Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue

Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 10:43 AM


This is a long one but it has to be that way. I feel it is important that people here know about this manufacturer and the position taken in this matter;

Recently a local dealer presented an invoice to me for review. I was informed by him, that a customer who purchased a grand had specifically requested a certain local technician do the warranty tuning. Apparently the client told the dealer that this person has been his long-time technician. For information about this invoice please see this thread from the tech forum at this link;

Warranty Tuning Only

The dealer, in a gesture of goodwill, agreed to let this technician do the warranty tuning, even though this particular technician is not a warranty technician for this store, or brand.

During the same phone call regarding this invoice matter, the dealer asked me to look at and repair a small warranty issue with a grand piano. One of the plate screws was either loose or stripped.

I asked the dealer to contact the manufacturer and get instructions for the recommended repair directly from the factory floor. After all, this was a brand new grand piano, only a few months old, and I wanted to repair this instrument in accordance with the manufacturer wishes so as to be in line with the warrant requirements. The instructions came to me a couple of days following.

I contacted the client with the warranty problem, and made an appointment to view and repair the piano. To complete the warranty repair I had to remove the action/keyboard. At that point I was making some observations about the unusual regulation I found. I also observed that the Teflon had been removed from the knuckles on this piano and thought to myself, “Hmmm I just looked at an invoice where the Teflon has been removed……” For information about the Teflon issue please see this thread from the tech forum;

Teflon Powder

I decided to take some photos of the action and keyboard. After completing the warranty repair and I forwarded the invoice for the service call to the dealer, I told him BTW have a look at these photos. The regulation on this one seems to be a long way from correct.

I got another call from the dealer right away. He was surprised that the photos came from the same piano; after all he was looking at an invoice total of $1200.00 presented to him for that very same grand piano. Further, the grand in question had been fully prepped and tuned in accordance with factory and warranty required specification previous to being sent out the client.

It was then that I realized all of this was connected to the same grand piano; the Teflon comments, the ambiguous and phantom charges on the invoice, along with charges for work not completed properly, and in some cases not completed at all.

Two days later I received another phone call from the dealer. Apparently the warranty repair I had completed was failing. The piano owner and his technician had complained to the dealer about this. Further, both of them had contacted the manufacturer directly to lodge a complaint.
The dealer asked me to re-inspect the piano and the repair I had done. At the same time the dealer asked if he could bring another independent technician in to review the regulation changes I had discovered and to review the repair I had done.
We all attended the home of the client with this piano; the dealer, the owner and his wife, their technician, myself and another technician.

Both the other technician and I went over the regulation steps. Previous to this appointment I had offered a copy of the instructions I had received from the factory floor to the other technician; both of us had a look at the warranty repair and discussed what I had done to complete that repair.
At this point we felt we had enough information to file reports on the regulation to the dealer. It was then that the owner complained the warranty repair was not working. We asked what the complaint was. We discovered, shortly after I had been here to complete the warranty repair, the owner’s technician had come over and deliberately tampered with the repair. This admission was made by the owner in front of everyone present.

Remember that the owner’s technician did not have any authorization to complete any warranty issues with this piano.
The owner’s technician was asked a specific question; “with more than 20 plate screws and bolts in the plate how did you find one that was loose originally?”

In front of everyone present this technician states; “I heard something in the tuning.”

The other technician and I were dumfounded at this statement. We both packed up our tools and made an exit. The following day we both filed reports to the dealer recommending that this technician no longer be permitted to complete any work on this piano. Failing that, recommend that the manufacturer void the warranty in writing to the owner.

Part two follows.
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 10:44 AM

This one went past the technical director of this brand and all the way to the owner of company.

Now here is the email reply the dealer has received. This was forwarded to me a few days ago; I have changed the name of the owner. This email comes from the technical director after discussion with the owner of the company;

Quote:
The owner and I have discussed this case at length now and we have decided the following and confirmed as much to Mr Smith.

1) The dealer will no longer be responsible for the Guarantee for the PE 162 model sold to Mr Smith serial number xxxxxxxxxx The Guarantee will be covered by Brodmann Vienna in future. Please forward the Warranty card to Vienna.

2) Brodmann will be responsible for the costs involved in finalizing the frame screw repair to the piano, directly with the owner’s technician.

3) Mr Smith has confirmed he is 100% happy with his chosen technician looking after his piano in future and he is aware that the piano needs to be maintained correctly for the warranty to be valid.

4) Mr Smith has confirmed he does not want to take up the dealer’s kind offer to re-regulate and tune his piano once more.

5) Brodmann cannot become involved in discussions or disputes between the dealer and Mr Smith’s technician about any previous arrangements to carry out tunings, or service work, or after sales service work. Please sort this out directly.

We appreciate that you will not be comfortable with these decisions, but trust that matters will now be allowed to rest.

Once again, we thank you for your continued support of Brodmann Pianos.

With best regards,

(Signed by the owner and technical director)

Joseph Brodmann Pianos.


So for a hundred dollar tuning and then the subsequent warranty repair we now have;

Atmosphere between dealer and manufacturer= poisoned.

Atmosphere between dealer and new piano owner=poisoned.

Atmosphere between the owner’s technician and this dealer=poisoned.

Atmosphere between myself and owner’s technician=poisoned.

Atmosphere between another attending technician and the owner’s technician=poisoned.

I am, at present, aware of two other Brodman products both with warranty items for repair.

The chances of ANY technician locally here doing warranty work for a Brodman piano in the future?

Slim to no chance at all.

And this is all for a $100.00 warranty repair.
Posted by: terminaldegree

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 12:27 PM

Wow. Just wow...
Your summation at the end is particularly sad and must be frustrating.

I suppose if the customer really thinks this outcome is in their best interest, I'd probably leave it alone. In the interest of full disclosure, I have requested reimbursement of a tech I hand-picked for the first service on a prior purchase (instead of the store tech), and a few things popped up that should have been done by dealer prep, but it was nothing like the example you cited.
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 12:50 PM



A little additional information for everyone….
Brodman has stated clearly that they would like this “technician” to complete a plate screw repair.

For comparison here are some other examples of repairs done by the technician that Brodman has chosen to go with.

This is a Bosie. Note the cleanliness of the instrument along with the plate screw repair and the bass string repair.

If anyone has problems with the link below let me know; these photos have been sent to me by colleagues who are aware of this technician and his work....

Technical Expertise
Posted by: Mike Carr

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 01:03 PM


This situation, of course we’re only hearing one side of the story, more or less underscores that the warranty relationship is between the owner and the manufacturer, not the dealer. And it is just as important to find a good tuner as it is to find a good piano.

As this melodrama unfolds, I keep asking myself, and apparently Brodmann Pianos came to the same conclusion, where were the grown-ups?

Mike
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 02:17 PM

I'm confused. What does Brodman actually think? That YOU messed up the repair of the plate screw and that YOU messed up the action? I presume you have submitted your side of the story and your evidence.

What does Brodman actually want as a long run outcome?

Do they seem to want this owner to choose an incompetent tech and then to pay this man thousands of dollars to fix his own mistakes? What am I missing here?

