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Flyte Bicycles

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GotMyGED

Monkey
Mar 29, 2006
187
0
Knoxville
Well, I have just experienced the worst customer service ever. I thought small family owned bicycle companies were supposed to have superior customer service compared to industry leaders like trek, giant, and specialized. BUT I WAS WRONG.

Flyte Bicycles doesn't care about their customers.

Long story in a short version:
The customer service rep told me to send in my frame so he could take a look at a non-essential piece that had broken off. The frame I sent in was a lightweigt Airborne XC hardtail. (Flyte used to be under the name Airborne). The customer service rep received the bike, then called me and said it was defective and that he was going to replace it with a flyte frame. I told him not to worry about it, just to send me my frame back and that i would pay for shipping, due to the fact that the flyte frame was not of equal quality.

The customer service rep then informed me that he could not send my bike back, and that i would receive this POS frame in a week.

I am pretty pissed, I was mislead, didn't know i would never see my first mountain bike again if i sent it to those bastards. Now i am stuck with a frame that weighs almost a pound more, and has crooked decals on it.

I even talked to the president of the company he was an %#$hole.
 

binary visions

The voice of reason
Jun 13, 2002
21,646
397
NC
Um, I don't think they're legally allowed to keep your frame. It's still your paid-for property, you just sent it to them for inspection.

Tell them to send it back or they'll be hearing from your lawyer.
 

GotMyGED

Monkey
Mar 29, 2006
187
0
Knoxville
I knew they weren't legally allowed to keep my frame, i just didn't have the time to threaten a lawsuit. I couldn't just threaten something and then not back it up.

I think the main problem was that once they decided to send me one of their POS flyte frames, they gave away my airborne frame to an employee, or just threw it away. So, they couldn't physically send it back to me.

The whole situation sucked, and the president of the company didn't want to help me out at all. He wouldn't even give me a deal on an upgrade to a Ti frame.
 

GotMyGED

Monkey
Mar 29, 2006
187
0
Knoxville
SuspectDevice said:
Flyte/Airborne is a division of Huffy FYI...
Actually, that is no longer true. Huffy filed for bankruptcy last year, and since they were the major shareholder of Airborne, they could no longer use the "Airborne" name due to legal issues.

That is the story that the airborne rep gave me last september right before he lost his job.
 

trailhacker

Turbo Monkey
Jan 6, 2003
1,233
0
In the hills around Seattle
So it sounds like your issue was with the Airborn, not with Flyte? The following may or may not be similar; I am not familiar with Airborn or Huffy's deal?
Our company had some $ issues in the late 80's and was consequently bought by another company. The only thing that really changed was the name on the paycheck as the former owner was made the vice-president and is now the general manager (the #1 besides the owner) and most of the higher up management types stayed with the company.
For replacement part purposes we are not obligated to honor any warranties or even have available parts for product made before we were bought. However we do take care of people as it is good for business. Actually it is good business - when I was managing the replacement parts department we had sales of over $750,000 when I was moved to the engineering dept.

My point is that if Flyte isn't "really" Airborn, even if it is all the same people, located in the same facility, you might be lucky you even got what you did?
$.02
 

EOBF

Monkey
Mar 26, 2005
177
0
Bellingham, WA
trailhacker said:
So it sounds like your issue was with the Airborn, not with Flyte? The following may or may not be similar; I am not familiar with Airborn or Huffy's deal?
Our company had some $ issues in the late 80's and was consequently bought by another company. The only thing that really changed was the name on the paycheck as the former owner was made the vice-president and is now the general manager (the #1 besides the owner) and most of the higher up management types stayed with the company.
For replacement part purposes we are not obligated to honor any warranties or even have available parts for product made before we were bought. However we do take care of people as it is good for business. Actually it is good business - when I was managing the replacement parts department we had sales of over $750,000 when I was moved to the engineering dept.

My point is that if Flyte isn't "really" Airborn, even if it is all the same people, located in the same facility, you might be lucky you even got what you did?
$.02
Ha! You silly corporate pawn, all he wanted was his old broken frame back, rather than shoddy replacemant crap and you call him "lucky"?
 

blue

boob hater
Jan 24, 2004
10,165
0
california
EOBF said:
Ha! You silly corporate pawn, all he wanted was his old broken frame back, rather than shoddy replacemant crap and you call him "lucky"?
Yeah...something non-essential on his frame was broken, he sent it back to see if it could be fixed. They kept the frame, and sent him a crappier one without his consent. You'd be pissed off, wouldn't you? Especially about an Airborne...
 

trailhacker

Turbo Monkey
Jan 6, 2003
1,233
0
In the hills around Seattle
My bad, I blew off the part about them sending him crap for his "still useable" frame. I say "still useable" becasue there is always two sides to every story and we haven't heard the other side. Not defending them, but after being intimately invloved with our CS department, you wouldn't believe what people think you should be doing for them.

The story just reminded me of an experience with Intense a few years back where they weren't going to waranty a chainstay ($375)so I said "fine, send it back to me". They said not going to happen. What I learned after talking directly to them was I should stop having the dude from the shop that has an "in" with them do the dealing. They ended up warrantying it after I talked to them in a civil calm way and let them explain their side to me.

