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View Full Version : POLL: Am I a reasonable man?



pdxuke
03-10-2011, 06:46 PM
Ok, short lived happiness:

the Kamaka concert has a finish flaw.

It looks like dust on the heel between coats.

It is subtle, but there. And I know it is there.

I paid FULL RETAIL + for an "upgraded" case. Not a second.

Whataya think?

Am I reasonable if I return? Please vote.

UPDATE: If you're just reading this post, the issue is heading towards a happy ending with this replacement concert:

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=21446&d=1299897451

brucemoffatt
03-10-2011, 08:01 PM
You're not unreasonable at all. This is not a $50 beater you're holding. You've paid for an expensive higher-end musical instrument and you have every right to expect you'll get an instrument without flaws. Unless you fell in love with the instrument at first sight, flaws and all, and are prepared to wear the depreciated value if/when you were to sell it on, you should negotiate a satisfactory outcome. You deserve it, and to my mind so do the retailer and manufacturer - they deserve that you will keep them honest and preserve their reputations.

That's my opinion, and it's all mine.

Hippie Dribble
03-10-2011, 08:03 PM
I'm a little divided on what my response would be. Got pics of the blemish Thom?

pdxuke
03-10-2011, 08:21 PM
I'm a little divided on what my response would be. Got pics of the blemish Thom?

No, my camera doesn't have a good enough close up lens. You have to be up close on it. Let me put it this way, I most likely would have chosen another instrument in a shop if this were side by side, depending of course on how it played. This plays beautifully.

To add to it, the tsunami warning in Hawaii makes all of this seem rather ridiculous anyway.

Hippie Dribble
03-10-2011, 09:26 PM
No, my camera doesn't have a good enough close up lens. You have to be up close on it. Let me put it this way, I most likely would have chosen another instrument in a shop if this were side by side, depending of course on how it played. This plays beautifully.

To add to it, the tsunami warning in Hawaii makes all of this seem rather ridiculous anyway.

yeah, I've just been over watching the live stuff on TV. Unbelievable. What is happening to our world...

For anyone that way inclined, the Book of Matthew sure makes interesting reading at the moment, especially Chapter 24, 25...

Plainsong
03-11-2011, 12:23 AM
I don't think the posters and lurkers at UU make up half the players on the planet by a long long long long way. That said, have you tried the macro setting on your camera? It's the one that looks like a flower usually. I'd return it. Just because you're returning something doesn't make you a jerk. I mean calling them up and shouting abuse would be one thing, but calmly explaining a blemish and being pleasant to deal with is another. Kamaka should be able to deal with that alright. :)

HornedOne
03-11-2011, 12:33 AM
if its such a small flaw you can't even photograph and you love the way it sound who cares about that little spec. just chill strum and enjoy yer uke. because perfection is fiction and demanding perfection is just crazy XD

dkcrown
03-11-2011, 02:03 AM
Return it. I returned a Kiwaya once because of what I considered substandard quality and recieved a spectacular one to replace it.

Skitzic
03-11-2011, 02:38 AM
I would ignore it, especially if you like the sound and the flaw is too small to photograph. Say you send this one back and they give you a different one with a perfect finish...but you don't like the sound as much?

Sound would be more important to me then a tiny finish flaw.

Plainsong
03-11-2011, 03:50 AM
But to play devil's advocate to those saying that it's easier to keep it, this is an issue and I've never had dust under the finish of a uke cheap or expensive, and getting returns is feedback for Kamaka. It tells them something they need to know. How can a company improve if no one gives them feedback or they never see problems returning?

I didn't realize PDXUke got it from Gryphon, that being the case, and given they were supposed to give it a once-over, I'm sure they'll be reasonable to deal with.

Ukulele JJ
03-11-2011, 04:01 AM
If it sounds great, I'd keep it. Who cares what it looks like, especially in a spot that no one sees?

But that's just me. Nothing wrong with sending it back if you want to.

JJ

hopkid
03-11-2011, 04:02 AM
I would also vote to bring it up with Kamaka. As a manufacturer and retailer of high-end instruments, I'm pretty certain they will want to ensure customer satisfaction and above all that their products that are out there meet their quality standards. I'm certain that they wouldn't want any substandard product to leave their shop. I'm not sure how this might have happened but no QA is perfect.

