Penn State Industries

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crokett

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Par for the course. I only order from them when I can't find what I want elsewhere. I ordered something the 27th. It still has not shipped. I called their offices this morning, the offices are closed so presumably they aren't working on getting orders out today, which means it will be at least Monday until it ships, then likely another week until my order arrives. In the past I made the mistake of paying for their 'expedited shipping'. An order that I paid for 2 day shipping took 4 days to actually ship. They didn't see anything wrong with that.
 
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howsitwork

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I can only comment based on a few orders that I had shipped to me for arrival in USA on holossy but they were excellent and got,it to me as required.

I find the current situation , and season , have added somewhat to some deliveries but not to others?

Hope it work out for you shortly.

Happy New Year
 

johnjohnson42

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That's only one of the reasons that I've gotten to the point where I only order from them when I absolutely have to... and it's usually when no one else on the entire planet has what I'm looking for.
 

crokett

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I can only comment based on a few orders that I had shipped to me for arrival in USA on holossy but they were excellent and got,it to me as required.

I find the current situation , and season , have added somewhat to some deliveries but not to others?

Hope it work out for you shortly.

Happy New Year
Penn State has always been slow for me. I've never had an order from them take fewer than 3 days to ship. A week is ridiculous. I switched to Woodturningz to get most of what PSI sells because I'd rather spend money with someone who does same or next day shipping.
 

crokett

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That's only one of the reasons that I've gotten to the point where I only order from them when I absolutely have to... and it's usually when no one else on the entire planet has what I'm looking for.
In this case, it's the collet chuck system. Beall sells one at twice the price. I have paid a slight premium to not have to deal with Penn State, but the Beall price is a bit much.
 

Wmcullen

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I typically order from Penn State. No complaints. But I will add I placed my first order with Woodturningz on Wednesday and was pleasantly surprised to get an email yesterday (Thursday the 30th) saying the order had shipped. Prices seemed great too.
 

pewink

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Just an FYI, ExoticBlanks is a PSI reseller and ships same day the order is received!!

Yes, I am one of the owners of ExoticBlanks!! AND I give free advice here, often. (OVER 24,000 times!)
I'm not sure I understand this statement. Are you expecting compensation for your advice?
Is it passive/aggressive marketing?
Please elaborate, so there's no misunderstanding.
 

JohnU

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I'm not sure I understand this statement. Are you expecting compensation for your advice?
Is it passive/aggressive marketing?
Please elaborate, so there's no misunderstanding.
I believe Ed was having fun with words. Lol. I think what he was getting at is the fact that he is a pen turner, selling pen making supplies so he is available to help with product questions and specifics, and is active here doing so without people have to deal with a closed or busy customer service department.

I order my PSI stuff through Exoticblanks because I can get a quantity discount on all of my sets combined regardless of manufacture, without paying shipping from several places to get what I want. It also usually arrives in 2-3 days and not weeks. Ed and Dawn are good people!
 

magpens

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@pewink

Yes, as John (above) said, Ed was playing with words to add a touch of humor. . You will often see Ed present here and participating in these forum discussions.

I have been buying pen-making supplies from Exotic Blanks through Ed for 12 years . . . absolutely excellent service and merchandise.
On top of that Ed is always ready, willing, and eminently qualified to answer questions on any matters related to pen-making.
I would highly recommend Exotic Blanks . . . including all interactions I have had with Ed and their other personnel.
 

jttheclockman

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Penn State is a good company and have gotten better over the years. Have to remember one important thing when everybody talks about time to get shipment. It comes down to two components and the first is you. Want an order than get it in before the exact day you need it. If you have a customer that wants it the next day ditch that customer in a hurry. We are living in a different time these days. Second is just because the vendor gets it in the mail system it is now in the hands of whatever mail system used and the vendor has no control so please do not mention I get better and faster service here or there. I have seen it many ways from both vendors mentioned here. Also the weather, location and country it is going are factors. Now with PSI you have to want the type of pen kits they sell. Other vendors may have better quality kits that fit your needs so because of one slow order do not judge a vendor. My suggestion is do as I do spread your money around and use multiple vendors. One vendor does not carry all kits. Just saying.
 

crokett

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To be clear I understand shipping times when a package leaves a business. I also understand that once a package leaves a business that business doesn’t have control over the shipping company. I don’t do much business with Penn State because it consistently takes 4-5 days to ship an order after I’ve placed the order. This particular order is going to take at least a week. Whether I need it sooner Than that is irrelevant to me. It’s bad business to take that long to process an order. When I have a choice I choose to reward other businesses that ship more quickly.
 

ed4copies

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@pewink

Yes, as John (above) said, Ed was playing with words to add a touch of humor. . You will often see Ed present here and participating in these forum discussions.

