I appreciate the support and advice on this forum. It is certainly reassuring to hear that my gut reaction when I inspected my purchase is not unfounded. This is exactly what I was looking for.
Having said that, I would urge restraint in passing judgement until the dust has settled. Please remember that this is my personal account of a transaction for which the retailer has not yet fully responded.
Yes there is no question that there is a problem here. An item was advertised on sale; I paid for it; I got something else. Don't worry, I've covered my bases. My receipt lists the items paid for and I have a screen grab from the online ad. On the other hand, I'm also willing to consider that this may have been an "honest" mistake. For all I know, some employee didn't know any better.
Yes, the response I got from this business when I first voiced my concerns, is even more regrettable. Although speculation on my part, I suspect this probably was an attempt to pacify me and make me go away, regardless of what actually caused the mixup. But, as they pointed out, I was calling first thing in the morning after a busy week at the show and they hadn't even had a chance to unpack. At this point they've requested a few days to sort things out and I've agreed.
I'd also like to take some responsibility for this kerfuffle. After all, I did buy these items in person and had every opportunity to inspect the goods and voice concerns before opening my wallet. In addition, I should point out that I purchased many other items at the same time, with which I'm completely satisfied. Furthermore, the fact that these folks spent nearly half an hour providing me with specific and valuable knowledge about how to maintain my boat, certainly influences my overall opinion of them. Finally this chandler was recommended to me by local sailors and judging by the volume of sales, they obviously have many satisfied repeat customers. It is for these reasons that at this time, I am choosing not to crucify this business in a public forum.
Pending final resolution of this situation, I certainly reserve the right to reverse this decision
I'm sure some of you think that I'm giving these guys way to much benefit of the doubt.However, I like to think that we all make mistakes in life, big and small, sometimes intentional sometimes not. I certainly appreciate when I'm given a chance to make good on my mistakes. I've given these guys an opportunity; let's see how this pans out; and I'll certainly post any developments here. At the same time, I completely agree with those who are stating that we need to inform each other as consumers, which is why I am offering to provide further detailed information to those who are requesting it.
Phew. I apologize for the long winded response. If you're utterly bored by this post, just wait until this newb starts posting real boating questions....