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Mixed Cuscadi - Custom Scale Division - Bad Service, Mostly Good Work

Discussion in 'FEEDBACK: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly!' started by T.L.E. Sharp, May 31, 2019.

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  1. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp Oatmeal Pecan is better than Chocolate-chip. Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    (Quick review for those who don't have time for the wall of text: I received a scale that didn't fit. Went round and round, only received a discount on another set of scales and was forced to modify the original to fit. Now the scale has failed completely and I'm fighting with them again.)

    Let me preface this by saying that Cuscadi also made my UKPK scales and they're perfect. Fit and finish is fine, blade centered, etc. I've seen several others that also are reportedly perfect...

    Back in late February I ordered a Copper Shred CF scale for my Spydiechef. My first purchase from Cuscadi, seen here:


    It didn't fit. After waiting over a month and spending over $100 (85 euro) the damn thing didn't fit.

    I went through the process of disassembly/reassembly several times that evening trying to get it squared up with no luck. Meanwhile the factory scale would pop on without issue.

    The pivot hole on the Cuscadi scale was drilled too high. So when all of the fasteners were in, the pivot wasn't sitting level. Due to the pocketed stop pin design, you can't really adjust the scales up and down to square the pivot as you would on say a griptilian thats off center.

    Then, over the course of nearly 20 emails back and forth, Cuscadi first implies that I've installed it wrong(maybe fair? not everyone has as much experience as I do with knife assembly I guess...) then proceeds to offer every solution other than refunding me or replacing the scale. Including a 3 euro refund so that I can buy a round file and fix it myself... I don't make scales. I didn't pay for a DIY kit!

    Finally we settled on a 40 euro discount on the aforementioned UKPK scales and me fixing the pivot hole. I never felt good about it though. One because they only claim to have given me a discount; there's no publicly stated price for their scales and two because even after modification the Spydiechef scale still wasn't quite square.

    It was acceptable... the blade was off center, but at least it wasn't rubbing and the lockup was at 85%, but at least it wasn't just sitting against the scale at 105%.

    After a month of carry the scale is now completely useless. The tiny lip inside the pivot recess has worn down a bit, allowing the pivot to shift inside the hole made slightly oblong at Cuscadi's behest.

    I can still get the pivot to almost square up, like I did after the initial modification, but it won't stay there unless the pivot is way too tight. Otherwise it walks up after a couple openings, ruining the centering again.

    And when I say ruining the centering I don't mean a little off. When the pivots sits as it did when I first received the scale the blade is so far off that when you close it the blade will actually bite into the scale.

    Now I've gone back and forth with Cuscadi several more times. They've implied that I'm just trying to scam them, even though I offered to return the scale. They've offered a replacement scale, but only in a much cheaper material and they've offered to refund me some small amount. Nowhere near my original purchase amount.

    Only after opening a PayPal case AND several more emails did they finally offer a refund of 45 euro. Assuming I did actually save 40 euro on my UKPK scales (since they don't publicly list prices) 45 euro would at least have me break even.

    I think there's probably a 90% chance that whatever you receive from them will be perfect. They have a reputation for excellence and I think that's probably deserved, but buyer beware: If you get one of the rare bad scales from them they're not pleasant to work with and you'll have to fight to me made whole again.

    I'm just glad I wasn't able to sell or trade the scale. I was honest about the issues experienced with it in my sales/trade post, but I didn't yet know that the modification had failed and the scale was no longer viable.
    Last edited: May 31, 2019
    19-3ben, cbr1000, bonky and 4 others like this.
  2. OilMan

    OilMan Gold Member Gold Member

    May 6, 2004
    Same experience here for the most part but with Strider scales. First couple in black were perfect. Asked for some done in their blue/black G10 and asked that they take pics of it before shipping. They wouldn't. So when I got the scale it has a ton of voids in it. Contacted them and they also didn't offer to remedy anything other than saying if they ever got some blue/black G10 in without voids they'd give me a discount. Never heard from them again until I contacted them a year or two later. Now they say that's just how the blue/black comes.. Not great customer service IMHO..

