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Has anyone looked on Ebay lately!!!! - Page 2

post #31 of 59
Scalce - missed your other post.

Which shop was that that got 3 strikes from you? I assume it's a shop I know about in the area. Just curious. Thanks.
post #32 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by Scalce:
I have no more issues with getting what I want online since I am more knowledgable now and do not need expert opnions anymore. That's what you guys are for. [img]smile.gif[/img]

Seriously though, unless you receive help, information, or very good customer service, what is the point of paying overinflated retail prices?
I'm with Scalce here. I think I put a lot more time researching what my needs are than any salesman. I search through several threads on this board to research different skis before I make purchase. I feel the advice given on this board is more valuable than any advice given in the store because those on the board ski this equipment on a regular basis. There are also several other research tools available for free online. By the time I'm ready to purchase, the ski is just a commodity and I'll try to find the lowest price whether that be eBay or a retailer.

Last year I was convinced I wanted a pair of Atomic R9 skis. I walked through Sport Chalet in early April last year and noticed they had the previous year's Beta Ride 9.22's (from all I could tell the 2002 9.22 and 2003 R9 are the same except for slight graphics changes) marked down to $139. I bought four pairs and sold three on eBay at a profit to pay for the other pair plus a new pair of boots.

I do agree that boots are an altogether different animal. When I tried on boots at Sport Chalet, I must have tried on at least a half dozen pairs before I settled on my purchase. I'd have felt really guilty if I'd used up all the salesman's time only to go buy them on eBay.
post #33 of 59
Ullr, I think a lot of Atomics are being dumped on the market right now because Atomic is making major changes to their line next year. They are coming out with a new binding and plate that are not compatible with the current ones, and no one will want this year's stuff next year, hence, the glut of Atomics on eBay right now.
post #34 of 59
The local shops here in Seattle are okay. As far as boot fitting goes, I've had mediocre expierences. I went back to a shop several times. Twice had the same guy who I thought was somewhat competent. The third time back got a different boot fitter who said the advice and fitting service I had was bad and who had done the boot fitting. As the guy who had done my boot fitting walked by, I pointed him out. Same shop but two different points of view. I paid a lot of money for custom footbeds and a fitting but the service was less than stellar. Not to mention the pain on the slopes of skiing on boots that were not fit properly. So if I see a great deal on a pair of boots, I see no problem buying them on-line but you have to take into account the price of aftermarket boot fitting when purchasing on-line. You can easily spend $100-$150 for fitting services. So you need to put that into the equation along with the S&H charges. Even at 50% off MSRP it's not much of a deal on-line when you consider that most local shops typically markdown 50% off at seasons end.

I think small local ski shops are going to have to morph into more service oriented businesses to retain their customer base. I still give my ski shop lots of business for clothes and ski tunes. A full tune with edge and base beveling goes for $40. They may spend 15 minutes to do both skis. That's $160/hour! I don't feel sorry for these shops at all. They just need to adjust to the changing business climate. Besides, a lot of sporting goods stores have on-line websites. REI, Sportsmart, Sports Authority. Sports Chalet etc have web sites.
post #35 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by Dark Horse:
Ullr, I think a lot of Atomics are being dumped on the market right now because Atomic is making major changes to their line next year. They are coming out with a new binding and plate that are not compatible with the current ones, and no one will want this year's stuff next year, hence, the glut of Atomics on eBay right now.
While at Whistler this past weekend, I overheard a guy on the slopes who has a friend that is an Atomic Ski rep there mention that Atomic was having major problems with Atomic bindings and that they are having problems selling to local ski shops because of this. Apparently a lot of the Atomic demo skis/binding have been breaking.
post #36 of 59
DH,