That said, Skitzic brings up a good point about sound although I can't imagine that a Kamaka would not sound as awesome as we'd expect.

haolejohn
03-11-2011, 04:02 AM
I don't think the posters and lurkers at UU make up half the players on the planet by a long long long long way. That said, have you tried the macro setting on your camera? It's the one that looks like a flower usually. I'd return it. Just because you're returning something doesn't make you a jerk. I mean calling them up and shouting abuse would be one thing, but calmly explaining a blemish and being pleasant to deal with is another. Kamaka should be able to deal with that alright. :)

Great advise. But are you ever going to get a perfect mass produced ukulele?
This is one of the downfalls of ordering online. I take what I can get if it sounds great does a blemish that will be against your body really matter?

BTW Thom, I think you are handling this very mature and professional. Thanks for giving me hope in the American consumer once again.

strumsilly
03-11-2011, 04:47 AM
FINISH FLAWS ARE VERY HARD TO PHOTOGRAPH, ESPECIALLY IN GLOSS FINISHES. I HAVE BEEN TRYING ALL MORNING. I too received an instrument from an online source and understand your disappointment. Mine came with a loose brace and has one glaring finish flaw, to me that is, that is impossible to photograph. To be fair , it is 'only' a $250 uke, and the brace could have popped loose in shipping. but still, it took the glow off the honeymoon.

70sSanO
03-11-2011, 04:48 AM
Is the Kamaka satin or gloss?

Is it a texture issue... something you can feel?

Is it a lower gloss issue because of the uneven surface?

I only ask because if it was caused by not correctly buffing out that spot, it is probably an easy fix and I am less inclined to think you should sent it back.

There are just too many good guitars that do not have perfect finishes and they are sold as new first quality.

Plus every instrument finish will eventually show some wear if it is used.

John

Lori
03-11-2011, 05:02 AM
I would say if you paid full retail, you deserve a perfect finish. If it is bugging you, it will always bother you, and this is supposed to be a great uke that makes you happy... not one that has a bad feeling about a flaw. They might offer a discount on it, and give a partial refund. How does it sound? If you absolutely love the sound, you might prefer it over another uke with a perfect finish. If it were me, I would maybe tolerate a small flaw on the heel... but not on the front. Go with your gut feeling.

–Lori

GX9901
03-11-2011, 05:03 AM
I think if the problem is something that bothers you, and something that Kamaka agrees is an issue, then by all means return it.

Without pictures, it sounds like something that would not bother me personally. I got a $2k William King custom a couple of years ago that arrived with a swirl about the size of a quarter on the finish on the lower bout soundboard. It was actually pretty easy to see, but I got over it in about 3 seconds and never mentioned it to William. To this day it has never bothered me in the least. But I've developed a pretty high tolerance for blemishes on my stuff over the years, not just ukuleles. I just figured that it's almost impossible to keep my stuff pristine anyway.

Doc_J
03-11-2011, 05:06 AM
I think it is hard to find a perfect uke, made of natural materials and finished by hand.
I have a Kamaka soprano that too has an extremely small dust bit between the coat of gloss, like yours, but on the front. I bought mine used and saw it when I got it. It was no big thing for me. I liked enough to not be bothered by it. In fact I hadn't even thought about it until this thread.

But if I had paid retail for a brand spanky new one, I'd call about it. BTW I find it works best to email photos of defects/damage.
Whatever you end up doing is the right decision.

guitharsis
03-11-2011, 05:17 AM
What Lori said.

Edit: Just saw the pics of your uke. It's just gorgeous and you posted that it sounded great too . . . . Dlifficult decision.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 07:12 AM
FINISH FLAWS ARE VERY HARD TO PHOTOGRAPH, ESPECIALLY IN GLOSS FINISHES. I HAVE BEEN TRYING ALL MORNING. I too received an instrument from an online source and understand your disappointment. Mine came with a loose brace and has one glaring finish flaw, to me that is, that is impossible to photograph. To be fair , it is 'only' a $250 uke, and the brace could have popped loose in shipping. but still, it took the glow off the honeymoon.

