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Santa Trading Japan (Gbi) On Amazon.com


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#1 Faisel

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 14:14

I have been following various threads on which there has been some discussion of this vendor who has sold various Pilot pens and ink on Amazon at very low prices. I thought I would weight in with my own experiences with this seller.

I have previously bought several bottles of Pilot Iroshizuku from this seller. The price has usually been one-third to half of the cheapest price I could have paid elsewhere. Shipping is usually very slow (it varies between a fortnight and month) but free. The inks are usually packaged in a padded envelope. It is a bit hit and miss as to whether the box is dented from its travels on arrival. Given the price, this vendor is my go to seller for this ink.

In mid March I became aware of the cheap prices he was selling various Pilot pens on Amazon.com. These prices were not matched on Amazon.co.uk. It seemed to me the prices were too good to be true but I decided to take the plunge and buy several of the pens. I chose to purchase using expedited shipping as I got a tracking number doing so.

I ordered the following - Amazon converted the prices into sterling I don't have a record of the price in dollars:

1 x Pilot 912 (stub nib) - £31.23
1 x Pilot 912 (coarse nib) - £43.74
1 x Pilot 912 (soft medium nib) - £37.08
1 x Pilot 742 (soft fine medium nib) -£36.87
1 x Pilot 912 (extra fine nib) - £31.65
1 x Pilot Custom Maple (medium nib) - £27.53
1 x Pilot 742 (medium nib) - £39.60
1 x Pilot 912 (broad nib) - £27.90
1 x Pilot Capless Black (medium nib) - £38.83
1 x Pilot Custom Maple (fine nib) - £39.03
1 x Pilot Capless Red. (fine nib) £38.28
1 x Pilot Capless Silver (fine nib) - £38.17

I placed four separate orders with between two and four pens in each order - not for any good reason. I just kept being drawn to placing a further order.

My wife uses the pens in my collection too but wanted to buy a pen as a gift. Accordingly, she subsequently placed a separate order for a Pilot 912 (broad nib) - £27.90. She too paid for expedited shipping.

All of our orders were placed by 19 March. The last such order being my wife's.

My order for items (1) and (2) (the 912s with stub and coarse nibs) were cancelled within 24 hours due to a lack of stock.

The first order to arrive was my wife's order (albeit it was placed last). The pen arrived as described. The pen itself was sealed in a transparent plastic wrapper as all new Pilot pens are. It came with all papers and tags attached. Delivery too two days longer than the earliest ETA given for expedited shipping.

The next order to arrive was for items (3) to (8). This order arrived four days later than the ETA given when the order was placed. The tracking number wasn't recognised by Japan Post until three days after it was supposedly shipped by the vendor. The pens arrived as described. They were are sealed in a transparent plastic wrapper as all new Pilot pens are. They all came with all papers and tags attached.

Finally, items (9) to (11) arrived yesterday. This order arrived nearly a week later than the ETA given when the order was placed. The tracking number wasn't recognised by Japan Post until three days before delivery. The pens arrived as described. They were are sealed in a transparent plastic wrapper as all new Pilot pens are. They all came with all papers and tags attached. The Pilot Capless pens have plated rather than 14k nibs - the nibs do not have the 14k stamp on them. I suspected the alloy nibs would be sent given the price and the fact that the description on amazon.com did not refer to the pens having gold nibs.

Item (12) should have been included with the final delivery. I emailed Santa Trading Japan (GBI) to query the non-delivery of this item and received a prompt response in which they apologised explained it was an error and stated that they will send out the missing pen by expedited delivery ASAP.

#2 Chrissy

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 14:30

I see that you are in the UK.

 

Were any of these stopped at UK Customs, and charged for?

 

I ordered a bottle of Pilot Iroshizuku ink from Santa Trading yesterday. I will be very disappointed if my box is squashed.


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#3 Faisel

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 15:05

I see that you are in the UK.
 
Were any of these stopped at UK Customs, and charged for?
 
I ordered a bottle of Pilot Iroshizuku ink from Santa Trading yesterday. I will be very disappointed if my box is squashed.


No. I've usually ordered ink one bottle at a time to avoid customs charges. I expected to get a slip from Parcel Force telling me that customs charges needed to be paid before my pens were delivered. However, the vendor declared a value of $20 for each shipment and marked them as a gift.

#4 Dubois

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 16:39

Nice little haul.  I ordered a Pilot 74 from Santa via Amazon.uk that arrived reasonably promptly, and on receipt, ordered a Prera demonstrator, which I expect to arrive next week.

 

I noticed that Amazon.fr has a black capless for €27, which I tried to order yesterday.  Alas, there was a "slight problem" in that it couldn't be delivered to my UK address.  Perhaps some French member might be luckier.


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The squat pen rests.

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#5 zchen

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Posted 02 April 2014 - 19:05

Well it seems like some get all the luck while my order from 3/14 gets canceled 16 days later because they are supposedly out of stock (was x1 Kaede and x1 912 EF). C'est la vie.