I'm sure that is a good part of the reason. I think my friend was most upset because Atomic is dumping at a price less than what he paid. Therefore, he is stuck with a good quantity of this years ski's that he can't mark down lower than the e-bay price. I know that this is just a fact of life and Atomic has to make money too, but it is killing the smaller shops. These small shops are where a lot of really good people work, and where we as consumers can get really good service. Their only recourse is to stop carrying Atomics.
post #37 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by Ullr:
OK my .02. Just got back from my local shop last night. My wife bought a pair of Nordica 12W's. Paid $199 end of the year sale price. The owner and I got to talking while he was fitting her. He was very upset about the amount of new equipment on e-bay and where is it coming from. Particularly the Atomics. My wife was looking at a pair of C9's and he stated that the price he had to pay for them this year was more than what he is seeing them on e-bay for!! Went on to state he wont stock Atomic's next year for this reason. He can't make a profit. I thought about it on the ride home. He is right. I can go on e-bay and with S&H save about 30 - 40 dollars over his low sale price, but what am I getting? Is the 30 - 40 dollars worth the price of driving the guy out of business? I get alot of knowledge from him and his staff as well their time. He spent about an hour and a half talking to my wife and fitting her with the right pair of boots. The service is more valuable to me than saving a buck. I know I may be lucky to have a local shop that I can trust, but when it's time for her to buy I will go back.
Perhaps Atomic should extend to this store owner the same prices that they give to the e-bay seller?

I'm certain that manufacturers will give a shop a price break if they buy enough skis at once. However, small shops only buy a couple dozen at most. Online sellers buy enough to get the huge price break.

It's the manufacturers fault for inflating their prices to retail shops.
post #38 of 59
I think my friend would agree with you 100% BigE.
post #39 of 59
most suppliers have an internet policy as part of their dealer agreement. that being said in north america there is a bunch of crossborder stuff that really drives people nuts as usually canadian retail is less, plus the exchange rate make the great white north very affordable.
support your local ski shop unless they are dicks, but realise also that every person that walks in is asking for a deal. i get my truck serviced alot because i drive alot and have yet to get a deal. think ski service is to much? learn to tune maybe you will see they aren't ripping you off. the machinery to do skis right is hugely expensive, and a good hand tune is near impossible to find so if the tunes are right for you pay up. imagine asking a lawyer or doctor or teacher for discount because "we're good customers"give me a break
post #40 of 59
So, I have a question. What is the difference of people buying new from eBay and say all of us dumping our used but meticulously maintained quivers on pages like this every season? Many of us find the way to score the gear at a discount (Shop Form/Pro Form), ski it for a season and then hope to recoup our initial investment to get another pair of whatever. Doesn't the EpicSki provide us the same oppurtunity eBay does to shops? Aren't we potentially hurting the sale of goods from the local ski shop we all profess to support? Just a little food for thought from a guy who spent over 15 years working for his old man at the family ski shop. The shop is gone now, BTW.
post #41 of 59
I haven't seen too much brand new 2004, still in the wrapper gear on our fourm.
post #42 of 59
Scalce-

Just curious which Ken Jones (Nashua or Manchester) charged you so much to mount the bindings. I've bought several pairs of skis from the Manchester store in the past few years and I was never charged a mounting fee. Also, I recently picked up a pair of K2's cheap at another shop (Ken Jones didn't have any) and went to Ken Jones for a binding. When they didn't have a binding that was suitable, they told me to look around and if I found bindings elsewhere, they would mount them for free. Hmmm, skis and bindings bought at different ski shops and mounted for free, sounds like a pretty good dealer.
As for tuning, I dropped off a pair of skis in Manchester last week for a full tune and when I picked them up, one of the salesman got them for me and said, "No charge, you've been a good customer."
As for the Nashua shop, I bought bindings from them cheap, and they mounted them on skis I bought elsewhere for free. So I am curious which store charged you such a high price for mounting.
FYI: despite the name, the Nashua and Manchester Ken Jones are not affiliated, but I have been happy with the service from both.
post #43 of 59
Buying boots on-line is the last piece of equiptment I would buy . If your one of the lucky few that can fit a boot right out of the box ok but the follow up in fitting is more important than the initial purchase , and this fitting is now going to cost you . As for going to your local shop and wasting thier time and taking advantage of the inventory and then expecting to get good service out of them later is a bit of a stretch .
post #44 of 59
boots online? yes i got boots on ebay - after the bootfitter at my local (expensive) shop spent over an hour trying boots on and giving invaluable advice. i was fully prepared to buy retail (at the end of the session markdowns, that is), but the bootfitter said there was only one pair of boots that would fit me, they were out of stock, i should look for them at another store or online.

