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Another run of W&SS neck knife?

Discussion in 'Koster Knives' started by pepemrtnz, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. NOEXCUSES

    NOEXCUSES

    5
    Oct 31, 2014
    It was great to finally see progress on this run of WSS knives until I checked Mr. Koster's Facebook page and see that he just completed the Bush-Monkey collaboration knives. How can a maker justify having paying customers wait for over a year for completion of their order when the maker starts and completes another run in less than 3 months. The Bush-Monkey collaboration was announced August 6th of this year and pictures of the completed knives were just posted to Facebook. What makes those customers more valuable than those of us who have waited patiently for our W&SS order?
    Mr. Koster needs to complete all the orders outstanding on this list and stop accepting orders until he is caught up. Never have I had a custom manufacturer take this long or give so many excuses as to why they have not fulfilled their commitments. There is no justification to be told that your order had been started, payment made and accepted and then to find out that the knife has not been started. Mr. Koster is apparently planning on making quite a few customers wait even longer until he produces another run. This type of customer service is not acceptable!
     
  2. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    It's a fair question. Let me explain a few things.

    The collaboration process was started much earlier than what you see. And I'm only doing part of the work. Those knives are actually not even finished yet. They are being sent to Bush-Monkey for him to finish and build sheaths for. All I've really done is the handle work. He did the blade work and will finish them up. The whole idea was to have a little fun and bring the work of 2 makers together. I hope it's ok for me to keep knifemaking fun and interesting while still filling orders.

    It's similar to the question of whether or not knifemakers should be able to take products to knife shows when they have orders outstanding. I know it's hard for customers to understand...and doesn't seem fair. But it's not fair to the maker if he has orders, to not be able to do shows as well - to expand his customer base and maintain a storefront. It's an age-old dilemma.

    I have had 2 big delays in the WSS production. I'm very grateful for everyone's patience and understanding while I got things fixed and running again.

    My process is well documented on this forum, my website, etc. I work in batches. Not in linear order.

    If I stopped taking orders to finish one batch of knives, it actually wouldn't speed things up - it would make things slower...much slower. I have to wait for things to be done. For example, tumbling knives takes 4-5 hours per batch. I'm sure everyone would agree it's OK for me to be working on other things while they're tumbling. Same thing for heat-treating. I send all my knives to Peter's Heat-Treat in PA - takes a few weeks for the full roundtrip. So, I work on other things. If I have a snag in one part of the process, then everything else gets 'bumped' as well. In this case, it was issues with my tumbler. That snag also set back around 150 other orders.

    This is not the only batch I'm working on. Waiting for a custom order is part of the process. I'm a one-man shop. I process the orders, sweep the floors, take the phone calls, etc...at the end of the day, I'm always amazed I get anything done in the shop at all. I wish I could clone myself and make things go faster...but until then, waiting is part of the game. A year seems like a long time, but there are others that have waited longer in this WSS run, as well as with other knives.

    Please understand and don't take it personally. I have been finishing WSS orders this week and getting ready to ship them out as quickly as possible. I'll send you an email with delivery confirmation numbers once it's on its way.

    Thanks for understanding.

    Dan
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2014
  3. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Got some finished!

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Brummie

    Brummie Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 13, 2007
    I'm not sure what custom makers you have been buying from, but in my experience there aren't many established (i.e. popular) custom makers producing knives at a reasonable price who will take less than a year. Take Dozier knives, which are similarly available in a limited range of models and steels - they are a small company, not a one-man shop, and their waiting time on a custom order is now 3 years. Yes, it's frustrating to see retailer orders get fulfilled ahead of custom orders, but it shouldn't surprise you that when push comes to shove, a maker will prioritize a customer whose future business may be worth tens of thousands, over an individual whose future business may be worth a couple of hundred. It also gives us consumers another option if we don't want to wait (although not necessarily for the model we want at that time).

    If you want to fault Dan, then a legitimate criticism is that his estimates of timing tend to be overly optimistic. I'm sure it is in good faith, based on a projection of how things could go if there are no unforeseen delays, but when I see his estimated completion times, I tend to assume I'd be lucky if the actual wait is 3 times that. It may be more prudent on his part to under promise and over deliver, but lets all remember that these are estimates, not commitments, and typically no money changes hands until the final stages. Overall, a maker has a right to organize their business as they see fit, just as a consumer has the right to factor delivery time into their buying choices. There is no escaping the fact that obtaining a popular product from an individual maker requires either luck, a long wait, or paying a high price. Personally, I'm willing to wait for a good price and the ability to order exactly the handle materials I want. If your priorities differ, then put out a want-to-buy notice on the Exchange.
     
