Poor Quality Control

There’s obviously a QC problem within the company. Really good technology, really poor execution for customer support, especially out of warrantee, or without a Pro support contract.

After more than a month of email trouble shooting, and winding up with a diagnosis of a laser problem, I just got a replacement for the unusable refurb I bought. That refurb arrived with so much internal dust that it looked like it had been assembled in a chicken coop. Plus a loose part of unidentifiable utility floating unattached within the cover.

The replacement was sent to the wrong address (billing not shipping), and when it finally arrived today, as we go into 7 weeks of troubleshooting I found…

It was shipped without the top styrofoam pads, so it was rattling around loose on its journey from Tennessee to Cambridge to my studio in Western Ma.

Either I’m several standard deviations from what they strive for, or they’re just not focused on post sale quality assurance. Likely the later.

This happens with highly successful, quickly growing companies, within rapidly expanding markets. They’ll address the field problems later, when it costs more to deal with the complaints case by case, than it does to fix them systemically.

Reid Hoffman talks about this in his Masters of Scale podcast “Let fires burn”. It’s a deliberate policy, not an accident.
Despite whatever nonsense they tell you when you complain. When the apology ratio within their responses hits 1:1, you know it’s not just you, or bad luck. They really don’t care, protestations aside.

If you are persistent, and rational, they will eventually make things better, and do some things to ameliorate your pain. But that’s frustrating and time consuming work, and you’re never really made whole. Nor will you ever know just how pervasive your issue is, within the user base.

You’ll only know that you’re not getting high quality goods, or service, or support.

Shameful stuff. They can get away with it for now, since they’re so far in the lead. But not forever.

That’s really disappointing
I haven’t had issues myself that would need repairs, but from what I’ve gathered here they’re very reluctant to have printers sent in for repairs, and that probably has created an effect where that whole repair process is just a mess.
As far as your experience goes, that makes me wonder who was actually doing the refurb, maybe it’s a third-party and they’re doing a bad job.

Things are variable… Our works machine has worked flawlessly since the day it arrived. My personal machine has been back to Hungary twice, and I now know a great deal of its innards as I have done at least a dozen repair and replace jobs on the support guys guidance. I have to say they have been excellent, as have the team at SimplyRhino who supplied the works machine and all our consumables… But from my experiences with my own machine, I would be extremely reluctant to buy an F3 until at least 6 months of real users have done some bug hunting. I did enough of that already…