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Not really

I went to your other link and I think you said it best: "Am I expecting too much from their Customer Service? What would be an accepted window of response for this kind of inquiry?"

It sounds like it's your only ride so the frustration of not being able to ride is apparent although 850 miles on a 2006 frame is pretty low although I'm sure there are extenuating circumstances that we all suffer from like work, family, etc.

I would have taken it in person to the shop I bought it from, if practical, and let them hassle with Time. You say you're Time's customer but in reality, that's indirect and your dealer has the direct relationship. If you couldn't make it to the dealer in person, I would have called the dealer and Time by phone. Email's great but if I have to get something done or action taken, I pick up the phone, both personally and at work.

I think your expectation from their customer service is what you personally would like and you yourself would deliver. My experience is that 1 week for a complete response, not necessarily resolution, is reasonable.

I've dealt with Time in the past for warranty and service, before and after they established Time Sport USA, and they've been pretty good in resolving issues completely.

gs3exec said:
I originally posted this thread at the "other manufacturers" forum. Anyone else had a similar experience with TIME?

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?p=2097882#post2097882
 

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Le Misérable
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gs3exec said:
I originally posted this thread at the "other manufacturers" forum. Anyone else had a similar experience with TIME?

http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?p=2097882#post2097882
Hey don't forget you're dealing with a French company here, even if it is Time USA that you deal with directly:). No French (or Italian) company or branch thereof is going to have 'response time' high on their priority list...that's just not in the mentality of customer relations over here.

In any case, when it comes to warranty issues you need to be REALLY nice, at least until you have good reason to start throwing around words like 'disappointed' and 'had no choice but to throw you under the bus on an internet forum' before any service has been done. Ultimately, it's you who need them to perform a service, even if in theory you have a right to this service. I agree that they have no business getting snippy with you like they did, but you've got remember that, from your end, all that matters is a successful outcome, not how you get there, and little personal affronts shouldn't get in the way.

For the record, I live just up the road from Time's headquarters and I hear tons of stories about customer service and they're almost all good, if a bit slow sometimes. As far as Time USA goes I only know what I read on the internet, but again, most of the stories say they are honest and stick to the rules they set out. Their reputation here is certainly way better than any of the big Italian names...but then I know way more French riders than Italian, so take that with a grain of salt. Generally speaking, IME getting Italian companies to do anything is challenging, but I'm sure there many exceptions to that rule.

Also for the record, in the only thread I know of on this site that deals with this directly--the one you found--the poster was WAY out of line and had no business trashing Time USA in that situation.

But alas you are the one without a bike for awhile, condolences for that...but you'll get it back faster if you get back on good terms with the people with whom you are communicating. Good luck!

One last thought: is it possible to communicate by phone instead of waiting for emails? I try and get away from email as soon as these sorts of relationships get touchy, because it's too easy to 1) misunderstand, and 2) type something that you would never say out loud.
 

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I read through the original post. I think Time USA has treated you well and your expectations are unreasonable. I think 1 week between e-mail updates in a matter like this the norm. For what it's worth, I neither own a Time frame nor do I have any relation to the company.

Also, stop complaining about your expenses regarding assembly, disassembly, and shipping in this matter. Almost all warranties express that these costs are the responsibility of the consumer, so this should not be a surprise.

In the future, you should consider how the the quality of the warranty program when choosing a frame. What I'm trying to say is you'll find dealing with American carbon bike companies such as Serotta and Calfee much more efficient and responsive in regard to warranty claims. Sure, Time has a U.S. repair depot, but you're still subject to cultural business model differences. It's one reason you pay more for U.S. frames, but it's worth it.
 

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Peter P. said:
[...] It's one reason you pay more for U.S. frames, but it's worth it.
Is that true? I've been out of the US market for a while now, but last time I shopped there European 'boutique' brands like Time and Look were categorically more expensive than their US counterparts when purchased in the US, while the opposite is true here (i.e. the local brands, considered luxury models in the US, are relatively affordable, while something like a Trek Modane is 25-50% more expensive).

