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Me and McMaster Carr - rantalicious.

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Forum topic by chrisstef posted 436 days ago 2071 views 0 times favorited 48 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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chrisstef

10653 posts in 1633 days


436 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: saw files mcmaster carr poor customer service nicholson

Im not much of a ranting person but I want to share my little story here with the group.

Ive been attempting to purchase files for sharpening hand saws and with the global supply of saw files at a minimum I turned to McMaster Carr after everyone else was out of stock. Now, ive never purchased from them before but ive heard nothing but good things from everyone who has purchased from them.

I went on the website and corralled all the files I needed and dumped them into my shopping cart. While reading the descriptions I couldn’t find a brand name that they were selling. I figured no problem ill just email customer service and get the skinny. I had 2 parameters for this purchase. 1) They cannot be files that are made by Grobet in India. 2) They cannot be files by Nicholson made in Mexico. Ive heard bad things about each from first hand users.

Long story short: Customer service would not tell me which brand of files they carry. They don’t want price shopping, company policy, blah blah blah. Ok cool, I get it. I tell them that all I want is to be assured that I wouldn’t get either of the 2 brands I had mentioned. They assured me of that.

Verbatim: “Our saw files are not Nicholson’s or India made”

I opened up the box before I go to work this morning, all giddy, Stef’s got his files, Stef’s got his files …. Take a look at the makers marks on them base “Made in Mexcio, Nicholson”. You’re kidding me, really?

I email customer service and end up with the same fella that assured me I wouldn’t get a hunk of crap file and his response was “Im sorry Chris, you can return the files you don’t want for credit to (shipping address).” Im currently biting my tongue as to not go completely bs on this gentleman.

Now you can make your own decision on how you feel but, personally, im all set with McMaster Carr. Wont catch me making a purchase there ever again. I was blatently lied to and when I call them out no one cares. I know that my measly $50 purchase is not going to ever effect their bottom line but the whole thing wasted my time and my money. Not cool MMC, very not cool.

Rant over.

EDIT: after another round of emails MMC made right and fully credited my credit card and left the files with me, no return required. Good on them. I wouldnt allow them to credit me for the purchase of the 2 file handles. There was no misappropriation in those items.

2ND EDIT: they retracted all of the charges including both file handles i had ordered. I emailed the cs rep and thanked him for being a stand up guy. Any beed between myself and MMC has been rectified. Its all about how you recover. They have recovered well.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty


48 replies so far

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2002 posts in 1459 days


#1 posted 436 days ago

Not cool at all. I’ve had mixed feelings about a UK based factory, not on customer service but on very variable tool quality. They make awesome little jewelry saws and totally crap and paint-chipping chisel honing guides and tiny vices. Random sh!t happens too.

So, looks like I’ll go saw file shopping and see if I find something good enough to send you an address! Do you have any specifics on the files you’re after?

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View AnthonyReed's profile

AnthonyReed

4548 posts in 1067 days


#2 posted 436 days ago

Sorry to hear of your troubles Stef. Thank you from making us privy to your experience, it may help some avoid it themselves.

-- ~Tony

View OnlyJustME's profile

OnlyJustME

1562 posts in 1003 days


#3 posted 436 days ago

That wasn’t very nice. It’s not just a $50 sale they lost. How many more times would you have turned to them for a purchase if it was a good experience? How many people will you tell this to or read this posting that won’t buy from them now? It’s all over the internet now that McMaster Carr sells cheap crap for top dollar and lies to their customers about it. It can turn into an online derecho and they could lose thousands of dollars in sales.
Customer service just ain’t what it used to be.

-- In the end, when your life flashes before your eyes, will you like what you see?

View theoldfart's profile

theoldfart

4013 posts in 1078 days


#4 posted 436 days ago

Stef, how did you makeout with finding Simonds files?

-- "Aged flatus, I heard that some one has already blown out your mortise." THE Surgeon ……………………………………. Kevin

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

10653 posts in 1633 days


#5 posted 436 days ago

Still no return email on the Simonds Kevin. I’ve got hope though. My last resort will be turning to my father in law who works for UTC here in CT. Ive got to imagine with all the machining they do he could get his hands on some.

OJM – I agree 100%. They stock some great items and the shipping was beyond speedy. I could probably use a ton of different items from them for business as well but ill stick with Colony, Grainger, and the other guys after this experience. Like ya said I just paid top dollar for some junkers I could have bought around the corner at Home Depot.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6923 posts in 1540 days


#6 posted 436 days ago

”...Long story short: Customer service would not tell me which brand of files they carry. They don’t want price shopping, company policy, blah blah blah. ...”