so i scored the perfect boots real cheap on ebay. but i have been a loyal customer to this shop, returning there for countless tuneups, new boots, equipment at full retail for me and four other skiers in my family.

moral of the story i guess is you can have your cake and eat it too.
post #45 of 59
What I can't figure out is how the prices on ebay are so low. I mean, come on-Salomon Crossmax 10 w/9-12 binding (in the wrapper, current model) for $400? That is below shop employee price, and well below the price any shop would pay! Where are these skis coming from? How can any shop that paid $600 for that setup expect to compete, much less make money? How is it that K2 Axis X's end up at Costco for $250 a pair?

We have learned to focus on service (as others have noted in the thread) by offering every ski we sell, in nearly every size, available for demo. Demoing as many pair of skis as you wish is free, as long as you eventually make a ski purchase (we had a guy demo 8 pair over 4 days earlier in the year-we didn't charge him for the demos. Guess what-he came back to buy a bunch of tuning gear as well as skis for his wife, in addition to paying full retail). Our service is very good and the staff is excellent at getting the right people on the right skis.

There are plenty of bad shops, unfortunately, just as there are plenty of coffee shops interested in profit over pulling a great shot and growing the business by word-of-mouth and quality. Lots of those places will be out of business as quailty establishments like Stumptown (Portland) and Espresso Vivace/Hines Public Market/Lighthouse Roasters (Seattle) come to the forefront and people realize just what good espresso can be!

There is no reason to support bad ski shops with ill-trained staff/people who don't care-but there are lots of great shops in business as well. Any shop who goes out of their way to earn your business deserves to keep it, even if you are paying full retail. As was mentioned, where would you go for boot fitting (or at least to try on models so that they can be taken to your bootfitter)? How would you demo the new skis you were interested in checking out? Do you have a sander and stone grinder at home for tuning? Next time you need goggles, gloves and a helmet, are you going to order them online and "hope" that they fit or that the helmet and goggles are compatible?

Unfortunately, bike shops are having the same sort of troubles. Again, it is the focus on good customer service, bicycle fit, and good repair/service that will keep shops in business. You simply can't buy your first road bike online-it is like buying a pair of ski boots without really knowing what a ski boot should fit like. I think people realize this and would hope that they choose service over price-otherwise, they may save a buck in the short run, but be much unhappier with their bike in the long run than they would if they had gotten the correct fit and setup at the LBS.
post #46 of 59
The Ken Jones I went to was in Manchester.

I had just picked up the skis from Atomic in Amherst NH and wanted to get them mounted that afternoon.

Ken Jones already carries some 2005 Atomics so they were familiar with the Neox bindings. I still think that $40 is alittle ridiculous but I was under time constraints.

As for the $80 tunes, I looked at some receipts and they were like $70.

The reason that I liked the tunes from this place are that they take off the bindings before grinding, they have a ceramic edger, and I totally trust the tuner. The $70 or $80 also included a cross hatch pattern.

I love tuning my own skis but for Volkls which aren't always as good out of the wrapper as Atomics or Fischers, I wanted to get the edges set and then I would maintain them until the next basegrind.

I have to say that I have been really impressed with Ski Stop in Westwood for both fitting and customer service where my wife and I got our boots fitted but I have not purchased anything from them or got a tune from them.

I don't really want to badmouth the shop I used to go to as people can determine what level of customer service they expect. They have two store, one on Framingham and one in Danvers and they recently changed their name. You can PM me if you want to know what shop it was.
post #47 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by Ullr:
I haven't seen too much brand new 2004, still in the wrapper gear on our fourm.
Why are we only taking new gear into consideration? Doesn't selling gear used for a single season hurt Local Ski Shop sales as well? To me, it is all the same, and many of us are contributors.

