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Printrbot Talk Forum • View topic - Printrbot refusing warranty service

Printrbot refusing warranty service

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Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2015-Dec-Wed-20-Dec

I have recently purchased Printrbot Play, Printrbot Simple Metal and Printrbot Plus. I have purchased Play Y axis Upgrade with heated bed for Printrbot Play, Simple Super Z upgrade for Simple Metal and Simple X axis upgrade with heated bed. I've contacted Printrbot, because I had problems with acme rod on Simple Metal, and they sent a replacement part. I have contacted Printrbot support several more times regarding a scratched power tower for Printrbot Plus, problem with Z axis on Printrbot Plus, and a replacement for a filament holder which has a bent leg. Printrbot said that they are seeing a pattern in my past service requests and said that they have a right to refuse service. I don't claim to be an expert, but this seems strange. Did anyone experience anything similar?
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Printrbot refusing warranty service

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2015-Dec-Thu-16-Dec

What is your past service history? Have you tried discussing it with them, go for the bad coincidence approach.

Every company dealing with warranty issues gets a few abusers (iirc it's somewhere around 2 or 3%), you may have triggered their "early warning" system. If they have been reasonable requests in the past politely let them know that you're not working the system to get free parts, and offer to return the defective ones.

You're only about 6 or 7 hours (in good weather :) from the land of the eternal moose.

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Mon-15-Jan

I have purchased a number of printers and a large number of parts in the past, and have submitted 10+ service requests. I have spent $$$$$ on buying Printrbot Plus, Simple Metal, Play and Maker to Play upgrade kit. I have also ordered a large number of parts: 3 printrboards, 2 metal hot ends, 3 10"10" kapton tape squares, 3 Printrbot Play Y axis upgrades, 1 geared extruder, Simple Super Z upgrade, Simple X axis upgrade with heated bed. I have logged 6 service requests. I have sent printrboard for Simple Metal back because it was damaged. I have received a replacement bed and X axis for Printrbot Plus.

Printrbot support Customer Service lead - Andre - denied to explain why my warranty is cancelled. Unfortunately shipping all items back costs $$$$$, and I already paid several hundred dollars to have them shipped to me.

I've been a loyal customer since November of 2013. Printrbot also said that they are not going to sell any more printers or parts to me.

I am at a loss. No explanation. I have submitted service requests before and they always helped me in the past. I have spent more than a month trying to get printers to work, so returning them basically means I wasted a lot of time.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Mon-16-Jan

Try politely asking Brook to look into it on Twitter, including a mention of how many PB products you own. Sounds like something rubbed somebody the wrong way, but perhaps a more public request will get a better response - or at least an explanation. Let us know what happens.

It seems like a lot of stuff goes out the door still needing work, and you have bought a lot of machines from them. IANAL, but if it's truly under warranty I don't believe they can just arbitrarily refuse.

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Fri-09-Jan

I have emailed Brook, and he said that he agrees with the decision made by his techs. I have submitted too many tickets. I have submitted 6 support tickets for a purchase of $3000. Some of the items were poorly packaged. I have been offered by Printrbot to ship all of the items back, but according to their rules merchandise can't be damaged. I still have 7 days to return the items.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby teicher » 2016-Jan-Fri-18-Jan

Another thread came up like this in the G+ 3D printing community, not sure if it's related or not.

https://plus.google.com/107071129514061 ... NBfRarKBT3
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Fri-10-Jan

I am in the same situation as Lisa G. I have posted on the same thread as Lisa posted. Brook is not taking care of the customers. I have taken my printer to Microcenter, a Printrbot reseller in MN and they got my printers printing great. Rail beraings had to be replaced on NEW Printrbot Plus. Printrbot Simple Metal needed belts tightened and a replacement belt for Y axis because it was too short and over tightened. Printrbot Play Z-axis was stuck at 90mm. The cables were too tight and the Z-axis couldn't go up. After all zip ties were cut, the Z axis goes up to 130mm as it's supposed to. Printrbot attitude has changed - they used to help you and provided good help. Now they just tell you to return merchandise if you are not happy.

I was told by Dave and Andre to buy 3D printers from a different company. Brook said that he agreed with their decision. Great customer service.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Fri-10-Jan

Scan the receipt/report, and attach it with a polite note, something like "Sorry you felt that way. Your dealer located and corrected several assembly and parts issues. My printer now operates correctly". Brook has this thing about attitude, and may be incorrectly interpreting what his customers say. I'm sure that some of his customers may have difficulty changing a light bulb, but many of us are way beyond that. There's enough QA problems reported here that indicate they still don't have this consistent manufacturing thing down. Growing pains? Too many toy tanks? Peter principal? Have to wait and see, I guess.