Is Brodman incompetent in your view?

P.S. I have never heard of a bad plate screw? What piano could come off of a reputable shop floor with such a slipshod piece of work not caught by a very basic quality control inspection?
Posted by: Dave B

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 02:23 PM

Mike I agree with what your saying. But I think the bigger point that Dan is making is that this technician, by doing more harm than good with his repairs, regardless of the reasons, is taking advantage of the unwitting customer.

One bad technician can make all technicians look bad. Same with dealers. Same with every field.
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 02:26 PM

Quote:
the owner’s technician had come over and deliberately tampered with the repair. This admission was made by the owner in front of everyone present.


This language "tampered with" is charged stuff. Do you know what was done to the part that YOU had repaired? If it was indeed "tampered with" then there may be legal ramifications here.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 03:28 PM

Dan, I looked at the photos you posted. There is no way in Hades I'd accept that kind of work from any piano technician. The term "butchered" comes to mind.

In fact, if that was my piano and it was under warranty, and that was indeed warranty work, I'd want a brand new piano to replace the ruined one.

Rick
Posted by: j&j

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 04:08 PM

Holy Smokes, after looking at those pictures of that repair on the Bosie, I could do a much better job and I have never take any course and do not have any experience repairing pianos. I only have electronics repair and fabrication experience from an apprenticeship 25+ years ago. One of the very first things I was taught was how to properly put in a screw, bolts, and rivets.

How is this technician still in business?

This certainly makes me appreciate the wonderful work of my RPT!
Posted by: Bob

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/08/12 09:41 PM

Regarding those Bosie bass strings - I'm guessing the tech did not have the correct replacement strings, and simply put something in there on a temporary basis so the piano could be played until the correct replacements arrived. That temporary repair would be preferred over removing the hammer, or blocking the key. At least the key would function and not disrupt the pianist. Simply doing nothing would allow the hammer to wedge between two adjacent bass strings, stressing the hammer flange, and causing key touch issues. Hopefully, the repair was supposed to last just a few days, till new strings arrived.

The piano is filthy. No regularly serviced piano should look like that.

I hesitate to evaluate any technician, however, unless I know what he had to start with, and the working conditions he endured. Sometimes the customer refuses to do the proper repair and just says "make it work".

One common theme in this business is very few pianos get the level of service they need - usually due to cost factors. Many customers don't see the value in proper maintenance.

Not defending, or criticizing, but just trying to be fair.
Posted by: beethoven986

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 12:19 AM

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos


A little additional information for everyone….
Brodman has stated clearly that they would like this “technician” to complete a plate screw repair.

For comparison here are some other examples of repairs done by the technician that Brodman has chosen to go with.

This is a Bosie. Note the cleanliness of the instrument along with the plate screw repair and the bass string repair.

If anyone has problems with the link below let me know; these photos have been sent to me by colleagues who are aware of this technician and his work....

Technical Expertise


Woah. I'm trying to figure out how someone even managed to do that... confused
Posted by: Rod Verhnjak

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 12:34 AM

Originally Posted By: beethoven986
Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos


A little additional information for everyone….
Brodman has stated clearly that they would like this “technician” to complete a plate screw repair.

For comparison here are some other examples of repairs done by the technician that Brodman has chosen to go with.

This is a Bosie. Note the cleanliness of the instrument along with the plate screw repair and the bass string repair.

If anyone has problems with the link below let me know; these photos have been sent to me by colleagues who are aware of this technician and his work....

Technical Expertise


Woah. I'm trying to figure out how someone even managed to do that... confused


I figure since it looks like the treble has been "restrung" the person had too much tension on the wire while they fastened the pressure bar back on. So in tightening the screws there must have been a few slips on the way.

Also I notice the web screws are not original and have been replaced.

As for the steel wire in the bass, those notes don't get played much on an imperial. smirk
Posted by: 88Key_PianoPlayer

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 02:19 AM

Originally Posted By: Rod Verhnjak
As for the steel wire in the bass, those notes don't get played on an imperial. smirk


Hmm... I STILL have run out of keys on the few occasions I've had the opportunity to play an Imperial! shocked
Posted by: Wound up

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 04:30 AM

nah, this is a case of smoke n mirrors... Silverwood spelled it out, this wayward tech is manipulating and playing the deal..

Slvwood, You should inform the manufacturer..
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 09:25 AM

Thanks for all the comments. A couple of responses;

Piano Dad,

As I have no idea what Brodman is thinking; your questions are best directed to Christian Höferl owner Joseph Brodman Pianos.
After all, the email showing that the decision to dismiss both myself and this local dealer came from his office.

Dave B,

Has it correct, with the addition that he is taking advantage of the client, the dealer, and Brodman while sabotaging my work and then lodging a complaint about that work to further his own gain.

Piano Dad (second posting);

I reset the plate screw with what is called an interference fit. After threads have formed over a short period of time the screw is removed and the holes is lined with adhesive and the screw is installed with a release agent. Then, and only then, can the screw be clamped down completely tight. It would be impossible to clamp the screw down with no threads in the hole.

Previous to the second phase of this repair, by admission from the owner, the owner’s technician came over two days following the initial first step, and tampered with the repair by over tightening the screw and destroying the newly formed threads I had made.

Rickster,

Thanks for the observations. This technician had authorization from the dealer to perform a warranty tuning only. He was not authorized to perform any warranty repairs.

j&j,

This technician is a long time PTG member, in fact and RPT. In the last week I have discovered documentation and complaints that go back more than a decade, and possibly more.

Bob,

That is a fair assessment of the Bosie strings. I will research your observations and get back to you.

I do know that two technicians who are working on the same instruments are documenting everything they find in photo and on paper. These photos and others I have not posted yet were forwarded to me.

Bee986,

I have discontinued trying to figure out anything this person does while calling it work.

Rod,

I suspected the same thing; stringing and then replacement of the pressure bar…..

Wound up,

I reported this all to the dealer along with another technician who attended in the second inspection. The dealer reported all of this to Brodman.

Brodman dismissed all of us from this file and went with the owner’s technician.
Posted by: PianoStudent88

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 10:35 AM

Dan, for pianists, how would you recommend we avoid getting into situations like this?
Posted by: BDB

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 12:37 PM

Originally Posted By: PianoStudent88
Dan, for pianists, how would you recommend we avoid getting into situations like this?


That is a good question! One of the high profile technicians around here used to do sub-par work, but a lot of his customers swore by him. There were only rare instances that I would see his work, because he insisted that nobody else touch pianos he had worked on, which is a warning sign. After he killed himself, I would see more of his work, and there were all sorts of problems with it: way off spec, screws left off, etc.

You see some of the warning signs here: An invoice with vague terms in it. Finding lots of things wrong with the piano. Finding fault with other people's work. No discussion with the person paying the bill.

Recommendations do not always work. The bad actors will join organizations or seek out publicity to boost their reputations. The organizations are slow to weed them out, so you cannot rely on protection from an affiliation. You have to be diligent.
Posted by: MiddleAgedProdigy

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 12:58 PM

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

This technician is a long time PTG member, in fact and RPT. In the last week I have discovered documentation and complaints that go back more than a decade, and possibly more.