Also, doesn't buying gear from Cupolo (even though they are an EpicSki approved shop) and others hurt the local guys as well?
post #48 of 59
$40 for a mount and release check is not unreasonable - especially if you either got the skis for free or at a 'deal' and the shop didn't sell you either the skis or bindings. Litigation and refusal to take personal responsibility has driven up their insurance costs - you're not necessarily paying for the turn of the screwdriver, but the insurance required to cover that guy turning the screw, the machine needed to release test the boot, and the overhead necessary to maintain a local shop that is losing biz to eBay, gray marketers and those who don't see a problem with buying at pro form and re-selling to make a buck. It's sad, but there it is.
post #49 of 59
Quote:
I love tuning my own skis but for Volkls which aren't always as good out of the wrapper as Atomics or Fischers, I wanted to get the edges set and then I would maintain them until the next basegrind.
But Black Diamond skis, which are made by Atomic, aren't nearly as reliable for off-the-shelf tune readiness. My '03 Havocs were base-high underfoot and railed on the tips & tails. They skied HORRIBLY when new, unless the snow was VERY soft.

Now, with a good base flattening and 1/2 bevels, they ride like they were meant to. Only $35 more than the price I paid...
post #50 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by Bandit Man:
]Why are we only taking new gear into consideration? Doesn't selling gear used for a single season hurt Local Ski Shop sales as well? To me, it is all the same, and many of us are contributors.

Also, doesn't buying gear from Cupolo (even though they are an EpicSki approved shop) and others hurt the local guys as well? [/QB]
I don't think the issue is selling or buying on the Internet (or ski swaps or anywhere else for that matter). Used, almost new or new - if you own it, you can sell it however you want for whatever price you want. Local shops have to deal with the reality of competition from each other and elsewhere. In my mind, the issue is using your local shop's money in the form of inventory, labor, etc. to subsidize your buying elsewhere. e.g. going in and using a bootfitter/salesperson's time for an hour fitting and trying on five or six pair of boots - and then buying your item of choice (that they had in stock ) elsewhere just to save $50 or $100, or whatever. IMO, that is not fair. It is real, hard money out of the shop's pocket.

I don't think anyone is advocating that we all burn our excess gear rather than selling or giving it away. Are they?
post #51 of 59
Scalce, with the price structure you quote, the local shop is actually saving you money on readjustment of Atomic-style system bindings if the skis change owners, or you change boots. The attitude, on the other hand is inexcusable. (I just ran into this in a shop local to me, the back of my hand to them!)

Gonzo, in the modern manufacturing age, is it at all reasonable to wonder how much of a factor average retail shelf life is on a factory tune? I mean, plasticisers still outgas, and a Havoc might sit on the shelf for longer than an SX:9. If a local shop throws in a factory tune check-up with purchase, that's a deal point for me.

My Internet ordering story so far:
3 correct/1delam/1base off.
post #52 of 59
except one thing, comprex... the Havoc is a new model this year, and I got mine EARLY in the season. I would understand if they were many months of shelving behind them. And, it's startling to see the finish quality difference between the Havoc and the similar Atomic skis on which the Havoc is based (R:EX and TM:EX, but slightly different dimensions, including +4mm at the Havoc's waist)
post #53 of 59
Wasn't looking to excuse them, Gonz. Your experience just adds to the Ebay "worry" list, which is how this thread started.

- Bad QC on new models and new production lines
- Long time on retail shelves without waxing
- Possible 2nd quality skis/warranty pulls (I am not suggesting any reputable dealers do this!)
post #54 of 59
Comprex-