Wrt to Lisa G. Brook makes a case for his attitude, but there's no way to know what was really going on. Was she asking to have those upgrades installed because the parts she received were defective and she wanted to make sure it all worked before shipping, or was she asking for free undeserved goodies. We'll never know.

Doesn't sound like the way you were treated was their finest hour.

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Fri-10-Jan

When you buy a product, you expect the support to be there. I have purchased large number of parts and printers, and because of that I have a large number of issues. If I assemble Printrbot from a kit, I can make mistakes and it's my fault. If I buy assembled Printer to save time (7-10 hours need to assemble one and make sure it works), I expect to spend just 1 hour to get started. This is not my first Printer. I have no issues replacing defective parts as long as they are provided.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Fri-11-Jan

I have installed all of the upgrades I purchased myself and just asked to replace defective parts. A lot of people just make necessary repairs at their own expense even if their printer is under warranty.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Jan-Fri-16-Jan

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Jan-Sat-15-Jan

My post on Google+ attracted attention of Brook - he told me to move on to other companies if they provide better support. I have purchased a makerbot printer, and xyzprinting davinci duo 2.0, and both printers are working great right out of the box. I got my printrbot printers working and I learned that I should have bought my printers as a kit - Brook gets offended if you say that printers don't work well. Out of 3 printers I purchased - play, simle metal and plus, not a single one printed right out of the box. Each one required at least a couple of weeks of work to get good prints. Hopefully someone will learn from my mistakes - don't buy multiple printers and parts if they are on sale.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby orangefurball » 2016-Jan-Mon-16-Jan

I bought one Printrbot and that's it.

I love the company. I love the community here, but they do a lot of strange things and have many overpriced products on their website. I don't like that at all.

My 2013 Makers kit was awesome, missing a couple of screws but it was no big deal, but I trust my designs (and Jon's!) more than their printers.

I have a Jonbot Plus, a Jonbot, my Thingybot and a Thingystock that is in pieces. I'm happy not having a Printrbot to be honest.

I sent in roughly 5 support tickets over about a 6 month period for my Makers kit and my induction probe stuff. They never gave me a reason to not like them, but I only felt with one person (Ian I believe). I just don't like the quality of machine they put out.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby makershaker » 2016-Feb-Wed-19-Feb

There are always two sides to a story but when a customer buys something, and there is a warranty involved, in most cases 99.9% it should be honoured. Sorry to hear about your experience. Sometimes, the best thing to do is just move on.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby musk » 2016-Feb-Thu-16-Feb

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby musk » 2016-Feb-Thu-16-Feb

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby accuprintr » 2016-Mar-Fri-10-Mar

I have been playing with 3D printers since 1992. I have also been working in Information Technology and have BS in Computer Science and minor in Artificial Intelligence. I am also working towards a masters and doctorate in robotics and artificial intelligence. At every cokmpany I worked in the last 20 years, I have been the most knowledgable professional with most experience. I have worked in the largest companies in the world and I used to be in top 100 IT professionals in the world in my field. I have worked in 25 countries - including USA, Canada, Japan, Germany, Czech Republic, and China and India. I have trained IT professionals in China and India, and several eastern european countries.

Now I get a response that I can't figure out how to troubleshoot a 3D printer, and get my warranty voided.

I have owned several BMW cars and motorcycles, and got money back from BMW because their products just plain don't work. You buy $50,000 car, or $30,000 motorcycle and it spends more time in shop, then being driven or ridden. BMW is willing to work with you, get you a replacement car, and get the issue resolved.

Printrbot doesn't want to do anything. I was able to contact Brook Drumm directly and he still didn't want to do anything.

I am still using Printrbot printers, but if I have warranty and I bought a new printer, I don't have to deal with them.

My brother tried Printrbot and gave up - his printer is just gothering dust, being $1,000 paper weight. He is also an IT professional, but he got tired of things breaking all the time, and needing to spend several hundred dollars and lots of time to print something. He is just using Amazon to print his 3D models, which is significantly cheaper than owning your own printer.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby musk » 2016-Mar-Fri-16-Mar

Thanks for the update about how rich, educated, and cultured you are.

Regarding your analogy: BMW is a premium brand who prices premium customer service into their product price. Printrbot is not a premium brand - they're a budget brand. The fact that you can't discern the difference between the two is illuminating.

Regarding your credentials: Self-taught is more impressive than listing a bunch of degrees from your teens and 20's. After people graduate from college, nobody but your employer gives a shi* about your college degrees.

