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Spikes X052 14 ounce dark indigo Cone Mills White Oak red line selvedge. 7 ounce veg tan hand stamped leather, shell edge interior flys, made in USA Railcar branded hardware. If you haven't held one, the cut and sew quality stands out. Supplies limited!
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Just got a job done at Railcar.

The job was a maximum waist downsizing on a pair of EU Lee 101 Riders. I sized these up to fit my thighs. But with a modern tapered jean, which is basically shaped like an upside own triangle, that means you get a grossly oversized waistband. So, S.O.P. for thick thighed folks is to size them for the thighs, and then have a tailor bring in the waist. I had previously altered these by hand, by tacking hidden pleats behind four of the belt buckles. This was to temporarily test how much downsize was needed, and to at least get them wearable for the time being. This actually worked really well, and they could have been left that way. But the plan was always for it to be temporary, until I got them to a real tailor. I wore them like this for maybe a week total over the past year, then found the time to take them in for the work.

I usually go to Denim Doctors or more recently Double Needle (both of which have always given me top notch quality, and are significantly cheaper than Railcar), or Anthony the Tailor, a local old school guy about 70 years old who is a true artist (but not cheap or fast). But out of curiosity, based on lots of favorable online comments, and simply wanting to give them some business because I like that they are nice kids from my neck of the woods, I wanted to try Railcar's odd method of downsizing that I'd heard about. Found out when I got there that the price had gone up since last I heard, but it was OK. I was already there, and glad to give them the dough.

I ordered a hem job at the same time, with the understanding that the cut length would eventually be used to craft some extra belt loops for the pants. Total: $100.

As far as fit, the alteration worked splendidly, as expected. But I was badly surprised at some of the details of the work, based on the glowing reviews this place gets from the online community, on their high-end prices and image, and on their marketing of themselves as repair experts. Here is some examples of the fine work by "the experts with the years of hands-on skill...to do the work correctly."

Here is what they did to the gorgeous black patch. I will assume that most of you here know how old-style Lee patch stitching is supposed to run, with two divots per line. But even if you don't know about Lees, you can kind of see where the factory stitching was, and those factory lines are the lines that Railcar was supposed to follow exactly. I overexposed the pix to make this more evident. I should note that the top left stitching tore loose the first time they were worn, for a short five hour shift at work; they did not get returned to me with the stitching torn out.

First pic is as shot. Second is the same pic, but marked up to show the factory line vs. Railcar's line. Red is factory line. Blue is Railcar's.

Sorry, but this is a no-no on a nice leather patch, as a denim specialty shop especially. If you can't do it by machine (which you SHOULD be able to), then you simply do it by hand, rather than just giving up and doing a Frankenstein job.

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Some additional pix showing each divot more closely (who knew Dr. Frankenstein would some day end up working at Railcar!):

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And examining the back side behind the patch reveals what I think are threads that were not even tied off (correct me if I am wrong, but I don't see any tiny little knots):

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This really got me too. This is where they take off the excess waistband length after bringing in the high hips. Nowhere near a square fold there, compete with a very unevenly spaced stitch from the edge. Any fashion design 101 student would be ordered to re-do this by a teacher/master. I've seen better handiwork at Sears. I could have done a better job myself on this part of the job. In the end, this is not a cosmetic detriment, because it is hidden. I wouldn't bother to have it re-done. But it is an indicator of the level of care and pride in workmanship that was used during the work, and it is not what should be expected from a denim specialist and expert. In a specialized technical field (which I do work in), I would never release work with this amount of imprecision.

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And to top it off, in the end, then never gave me my belt loop material. When I dropped off, that message never made it onto the work order form, so the cutoffs got tossed. Good luck matching this material, which is a polished black that is designed not to fade.

And finally, after telling me that they'd undo my tacks that held the hidden temporary pleats, they left one in place.

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So, I was a bit confused. This does not sound like the norm based on everything I have heard about this company's alterations and repairs. I contacted them [nicely and formally] with a fairly brief explanation of the major points of concern, explaining that they had fallen short of my expectations for an expert tailor.

The exchange did not go well. They came back defensive by saying that my statement that they had fallen short of my expectations for an expert tailor was "a little extreme." They assumed that they had to "fix" these jeans from the previously performed "bad work," and assumed that I had come to them because "someone else was not able to do it," then stated that "it is probably difficult to find the kind of service we provide anywhere else." They offered to fix the patch stitching and to install belt loops for me.