This too me is the most disappointing aspect of the story.

How are we (the public) supposed to know a competent professional if the PTG doesn't?

Can you share with us how to checkup on complaints on an individual RPTs. But again this defeats the purpose of having a PTG.
Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 12:59 PM

So this is the same "tech" that submitted this invoice?

Quote:

Prepare piano for tuning and next day concert.

Set timbre (tonal spectrum)
Set sustain and depth of sound
Stabilize key frame
Set ‘after-touch’ in the keys by establishing hammer blow distance and by evening out key dip
Align and fit hammers to strings
Check evenness in regulation of the action, not being concerned about specs due to time limitations.
Voice hammers
Check out piano for unevenness in the bass sound
Full regulation of action
Key dip self-corrects and falls into place
Tune, raising pitch mostly in the mid-range which had settled the most
Voice extensively, as from the regulation the action has gained much in power and efficiency


10.0 hours total


Sub-Total $ 1,071.00
HST 128.52

Total $ 1,199.52

This is a shame because it's certainly changed my view of Brodmann and I really admire their pianos.
The only thing I can think of is that perhaps Brodmann has decided to simply go along with the owner's wishes despite all the obvious evidence that his choice in technicians is obviously mistaken.
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 01:15 PM

Originally Posted By: PianoStudent88
Dan, for pianists, how would you recommend we avoid getting into situations like this?



That is the 64 thousand dollar question…..

If I had to answer I would state do your research. For anyone you hire to work on your piano, home, boat, car, etc.

There is a professional group that gives people, such as yourself, complacency by claiming to be a standard for the industry.

At times this can be an illusory as we can all witness in this particular case.

Sparky,

Yes the Teflon thread, the Warranty Tuning Only thread, and this thread, all the same tech.


Originally Posted By: Sparky McBiff

This is a shame because it's certainly changed my view of Brodmann and I really admire their pianos.
The only thing I can think of is that perhaps Brodmann has decided to simply go along with the owner's wishes despite all the obvious evidence that his choice in technicians is obviously mistaken.


Impossible to help people who don't want my help.

Posted by: BDB

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 01:28 PM

From Brodmann's perspective, it may be that they know that the tech is incompetent, but do not wish to alienate the piano owner. If they deal directly with the customer, then they take the problem off the hands of everyone else.

There is a thin line that many of us walk in this business. If we criticize someone else's work, there is a chance that we are the ones who will not be believed.
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 01:41 PM

I’ve been told more than once by piano professionals that the piano industry is encapsulated within a small world. Most people in the business know each other or have heard of each other, whether directly or indirectly.

I would also imagine the same is true within the realm of piano technicians… many dealers are technicians, just as many dealers are trained pianist, and good ones on both accounts. I would also imagine that those who do poor/substandard work soon build a reputation for themselves, for better or worse (such as in this thread/case).

I also know from experience that when you recommend someone, quite often, the person to whom you make a recommendation holds you responsible to a certain extent. So, I guess it’s prudent to be very careful who you recommend, for anything.

FWIW, I happen to know my piano tech very well… in fact I know what he’s thinking 24/7, and he knows his limitations. laugh

Rick
Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 01:44 PM

Originally Posted By: BDB
From Brodmann's perspective, it may be that they know that the tech is incompetent, but do not wish to alienate the piano owner. If they deal directly with the customer, then they take the problem off the hands of everyone else.



Yea I think BDB is correct here.
It would be hard to imagine that Brodmann could be this blind so they're just trying to keep the actual owner happy despite the fact that he appears wanting in the smarts department.
Posted by: wouter79

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 03:13 PM

Quote:
>Brodman has stated clearly that they would like this “technician” to complete a plate screw repair.


From what you wrote I get the impression that Brodmann agreed with the customer that he sticks with customers' preferred tech. Because they know this 'tech' is making a mess of it, they have released both you and the dealer from any responsibility and "take it over".

Since they write explicitly
Quote:

3) Mr Smith has confirmed he is 100% happy with his chosen technician looking after his piano in future and he is aware that the piano needs to be maintained correctly for the warranty to be valid.


I suppose this is their nice but vague way of saying that his warranty is not valid anymore?
Posted by: Mike Carr

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 03:55 PM

Since this thread has little point other than accusing Brodmann Piano of "abandoning" a dealer, taking some kind of jab at the PTG, and in the process recommending "the manufacturer void the warranty in writing to the owner”, I’m naturally skeptical, especially after hearing only one side of the story and considering the preemptive nature and lack of evidence other than a few pictures for which credibility has not been established.

The only one who heard both sides of the story was Brodmann Piano and after hearing it and seeing all the, er, evidence presented, they felt they had no other recourse than to remove the responsibility for the warranty from the dealer and his tuner, a fairly strong message. They did not want to get in the middle of a he said, she said. Probably good advice for all.



Mike
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 04:43 PM

Sparky and Wouter79,

Thanks for the additional observations. Wouter yours is a unique perspective that had not come to mind.

Originally Posted By: BDB
From Brodmann's perspective, it may be that they know that the tech is incompetent, but do not wish to alienate the piano owner. If they deal directly with the customer, then they take the problem off the hands of everyone else.

There is a thin line that many of us walk in this business. If we criticize someone else's work, there is a chance that we are the ones who will not be believed.


This is good too.

That is why when I discovered the unusual regulation and was made aware that the invoice I was looking at were the same technician I reported what I had directly to the dealer and the manufacturer.
Posted by: PianoWorksATL

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 05:43 PM

Most manufacturers of ANY product have designated service professionals. In the absence of an on-site service center, the are usually centralized service centers. For example, we don't fix digital pianos, we connect digital service customers to Authorized service centers for the particular brand and product.

There is more than one perspective here, but both on its face and even with some speculation, it strikes me as very unusual for a manufacturer to willingly undermine a dealer even if it is an unintended consequence. Brodmann's solution is a novel one, given the customer's wants. There are no winners here. I think the only remaining issue is the $100 service turned $1200 invoice.

I have known individuals in and out of our industry that do a lot of harm without consequence or recourse. There truly is not any forum for this kind of problem. Not for doctors, not for plumbers, not for piano technicians. I feel the main reason this goes on is because few people are willing to challenge someone's livelihood for anything less than a criminal act. Our litigious society makes targets out of even the most reasonable advocates.
Posted by: Roger Ransom

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 05:57 PM

Wow, I would LOVE to 'hear' the whole story from Brodman and the technician's perspective. This certainly sounds cut and dried but I have found many times in the past that there are often several sides to most stories.

I expect neither will be posting here to let the resident Lynch mob beat them up though smile

Just sayin'
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 08:13 PM

Originally Posted By: Roger Ransom
Wow, I would LOVE to 'hear' the whole story from Brodman and the technician's perspective. This certainly sounds cut and dried but I have found many times in the past that there are often several sides to most stories.

You know, you are right, Roger... there are two sides to every story. I think sometimes we are too quick to pass judgment (myself included) without all the evidence, from both sides.