  5. NOEXCUSES

    NOEXCUSES

    5
    Oct 31, 2014
    Brummie,

    As of this date I have acquired $4329.62 in custom knives this year, with as long as a 3 year wait on two.
    This is also not my first dealing with Mr. Koster (Muck, Survivor, Bushcrafter, Bushmaster and EDC) and most orders have been event free. We order from Mr. Koster knowing that there is no completion date given only that he states a 5 month to a year normal. We accept this because of the quality that is delivered.
    You are completely right when you say that a maker has the right to establish and maintain order lists as he or she sees fit. My issue here is the lack of and/or false communication that Mr. Koster has provided. I only suggest better communication. When customers are informed and kept updated they will wait longer for a quality product.

    Any way I deal with these types of situations daily in my professional life and simply hope that this is not what it seems. I truly only wish to receive my knife as promised.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2014
  6. zman9mm

    zman9mm

    24
    Sep 15, 2013
    Well, on a lighter note.. I have one of these and it's a pretty neat little knife! The folks who are getting them will be quite happy with them :)
     
  7. Ranger78

    Ranger78

    24
    Nov 8, 2013
    Thanks for updating the order list Dan. It goes along way answering questions about progress. Those finished units look great. Please post a pic of that Jade G-10 when you get it done. That might be my next order!
     
  8. RicFlair

    RicFlair

    384
    Oct 1, 2014
    Can we order one now? They sure look nice. I really want one. I may just go and give it try on your website.
    I want the Orange G10, kydex loop, and Scandi grind. Looks like one very useful tool to me.
    Thanks!

    EDIT: Placed a order via your website. :)

    Also: For those worried about the wait: I have waited almost a year for custom made flashlights. So, nothing shocking to me. I chalk it up to that whole, "You Gotta Pay To Play" theme. Time is part of the price :)
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2014
  9. pepemrtnz

    pepemrtnz

    793
    Oct 13, 2010
    I will just place this here so Dan doesn't have to: How to be a great customer

    I for one am SO STOKED this run is happening again (oh wow, I forgot I was the one who started this thread haha!). I have had one for a few years and it never leaves my hiking pack. Now 2 more orange ones on this run for safe keeping just in case I lose/break them (yeah right), since it is the perfect little knife to put in your bag and just leave it there. Who knows, maybe one (or two) of those little orange beauties in that photo is mine.....
     
  10. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Here's a perfect example of why I don't promise deadlines.

    My buffer died.

    No sharpening
    No deburring
    No finishing kydex sheaths, etc.

    ...until I can get this fixed.

    I will get done what I can, and then jump back on it as soon as parts arrive.

    Thanks!
    Dan
     
  11. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    things are almost back to normal. Hoping to start shipping these out today.
     
  12. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    more finished. Getting sheaths today.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. pepemrtnz

    pepemrtnz

    793
    Oct 13, 2010
    Mine pair of orange neckers arrived recently and are AMAZING! Totally worth the wait-- thanks again!
     
  14. Ranger78

    Ranger78

    24
    Nov 8, 2013
    Dear Santa (aka Dan Koster),

    All I want for Christmas is my W&SS knife! Please let it get here soon. Can't wait any longer.

    Happy Holidays
     
  15. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Santa sent some yesterday and the day before and will be sending more today!

    :D
     
  16. Brummie

    Brummie Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 13, 2007
    Do those include mine? I heard that a package just arrived for me at home, but won't find out what it was until the end of the month, as I'm out of the US.
     
  17. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    I'm hoping to finish up the batch yours are in today.
     
  18. Brummie

    Brummie Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 13, 2007
    Thanks, Dan. Please let me know when they ship, so I can give people a heads up. Other option is to hold onto them until I'm back at new year.
     
  19. solid4ever

    solid4ever

    832
    Feb 17, 2013
    Dan,

    Got an email from you to pay for the WSS black with yellow liners. Can't find what the final total is. I responded on the email but haven't heard back from you. Still interested.

    andrewjtucci address
     
  20. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    I've been a little distracted. My Dad was in town over the weekend - will reply to emails as soon as I can. Thanks!
     

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