Sorry if that's a bit off topic but I'm curious to know...
 

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Depends on the currency exchange rate.
 

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Blue CheeseHead said:
I just forwarded this thread to my nephew who is the Time rep in Nor Cal. I asked him to forward it to the appropriate rep. Perhaps it will help.
Consider undoing that if you can— it may have the opposite effect of the one intended. Some companies are a bit touchy about bad press in a public forum.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Bluecheesehead - TIME is already aware of this posting as I already noted it on one of my e-mails. I do appreciate the gesture and want to give you an update in regards to my situation. Today was actually an eye-opener for me as I finally followed the advise of a lot of the folks who responded to this posting - I brought the frame to the dealer in Fountain Valley who originally sold me the bike.

I should have done this in the first place and avoided the frustrations.:mad2: I thought it was the same as handling warranty issues with a retail company........after 90 days..........contact Manufacturer :idea:

I had a very positive experience with the Manager who handled this issue as he was very helpful and very customer service oriented. He understood my situation and apologized for what I've been through, but also explained in two words why it was not a good idea to deal with the Manufacturers directly - FRAUDULENT CLAIMS. Having the dealer (the professionals) personally assess the defect and make the recommendations makes the process quicker.

I now have options and look forward to a positive outcome from the dealer. I will keep you posted.
 

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gs3exec said:
Bluecheesehead - TIME is already aware of this posting as I already noted it on one of my e-mails. I do appreciate the gesture and want to give you an update in regards to my situation. Today was actually an eye-opener for me as I finally followed the advise of a lot of the folks who responded to this posting - I brought the frame to the dealer in Fountain Valley who originally sold me the bike.

I should have done this in the first place and avoided the frustrations.:mad2: I thought it was the same as handling warranty issues with a retail company........after 90 days..........contact Manufacturer :idea:

I had a very positive experience with the Manager who handled this issue as he was very helpful and very customer service oriented. He understood my situation and apologized for what I've been through, but also explained in two words why it was not a good idea to deal with the Manufacturers directly - FRAUDULENT CLAIMS. Having the dealer (the professionals) personally assess the defect and make the recommendations makes the process quicker.

I now have options and look forward to a positive outcome from the dealer. I will keep you posted.

This sounds like a very sensible approach. Your dealer is your best advocate. Good luck.
 

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wim said:
Consider undoing that if you can— it may have the opposite effect of the one intended. Some companies are a bit touchy about bad press in a public forum.
We have been following both threads from the start. The customer let us know on Monday that he had posted on a forum. Here are his exact words cut and pasted from his e-mail:

" I had no recourse but to post and inquire about my situation at a Bike Forum this afternoon."

This is after he received an initial reply within a hour (on Thursday am 4/2/09) and then receiving a follow up e-mail less than 3 business days later (Monday 4/6/09)

Even after he posted the first thread on RBR, we still offered to have him drop off the frame at a shop and our rep would pick it up and deliver it straight to the service center, trying to save the customer the shipping expense and speed up the process.

At the Time Sport USA office we currently have 2 full time employees and 2 half time (shipping and accounting) we do not have enough staff to monitor and answer repetitive e-mails from the same customer, especially when he was informed that we would get back to him once we knew our Service Centers schedule.
 

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TIMESPORTUSA said:
We have been following both threads from the start.
Good to hear that. The days when anyone can say anything on the internet about a company and enjoy automatic impunity are thankfully numbered.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Good that we get to see both sides of this issue.:thumbsup:

For the record, I don't need to cut and paste any statements made in regards to this issue to back-up my postings. I have documented evidence (time and date) on all of the communications made between TIME and myself since day one, and don't see any reason to prolong this thread.

Let's cut to the chase and find out from TIME, what their course of action is in regards to this issue.

