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Sorry Twsbi,. It's Over.


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87 replies to this topic

#41 Jamerelbe

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 07:54

@Honeybadgers, if you looked carefully over the earlier posts, you'd see that @AmandaW purchased her pen from a local (Australian) vendor - who refused to address the problem because (they claimed) TWSBI insisted on looking after this themselves.  THIS WAS NOT A GREY MARKET PURCHASE.  TWSBI for their part offered to send a replacement nib, but with no assurance that it would fix the problem.  I agree, this seems (to me) like a bad faith action on the part of the vendor (which TWSBI did little to ameliorate).

 

As far as TWSBI's customer service goes, I've always found them helpful - the deal with Aussies the same way they do anyone elsewhere in the world, sending replacement parts from their offices in Taiwan.  But I can understand Amanda being frustrated that the seller refused to take the product back - frankly, under Australian law, I don't think they have the right to "duck-shove" the problem to the manufacturer rather than issue a refund for a faulty product (though this *may* be a reflection of TWSBI's policy, I don't know).  

 

I don't think there's much to be gained by pounding the OP for expressing their opinion.  They had a bad experience with the purchase of this pen, and it's fair enough that they should be frustrated at the lack of resolution.  It's easy for you and me to say that we could just fix the problem for ourselves (most of the cheap pens I buy from China need a bit of tweaking, and I've gotten used to having to do it!), but the 'regular' fountain pen user should, I think, be entitled to expect that pen writes well out of the box.  Either that, or that the vendor (if they're local, as in this case) will co-operate in a refund or exchange.



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#42 max dog

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 11:22

In all the times I needed warranty service and I had to deal directly with the manufacturer, I had to cover shipping costs to send the pen. The manufacturer fixes or replaces the pen and ships it back to me at their own cost. Would the OP preferred to have shipped the pen to TWSBI at her expense (industry std) and have TWSBI send the pen back with a new nib with shipping at TWSBI expense? TWSBI offered good service in this case by offering to send a new nib without even checking the original nib. Asking the OP to cover shipping cost is reasonable, given she would have had to pay for shiiping if she had to send the pen in. Her issue is with the vendor. Go to any manufacturer like Parker or Pelikan and tell them well my new nib is scratchy, please send me a new one, and Im not paying shipping. I dont think it will happen. You would have to send the pen in so they can check it.

If anything TWSBI should be commended here for good customer service. Shows they really care.

Edited by max dog, 20 June 2020 - 11:47.


#43 Brianm-14-FRMS

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Posted 20 June 2020 - 12:48

Each person has to decide for her- or himself where the cut-off line is for what constitute adequate customer service. It is something to carefully bear in mind when picking a product: if something goes wrong, am I likely to be satisfied by the support I receive, or can I just write the item off and call it a day?

Having lived in Western Australia for a while, I understand the special circumstances involved in obtaining some items. But I also look at it this way. Maybe TWSBI comes to the point where they find it is not worth the cost and effort to make their product available in places where support is difficult to provide. There are, after all, two sides to every such situation. Just something to consider.

TWSBI seems to come in for more than its fair share of criticism, largely because they seem to have fixed a number of oroblem which used to plague their pens, such as frequent barrel cracks, yet that legacy of criticism lives on. One cannot mention this company without knee-jerk reflex criticisms pouring forth.

I have, and heavily use, four of their Eco pens in my college teaching and professional writing. I only purchased them, one-by-one, once I felt the QC issues had largely been addresed. Years later, the continued excellent performance of these pens attests to the maturity of the company's penmaking skills. All four perform well above their price point. May e we need to move beyond TWSBI bashing unless it is about a current product (like that detestable joke, the GO!).

So I DO sympathize with the OP, and recognize that her experience differs from mine. Mine is one of pleasure and satisfaction, her's of frustration. She should probably find a home for her TWSBIs on here, someone who will tinker with those pens. And we should not criticize her if she diesn't want to swap nibs in and out. Clearly, she wasn't knowingly buying into that situation, no matter how easy it might be!

I do not at all agree with the poster who says we should all learn to use micromesh. I am willing to thoroughly clean my pens, use a brass shim and ultrasonic, straighten some tines or even re-sac an Esterbrook, but I limit my use of micromesh and such to $2 Chinese pens I give to interested students. That obviously leaves my TWSBI ECOs out. There's one Eco I'd like smothed as an experiment, and I'll get it done sometime, maybe at a Pen show.

I tend toward thinking TWSBI comes off okay in this in terms of customer service. But the OP clearly doesn't agree. If so, she should move on, and put her TWSBI pens up here on Pay it Forward, for whoever will assume the cost of shipping. She doesn't need to justify her feelings or actions to anyone, just as none of us have to agree with her.
Brian

#44 Hanoi

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Posted 21 June 2020 - 16:08

I am really surprised by this thread.  I only hear good things about Twsbi.