Rick
Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 09:13 PM

Originally Posted By: Rickster
Originally Posted By: Roger Ransom
Wow, I would LOVE to 'hear' the whole story from Brodman and the technician's perspective. This certainly sounds cut and dried but I have found many times in the past that there are often several sides to most stories.

You know, you are right, Roger... there are two sides to every story. I think sometimes we are too quick to pass judgment (myself included) without all the evidence, from both sides.

Rick

That is certainly true.
However after seeing the itemized invoice that the same technician provided (on another piano) it sure appears that there is something pretty questionable about the work mentality.
It was like he was just making stuff up and I certainly can't imagine a true professional listing things like that.
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 09:23 PM

I don't know if this will come across gently enough, so please pardon if this sounds a bit rough edged.

I believe that Dan is rightly upset with this situation, and he has presented good evidence of the shoddy work done by this other "tech."

But he has also taken Brodmann to task:

Quote:
I am, at present, aware of two other Brodman products both with warranty items for repair. (Seemingly, not a good mark of brand quality: P*D)

The chances of ANY technician locally here doing warranty work for a Brodman piano in the future?

Slim to no chance at all. Distaste for the corporation's attitude and tactics.


Whenever a customer comes on this board to vent about a dealer or a manufacturer the attitude of many is generally quite suspicious. Strong claims about product deficiencies or bad dealer tactics are often scrutinized quite closely. This is the "other side of the story" some have mentioned.

Yet here we have a maker whose quality control is challenged, and whose relationships with dealers and technicians is strongly criticized. Nary a peep of contest about this.

I have no dog in this fight, to be sure. I just find this curious.

Perhaps Brodmann should see this thread and respond?
Posted by: BoseEric

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/09/12 10:27 PM

I've spent most of my career working as a manufacturers rep, including years as a service manager and as such I wouldn't go near this thread.
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/10/12 09:35 AM

Not a peep from old Norbert. Seems a bit odd.
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/10/12 11:33 AM

Originally Posted By: Bob
Regarding those Bosie bass strings - I'm guessing the tech did not have the correct replacement strings, and simply put something in there on a temporary basis so the piano could be played until the correct replacements arrived. That temporary repair would be preferred over removing the hammer, or blocking the key. At least the key would function and not disrupt the pianist. Simply doing nothing would allow the hammer to wedge between two adjacent bass strings, stressing the hammer flange, and causing key touch issues. Hopefully, the repair was supposed to last just a few days, till new strings arrived.


Bob,

From page one your query;

Regarding the Bosie strings; those photos were taken July 14, 2007. The treble wire replacements are still there.

Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
Not a peep from old Norbert. Seems a bit odd.


Not really. If you read the email I posted that came directly from Brodman administration clearly Norbert and any technicians that responded have been dismissed from the responsibility of this file along with any obligation as to warranty requirements.

So I am not sure why he would respond at all.


Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/10/12 04:18 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
Not a peep from old Norbert. Seems a bit odd.



Maybe he knows that if he posted anything he would attract flak.

But it appears that even without posting anything he still seems to get attention.

Poor Norbert. eek
Posted by: CTPianotech

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 07:23 AM

Dan--It seems as though the manufacture, faced with a difficult situation, has decided to do whatever it takes to keep the customer happy---even if that means additional (and likely unjustified) expense to them. I just hope you're able to get paid for the work you've done.


Piano*Dad--Some technicians, as a matter of routine, check the tightness of the plate bolts. Unfortunately, there are some who get a bit uhh, 'over-enthusiastic' when tightening these bolts. Without having personally checked the piano out before and after, it's difficult to say if the stripped out bolt is something that happened during manufacturing process, or after...
Posted by: Piano*Dad

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 08:32 AM

Originally Posted By: CTPianotech
Dan--It seems as though the manufacture, faced with a difficult situation, has decided to do whatever it takes to keep the customer happy---even if that means additional (and likely unjustified) expense to them. I just hope you're able to get paid for the work you've done.


Piano*Dad--Some technicians, as a matter of routine, check the tightness of the plate bolts. Unfortunately, there are some who get a bit uhh, 'over-enthusiastic' when tightening these bolts. Without having personally checked the piano out before and after, it's difficult to say if the stripped out bolt is something that happened during manufacturing process, or after...



I agree with both of your observations.

What I am pointing out is that Dan has said things that someone like me (a completely neutral and disinterested party) easily sees as disparaging remarks about the quality of Brodmann products and about their management.

When a customer makes comments of a similar sort about any particular maker, many people here at PW get all over them like the proverbial cheap suit.

Dan says he is aware of even more warranty issues on Brodmann pianos. One does not usually point out stuff like that (without evidence) unless one is venting, and that sort of venting usually gets a very chilly response from the ownership here, since manufacturers have a tendency to issue warnings about liability for .... ah, misstatement.

The implication of Dan's posting seems to be that Brodmann either doesn't believe him, or that Brodmann thinks that he and the unnamed (but probably Vancouver-located) dealer are somehow to blame for these repair problems.

Your explanation about Brodmann's thinking is much more likely, and much less inflammatory.

If you want to see inflammatory, just reread the thread title.
Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 12:28 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad

What I am pointing out is that Dan has said things that someone like me (a completely neutral and disinterested party) easily sees as disparaging remarks about the quality of Brodmann products and about their management.


Simply pointing out that it may now be difficult to get a local tech to deal with a few warranty issues with a few Brodmann pianos is hardly "disparaging remarks" in my opinion.

Everyone is pretty aware that it is not that uncommon among many brands that sometimes they require minor details to be attended to with a new piano.


Quote:
The implication of Dan's posting seems to be that Brodmann either doesn't believe him, or that Brodmann thinks that he and the unnamed (but probably Vancouver-located) dealer are somehow to blame for these repair problems.

If you want to see inflammatory, just reread the thread title.


Yes it does seem that way but I think many of us would also feel the same way because it would be hard to not take it personally as a personal affront when a company appears to support an incompetent tech when in fact all they are doing is just trying to bend to the wishes of the obviously misguided customer.


I think Brodmann did perhaps drop the ball in explaining their decision to the dealer and that they could have told him that everything the dealer did was proper but in order to make peace and for good public relations they have done what the customer wanted.

Sometimes I think it may be a bit of a problem at times with a few of the Chinese manufacturers (Hailun comes to mind) with regards to their relations with their dealer support.
I suspect that something like that might have to do with a recent change in Toronto with regards to Hailun dealer support.

Possibly their pianos building skills are improving at a faster rate than their dealer relation skills.

But I'm just an outsider thinking aloud so nobody should really put much stock into my musings.

(I think Brodmann pianos are outstanding).
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 01:05 PM

Originally Posted By: Piano*Dad
I agree with both of your observations.

What I am pointing out is that Dan has said things that someone like me (a completely neutral and disinterested party) easily sees as disparaging remarks about the quality of Brodmann products and about their management.

When a customer makes comments of a similar sort about any particular maker, many people here at PW get all over them like the proverbial cheap suit.