You know the scenario:

- 2006 TIME VXR bought brand new in May 2007
- Lifetime warranty
- Less than 850 miles. Used for recreation and excercise only.
- Thanks to a lot of your advise, already in the hands of the dealer this morning and assessed as a frame that looks practically "brand new". There were only 2 hairline paint chips on chain stay and fork prior to this incident. Bike spent more time being displayed inside my den than on the road and was meticulously taken cared of. Never dropped or involved in any accident.
- Derrailleur hanger got loose due to problem with rivets. TIME admitted having "ocassional" issues with the rivets as was noted on one of their e-mails. Due to this defect, there are 2 evident scratches on the down tube.
- TIME responded with "does not qualify for replacement", "will not cover the repair of the scratches"

If you were in my shoes, how would you like this settled?
 

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Wow, I think Time is handling everything more than appropriately. It's obvious that right away you went into it believing it would be a hassle and lo and behold, you made it one. You made a post to bash on Time 3 days after the incident over something extremely petty. Have you ever dealt with a warranty before? No warranty in any industry is any quicker than the service you've been receiving.

But good job making another bash thread when you realized your original one would have a limited audience. Hopefully that works for you.

"For the record, I don't need to cut and paste any statements made in regards to this issue to back-up my postings. I have documented evidence (time and date) on all of the communications made between TIME and myself since day one, and don't see any reason to prolong this thread."

You MADE this thread for the very reason you're not wanting "to prolong this thread."
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Kleh said:
Wow, I think Time is handling everything more than appropriately. It's obvious that right away you went into it believing it would be a hassle and lo and behold, you made it one. You made a post to bash on Time 3 days after the incident over something extremely petty. Have you ever dealt with a warranty before? No warranty in any industry is any quicker than the service you've been receiving.

But good job making another bash thread when you realized your original one would have a limited audience. Hopefully that works for you.

"For the record, I don't need to cut and paste any statements made in regards to this issue to back-up my postings. I have documented evidence (time and date) on all of the communications made between TIME and myself since day one, and don't see any reason to prolong this thread."

You MADE this thread for the very reason you're not wanting "to prolong this thread."

Kleh, you are entitled to your own opinion and I respect that.

I did get hassled but did not regret going through this at all. I run a business and the only reason we are succesful even in this economic times, is that we value our customers. We don't make excuses nor we keep them hanging if a concern is brought up to us. I live by this principles and will always do. I guess I was expecting this from them especially after being impressed by their initial response which I commended on a couple of e-mails and postings.
 

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gs3exec said:
Kleh, you are entitled to your own opinion and I respect that.

I did get hassled but did not regret going through this at all. I run a business and the only reason we are succesful even in this economic times, is that we value our customers. We don't make excuses nor we keep them hanging if a concern is brought up to us. I live by this principles and will always do. I guess I was expecting this from them especially after being impressed by their initial response which I commended on a couple of e-mails and postings.
Ah yes, you commended them. Was that in the same post as the one set-up to bash them? And you running a business in no way entitles you to be irrational about a warranty issue, enough to attempt to defame a company, and even tell them you are doing so -- as some sort of poor man's bribe to get better service. Using your figurative business as a means to support whatever this thread is meant to be give you no more entitlement than Time. That's the cop-out. Convince me that Time has been irrational, more irrational than any for-profit company. Unfortunately, new customer sales and service will always come before warranty issues, as they should.

The only reason you're making these threads is to get your way. My 15 month old does something a lot like this as well when she wants candy, except she just yells really loud and throws her toys around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
wim said:
Good to hear that. The days when anyone can say anything on the internet about a company and enjoy automatic impunity are thankfully numbered.
Wim, all the facts are there for you to review with dates and times to back it up.

