Which vendor has the best customer service?

bsexton

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I was thinking that I've done business with many rocketry vendors over the past year and I have to say for the most part I have been very pleased with the products and service I have received. Some of the vendors I have purchased from include (no particular order):

Aerospace Specialty Products
PerfectFlite
Semroc
Aero Pack
Public Missiles
Performance Hobbies
Giant Leap Rocketry
Apogee
Roachwerks/Sandman
Balsa Machining Service
Railbuttons
Magnum
Pratt Hobbies
U.S. Rockets
LOC
Missile Works
Tango Papa
Dave's Roketwerks
Aerocon

This is certainly only a small fraction of the vendors that support our hobby, but I would and will buy from every one of these fine people/companies again.

Now, I'm not trying to start a riot here but out of the vendors you have done business with which one has the best customer service in your opinion?

My vote has to go to Semroc -- overall I think Carl and Sheryl McLawhorn provide one of the best experiences...period. The on-line purchasing system, the email notifications, the packaging, the product, the documentation/instructions and the customer support are all top notch.

I know there are many other vendors out there that have good reputations that I haven't had the pleasure of dealing with -- hey, I only have some much time and money you know. :D

But what say the rest of you? Who has the best customer service in support of our hobby?
 

Dr.Zooch

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BMS followed by ASP- I've sent BMS so many funky parts drawings and ordered scads of parts and his work just keeps getting better. This last batch of parts included 100 Apollo CMs and they were cut so well that they feel like silk- and that CM is a tough cut for his lathe. Bill is the man!

Next I gotta pick ASP. He's saved my skin several times while I 'm doing this protracted wait on "another" vendor to send a bulk order of tubes. ASP ships right away and actually responds to my e-mails! (Geee I hope someone Totally hears that). What a concept!
 

lalligood

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U.S. Rockets all the way.

If you order off the Instaship page, you're all but guaranteed to have a box waiting for you at home within 3 business days stateside (YMMV across the pond). What STILL blows me away (even after several orders for quite a few kits) is that you don't have to pay before ordering. No catch, no fine print, no scam. Pay USR whenever...just pay ;) Order 3+ kits at a time & get a 15% discount off your order (even on shipping) too.

USR kits are old skool. Old skool rules. They are light. They are strong. They are built for speed. There are small kits, medium sized kits, large kits, and FREAKIN' HUGE KITS to choose from.

If anything is wrong or incorrect with a kit, email Jerry. He will get you the correct parts just as fast as the original order got to your door. (Although I've only had this happen with one kit in one order--and it was for an EXTREMELY complex kit!)

Have questions or comments about building your USR kit? Send Jerry an email. I don't think I've ever waited more than 60 minutes for an answer. Ever. I really don't think the man sleeps... I even emailed him one time at 9:00am EST on a Saturday. He *still* responded back in a matter of minutes! That doesn't sound too strange until you realize that he's in California, which is a 3 hour time difference!--it was only 6:00am there :eek:

I am in no way associated with U.S. Rockets other than being an extremely satisfied USR customer :D
 

KermieD

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I'd also cast for Binder Design. Mike Fisher there has been more than helpful not only with notification, but with build and modification design help as well. During the evenings, I could email him for advice on a modification or clarification on something and literally receive a reply within the hour.

Tim Van Milligan at Apogee has been equally excellent with his service.
 

OKTurbo

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My favorites are FlisKits, JonRocket, and Thrustline Aerospace. You can always count on these guys for great service and prices.

A suggestion for the forum: On another on-line forum I frequent, they have an "evergreen" list called the Good-Guy / Bad Guy list. This would be a good idea here. Based on member feedback, a list of the "good guys" along with the "bad guys"/ones to avoid, would be kept as a sticky post for forum members to check and see what other's opinions are of the rocketry vendors.

Just a suggestion, but I think it would be a good idea. It keeps people away from the obvious bad vendors, and also lets them make an informed decision when they want to buy from a questionable vendor.

John
 

illini

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FlisKits, Pratt Hobbies, and ASP have all been the top tier of service for me. Several others have been very, very good. Only a few stand out as being troubling. Several people have had good service with A2Z, but I had a shipment one time that was mutilated in part due to poor packing (box was shorter than the body tube...you figure out the rest) and it took a week of badgering them before they finally made good.
 

wwattles

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Originally posted by OKTurbo
A suggestion for the forum: On another on-line forum I frequent, they have an "evergreen" list called the Good-Guy / Bad Guy list. This would be a good idea here. Based on member feedback, a list of the "good guys" along with the "bad guys"/ones to avoid, would be kept as a sticky post for forum members to check and see what other's opinions are of the rocketry vendors.

Just a suggestion, but I think it would be a good idea. It keeps people away from the obvious bad vendors, and also lets them make an informed decision when they want to buy from a questionable vendor.

Sorta like the feedback system on eBay?

Personally, I've been nothing less than astounded by Fliskits, impressed by Pratt and Squirrel Works, and well-supported by Mile-High.

WW
 

flying_silverad

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Having a rating system for vendors would be an awesome tool as long as it was a little more pliable than Ebay. I've seen some A LOT of pretty scary negative feedback on folks that didn't deserve it. I've been fortunate (knock wood) so far but know that it's only a matter of time when someone appears who is that 1 percent.

As long as there were tight controls, I'm all for it.

BTW...BMS, Fliskits (Yes, I do build other vendors kits;) ) The Rocket Garden, Excelsoir and several others are all awesome.
 

r1dermon

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i'd have to say that there are several vendors that go above and beyond the customer service and support aspect of being a vendor. those vendors in my experience are, Fliskits(jim is on the forum....what more could you ask?) i've had VERY good support with fliskits, especially when he refunded an accidental second order. that was cool of him, BSD extremely friendly and awesome support, and LOC, they've been great too. always get a high quality kit on time and neatly packaged from them. those are my three A+ vendors. but, there are a lot of other vendors who i've not yet dealt with who i do intend to, like USR.
 

DynaSoar

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So many are so good that it'd come down to who handled problems that happened to occur with them, and those problems are rare. Too rare for me to judge them all by that, so I couldn't say anything about "best".

Of all the vendors I've dealt with, only one wasn't satisfactory. Who that was would be no surpise to most here.
 

cydermaster

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Pete's Rockets - not exactly the easiest to buy off mail-order-wise, due to lack of web store (although thats being 'sorted', apparently); but a superb shop. If Pete was any more laid back, he'd be upside-down (he's laid back enough to be horizontal already).

Hobby Linc - I know its dis-loyal to the three UK vendors to shop from accross the pond, but with the current exchange rate, US price's can't be competed with when it comes to QuEstes stuff. I've had great service from this shop, and the prices are well keen.
 
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