I replied, in detail this time. I told them that no, they did not fix previously done bad work, and I did not seek them out because nobody else could have done it. They undid temporary trial run tack stitches to make a permanent alteration instead. I explained the I did not use my usual choices for alterations because I wanted to give Railcar a try for a variety of reasons (good reviews, local business, I grew up the the San Gabriel Valley, them getting local kids into a traditional craft, etc.). I explained my feeling that any old black would not do for the belt buckles, and instead, I would rather they hem the pants higher again to salvage just enough material to make belt loops. And I asked if I could come in today to get that done (they hem on the spot for walk-in customers – a great service FWIW). As for fixing the patch, I explained that it was already perforated with excess holes, and it could not tolerate any further mistakes. I said that if they thought they could do it perfectly, they were welcome to go ahead. But if not, then I would fix it by hand.

They seemed to be very offended by me answering each of their previous points in detail. The response was for them to tell me they could not meet my expectations, and they were giving me my money back for the alteration, and that I should go to one of my usual tailors. They ignored my request to re-hem the pants. Basically, I got fired as a customer, because my expectations were unreasonably high.

My response was to say OK, but what about getting me that excess material vie re-hemming? Can I come in?

Their response was again, pretty much a carbon copy of the previous message. We can't meet your expectations. Go to another tailor. Dang it! Fired again for expecting and demanding expert work from an expert.

I replied to that, saying I still need that material. If you won't make good on that, then you should refund me for the hem job as well.

They have not fired me a third time yet. Nor have they issued a refund yet.

So in the end, what they effectively stated was that the following are impossible to meet, "extreme" expectations for them: 1) That specific customer instructions be notated, relayed, and followed. 2) That the original holes in leather patches are exactly followed when re-stitching. 3) That folds be straight and the entirety of a stitch be evenly spaced from an edge.

I am sorry, but those are simply no brainers, not extreme, impossible to meet expectations from a denim specialist tailor.

The icing on the cake: I find out later that it's the co-owner I'm talking to. I had expected that such responses were coming from a young shop manager who felt that she had been personally attacked because I did't like her craftsmanship.

I went in to one of my normal denim tailors today to drop off some jackets for alteration, and he said that the patch thing is not only a major no brainer and that it is always very, very important to use the original holes on a leather patch, but also that it's not difficult on a technical level to follow those holes.

Weird experience, man. In the end, I just want them to cop to their mistakes, not argue with me about them. And just get some belt loop material for me by re-hemming the jeans an inch higher. I find it unfathomable that they claim they don't have the raw skill to perfectly sew the patch, but in the end, if they can't do it, then I'm perfectly happy to do it by hand myself.

I would not be posting this based on the work alone. I would not be posting it if not for the terrible exchange that followed.

I would love to post the actual e-mails, but it's too much at this point in a post that is already very long and detailed, and nobody would probably care anyhow.

 

 

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I can only speak from my own experience, but I go to Railcar anytime I need work done on a jean. They’ve downsized two pairs and hemmed a couple others and they’ve always done great work and have been super friendly.  Sorry you had a bad experience. 

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On 12/7/2019 at 10:54 PM, erockisalive said:

I can only speak from my own experience, but I go to Railcar anytime I need work done on a jean. They’ve downsized two pairs and hemmed a couple others and they’ve always done great work and have been super friendly.  Sorry you had a bad experience. 

You and many others...which is why I trusted them.

I don't "hate" them on a personal level. It's not about that. They simply put out some embarrassingly bad work for me...and instead of being able to take the blow back that comes when you do that as a high-end business, and instead of doing some VERY SIMPLE things to make it right to a customer's satisfaction, they bailed like children due to personal offense/ego – the inability to take deserved, yet still measured, criticism, and to meet very simple and reasonable customer requests to make things square as they can be made in a bad situation. And to top it off, they not only bailed, but they still haven't refunded me as they said they would, and they are ignoring the still open problems with the hemming service (either fix it for me or refund me, because you didn't do what I asked for – those are your very easy choices). I just think their e-mails were full of flat-out wrong and illogical statements, they shirked proper accountability in lieu of placing it on me for being overly critical, and displayed unacceptably poor use of the English language for a professional shop. It was flat out unprofessionalism in nearly every way. They need to be taken to task, and the reviews balanced to reflect what is perhaps a more realistic picture of their quality level.