I'm trying to photograph it. It is subtle and the gloss finish combined with light and a cheap camera make it difficult. I'll try a macro setting.

OldePhart
03-11-2011, 07:13 AM
Without a picture it's impossible to say what is reasonable and what is not. Also, what is reasonable on a "production" (even hand made production) uke would not be reasonable on a premium "presentation grade" uke. In the KoAloha line, for example, they have their "standard" ukes and then their special order all koa (including neck) ukes. I wouldn't quibble over a very small flaw on the standard models but I'd return the special order in a heartbeat if it was less than perfect.

With that caveat, I'd say if it was the sort of thing that I noticed almost immediately on picking up the uke I would probably return it or maybe just ask for a partial refund if I really loved the sound and playability. On the other hand, if it wasn't a "presentation grade" instrument and I didn't notice the flaw until I started inspecting the instrument very closely I'd probably not worry about it.

John

janeray1940
03-11-2011, 07:17 AM
If you're still thinking of calling Kamaka - you should go ahead and do it. I just heard that Oahu was issued an all-clear for the tsunami, so they should be back to business as usual soon.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 07:19 AM
Is the Kamaka satin or gloss?

Is it a texture issue... something you can feel?

Is it a lower gloss issue because of the uneven surface?

I only ask because if it was caused by not correctly buffing out that spot, it is probably an easy fix and I am less inclined to think you should sent it back.

There are just too many good guitars that do not have perfect finishes and they are sold as new first quality.

Plus every instrument finish will eventually show some wear if it is used.

John

I need to hear this for perspective. Although, if in the shop I would have passed on this because of this issue, because there are a lot of Kamaka concerts I can choose from. But now that it's here, it is harder to send back. I'm sure you understand that.

it is NOT a surface issue. I can't feel it, but I can see it.

What I am experiencing is disappointment that the instrument does not begin its life with me in perfect condition. I know I will ding it someday, but that will be my ding, and it will have my story.

I am also feeling frustration that I went ahead and paid more from thsi shop, partially because I was told about the high quality of the luthier who would inspect my instrument. I feel like that promise wasn't kept to me, because I do not see how this can not be considered a flaw, and if I saw it in a minute, why didn't the shop see it and comment on it?

But finally, I worry that my expectations are too high, and that I'm the one with the problem, which is why I so value the opinions of all of you here. I'm getting a cross section of points of view, and it helps me. Thank you.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 07:25 AM
I would ignore it, especially if you like the sound and the flaw is too small to photograph. Say you send this one back and they give you a different one with a perfect finish...but you don't like the sound as much?

Sound would be more important to me then a tiny finish flaw.

Just to be clear, the flaw is not too small to photograph. It can be seen clearly by the naked eye. I showed it to my wife, who knows nothing about ukes, and she could clearly see it and thought my assessment (dust?) was probably right.

What I'm saying is I am having difficulty photographing it. Cheap camera, gloss + light, etc. I'll try macro and see what I get.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 07:27 AM
I think it is hard to find a perfect uke, made of natural materials and finished by hand.



You may be right, and I thank you for that observation. The only problem for me is, I own a PERFECT Kamaka--the pineapple I bought last time!

DAPuke
03-11-2011, 07:30 AM
If it were inspected properly, it likely, would not have been sent to you. It would have been classified as a "second" and sold at a small discount in house. No matter what your decision, they would probably want to know about the flaw.
my .02
Don

cletus
03-11-2011, 07:54 AM
I am also feeling frustration that I went ahead and paid more from thsi shop, partially because I was told about the high quality of the luthier who would inspect my instrument. I feel like that promise wasn't kept to me, because I do not see how this can not be considered a flaw, and if I saw it in a minute, why didn't the shop see it and comment on it

If that's the case, then you should definitely express your feelings to the owner of the shop that sold you the uke.
Whether they choose to compensate you or not is another story, but at least you need to let them know about it. I don't see how contacting Kamaka is relevant if the factory didn't sell you the uke directly.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 07:57 AM
If that's the case, then you should definitely express your feelings to the owner of the shop that sold you the uke.
Whether they choose to compensate you or not is another story, but at least you need to let them know about it. I don't see how contacting Kamaka is relevant if the factory didn't sell you the uke directly.