Dan says he is aware of even more warranty issues on Brodmann pianos. One does not usually point out stuff like that (without evidence) unless one is venting, and that sort of venting usually gets a very chilly response from the ownership here, since manufacturers have a tendency to issue warnings about liability for .... ah, misstatement.

The implication of Dan's posting seems to be that Brodmann either doesn't believe him, or that Brodmann thinks that he and the unnamed (but probably Vancouver-located) dealer are somehow to blame for these repair problems.

Your explanation about Brodmann's thinking is much more likely, and much less inflammatory.

If you want to see inflammatory, just reread the thread title.

Piano*Dad, you make some very good points in your comments.

I might add, as a reminder to everyone here, we, as individuals, are responsible for what we write here on the forums, and not Piano World. This is plainly stated in the forum policies and rules.

Also, I think that the professionals here may be a little more outspoken or passionate about certain things they encounter in their daily experiences in the real world because it may affect their livelihoods or their reputations.

I too, would welcome more responses from industry professionals on the issues brought up in this thread.

In regards to the title of the thread, I’m not so sure the manufacturer has actually abandoned the dealer in this case… they simply allowed the piano owner to have their way in this particular situation in order to keep them happy.

Rick
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 03:41 PM

The entire mess is easily understood if one reads all of the threads about this….

The instrument had a small warranty issue.

The dealer asked me if I could assist.

I asked the dealer to get instruction from the factory on the repair so as to cooperate with the warranty requirements from the manufacturer.

The factory sent specific instructions for repair.

I followed those instructions to the letter.

The owner’s technician, who had no verbal or written authorization to complete any warranty work on the piano, tampered with, or sabotaged the repair, then complained directly to the manufacturer unknown to anyone else.

The dealer was contacted and he in turn contacted me.

Along with another technician we all attended the owner’s home.

The owner claimed in front of the five people in attendance that the repair was failing. When asked how he came to know that the reply was failing he admitted …” we tested the repair”
This is deliberate and intentional tampering with a warranty approved repair....

The only way to test a screw repair is by over tightening therefore stripping the screw again….

The owner’s technician was asked a specific question “out of more than twenty screws in the plate on this model how did you come to be aware of one particular screw being loose originally?”
The only way would be to attempt to tighten them…..

In front of five people this technician states…. “I heard something in the tuning.”

Both myself and the other attending technician there at dealer request were dumbfounded.

Brodman is sent all details and two reports; one from me, one for the other technician.

Brodman goes with the owner and the owner’s technician, dismisses dealer and the two technicians one being myself.
Two days later Brodman calls the dealer with warranty problems on another Brodman instrument.

I know of another one with the identical developing problem as the above mentioned one.

Unlikely to have any technicians in Vancouver with a desire to assist.

This entire matter has come about because of a clearly unqualified technician doing sub- par work that Brodman has decided to go with. The photos I have shown of this technicians work speak for themselves.

The other real kicker? This one is amazing. This technician is a long time member of the Piano Technicians Guild, in fact an RPT.
Numerous other members of this local chapter have know about this kind of work going on, all of them have photos and documentation going back more than a decade and possibly more than two decades.

What have they done about it?

Nothing.





Posted by: Jerry Groot RPT

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 04:40 PM

I cannot help but wonder, if the entire point of posting these "three separate threads on this same issue" is just an excuse to poke, jab demean etc., at a manufacture, the PTG and RPT's in general. Perhaps it is time to just close it down....

What good can become of these derogatory statements? We have bad people in every profession there is. To use this forum as a means to state that this person was an RPT more than once is an intentional excuse to degrade the PTG and RPT in general in my opinion. Otherwise, why mention it? Have any one of us mentioned that we ran across such and such a piano that was butchered by a non RPT? That happens too you know... What good would that do? It is expected, to run across lousy work at some time or another from all professions.

Just because a person is a member of something, like MPT or AMA for example, does not ensure that they are all going to be good, honest professionals who will do their best work at all times. Frankly, I don't see the need for any of this myself.

As I have said elsewhere, there are good tuners and there are lousy tuners. There are good doctors and lousy doctors. There are good lawyers and lousy lawyers. There are good plumbers and bad plumbers... Do we all come in here to point out that this lawyer was a member of such and such group just to point that out?
Posted by: daifanshi

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:06 PM

I thought the whole point of having "RPT" after a name was to assure the customer that an above standard level of quality and service would be provided. If that particular technician has somehow stayed under the radar for so long then that means there was a major failure somewhere. Or maybe that particular chapter of the PTG has become so badly politicized that they are unable/unwilling to police their own. Wouldn't be the first time that's happened to a trade group. Who knows?

Piano servicing is pretty unregulated from what I can tell, and as a customer I want somebody to tell me of a case where being an RPT might not be "all that". Makes me more careful when I need to pick a new one and to even be cautious when I see "RPT". So if all this is true, can somebody tell me what seeing "RPT" gives me as a customer? Or is this specific case so unusual?
Posted by: PianoStudent88

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:15 PM

Does the PTG have procedures for disciplining or correcting (don't know if those are the right words) members or RPTs who do shoddy work?
Posted by: Rickster

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:18 PM

Okay, folks, I see this thread starting to get a little out of hand… maybe a lot out of hand.

Dan, I have enormous respect for you… you have helped me with my piano tech training as a distance mentor on numerous occasions; you along with a few other professional techicians here.

But, in all honesty, Jerry has a point… there are hacks in all professions and some do fall through the cracks in the competency checks and balances area.

You state your case clearly and concisely, and very articulately, I might add.

To be honest, I don’t know what the answer to this dilemma is or if there is an answer or resolution to be reached. Have you contacted the PTG and talked to anyone there about this?

Also, for the record, we have received a few moderator complaints about this thread, mostly from RPT members, complaining that you have some sort of vendetta against the RPT’s Guild, and that your threads on this issue are aimed more toward the PTG than the other tech said to be doing sub-standard work or the owner of the piano in question or the manufacturer.

Again, I have a lot of respect for you and it is not my place to judge your motives… you have not really named names or revealed the rogue tech or the dealer, for which I think you are very wise. You have revealed the brand/manufacturer, and the fact that the tech in question is said to be a member of the PTG; and, I’m not sure what to think about that…

I’m not sure what to say at this point or where this thread might be headed. You state your case well, and with some documented evidence; but the other side is not represented at all, at least that I can tell.

Having read this thread in its entirety, and your other thread on the technician’s forum, I’m inclined to agree with Sam Bennett… in our own state, Georgia, many professional organizations are not quick to issue punitive action or sanctions against a professional member of a guild or association without extensive examination, investigation and more investigation, by the officials of that organization. And, this type of investigation is usually prompted by consumer complaints and initiated through the various consumer advocate organizations such as the BBB or the Governor's office of consumer affairs. Some professions and skilled trades are regulated by the state and complaints are usually handled by the state governing body such the state licensing boards.