FWIW, I fully expect my post to be denigrated and possibly nuked, as they are an advertiser here, and probably buddy/buddy with lots on this forum. But that's not too relevant to me. I'm not entering myself in a popularity contest. 

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I didn't make it to the end of the review, it was unnecessarily long winded and i'm not that interested in RFG to give enough of a shit but it sounds like you have a valid point (although we need to hear both sides) i can't understand why your post would garner negs? unless fan-boys just will not accept critism of this brand? ..who knows... anyway i have a point, i had a similar thing years ago when a small denim company hemmed my jeans too short, it was a simple case of 'measure twice cut once' as opposed to shoddy workmanship, they instantly called me up, they couldn't have been more apologetic..asked where i bought the jeans (they were very expensive) replaced them at their own cost, shipped them from JP so i could soak them at my leisure, pre-paid all the postage and hemmed them to the correct length.
Now that's what you call 'customer service' they're still running a very successful business 10yrs later. I'm not even a customer of theirs but i wish them all the best.

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10 hours ago, Double 0 Soul said:
i can't understand why your post would garner negs? unless fan-boys just will not accept critism of this brand? ..who knows... anyway i have a point,

1. Because nobody cares and 2. it 's very childish to air your grievances on a public forum, even going so far as to threaten to post emails. I'm not a fan-boy fwiw but in this instance I just can't abide with someone who sounds like they're throwing a tantrum.

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Mmm, it does sound like he's airing his dirty laundry in public but he's probably exhausted all other avenues.. most experienced retailers would have dealt this storm in a tea cup before it got to the forums, as fellow consumers and denim enthusiasts we should offer him a bit of support, i wouldn't like it if this was to happen to me and i'm sure nobody else would either, if we can't offer support, lets not greet his grievance with negativity, that just gives retailers the impression that they can produce sub-standard work and we should accept it, he paid his hard earned $$$ they should do whatever is in their power to make sure he goes away a happy customer.

This is 'super-denim' after all, not 'inferior-denim'

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1 hour ago, ColonelAngus said:

1. Because nobody cares and 2. it 's very childish to air your grievances on a public forum, even going so far as to threaten to post emails. I'm not a fan-boy fwiw but in this instance I just can't abide with someone who sounds like they're throwing a tantrum.

I certainly care. I’ve considered going to Railcar for exactly this service, and seeing that this is how or might turn out is very useful.

This whole forum is folks giving largely-unsolicited accounts of their experiences with different brands and retailers. Why should the negatives be any less worth reading about than the positives?

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@julian-wolf

for every bad experience you read about there might be 5 positives you didn’t. I just don’t see how productive it is to rant about this publicly to a bunch of strangers and expect everyone to be sympathetic. If it were me I’d try to resolve the issue with the company privately. If that fails then I’d chock it up to a loss and consider it a learning experience. Mistakes happen and maybe there was some miscommunication that we don’t know about. I’m not trying to be a jerk — I just believe these types of outcomes should be between the buyer and seller and behind closed doors. 

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5 hours ago, Double 0 Soul said:

 

This is 'super-denim' after all, not 'inferior-denim'

He made a post complaining about the work done on his Lee’s, not a $350 pair of PBJ’s. 

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7 hours ago, ColonelAngus said:

He made a post complaining about the work done on his Lee’s, not a $350 pair of PBJ’s. 

Doesn’t invalidate the experience. He paid the price for a Railcar alteration, not a mom-and-pop chop job. I admit some of the issues discussed are small details that I would probably miss. But we are hobbyists, after all. We *could* potentially be pedantic with some things.

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I don't think the post deserves neg's. IMO the post is excessively long and unnecessarily detailed. I didn't read all of it to get the gist. That's his style and I'm not going to complain about it. I've posted a couple of times about bad services that I've had from much loved, highly regarded brands. 

I've used RFG for a couple of tapers and several hems, and their work and customer service has always been great. It's bothersome to me to see this experience. I want to continue to use them as my go-to. I've been told that it's Steven himself who does tapers and that's why it takes so long, vs a hem, which I assume can be done by any skilled sewer and takes a couple of days. Maybe someone not a skilled as Steven did this job? 

