What is your experience with your local Woodcraft store?

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Forum topic by b2rtch posted 12-28-2013 01:31 PM 2097 views 0 times favorited 69 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4822 posts in 2472 days

12-28-2013 01:31 PM

My local Woodcraft is in Sandy Utah.
I go there as little as possible and only when I cannot find something anywhere else and that I believe that I can find it there.
My last experience was a few weeks ago looking for a new blade for a #3 Craftsman plane that I rebuilt to give to a friend.
As usual my experience was unpleasant, aggravating and unsuccessful.
A waste of time
I go to this store only may be once or twice a year and that is still too much.
I ended up buying a blade for a very good price on E-bay .

I know that other LJs have issues with this store and specially the owner of this store.
My hope is that someone from Woodcraft headquarter will read this post and act upon it, as this store could be great a store with a different owner/manager.

-- Bert

69 replies so far

View casual1carpenter's profile


354 posts in 1899 days

#1 posted 12-28-2013 02:06 PM

Bert, I shop at my local woodcraft store often and i must say that i am happy that they are there. Yes, you can find better prices on the internet. Yes, the store does not offer every item that an internet search will produce. However, I am one of those people who are into immediate gratification in the sense that when I pay my money i like to have the product in hand. On the rare occasion that an item is out of stock that is usually corrected by special order and i receive a call to pick it up in three or four days.

I do have a simple personality clash with one guy, I think he is the manager LOL, but seeing as how there is usually three guys working i simply avoid him when I can. I will say that all of the staff is knowledgeable and helpful and will often bring another staff member into a discussion if the topic better fits their expertise. My only issue with going there is that after picking up the item i originally went to purchase and confirmed it’s availability over the phone other things seem to magnetically attach themselves to my hands and wind up in the truck going home with me.

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1076 posts in 1127 days

#2 posted 12-28-2013 02:22 PM

I like to visit one of their stores when I go see my daughter. I just like to look around, very seldom buy anything. The one I visit most is in Beaverton, Ore. It always amazes me, seems like there is one “associate” that is always busy helping customers and being friendly. There are usually about three others that are standing around in the area of the registers that do nothing. They don’t even seem happy to take peoples money. Like I said, I’m not there often but it has been that way every time I have been there. I think most the employees are retired guys working part time.

-- “We all die. The goal isn't to live forever; the goal is to create something that will.” - Chuck Palahniuk

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381 posts in 2003 days

#3 posted 12-28-2013 02:25 PM

Mine is great!

Internet prices MAY be cheaper, and they have a very limited selection of wood, but otherwise – its a fun place for me.

If I absolutely have to have something, last minute, I go to the Woodcraft website and check local inventory. Then, I call the store and have them set it aside for me (just in case). When I get to the store, I always walk the aisles and usually find something else I like at a price I can manage.

I always talk to the guys, and that’s prevented me from wasting money (they often have better ideas). And I’ve attended several demos and classes and taken each visit as an opportunity to talk with other hobbyists.

It may not be as big as a Canadian Lee Valley, but its better than any big box store I’ve ever been in. And its local.

I recommend Woodcrafters.

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

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33 posts in 1772 days

#4 posted 12-28-2013 02:51 PM

My local WoodCraft is in Columbus OH. I have mixed experiences with them. There have been times when they were extremely helpful, and other times that I couldn’t get help because they were busy talking to each other. I went in to buy a table saw about 6 months ago and I couldn’t get anyone to assist me. I got irritated, went home, check Craigslist again (I had been checking it regularly), and found a used saw exactly like the one I was going to buy. I saved $400, and only had to clean off the surface. On the other hand, one guy once took the time to teach me about wood dye. Almost too much information. He even pulled some off the shelf and we did some tests. All in all, I will always go back, but I never know what to expect.

-- Think Twice, Decide Once - Still cut three times

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16864 posts in 2612 days

#5 posted 12-28-2013 03:00 PM

Mine is alot better then Rockler but frustrating at times….. However, We are very lucky to have Austins Hardwoods here in Southern California… It is Amazing, All kinds of wood, and tools and supplies… They have hundreds of different stains and finishes and its the size of a Home Depot. The staff is amazing as well. I took my Dad there while he was visiting and he was amazed and so jealous… He still talks about that place. Good Luck.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

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1517 posts in 1435 days

#6 posted 12-28-2013 03:25 PM

I have found that their inventory is lacking. They have been shifting everything around in the store to make room for a lot more machines. I am going to wait a bit to let them get better organized before I go back. I have never been disappointed with their customer service. I do think their hand tool inventory and layout could be better. There was only one replacement iron for a #6 in the store. They seem to be overstocked on turning and carving supplies. Franchise markup is hard to see sometimes.