I have been buying pen-making supplies from Exotic Blanks through Ed for 12 years . . . absolutely excellent service and merchandise.
On top of that Ed is always ready, willing, and eminently qualified to answer questions on any matters related to pen-making.
I would highly recommend Exotic Blanks . . . including all interactions I have had with Ed and their other personnel.
Made me think!!!

Yes, ExoticBlanks was founded here on IAP when Dawn asked a couple pen-blank casters to send a few blanks and we would try to consolidate the shipping costs for the IAP membership!! That was December, 2008!!! Did I expect to get paid for my comments? IF SO, I would have been sorely disappointed having made those comments in proliferation from 2005!!

No, I enjoy helping penmakers! I get a sense of satisfaction from solving penmaking problems and sharing that information.
 

jttheclockman

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To be clear I understand shipping times when a package leaves a business. I also understand that once a package leaves a business that business doesn’t have control over the shipping company. I don’t do much business with Penn State because it consistently takes 4-5 days to ship an order after I’ve placed the order. This particular order is going to take at least a week. Whether I need it sooner Than that is irrelevant to me. It’s bad business to take that long to process an order. When I have a choice I choose to reward other businesses that ship more quickly.
And those other businesses maybe 1/4 of the size too. But that is what is great and this was not always the case. Very few vendors to choose from back in the beginning days of this hobby. Now there are many more.
 

penicillin

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Thank goodness Ed doesn't get paid for his helpful comments!! If Ed got paid a nickel for every helpful comment he has posted here (and elsewhere), he and Dawn would have retired to their own private island ... and where would we be without Exotic Blanks? :-(
 

jrista

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I try to spread the money around... I've bought from quite a lot of sellers in 2021. Exotic Blanks, of course, but also WoodTurningz, Woodcraft, Rockler, PSI, Bear Tooth Woods, PeachTree, WoodPenPro, Timberbits, Crooked Mill, The Wood Turning Store, and others... I've found PSI & Rockler in particular, seem to be slower on the "we actually shipped it" front. I don't know why, given their size, maybe it is simply BECAUSE of their size, they may just get more orders as they are known by everyone? Had some slower shipping times from WoodPenPro, however I believe he is in Hawaii, and the whole pacific shipping debacle most likely caused the slowness there.

I have also bought from sellers here on IAP and on Etsy, Ebay. A lot of these companies are run by individuals are families, and sometimes this is not the only thing they do, they often have other jobs. I know some sellers I've bought from have actually stated on their Etsy store pages or in other copy that they ship only on specific days (i.e. Monday and Thursday, for example). I don't have customers breathing down my neck for pens, and the few who have actually ordered pens from me have ordered well in advance of when they needed them, which made it easy on me.

I pretty much order with the assumption "It will get here when it gets here" these days. My primary goal is to just make pens, put em up on a store, and let 'em sell. Because I have a day job, I may in fact have to have a "I ship Mondays and Thursdays" policy myself, when the time comes, as I don't know if I'll be able to ship every day of the week.

Its a crappy world out there for anyone shipping anything... I was just at the post office today asking about the most cost effective way to ship small things like pens. The cheapest options were the flat rate boxes and envelopes, which bottom out at $8.45 and $7.94. Would be so nice if there were little 2"x2"x8" padded boxes for $3.95 each that we could ship our pens in. ;) Its a terrible environment for anyone who has to ship these days...
 