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4 minutes ago, mpukas said:

I've used RFG for a couple of tapers and several hems, and their work and customer service has always been great. It's bothersome to me to see this experience. I want to continue to use them as my go-to. I've been told that it's Steven himself who does tapers and that's why it takes so long, vs a hem, which I assume can be done by any skilled sewer and takes a couple of days. Maybe someone not a skilled as Steven did this job? 

This is why I think these matters should be kept between the buyer and seller. You had good experiences, unfortunately, one negative comment can hurt a business even if that business has done hundreds of these jobs with hundreds of satisfied customers. Should RC fix the problem? Absolutely, but there are always two sides to a story and I think it's premature to judge the merits of the OP without knowing RC's perspective.

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Can i just direct you to the W.H.Ranch thread :wink:

I did say that it was "long winded" and "we need to hear both sides" ...maybe it's time to agree to disagree regarding the negs and move it along.

Edited by Double 0 Soul

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Regarding the service and quality of work from RFG, their taper work is great I've had about 3 pairs done by them. The downsize is a different matter, the one pair I had done (which was actually a pair of their own jeans) didn't go particularly well and I was not happy with them. Never wore them again  and the interaction with them afterwards questioning the work did not go great. 

Also, they way they mark the package you  pay import tax on the return post....for an item you have already bought and paid shipping/tax on!

I'll use them again for tapering if required but never for downsize work. 

 

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Hi everyone, Steven here. Just wanted to chime in. I thought this issue, we already resolved via email.

First off thanks for everyone and their interest.

And YES there is two sides of the story. I agree this is not the platform for this kind of conversion. And yes, it was already handled and concluded via email.

I'll try to keep this short. So I don't have to explain every line item that was mentioned. This is just quick summary outline.

 

When this gentleman at his  first contact with us, he wrote a long email insulting our quality, work and marketing. Not even giving us the opportunity to resolve the issue.

His jean came in with a horrible downsize job that was not good. It was pinched at the waistband and we had to spend time to unravel the tangled work. We reversed the previous job to get it back to its normal state at no extra cost. The work was very bad and was a good size mess. I wish the pictures of that was posted.

We told him and explained to him that our work was pretty good and we had to actually fix the previous persons work. And if we missed a detail then we would go over it and do what we can at no extra charge.

Also to mention. When this gentleman came in he asked if we could use the same waistband button and we said it can not be reused as we have to cut it off. We will install a new one and try to match it to the same color as original. I guess he didn't believe us because he told us to save him the removed cut off button. We told him it was not reusable when he dropped off the pair. So he was told that from the start.

He wrote an even longer email, as you could imagine, to us saying a lot of stuff including he has other local options.

We were going in circles at this time and we felt like this was not going anywhere with him. We even issued him a refund for the service we provided.  So all this was actually free to him.

We told him that we feel that our service might not satisfy his expectations so it would be better to use one of the local services he mentioned in his previous email. 

At the end of the day, the pant was 100 times better and repaired from when it came in.

 

So my thought is this.

I wish he would have gave us the opportunity to handle this problem when he contacted us. Instead he wrote us pages of emails.

He was even local to us, so he could have just came in again and I could have probably done some fixes while he waits.

We are honestly really friendly. All of us here at the shop and take great pride in what we do. We are denim enthusiast  just like all of you guys! We love the stuff!

This was a case that got blown way out of proportion right at the start. Could have been easily resolved.

We took this as a learning experience. Please feel free to message me if you have any questions. Or email.

 

 

Edited by Steven RFG

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On 12/7/2019 at 10:54 PM, erockisalive said:

I can only speak from my own experience, but I go to Railcar anytime I need work done on a jean. They’ve downsized two pairs and hemmed a couple others and they’ve always done great work and have been super friendly.  Sorry you had a bad experience. 

Thanks for letting us work on them! We appreciate the business.

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On 12/10/2019 at 9:44 AM, ColonelAngus said:

1. Because nobody cares and 2. it 's very childish to air your grievances on a public forum, even going so far as to threaten to post emails. I'm not a fan-boy fwiw but in this instance I just can't abide with someone who sounds like they're throwing a tantrum.