It is relevant because it came out of their factory, at least, I think it should be relevant. And I will keep the instrument if they would be willing to assure me that I could bring it to the factory next time I visit the Island, and make it right. I assume they would get it back from the vendor anyway.

Or maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the vendor would just relist and resell it.

Skitzic
03-11-2011, 08:03 AM
Just to be clear, the flaw is not too small to photograph. It can be seen clearly by the naked eye. I showed it to my wife, who knows nothing about ukes, and she could clearly see it and thought my assessment (dust?) was probably right.

What I'm saying is I am having difficulty photographing it. Cheap camera, gloss + light, etc. I'll try macro and see what I get.

If you're this torn about it, call. It won't hurt to call and talk to the store.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 08:19 AM
If you're this torn about it, call. It won't hurt to call and talk to the store.

Thank you. I'm already communicating with the store and we are all putting our heads together.

Skitzic
03-11-2011, 08:33 AM
Thank you. I'm already communicating with the store and we are all putting our heads together.

Let us know how it turns out.

molokinirum
03-11-2011, 08:34 AM
Paying that amount of money and it being a Kamaka.....I would call them and explain the problem and see what can be done about it.

SweetWaterBlue
03-11-2011, 09:32 AM
I deleted my original post in this thread, because I rambled on too much about irrelevant nonsense, but I really think that if it is bothering you this much, you ought to return it. You paid extra money for it with very high expectations. Those expectations were not met, and that is why most high-end stores have a return policy - they want you to be happy.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 09:45 AM
21417

Here's a picture using a macro setting. What do you think?

Gmoney
03-11-2011, 09:50 AM
21417

Here's a picture using a macro setting. What do you think?

WOW - "fairy dust"??? That looks worse than I could imagine from your original description. I'd guess that Gryphon will have to take that one back for sure.

GX9901
03-11-2011, 10:08 AM
21417

Here's a picture using a macro setting. What do you think?

That's far worse than what the original post made it sound like to me. You referred to the "heel", which is the little area behind the neck-joint. That made me think probably a couple of spots there and not much of an issue if it was my ukulele. The picture shows a lot of spots near the tail-block area, and I'd probably return it if it was mine.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 10:10 AM
That's far worse than what the original post made it sound like to me. You referred to the "heel", which is the little area behind the neck-joint. That made me think probably a couple of spots there and not much of an issue if it was my ukulele. The picture shows a lot of spots near the tail-block area, and I'd probably return it if it was mine.

Thanks for the terminology correction. I need to learn my uke anatomy.

This is an incredible drag....:-(

strumsilly
03-11-2011, 10:11 AM
Hard to believe nobody noticed that before you got it. Send it back, it will always bug you.

janeray1940
03-11-2011, 10:12 AM
I'm still of the "keep in and get it refinished in Hawaii" opinion, but that is worse than I had imagined. I'm really surprised that got past the factory QA process at all.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 10:16 AM
I'm still of the "keep in and get it refinished in Hawaii" opinion, but that is worse than I had imagined. I'm really surprised that got past the factory QA process at all.

Frankly, so am I. And I'm also surprised it got through the retail shop. They must have take a bizillion photos of it.

Still, I'm kinda with my buddy janeray on this: if I can keep it and down the road turn it into an experience with Kamaka, what a cool thing that would be. It's a make lemonade view. Also, it would be so highly personal to have the factory second chance this and have a human interaction with them, me and this instrument. It fits my view of the Universe as being ordered and good! :-)

Then again, I don't want to be a chump either. If my fortunes changed and I ever had to sell it, it could not be done without a hit in price unless it was corrected.

joeybug
03-11-2011, 10:18 AM
I chose the "keep it and get it refinished in Hawaii" and also have little experience with the high end Ukes, but I'd say from what others are saying and the photo that you should return it or at least speak to the seller to see what can be done, it's going to bug you, and you paid full price and it may make you resent the instrument and not want to play it or something, so I think it would be best for your piece of mind to return in and get another one.

