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Why do so many 'new' items have signs of usage??


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One thing I have noticed with astronomy gear and accessories is that pretty much no matter what you order, of from where, a surprisingly large number of items do have signs of wear and tear.

I am actually not convinced I have many NEW items at all! That includes three OTA's!

I have seen finger prints on filters, dents and dirt (sand) on tripods, scratches on mounting rails, smudge marks on the inside of APO's (!), and a whole host of other odd findings including a plethoria of missing parts!

This is starting to annoy me. In no other field of retail have I seen so much old stuff being shipped around as 'new'.

I personally think this has to end. However I do see an issue when combined with generous return policies - perhaps these policies are at the root of this? Are we balancing on a knife's edge regarding the integrity of our goods, whilst maintaining the right to return them?

Or are we a bunch of indecisive people who return more than what should be the norm?

What's your experience on this folks?

Edited by Jessun
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All my astro gear appears to have been brand new although I did have a big issue with Jesops over a camera for my son which was quite clearly (if it had ever actually arrived - which it didn't because I cancelled the order) going to be a demo unit even though I had rejected one in the local shop for that very reason.

You do make an interesting point though about all those items returned within the legal time-frame because the owners simply changed their minds - I do really feel sorry for retailers on this score as I don't see why they should be responsible for their client's poor decision-making!

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I have only ever returned two astro items. A finder scope because I ordered a RACI and a straight through was delivered by mistake; and a filter that had defects in the coating, I exchanged for a different brand and paid the extra. Everything I have purchased new, (save for the filter) has been in perfect order on delivery with no suggestion that it has been used previously.

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You do make an interesting point though about all those items returned within the legal time-frame because the owners simply changed their minds - I do really feel sorry for retailers on this score as I don't see why they should be responsible for their client's poor decision-making!

I don't feel sorry for retailers, it's up to them to help their customer make the right purchase, and to make sure the equipment they sell is accurately described and of good enough quality.

All retailers are in the same boat, and they ultimately pass the costs back to the customers, so it's a luxury we're paying for.

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When buying from web retailers you have every right to inspect the goods and change your mind/send them back if you decide you don't want them. The rights are with you to do so.

The mystery is where do all these returned goods go? My guess is that they get returned to stock and shipped to fulfil the next order.

I'm not sure that there is a easy way for on-line retailers to manage this, but, NEW should be NEW.

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As per other posters, all the new items I've bought have arrived looking

absolutely pristine.

Jesper - where do you shop ?. It would be useful to know so that we can avoid using them !

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I suspect any retailer worth their salt (which makes me question which stores the OP has been having issue with) will return the item to the manufacturer for reprocess / repackaging.

I'm reasonably sure the bigger names in online astro sales won't sell you an item that's been "used" (or even opened for that matter) without making you clearly aware of that fact.

I've bought a lot of kit, and never had any item that I felt has been "used" prior to me owning it.

:D

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It was clearly explained that the Skyliner 150P I bought was being returned by a customer that on viewing the boxes decided it was too big. I got a hefty discount and the boxes had never been opened!! Thanks Zoltan 365Astronomy.

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Needless to say, we 'only' sell new kit so if anything bought from us looks secondhand please return it :D

There are of course times when we have B-Stock, refurbs' seconds, whatever you want to call them, but they are clearly identified and priced accordingly.

I have noticed some of the hardware (rings, dovetails and saddles, etc) can occasionally look a bit used but I think that is due to the manufacturing process. There are two telescopes that do look a bit used when they arrive here at FLO (please don't ask me to name them, one made in Russia, the other Mexico). We would normally drop them from our range but they are popular here at SGL and there aren't affordable alternatives so instead we clean, adjust and check every one prior to dispatch.

HTH,

Steve

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I know in the first days of baader planetarium, they also had been shipping lots

Of filters with finger prints on them.

Try to send it back for clean filters but took a while before it was good enough

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

Edited by Erwin Kats
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I seem to be the unlucky one then...

Where do I shop? Well I am not interested in throwing names around here as I have so far not encountered any trouble when I returned anything. The shops are big though. All very familiar names, that you all have heard of.

I just personally see a systematic and disproportionate re-shipping of what is clearly demos or returns. Very unlike anything else I ever experienced buying related to other areas of retail. Lets say something like one in seven or so items have made me suspicious ranging from simple filters with broken seals to a 1500GBP/1800EUR mount that looked like it had done a tour in Nam...

FLO is in my experience totally off this list of retailers by the way. Only fair to point that out to our SGL members.

Edited by Jessun
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I did have a big issue with Jesops over a camera

I too had a problem with Jessops in Worcester in the early 90's. Brought a Canon 1000FN over the counter.

I asked to look at one and one was brought out from the stock room, the security seal was then cut through to open the box for me and when we got the camera out and turned it on it showed that 12 exposures had been taken and upon checking there was a roll of film indeed in the camera.

The salesman said that it was brand new stock that came in the day before and I saw him cut the security seal with a pair of scissors so how the film got in there I do not know but I the salesperson got me another box from the stock room and that one was OK.

Over the years I have read stories how the assembly staff at factories have used equipment and then put them back. So I guess that is what happened and if we had the film developed we could of had come Asian kid's 10th birthday party snaps :D

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In this current recession I suppose its human nature to try to sell stuff thats been returned. Nothing to do with astronomy, but I recentley purchased a set of electric

scales from a well known high street retailer which didn't work and had the battery

seal strip removed. I returned them and noticed a few days later that theyd been

put back on the shelf for sale again

Davey T

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Personally I haven't had any problems apart from a damaged item from Scopenskies which I had to send back, my first purchase from them and I can say I'll never deal with them again after the item was sent out late and arrived damaged (Though I can't blame scopenskies for the damage I don't think). I believe that has being my only bad experience in buying something. Everything else has being brand new. :D

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In this current recession I suppose its human nature to try to sell stuff thats been returned. Nothing to do with astronomy, but I recentley purchased a set of electric

scales from a well known high street retailer which didn't work and had the battery

seal strip removed. I returned them and noticed a few days later that theyd been

put back on the shelf for sale again

Davey T

I bought a nifty little "pen-mouse" that was supposed to work something like those pens that you use to electronically sign your signature. The thing did not work, so I took it back and asked for another one. They told me they did not have any additional units in stock, but were expecting "new ones" to arrive in a day or two. "Check back then." So I did, and would you believe, they tried to sell me the SAME UNIT that I had returned a couple of days earlier ! ? !

BTW, that store went out of business a few months later ! Serves them right !

Jim S.

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