Unusual Preorder Question I have

Well, I just had a question about preorders. Why if you don’t like the engine do you have to take it? Here’s why I asked. If I order  a Martin guitar from a dealer and I don’t like it when it comes in I don’t have to take it. I can request a different one or a refund.

Seems like when you preorder a model railroad product you have to accept it.

Original Post

Unless you paid in advance or gave a deposit (shame on you if you did either of those things, as it's completely unnecessary), you don't HAVE to take it.  But it's bad form not to, and that dealer probably won't let you get away with it twice.

If you don't like a preordered item, talk with the dealer.  Perhaps ask if he has another buyer and won't mind if you pass on it.  Most dealers are relatively small businesses, and unexpectedly having to sit on a $1500 engine can be a big deal.    

If you're not sure about an item, wait until you see it, and then buy it.

 That’s a great question?, and MALLARD4468 made some good points. It’s very true that our smaller dealers simply don’t have the funds to take hits of a “$1000- and Up”  BTO Pre-Ordered Train Products as the collector-operator folks have slowly disappeared over the Years. Yes, there was a time when a dealer could ask another toy train enthusiast to accept an expensive engine or accessory as a way to allow cancellation of an order, but it’s not easy Today. When I retired April 2nd of 2018, I still had a Bunch Of pre-orders not shipped, but, I prepared for it as my dealer does not have $3K to stock unsold merchandise. He is working with me and I with him, and it’s going to be OK, we have been doing this for 25 years....The problem, is the Slow Slow shipping by our Manufacturers....One could Pass on, talking about our aging hobbiest and not be here today to  finish the purchase. This is an issue a small dealer has to contend with. (Sometimes Our Spouses are not aware of our Ediction)... So, I feel Obligated to keep my commitment with my good dealer..... I am happy to be a healthy older fellow, 74 plus, but will have to watch my budget from now on.....It’s a fun hobby, and addiction of simply a Lot Of Fun....Happy Railroading...B09C9D7F-A7A0-41CA-8E4D-D29185437C9DDAE44BB4-5444-4583-8386-06A1AE653FF67F079EFE-BF0E-45B8-BFDE-94D51AB64B2D

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Mallard4468 posted:

Unless you paid in advance or gave a deposit (shame on you if you did either of those things, as it's completely unnecessary), you don't HAVE to take it.  But it's bad form not to, and that dealer probably won't let you get away with it twice.

 

I agree with your sentiment to a point.  And maybe that point is $1000.  I have a USRA Light Mountain on preorder.  If that thing shows up with a bunch of problems like we've been seeing with other engines, I'm sending it back for a refund immediately.  To me that's a retailer's primary role.  They are the go-between.  If they won't stand behind the products they carry, then abolish the dealer network and the makers should sell direct.  Heck, maybe that's where we're headed!  Anyway, I hope and pray it doesn't come to that.  I want the engine and I want to be on good standing with the dealer.

Wayne, a reputable dealer will open the item and fully test it before you pay for it and take it home.  This way if something is wrong out of the box you're not out any money.   Of course, if everything is as advertised, there should be no buyer's remorse and you should promptly pay for and take delivery of the item.  A dealer should be prepared to not complete a sale if the item is defective out of the box - that's part of being in business and is no different than any other line of business.

-Greg

Member of the Brotherhood of the Crappy Basement Layout

Associate Member of the NJ Hi-Railers

Image result for nj hirailers logo

 

Mallard4468 posted:

Unless you paid in advance or gave a deposit (shame on you if you did either of those things, as it's completely unnecessary), you don't HAVE to take it.  But it's bad form not to, and that dealer probably won't let you get away with it twice.

If you don't like a preordered item, talk with the dealer.  Perhaps ask if he has another buyer and won't mind if you pass on it.  Most dealers are relatively small businesses, and unexpectedly having to sit on a $1500 engine can be a big deal.    

If you're not sure about an item, wait until you see it, and then buy it.