Hope that helps :D

brucemoffatt
03-11-2011, 10:36 AM
Having seen the photo now I'm still, or even more, convinced you owe it to yourself to resolve it with the vendor, and you definitely owe it to the vendor and manufacturer to have them resolve it. The manufacturer will want to see this put right now that we've all seen the flaw, the vendor will want to preserve their reputation as a value-add reseller, and most of all, you need to get a high end instrument in excellent condition for that amount of money and that brand name.

I don't buy the 'live with it, you might get another one that looks good but doesn't sound as good' argument. Not this brand, not this price point.

Don't let it get on top of you though. This reseller and this manufacturer are not back yard operations, they have great reputations for very good reasons. I'll be very surprised if you don't end up happy. Please keep us posted as to the outcome.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 10:42 AM
Having seen the photo now I'm still, or even more, convinced you owe it to yourself to resolve it with the vendor, and you definitely owe it to the vendor and manufacturer to have them resolve it. The manufacturer will want to see this put right now that we've all seen the flaw, the vendor will want to preserve their reputation as a value-add reseller, and most of all, you need to get a high end instrument in excellent condition for that amount of money and that brand name.

I don't buy the 'live with it, you might get another one that looks good but doesn't sound as good' argument. Not this brand, not this price point.

Don't let it get on top of you though. This reseller and this manufacturer are not back yard operations, they have great reputations for very good reasons. I'll be very surprised if you don't end up happy. Please keep us posted as to the outcome.

Thank you, Bruce. I see several possibilities for happy resolution. Now that the shop has the picture, they are looking at it within their shop. Everyone can now see what I'm talking about, and I feel less like some perfectionist jerk.
BTW, Kamaka also has the photo. I can't bring myself to call them today, with all that's going on in Hawaii. It just doesn't seem right. If they answer my email today, that will be enough.

I appreciate everyone weighing in. It helps.

SweetWaterBlue
03-11-2011, 10:51 AM
It definitely looks like somebody got some sawdust/dust/dirt on the finish before the last coat went on. I think that much would bother me too.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 10:57 AM
It definitely looks like somebody got some sawdust/dust/dirt on the finish before the last coat went on. I think that much would bother me too.

If they certified it as genuine Hawaii Beach Sand, it might raise the value! Haha! How cool would it be to have a Kamaka with native wood AND native beach!

OldePhart
03-11-2011, 10:59 AM
21417

Here's a picture using a macro setting. What do you think?

Yeah - definitely a return situation on a uke of almost any level above "factory second." I'd be unhappy with something that large and noticeable even on a factory uke at the upper end of the Chinese made stuff, let alone on a K-brand.

I'm really surprised that got out of the Kamaka factory but everybody has a bad day once in a while I guess.

John

haole
03-11-2011, 11:29 AM
That's a lot more noticeable than I thought it would be, judging from your original post. D: Between the dealer and Kamaka, I'm pretty sure they'll resolve the issue soon. A finish flaw like that is a good reason to return it and get another one, but that won't absolutely guarantee that the new one will sound/feel just as good as this one, so perhaps Kamaka could refinish it for you. Either way, a good dealer and a good brand will make it right.

olgoat52
03-11-2011, 11:35 AM
My experience has mostly been guitars over many decades and I have been rather dismayed by the quality control in production ukes like Kamaka and KoAloha. You think you would see these kinds of defects in a $800 to $1000+ guitar? Never. The fit and finish on a $800 guitar blows away any uke in the same price category that I have seen to date.

I sometimes think the builders share a bit of this "toy" mentality along with the general public. I am not talking about the custom builder and one off guys here.

Tack
03-11-2011, 11:43 AM
Get Kamaka to refinish it for you - not only do you know that it will sound as "amazing" as it does now, but you could legitimately claim to have a custom Kamaka! You are NOT being unreasonable, your approach is appropriate. I suspect the outcome will be good for you AND Kamaka - a win-win......

experimentjon
03-11-2011, 11:46 AM
21417

Here's a picture using a macro setting. What do you think?

