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Old Aug 23, 2008, 04:44 AM
Keep smiling
San Francisco, CA
Joined Jul 2008
77 Posts
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Be careful while buying from FMA Direct

I wont buy again from FMA Direct as:

1. They dont allow you to cancel order, even if the item has not been shipped.

2. The dont allow for any price adjustment even if the prices of the ordered item has been reduced and your item is not yet shipped.

I ordered CellPro charger at $74.99, I got a mail from the that item price has been reduced to $60 untill Aug 31, 2008. I called up to get the price adjustment as my item was still not shipped by them. I was offered $14.99 discount for future full priced purchases or asked to return the material after receiving it bearing shipping cost of $8.99 and returning cost of ~$4.99, toalling to $13.98 loss.

Reason given to me by their manager for not cancelling the order is that they will have a loss for the credit card transaction which accordng to me will be a very small amount in cents.

This is the first time I am seeing a party not allowing you to cancel unshipped order. Surprisingly they are so rude in thier replies.

See some one else had the similar experience:

http://www.z425.com/radio-control/fm...-lipo-charger/
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Old Aug 23, 2008, 08:30 AM
Registered User
Crossville, TN
Joined Dec 2004
2,907 Posts
Your FMA experience comes as no surprise. Our LHS owner is mobility challenged in that he has to use an electric scooter to get around the Toledo Show. Years back the FMA booth personel treated him terribly. Just an arrogant collection of B_______DS. Nobody in this area has had anything to do with FMA since. FWIW.
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Old Aug 23, 2008, 12:41 PM
Keep smiling
San Francisco, CA
Joined Jul 2008
77 Posts
Can I go to a Consumer Court for presenting this case? Will that teach them a lesson how to give better services to customers?
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Old Aug 24, 2008, 12:02 AM
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Joined Aug 2008
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I was considering the Cellpro 10s, but after hearing this, I'm very hesitant to go with them. Customer service is very important to me. Thanks for the info.
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Old Aug 24, 2008, 06:27 PM
Keep smiling
San Francisco, CA
Joined Jul 2008
77 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rarbit
I was considering the Cellpro 10s, but after hearing this, I'm very hesitant to go with them. Customer service is very important to me. Thanks for the info.
It looks that their Sales manager / Account Manager / Service Manager is the same person "Cindy". I wanted to talk to her boss, she hinted me "No Use" as he is her "relative..." This looks like a home run company. Be careful while dealing with FMA Direct. Just to save their few cents, they dont mind if you loose 10s of dollars, few cents are more important to them than keeping customer happy.
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Old Aug 24, 2008, 09:24 PM
That'll hold until ...
swatson144's Avatar
Hampton Roads Va.
Joined Oct 2004
3,560 Posts
It starts at the top with Fred. Complaining or even asking a question about something is your fault. Hooray for us, forget you is the motto.

Steve
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Old Aug 25, 2008, 10:58 AM
Registered User
France
Joined Mar 2008
121 Posts
I have never heard of *any* decent company refusing to cancel an unshipped order.

This totally sucks and sure is a good reason to stay away from them. Sorry to hear about your issue with them.

I already noticed before how they carefully choose which question to respond to (the one that can make their product sell) and which question they ellect to ignore (the ones about their claims, information -or lack of-) on the forum.

Overall I do not like the way they handle their business/manage customers.
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Old Aug 25, 2008, 01:30 PM
Registered User
Ohio
Joined May 2003
2,083 Posts
Tower Hobbies (a decent company) would not cancel my unshipped order when I had to go out of town on emergency and would not be home to receive the package. They also would not delay the shipping for one week until I got back and could receive the package. They said once the order was in the warehouse there was nothing that could be done. I had to send a friend over to take the package off my porch and put it in the house.