#45 Honeybadgers

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 02:41

I am really surprised by this thread.  I only hear good things about Twsbi.

 

The general "bad" themes the brand has are an annoying and rude USA service rep (but he does always resolve the problem satisfactorily, you just come away from it mildly insulted and/or patronized) and a few models still seem to have cracking problems, which does confuse me that they haven't fixed them yet. The issue seems to be mostly resolved, but there are still the occasional cracks.

 

The nibs are generally very reliable and problem free, but it is a cheap mass market pen, so expecting that they all be hand tested before shipping is a bit silly.


Selling a boatload of restored, fairly rare, vintage Japanese gold nib pens, click here to see (more added as I finish restoring them)


#46 Honeybadgers

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 02:43

@Honeybadgers, if you looked carefully over the earlier posts, you'd see that @AmandaW purchased her pen from a local (Australian) vendor - who refused to address the problem because (they claimed) TWSBI insisted on looking after this themselves.  THIS WAS NOT A GREY MARKET PURCHASE.  TWSBI for their part offered to send a replacement nib, but with no assurance that it would fix the problem.  I agree, this seems (to me) like a bad faith action on the part of the vendor (which TWSBI did little to ameliorate).

 

That was my point. It's okay to be upset. at the vendor. But it's absurd to look at a drawer full of $400 worth of perfectly good writing pens that you obviously liked enough to collect a lot of, and say "bad experience that has nothing to do with the brand, just gonna decide I hate all of them now"

 

That's my only problem. Her annoyance is absolutely reasonable, just misplaced.


Selling a boatload of restored, fairly rare, vintage Japanese gold nib pens, click here to see (more added as I finish restoring them)


#47 Jamerelbe

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 03:27

 

That was my point. It's okay to be upset. at the vendor. But it's absurd to look at a drawer full of $400 worth of perfectly good writing pens that you obviously liked enough to collect a lot of, and say "bad experience that has nothing to do with the brand, just gonna decide I hate all of them now"

 

That's my only problem. Her annoyance is absolutely reasonable, just misplaced.

 

Yes and no.  Here's a quote from an earlier message by OP:

 

The retailer lost a customer because, instead of swapping the pen, they said TWSBI will not allow them to handle it. TWSBI blamed Jowo and wanted me to pay and wait for international shipping (how long was that going to take in the current situation?) 

 

If that's true (and not just the vendor trying to dodge accountability), then there may be a bit of blame to share around...



#48 jchch1950

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 03:41

I have several Twsbi pens. One of them had a problem with the plastic near the nib and the importer to Thailand took care of it without any excuse . I'm happy with them and I think they are good pens for the price.I only wish they will introduce more models in one semitransparent colour, without the transparent ink section.  :D I will continue to buy them and to offer them as gifts to close friends.


Edited by jchch1950, 22 June 2020 - 03:44.


#49 Glenn-SC

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 20:37

 

If that's true (and not just the vendor trying to dodge accountability), then there may be a bit of blame to share around...

+1



#50 Intensity

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 22:20

Recently I was looking at another air conditioner, and a particular model I wanted was listed on Amazon.  Upon a careful scan of the vendor list, it turned out the cheapest listing was by a vendor with some questionable policies.  For example (bold emphasis is mine):

 

"Our policy lasts 14 days. If 14 days have gone by since your purchase, unfortunately we can’t offer you a refund or exchange.

 

Returned merchandise MUST be unused and with the original packaging including the accessories, manuals and warranty cards."

 

"Defective Units:

If you received a defective unit, please keep in mind that most manufacturers may require a service call to diagnose the problem before RA is issued. All defective appliances and tv's will be serviced by the manufacturer under manufacturer warranty before RA is issued. When a product needs to be returned please contact us to receive an RA number. All merchandise defects will be verified by our returns department prior to shipment of the replacement. If a replacement is not available we will credit you for the original price paid for the product. If your product is missing parts please contact the manufacturer first to receive your full manifest."

 

Needless to say, I ran from that vendor.  Not only do they state they can refuse return of any item that was opened, turned on, and turned out to be Dead on Arrival, but they will also make it a hassle for the customer to deal with such a situation.  I do not know which vendor the OP used, but this is all to say that there are all kinds with all sorts of policies on how they will deal with returns, exchanges, and defect issues.

 

(There was also this gem:

"Damaged Shipments During Delivery/Transit:

It is important that you inspect each delivery before accepting your merchandise. If you notice your product is damaged refuse the package and note the damage on the "bill of lading". Please contact us by email. within 24 hours ("concealed damages" that are noticed after boxes are opened can only be reported within 24 hrs of delivery).If you have received a defective unit, most manufacturers  require at least one service call to diagnose the issue." )


Edited by Intensity, 22 June 2020 - 22:22.

