Friday, September 01, 2006

For the Guitar Players

A cautionary tale ...

At the end of March, I decided I needed a new guitar case, in honor of my new guitar which is supposed to be here any day now. Maybe even today ...

I got online and built a virtual case, on Cedar Creek's website. This is a cool feature, by the way -- you tell the software what color and finish and hardware you want, and it produces an image. I wound up with brown faux "swamp alligator" on the outside, and gold plush on the interior.

I have one of my classical guitars encased in a Cedar Creek tweed, and it's a fine box -- five-ply laminated wood, arch-top, six latches, very sturdy and heavy, and if not quite a top-of-the-line Calton case, a really good deal for about half as much.

So I emailed the sales department, got the price and delivery information, which was four weeks, and then sent a credit card number. Being cautious, I split the card number into two emails, half with one, half with the next.

June rolled around, no case, so I sent another email query.

Seems they hadn't gotten the second email, so they hadn't put the order through, and the salesman had been on the road, so he missed it.

Okay. That could have been my fault. I re-sent the number. First week of June.

Third week in July, having not heard back, I sent another email? What's up?

Salesman got back to me -- Sorry about that, my order was still in progress, but things got busy, the shop's volume went up, and the 6-8 week lead time had gone to 8-10 weeks.

Well, okay, since my order went in June 6th, I figured middle of August, right? Maybe another week past that.

So, last week of August, no case, I sent another query, and even though it has been only a few days, so far, no response.

Thus far, this process has run five months. If you discount the first chunk due entirely to my error and restart the clock, that makes it three months, which is still somewhat longer than the slipped delivery of two-to-two-and-a-half months ...

I think Cedar Creek produces well-made and good-looking cases, I like the one I have, but if my experience is any indication, best you be prepared to wait a while if you order one.

Or, "Ho, that's a good one on me!"

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