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Massdrop Experience


ralfstc
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Hi folks,

 

Just thought I'd share my experience on Massdrop for anybody who is interested.

 

I have bought two pens from them. The first was a matte black vanishing point. I actually bought this a s a present and then the recipient turned out not to want it. Anyway, I "joined the drop" as the cool kids say on October 13 and it was shipped November 3. It arrived at my home in Canada on November 19. In addition to the $104 US I paid $17 US shipping and $16 CDN customs, so the total cost in hand was about $135. That's a saving, but not an incredible saving, and of course I was not supporting the Goulets or anybody else.

 

I also ordered a Lamy 2000 (there has to be one I like). I paid for this on October 22, and it has still not been shipped (today is November 25). The Massdrop model is that the distributor ships the product to MD AFTER the "drop is complete" as the cool kids also say. So in this case the distributor had to find 235 2Ks in varying nib sizes. Apparently they then shipped them to totally the wrong state. Eventually they will get to MD, who will unpack them all, sort them out, and re-package them for shipping. Since the shipping took 16 days last time, even if MD ship the Lamys today (and they are saying it'll be at least another 3 or 4 days) it'll be December 10 before they reach here, and again the cost will be ~$135.

 

MD's communication is decent, and they are transparent about the reasons for the delay (even though it's just mind-boggling that the address got messed up for over $20,000 worth of merchandise). The savings are reasonable, though not world-shattering. To whom we would return the Lamys if there is a problem is not clear, particularly for Canadian folks. Is this covered by US or Canadian warranty?

 

I'm glad I played with Massdrop, but I don't think, on balance, that I will again. LONG delays are no fun- after all, it's not a Nakaya- and the discounts are really just paying you for waiting so that they don't have to hold inventory. I find the shopping experience far more satisfying from the Goulets, from the marketplace here or, forgive me, even from eBay.

 

Cheers,

 

Ralf

Edited by ralfstc
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I like that they keep us updated on a regular basis. Not too worried about speed ... I think I can find a pen or two to write with until the 2K arrives :D

 

I can see how it's most cost effective for US buyers (no customs of course and most -- but not all -- products ship free or close to) ... $105 for a brand new L2K is pretty good.

 

Although at this rate it will be slower to arrive than my custom Mina (which I bought with the understanding that Brian had a 5 week queue at the time)

 

-k

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A while ago, we were actively approached to join Massdrop as FPN, somehow in a co-operative type of way.

 

Considering what I heard up to that point about MD, is similar to what you are sharing here, and as a result we politely declined.

 

Warm regards, Wim

the Mad Dutchman
laugh a little, love a little, live a lot; laugh a lot, love a lot, live forever

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I am also in the current Lamy 2000 drop. Christ! I am in love with the savings, but we have had numerous delays, with no promise or even estimate from the actual entity itself of when they will even get the pen.

 

It's been over a month now, and I just don't understand how $20,000 of pens gets shipped to the wrong state. Also, if you go the full MSRP of the pen it is really like $49,000 in merchandise.

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So far, I've tried two Massdrop purchases as well. The first one was an isograph set, which was "on site" with limited quantity and shipped immediately. That was great.

I'm in a second "drop" for some gaming cards (yes, I have multiple expensive hobbies :headsmack: ) Those still haven't shipped. And it's been over 2 weeks since the drop ended. :gaah: :(

 

So far, I find the Massdrop prices just a tad lower than amazon and definitely not worth the shipping hassel. I'd rather support one of the other fine FP shops and get my stuff in a relatively reasonable time.

'How often have I said to you that when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth?'


Sherlock Holmes Quote


-The Sign of Four

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Actually, I'd expect for the quantities they would buy, that they would get a discount of anything between 20% and 40% on the retail price, and occasionally more.

 

If the difference in price is really only a few percentage points at most below what Amazon has on offer, someone must be scoring quite nicely.

 

Just an observation.

 

Warm regards, Wim

the Mad Dutchman
laugh a little, love a little, live a lot; laugh a lot, love a lot, live forever

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I've bought from Massdrop 3 times - and would happily do so again. I agree that the waiting times can be a nuisance - but that's true for almost anywhere, when the shipment has to reach Australian shores!

They're pretty quick once they leave the MD warehouse, though.

 

The one point I'm not sure I agree with is your comments re price - it does vary, and the Vanishing Point was a good deal rather than a great deal (though I'm not complaining)... but the Lamy 2000 prices, especially the stainless steel, were pretty stellar. Unfortunately, I'd just purchased a makrolon version (for $20 more, but still $25 below retail)...

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I see, thank you for the additional information.

 

I have to say that personally, I prefer online retailers with brick & mortar stores, however. I'd like them to stay around, and I'll gladly pay the relatively small premium.

 

Warm regards, Wim

the Mad Dutchman
laugh a little, love a little, live a lot; laugh a lot, love a lot, live forever

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So basically its not worth it? Anyone tried rakuten?

 

I'm not sure I'd say it's not worth it. I think that for folk in the US, especially patient folk, it almost definitely can be worth it. You just need to know what to expect in terms of timing. I should perhaps underline that nobody has ever suggested that Massdrop are not absolutely honest in their dealings-- their business model simply exposes the makings of the sausage more than other online retail approaches. You pays your money . . . .

