I wanted to get thing rollings with this group buy, and allow everyone to know how I’m thinking we can do this.
I will say this from the very beginning....I've done group buys in the past that were not organized well, and they were logistical nightmares. I want to make sure this doesn’t become one of those, for your sake and mine.
So bottom line, I'll spell out exactly how this will need to happen. I’ll do my best to accommodate the wishes of as many people as possible, but ultimately this group buy has to be something easy for us to provide, otherwise we can’t offer the pens at the prices you’re hoping. So I will take all factors into consideration, but ultimately the final guidelines and "terms" for how this will be done will be set by me.
So here's how this will run...
1. There will be no official FPN involvement, other than allowing us to run some logistics within the forum. (THANKS MODS!) I've spoken with the moderators, and everything is still settling with the recent FPN LE pens, and they understandably are not ready to get involved with another quite yet.
2. Distribution of pens and handling of funds will happen through Brian and Rachel of the Goulet Pen Company.
3. In order to participate, you will need to pay in full prior to any manufacturing. We will have a set time period when payments will be accepted. Once this time period has passed, we will have a total number of pens. After this, we will not accept any more orders. We will then order materials. Once they arrive, we will start manufacturing. Understand that this means that there could be 1 to 3 months between when you pay and when you receive your pen. I'm giving 1-3 months as a ballpark. The actual time involved will depend on how many pens we are making. Once we have a final number, I will have an accurate (albeit still estimated) timeline.
4. You will see a prototype version of the final pen prior to making any commitment.
5. The pen to be made has already been decided via the group poll. It will be a clipped Pearl, cartridge/converter.
6. Ebonite can be done, but price will be higher than acrylic, as ebonite is very expensive. Price is yet to be determined, but I would anticipate an acrylic pen to lie between $160-175, and an ebonite pen to lie between $175-195.
7. Steel nibs only. If you wish to have an 18k nib, then you will need to buy the pen with the steel nib, and then contact me after you receive the pen for an 18k upgrade (nibs unscrew to interchange).
8. There will be no nib customizations available. Only XF, F, M, or B. You will need to handle any nib customizations aftermarket.
9. The pen will be engraved as a Numbered Limited Edition. Exactly what this pen will be called is yet to be determined. Probably something like "2012 Pearl LE #XX of XX".
10. If no more than 35 pens are paid for within the designated time period, then we will not do the project. We aren’t able to commit the time needed to manufacture this pen unless we can have at least this many sold. If we are at this point, we can possibly extend the time period if needed. If we still don’t sell more than 35, money will be refunded to those who payed.
11. Requests for a specific number within the edition will not be honored. You cannot request #1, or any other specific number.
12. In addition to the cost of the pen, there will be shipping charges, of course. International friends can certainly participate, but appropriate international shipping fees will apply.
I think that's it.
Here's what will happen going forward...
A. I have attached a poll to this thread. Simply click "Yes, I Would Do It", or "No Thanks". You are not committed to anything by voting, but please try to be honest. We are trying to gauge the scope and size of this project with this poll.
B. In about a week or so, I will start a poll with materials choices, both ebonite and acrylic. The material with the highest number of votes will be the pen.
C. We will then have a time period when pens can be purchased. You will pay the Goulet Pen Company in full. Once this time period has passed, we will have a final count. No orders will be accepted after this time period, no exceptions.
D. Materials will then be ordered.
E. Manufacturing will begin. I will start a thread that will give regular updates on the project. I will include progress photos and also perhaps videos so you can watch your pens being “born”.
F. Once the project is complete, all pens will be shipped to The Goulet Pen Company for distribution to each of you.
Sound good? Any questions? Please vote in the poll above, and like I said, please try to be honest and accurate to your true intentions. We need to get a good idea as to the size of the project.
Edited by bgray, 28 February 2012 - 02:17.