-- "My god has more wood than your god" ... G. Carlin.

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2106 posts in 1596 days

#7 posted 12-28-2013 03:29 PM

I use my local Woodcraft quite a bit. They are friendly and knowledgeable. The store is easy to find things in and has same inventory as the catalog. This store used to be a company store but is now a locally owned and managed franchise.

-- Bruce, Boise, ID

View whitebeast88's profile


4086 posts in 1614 days

#8 posted 12-28-2013 04:04 PM

i’ve only been to a wc store once when i was on vacation(cause i don’t have one close).the people where very unfriendly and would walk right by.i don’t think they even spoke when i went to check out.

-- Marty.Athens,AL

View JJohnston's profile


1614 posts in 2714 days

#9 posted 12-28-2013 04:16 PM

I don’t bother going to the one in Albuquerque any more. It always looks like they’re about to go out of business – and for all I know, they might have, I haven’t been there in so long. Lots of empty space on the shelves, what inventory there is, is spread thin to disguise the empty space, etc.

I ordered a table saw from them a few years back. The guy who wrote up the order wrote it up for the wrong saw – totally different model. This wasn’t discovered until the saw arrived at the store. The guy was decked out in Sandia National Labs gear – watch, ring, shirt logo. Apparently, I was wrong in assuming you had to be smart, or at least literate, to work there.

I once called them looking for some quarter sawn white oak. The guy on the phone said yep, they had some; he was looking right at it. When I got there, I saw right away that it was all flat sawn.

We do have one of the three Woodworker’s Supply stores in Albuquerque, and I do go there occasionally, but I mostly do business online.

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View ShaneA's profile


6429 posts in 2022 days

#10 posted 12-28-2013 04:26 PM

The store closest to me (Overland Park, Kansas) is a typical retail store. A nice employee or two, and then a few guys hiding out or at register doing nothing. Typical stuff, they have a nice selection, and allow one to leave with the items in hand and see stuff in person. Thankful to have one close. Certainly haven’t done anything that would cause me not to shop there.

View Biff's profile


126 posts in 1437 days

#11 posted 12-28-2013 04:28 PM

My local store is a crap shoot as far as the staff. There are a couple really nice, knowledgeable guys and four or five worthless ones.

The biggest problem is the absolutely outrageous prices on everything from wood to hardware. I have stopped going in there unless it’s an absolute dire necessity. I mean stuff in this store is easily 20-30% higher than Amazon. Just can’t justify it!

-- Interested in Oregon property? Visit me at

View DKV's profile


3940 posts in 1927 days

#12 posted 12-28-2013 04:36 PM

Mine is great. I have found the customer service tone is set by the manager and franchise owner.

-- This is a Troll Free zone.

View lumberjoe's profile


2893 posts in 1672 days

#13 posted 12-28-2013 05:11 PM

Mine is also great. As a preface, my wife and I are in several times a week. If any of you remember the TV show “Cheers”, we get a similar reception to when Norm walks in the bar. We are on a first name basis with everyone. They also special order a lot of stuff with us in mind, and tend to take care of us well a check out time.

We often have our 2 year old daughter with us and they treat her really well – giving her little vendor giveaways like promotional stress balls and the like.

She loves going to “the wood store”


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1420 posts in 2186 days

#14 posted 12-28-2013 05:13 PM

JJjohnston: The Woodcraft store in Albuquerque is out of business – poor management. I ordered a Rikon lathe from them, waited 6 weeks, gave up and ordered it online – got it in 4 days.

-- BOVILEXIA: The urge to moo at cows from a moving vehicle.

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4939 posts in 3086 days

#15 posted 12-28-2013 05:35 PM

I wish my local WoodCraft store was closer. The closest one is in Appleton, Wisconsin … 43 miles from my house.

The franchise owner is a terrific guy (he is very generous in his support of our local woodworker’s guild), and the people that work there are all very knowledgeable and helpful.

They do sometimes have a limited stock (e.g. General Finishes products), but I have found if I call ahead a day or two and tell them what I want my order is ready when I walk into the store.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

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