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11-18-2012, 09:20 AM   #76
jac
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I've bought a lot and traded a few times on the forum and only once got stung with a relatively cheap Vivitar with fungus. The seller offered to take it back but all trust was lost. I ate the $70 loss - why pay $28 shipping and risk him not refunding at the end. On one trade, I did send out a lens that apparently had fungus. I had shot with it and examined it but it slipped by. The buyer was in Scandinavia so rather than do the exchange thing, I sent him sufficient money to get it cleaned (I hope) and he felt good about that to the best of my knowledge. My reputation and the reputation of the great majority of forum members is at stake here.
Although I've occassionally asked for a better price for a specific reason, my standard offer is "Your price, my fees & shipping, immediate payment." And as noted above, what is really the point in hassling for a few bucks other than some mis-guided sense of hubris.

11-18-2012, 10:16 AM   #77
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QuoteOriginally posted by jtkratzer Quote
That right there makes me hesitant to buy anything from them. Who cares if there warranty is great if they don't get it right on the first try with regularity?

Having to rely on a warranty should be the exception, not the excuse.
It is pretty clear that they grade on cosmetics but spend little to no time examining function. Possibly they turn the rings and so on, but anything that you wouldn't catch immediately without actually mounting the thing (in the case of a lens anyway, which is all I've ever bought from KEH) is going to be up to you to find out. With a camera body, obviously you have to do a little bit of checking, but they certainly aren't going to so out shooting with the thing, so it if looks good they will generally assume it is good, even if it ain't. So you do have to be prepared to test and possibly return stuff...
11-18-2012, 10:24 AM   #78
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
It is pretty clear that they grade on cosmetics but spend little to no time examining function. Possibly they turn the rings and so on, but anything that you wouldn't catch immediately without actually mounting the thing (in the case of a lens anyway, which is all I've ever bought from KEH) is going to be up to you to find out. With a camera body, obviously you have to do a little bit of checking, but they certainly aren't going to so out shooting with the thing, so it if looks good they will generally assume it is good, even if it ain't. So you do have to be prepared to test and possibly return stuff...
While I haven't looked at their policies, I'm not a fan of paying for shipping to buy and item, find out it's not up to snuff, and then have to pay to send it back, even if it's being replaced. I understand they're not going to shoot rolls of film and develop them, but perhaps confirm the meter is in the ball park with something known to be properly functioning, etc.

Considering most people (I like to think) care about their reputation on the forum when buying and selling, you'd think a company that makes a living selling used gear would care enough to accurately grade their merchandise.

I've heard great things about KEH, but descriptions like these certainly make me reconsidering my "trust until that trust is broken" attitude with people and businesses that don't give any reason up front to not trust them.
11-18-2012, 10:35 AM   #79
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QuoteOriginally posted by jtkratzer Quote
While I haven't looked at their policies, I'm not a fan of paying for shipping to buy and item, find out it's not up to snuff, and then have to pay to send it back, even if it's being replaced. I understand they're not going to shoot rolls of film and develop them, but perhaps confirm the meter is in the ball park with something known to be properly functioning, etc.

Considering most people (I like to think) care about their reputation on the forum when buying and selling, you'd think a company that makes a living selling used gear would care enough to accurately grade their merchandise.

I've heard great things about KEH, but descriptions like these certainly make me reconsidering my "trust until that trust is broken" attitude with people and businesses that don't give any reason up front to not trust them.
I had one item I bought about a year ago from them that was just plain broken, although it was in a very subtle way so I give them a pass on discovering that. I paid my own shipping for return but was promised that they'd reimburse me for it. They did NOT, and I even included a receipt for the postage (I bought the label before closing the box). I think they did give me a full refund for the original cost including original shipping though.

And then later on I bought something also broken, and something I really really wanted (it was rare) and I returned it for repair -- twice actually. (First repair was quick but wasn't complete, and the second repair they kept it for two months and then gave up and said they couldn't fix it, and then gave me a full refund at that point.) Anyway, for that item, they gave me prepaid Fedex return labels, so maybe they've changed their policy on shipping returns anyway.