This might not have anything to with this and I am just rambling.
 

SuspectDevice

Turbo Monkey
Aug 23, 2002
3,944
35
Roanoke, VA
But, how is one Chineese made ti frame crap, and another one from the same factory not crap? What is crappier about the newer Ti frames from them?
 

Polandspring88

Superman
Mar 31, 2004
3,075
0
Broomfield, CO
SuspectDevice said:
But, how is one Chineese made ti frame crap, and another one from the same factory not crap? What is crappier about the newer Ti frames from them?
I think the problem he is having is that they are replacing his Ti frame with one of the 6061 alloy ones.
 
Jun 28, 2006
4
0
GotMyGED said:
Well, I have just experienced the worst customer service ever. I thought small family owned bicycle companies were supposed to have superior customer service compared to industry leaders like trek, giant, and specialized. BUT I WAS WRONG.

Flyte Bicycles doesn't care about their customers.

Long story in a short version:
The customer service rep told me to send in my frame so he could take a look at a non-essential piece that had broken off. The frame I sent in was a lightweigt Airborne XC hardtail. (Flyte used to be under the name Airborne). The customer service rep received the bike, then called me and said it was defective and that he was going to replace it with a flyte frame. I told him not to worry about it, just to send me my frame back and that i would pay for shipping, due to the fact that the flyte frame was not of equal quality.

The customer service rep then informed me that he could not send my bike back, and that i would receive this POS frame in a week.

I am pretty pissed, I was mislead, didn't know i would never see my first mountain bike again if i sent it to those bastards. Now i am stuck with a frame that weighs almost a pound more, and has crooked decals on it.

I even talked to the president of the company he was an %#$hole.
We have to say that it is little surprising to see the derogatory comments made toward the Flyte Customer Service Department and the owner of Flyte in such a public forum. Statements like this do not come across as very professional. Typically we do not address private issues in a public forum, yet we feel the need to set the story straight and provide our side.

Once a customer returns a product to our company for warranty and the warranty is judged to be valid (weather it is a non-essential part or not), we cannot send the warrantee frame back to the customer.

This is an obvious legal liability. Should the customer continue using the frame and is injured due to the original warranty issue or any future failure on the frame, the company or persons who last had possession of the frame would be legally liable. This policy is no different than any other bicycle manufacturer; Trek, Giant, and Specialized included.

In this case the customer sent back his Aluminum Airborne Liberator (Original Retail $299.00) and was offered an Aluminum Flyte Celsius 6 + FSA headset (Original Retail $399.00) as a direct replacement at no additional cost to him.

The customer was not happy with this option and we offered a substantial discount on our Titanium Aresti frame. In fact we can still honor the quote that was given.

For someone in a public forum to not provide all the facts and to incorrectly state what transpired is not fair to both sides.

We find it humorous that our ‘customer service’ is judged to be bad only when the customer was not willing to be accepting of the options provided to him. We stand behind our products and want to ensure 100% customer satisfaction which includes insuring the products we sell are 100% safe. Unfortunately the Liberator that the customer originally purchased is no longer manufactured and we offered him the next best replacement option per our stated warranty polices:

“In the event FLYTE replaces a defective frame, a new frame of equal or greater value will be provided... The new frame may not be the exact model purchased, as warranty frame replacement is limited to FLYTE’s current stock and model assortment on hand at the time of warranty.” http://www.flyte1.com/soar/janette/policies.asp

To say that we don’t care about our customers is 100% wrong. Unfortunately due to liability issues we were not able to send the frame back to the customer. However we went above and beyond and replaced the warranty frame with a new frame of a higher value and offered a discount for an upgrade to a Ti frame.

We are sorry that you are upset and decided to move this to a public forum. If you would like to continue this discussion directly please feel free to give us a call at 888-652-8624 or email us at sales@flyte1.com.
 
Jun 28, 2006
4
0
GotMyGED said:
Actually, that is no longer true. Huffy filed for bankruptcy last year, and since they were the major shareholder of Airborne, they could no longer use the "Airborne" name due to legal issues.

That is the story that the airborne rep gave me last september right before he lost his job.
The above statment is actually wrong. For the correct information please see the following link.

http://www.flyte1.com/soar/janette/airborne-faq.asp

The customer service reps that have been here since May of last year (one of them has actually been here 4 years this year) are still working here by the way.
 

trailhacker

Turbo Monkey
Jan 6, 2003
1,233
0
In the hills around Seattle
Flyte Bicycles - welcome to the world of the internet where one person can make things pretty messy for someone else with some effort (google "stolen sidekick", its pretty interesting). Taking it public is sometimes the only way to get a satisfactory result. Also, he is a consumer so being "proffesional" isn't required from him?
Good to see you took the time to respond to this and are still offering to stand behind the original offer even after being tarred and feathered.