“I admit it, I'm surprised that fountain pens are a hobby. ... it's a bit like stumbling into a fork convention - when you've used a fork all your life.” 


#51 Glenn-SC

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 22:39

Recently I was looking at another air conditioner, and a particular model I wanted was listed on Amazon.  Upon a careful scan of the vendor list, it turned out the cheapest listing was by a vendor with some questionable policies.  For example (bold emphasis is mine):

 

And this applies how to this TWSBI?



#52 Intensity

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Posted 22 June 2020 - 22:55

Needless to say, I ran from that vendor.  Not only do they state they can refuse return of any item that was opened, turned on, and turned out to be Dead on Arrival, but they will also make it a hassle for the customer to deal with such a situation.  I do not know which vendor the OP used, but this is all to say that there are all kinds with all sorts of policies on how they will deal with returns, exchanges, and defect issues.
 

 

And this applies how to this TWSBI?

 

There's no need to be rude.  I was referring to the recent discussion in this thread about vendor policies.


“I admit it, I'm surprised that fountain pens are a hobby. ... it's a bit like stumbling into a fork convention - when you've used a fork all your life.” 


#53 Honeybadgers

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Posted 23 June 2020 - 00:54

 

Yes and no.  Here's a quote from an earlier message by OP:

 

The retailer lost a customer because, instead of swapping the pen, they said TWSBI will not allow them to handle it. TWSBI blamed Jowo and wanted me to pay and wait for international shipping (how long was that going to take in the current situation?) 

 

If that's true (and not just the vendor trying to dodge accountability), then there may be a bit of blame to share around...

 

I would argue very strongly that the seller she purchased from is lying through their teeth and/or breaking the law. Here in the USA, there is no way a company can prevent a vendor from accepting a return or exchange. And our consumer protection laws are garbage compared to AU and UK.

 

The example Intensity is referring to is from an illegal grey market resaler who is not an authorized dealer, and therefore cannot return products they accept in return to the parent company, therefore they only accept returns that they can turn around and resell again. It's common among fraudulent and shady businesses, but it's also illegal. Lots of Amazon retailers are selling counterfeit and fraudulent items (fake "name brand" SD cards that claim to be multiple terabytes for only $20, but in reality are just software flashed 128mb trash made to trick your computer into thinking they're 2tb, there were lots of counterfeit listings for pelikan and MB pens for like $30, or counterfeit parker sonnets, etc.) it's just the nature of Amazon's model, and since a judge ruled that Amazon is liable for dangerous or counterfeit products sold on their website, they've gotten much stricter, but the scams do still come and go.


Edited by Honeybadgers, 23 June 2020 - 01:01.

Selling a boatload of restored, fairly rare, vintage Japanese gold nib pens, click here to see (more added as I finish restoring them)


#54 Jamerelbe

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Posted 23 June 2020 - 01:08

 

I would argue very strongly that the seller she purchased from is lying through their teeth and/or breaking the law. Here in the USA, there is no way a company can prevent a vendor from accepting a return or exchange. And our consumer protection laws are garbage compared to AU and UK.

 

That's my understanding also, but in my experience vendors will often trade on the fact that most customers don't understand their entitlements - or themselves (as retailers) assume that their distributors can make and enforce warranty stipulations that run counter to Australian consumer law.  I've found on occasion that threatening to complain to the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, our consumer law 'watchdog') was sufficient to overcome the vendor's reluctance to give a refund on a faulty product - but it's a big hammer to wield, and Aussies as consumers are often too "nice" to take that step!)



#55 Glenn-SC

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Posted 23 June 2020 - 07:02

 
There's no need to be rude.  I was referring to the recent discussion in this thread about vendor policies.

Excuse me, but how was that rude?
The Vendor made no such extreme claims or requirements, they only said that the Manufacturer specified that only they could handle any repair/replacement.

Edited by Glenn-SC, 23 June 2020 - 10:16.


#56 Rymesis

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Posted 04 July 2020 - 10:18

In Australia it's more than $40. And a lot to pay for something that doesn't work properly. The disappointment of being let down by both retailer and manufacturer is beyond measuring.

 

My husband worked on it. He made it write, but it's no longer EF. More like a tiny stub. I hate it. And every other pen in the TWSBI drawer.

 

Lemons are sour.

 

 

Why hate every other good writing TWSBI pen you have?

 

I can understand the frustration of getting a bad nib, my first fountain pen had one along with a feed that couldn't keep up with a fine nib, but that doesn't mean that all the pens are junk; If I followed that logic, I would've thrown it in a drawer and forgotten about fountain pens since they seemed like a scratchy, terribly writing and expensive waste of time.