    Lance Leon and ldc43 like this.
  3. Grenock

    Grenock Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Apr 7, 2016
    Thanks for the post. Will take it under advisement. I have had one set of scales from Cuscadi, the knife in my avatar, and the fit and finish was superb. As you said, I expect far and away to find more good than bad, but maybe the bad is really bad when it does occur if that is how they handle it from a customer service standpoint.
  4. ldc43

    ldc43 Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 20, 2014
    They are very difficult to work with when there is a problem as well, essentially zero regard for customer service. So many good custom scale makers out there that do great work and are equally great to work with. I refuse to give them anymore business.
    OilMan likes this.
  5. Lance Leon

    Lance Leon Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2017
    I highly value the integrity of a maker and their willingness to stand behind their work - it's a make it or break it factor. Return/refund/repair policies represents said qualities, and judging from the experiences detailed in this thread, it seems Cuscadi are not deserving of patronage.

    Thanks for bringing this to our attention, OP and OilMan.
    19-3ben likes this.
  6. Rusty_shackelford

    Rusty_shackelford Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2013
    i had a similar experience with cuscadi.
    I've purchased 3 sets of scales from them. All were perfect but the customer service lacked. i should say perfect*.
    I ordered lscf scale for my spyderco dragonfly 2 g10. They sent me lscf scales for a dragonfly 2 frn model. I clearly stated in my email that i had the g10 model. Their solution was for me to buy a frn df2 and sell my g10 version. Plus they promised me a big discount on my next purchase. After waiting 10-11 weeks for the scales to arrive i said Fcuk it and bought the frn dragonfly. The scales fit perfectly on the frn.
    Plus same deal with the OP on the future discount. I ordered matching lscf scales for a military and mentioned the discount. They talked in circles on how expensive lscf was and bla bla bla but never gave any real numbers. Then when the invoice arrived it didn't seem like there was any discount. A very small one, if any. I could have kicked up a stink i suppose but i really wanted the scales and was willing to swallow the extra cost.
    So my experience has been top notch quality with crappy customer service.
    OP's experience with a sub par finished product is surprising. Hopefully they do the right thing and make it right.
  7. PeteyTwoPointOne

    PeteyTwoPointOne Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jun 10, 2014
    For me it's been very hit and miss with Cuscadi, also.

    Got 3 sets of Anso style Spyderco Military handles. Two fit well, one didn't and I had to work on the backspacer to make it work.

    I've bought a half dozen sets of handles from @suingab that are very well made. However, he only makes handles for certain models from certain manufacturers-- although it's a pretty extensive list of popular brands like ZT, Emerson, & Spyderco primarily.

    Some of suingab's handles he made for me, enjoy!

  8. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp Oatmeal Pecan is better than Chocolate-chip. Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    This seems to be the case. The poorly manufactured scale seems to be a rare exception, but the crappy service appears to be par for the course.

    The fact that they told you to sell your knife and buy another as a solution to them sending you the wrong scales is so hilariously bad I probably would've done it too, just so I could tell the story.
    bikerector and mmmotorcycle like this.
  9. Rusty_shackelford

    Rusty_shackelford Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2013
    It is 100% a ridiculous suggestion on their part, and probably equally ridiculous for me to do it. It’s just after waiting for so long for a product I really wanted it was easy to justify the cost of a new df2.
    In the end it wasn’t that big of a deal because the finished product was exactly what I wanted.
    I was actually thinking about contacting them for a scale for my gb2.
    Hearing they’re slipping on the quality of the product will nip that idea in the bud.
  10. Rusty_shackelford