I work in the field of HVACR (Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration) and hold all the appropriate professional licenses, certifications and academic degrees. I have seen certain licensed HVACR contractors contact the state licensing board to complain or report other licensed contractors, or contractors working without the appropriate licenses or certifications, for sub-standard work or for not having the appropriate licenses or certifications. The state licensing board can issue punitive actions, license suspensions, and even heavy monetary fines for sub-standard work or violation of state laws governing the HVACR industry in our state. Also, the licensing laws and regulations for HVACR vary from state to state.

With that said, there are still many HVACR hacks and wannabes, and some who hold the appropriate licenses and certifications, who are taking consumers for a ride by doing substandard work and offering expensive repairs or services that are not needed, or, in essence, doing more harm than good.. It is almost impossible to stop completely.

However, this is different for piano technicians, because there is no state or national mandate for professional licensing or requirements for belonging to any organization like the PTG (that I am aware of). For the piano industry it is more or less a preference or self imposed rule as to whether or not dealers or manufacturer require membership in any professional organization.

Hence, here lies the dilemma… the tech in question is said to be a member of the PTG, yet is accused of doing substandard or sloppy work by a highly respected and reputable non-RPT.

Gee… I don’t know… where does this all end?

Rick
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:18 PM



Originally Posted By: Jerry Groot RPT
I cannot help but wonder, if the entire point of posting these "three separate threads on this same issue" is just an excuse to poke, jab demean etc., at a manufacture, the PTG and RPT's in general. Perhaps it is time to just close it down....


Sure thing that will make it all better...not deal with any of it.

Exactly the attitude the chapter here has had for more than a decade.

Jerry,

I didn’t want this situation to be the way it is. Yes there are bad apples in every group. Not weeding them out creates problems such as this……

Something else to consider. This whole thing was dropped on my desk when Ryan Sowers started his “perception of PTG from non-members” thread a couple of weeks ago.

I intentionally did not post this to that thread because I did not want it to seem like a vendetta.
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:25 PM

Rickster,
I completely understand your position in the matter. Do what you think is best. The whole story is out for members to form their own opinions. I have nothing further to add.

I have enough evidence to make my case on several fronts. All corroborated and substantiated by many involved.
Posted by: Jerry Groot RPT

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:35 PM

Dan,

It appeared to me that it was turning into a vendetta of sorts...

I would strongly suggest contacting the PTG home office directly in Canada as they would have to be the ones to deal with it. Not the chapter. We can do nothing about it here in the USA that I know of.

As we all know, not all tuners are bad, members or non members. What I do not like and I'm sure I am not the only one, is seeing the PTG as a whole mentioned in a negative way for obvious reasons.

I found Ryan's thread quite interesting myself. All of the answers posted there were informative I thought. smile
Posted by: Sparky McBiff

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:51 PM

I had the impression that the whole point of this thread was mainly the issue that Brodmann has acted questionably by meekly siding with the owner who insists on using an obviously inept technician.

The fact that he tech in question just happens to be an RPT is mentioned but I don't see it as being the focal point of the issue here.

We all know that there are bad people in every profession so I don't think everyone should go off on a tangent about the RPT thing since the MAIN POINT seems to be that Brodmann's actions have thrown a wrench into the workings of manufacturer/dealer relations in a relatively small market.

(It appears they are as adept at dealer relations as they are at making a useful website. Which is badly.) shocked

At least that's the way I'm seeing it.
Posted by: master88er

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 05:58 PM

Well, with some sense of dread, I'll jump in f

The PTG website states: "A Registered Piano Technician (RPT) has passed a series of rigorous examinations on the maintenance, repair, and tuning of pianos. Only RPTs are authorized by The Piano Technicians Guild to display the logo containing the words “Registered Piano Technician”."

Additionally, I believe there is a "code of ethics" that RPT Techs are "suppposed" to subscribe to. In my 40 years of being in the piano business as a tuner and retailer, I have only known of ONE person who ever was admonished and removed from membership of the PTG, and that was in the SF Chapter. In that particular case, there had been egregious behavior for YEARS before such a roar went up that the organization had to do something or lose all credibility in our market - which I think is the point here.

I happen to have been in on this particular problem from the beginning, acting as a soundboard to the retailer - since we both carry the Brodmann line. In my NOT so humble opinion, the main mistake by the retailer was in letting the customer's technician, who the retailer had known previously and had known was "problematic," work on the instrument. Sometimes, IMHO, customers have to be protected against themselves. I know, I know, this often gets you a reputation for being difficult but better that than lawsuits. crazy

However, once the deed was done, IMHO the manufacturer should have firmly backed the dealer and the dealers trusted technicians in not only remedying the problem but also in ongoing service of the piano, for a very simple and logical reason; warranty of fitness.

I am not sure about the area where this piano was sold, but in California, there is a "warranty of fitness" which basically, as I understand it help means that a product must be fit to perform for the purposes it was sold, i.e. playing the piano. Obviously, the consumer will not sue the manufacturer but rather the dealer (who is local) if an issue arises. Even though the manufacturer "officially let the dealer off the hook" for the service on this piano, the dealer still has exposure. IMHO, the manufacturer should stand by the dealer not only for this very important reason, but also the fact that the dealer is its customer. I can understand a manufacturer cancelling a sub-par dealer who does not service their pianos properly and therefore cancelling the relationship, but that is NOT the case here. In fact, I know personally that the manufacturer is soliciting the dealer to buy more product in a large quantity. To me, if I were the dealer, I wouldn't even consider another order.

Most manufacturers know which of their dealers to trust. For example, with one manufacturer that we represented for 28 years, we placed only two warranty claims with them. It wasn't because we never had service issues with their product, but I just don't believe in "nickel and diming" manufacturers over small items. This works to my benefit because when I do make a call or claim, the manufacturers, for the most part, respond positively and immediately because they know I wouldn't bother them with a minor problem. The dealer in question has a very good reputation for service, and hires only quality technicians and the manufacturer should be standing clearly beside him, which they aren't.

One way the manufacturer COULD have solved the issue was to send a "factory technician" to the customer's home to examine the piano and the repairs and alterations. This should give the customer a renewed sense of confidence in the brand, and it would benefit the dealer if the customer's technician is the culprit (which I fully believe he is). This would also cement good feelings between the dealer and the manufacturer, and as an outside party it would be easier for the manufacturer to criticize the work of a local technician without repercussion. Unfortunately, this didn't transpire.

To me, the local PTG Chapter now has the ball in THEIR court. They can prove their worth by assembling a jury of approved examiners to look over the evidence and make a recommendation. Anything less would give credence to those who put little to no value on the RPT designation in the area of this chapter's influence.
Posted by: Rod Verhnjak

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 06:36 PM

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos


The other real kicker? This one is amazing. This technician is a long time member of the Piano Technicians Guild, in fact an RPT.
Numerous other members of this local chapter have know about this kind of work going on, all of them have photos and documentation going back more than a decade and possibly more than two decades.

What have they done about it?

Nothing.




Originally Posted By: master88er
To me, the local PTG Chapter now has the ball in THEIR court. They can prove their worth by assembling a jury of approved examiners to look over the evidence and make a recommendation. Anything less would give credence to those who put little to no value on the RPT designation in the area of this chapter's influence.