Ah, I think I've had a uke like that before. I can't remember what brand it was....or which model. (I probably still own that uke since it didn't bother me that much.) But I definitely did not pay full retail for it.

That is definitely a manufacturing flaw. I'd look to get that fixed for free, or return it.

cletus
03-11-2011, 11:54 AM
Having seen the picture, I can't get my mind around the thought that Kamaka would even let that uke out the door, or that the "luthier' at the retailer even looked at it before the sale.
It makes me wonder what else is out there for sale? Wow, buyer beware!

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 11:57 AM
I want to update you.

Within 45 minutes of my sending the email, Kamaka emailed me and asked me to call. I did, and I spoke to the very kind rep. Normally, Kamaka would make me go through the retail store, but they made the offer to send it back--at my expense--and they would refinish it and return it--at their expense--within a week, depending on the weather.

My feeling is that I paid full retail for the instrument, and that I should pay no expense. Still, I appreciate Kamaka's willingness to bend their warranty requirements.

The sales rep at the retail shop (oh, all right--everybody knows it's Gryphon) contacted me offering to take it back--at their expense--for either a full refund, or a trade of another they have. I believe that will be my best option, providing I like the looks of the replacement instrument.

A third option, which I'm floating, and which I believe will be acceptable, is that Gryphon pays the freight to Hawaii.

So, we are moving towards a happier resolution.

Stand by.

France
03-11-2011, 12:00 PM
I think a lot of people may have changed their opinion after you posted the flaw photo. Definitely looks like a second to me. Pretty cheeky of the store to sell that to you without letting you know the condition IMO. I'd be wanting a partial refund or a return/replacement. You are not being unreasonable in wanting it sorted out. Good luck. I had issues with a custom uke and felt like a *rick sending it back but the makers were only too happy to make it right. It's their reputation on the line.

Gmoney
03-11-2011, 12:02 PM
SNIP

A third option, which I'm floating, and which I believe will be acceptable, is that Gryphon pays the freight to Hawaii.


I like Door # 3 - Gryphon pays the way to Kamaka so you end up gettting the uke you paid for originally & Kamaka & Gryphon come out looking like the upright companies we expect them to be.

janeray1940
03-11-2011, 12:04 PM
A third option, which I'm floating, and which I believe will be acceptable, is that Gryphon pays the freight to Hawaii.


Yes. This.

Unless, of course, Gryphon shows you a replacement uke that looks/sounds even better!

cletus
03-11-2011, 12:07 PM
I like Door # 3 - Gryphon pays the way to Kamaka so you end up gettting the uke you paid for originally & Kamaka & Gryphon come out looking like the upright companies we expect them to be.

Hell yeah!

sukie
03-11-2011, 12:14 PM
Can I change my vote? After looking at the photo, your options are good.

bonesigh
03-11-2011, 12:27 PM
It obviously bothered you enough to make this post so...return it ( :

mm stan
03-11-2011, 12:50 PM
Aloha thom,
Didn't you mention you like the sound of your uke...then option three sounds really good.. I believe Kamaka policy is on issues is if you have problems with your uke, if you bought it direct from them, they will honor
the warranty....however if it was sold to a retailer, it is their policy and responsibility because they got it at a wholesale price...I think Kamaka treated you better than most, maybe because it was factory flaw...and they gave you an real good offer....now the ball is in your court....it sounds nice, do you keep it or get another one and risk it may not sound as good as this one....let us know what you decide... at least that is the policy with setups....You can also try a side by side
comparison of the other kamaka ukulele at the store and decide then....

brucemoffatt
03-11-2011, 12:55 PM
I'll probably sleep on it. That's what I usually do with such matters of the Heart.

Great idea.

I hope you decide to send it back to Gryphon at their expense in exchange for another Kamaka. If it was me I'd give the manufacturer and supplier the chance to take that uke back. Another perfect Kamake uke from Gryphon at no extra cost to you would restore balance and harmony, and you'd not be left with any residual feelings or reminders of the 'pixie dust'. It would be a great pity to decide not to own a perfect Kamaka because of this. You deserve to own, play and appreciate a uke that good. Just my opinion, worth 2 cents, yours for free :)

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 12:57 PM
Great idea.