Well said.

Thank you.

Edited by Steven RFG

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22 hours ago, ColonelAngus said:

This is why I think these matters should be kept between the buyer and seller. You had good experiences, unfortunately, one negative comment can hurt a business even if that business has done hundreds of these jobs with hundreds of satisfied customers. Should RC fix the problem? Absolutely, but there are always two sides to a story and I think it's premature to judge the merits of the OP without knowing RC's perspective.

Exactly.

Thank you.

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22 hours ago, mpukas said:

I don't think the post deserves neg's. IMO the post is excessively long and unnecessarily detailed. I didn't read all of it to get the gist. That's his style and I'm not going to complain about it. I've posted a couple of times about bad services that I've had from much loved, highly regarded brands. 

I've used RFG for a couple of tapers and several hems, and their work and customer service has always been great. It's bothersome to me to see this experience. I want to continue to use them as my go-to. I've been told that it's Steven himself who does tapers and that's why it takes so long, vs a hem, which I assume can be done by any skilled sewer and takes a couple of days. Maybe someone not a skilled as Steven did this job? 

Hi. Thanks for letting us work on your pants.

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On 12/10/2019 at 11:47 AM, julian-wolf said:

I certainly care. I’ve considered going to Railcar for exactly this service, and seeing that this is how or might turn out is very useful.

This whole forum is folks giving largely-unsolicited accounts of their experiences with different brands and retailers. Why should the negatives be any less worth reading about than the positives?

Let us know if you ever have any questions or concerns! We would be happy to help. Here is the link to our contact page. It's faster for us to respond here. https://railcarfinegoods.com/pages/contact

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On 12/10/2019 at 10:40 AM, Double 0 Soul said:

Mmm, it does sound like he's airing his dirty laundry in public but he's probably exhausted all other avenues.. most experienced retailers would have dealt this storm in a tea cup before it got to the forums, as fellow consumers and denim enthusiasts we should offer him a bit of support, i wouldn't like it if this was to happen to me and i'm sure nobody else would either, if we can't offer support, lets not greet his grievance with negativity, that just gives retailers the impression that they can produce sub-standard work and we should accept it, he paid his hard earned $$$ they should do whatever is in their power to make sure he goes away a happy customer.

This is 'super-denim' after all, not 'inferior-denim'

Hi. Thanks for the comment. We would have loved for him to leave happy. I wish he gave us the opportunity to resolve it. Instead it sounded like we couldn't satisfy him. With that being the case, we thought using his other options, he mentioned in his previous email, would be the better option to make him happy.

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Hopefully we could end this here. At the end of the day. We love what we do. I feel like our brand is very transparent in the way we run and operate as shown in our social media. Including our quality and who we really are as people. We are enthusiast just like you! Also we are human.

This is a fun forum and a fun group. Thanks for following along the brand.

Edited by Steven RFG

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1 hour ago, Steven RFG said:

Hi everyone, Steven here. Just wanted to chime in. I thought this issue, we already resolved via email.

First off thanks for everyone and their interest.

And YES there is two sides of the story. I agree this is not the platform for this kind of conversion. And yes, it was already handled and concluded via email.

I'll try to keep this short. So I don't have to explain every line item that was mentioned. This is just quick summary outline.

 

When this gentleman at his  first contact with us, he wrote a long email insulting our quality, work and marketing. Not even giving us the opportunity to resolve the issue.

His jean came in with a horrible downsize job that was not good. It was pinched at the waistband and we had to spend time to unravel the tangled work. We reversed the previous job to get it back to its normal state at no extra cost. The work was very bad and was a good size mess.

We told him and explained to him that our work was pretty good and we had to actually fix the previous persons work. And if we missed a detail then we would go over it and do what we can at no extra charge.

Also to mention. When this gentleman came in he asked if we could use the same waistband button and we said it can not be reused as we have to cut it off. We will install a new one and try to match it to the same color as original. I guess he didn't believe us because he told us to save him the removed cut off button. We told him it was not reusable when he dropped off the pair. So he was told that from the start.

He wrote an even longer email, as you could imagine, to us saying a lot of stuff including he has other local options.

We were going in circles at this time and we felt like this was not going anywhere with him. We even issued him a refund for the service we provided.  So all this was actually free to him.