So, knowing the above you continued with your order. IMO, your mistake here, not theirs. You were rather clearly shown their deceptive manners from the get go. At least you NOW know that that was a red flag when they would not divulge the branding on their product. Lesson learned. Thanks for sharing.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Mosquito's profile

Mosquito

4595 posts in 919 days


#7 posted 436 days ago

HMike given the full context of what you highlighted – Ok cool, I get it. I tell them that all I want is to be assured that I wouldn’t get either of the 2 brands I had mentioned. They assured me of that.

They still should have said “I can’t share that either” instead of lying, or giving out false information.

-

Regardless, it sucks. You going to try one out just to see anyway?

-- Mos - Twin Cities, MN -- Stanley #45 Evangelist - www.youtube.com/MosquitoMods

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2002 posts in 1459 days


#8 posted 436 days ago

Bottomline: MMC is now blacklisted among at least 7 guys on LJs ;)

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View PineChopper's profile

PineChopper

175 posts in 823 days


#9 posted 436 days ago

Hello Chris,

Your story is just one more reason that I don’t buy tools over the internet. Actually, I can’t think of much that I have bought over the internet since I got my first computer in 1990.

I also won’t buy anything that is made in China.

View HorizontalMike's profile

HorizontalMike

6923 posts in 1540 days


#10 posted 436 days ago

Mosquito,
My point is that the conversation should have ended when the company started spouting their deceptive policies, etc. NOT after trying to convince them otherwise.

FWIW, I have one of the “China” Nicholson files that I picked up in HD before folks started rating them. It is a minimal file and I replaced it with a new pair of Iwasaki files I hand picked personally at my local WC. Iwasaki files are a hands down winner by comparison IMO.

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2002 posts in 1459 days


#11 posted 436 days ago

@ PineChopper: Depends on what you’re looking for and what price you’re willing to pay… I’ve bought a bunch of stuff on the web (almost everything, save what I can get locally) from sellers worldwide. It appeared to me that some Chinese manufacturers outperformed US manufacturers sometimes. Remember they have the factories where many “Western” stuff is made, so they get to know the products they build and can make better copies…

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View ShaneA's profile

ShaneA

5285 posts in 1225 days


#12 posted 436 days ago

Well that sucks. Sorry to hear it. Made my 1st purchase from them recently, seemed a bit odd they didn’t calculate shipping at time of order.

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

10653 posts in 1633 days


#13 posted 436 days ago

Mike – youre right, i should have pulled the plug on the deal but im desperate lol. The thing is that ive done my homework and know that there are very few manufacturers of saw files. Specifically there are 4. Grobet ( swiss and india made), vallorbe, nicholson, and simonds. Through my emails i had narrowed it down to them being Simonds. The assured me no india grobet and no nicholson, then i specifically asked for vallorbe and swiss grobet. He told me they did not carry those. So i was taking a very calculated risk provided i was being told the truth. In the end it was either misinformation or laziness that did me in.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

15582 posts in 1493 days


#14 posted 436 days ago

I ground the knives for our molding company for at least 9 years and during that time we made all of our templates with Weinig steel template stock which is a pretty tough steel. Actually it makes good knife stock (for carving and whittling type knives after it is heat treated in the final stage before tempering). The tools we made our templates from were hacksaws, files, and grinding wheels. It was a tough steel and was hard on hacksaws and files. I made two or three templates every day. We had five Weinig molders and ended up with over 5000 different sets of molding knives and each molding knife had a template. My main supplier was MSC and Mcmaster Carr. I had a work table with a machinist vise and a file rack hanging on the wall behind the work table. In those racks we had about 150 files of every kind of size shape that you can think of. We went through a lot of files and hacksaw blades. Not only that but I also had a pretty good machine shop in the same part of the plant and so I used the same files in there as well. I was also over the engineering and maintenance of the plant. Don’t get me wrong. Even though I went to engineering school and partly through machinist school I consider myself to be self taught when it comes to how I made my living in the molding plant. This means I don’t claim to be a know it all. At best, I’m a jack of all trades – at worst maybe a shade tree mechanic. I personally don’t have a clue as to what I would have done without MSC and Mcmaster Carr for all sorts of reasons.

So far as files made in Mexico – well welcome to globalism. However, I can imagine that a file plant for a large file company is a very high tech plant. If the plant is set up properly with good quality control procedures and other controls they should be able to make good files most anywhere in the world. That’s my 2 cents.

BY the way, after a while of doing it everyday I found that for what we did with them Sandvik hacksaw blades were the best.

helluvawreck aka Charles
http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Jorge G.'s profile

Jorge G.

1526 posts in 1102 days


#15 posted 436 days ago

I kind of agree with Mike, I was just getting ready to purchase some shellac from “shellac.net” until I saw the review they had about the “French Polish” book by Derek Jones. Not a single word of what they stated about the book is true, so I decided I was not going to buy from them if this is the way they deceive their customers.

-- To surrender a dream leaves life as it is — and not as it could be.

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