Really disappointed in TOW customer service...

Help Support Muzzle Loading Forum:

sooter76

40 Cal.
Joined
Aug 28, 2014
Messages
215
Reaction score
2
Not in their overall service, just their reply to a question I had asked... I recently inquired about the difference in their 20ga barrels for their TULLE kit, specifically who made their non-Colerain barrel and what the practical differences were between it and the Colerain barrel. The response I received...

"Both are made in the USA, by famous gun makers that you will recognize. Made to fit Track's stock, these are made under contract, to our specifications. They are essentially identical."

Are you kidding me!? What the hell kind of answer is that? If they're both made by famous gun makers I'd recognize, why not tell me who makes the non-Colerain barrel? And they're not identical. By TOW's own information on their site there's a .005 difference between the barrel's bores and about half a pound difference in weight.

I like TOW as a company and have had nothing but good luck with them but seriously!? If you're going to include a link to ask questions about the products you sell maybe actually answer the questions that are asked... Maybe!?
 

coloradoclyde

Cannon
MLF Supporter
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
18,077
Reaction score
612
Are you kidding me!? What the hell kind of answer is that?
It is likely proprietary, trademarked or conforming to the terms of a purchase agreement.

It could be that both are made by Colerain or it is made by a competitor and cannot be named due to contract specifications with Colerain.
 

Spikebuck

69 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Nov 23, 2010
Messages
4,179
Reaction score
1,309
Location
On the Mississippi in SE Minnesota
Colorado Clyde said:
Are you kidding me!? What the hell kind of answer is that?
It is likely proprietary, trademarked or conforming to the terms of a purchase agreement.

It could be that both are made by Colerain or it is made by a competitor and cannot be named due to contract specifications with Colerain.
That was my first thought as well...they can't say who makes the other barrel. But, they could have done a bit of a better job explaining.

I really like ToTW, but I have found their responses somewhat lacking in substance from time to time as well. As an example, I just recently purchased a Mike Brook's rifle off the site. It's a gorgeous rifle and was everything they said it was except that the pan cover is about .015 above the pan! It's not a "file job" fix. I sent them a picture and asked if their gunsmith could fix it and would they or the owner cover the cost. Their response was it couldn't be fixed and I was in the 10 day inspection period, so if I didn't want it, just return it.

I then sent the pictures to Jim Chambers (it is a Chambers lock) and another person whose opinion I would highly trust. Both came back that it appeared the frizzen had been replaced but whomever fit it didn't know what they were doing as the screw hole in the frizzen was too low which was making it sit too high. A new frizzen, properly drilled, would do the trick. Less than $35 with shipping to fix.

In this case, I think Track just didn't want to deal with it, so they said it couldn't be fixed...either that or the person that looked at it is incompetent. :idunno:
 

coloradoclyde

Cannon
MLF Supporter
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
18,077
Reaction score
612
All I can say is that if you have a problem with their customer service, you need to tell them.

Mistakes don't fix themselves.

Some day "Track" will go the way of Gander Mountain, Cabelas, Remington, CCI, and so many others....They will get bought up by a big company and things will get even worse.

Enjoy while you can...
 

Wes/Tex

Cannon
Joined
Jul 23, 2004
Messages
7,787
Reaction score
13
That is puzzling, never encountered anything but top rate customer service. They do have a fairly strict 'privacy' policy to prevent problems...for reasons we can all understand. I'd recommend you call David Ripplinger at 763-633-2500. He's not always available in the shop but one of the guys should be able to answer any questions.
 

44-henry

45 Cal.
Joined
Jan 15, 2005
Messages
1,032
Reaction score
67
I have visited TOW several times when I lived in the Midwest and they havd always, in my opinion, been good to work with.
 

coloradoclyde

Cannon
MLF Supporter
Joined
Jan 3, 2013
Messages
18,077
Reaction score
612
I haven't had any problems with them either....But, as the old saying goes...

“You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time”.”
 

phoenix511

40 Cal.
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
380
Reaction score
0
to Spikebuck: TotW 'return it" is a reasonable answer. Your suggestion to fix/price adjust is renegotiating the sale price. Did the flaw show in any of the pics when purchased?

Sometimes you strike a deal, then on close inspection you find something you don't like and, at least to you, was not part of the description.

Sometimes the deal was so good you don't want to send it back for a small, fixable matter. Sometimes you send it back, sometimes you keep it.
 