We told him that we feel that our service might not satisfy his expectations so it would be better to use one of the local services he mentioned in his previous email. 

At the end of the day, the pant was 100 times better and repaired from when it came in.

 

So my thought is this.

I wish he would have gave us the opportunity to handle this problem when he contacted us. Instead he wrote us pages of emails.

He was even local to us, so he could have just came in again and I could have probably done some fixes while he waits.

We are honestly really friendly. All of us here at the shop and take great pride in what we do. We are denim enthusiast  just like all of you guys! We love the stuff!

This was a case that got blown way out of proportion right at the start. Could have been easily resolved.

We took this as a learning experience. Please feel free to message me if you have any questions. Or email.

 

 

 

This is almost entirely false.

First paragraph. My initial e-mail was not long or aggressive. It did not address their general quality, work, or marketing. And unless I was just telling them to go screw themselves right off the bat, how can an initial e-mail do anything other than give them the "opportunity to resolve the issue"?

As explained in detail, the jeans did not come to them with "a horrible downsize job" that was "very bad and a good size mess." No material was removed or "altered" before. There were four tacks that temporary held hidden pleats in place. On the one that they left tacked, it took me exactly 15 seconds to cut the tack with a blade.

I asked for the waistband button because the stock button was quite nice to me, and I didn't like Railcar's two button options. Sometimes, if you cut the tack button off from the back, a waistband button can be re-tacked. Railcar cut through the button shank from the front instead. I don't get this point of criticism. 

As for the e-mail "going in circles," that's not really an objectively backable statement. I must disagree with it. I simply asked them to resolve the issue in a way other than what they initially offered. I asked them to hem the pants again in order to salvage some belt loop material, instead of giving me two black belt loops. (This is something that normally takes them five minutes while you wait; seems like a perfectly reasonable and cost effective solution to the entire problem.) I told them I normally use other local tailors, but I had wanted to give Railcar a try...and the reason for my saying this is because they had attempted to make it seem like it would be hard to find someone else who is a good tailor, therefore I shouldn't criticize them (a nonsense point).

They simply didn't want to deal with me any more, because I had taken them to task on every one of their B.S. points from their initial response to me. Nobody likes being told they did a bad job. Nobody likes doing what a customer requests to settle a problem instead of what they want to do to settle it. Nobody likes reading a lot of words. I am sure they didn't want to work with me. But oh well. That's business. I didn't say anything outrageous to them via e-mail. But they said plenty of nonsense to me.

"At the end of the day, the pant was 100 times better" is hyperbolic and irrelevant to the issue at hand. It moved from a temporary tack job, one step above a pinning, to a permanent alteration. It was not a "repair" of a horrible previous job. I even explained to Karin (not sure of spelling) when I dropped off that this is what had been done, but I guess it's another thing in addition to the request for cut leg ends, that she didn't notate. By the very nature of making the alteration permanent, the jeans are "better" than before, and it being "better" does not negate any problems that there were with the work. They seem to keep hammering this point that simply because the jeans moved from temporary tacks to a permanent alteration, the work on the jeans was so difficult, and should not be judged so hard.

I gave them a specific opportunity to fix the problems, and specifically asked if I could come in on a certain day, three times, so "I wish he would have gave us the opportunity to handle this problem when he contacted us" makes no sense.

I did not write "pages" of e-mails instead of seeking a resolution. I wrote them for the purpose of seeking a resolution. There was a 250 word initial "complaint." Their reply was nonsense to me, so I wrote a 750 word response, still seeking resolution, in a very specific way. The other e-mails were short. I'm sorry, but 750 words is a three minute read at average reading ability, and hardly seems worthy of complaint in a debate seeking resolution on finer points.

Yes, it could have been easily resolved. That's the point. I asked for a certain resolution, on a specific day. And got told to go somewhere else.

As for the refund, I haven't seen it yet. I am hoping it comes through. I paid in person

And the mistakes on the hem job are still unresolved.

The bottom line here, once you cut through all the verbage of the e-mails, is that they got upset that I complained. They offered me a certain solution. I said, well, how about this instead. They said go somewhere else, take your money back. I said that doesn't address the problem. They said go somewhere else. I said well, that still doesn't address the problem. And I still don't have the money back, 6 days later.