Ed
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Old Aug 25, 2008, 05:48 PM
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Joined Jan 2002
90 Posts
Jamie Marks, GM, FMA Direct

It is entirely appropriate for customers of FMA Direct or any other company to post legitimate disagreements with vendors in this forum. In the same way, it is appropriate for vendors to post when company policy is incorrectly quoted by a customer. It is NOT the policy of FMA Direct to refuse to cancel an order before the order is shipped. Although it doesn't happen often, we do cancel orders from time to time. In this case, April 1 had been corresponding with Cindy Marks of FMA Direct who had advised him that we would not do a chargeback to his credit card for the balance of $14.95 that represented the difference between the special price and the full retail price for the CP4S charger. April 1 had ordered the product two days prior to the special price announcement. All of our specials state specifically that special pricing is not retroactive. In fact, FMA was under no obligation to apply a credit to April 1's account at all. That was done as a courtesy. When April 1 first contacted FMA, his order had not shipped, but in the interim period of back and forth discussions, the order was picked up by UPS and obviously could not be recalled. During the last conversation with the gentleman, Cindy informed him that the package had been shipped and his only recourse, if not satisfied, was to return the product for a refund
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Old Aug 25, 2008, 08:32 PM
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Sisyphus's Avatar
Upper U.S.
Joined Jan 2008
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Jamie, I know you mean well. I own a several FMA chargers. I have had some very unpleasant dealings with Cindy, and it has, indeed, left a "bad taste."

As for April 1, I suspect an "exception" to "policy" would be worth many "advertising" dollars.

Sum: I love FMA products but you guys can be harsh, at times, (just my opinion) and I'll never deal with Cindy, again.

Even a "wrong" customer is always "right," and any company that deals with folks this way (not every transaction must result in a profit) almost always succeeds and is healthier than one which insists all transactions must be profitable.

ADDENDUM


I received a PM from a "person" at FMA stating or implying that (1) I have mistakenly identified Cindy Marks as the person with whom I had unforgetable dealings and (2) FMA's records of communications with this other person show my apparent mistake.

Well, I may well be in error, and if so, Cindy, I apologize to you, but my comments or opinions about the substance of my dealings with "someone" at FMA stand.

However, substantively, I think the issue is not "who" said or did certain things but "whether" certain things were said or done.

Of course, I don't keep records so I must rely upon my aging memory regarding my own dealings with FMA empoyees.

Anyway, whomever this "person" might be, she "may" have offended another local recently by (and this is, of course, hearsay, so treat it as such!) ending a toll free call when he strayed into the area of technical support.

So, I'm sorry, Cindy, if I erred as to WHO dealt with me, but I'm sticking with the rest.
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Old Aug 26, 2008, 12:58 AM
Keep smiling
San Francisco, CA
Joined Jul 2008
77 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamie Marks
It is entirely appropriate for customers of FMA Direct or any other company to post legitimate disagreements with vendors in this forum. In the same way, it is appropriate for vendors to post when company policy is incorrectly quoted by a customer. It is NOT the policy of FMA Direct to refuse to cancel an order before the order is shipped. Although it doesn't happen often, we do cancel orders from time to time. In this case, April 1 had been corresponding with Cindy Marks of FMA Direct who had advised him that we would not do a chargeback to his credit card for the balance of $14.95 that represented the difference between the special price and the full retail price for the CP4S charger. April 1 had ordered the product two days prior to the special price announcement. All of our specials state specifically that special pricing is not retroactive. In fact, FMA was under no obligation to apply a credit to April 1's account at all. That was done as a courtesy. When April 1 first contacted FMA, his order had not shipped, but in the interim period of back and forth discussions, the order was picked up by UPS and obviously could not be recalled. During the last conversation with the gentleman, Cindy informed him that the package had been shipped and his only recourse, if not satisfied, was to return the product for a refund
Jamie, probably you are misinformed. I talked to Cindy 3 times just in the span of 10 minutes, and this third conversion was to find out if some one else could help me out. Order was not shipped during those minutes, I know it as I got a subsequent email from UPS which clearly shows the date and time of pickup and expected date of delivery. So, I really dont understand why she did not accept to cancel the order. She insisted that I should ship the items back after receiving them. Later on I understood through her email that she wanted to save on credit card transactions.

