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keyboardclass

Brompton complaint

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Off to see Peter tomorrow re: a purchase described as 'minor repairs to table'. In fact there's a third piece of spruce inserted the length of the table with half the seam open!  Any advice?  Thanks folks.

edit: was, seems he's still in the US?  So much for appointments.

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Do you want to return the instrument for your money back? I would start by calling them and explaining that you feel that the description was not accurate. Maybe that's all you will need to do, but maybe not.

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If you read the terms and caveats, you will realise that you have little recourse, as they claim not be luthiers or experts. Given the number of years experience some staff members have there, you can make of that what you will.
I have seen instruments which I knew personally, that had significant condition issues, which were not even mentioned on auction condition reports. I was quite shocked, as even in the dark they would have been hard to miss.

In the end however, lots are sold as seen, and it is up to the buyer to be sure of what they are buying before bidding. An auction house is not like a dealer, the items are not theirs.

I wish you luck in trying to resolve your dispute, but I fear you will get the same answer as previously.

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Auctions

Condition reports are provided as a courtesy to the bidder, but you are always advised to inspect items in person if you plan to bid.

Condition reports aren't binding.

From Bromptons Terms & Conditions :

Prospective buyers are strongly advised to examine personally any goods in which they are interested, before the auction takes place. Condition reports are usually available on request. We provide no guarantee to the Buyer other than in relation to Forgeries, as explained in clause 1 of these Conditions of Business.

The only situations in which you might reasonably challenge an auction house would be either a mistake in the attribution (something described as "by" a particular maker when it wasn't) or an undetected post crack in the back. You also need to do this within a sensible time frame ie. before the auction house has paid out the consignor.

Pay in peanuts and you get monkeys.

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6 hours ago, keyboardclass said:

Off to see Peter tomorrow re: a purchase described as 'minor repairs to table'. In fact there's a third piece of spruce inserted the length of the table with half the seam open!  Any advice?  Thanks folks.

edit: was, seems he's still in the US?  So much for appointments.

  

8 minutes ago, martin swan said:

Auctions

Condition reports are provided as a courtesy to the bidder, but you are always advised to inspect items in person if you plan to bid.

Condition reports aren't binding.

From Bromptons Terms & Conditions :

Prospective buyers are strongly advised to examine personally any goods in which they are interested, before the auction takes place. Condition reports are usually available on request. We provide no guarantee to the Buyer other than in relation to Forgeries, as explained in clause 1 of these Conditions of Business.

The only situations in which you might reasonably challenge an auction house would be either a mistake in the attribution (something described as "by" a particular maker when it wasn't) or an undetected post crack in the back. You also need to do this within a sensible time frame ie. before the auction house has paid out the consignor.

Pay in peanuts and you get monkeys.

Gee, I've never had this problem on eBay.  :ph34r::lol:

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I bought a bow at T2 that turned out to be plastic. It was a nice looking bow, apparently real wood, and wasn’t described as such. When I wrote about it, the reply was,”We do not sell plastic bows. Please send it to us and we’ll take a look.”

I did so and they said,” well I’ll be. Plastic.”

and refunded the cost.

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My last blind purchase from Bromptons turned out to have two "they should have mentioned that" points of damage. I suspect these were noticed by other prospective bidders which served to keep the price well down. Neither transpired to be functionally significant and I love the violin, but I'll be more careful next time

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10 minutes ago, keyboardclass said:

The oversight is just as valid as a post crack.  You can get a. Credit card through the seam.  To report that it's been repaired when it hadn't is totally misleading.

Can you post a picture? 

An open repair sounds like something that simply needs attention, whereas a back post crack which would half the value ...

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1 hour ago, martin swan said:

How about a photo of the violin? For all we know it was made that way ...

Not that uncommon.

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Here's the seam, including new f hole (fairly crude huh?), on it's way up the instrument.  The seam opens again as you get towards the neck.  Below intact treble hole.

 

fhole2.jpg

fhole.jpg

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If the piece goes from bottom till top it is most likely original. Some makers used three pieces of maple for their top. I can't tell if the F hole is crude or not from such a close distance. Would also like to see the entire instrument or mention the lot number so we can have a look at the brompton's photo's.

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From the other post, dated June:

2112847862_kbcviola.thumb.JPG.73f6bd942a9579833214ba2fe8c01334.JPG

I'm assuming this was bought without viewing the instrument in person, which only goes to highlight the problems of buying in this way.

As six months have passed, I think it will be far too late to expect the auctioneers to do anything, other than offer it in another sale on your behalf. Whoever owned it previously will have been paid out shortly after the sale. That said, the onus is on you to be sure that what you are buying is what you expect, not on them. The auctioneer is only the vendor.

Obviously you are unhappy with the situation, but the terms of buying at auction are clearly set out, if you choose to read them.
I don't think it is fair to expect the auctioneers to spend hours going over dozens and dozens of low price instruments, writing out all the faults, where even if it sells, their commission might amount to £20.

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I complained in their office within weeks.  They've ignored my emails since.  A reserve of £800 nets them quite a good commission I would think.  As for the condition - 'minor repairs' ?    There's a 4 cm spruce strip inserted down the entire top!  That's going to take their staff hours to see??  It's been crudey re varnished - does that take hours to see?

The dynamic of this thread has turned a little weird.  What's with all the support for lazy (I'm assuming not dishonest!?) auction staff?

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