Maybe your master's or doctorate degree programs will include a class on how not to compare a premium worldwide megacorporation to a fledgling hobbyist company (that still sells printers in kits!).
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Mar-Fri-18-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Mar-Fri-18-Mar

Also doesn't matter if it's a budget or premium brand. The US has this thing called merchantability and fitness. And at their prices PB kinda is a premium brand (check the price on those i3 clones), and they sell themselves as better than the other guys. When they ship stuff that works they are, but there's that whole QA thing

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby musk » 2016-Mar-Fri-18-Mar

Just sayin, how many customers could Printrbot possibly have "fired" like they've done with this person? Five? A Hundred? It's gotta be rare.

Something has transpired here that has made this customer an exceptional case.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Mar-Fri-18-Mar

Check G+. It's not real unusual. Too many broken parts, or if you're impolite, and you can be history. No appeal, no way to prove you got a lemon. From reports here they ship a fair number of lemons.

Some customers need to be shown the door, but some actually know what they're doing and expect to get what they paid for. Otherwise they'd have bought from one of the discount vendors

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby orangefurball » 2016-Mar-Fri-21-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby dsegel » 2016-Mar-Sun-23-Mar

I've been wondering about the long-term health of Printrbot as a company for a while now. They've never had good customer service, they clearly have quality control issues, and they (Brook) have been expanding into many other areas (CNC milling, robots, etc.) earlier than I would have expected a new company to do so. Much of it seems to be driven by Brook's interests rather than sound business decisions. Now after hearing the reports being made in this thread, I'm done with recommending them for now.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby plexus » 2016-Mar-Mon-15-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby frankv » 2016-Mar-Mon-15-Mar

I tend to agree with plexus, but a couple of other points:

In any group of people, there will be a range of skills. At one end will be the self-sufficient DIY guy who only requires replacement of faultily manufactured parts, at the other the accountant with no tools (or, perhaps worse, an accountant with a screwdriver) who can't fix anything themselves. Obviously, it's much cheaper to sell to DIYers. But, if a company chooses that path, I think it's the company's responsibility to make it clear that they aren't going to support the other end of the scale. But, given the bell curve, there is continual pressure to move a bit closer to the centre... there are many more customers there. If you're in the "sell to everyone" market, then you have to accept the occasional "support black hole".

Equally, a company can create support black holes if they have poor quality control. A small reduction in component or assembly quality can mean a big increase in support costs.

From a systems point of view, it's important that the vendor wears the cost of failures, because it is the vendor who has control of quality, marketing, etc. If the cost of support goes up, they can either accept it, or address the quality or marketing issues that cause that.

And I think there's a problem with hype in the 3D-printing industry. Printers are sold as plug-and-print, whereas they are really still at the plug-and-adjust-and-fiddle-and-print stage of development.
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby plexus » 2016-Mar-Mon-16-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby Mooselake » 2016-Mar-Mon-18-Mar

It wouldn't be as much of an issue if Printrbot wasn't marketing to novices and beginners - if's pretty rare that a (non mechanically inclined) accountant, with or without a screwdriver, would order a Mori Seiki, but 3D printers are hyped as make whatever you want at home appliances. Offering a full refund for 60 days is a good start, but every solicitation for sale should be accompanied with a notice that these are tricky little buggers that don't even like to work right without a lot of attention, fiddling, and learning. No amount of alien probing will fix that.

However, the OP has the credentials to make it work. If his story is even close to true (and there's no evidence it's not; I read supplying their CV out of frustration and not bragging about their bank account or hand size) then this is a failure on PB's part to deliver what they said they would, a 3D printer with working parts, and then bailing out when reasonably asked to replace the defective pieces.

Back when the Internet started with beeping and bonging I ran an ISP network with a bit under 20K customers, and spent way to much time dealing with the troublemakers (traditionally about 3%, which was pretty close to my experience, iirc). Helped send a few to jail (after subpoenas before you start yelling, for things that deserved being there), and sent others to our competitors (that's a big win :) ). Some customers need to be fired. But I also spent a lot of time on the phone, or occasionally at their home, helping them work out this whole new Internet thing. PB fails to get that helping out part.

Kirk
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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby musk » 2016-Mar-Tue-01-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby plexus » 2016-Mar-Tue-16-Mar

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Re: Printrbot refusing warranty service

Postby PxT » 2016-Mar-Mon-15-Mar

Even Amazon has to fire customers from time to time:
http://www.theguardian.com/money/2016/m ... it-balance
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