About 20 years ago, I purchased a lovely pair of Nikon binoculars, the 7×50 Ocean Pro (see PS August 2003 online), for my father for Christmas. Over many years of use, they became slightly damaged after being dropped on one eyepiece. This year, I sent them to Nikon (www.nikon.com) to be repaired. They made them perfect again, with a new strap and case, for no charge, not even shipping. Their lifetime warranty really is for a lifetime. I look forward to another 20 years of use, and then passing them along to my son. The best is always the best.
My 1984 Tartan has original Beckson Marine portlights that needed to be re-bed, and their hardware was corroded and not usable. Jay, in Becksons customer service department (www.beckson.com), took the time to help me research new hardware and shipped the items right off, so I could complete the maintenance. In the hustle of spring commissioning, I had misplaced the new hardware. When I called Beckson to re-order, they noticed I was ordering the same item, and they immediately discounted the replacements and shipped them the next day. When the misplaced items were found a few weeks later, Beckson happily took the return and credited my account. This company did everything possible to accommodate me (for my mistakes) and couldn't have been easier to work with. What a terrific company with excellent people!
Paper Tiger, Tartan 33R
Blue Sea Systems, ACR
I have high praise for Blue Sea Systems (www.bluesea.com) and ACR Electronics (www.acrartex.com). I dropped the locking ring to the Blue Seas 12-volt outlet into someplace unreachable during installation. Customer rep Lee Stephens sent me four replacements at no charge. When I called, a person answered, and there was no appreciable wait to talk to a tech!
Also, I sent ACR an old ACR Firefly strobe light (PS December 2010) that had suffered from corrosion and an internal plastic failure so that their engineers could examine the failed part. Unasked, they sent me a new, updated model for free. Customer service is alive and well in America!
Island Time, 1998 Hunter 410
Several years ago, PS reviewed options for stopping holding-tank odor. For those with holding tank ventilation challenges, Groco Marines Sweet Tank system seemed an appealing alternative. Our Sweet Tank has worked like a charm on our 1981 Catalina 30. The in-tank assembly is easily enough removed for periodic service. You need to remove, disassemble, brush, and re-assemble it every couple of months. At that interval, it is a 15-minute project. If you wait a year, even soaking in your favorite cola beverage will not break the bond between the brass tube and plastic fitting.
When this happened to my system, I asked Groco (www.groco.net) for a new plastic fitting. They said to send it to them, and they would fix it and return it. Instead, they sent me a new plastic fitting, gratis. I have a boat full of re-fit Groco valves and thru-hulls. I am very grateful for this kind service.
Bluebird, Catalina 30