I hope you decide to send it back to Gryphon at their expense in exchange for another Kamaka. If it was me I'd give the manufacturer and supplier the chance to take that uke back. Another perfect Kamake uke from Gryphon at no extra cost to you would restore balance and harmony, and you'd not be left with any residual feelings or reminders of the 'pixie dust'. It would be a great pity to decide not to own a perfect Kamaka because of this. You deserve to own, play and appreciate a uke that good. Just my opinion, worth 2 cents, yours for free :)

Thank you Bruce. That helps a great deal. I'll take the pixie dust.

Thom

didgeridoo2
03-11-2011, 01:00 PM
Hey Thom. I voted for you to keep it if they knock a few bucks off. I figure if you like sound, and it can be fixed, keep it. But, now I read the update and I'd try to work out option three. If you receive a new, aesthetically perfect uke and it doesn't please your ears as much, it will bug you forever.

hmgberg
03-11-2011, 01:26 PM
I think both companies stepping forward makes this a better situation, although I must say I'm a bit taken aback at the suggestion that I pay the freight back to Kamaka for their flaw. I feel a little acid reflux at that one. It is a bit less than I expected, considering the flaw. I'm just being honest about that. Again, though, they did offer to repair it, and were very quick to contact me and to offer their help.

Gryphon is doing the right thing.

The problem with door #3 for me, is that I have to wait several weeks to get it back, even though I like the instrument.

I feel a little sour right now even on the idea of owning another Kamaka. Maybe the Uke Gods are saying, "it's not the right time." Buying an instrument like this involves a bit of magic, and the magic is tarnished right now. I'm sure many of you know what I mean.

I'll probably sleep on it. That's what I usually do with such matters of the Heart.

Another way of looking at this is that sometimes you have to stand up for yourself, for what is right, and make the magic happen in spite of obstacles that may arise, regardless of what anyone else would do. You have not been obnoxious with anyone. You are simply trying to get what you want and already paid for in full.

You love the sound of the concert. You had a perfect experience with your pineapple and love the sound of that ukulele. Gryphon has another concert and they are willing to swap theirs for yours at no expense to you? That's the deal I would take, provided that you can return the second concert if it is not up to your standards (even if this would be at your expense; then, you might consider that it's not the right time for magic).

Frankly, I'm a bit surprised that Kamaka wants you to pay freight one way. They pride themselves in the fact that a member of the Kamaka family inspects every ukulele before it leaves the shop. This one slipped by them. I'm especially surprised that, if they know you bought 2 Kamakas within as many weeks, more or less, they wouldn't at least reimburse you for the transport.

But really Thom, all of that aside, the Kamaka concert is one of my favorite instruments - and I have some really good ukuleles. It seems that everyone on UU who has one loves theirs. This reinforces the notion that the problem with the one you got is an aberration, an exception to the rule, and should you get another one from Gryphon you will be a happy man. As a UU comrade, I would rather you be a happy man than believe you stressing over whether you are "reasonable" man.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 01:33 PM
Another way of looking at this is that sometimes you have to stand up for yourself, for what is right, and make the magic happen in spite of obstacles that may arise, regardless of what anyone else would do. You have not been obnoxious with anyone. You are simply trying to get what you want and already paid for in full.

You love the sound of the concert. You had a perfect experience with your pineapple and love the sound of that ukulele. Gryphon has another concert and they are willing to swap theirs for yours at no expense to you? That's the deal I would take, provided that you can return the second concert if it is not up to your standards (even if this would be at your expense; then, you might consider that it's not the right time for magic).

Frankly, I'm a bit surprised that Kamaka wants you to pay freight one way. They pride themselves in the fact that a member of the Kamaka family inspects every ukulele before it leaves the shop. This one slipped by them. I'm especially surprised that, if they know you bought 2 Kamakas within as many weeks, more or less, they wouldn't at least reimburse you for the transport.

