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A Big Room of Misfit Toys
I am trying to ponder the sheer quantity of string instruments being destroyed in transit during the holiday season
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Irv
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December 24, 2017 - 5:30 pm
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I read the Amazon reviews of the Cecilio CCO 600 cello a few days back.  They were rather frightening.  Most customers reported that several cellos arrived with broken necks or similar and were returned until a suitable instrument was obtained.  The shipment and return of a single cello has to be about $150, even with the parcel deals brokered by the big companies.  It was not unusual to read that up to 6 attempts were needed to finalize the deal.  And the some odd $800 cellos were likely to be a loss as well.  If the shipment expenses are of the magnitude that I think, one wonders how large the profit per instrument must be to make the enterprise economically viable.      

Multiply the situation across the spectrum of musical instruments given as gifts each year and there clearly must be a very large room of misfit toys.

Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing.  —Werner von Braun

Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.         —Frank Zappa

Experience is a difficult teacher, it gives the test first and the lesson after.

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newbie-Ron
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December 24, 2017 - 6:21 pm
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I once ordered a brazilwood violin bow from Amazon.

They sent it in a large box, with absolutely no padding anywhere.  Of course, it arrived with a broken tip, and I returned it for a refund.

After that experience, I learned the importance of only ordering a bow or instrument  from a dedicated music store, or to visit a shop in person.

I took a tour of the Amazon fulfillment center in Delaware a couple years ago, back when they were offering tours. Everything at Amazon is based on doing things in the fastest, cheapest way possible, with no real human care.  I let my Amazon prime membership lapse, and try to buy things elsewhere.  I’ve been sad to see so many smaller store chains and mom and pops close, so Fiddlerman and the like need to be supported.

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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December 26, 2017 - 4:48 am
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Except for my shoulder rest and strings, everything in my viola case was purchased in person at dedicated violin shops. It's true that the packing tends to get much better as price goes up, but I'm not willing to take risks with shipping.

Even gate-checking with airlines, which gets you much more careful handling than shipping, is too risky, and string players avoid it when traveling unless there is absolutely no other option.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
December 26, 2017 - 3:48 pm
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 14717

newbie-Ron said
I once ordered a brazilwood violin bow from Amazon.

They sent it in a large box, with absolutely no padding anywhere.  Of course, it arrived with a broken tip, and I returned it for a refund.

After that experience, I learned the importance of only ordering a bow or instrument  from a dedicated music store, or to visit a shop in person.

I took a tour of the Amazon fulfillment center in Delaware a couple years ago, back when they were offering tours. Everything at Amazon is based on doing things in the fastest, cheapest way possible, with no real human care.  I let my Amazon prime membership lapse, and try to buy things elsewhere.  I’ve been sad to see so many smaller store chains and mom and pops close, so Fiddlerman and the like need to be supported.  

We guarantee the delivery and condition of your instrument and accessories as well as your satisfaction. You are right that it is extremely important to take care when shipping orders. At our shop, accessories are packed by the customer service people while instruments are packed by the luthiers. They REALLY care that the instrument arrives the way they pack them. If anything bad happens during the instruments travel we will take care of it though it is extremely rare in our case. 🙂

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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