Secondly, I was not asking for any favor or any obligation. I was just responding to FMA's mail to me stating that the price of the 4S 4A charger has been reduced to $60 until Aug 31. That was a good and exciting news for me, I talked to her for a price match as the item was not yet shipped. I asked after two days of placing order cause FMA's office sent me revised price only after two days and FMA had not delivered the item even after 48 hrs though their mail had indicated that it will be shipped in 48 hours. She did not accept the request to cancel the order or to match the price.

How do you answer this question: Cindy had told me through few emails that item was already shipped to me before I asked to cancel the order, then I told her that I have email from UPS clearly stating the date and time the order was picked up by them, and she changed her stand and wrote back to me that item was in her warehouse at the time call was made and now Jamie you also say it was shipped. I have her email and UPS email to prove that you are wrong. Jamie, if I am not wrong, you are the owner of the company.

Today, she said I will get full refund after she gets my returned items. This means I can reorder today at reduced price. So, who lost? I lost time and faith in FMA and FMA lost money and good will. Is this the way to work efficiently? If anything goes wrong with charger, I got to deal with Cindy again as she represents Service manager position too, NO WAY, I wont.

Thanks to RCGroups Forum!!!!!
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Old Aug 26, 2008, 03:11 AM
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Crossville, TN
Joined Dec 2004
2,907 Posts
Jamie Marks is the VP and General Manager of FMA Direct. ( 9 years )
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Old Aug 26, 2008, 04:37 AM
Registered User
France
Joined Mar 2008
121 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by no stick
Tower Hobbies (a decent company) would not cancel my unshipped order
Ed
Sorry to hear that, it's dissappointing as well. Yet, TH is a huge dealer, they must have very precise and automated process to deal with the amount of order. I can easily believe that the person you talked to did not have any mean to catch your order before it ships, it is totally possible, even if not very satisfying for the customer.

On the other side, a small company that could easily cancel your order and refuse to do so because they just don't want to, then it's an entirely different story.

IMO FMA's answer to this sucks especially if, as suggested by April1, their answer is based on a lack of information, or worse, a strategy of twisting the truth. Changing your stand is an extremely dangerous strategy, it is the BEST way to loose your credibility... and customers.
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Old Aug 26, 2008, 08:29 AM
The Eh Team
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Joined Aug 2000
954 Posts
y'know, I think there are really two distinct aspects to this:

1) company honoring a customer's desire to cancel an order

I believe any consumer should regard this as their right, and I suspect that most states would probably have consumer laws that support this (someone correct me if I'm wrong).

2) company being free to choose the terms of a sale / FMA policy of sale price not being retroactive

Here I don't see there being any particular right; FMA states that sales are not retroactive (I got the same emailed offer), and simply canceling and reordering is really just a stunt to try to get around the terms of the sale price offer. I don't believe FMA is under any obligation to offer the sale price after such an obvious stunt, given that they stated no retroactive sale pricing. If there's a disagreement, it really ought to be simply that many people might not like those terms, and might choose to not do business with FMA on that basis. Many companies these days do offer the security to customers of protecting them against immediate price drops, to encourage customers to buy today without risk of missing out on tomorrow's sale.
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Old Aug 26, 2008, 08:37 AM
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Upper U.S.
Joined Jan 2008
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E.A., I think "stunt" is a bit harsh. Ask yourself, "Do I think April 1 did anything morally wrong?" I suggest your will answer, "No."

Guys, the ill will this sort of thing generates just isn't worth it-why not say, "We love all our customers so our 'special offer' is retroactive for seven (or whatever) days." Then, begin establishing a small reserve to cover future retroactive sales-and when I say small, I mean small!

My own experience with Cindy Marks makes me believe April 1.
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