Edited by zchen, 02 April 2014 - 19:44.


#6 clear1

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 04:50

It seems like this seller sends out pens ordered with expedited shipping first.

 

I ordered with free shipping option. I got cancelled because this seller was 'out of stock', after 2 weeks.

 

About 20 people went through the same pathway. All were cancelled.

 

After 1~2 days after I ordered mine, my friend decided to order the same pen with expedited shipping.

 

She got her's.

 

While this seller was still selling the same pen at higher price, he/she cancelled my order because he/she was 'out of stock.'

 

Well, if it was an ebay aucton, the seller can sell the pen to whomever pays the most. I thought buying from Amazon meant something else.



#7 Faisel

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 08:40

I suspect that you're right as to why some orders are sent out but not others.

#8 Chrissy

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 09:02

It seems like this seller sends out pens ordered with expedited shipping first.

 

I ordered with free shipping option. I got cancelled because this seller was 'out of stock', after 2 weeks.

 

About 20 people went through the same pathway. All were cancelled.

 

After 1~2 days after I ordered mine, my friend decided to order the same pen with expedited shipping.

 

She got her's.

 

While this seller was still selling the same pen at higher price, he/she cancelled my order because he/she was 'out of stock.'

 

Well, if it was an ebay aucton, the seller can sell the pen to whomever pays the most. I thought buying from Amazon meant something else.

Maybe it would be worth advising Amazon about this


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#9 migo984

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 09:37

I recently (Feb/March) ordered 5 pens from this supplier. All with free shipping. All received with no problems, within about 3 weeks.


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#10 Brian C

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Posted 03 April 2014 - 10:28

It seems to me that this seller lists these pens at great prices, we pick up on it and swamp them with orders, at which time they have to cancel some. Seems like there are just a few of the really good deals and with all the advertising they are getting here I don't even bother checking them anymore.



#11 clear1

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Posted 04 April 2014 - 02:29

Maybe it would be worth advising Amazon about this

 

I did. Amazon said they will look into it. However, they say I will not be told of the result, due to some kind of privacy matter.



#12 rafapa

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Posted 04 April 2014 - 04:55

I did. Amazon said they will look into it. However, they say I will not be told of the result, due to some kind of privacy matter.


Same answer from amazon.

#13 Jdm dc2

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Posted 05 April 2014 - 20:37

What great prices on ink! I think I'll order a few. No big deal on the wait for me.

#14 rafapa

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Posted 06 April 2014 - 13:53

Amazon.com has reimbursed around 2/3 of the difference in price between the order cancelled by Santa and the one I placed (and was delivered) at amazon.co.uk.

Edited by rafapa, 06 April 2014 - 15:05.


#15 MrChar

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Posted 06 April 2014 - 16:01

Amazon.com has reimbursed around 2/3 of the difference in price between the order cancelled by Santa and the one I placed (and was delivered) at amazon.co.uk.

 

I have had nothing but great experiences with Amazon and their customer service, and they continue to impress! Glad to hear it!



#16 rube1

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Posted 06 April 2014 - 20:10

Received today a bottle of Iro Asa-gao from Santa Trading. Ordered on March 10. Padded envelope, box perfect. $21.70 including shipping.

#17 rgperedo

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Posted 05 May 2014 - 05:29

I just ordered a Pilot vanishing point (capless) and I didn't even get to choose if I wanted expedited shipping. It was free or nothing (which is usually fine) so I should be getting my pen within the month. I'll keep everyone updated so you know how it pans out and you can then decide for yourself what the deal is with this seller. Keeping my fingers crossed.



#18 rgperedo

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Posted 28 May 2014 - 22:46

I got the Vanishing Point in today. I'm very happy with it. I think someone mentioned it earlier but it's a gold plated steel nib. It writes nice and smooth. It didn't come with a converter (I believe Vanishing Points usually come with a Con-50, correct me if i'm wrong) or a cartridge. It was an empty cartridge you just fill with ink ( I used a dull pouted syringe). I am very happy with the pen. It writes nice and best of all I save over $55 on this vanishing point. I'm not at all distraught about the gold nib. I will be using this pen for notes so I rather it be more economic than have a gold nib. I hope that helps someone about making a decision on that seller on Amazon. Cheers



#19 dunhamsa

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 06:56

I have ordered pens from them twice and had no problems. I did not try on items that were discussed widely here, which may have contributed to my orders going through quickly.

#20 erpe

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Posted 29 May 2014 - 10:19

i have ordered twice from Santa, both times slow but no problems, The Prera is about 1/3 of the RRP here, the yellow Lucina is not even sold here (cadmium dye apparently, not sure how to check that). I guess I will order at least one more Prera.



#21 pdc13

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 03:52

 

I did. Amazon said they will look into it. However, they say I will not be told of the result, due to some kind of privacySa

Santa Trading Japan appears to be withdrawing from Amazon. I just looked at their storefront and there are less than 300 items, mostly candy, being offered. Ahhh!!