Spikebuck

69 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Nov 23, 2010
Messages
4,179
Reaction score
1,309
Location
On the Mississippi in SE Minnesota
Wet Willie said:
to Spikebuck: TotW 'return it" is a reasonable answer. Your suggestion to fix/price adjust is renegotiating the sale price.
Agree 100%. The "Return it" part of the response is certainly one of the legitimate options. And yes, the fix/price adjustment would be a renegotiation based on flaws found that were not disclosed. So I made a legitimate request for consideration and they can respond as they wish to that part of the request.


Wet Willie said:
Did the flaw show in any of the pics when purchased?
No. Close ups of the area had the frizzen open. No mention in the write-up of this flaw and being able to keep powder in the pan for a period of time is kind of important, especially for a hunter. :grin: Here's a pic I took to show how big the gap is. It varies from .019 to .015 in gap. The cover just "floats" above the pan.



Many times ToTW does a good job of pointing out flaws, even if just cosmetic. This flaw is functional on a hunting gun. So I feel I was justified in at least questioning it. The rest of the gun is fantastic..."as new" just like they described it. I have posted pictures in the Photos forum.

Wet Willie said:
Sometimes the deal was so good you don't want to send it back for a small, fixable matter. Sometimes you send it back, sometimes you keep it.
Exactly. Step 1...give them a chance to review and respond. I didn't jump on here and start complaining...I went to them first. Step 2...look for alternatives to see what you can find, which is what I did and found out, from Chambers himself and another highly respected builder/restorer, that the fix was not bad at all...well worth it to me considering the agreed-to price I was paying for a "like new" Brooks gun. My fear, at first, was if it was fixable at all except for an entirely new lock installation...which is what Track's response was implying.

So...none of the above was the issue I had with their response. My issue was that they gave a quick and erroneous response as to the fixability OR (and I think this is the case) said that just to get it off their desk and move on. If they didn't want to respond to that part, they should have just said that they would not entertain paying for the fix and I could send it back.

I don't want anyone to get me wrong about ToTW. I order the vast majority of my shooting supplies from them, have done a couple of their kits, and have bought several consignment firearms from them. They are quick to ship, have reasonable prices, and great selection. Their website is second to none in useability, in my opinion. They are a top-notch supplier.

That said, "sometimes" I think they could do better on customer responses. I have had instances of great response, and a couple that I thought were pretty lacking. I think the response to the O.P. on the barrels was lacking. Even if they could not disclose the maker of the other barrel because of a contract, they could have given more information, such as what makes one barrel a half-pound lighter. I think the OP asked a very legitimate question of them, but got a shoddy response.

Mike
 

Rifleman1776

Cannon
MLF Supporter
Joined
May 26, 2011
Messages
16,729
Reaction score
1,276
Location
Arkansas Ozarks
That's bad. :shocked2:
I would print out this entire thread and mail to them. The last thing any business needs is an unhappy customer spreading the word.
 

necchi

Cannon
MLF Supporter
Joined
Feb 23, 2009
Messages
13,077
Reaction score
210
Location
Central Minn
Spikebuck said:
That said, "sometimes" I think they could do better on customer responses. I have had instances of great response, and a couple that I thought were pretty lacking.
Being from Minn I'm sure you've been to their minimal hours shop/showroom floor.
So you know what's going on there,
For others;
They have 5 people working there,, there is no "bank of customer service operators" and as far as I know they don't have just one person that answers the phone,, if someone is busy with a walk in customer or on the phone,, someone else just picks up the next caller.
Do you know who you talked to? Dave, John, Glen, Mark?
 

Zonie

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
MLF Supporter
Joined
Oct 4, 2003
Messages
32,990
Reaction score
7,112
Location
Phoenix, AZ
I agree with you. Track of the Wolf's response to your questions and problem should have been better.

That said, the fix for your lock is pretty simple and it doesn't require replacing the lock.

If you can find a small piece of #25 (.022"), #26 (.0188"), #27 (.0172"), or #28 (.0156") steel sheet metal or a piece of 1/64" (.016")brass sheet metal you can soft solder it to the underside of the pan cover area of the frizzen.

File the edges to match the frizzen and your about done.

Some minor filing of the added sheet metal face might be required if a 100% seal is desired but even if it is left unfiled it should seal the gap well enough to keep any priming powder from escaping.

If you use steel, you can cold blue the edges or entire surface of the sheet metal.
If you use brass, it will rapidly darken because of the sulfur in the smoke from the prime flash.
 

nhmoose

58 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Sep 30, 2010
Messages
3,261
Reaction score
624
Location
north of Golden Pond, NH
I do not agree that, the buyer was given a viable option return it for a refund.