I am complaining about a defective product

TIME is complaining about a persistent customer who had an issue with their product

You are entitled to your own opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Kleh said:
Ah yes, you commended them. Was that in the same post as the one set-up to bash them? And you running a business in no way entitles you to be irrational about a warranty issue, enough to attempt to defame a company, and even tell them you are doing so -- as some sort of poor man's bribe to get better service. Using your figurative business as a means to support whatever this thread is meant to be give you no more entitlement than Time. That's the cop-out. Convince me that Time has been irrational, more irrational than any for-profit company. Unfortunately, new customer sales and service will always come before warranty issues, as they should.

The only reason you're making these threads is to get your way. My 15 month old does something a lot like this as well when she wants candy, except she just yells really loud and throws her toys around.
Using this thread or this forum was initially intended to get information out and is subjective to your views. I rely heavily on the public forums that I frequent (6speedonline, paneristi, nikonians.com, etc.) for information, to get reviews, to educate myself on a product, and to interact with people that I share common interests with.

If you view this thread as bashing or defaming a Company, I view it as research information that is available for everyone to see.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Kleh said:
Ah yes, you commended them. Was that in the same post as the one set-up to bash them? And you running a business in no way entitles you to be irrational about a warranty issue, enough to attempt to defame a company, and even tell them you are doing so -- as some sort of poor man's bribe to get better service. Using your figurative business as a means to support whatever this thread is meant to be give you no more entitlement than Time. That's the cop-out. Convince me that Time has been irrational, more irrational than any for-profit company. Unfortunately, new customer sales and service will always come before warranty issues, as they should.

The only reason you're making these threads is to get your way. My 15 month old does something a lot like this as well when she wants candy, except she just yells really loud and throws her toys around.

I am entitled to expect top notch customer service after paying top notch $$$$ for their product. I admitted going overboard with my expectations with their responses and I am way over that. The issue now is the resolution they are offering from their response yesterday.

I believe you misunderstand the whole concept of a public forum (Again, this is my opinion). In this thread, you have 2 parties - the customer and the manufacturer. The thread does not give me more entitlement than TIME, as they are also given the same equal opportunity to post their views for the members and the would-be customers to view.

If you were a buyer or a current owner, you benefit :
- by learning more about their products, services, and warranty
- by knowing what may occur if you have a similar product
- by finding out how a consumer rate their product

If you were a manufacturer, you benefit:
- by knowing what problems are out there.
- by knowing what improvements, enhancements, changes you need to use for R & D.
- by knowing the demands of your consumers
- by getting feedbacks from actual consumers whether good or bad

And correction - new customers, sales, service, and warranties should all be treated equally. In case you don't know, most sales are generated by recommendations from old and repeat customers. In regards to your 15 month old kid, you should blame yourself for letting your child grow up that way
 

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gs3exec here is some advice for the future.
You seem to be dealing with this warranty issue on your own. This is a huge mistake.
As a long time bicycle industry veteran my advice is to always let your dealer handle the warranties for you.
Vendors listen to dealers. If you brought that bike into a reputable bike shop and Time was dragging their heels many more options are available for the dealer to make things happen that are not available to you. The store that you purchased your bicycle from should be more than willing to help you out with such matters.

Angry posts on the internet will not help your cause, nor will it magically make a new bicycle appear in your living room.
Step back and think about things for a moment. Time's US branch is a very small operation. They don't have a call center staffed with thousands of people. They at most have half a dozen folks working in a small warehouse in an industrial complex. The fellow that does warranty issues could be on vacation or have been attacked by a rabid bear. They could have a pile of other things to deal with and dealing with a customer that flames them on the internet is rather low priority.
Even with big companies like Trek or Specialized warranty issues can take months at times. It's the way the bicycle has always worked, and probably always will work.

You're bike will be warrantied in due time. For now be gracious and patient as sometimes the world doesn't work the way you want it to. If you are as desperate to ride as you say dust off your old steed, or go mountain biking. I find it hard to believe that someone that wants to ride as much as you only has one bike. Riding on a less than top-notch bike won't kill you.
Or you could find a competent bike mechanic. Fixing loose rivets in carbon frame often isn't that difficult.
 
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