That is what I would recommend as well. Do you HAVE to take it if you preordered without a deposit? Probably not, but it sure is bad form to reject it and it likely is something the dealer will not permit you to do a second time unless he or she already considers you a "regular" customer.

This is just another reason I won't do pre-order as I don't have a local dealer, in-fact closes one is about 4 hours away. Have heard horror stories of some of the big dealers telling you to send it back to Lionel as they don't want to deal with it, is my guess. Which probably the really is the best thing to do anyway. But I feel it should be there job not mine, as they sold it to me. If you sell it you should take care of the customer. 

Bill

rtraincollector posted:

 But I feel it should be there job not mine, as they sold it to me. If you sell it you should take care of the customer. 

This is were confusion sets in, who takes responsibility for receiving a defective product? The Dealer or the buyer? Outside of Model Trains if I get home and the item turns out to be defective, no matter who manufactured it, the store, Lowell's, Home Depot, Wal Mart, etc. take the item(s) back for a full refund or exchange. I been lucky to only have 3 items that ended up defective and was told to send it to manufacturer for repairs, rather then Dealer taking responsibility for the item. Upon repair of one item (very expensive 1700.00+ engine), repaired came back with several pieces broken off and an added defect which I decided to live with and glue broken pieces back on after Dealer said to send it back. At no time was a refund mentioned, nor an exchange. Rather in our Hobby we seem to have to accept calling for a repair, packing up, driving to post office, USP, etc. to ship then wait week(s) for return and hope everything is fixed and not damaged during transit. I do feel sorry for Dealers, because defective or damaged items made, will effect their business for future sales in which they have no control of the final products they receive for those that pre-ordered.

But above all, BTO parts to fix broken or lost parts are many times non-existent.

As to other type toys, some I bought for kids, (nieces and nephews) remote control, battery operated, etc. toys that were defective or non working, was able to return for an exchange. Many times bought months before a Birthday or Christmas with never a hassle.

Its a difficult time for us in the Hobby, and also Dealers. The future may well be in the hands of the manufacturers, rather then the buyers to produce a quality reliable finished product.

I can relate to the issue of slow delivery of pre-orders with deposits. 

Back in 1994 my father-in-law passed away.  Since trains are what we had in common (besides his daughter), I went to his local shop, and sure enough he had deposits on multiple pre-orders.  The folks were very accommodating and refunded the deposits. 

My mother-in-law had no idea he was doing this.  It would have been pretty brutal if the orders came in, and she felt she was under obligation to pay for stuff she would never use.

Fred

I never pre order and nobody else should either. Why should I take responsibility for an item that arrives broken or has issues.

I may miss out you say, if it happens so be it but I doubt it. I really wanted the mogul but after delivery and hearing all the issues with it I passed on it. No pre order no bad feeling with the dealer. 

Dave

Allan Miller posted:
Mallard4468 posted:

Unless you paid in advance or gave a deposit (shame on you if you did either of those things, as it's completely unnecessary), you don't HAVE to take it.  But it's bad form not to, and that dealer probably won't let you get away with it twice.

If you don't like a preordered item, talk with the dealer.  Perhaps ask if he has another buyer and won't mind if you pass on it.  Most dealers are relatively small businesses, and unexpectedly having to sit on a $1500 engine can be a big deal.    

If you're not sure about an item, wait until you see it, and then buy it.

That is what I would recommend as well. Do you HAVE to take it if you preordered without a deposit? Probably not, but it sure is bad form to reject it and it likely is something the dealer will not permit you to do a second time unless he or she already considers you a "regular" customer.

I've taken pre-ordered items when they came not to my liking, like the MTH Burlington Zepher having  huge gaps between cars versus their M10,000 with matching round "vestibules" filling the spaces that when displayed one above the other they made guests cringe. With the amount of defective new in the box items arriving along with those painted in a clearly wrong color, I'd guess many folks (other than the "Kool Aid" drinkers and fan boys as one post mentioned) are just returning them for a refund and telling the store to send them back to the manufacturer. We don't pre-order any more.

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