Curly

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We have become quite spoiled, expecting our order to be shipped almost instantly and in our hands in a day or two. It’s the holiday season and most companies are running with a skeleton staff, if not closed completely so their workers can spend time with family. Maybe we should remember the good old days when we mailed a letter to a company asking for a catalog, waiting a couple weeks before it arrived, filling out the order form and enclosed a check, mail it it and waiting several more weeks before the package arrived in the mail.
 

dogcatcher

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I have ordered from just about every supplier in the past 15 years. When I was still actively making and selling pens I tried to keep at least a 6 months supply on hand but preferred a year or more supply. This way I got both the benefit of the volume discounts and the benefit of not paying shipping charges all of the time. I saved n kit costs and shipping costs. If I was still real actively making and selling, with today's shipping costs and the problems with inventory I would increase my own kit inventory,

I usually ordered in the early months of the year and would not order again unless my predictions of sales were way off and I needed something right then. Impulse buying is sometimes wasted money, if a new kit came out, I was always one of the last ones to try it. I also limited my number of different kits I offered, I considered my pen turning a hobby that was pretty much self supporting. For those that order all of the time paying shipping for small orders you are wasting money.
 

jrista

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I have ordered from just about every supplier in the past 15 years. When I was still actively making and selling pens I tried to keep at least a 6 months supply on hand but preferred a year or more supply. This way I got both the benefit of the volume discounts and the benefit of not paying shipping charges all of the time. I saved n kit costs and shipping costs. If I was still real actively making and selling, with today's shipping costs and the problems with inventory I would increase my own kit inventory,

I usually ordered in the early months of the year and would not order again unless my predictions of sales were way off and I needed something right then. Impulse buying is sometimes wasted money, if a new kit came out, I was always one of the last ones to try it. I also limited my number of different kits I offered, I considered my pen turning a hobby that was pretty much self supporting. For those that order all of the time paying shipping for small orders you are wasting money.

I actually do that, order when there are sales and the like, and try to order a number of kits at a time during those sales, to get stock on hand. I'm brand new, though, even though I turned my first few slimlines in 2020, I really got started Summer 2021, and I am still finding my way, figuring out what kits there are, how they look and feel and assemble, how easy they are to work with, etc.

I think, once I really do find my footing, I'll probably whittle down the range of kits I buy to those that really sell and/or those that I really like to work with.
 

MedWoodWorx

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Nov 23, 2021
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Greece
i can't help it but smile when reading your comments. It takes one month for pen supplies to arrive in Greece. To be exact i received a couple days ago a packet from taylor's mirfield that i ordered in early october.
Covid changed everything in terms of shipping times as well as costs.
 

magpens

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i can't help it but smile when reading your comments. It takes one month for pen supplies to arrive in Greece. To be exact i received a couple days ago a packet from taylor's mirfield that i ordered in early october.
Covid changed everything in terms of shipping times as well as costs.
@MedWoodWorx
Thanks for your comments; I have often wondered how you overseas pen-makers have been managing in these difficult times.
 

howsitwork

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Made me think!!!

Yes, ExoticBlanks was founded here on IAP when Dawn asked a couple pen-blank casters to send a few blanks and we would try to consolidate the shipping costs for the IAP membership!! That was December, 2008!!! Did I expect to get paid for my comments? IF SO, I would have been sorely disappointed having made those comments in proliferation from 2005!!

No, I enjoy helping penmakers! I get a sense of satisfaction from solving penmaking problems and sharing that information.
Ed

Ive never bought from you so can’t comment on that aspect BUT I can comment on the many, varied and ALWAYS helpful posts you put up. It’s always good to get another perspective on things .

The one bad thing about forums is no one can predict what people read into comments , good,or bad, I am NOT criticising anyones opinion, or views here . Generally it’s a great , helpful community and those that want to take offence usually do and then exit. Each to their own.

I wish everyone a Healthy, Happy New Year.

stay safe and sane ( and I think this hobby helps with that 🤔 except when things go awry and that’s when we need each other guys and girls )
 

TonyL

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Maybe their (PSI) inventory is sitting on a ship off one of our coasts?

Regarding Exotics, I have found his advice to be not only excellent, but incredibly honest.
 

crokett

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And those other businesses maybe 1/4 of the size too. But that is what is great and this was not always the case. Very few vendors to choose from back in the beginning days of this hobby. Now there are many more.
what does size have to do with anything? If a business can't serve its customers in a timely manner then it has a problem that it needs to fix.

I am in customer service, so I'm sensitive to both good and bad customer service. I ordered a part for one of my routers the week before Christmas. About an hour after I submitted the order I got an email from the company asking me to call them. It was going to take 2 weeks or so to get the part. They wanted to know what I wanted to do about it. I called them and decided to leave the order with them. I expect it to take longer than two weeks but this router hasn't worked in over a year, a few more weeks won't matter and I try to reward good customer service. The real issue I have with PSI is not knowing when the order will ship. I can't make plans to cancel the order and find the item elsewhere, or plan around not having what I ordered if I don't know if/when I'm going to get it.
 

