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A good shop

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
It seems that the only time we hear about shops is when they screw us over, so I'm going to report the opposite.

A few weeks ago I found a great deal online for some HEAD iM88s, I couldn't buy them fast enough for fear that inventory was low...sure enough I got their last pair. The shop that I made the purchase from is called The Startingate, located in VT, a family owned business that I have driven by many times but never actually stepped in. A few days later my skis arrived at my door, immediately I noticed something that caused me concern; the box on one end was torn. Fearing the worse I hastily opened up the box and sure enough the skis had been dropped hard, so hard that the metal tip was bent and there was some delamination. Also due to the rough handling the bases were less than new looking....not good and I thought, "oh no, here we go....."

I called up Startingate and told them my dilemma, they told me no problem that they will call Fedex and HEAD and see what can be done. After a few days, the folks at Startingate told me that Fedex will be over to pick up the skis and that they will pay for return shipping. They also told me that HEAD had no more 07-08 iM88's so they would instead send me 08-09 skis for the same price that I was paying for the closeouts! That friends is a stand-up company. Today my skis arrived, fresh new 08-09's undamaged and I am a very happy customer. I encourage you all to do business with these good people.

www.startingate.net
post #2 of 14
When given the chance, most shops will do the right thing. Good job.
post #3 of 14
They're good.
post #4 of 14
Owner Gary Longley is ex-flying-cannuck -

Great shop for high end & racing gear - Gary and Alan are among VT's best boot fitters -
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Spoke to both of them, good people.
post #6 of 14
That's awesome, but I am definitely jealous!!!! Great customer service goes a long way. I'm sure you'll be a loyal customer from here on out.
post #7 of 14
Wow, a great story. Bump for a shop and other companies that did so well for you.
post #8 of 14
As a former ski shop manager at an area shop at Sugarbush, I always go out of my way to seek out high levels of customer service and true lovers of skiing.
The big box stores may offer better prices, but lack the personal touch and dedication of more specialized shops.
If you are in the Ludlow/Okemo area this Fall you will find just such a shop: The Boot Pro. Shon Racicot is the proprietor. Shon is one of the great bootfitters in the industry and has a passion for all things skiing.
Select equipment, high levels of customer service and solid advice.
Ski on!
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by twoturn View Post
If you are in the Ludlow/Okemo area this Fall you will find just such a shop: The Boot Pro. Shon Racicot is the proprietor. Shon is one of the great bootfitters in the industry and has a passion for all things skiing.
Is that new? He's not at Northern Ski Works anymore?
post #10 of 14
Shon has taken the show on the road.
post #11 of 14
As I checked this string today, I noticed it has received 314 hits already. Shop owners and personnel should take note.
post #12 of 14
Good info RR. I'll remember that when we head up to Stratton this season.
post #13 of 14

The service manager at the Startingate is a guy named Sean. He could be the best tuner in Vermont. Well at least in the same league as Graham @ Edgewise............. Always a good, clean tune. His race tunes are fast and to die for......

post #14 of 14

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post

 

It seems that the only time we hear about shops is when they screw us over, so I'm going to report the opposite.

A few weeks ago I found a great deal online for some HEAD iM88s, I couldn't buy them fast enough for fear that inventory was low...sure enough I got their last pair. The shop that I made the purchase from is called The Startingate, located in VT, a family owned business that I have driven by many times but never actually stepped in. A few days later my skis arrived at my door, immediately I noticed something that caused me concern; the box on one end was torn. Fearing the worse I hastily opened up the box and sure enough the skis had been dropped hard, so hard that the metal tip was bent and there was some delamination. Also due to the rough handling the bases were less than new looking....not good and I thought, "oh no, here we go....."

I called up Startingate and told them my dilemma, they told me no problem that they will call Fedex and HEAD and see what can be done. After a few days, the folks at Startingate told me that Fedex will be over to pick up the skis and that they will pay for return shipping. They also told me that HEAD had no more 07-08 iM88's so they would instead send me 08-09 skis for the same price that I was paying for the closeouts! That friends is a stand-up company. Today my skis arrived, fresh new 08-09's undamaged and I am a very happy customer. I encourage you all to do business with these good people.

www.startingate.net

 

Interesting that I missed this thread originally -- must have been in summer hibernation.

 

Similar thing happened to me when ordering some Heads from the Startingate, last of that model in the size I wanted in stock.  The skis showed up in a really lousy box that had clearly been used a bunch of times.  One ski had a delaminated tip -- I have no idea if it was shipping damage or a defect (did not look to be shipping damage, but who could tell -- the box was old to begin with).  Both skis were not in plastic, and had rust on the edges, which was a little odd, but would not have been an issue.

 

They initially tried to get warranty replacements from Head, and that seemed to be the best option, but Head was sold out.  Meanwhile, I sent the skis back.  A couple weeks later, I got an e-mail from them that the skis were repaired and on their way back to me.  Not what I would have done in that case, but I decided to give it a chance since I wanted the skis.  Well, when I unpacked them, the delamination was still there and no different than before.  I have no idea what they thought they fixed.  I finally had to ask for a refund since I wasted about 3 weeks on this, missed taking the skis on a western trip, and the charge was on my credit card bill that was due.

 

Turns out there was some mixup at the shop, and they had indeed arranged a warranty replacement with Head.  I think they meant to do the right thing, but it took too long and got messed up due to internal mis-communication.  I do think they are good people, but something definitely went wrong in that case.

 

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