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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 03-13-2008
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Sewing Machine Ripoff

I found an online article (supposedly) by a guy who bought a factory second sewing machine from the same factory that makes Sailrites. His machine was labelled "Yamata" but was the same walking foot, high horsepower, zig zag stitch machine that Sailrite sells for $750. and he got it for $325. He goes into a lot of detail about the minor adjustments that he had to make to get it running correctly but was quite pleased with his purchase. The company that he ordered it through was "SpecBrands" AKA "eSPECTRONS CORP" and he gave a website address.

I ordered the same machine December 3rd, paid by PayPal and shortly after received a receipt stating that the machine was coming by standard shipping. After a few weeks I found that the website was gone, the phones disconnected, and my eMails were unanswered. PayPal was notified but they don't seem to be able to do anything. I'm out my $320. and have nothing to show for it. Don't let it happen to you!
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  #2  
Old 03-13-2008
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Ouch. Sounds like it was a scam. Sorry it happened to you.

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  #3  
Old 03-13-2008
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There are TONS !!!

There are TONS of sewing machine scammers out there!! DO NOT ever buy a sewing machine from someone other than a reputable dealer you know and trust or from an individual that is local if buying used.

Sailrite sources their machines from off shore vendors but then spends about two plus hours on set up and tweaking for each machine before they ship you one. Their machines are worth the money especially when you take CUSTOMER SERVICE into account which you WILL need on a sewing machine.

I managed to find a local & used commercial machine on Craigslist but before I purchased it I called the local dealer to make sure they could and would service it..

Again, there are a number of horror stories out there about Sailrite knock off scammers! My guess is that the article you read was perhaps written by the scammer as this is a ploy some will use..

Good luck recovering your money and I would start with Paypal!!

Local Craigslist find and ued less than 6 hours!!
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Old 03-13-2008
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To expand a bit on halekai36's comment, Sailrite doesn't just rebrand an offshore machine. Their machines are patented (the walking foot, I believe) and of course, the service and advice are value added. I have the blue machine and the only improvement that I'd wish is for a longer arm, but that's a nit.

Sorry to hear about your problem.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabreman View Post
To expand a bit on halekai36's comment, Sailrite doesn't just rebrand an offshore machine. Their machines are patented (the walking foot, I believe) and of course, the service and advice are value added. I have the blue machine and the only improvement that I'd wish is for a longer arm, but that's a nit.

Sorry to hear about your problem.
I own that one and have the same improvement wish. The thing has been great. My wife even started using it to hem blue jeans and other thick heavy fabrics. I thought about finding a used one but ended up forking over the money for new.

Next project is a riding sail and then jack lines.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Azura View Post
PayPal was notified but they don't seem to be able to do anything.
Paypal "buyer protection" is a joke. It's not that they can't do anything, their policy is to not do anything.

Did you pay through a credit card? If so, call the credit card company and ask for instructions for filing a formal protest of the payment. Unless Paypal can demonstrate you received the machine you paid for, the credit card company will claw back the payment from Paypal and refund your money.

I went through this a couple years ago on eBay. Nitwit sold me tools. I paid with Paypal. When I arrived to pick up these tools, Nitwit realized he didn't have them in stock. He kept promising "real soon now". When I filed a complaint with Paypal they told me there was nothing they could do as the 30 day limit for complaints had expired.

Fortunately I had paid through Visa. I printed off all the correspondence with Nitwit and Paypal, faxed it to them and got reimbursed inside two weeks.

Surprisingly, a couple weeks later I got a very gracious email from Paypal telling me that if I ever have a problem in the future, please contact them and as they would love to help me. Right. They don't want me going to Visa as Visa beats them with a big stick.

Good luck,

Tim
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Old 03-13-2008
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Using a major credit card is really your best protection. They've got the resources to go after the scammers and are required to refund your money in the case of non-delivery of goods.

Don't confuse your DEBIT Card, with a Visa or Mastercard logo on it, with an actual credit card. There is a huge difference, and you should never use your DEBIT card on an internet-based transaction IMHO, since anything charged to the DEBIT card comes directly out of your bank account... and depending on what is going on...may be very difficult to reclaim.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gramp34 View Post
Paypal "buyer protection" is a joke. It's not that they can't do anything, their policy is to not do anything.

Did you pay through a credit card? If so, call the credit card company and ask for instructions for filing a formal protest of the payment. Unless Paypal can demonstrate you received the machine you paid for, the credit card company will claw back the payment from Paypal and refund your money.

I went through this a couple years ago on eBay. Nitwit sold me tools. I paid with Paypal. When I arrived to pick up these tools, Nitwit realized he didn't have them in stock. He kept promising "real soon now". When I filed a complaint with Paypal they told me there was nothing they could do as the 30 day limit for complaints had expired.

Fortunately I had paid through Visa. I printed off all the correspondence with Nitwit and Paypal, faxed it to them and got reimbursed inside two weeks.

Surprisingly, a couple weeks later I got a very gracious email from Paypal telling me that if I ever have a problem in the future, please contact them and as they would love to help me. Right. They don't want me going to Visa as Visa beats them with a big stick.

Good luck,

Tim
Sorry but I have to disagree with your comment on Paypal protection policy. I purchased an item in January that was "significantly not as described" and lodged a dispute through Paypal's resolution center (the time limit is now 45 days from purchase) when I couldn't get a satisfactory response from the seller.
After receiving no satisfaction from the seller during the buyer/seller communication phase that Paypal moderates once a dispute is opened, I elevated the dispute to a claim. They found in my favor and recovered the $ from the seller.
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Old 03-14-2008
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Just a quick follow up regarding the "sewing machine rip off." I have a Sailrite SR100. I don't remember exactly what I paid for it but it was a lot, like close to $1000. I took it to be serviced recently and the sewing machine shop explained what base machine it was (re-labeled) and how I could have bought it for less than half. Now Sailrite does put a heavier flywheel on it which is useful but not worth twice the price. So on the surface I do agree with the post above. However, Sailrite had everything I needed in one place to do my canvas work and knowledgeable support staff. With materials I paid roughly $1500 and ended up with new canvas and a sewing machine vs. paying $3500 for a custom canvas shop to do the job. So while Sailrite may not be right for everyone, I am not at all unhappy with them. They need to make money somewhere and I think they provide a valuable resource. That's not to say they are right for everyone, just that even though I may have "paid too much" for my sewing machine, I still see the whole cost / benefit of dealing with Sailrite as offering good value for me.
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Old 03-14-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marinedtcomRob View Post
So while Sailrite may not be right for everyone, I am not at all unhappy with them. They need to make money somewhere and I think they provide a valuable resource. That's not to say they are right for everyone, just that even though I may have "paid too much" for my sewing machine, I still see the whole cost / benefit of dealing with Sailrite as offering good value for me.
Rob,

Your post and this thread are timely for me, as I am considering purchasing a Sailrite machine. I have a fair bit of canvaswork from our boat that needs to be renewed, and the quote from a local shop was staggering.

My question for those of you who have gone this route: How difficult is it to achieve good results? Can an all-thumbs nimrod figure this out, or is some sewing/stitching aptitude and prior experience a prerequisite?

If it matters, the sorts of projects I am contemplating are the somewhat smaller variety like: teak handrail covers, binnacle cover, bimini boot cover (not the bimini), winch covers, etc.
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