So, they have sold me some broken stuff, and also some great stuff. They did screw me on the return shipping for one item last year after promising to pay for it (which I did not follow up on -- I just ate it), but on this more recent item they gave me those Fedex labels without prompting. Under their return policy you can return anything for any reason within 14 days or something like that -- I'm assuming you'd have to pay return shipping if you returned something "just because".

Anyway, when buying stuff sight unseen that's about the best you are going to do -- no one else has their selection or prices. It is what it is. Have they "broken trust"? Not really, but they are a bit sloppy at times evaluating equipment, and if they weren't they'd probably charge more...

11-18-2012, 12:05 PM   #80
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
I had one item I bought about a year ago from them that was just plain broken, although it was in a very subtle way so I give them a pass on discovering that. I paid my own shipping for return but was promised that they'd reimburse me for it. They did NOT, and I even included a receipt for the postage (I bought the label before closing the box). I think they did give me a full refund for the original cost including original shipping though.

And then later on I bought something also broken, and something I really really wanted (it was rare) and I returned it for repair -- twice actually. (First repair was quick but wasn't complete, and the second repair they kept it for two months and then gave up and said they couldn't fix it, and then gave me a full refund at that point.) Anyway, for that item, they gave me prepaid Fedex return labels, so maybe they've changed their policy on shipping returns anyway.

So, they have sold me some broken stuff, and also some great stuff. They did screw me on the return shipping for one item last year after promising to pay for it (which I did not follow up on -- I just ate it), but on this more recent item they gave me those Fedex labels without prompting. Under their return policy you can return anything for any reason within 14 days or something like that -- I'm assuming you'd have to pay return shipping if you returned something "just because".

Anyway, when buying stuff sight unseen that's about the best you are going to do -- no one else has their selection or prices. It is what it is. Have they "broken trust"? Not really, but they are a bit sloppy at times evaluating equipment, and if they weren't they'd probably charge more...
These are all reasons to pay with credit card to maintain the ability to dispute charges and not have the money come directly out of your account. It sounds like even calling on the phone to discuss the specific item doesn't always guarantee you're getting what you're expecting.

I've had a few transactions not go according to plan as a buyer on eBay, but never on a forum. I feel like most people on forums are willing to swap emails/phone numbers to discuss specifics, which I've done as the buyer and seller and all has worked out.
11-18-2012, 12:16 PM   #81
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QuoteOriginally posted by jtkratzer Quote
These are all reasons to pay with credit card...
CC and Paypal, is there any other way to pay with an online merchant? I don't think you'll ever have to dispute any charges with KEH as they will happily accept returns. The risk is not financial, just wasted time. But on the other hand, we have to remember what a miracle age we are living in that we can browse a gazillion pieces of gear from around the globe and have it sent to us within a few days. I'll certainly take the present situation rather than having to scrounge around from local only sources...
11-18-2012, 12:37 PM   #82
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
CC and Paypal, is there any other way to pay with an online merchant?...
In Canada we can pay though a sytem called Interact E-mail Money Transfer (EMT). All it needs is an email address. I can then send money to Interact who hold it for the other party who signs in to their online banking via an email message. Their online banking recognizes they are processsing an EMT and are prompted for a password that I would create. Successfully answer the password and the money is deposited. There are limits on how much you can sent, and they can be cancelled as long as the other party hasn't deposited it. The password and question can be redone or reset if needed. Once they are completed they CANNOT be cancelled nor can they be reversed. So I don't mind using to send money to my parents, but I wouldn't use it to buy a used lens.

We can also use Interact online to buy from online stores (it debits directly from bank accounts). I still prefer to use a credit card, since I get points on my CC and I don't from my bank account.

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11-18-2012, 01:29 PM   #83
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QuoteOriginally posted by vonBaloney Quote
Anyway, for that item, they gave me prepaid Fedex return labels, so maybe they've changed their policy on shipping returns anyway.
That has been my experience with warranty returns from KEH. I have never had a defective item from them, but have done a couple of returns where condition was not as described. I got full reimbursement + shipping both ways.


Steve

(...is wondering how this thread ended up being about KEH...oh, yeah...I mentioned them as a viable option to the PF Marketplace...)

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