 

Their initial e-mail (all names removed):

-------------------------------------------------

Hi,

 
Your Lee jean is ready to be picked up.
 
-- 
Thank You,
Railcar Fine Goods
 
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
My initial "complaint" that they say insulted them and didn't give them a chance to fix the issues:
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
Hello,
 
I picked these jeans up yesterday and wore them today.
 
I’m sorry to say that I am not impressed with some of the quality of work that was performed.
 
In general, the alteration turned out acceptably. The change in fit is what I expected.
 
However, I noticed that when the leather patch was sewn back on, the tailor did not perfectly follow the existing thread holes. As you probably know, Lee patches are sewn on with four triangle shaped divots in the thread lines. One of the divots was followed correctly. The second had the correct shape, but was significantly skewed over from the original holes. Then it appears the tailor gave up on even trying, as the remaining two divots are nowhere close. It’s really amateur looking work.
 
Additionally, by the end of the day today, the patch was coming off on one corner.
 
Thirdly, the tailor left one of the previous alterations in place, while undoing the other three. I had to undo the last one myself.
 
Finally, I specifically requested my cut ends back from the hemming, so I could have matching 6th and 7th belt loops made and installed. But the material was not left in my pocket as usual. I realize that there was almost none left, but you don’t need much to make some belt loops.
 
For the price of $75, I expect expert tailoring. You fell far short of that.
 
--------------------------
They responded with this:
--------------------------
 
Hi Keith
Thank you for the email. I was going to give you a call but you didn't leave your phone number on the form.  I think I do remember your jean, was it the one that had previous work done on the downsize that we had to fix? If it was I felt like we do an excellent job on fixing the previous bad work done, I think that is why you dropped it off to us because someone else was not able to do it and since we specialize in denim because we make them from scratch hearing you say that you "expect expert tailoring and fell short of that" seem a little extreme since it is probably difficult to find the kind of service we provide anywhere else. If you are disappointed about the reattachment of the leather that is an easy fix,  we get so many jeans in that we may have missed the fine details but let us know if you would like that done. As for the hem, I pulled your order and I didn't see anywhere on the form that you wanted the excess hems just the button but it is normal practice for us to give the cut off hems back but if there is very little cut off we usually throw it away. If you like we can give you a few belt loops if you wanted them installed. Just let us know.
 
Sincerely,
 
-------------
My response:
-------------
 
Dear ---------,
 
I am a bit confused by several things in your response.
 
I did not have previous work done that you "had to fix." I had selected you to do the work specifically, from the moment I bought the jeans. I just wanted to see how your alteration might work first before committing to it. I tacked in some hidden pleats as a temporary measure until I could find the time to get the jeans to you. It was not previous work that I was disgusted by and had to have fixed by you because "someone else was not able to do it." 
 
Any tailor can take in a waistband. There are at least two well known denim specialty tailors in Los Angeles aside from Railcar, aside from my local "little old Italian guy," who is excellent. I chose you because of your specialty (specific knowledge of the finer details of the denim hobby), and your reputation, including the fact that you manufacture jeans. Proximity was another factor, as I am from the San Gabriel Valley.  I also very much like seeing young local kids from my neck of the woods involved in such a traditional craft, and I wanted to support you for that reason as well. You yourselves claim that you are experts (your own words) in your own marketing/Website. Your reputation precedes you in the denim hobbyist community. Therefore my expecting of expert tailoring from you is in no way extreme, and I don't understand that characterization of my expectations.
 
Your argument seemed to be simply that, "We are the only ones who can do what you had done, so you shouldn't hold our workmanship to that high of a standard." I find that to be a very confusing argument that flies against your image. You're basically saying, "We are experts, therefore you shouldn't expect expert work from us." Is that really an argument a company with your image and reputation wants to make? You want people NOT to expect expert tailoring from you? In fact, it's the only reason people go to you; every customer of yours send their work in expecting that of you. I am no different.
 
It appears that initial notes were not made regarding the saving of material for belt loops, but I did say so verbally. That is not a workmanship error; it's a communication error. But it's an error nonetheless. Unfortunately, this particular denim is hard to match, as it has a bit of a "polished" appearance, and is specifically designed to resist fading. Additionally belt loops made of any double black material would stand out in time. The only solution at this point is to cut off enough extra length to make some belt loops, and then re-hem higher. I hate to lose the length, but it's preferable to me over having belt loops made of a different material. And not much needs to be cut off, luckily.
 