#22 Zanshin

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 06:51

That's interesting, I ordered a Prera from Santa Trading a few weeks ago, which arrived in ten days, and some Misubishi Uni pencils last week which Amazon tell have been dispatched.. They had plenty on their Amazon UK storefront last week but absolutely nothing today, not a single item.

 

I have noticed quite a few similar operations have sprung up with low prices, albeit not the very low prices that Santa was offering for fountain pens, but quite a few sell Iroshizuku. I've placed a few low value orders to test the waters with Deputi Japan, Japan Sub-Cultures, Sukiyaki JP and MK Japan. The order from MK Japan was another Prera and took three weeks, arriving a couple of days after the Santa Trading order which was placed a week later. The other orders were only put in last week so haven't arrived yet.


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#23 erpe

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 07:04

would not be good if they really stop, I have some things from them on my Amazon wishlist. I have seen before that some stores go and a few weeks later a new store pops-up with similar offers. Patience is in order. Anyway, with every delivery comes an e-mail address for service questions, maybe I will try to contact them there to see what's happening. I will check my archive in the next days.



#24 Chrissy

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Posted 03 August 2014 - 07:58

I bought one bottle of PI ink from Santa, but it arrived with the box slightly damaged. I found a cheaper source on ebay for the rest of the PI ink I wanted. It's packed much better and arrives quicker.

 

I also bought a Prera from Santa, and that arrived safely although it took a long time.

 

I wasn't able to select any alternate shipping method with Santa either.


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#25 stephanos

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 14:28

I ordered a Prera from Santa Trading at the end of March (free postage) and it arrived in perfect condition after a few weeks.

I'm still waiting for a bottle of Iroshizuku, which I ordered in July (also free postage), but as it's still within the delivery estimate I'm not too worried.

 

I've also had good experience with the seller, Japan-Subcultures, on Amazon - I ordered a CON-70 converter last month, with free standard postage, and it arrived about a fortnight later in perfect condition.



#26 NCGibbon

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Posted 04 August 2014 - 16:31

I ordered a Prera from Santa Trading at the end of March (free postage) and it arrived in perfect condition after a few weeks.

I'm still waiting for a bottle of Iroshizuku, which I ordered in July (also free postage), but as it's still within the delivery estimate I'm not too worried.

 

I've also had good experience with the seller, Japan-Subcultures, on Amazon - I ordered a CON-70 converter last month, with free standard postage, and it arrived about a fortnight later in perfect condition.

I placed an order last week for one and am waiting for it to arrive.  Did yours come with the converter or will I need to go out and purchase one?



#27 pdc13

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 02:27

I ordered a Prera from Santa Trading at the end of March (free postage) and it arrived in perfect condition after a few weeks.

I'm still waiting for a bottle of Iroshizuku, which I ordered in July (also free postage), but as it's still within the delivery estimate I'm not too worried.

 

I've also had good experience with the seller, Japan-Subcultures, on Amazon - I ordered a CON-70 converter last month, with free standard postage, and it arrived about a fortnight later in perfect condition.

Coincidentally, I had noticed J-Subculture on Amazon as well. When I did a search on Google, I came up with their website, http://www.j-subculture.com/  which I've been looking at for the last couple of days.

 

Very interesting! Pilot Iroshizuku inks... 1143 Yen = approx. US$ 11.23 (Go here http://www.j-subcult...9FB3A2C28AEC4E4 ...and look under Fountain Pen/Pilot   pages 9-11). There are some other pretty good deals and not just Japanese products. You will even come across some used fountain pens on Yahoo Japan auction. I've come across items that I haven't seen before...Playboy brand ink, anyone?

 

These people are software developers (former?) that started this business. They've recently hired native English and German language staff which is a big plus. Well, no sense in me trying to explain everything. Here is their How To page: http://www.j-subcult...om/pages/how_to

 

Seriously, have a look and see what you think.

 

Paul


Edited by pdc13, 05 August 2014 - 02:50.


#28 stephanos

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Posted 05 August 2014 - 08:28

I placed an order last week for one and am waiting for it to arrive.  Did yours come with the converter or will I need to go out and purchase one?

 

The Prera came with a converter, IIRC.

 

Edit: in my original comment, I mentioned ordering a converter: that was for a different pen, sorry for any unintended confusion (actually, I don't think the CON-70 would fit into the Prera)


Edited by stephanos, 05 August 2014 - 08:32.


#29 janelle

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 13:08

I placed an order last week for one and am waiting for it to arrive.  Did yours come with the converter or will I need to go out and purchase one?

The demo Preras come with a Con-50 converter installed; for the opaque ones you have to buy them separately.



#30 NCGibbon

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Posted 06 August 2014 - 16:08

The demo Preras come with a Con-50 converter installed; for the opaque ones you have to buy them separately.

Great thank you.  I ordered the dark blue demo so I should be good to go.  Now it is a waiting game.  I think Amazon said it was going to arrive by late September.  Shoooooo.