Originally Posted By: Jerry Groot RPT
I would strongly suggest contacting the PTG home office directly in Canada as they would have to be the ones to deal with it. Not the chapter. We can do nothing about it here in the USA that I know of.


I did not want to go here but I must. I knew this was going to happen and the PTG would come up. I saw the writing on the wall as I read the "more to the story" stuff.

We do not have a PTG home office in Canada. The local chapter has no way of dealing with members. Problems with any member has to be dealt with by the complainants and the home office in the U.S.

Blaming the local chapter is not justified for what has happened here.




Posted by: kpembrook

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 07:40 PM

Originally Posted By: Sparky McBiff
I had the impression that the whole point of this thread was mainly the issue that Brodmann has acted questionably by meekly siding with the owner who insists on using an obviously inept technician.

The fact that he tech in question just happens to be an RPT is mentioned but I don't see it as being the focal point of the issue here.

We all know that there are bad people in every profession so I don't think everyone should go off on a tangent about the RPT thing since the MAIN POINT seems to be that Brodmann's actions have thrown a wrench into the workings of manufacturer/dealer relations in a relatively small market.

(It appears they are as adept at dealer relations as they are at making a useful website. Which is badly.) shocked

At least that's the way I'm seeing it.


+1
Posted by: kpembrook

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 07:44 PM

Originally Posted By: master88er
Well, with some sense of dread, I'll jump in f

The PTG website states: "A Registered Piano Technician (RPT) has passed a series of rigorous examinations on the maintenance, repair, and tuning of pianos. Only RPTs are authorized by The Piano Technicians Guild to display the logo containing the words “Registered Piano Technician”."

Additionally, I believe there is a "code of ethics" that RPT Techs are "suppposed" to subscribe to. In my 40 years of being in the piano business as a tuner and retailer, I have only known of ONE person who ever was admonished and removed from membership of the PTG, and that was in the SF Chapter. In that particular case, there had been egregious behavior for YEARS before such a roar went up that the organization had to do something or lose all credibility in our market - which I think is the point here.

I happen to have been in on this particular problem from the beginning, acting as a soundboard to the retailer - since we both carry the Brodmann line. In my NOT so humble opinion, the main mistake by the retailer was in letting the customer's technician, who the retailer had known previously and had known was "problematic," work on the instrument. Sometimes, IMHO, customers have to be protected against themselves. I know, I know, this often gets you a reputation for being difficult but better that than lawsuits. crazy

However, once the deed was done, IMHO the manufacturer should have firmly backed the dealer and the dealers trusted technicians in not only remedying the problem but also in ongoing service of the piano, for a very simple and logical reason; warranty of fitness.

I am not sure about the area where this piano was sold, but in California, there is a "warranty of fitness" which basically, as I understand it help means that a product must be fit to perform for the purposes it was sold, i.e. playing the piano. Obviously, the consumer will not sue the manufacturer but rather the dealer (who is local) if an issue arises. Even though the manufacturer "officially let the dealer off the hook" for the service on this piano, the dealer still has exposure. IMHO, the manufacturer should stand by the dealer not only for this very important reason, but also the fact that the dealer is its customer. I can understand a manufacturer cancelling a sub-par dealer who does not service their pianos properly and therefore cancelling the relationship, but that is NOT the case here. In fact, I know personally that the manufacturer is soliciting the dealer to buy more product in a large quantity. To me, if I were the dealer, I wouldn't even consider another order.

Most manufacturers know which of their dealers to trust. For example, with one manufacturer that we represented for 28 years, we placed only two warranty claims with them. It wasn't because we never had service issues with their product, but I just don't believe in "nickel and diming" manufacturers over small items. This works to my benefit because when I do make a call or claim, the manufacturers, for the most part, respond positively and immediately because they know I wouldn't bother them with a minor problem. The dealer in question has a very good reputation for service, and hires only quality technicians and the manufacturer should be standing clearly beside him, which they aren't.

One way the manufacturer COULD have solved the issue was to send a "factory technician" to the customer's home to examine the piano and the repairs and alterations. This should give the customer a renewed sense of confidence in the brand, and it would benefit the dealer if the customer's technician is the culprit (which I fully believe he is). This would also cement good feelings between the dealer and the manufacturer, and as an outside party it would be easier for the manufacturer to criticize the work of a local technician without repercussion. Unfortunately, this didn't transpire.

To me, the local PTG Chapter now has the ball in THEIR court. They can prove their worth by assembling a jury of approved examiners to look over the evidence and make a recommendation. Anything less would give credence to those who put little to no value on the RPT designation in the area of this chapter's influence.


As a piano technician and former piano dealer, I think this assessment is spot on.
Posted by: kpembrook

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 07:48 PM

Quote:
Blaming the local chapter is not justified for what has happened here.


You are correct that PTG headquarters is the venue to be contacted. However, the chapter can engage the national office. There is nothing to stop them from making their Regional Vice President and the home office aware of the situation.

An action against a PTG member has to be brought by somebody -- and they could just as well be that someone.
Posted by: Kurtmen

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 08:35 PM

Quote:
Brodman goes with the owner and the owner’s technician, dismisses dealer and the two technicians one being myself.


Maybe I'm missing the point here but in my opinion; that is a smart decision by Brodmann. That will make the customer happy because the customer trusts his own technician. Now the customer's technician has all the responsibility and the dealer doesn't need to deal with the headache after they made all possible efforts to solve the problem.
It is likely that after all the customer will be happy and wouldn't badmouth Brodmann or the dealer since everybody made an effort to help them.

Complaining about the customer choosing *that* bad-technician, it reminds me of the guy asking why is she with that jerk? People like and trust whoever they want to like and trust regardless if it makes sense or not.
It doesn't matter if he is a good or bad technician the customer trusts him therefore is likely they'll be happy with his work. The technician will get pay by the manufacturer therefore he'll be happy as well.
Make sure you get pay for your time and move on. If Brodmann doesn't pay you the dealer should compensate you.



Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 08:36 PM

Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Quote:
Blaming the local chapter is not justified for what has happened here.


You are correct that PTG headquarters is the venue to be contacted. However, the chapter can engage the national office. There is nothing to stop them from making their Regional Vice President and the home office aware of the situation.

An action against a PTG member has to be brought by somebody -- and they could just as well be that someone.


Local chapter members have not seen fit to write a formal letter of complaint outlining their concerns about this technicians work, signed by all concerned members who have photos and documentation and sent the Regional Vice President.

I had the Regional Vice here for three hours last Thursday going over documents, photos and the invoice.

I am trying to do the right thing instead of nothing.
Posted by: Rod Verhnjak

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 08:45 PM

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos
Originally Posted By: kpembrook
Quote:
Blaming the local chapter is not justified for what has happened here.


You are correct that PTG headquarters is the venue to be contacted. However, the chapter can engage the national office. There is nothing to stop them from making their Regional Vice President and the home office aware of the situation.

An action against a PTG member has to be brought by somebody -- and they could just as well be that someone.


Local chapter members have not seen fit to write a formal letter of complaint outlining their concerns about this technicians work, signed by all concerned members who have photos and documentation and sent the Regional Vice President.