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I'm with Jamerelbe - Massdrop is great for us Australians and our exorbitant local prices. I've participated on both the Pilot VP and Falcon drops, both times getting pen, bottle of iroshizuku and shipping for about the same as I would pay for just the pen without shipping from a normal US online retailer. Both took about 6 weeks from the end of the drop to arriving on my desk at work.

 

I wonder if they just underestimated the amount of interest they would get when they suddenly ramped up their pen offerings back in October. If they had estimated lower numbers to their supplier, it would make sense that they would have a delay in sourcing the products which is what happened with both Pilot pens. Ive seen some people participate in recent Lamy drops and report getting their pens within a couple of weeks. I'm still living in hope of some more Pilot pen + Iroshizuku drops, I've been quietly watching for a Custom 74 or Heritage 92 drop to add to the collection and I still need a bottle of Ku-Jaku :)

Pelikan M205 F Rohrer & Klingner Verdigris - Pilot VP F Iroshizuku Kon-peki - Pilot Falcon SF Iroshizuku Tsutsuji

Lamy Safari EF Noodlers Black - Lamy Al Star 1.1 Private Reserve Rose Rage - Lamy Safari F Diamine Flamingo Pink - Lamy Al Star F Waterman Inspired Blue

TWSBI 580AL F - Omas Violet - TWSBI 580AL M De Atramentis Sherlock Holmes - TWSBI Vac700 F - Diamine Grey

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MassDrop for me has been a wonderful experience and I applaud them introducing us to all sorts of cutting edge technology and quality. I've gotten Lamy 2000, Rotring, am looking forward to the Franklin Christophe pen case and me and the pooches are enjoying the Sunwayman flashlight on our walks. Nothing but great experiences. Yes, you need to be patient; that's what a group buy is all about :)

 

For the question about Rakuten, they are an amazing retailer that stands by their products.

 

You really cannot compare MassDrop to a leading retailer like Goulet or Jetpens as these folks ship quickly at a fair price and on demand, whether you're buying a sample vial of ink or a big stash.

Best regards,
Steve Surfaro
Fountain Pen Fun
Cities of the world (please visit my Facebook page for more albums)
Paris | Venezia

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Experience with Massdrop has been decent for me. I bought my Lamy 2000 from the drop in October. It shipped on the date mentioned on the site and arrived fairly quick. I had no problems with my Lamy 2000 and working very well so far. I would buy from them again if the price is good enough for the pens I want.

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I am also in the current Lamy2000 drop. This was my first purchase with MD! In the last month, I've been in 4 other drops and two have completed, one for a very nice pair of LE headphones and one for a grooming kit. For the price of $105 for a new Lamy2000, I don't mind the wait and I am glad MD gave us an update.

 

The grooming kit is being offered again with the lowest price about $7 less than my lowest price. The price may have been negotiated down because several in the discussion mentioned that amazon.com had it for about the same price. MD does listen to what the community has to say about the products, price-wise or quality-wise, and tries to take comments into consideration. At least that's my impression during this last month.

Edited by penultress
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I bought one of the prior Lamy 2000 drops, and it was without any trouble. I've bought a couple other things, too. They are slow, but they warn you. You do have to be careful because the savings are not always astonishing. In general, they do what they say they'll do.

 

I'm seriously looking at the Pelikan M600 now...

--

Lou Erickson - Handwritten Blog Posts

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I'm with Jamerelbe - Massdrop is great for us Australians and our exorbitant local prices. I've participated on both the Pilot VP and Falcon drops, both times getting pen, bottle of iroshizuku and shipping for about the same as I would pay for just the pen without shipping from a normal US online retailer. Both took about 6 weeks from the end of the drop to arriving on my desk at work.

 

I wonder if they just underestimated the amount of interest they would get when they suddenly ramped up their pen offerings back in October. If they had estimated lower numbers to their supplier, it would make sense that they would have a delay in sourcing the products which is what happened with both Pilot pens. Ive seen some people participate in recent Lamy drops and report getting their pens within a couple of weeks. I'm still living in hope of some more Pilot pen + Iroshizuku drops, I've been quietly watching for a Custom 74 or Heritage 92 drop to add to the collection and I still need a bottle of Ku-Jaku :)

 

You could just get them from engeika, he is having a free shipping promo now for orders over $99. Bought from him a couple times, no hassles and fast shipping to Singapore :)

Never pick a fight with people who buy ink by the barrel.

~ Mark Twain

----------------

Pen and Inkstagram!

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You really cannot compare MassDrop to a leading retailer like Goulet or Jetpens as these folks ship quickly at a fair price and on demand, whether you're buying a sample vial of ink or a big stash.

 

seriously.

 

I once ate at this tiny little Italian restaurant in Florida. They had a sign that basically said "If you want it your way, go to Burger King. This is my restaurant, I make the rules". One of the best meals I've eaten, but it took an hour for our food to hit the table from when we walked in. to some people, that would be worth a 1 star yelp review.

 

those people can **** off. there's a sign right there telling you what to expect. same with massdrop.

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Right now Amazon has the black 2000 medium nib for $113 shipped with prime. I will take my 2 day shipping for the extra $8 over MD.

 

Even if one does not have prime, the free super saver shipping still seems like it might be faster.

Edited by blINK

Chris

 

Carpe Stylum!

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They just sent out an update : they are including a bottle of Lamy Black as an apology for the delay (which wasn't MD's fault to begin with)

 

-k

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