plenty of kids call them up, or email them, expecting that ANS customer service will automatically know who they are.

I love what they are doing with pretty much every item, making a video of the item, out of the box, showing it off. Adds an additional dimension to the advertising over pretty much everyone else.

I also don't think that this a small operation where someone working up front in the store is filling all of the orders. I am pretty sure that they have a dedicated online order picker staff.
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Old 11-02-2012, 03:44 PM   #38 (permalink)
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I've been to their warehouse before...it's absolutely humongous!
They do have staff dedicated to online ordering (met a guy who worked in this department, said they had their own floor upstairs), stockroom and order fulfilling staff in the warehouse and a few up front.

I think a lot of the problems people are experiencing are due to lack of communication between ordering staff and stockroom, which is understandable because it's a huge place and there's a lot of stuff from a lot of brands everywhere. And keep in mind that because ANS is so big, they prioritize retail background over paintball background when hiring.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:33 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Didn't know I was gonna fire up so much debate. Here is my point Mike, you explained the inner workings of the paintball industry because you have first hand knowledge of the industry. You work with these companies to run your site and do your reviews and you do good work. I do not have a working knowledge of the policies and practices of paintball retailers, manufacturers and so on. How am I supposed to know to send my gun to the manufacturer not the retail store. Upon contacting ANS they never explained this to me, just told me to send it in for repairs and then charged me,another thing that was not explained to me. ANS has shipped many packages well. However when you have a problem that is when you get to see what kind of company you are dealing with. This is where ANS fails.
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Old 11-16-2012, 01:41 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Figure I'll throw my two cents in - last time I dealt with ANSgear was when I was buying parts for my autococker build (4-5 years ago), which is built with some ANS parts. I can't speak for everyone, but I had a good experience buying and using the products from them. The price was right and the pieces worked well.

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