    Rusty_shackelford Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2013
    Suingab does great work.
    I have placed 3 orders with him and they were all perfect.
  11. ldc43

    ldc43 Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 20, 2014
    Suingab does do great work. Actually, ran into some material issues with voids in a couple scales from Suingab that I am actually in the process of sending back so he can clean them up. Unlike Cuscadi, he was very willing to fix the problem and work with me. That said, I am leaning toward finding more custom scale makers within the states. Ordering out of country just complicates things and makes shipping more costly if/when there are issues. I would have no problem ordering scales again from Suingab though, I have 5 total scales from them and only ran into issues with the material quality of the shred carbon fiber, nothing at all wrong with the fit, craftsmanship, or customer service.
    OilMan likes this.
  12. Fixall

    Fixall Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2018
    Suingab really does do some fantastic work! His fit and finish is phenomenal. I had a set of canvas Micarta Para 3 scales made by him and they turned out absolutely perfect!

    I ended up having a second set of scales made out of G10 for a delica, and while the fit and finish was great... I was rather disappointed in the results.

    I had asked for a set of gray and blue G10 scales that matched the Benchmade 555-1. They should have been a nice dark gray like this.


    Unfortunately, the scales that were shipped to me looked like this.


    They look great, but it's nowhere near the color I asked for. After sending him a message about this, he informed me that yes I had asked for a darker gray, but this was the only gray his supplier had, so it's what I got. No other support was offered other than that. It would have been nice if he would have informed me that he didn't have the right color or sent me a picture before they were shipped (I wasn't aware they were finished until they were almost on my doorstep). I ended up dyeing the G10 dark gray with some RIT dye, but the knife would look a lot better and more uniform with the proper G10. :(
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2019
  13. Rusty_shackelford

    Rusty_shackelford Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2013
    Not exactly great customer service there either.
  14. Fixall

    Fixall Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2018
    I wasn’t exactly thrilled to be honest, but because of the costs/hassle associated with overseas returns, I just decided to drop it.

    Then I found out I can have carbon fiber lil’ para scales made by boomer for $15 less and decided to go that route for my next set of scales, so all is good.
    Mo2 and Rusty_shackelford like this.
  15. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    Will have voids no matter what. Same with marbled cf. The only thing a maker can do is use epoxy or super glue with some cf dust and plug the voids on the surface. This won't fix the many voids under the surface though.

    They don't do this in mass production. And only some custom makers I've seen do that.
    ldc43 likes this.
  16. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp Oatmeal Pecan is better than Chocolate-chip. Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    Yeah, my scale also had a couple voids. Seemed reasonable for copper shred cf to have a few given its method of manufacture. If that was the only thing wrong with it I'd have been more than pleased.
    Mo2 likes this.
  17. miso2

    miso2 Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 19, 2014
    We've lost a few custom scale makers over the last few years.
    Another one bites the dust?
  18. Forcite

    Forcite Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 27, 2014
    Thank you for posting this. I was about to order some scales from them, they seemed a little pushy to get my money. I think I'll shop around.
  19. Rusty_shackelford

    Rusty_shackelford Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2013
  20. T.L.E. Sharp

    T.L.E. Sharp Oatmeal Pecan is better than Chocolate-chip. Platinum Member

    Jun 30, 2016
    Yes, after about 20 emails back and forth we finally settled on them refunding me 45 euro. I think it should've been more, but I didn't want to deal with them any longer. If they did indeed give me a 40 euro discount on my other set (which I doubt) the 45 euro brings me back to square.

    They accused me again of scamming them, stating that I'd told them I had it fixed and now all of a sudden it doesn't fit. I don't know how I could have been more clear. It was fixed, but after use and carry the "fix" broke down and the pivot started to walk out of alignment.

    You'd think someone in their line of business would understand that sort of basic concept. A round fastener in an (after "fixing") oblong hole needs to have some purchase to stay put. It apparently didn't have adequate purchase. Makes sense to me that it would wear with some use and torque.

    I also don't see how I could be scamming them when I offered to return the scale. Breaking even and having nothing to show for it doesn't seem like a very worthwhile scam.

    Seems to me they're just upset that I didn't just take the loss on the chin and that I was willing to hold their feet to the fire with PayPal.
    woodysone, ldc43, bonky and 2 others like this.
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