 

Even if your new pen doesn't write as an EF, you can still enjoy the pen. I have nibs that are suppose to be 1.1 stubs and write as mediums, and mediums that write like a wet broad, for me it gives the pen more character, and I already have multiple nib sizes if I really want to write in a particular size.

 

 

On a side note, have you tried tuning the nib to have less ink flow? If you already hate it, then you don't have anything to loose; just hold the pen with the nib facing upside down as if to write with the top-side, press the tines against the page and put your thumb on the feeder and gently flex the tines, I imagine being an EF it doesn't take much pressure, but if changes don't happen when you write in the correct orientation, then try it again and slowly use more pressure.

It may seem daunting and be scary that you'll ruin a nib, but if you take it slow and be careful, it will be fine. It's possible that when your husband worked on the nib that he used a little too much pressure and spread the tines apart, making it have a wider line


Edited by Rymesis, 04 July 2020 - 10:19.


#57 Bill Wood

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Posted 05 July 2020 - 14:45

The OP should expect a new nib unit. Failing that you could smooth and adjust with the suitable supples. 
After changing cracked barrels so many times I gave up.

 

Solution in two words ..... Lamy Safari.



#58 markofp

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Posted 09 July 2020 - 21:41

I have to confess that I am starting to feel some of the OP's pain. I purchased one of the new Rose Golds recently. The other day I took it apart to flush it, like I have done many many times with previous 580s. When I went to replace the piston assembly into the barrel, something jammed somehow. The pison would not move up or down, and I could no longer get the assembly off the barrel without a pair of gas pliers and considerable force. Even off the barrel, the whole piston unit is jammed. The piston moves well enough on the screw rod, but once threaded through the connector everything sticks tight. I looked very carefully at the parts and compared them to another 580, but I cannot see the issue.

 

Phillip is going to look around for a replacement unit for me, and that's kind, but I am starting to develop an intense frustration with the fragility of these pens, a lack of robustness if you will. TWSBI sends wrenches with their pens and to some extent encourages disassembly, but more and more it seems that if you miss by one thread, then you've done some damage you're not going to easily recover from. Even though I love the look of the 580, all of this is getting tiresome. 



#59 Flaxmoore

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Posted 16 July 2020 - 17:38

Me to a T.

 

I've had one, a Vac 700. I've replaced more parts on this damn thing than any other pen I've ever owned. Barrel (at threads), cap (sheared at cap ring), feed tube/holder twice. The new barrel already has thread cracking despite being hand-tightened and barely used. The only parts never replaced are plunger, nib and section.

 

I've used a lot of pens in my life. I've never had one as fragile as TWSBI's demonstrators. 

 

I also got tired of the implicit accusation.

 

Maybe you dropped it.

Maybe you overtightened it.

Maybe you damaged it.

 

I've a pile of pens, from $3 Platinum Preppys to $200 Sailor 1911s. I've never had a pen overtly break. I've written so much with my old Metro that the section threads are basically gone after years of unscrew/fill cycles. Still never had a single problem.

 

They're just not worth the trouble.

I have given up on TWSBI as well.  I just got really tired of cracked barrels.  I replaced them so many times.  I finally pulled the nibs and dumped the pens in the trash. 


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#60 InkJotter

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Posted 17 July 2020 - 19:27

I am really surprised by this thread.  I only hear good things about Twsbi.

I'm really surprised that it's only good things you have heard. 

 

Tried Twsbi when it launched and it's in the trash pile somewhere.  While many were buzzing rapturously about how great the pen was because if something went wrong free replacement parts were sent, I thought that was the craziest thing I've ever heard of--to be happy about a pen poorly made to begin with but "great" because a consumer could fix it again and again and again....the logic escapes me.  I tried the 2nd generation Twsbi after the company acknowledged it needed some re-engineering to deal with faulty components.  It hit the trash pile faster than the first one.  Again, the  community waxing over great customer service and how it was an ideal pen for beginners.  Hardly since most want a pen that can write without breaking or "tweaking".   Cheap is not synonymous with beginner. 

 

Twsbi must be one of the cheapest made on the market to still be shipping free replacement parts this late in the game.  I'd be embarrassed to recommend such a pen, let alone sell it. I've purchased what are considered "cheap" pens from India and China that come out of the plastic wrapper writing better and lasting longer that Twsbi.

 

So when the OP posted frustration, it's splitting hairs as to where the responsibility lies.  Truly the manufacturer given it's illustrious history of badly made pens does have some culpability in the transaction.  How much is semantics.  But I feel for the OP for daring to post anything wrong about Twsbi-the pen or the company or the vendor.

 

May the free parts flow unencumbered forever.








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