As for the patch, I can give you another attempt to install it well, but at the same time, it has already been poked full of a bunch of extra holes. It might be better for me to just rip the seams out and hand stitch it myself, as that would allow more precision in terms of following the existing factory holes, and a stronger stitch.
 
I have also noticed that when you folded and tucked the waistband back into itself near the button, after shortening it, the fold was not made squarely. It flares out like a belly. It just looks like the work on these was rushed over all. I would rather have waited the four weeks I was quoted, and got more precise work, that to have got them back fast like this.
 
Everyone does a bad job from time to time. It's forgivable, ad often fixable. But the bottom line is that my expectations of quality are not in any way out of line, and I should not be challenged on them. Anyone who knows good tailoring would have the same problems I had with the work. YouYou should, instead, simply say, "Sorry we did a bad job. Let us turn it into a good job."
 
I can come in today to have the belt loop material trimmed off and the hems restitched. I will accept the "belly" on the end of waistband, but I did want to inform you of it so you can be more precise. As for the patch, if you think you can do it perfectly, you are welcome to take a shot. If not, I will do it by hand.
 
-----------
Their reply:
-----------
 
Hi Keith
Unfortunately it looks like we couldn't meet your needs and we are sorry about that. I think you are probably correct, you polishing it off by hand might be better to get the results that you are looking for. Again we apologize that we cannot meet your expectations maybe another tailor could provide them in the future for your alteration needs.  I'm gonna go ahead and refund you for the downsize service.
 
Sincerely
 
---------
My reply:
---------
 
Dear ----------,
 
This still leaves open the hemming/belt loop material issue. Will you fix that if I bring them in today?
 
Keith
 
-----------
Their reply:
-----------
 
Hey Keith
I'm sorry I really feel like we can't meet your quality expectations, I think it would be better off if you used one of the tailors you previously mentioned in your email to meet your needs.
 
Sincerely,
 
-----------------------------------
My reply (final e-mail in the chain):
-----------------------------------
 
Hello,
 
I am talking about the fact that I was supposed to get material back. I still need that material. I explained that you can hem a bit higher to get it.
 
Your solution seems to be “firing” me as a customer, instead of fixing the issues. You have framed everything as “not meeting my expectations,” as opposed to, “We messed up.” But all I have done is explain your errors to you objectively, and asked for fixes.
 
If you can’t fix the problems with the hem, then you should refund for that work as well.
 
I really think you’re taking this far too personally. Everybody screws up, and I have nothing against you people personally, or your shop, or your service in general. 

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On 12/9/2019 at 11:33 PM, Double 0 Soul said:
I didn't make it to the end of the review, it was unnecessarily long winded and i'm not that interested in RFG to give enough of a shit but it sounds like you have a valid point (although we need to hear both sides) i can't understand why your post would garner negs? unless fan-boys just will not accept critism of this brand? ..who knows... anyway i have a point, i had a similar thing years ago when a small denim company hemmed my jeans too short, it was a simple case of 'measure twice cut once' as opposed to shoddy workmanship, they instantly called me up, they couldn't have been more apologetic..asked where i bought the jeans (they were very expensive) replaced them at their own cost, shipped them from JP so i could soak them at my leisure, pre-paid all the postage and hemmed them to the correct length.
Now that's what you call 'customer service' they're still running a very successful business 10yrs later. I'm not even a customer of theirs but i wish them all the best.

Hi again. I was hoping this was over in the public forum.

I'll try to summarize our intentions handling this below.

(Also, I did not take the time to read his post or his copy and paste email thread post above, so keep in mind it may be edited. As I see his other responses edited.)

- We missed a detail on the alteration after we repaired the previous work.

- We offered to fix the detail that we missed.

- You replied back and made it pretty obvious we could not meet your needs.

- We refunded you the whole amount for the service to your credit card. Repairing the jeans and altering them at our loss.

- We felt like we could not meet your needs and your expectations and you should try the other tailors you mentioned in your email.

 

Hopefully we could just end this. Thanks.

Edited by Steven RFG

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