This is a discussion on Negative experience with H.B.E. Leatherworks within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I almost hate to do this. Normally I don't even like leaving a waitress with a bad or no tip for lousy service, but I ...
I almost hate to do this. Normally I don't even like leaving a waitress with a bad or no tip for lousy service, but I think enough is enough.
Late last year I purchased my first civilian owned handgun, a CZ 97B .45 ACP. I hung around the CZ boards for a while and decided to work with HBE Leatherworks on getting a holster made up for my gun. I placed the final order for a IWB holster, a decent belt, and a single mag carrier during the last week of December and paid ($229.00) him on January 5th of this year.
On December the 22nd when we were discussing the details he quoted me 14-16 weeks to completion. In late April I sent a quick email requesting an update based on that 14-16 week quote. I got no response. About a week later I emailed again and got no response. About April 22nd I emailed yet again, this time stating that if he didn't feel like responding in private email I could always try posting on a few of the web boards to see if I could get an update that way. Was it a threat on my part? Yup, I don't particularly like being ignored, especially since I already paid in full. Well, our emails must have crossed on the net because I wound up getting two emails from him. First, one with a polite reply stating that my rig would ship in 2-4 weeks. The second email, which I still have, was less polite and told me that instead of threatening him I should have just called for an update. He said that he had an email spam filter problem that had held back a months worth of his mail.
Ok, fine. Well, here I am about 6 weeks past that email where he quoted me 2-4 weeks. Nothing. Not an email or phone call and damn sure no leather for my gun either. A few days ago I sent another email asking for an update. This time I advised him that while my calling might be easier on him, with my current schedule it really isn't for me. I got no response.
So today I sent yet another email. This one asking for my leather or a refund. I ordered a holster and belt in December and it is now June I think I have been more than patient. He quoted me deadlines twice and twice he let them pass without so much as a note. I honestly don't care if his email isn't working. He is running an internet based buisiness, reliable email for his customers to contact him is his responsibility not mine.
I have a day off from work around the middle of next week, if I haven't heard from him by then I'll call and ask for a refund in person. Anybody know a decent leatherworker with a blank for a CZ 97B? I still need a holster.
Chance, sorry to hear this. I have dealt with Eric a couple of times and have been well pleased. I hope you can work this out. Sounds like you have been very patient.
I know Eric to be a stand up guy. I'll give him a call and see what's goin' on.
I too am very sorry to hear this Chance. I contacted Eric via email and then telephonically about 14 weeks ago about building me a custom (my design) holster for my Kimber Ultra Carry. He agreed to undertake the project and I promptly submitted full payment. He told me then that it would be shipped out to me in about 16 weeks.
He recently contacted me and gave me an update with an estimated time of delivery.
I'm sure Eric has a good explanation for the current situation you both are in. He's a very well respected leather craftsman with Membership on many gun forums and I don't think he would jeopardise his reputation especially if the current situation is one that can be worked-out.
What we've got here is failure to communicate.
Well, Chance it sounds to me like you have been a very patient man.
If you paid by major credit card then just call your credit card company up and dispute the charge.
All "on line" transactions are usually 100% guaranteed by the c card company & the money will be paid right back into your account ~ usually within a day or two & then you can just order another rig from somebody else. That seems like the most No Hassle way to get refunded. I always pay for everything "on line" by credit card for that very reason.
Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ
I have to tell you, though, I hate spam filters more than snakes. I get 4 or 5 emails a day from people wanting to know why they have not received their confirmation email. Almost without fail it's trapped in a spam filter. Some people don't know how to manage their filter. I have not looked at what has been blocked on mine in over a year. It's no excuse, mind you, but I can see it happen....
Coimhéad fearg fhear na foighde; Beware the anger of a patient man.
Another reason I don't like e-mail! Most craftsman are stand up guys. They can get swamped and behind though and stuff happens. I'd make the time on a lunch break or something and you'll probably work it all out.
Un-anticipated delays do happen, especially in a one-man shop. This is why I do not even ask for a customer's credit card number until their order is finished and ready to ship.
Not my place to go into details but I know Eric has had some personal problems in his life recently which I'm sure is the reason behind this situation. If you notice he hasn't been on any of the forums lately either which is unusual for him.
"He who makes things with his hands is a laborer, he who makes things with his hands and his head is a craftsman, he who makes things with his hands, his head, and his heart is an artist."
Chance, your's evidently were not the only emails that were held up. I went to Eric's site last week and dicovered that his domain was up for grabs. Evidently the renewal notice for his domain name was one of the emails that got held up by the spam filter. So part of his time last week was spent trying to get his internet domain name back. I checked several days and the first few times I checked the domain name was listed as available. Then after a day or two it said that the domain was being registered. Later the site was back.
Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe. Albert Einstein
See the following post by Eric.
http://www.1911forum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=142699HBE Lead time answers.
I wanted to shoot you a little note, publicly to first off apologize for some orders that are very late and second to tell you I'm in the process of correcting this situation.
I wont make excuses for my schedule. I'm as far as 6-7 months out on some orders. A recent separation from my wife and kids really messed me up, simply put I didnt handle it very well and it affected my work more than I care to admit. Anyway, here are my cards on the public table to be viewed by everyone.
To add to my situation, my emails spam filter hasnt let email through that apparently people have sent me. I believe this is fixed for now.....
My humble and professional apologies for any inconvenience this has caused anyone. I ask that you contact me by phone or email if you have questions of any kind regarding a late/current order you have with me.
All I can say is Im very sorry for this affecting my schedule! Life happens at times and I didnt deal with mine very well. Thanks for your patience and God Bless.
<added by qkshooter>
That post explains a lot - and I too had been surprised about this apparent problem.
Not a customer of Eric's but his rep' sure usually precedes him as a very stand up fella.
Chris - P95
NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.
"To own a gun and assume that you are armed
is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."
http://www.rkba-2a.com/ - a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.
Another reason I won't pay up front for a holster. Most of the "pros" like Alessi, Sparks, etc will not charge you or bill your card till the holster is made and ready to ship. The last rig I ordered from Lou Alessi, he didn't even ask for a card#, thats the way to do business. These folks know if for whatever reason you back out of an order there are plenty more people standing in line for the same thing.
The guy lost his wife & kids. That explains a lot of things to me.
I know (for a fact) that he is a very good man.
He likely has more than enough major life problems right now without an added public forum bashing to further compound those problems.
I think it is probably best to close this thread & for folks that have delayed orders to contact him by phone and attempt to resolve those issues with him privately.
Liberty Over Tyranny Μολὼν λαβέ