Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Let Me Check Your File ....

Ominous words when you are trying to deal with a warranty issue. I first heard this line when I called G3 to get a tip attachment loop for a pair of skins that were sent to me as replacements for a lightly used (in my opinion) pair of skins that I returned for warranty because the tail attachment system had broken off and, due to a design error, could not be repaired. On that occasion, G3 did send me tip loops which, it seems had simply been missed in the packaging process. After using these new G3 skins for about a year, and reglueing them three times in that time period - a ludicrous and expensive (at $15 per tube) thing to have to do with skins that are less than a year old - I again returned the skins for warranty. And, again got a replacement pair.

Last June, after skiing on the new, new skins (my second G3 pair if you are counting) for a total of 13 days, there was no glue on the skins yet again. I returned them again and received my third pair of replacement skins in less than two years. On this, the final occasion, I was told that I was forthwith cut off. There would be no replacement skins under any circumstances.

Now, I find myself with a pair of Black Diamond Syncra skis that I have skied on for 16 days and the top sheet is peeling off. After much discussion with the MEC warranty department, MEC has agreed to replace them with a new pair of the same skis. This took quite a bit of wrangling (unusual for MEC who are generally exceptionally helpful with warranty issues). The warranty representative tried to tell me that the skis were delaminating due to improper storage (in my garage), despite the fact that I have a 15 year old pair of Atomic skis stored under the same conditions with no delamination. Or that I had beaten the ski up so much that the top sheet was peeling off. But, really how much can a 120 pound 48 year old generally conservative female skier beat up a pair of skis in 16 days?

Unfortunately, somewhat complicating the issue is the fact that these particular skis (Syncras) are replacements for a pair of Dynafit 7 Summits skis that had delaminating bases (which MEC happily warrantied). Two random and unrelated occurrences in my mind - one is a top sheet pulling off, the other is a delaminating base due to stress points in the ski design, but, not in the mind of the warranty representative, who clearly suspects me of beating my skis up and then claiming they should be replaced under warranty. Though why I would go through the hassle is beyond me.

The end result is this pair of skis and skins has got to last more than one year. Can it be done? Check back in May or June to find out. 

Broken ski on day 3 of a 7 day traverse

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