Sounds like you got a plan David.
Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the opportunities for pleasure, but it has great difficulty in generating joy. Pope Paul VI
So, I think the "greats" were true to their visions, once their visions no longer sucked. Ralph Barker 12/2004
I agree, here. I am one of the satisfied people who replied above, a satisfied customer who has returned many items, and paid postage on many of those items, along with some completely successful purchases. As is turns out, I am in the middle of a transaction with KEH. Earlier this week I ordered a Leica M2 from KEH, in EX condition. When I first tested out the camera, I felt it could be much smoother, so I called KEH, explained my concerns. After weighing the options, I exposed one test roll of film and sent out the camera for a CLA. I noticed on my test roll that some negative frames were touching.
David said: 1) I personally would rather buy equipment which has been checked, even if it costs more
2) Given the fact that goods may need to be returned to KEH quite often, I feel it does not make economic sense for me in the UK to buy from this company.
Today I heard from my repair person that the camera is a rebuild, and that a shaft assembly will have to be replaced at a cost of an extra $200 on top of the CLA for the camera to operate smoothly and space frames evenly. He could tell this just by looking inside the camera and pushing on a part. I suspected something was wrong, but thought a CLA would fix it. I could continue to use it as is, but that is not why I bought a Leica, to use a camera that felt like it had grit in the winding mechanism. I don't know what will happen at this point.
Last edited by jmcd; 03-22-2008 at 02:49 AM. Click to view previous post history.
If you don't mind my asking, what was KEH's response? "Send it back!"? Presumably the "EX" grading means "Obvious signs of wear", so strictly speaking KEH are covered. It would be interesting to hear if, for example, they are willing to sacrifice their profit in exchange for goodwill by making a contribution to the CLA - purely in financial terms, they would probably rather have the camera back and hope to sell it to someone less critical! In Britain, we have the "Sale of Goods Act"
Originally Posted by jmcd
which makes it illegal for commercial companies (not private individuals) to sell goods "not of the quality asked for". On the other hand, of course, if the extra $200 of work turns the Leica into a superb camera. it might be a good investment! A tough call, to be sure!
In my expierence buying from Canada [so outside of the US] for small stuff they often don't even ask you to send it back.
From memory I've had:
1) Ordered a #1 board got a #0
2) ordered the lens shade didn't get the mounting
3) I know some thing else wasn't perfect but can't remember.
I was just told to keep everything. They mailed me a new correct board for no added money. Quickly credit my card for the cost of the shade.
OTOH alot of the time I'm only looking at the bargain stuff. The rule I learned long ago was stuff that looks too nice was never used. You need to ask why wasn't it used? Often it's because it's lived it's life in the repair shop.
This may be on occasion, but an awful lot of Leicas are bought by amateurs who cherish them and use them very lightly. In the course of time, the cameras "retire" along with their owners - the owners can't get about to take pictures, so the camera goes in a display case, or lies in a drawer, eventually forming part of the owner's estate after his/her demise.
Originally Posted by Nick Zentena
I had acute difficulty in stopping myself buying Leica R3s, I kept finding them in mint condition with lens for £150 - of course, they had been lying around and had gummed up, so needed a CLA. In the case of "jmcd" and the Leica, I would be surprised if the camera had been used hard enough to wear the wind mechanism out (if it had, the rest of the camera would surely look really beaten up), quite possibly a previous owner had hands like a gorilla and forced the wind lever hard against its stop, bending some gear teeth.
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Options: I could mail back the M2 to KEH for return. It would take up to several weeks for technicians to evaluate—if they agreed with the assessment, postage both ways would be refunded, along with the purchase price of the camera. No offer on their part to evaluate for need of a CLA at this point, but I am sure I could mail it back for them to evaluate. KEH holds up their end of the deal, but because the buyer is the one to actually use the camera, one can be looking at easily a month or two to come to an agreement about what work needs to be done if any to get things right.
The M2 I received looks quite nice but has been heavily used, to point of needing a new sprocket and other bits. During previous rebuilds it has received new bottom and top plate, and many new screws, which is why it looks so good, or EX, on the outside. It seems like a new sprocket and gears will get it into fine shape.
Probably true, but for some other firm, but not KEH.
Originally Posted by David H. Bebbington
In my experience, and evidently an awful lot of others, KEH is virtually the only seller that rates items so conservatively. At KEH "Ex" means excellent condition, or even better. My own experience is that KEH's "excellent" is safer than a lot of retailer's "new".
I'd be pretty surprised if KEH doesn't make good on any issue. I don't care about which photo they use as long as they keep to their policy of conservative ratings.
I think the only real advantage to keh.com vs eBay is that they have an excellent track for honoring their return policy. Now that keh.com ships internationally, there is little to no price advantage vs. eBay if you are willing to be a patient buyer.
Yes, they are conservative about rating cameras - but those ratings are cosmetic and, primarily, only have to do with wear on the finish, superficial scratches, etc.
Do not expect keh.com to reliably check the mechanical condition of any camera they are selling for under several hundred dollars - it simply isn't worth the time or cost. The last two manual-focus 35mm cameras I bought from keh.com had mechanical problems that rendered the cameras useless and neither would have required any more than loading the camera with a junk roll of film and simply testing the film transport.
I have had problems with cameras bought on eBay but I have always managed to return them for refund.
Nowadays I do not give keh.com any special consideration in my purchases.
Digital Photography is just "why-tech" not "high tech"..
Other than having a far better and infinitely more consistent rating policy, immediate delivery, customer service, a long positive history, and an inventory that is far easier to browse I'd agree. Ebay and KEH: nearly identical.
Originally Posted by aldevo
you forgot to mention they pretty much invented the camera rating system, that is used by them and everyone else ..