I think that Scalce is speaking about two different shops here - maybe three. There is the original shop in MA where he was very dissatisfied with the service. And then there were the two shops in NH where he thought that he was overcharged for mounting the bindings. I am not clear on which shop he paid $70 for a ceramic tune, as I know that Ken Jones in Manchester does the ceramic race tune for $40. He may have been referring to the cost of tuning two pairs of skis.
So here's my two cents (maybe three):
I guess the choice of buying on-line versus buying from a local shop comes down to how much time you expect to spend at your shop. If you are buying skis every several years and getting one annual tune, it may be worth it to go the e-bay route. I buy at least one set of skis every year as well as accessories and tuning equipment, and I believe that for service, selection and price, it ends up being cheaper for me to buy from local shops. Earlier this year, when I was looking to purchase a pair of Fischer RX-9’s for a trip the next weekend, I was told by Fischer that they were not available. I spoke with the guys that I know at Ken Jones in Manchester, and they got me the skis. They didn’t just get me the skis, they got them in time for my trip at a 30% discount and they were willing to drive to the Fischer headquarters to pick them up to insure that I received them in time. I don't think that you could get that service on-line. Also, when it is time to trade in skis, they will sell my skis for me and provide me with a gift certificate for the full price of the sale. As for prices in local shops, a couple of days ago I decided to buy some Line skis that I had seen on-line for $200 plus shipping. I decided to see what my local shop (Ken Jones Nashua) had for bindings prior to ordering the skis and I told them that I was looking to purchase the skis elsewhere. Knowing this, they still offered me new Rossi Power 120 for $100 installed. I also noticed that they had one pair of the Line skis that I was planning to order on-line, but they were only marked down to $325. When I asked what their best price was, they offered me the skis and bindings for $375. Subtracting the shipping cost, it would cost me $50 more to buy from the local shop. The obvious benefits were that I could have the skis right away, I could see the skis before I bought them, and I would have the support of shop. I also remembered that about a month prior, this same shop had sold me a bunch of tuning equipment (rotary brushes, variable temp iron, rotary drill attachment, waxes, etc.) for 50% off retail (much less than on-line prices). That day alone, I had saved much more than $50. So I agreed to buy the skis from them. I also decided to buy 5 packages of LF wax for next season. They gave me a discount on the wax which amounted to an extra $65 savings. So it ended up being cheaper and easier to buy from the local shop.
post #55 of 59
Yeah the shops in Mass were the ones that I got tunes at and purchased stuff from.

Ken Jone in NH is where they charged me $40 for the mount.

Quickk9, it sounds like you like those shops and and you have been treated fairly.

What does the $40 race tune entail? Maybe I will drive up there to get tunes. I saw the workshop in the basement of the Manchester store.

Does it seem strange that a full race tune is the same price as a binding mount regardless of insurance costs?
post #56 of 59
Scalce-

I sent you a PM about the shop in MA that you were unhappy with and I can't say that I blame you.
As for the two Ken Jones in NH, I have always been very satisfied with the service from both. Everyone with whom I have dealt has been knowledgeable and honest. As for tuning, I am not clear on the differences between the standard tune ($30) and the race tune ($40) exept that the race tune uses the ceramic grind. Maybe race wax, also, but I don't know. It's probably best to call them and ask them about the details. When I was there last week, they were tuning while you waited.
As for the race tune versus binding mounting, I really can't comment. Maybe some of the people who work in the shops and are on this list can comment further.
On another note, while I have been very happy with both of these shops as well as many others that I have visited, I am not implying that all ski shops are well-run with a customer friendly well-informed staff. I have visited some shops and walked out shaking my head in disbelief as to how anyone would trust the employees to recommmend or set-up skis correctly. It is for this reason that it is always worth asking around or visiting the shops and forming your own opinion.
post #57 of 59
One important thing that is missing here, is the shop is your advocate when something goes wrong. Most shops will handle you warranty issues with the manufactuer. Or maybe do a repair for free. If you don't purchase it from the shop why should the help with repairs and such. I know there are several companies out there, that if you purchase you equipment on-line from CA. They will not warranty it and you will have to send it back to CA.
post #58 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by comprex:
Wasn't looking to excuse them, Gonz. Your experience just adds to the Ebay "worry" list, which is how this thread started.

- Bad QC on new models and new production lines
- Long time on retail shelves without waxing
- Possible 2nd quality skis/warranty pulls (I am not suggesting any reputable dealers do this!)
Just to clarify, I bought my AT gear from a local shop, a qualified Black Diamond dealer... not from eBay. So I don't know what eBay has to do with this particular issue/rabbit trail.
post #59 of 59
Quote:
Originally posted by repairguy:
One important thing that is missing here, is the shop is your advocate when something goes wrong. Most shops will handle you warranty issues with the manufactuer. Or maybe do a repair for free. If you don't purchase it from the shop why should the help with repairs and such. I know there are several companies out there, that if you purchase you equipment on-line from CA. They will not warranty it and you will have to send it back to CA.
Precisely why I bought my AT gear from a local outdoor gear shop.
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