I had the Regional Vice here for three hours last Thursday going over documents, photos and the invoice.

I am trying to do the right thing instead of nothing.


And as you being the complainant you're doing the correct procedure as I understand it.
Posted by: MiddleAgedProdigy

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 09:29 PM

Originally Posted By: Silverwood Pianos

Local chapter members have not seen fit to write a formal letter of complaint outlining their concerns about this technicians work, signed by all concerned members who have photos and documentation and sent the Regional Vice President.


I don't understand. They have *not* seen fit or they have seen fit to write this letter.

I'm sure this wasn't your intention, but the end result is that a lot of us now have a lot less respect for RPTs.

If what you say is correct, there are hacks in their group and they are not willing to root them out.
Posted by: Jerry Groot RPT

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 09:46 PM

I didn't realize that Rod. Thanks for the clarification on that.

Now that I read Russell's post, I remembered a while back that our local chapter had also worked on having an RPT kicked out for various reasons. We did get that person removed too. I'd forgotten all about it. That was quite a number of years ago now and took quite a bit of time going through all of the hoops.

I wouldn't have less respect for RPT's just because of that one. That's like saying, I have less respect for all doctor's because of one crummy one. I don't have less respect for non RPT's just because I find one that does lousy work. That wouldn't be fair to the rest of them. We all work hard to achieve what we achieve in the field of piano technology and build up our own reputations, good or bad.

There are roads to take to have a person removed. It takes time as the RVP will have to deal not only with home office but, with this particular RPT too, getting all sides of the story which again, takes time. Sort of like going to court in a way...

It sounds like Dan from his last post, is on the right one in dealing the the RVP.
Posted by: accordeur

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 10:40 PM

I do not believe this thread is about professional organizations.

This thread is about a frustrated and helpless technician. With reason.

Many new manufacturers of pianos have not understood the importance of a service department.

A person, preferably knowledgable in piano parts and mechanisms, even better a well paid tech, to answer queries.

The dealer at this point must be very annoyed, with reason.

The customer is ignorant, having been fed a lot of bs.

If I was the manufacturer, I would tell my customer, (the dealer) that I would back him. Just get the piano back, and let somebody else deal with this customer. The manufacturer, if the dealer has been diligent, should back up the dealer.

The customer is not always right.
Posted by: Bob

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/11/12 11:22 PM

Even if the customer is wrong......they are right.

This RPT - non PTG member feud is getting old. We should all put our efforts into promoting the piano instead.
Posted by: kpembrook

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/12/12 01:18 AM

Originally Posted By: accordeur
I do not believe this thread is about professional organizations.

This thread is about a frustrated and helpless technician. With reason.

Many new manufacturers of pianos have not understood the importance of a service department.

A person, preferably knowledgable in piano parts and mechanisms, even better a well paid tech, to answer queries.

The dealer at this point must be very annoyed, with reason.

The customer is ignorant, having been fed a lot of bs.

If I was the manufacturer, I would tell my customer, (the dealer) that I would back him. Just get the piano back, and let somebody else deal with this customer. The manufacturer, if the dealer has been diligent, should back up the dealer.

The customer is not always right.



You are mostly right, but it's one of those love triangle things . . .

The dealer is the manufacturer's true customer. Yet the warranty specifies a responsibility between the manufacturer and the dealer's customer, the end owner of the instrument.

As with love triangles, it can get complicated. . .
Posted by: Silverwood Pianos

Re: Manufacturer Abandons Dealer over Warranty Issue - 04/12/12 11:17 AM


Originally Posted By: Rod Verhnjak
And as you being the complainant you're doing the correct procedure as I understand it.


For this current complaint Rod, yes, I am attempting to do the correct thing. I am discovering to my surprise as I go, that previous examples of this technicians going back more than a decade have not been dealt with by chapter members; Members who clearly have very good examples of sub-standard work.

I understand there is evidence locally that this technician messed up some instruments you and your late father rebuilt more than a decade ago.

The Bosie photos were taken 5 years ago on July 14 2007. We are all reasonable people here. I don’t believe anyone can look at these photos and see satisfactory work completed.

Technical expertise

My observation to the local chapter members is really a question; how much is enough before all concerned members stand up and say “excuse us but this is not right”?
Without this technician being scrutinized by his peers, this is the result we have today.

Originally Posted By: MiddleAgedProdigy

I don't understand. They have *not* seen fit or they have seen fit to write this letter.
I'm sure this wasn't your intention, but the end result is that a lot of us now have a lot less respect for RPTs.
If what you say is correct, there are hacks in their group and they are not willing to root them out.


Apparently, local members are not willing to root out the hacks, as I have discovered. I have found evidence of this kind of work by this fellow going back more than a decade. This current issue is only 2 weeks old. I am working on this myself and I am not a member of anything except the human race.

Jean and Bob,

There is no one angry. There is no vendetta. There is no member versus non-member feud. As Russell Kassman appropriately stated on the previous page in an excellent posting this kind of thing hurts the industry for all of us. Locally, this hurts technicians of all walks of life, PTG member or non-member.

I am making observations for public discussion. Is this not the function of a forum, to debate, to disagree respectfully, to come to a resolution of some sort, or agree to disagree?
I think we can all agree to a certain extent that the manufacturer did not support the proper people in this equation. I fully understand there are some who would not agree with this assessment.

I have separated this technicians various claims on his invoice and had them peer-reviewed by the tech forum. I revealed each aspect of his claims separately in separate threads so as to have each issue dealt with individually.

I intentionally did not link them together so that members commenting about one thread were not influenced by the other.
I linked all of them together here in this thread.

Synopsis:

The Teflon thread clearly resulted in his claims being dismissed by a variety of technicians who have no vested interest in the outcome of this case. There is clear misrepresentation on the invoice with a direct accusation that this dealer is sending out sold instruments to unsuspecting clients with cancer-causing agents inside.

These claims have not been taken lightly by industry professionals, in the piano industry and in the chemical industry.

The Warranty tuning thread had his claims of full regulation and the supporting photos dismissed, and in some cases mocked and ridiculed. This was done by a variety of technicians some of which are PTG members and some which are not. The majority agreed that this was not correct by any standard.

The invoice is a very clear case of fraud or attempted fraud. There is the claim of full regulation completed. The photos I took clearly show that this is not the truth.

Regulation

This person was billing for work not completed or in some cases not done at all. On-going ethics violations must be dealt with immediately or they will just continue year after year.

I never had a desire for this to be the way it is. I agreed to complete a small insignificant warranty repair. I did not agree to have this dumped on my desk. But because it has been, as a professional person I am obligated to see it through.

I have posted all of this here on PianoWorld. All members will have their own interpretation as to why I did so.

A useless exercise would be to try to convince them of my motivations for posting. This was my first, and last, encounter with this manufacturer and this technician. I would not want to re-visit a situation such as this again. I do not believe any of us would want this in their lives.

So I am doing what I can to rid the industry of someone who is clearly damaging relations and reputations locally with colleagues, clients, and dealers.

Anyone locally want to stand with me?