But really Thom, all of that aside, the Kamaka concert is one of my favorite instruments - and I have some really good ukuleles. It seems that everyone on UU who has one loves theirs. This reinforces the notion that the problem with the one you got is an aberration, an exception to the rule, and should you get another one from Gryphon you will be a happy man. As a UU comrade, I would rather you be a happy man than believe you stressing over whether you are "reasonable" man.

I agree with everything in your post, and especially thank you for posting it.

sonicbaker
03-11-2011, 02:41 PM
Just reading through the thread and have also purchased a Kamaka tenor this past month direct from the factory. I don't think I would have been very happy with the flaw in the finish either, judging from the photograph. It is certainly more than a couple of specks of dust. If you like the uke's playability, sound and looks, otherwise, I'd go with getting Kamaka to refinish it (at their freight expense or Gryphons). I'm sure they will make sure they do a great job on it this time. Depends on how you feel about the uke. Sometimes with a guitar (or uke), it just kind of speaks to you and you develop a relationship.

pdxuke
03-11-2011, 03:35 PM
The poll was overwhelming: send the first one back. I've listened to the voice of the UU people! :-)

Gryphon has offered me a replacement:

214432144421445

http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=21446&d=1299897451

They will pay all freight back to them. I didn't think it was possible to find a prettier uke than the first one, but I think this one is!

I've heard a sound clip and it's everything I'd hope it to be.

There are a few details to be worked out, but I think it's all going to be fine. There are few sure bets in life, but one is that after my first experience they will not let this instrument out of the shop unless it's flawless! :-)

Thank you all for your counsel.

Tack
03-11-2011, 03:37 PM
If the new one plays as good as it looks! you will be ....jus' fine........:D

janeray1940
03-11-2011, 03:55 PM
Wow! The second one really is prettier than the first! Okay, so this might turn out really well after all :)

hopkid
03-11-2011, 04:15 PM
Wow, not bad for a replacement Kamaka. Looks like you're on your way to a good resolution. I know how this must have been eating at you for the past day or so and I know it wasn't fun.

UkuLeLesReggAe
03-11-2011, 04:21 PM
listen to me, and getting a damaged ukulele...

not only for the next 2months will your life be a struggle to fix this in, but return it. I work in custoemr service, and now studying to be a doctor.

how i see it: as a part time job, i work for telstra (telcom), would I sell someone a phone with a scratched screen? no. if i did, would I expect them to come back and throw it in my face? Yes, I would.... I believe deeply that you get what you pay for, you are to receive the expectation you have within the company, such as making it your decision to go with that company to begin with, and should receive what you have paid big money for.

Another example, I bought my macbook. it had a chip in it (smaller than a grain of sand, possibly half the size) I took it back, apple gave me a brand new one. I don't believe in getting anything less than what they advertise their products as.

and mentioning about studying to become a doctor, people expect me and will rely on me to help them out. I see it my duty to provide everything perfect in everyway. No faults...

I dealt with a faulty uke... good luck buddy...

I wouldn't ignore it, I'm sure everybody who says so, wouldn't if it happened to them. TAKE IT BACK

*edit*
not sure if it all makes sense, good punctuation, spelling, anything! i'm tired

sonicbaker
03-11-2011, 05:40 PM
The poll was overwhelming: send the first one back.

Excellent solution and an excellent new uke!

seoulsister
03-11-2011, 06:03 PM
Are you satisfied with the finish? Would it irritate you if you didn't return it? You paid full price and it seems to me that your expectations should be met. Can you live with it as it is? If they reduced the price it might ease the expectations a bit. Seems to me that it is bothersome... and it would be with me as well.

I'd return it imho. You've probably been saving for quite a while and I so understand the dissapointment.

Teek
03-12-2011, 10:56 AM
At full retail for a higher end uke like this, after seeing the pic I certainly would either have sent it back or asked for a significant price reduction. When you said "heel" I thought not a really big deal and voted for a price discount. If you had said "butt" I would have said add a new category: send it back, they pay ALL shipping AND give you a discount to boot!

Hope the new one is "The One".

pdxuke
03-12-2011, 02:55 PM
I've started a new thread because I'm on my way to a happy ending, and i wanted a clean slate! See
http://www.ukuleleunderground.com/forum/showthread.php?43748-It-s-Official