As a formers online seller return it or it is on you. Negotiating after is called blackmail and would get you banned from my stuff. That is real life.

The grief you are giving the seller her is part of the blackmail.
 

54ball

62 Cal.
Joined
Aug 23, 2004
Messages
2,745
Reaction score
125
Both topics have nothing, nothing to do with customer service.
Business...maybe. Customer service, No.
As far as who makes the barrel, what does that have to do with customer service?
Since the answer was not what was wanted, does that mean it's bad customer service? In my opinion no. It's a business matter.

If you had specifically ordered say a Colerain and received said mystery barrel and in the time allotted ...Track refused to replace, refund or what ever....or did replace and or refund...Thats a customer service issue not......Hey can you tell me who makes this barrel and why it is heavier....lighter....slightly different hue...browns browner.....files easier....smells different etc etc etc?
Being in the Midwest.....Midwesterners tend to be "matter of fact". Nice, but matter of fact.

The Consignment gun......

Track does not own that gun....they are a broker for the seller. It does not matter if the problem cost 15 cents and five minutes to fix.....they are not going to touch that. Mainly because they do not own it. Think about it. Imagine the can of worms here.
Again....strictly a business matter.
As far as being a fatal flaw for a hunting gun, Well....That's a matter of opinion. That's why they have an inspection period. It does not matter how "easy " or how easy some third party says the fix is.....It's not their responsibility to fix it. It's the potential customers decision.....whether to keep the gun and live with it or have it fixed or.....send it back.
Very very simple....Again a business issue.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

nhmoose

58 Cal.
MLF Supporter
Joined
Sep 30, 2010
Messages
3,261
Reaction score
624
Location
north of Golden Pond, NH
nhmoose said:
I do not agree that, the buyer was given a viable option return it for a refund.

As a formers online seller return it or it is on you. Negotiating after is called blackmail and would get you banned from my stuff. That is real life.

The grief you are giving the seller her is part of the blackmail.

Sorry missed the FACT spikebuck is not the OP Sorry I entered it that way. He was his own problem. My apologies for not paying attention obviously.
 

sooter76

40 Cal.
Joined
Aug 28, 2014
Messages
215
Reaction score
2
Answering and being able to answer questions about products you sell is customer service... Beyond that it isn't that they didn't give me the answer I wanted, it's that they didn't give me an answer at all.
 

Vaino

Cannon
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
8,064
Reaction score
184
Since 1978 I've dealt w/ TOW for most of the parts for my builds and have always been satisfied w/ their service and the parts they sold me.

Also have sold 4 LRs through their consignment sales w/o any problems whatsoever.

Not telling the OP as to who made the bbl in question....I think it's for a proprietary reason and they don't want it known.

As to the MLer w/ the bad pan fit......you have {had} the option of returning it. The MLers TOW sells in their consignment sales are still owned by the owners, not TOW.

Seeing you like your purchase, send the lock to Chambers and have it fixed.....and enjoy the many years of using the gun.

Have visited TOW 4 times and was at first surprised at how small the store is....it's in a row of other small businesses. The limited hours that the store is open to the public is because they're primarily a mail order business.

Dave Riplinger {owner} is an astute businessman who has grown TOW into one of the premier MLing supply sources......this doesn't happem w/ poor customer relations.......Fred
 

sooter76

40 Cal.
Joined
Aug 28, 2014
Messages
215
Reaction score
2
flehto said:
Not telling the OP as to who made the bbl in question....I think it's for a proprietary reason and they don't want it known
Then why not just say so!? That at least is an answer, and a very acceptable and understandable one at that. The response I got reads more like 'I don't know what I'm talking about so I'm gonna blow smoke up your butt and hope you're too stupid to know any better'.

Like I said, I've always had good and quick service from TOW so it's not like they're suddenly going to lose my business over this. It's just frustrating that their response was essentially a non-answer.
 

44-henry

45 Cal.
Joined
Jan 15, 2005
Messages
1,032
Reaction score
67
If they choose not to disclose the manufacturer that is their business, if you do not like it purchase your barrels elsewhere. There are many reasons a company may choose not to disclose that info.
 

AZbpBurner

54 Cal.
Joined
Mar 31, 2013
Messages
1,950
Reaction score
190
Location
Arizona Territories
If it were mine, there are only 2 choices one already mentioned: send it to Jim Chambers for proper fitting.

OR:

Fill & redrill the current frizzen.

All the other tweaking, twiddling, complaining, flapping of jaws and gnashing of teeth are all superfluous complications to a simple remedy.
 
Top