So lets see if I got this right from Flyte Bicycles perspective. GotMyGED sent back a Alu. frame with some issues. You offered to replace it with a higher priced frame (with the price of materials going sort of crazy right now I have wonder if in fact higher priced does equal higher quality?). You can't send him back the original frame for liability reasons (seems reasonable considering we haven't heard what the problem was). He wasn't happy with this option and also declines your option of an upgrade to a Ti frame which he says you didn't offer him in the initial post.
Have I gotten this right so far?

If what Flyte says is only mostly true it sounds like GED should get on the phone with them and get taken care of.

P.S. Not to be a bike snob or anything, but this seems like a lot of drama over a $300 frame?
 
Jun 28, 2006
4
0
trailhacker said:
welcome to the world of the internet where one person can make things pretty messy for someone else with some effort (google "stolen sidekick", its pretty interesting). Taking it public is sometimes the only way to get a satisfactory result. Also, he is a consumer so being "proffesional" isn't required from him?
Flyte Bicycles -
The professional comment is from the fact that GotMyGED is/was working at a bike shop when he purchased and warrantied the frame.

trailhacker said:
Good to see you took the time to respond to this and are still offering to stand behind the original offer even after being tarred and feathered.
Flyte Bicycles -
No Problem

trailhacker said:
So lets see if I got this right from Flyte Bicycles perspective. GotMyGED sent back a Alu. frame with some issues. You offered to replace it with a higher priced frame (with the price of materials going sort of crazy right now I have wonder if in fact higher priced does equal higher quality?). You can't send him back the original frame for liability reasons (seems reasonable considering we haven't heard what the problem was). He wasn't happy with this option and also declines your option of an upgrade to a Ti frame which he says you didn't offer him in the initial post.
Have I gotten this right so far?
Flyte Bicycles -
Pretty much spot on with the chain of events (which by the way happened 2 months ago). His frame was sent back to us in early May and I believe he had the new frame within 7 business day (I could be mistaken on the time frame but I am pretty sure it is close to that).

You have to keep in mind that irregardless of what the bike was sent in for, the frame was broken and it should not be ridden. As stated above if something were to happen to the frame and GotMyGED was injured it could potentially end up as our fault if we woudl have sent it back to him. It is avoding a potential future legal issue.

trailhacker said:
If what Flyte says is only mostly true it sounds like GED should get on the phone with them and get taken care of.

P.S. Not to be a bike snob or anything, but this seems like a lot of drama over a $300 frame?
 

GotMyGED

Monkey
Mar 29, 2006
187
0
Knoxville
All I am saying is that I spoke to the president of the company and said "just do me a favor and send me my frame back, you know just as well as i do that the safety of the frame is not in jeopardy."

The customer service representative never told me that if i send my frame back for review I would never see it again.

I understand your policy of not sending back defective frames, which is why i asked for a personal favor.

I did not intend to post anything on the internet about my experience, until i received the replacement frame which to my disapointment:
1. Weighed almost 1 pound more than my old frame.
2. Had stickers and decals on it that were peeling off and crooked.

If a customer is not pleased, yet within reason, is that still considered good customer service?
 
Jun 28, 2006
4
0
GotMyGED said:
All I am saying is that I spoke to the president of the company and said "just do me a favor and send me my frame back, you know just as well as i do that the safety of the frame is not in jeopardy."
Weather you would consider it a favor or not we still, due to legal issues, can not send back a broken frame.

GotMyGED said:
The customer service representative never told me that if i send my frame back for review I would never see it again.

I understand your policy of not sending back defective frames, which is why i asked for a personal favor.

I did not intend to post anything on the internet about my experience, until i received the replacement frame which to my disapointment:
1. Weighed almost 1 pound more than my old frame.
2. Had stickers and decals on it that were peeling off and crooked.

We can't help that the new frame is heavier than your old one. It is a new design and it is made at a different factory. We do not make your frame any more. If we did we would have replaced it with that. We replaced your frame with our most up to date product.

It is not clear to me how the decals are peeling off since they are under a Matte Clear coat and the frame is brand new.

If the decals were crooked why didn't you contact us and ask for another one. You have had almost 2 months to do this.

GotMyGED said:
If a customer is not pleased, yet within reason, is that still considered good customer service?
As of right now we have not had any contact with you since your conversation with the owner. How can you say that we have not given you good customer service. You have not even tried to contact us.

Sending a frame back to you that is broken and poses a potential future legal issue for us is NOT within reason.

Cody If you would like to talk furthur about this please give us a call or email us.

888-652-8624
sales@flyte1.com
 

binary visions

The voice of reason
Jun 13, 2002
21,646
397
NC
I think this thread is done.

GotMyGED, you have said your piece and have apparently not contacted the company again to resolve your complaints. Flyte Bicycles has been very reasonable in responding and seems to be offering to resolve your issues in one of several manners. By "non-essential", I assumed that something like a cable stop was broken - Flyte Bicycles seems to be implying that the frame could be dangerous, which is certainly a liability for them.

I am locking this thread for the time being. If either of you have something further to say in the matter that you feel needs to be added, please feel free to PM me.

Flyte, welcome to Ridemonkey. I'm sorry this was what brought you here, but stick around - it's great to have industry guys here. They provide a lot of valuable insight.
 
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