TonyL

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Maybe, but until the offices open again I can't find out. The item I ordered isn't listed as out of stock.

My comment was a half-joke.

Interestingly, when I did buy from them, I was surprised at how quickly my goods arrived (either free shipping or standard shipping). I haven't purchased from them since early 2021; maybe much has changed.
 

monophoto

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- - - it consistently takes 4-5 days to ship an order after I’ve placed the order. This particular order is going to take at least a week.


My experience with Penn State has been quite different, and I've placed a number of orders with them over the past 10 years. I don't recall them every taking more than a day or two to ship and order, and my most recent order shipped the same day I placed the order.

I wonder if the fact that the order was placed on the first business day after Christmas, in the week when many people take off to burn their remaining vacation, could be a factor here.
 

Woodchipper

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FWIW, I had a hobby gunsmithing business many years ago. I had to order a part for an Italian shotgun. Don't recall l the specifics but it seemed to take a decade to get it.
So many variables in ordering, filling the order and shipping. Some places ship the same day if the order is received before a certain time of day and it's in stock.
A local restaurant had two servers for the entire place! Obviously, service was slow but patrons took that into account and tipped generously for the efforts of the servers.
 

pewink

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Thanks for the clarifications. The wording just seems odd.
Greenie vs. veteran members.
 

jttheclockman

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what does size have to do with anything? If a business can't serve its customers in a timely manner then it has a problem that it needs to fix.

I am in customer service, so I'm sensitive to both good and bad customer service. I ordered a part for one of my routers the week before Christmas. About an hour after I submitted the order I got an email from the company asking me to call them. It was going to take 2 weeks or so to get the part. They wanted to know what I wanted to do about it. I called them and decided to leave the order with them. I expect it to take longer than two weeks but this router hasn't worked in over a year, a few more weeks won't matter and I try to reward good customer service. The real issue I have with PSI is not knowing when the order will ship. I can't make plans to cancel the order and find the item elsewhere, or plan around not having what I ordered if I don't know if/when I'm going to get it.
What is a Timely Manner. Size of a business especially these days can mean alot. Less staff because of covid, more orders going out than a smaller vendor. Hey if you have a problem with PSI use this as a reason to move on to the many other vendors out there. There are vendors that sell PSI kits as mentioned above. Good luck.
 

jrista

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What is a Timely Manner. Size of a business especially these days can mean alot. Less staff because of covid, more orders going out than a smaller vendor. Hey if you have a problem with PSI use this as a reason to move on to the many other vendors out there. There are vendors that sell PSI kits as mentioned above. Good luck.

Yeah, it is a really rough time to be in any business where most or all of your product is shipped. It is not only hard to keep as many people working in warehouses and the like due to "pandemic" mandates and lockdowns and the like, but there is a massive worker shortage as well, and that is all on top of the supply chain and shipping issues.

Its a rough world. And, as someone mentioned earlier in the thread, we are so spoiled these days thanks to the next day (even less than 12 hours) shipping times we've become used to thanks to the likes of Amazon. (Still blows my mind when I order something in the evening, and its on my doorstep the next morning...almost doesn't even feel right!!) It is actually rather amazing that things are still clocking along as smoothly as they are, given what is going on at our west coast ports. I have to applaud many of the vendors I use, including PSI, for buffering us from many of the REAL effects of those backlogs. Sometimes there is a kit I'd like but can't find...but, overall, Ed @ ExoticBlanks, Ryan @ WoodTurningz, etc. have really done an amazing job keeping the popular stuff in stock and shipping things out as quickly as they can.
 

jttheclockman

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Yeah, it is a really rough time to be in any business where most or all of your product is shipped. It is not only hard to keep as many people working in warehouses and the like due to "pandemic" mandates and lockdowns and the like, but there is a massive worker shortage as well, and that is all on top of the supply chain and shipping issues.

Its a rough world. And, as someone mentioned earlier in the thread, we are so spoiled these days thanks to the next day (even less than 12 hours) shipping times we've become used to thanks to the likes of Amazon. (Still blows my mind when I order something in the evening, and its on my doorstep the next morning...almost doesn't even feel right!!) It is actually rather amazing that things are still clocking along as smoothly as they are, given what is going on at our west coast ports. I have to applaud many of the vendors I use, including PSI, for buffering us from many of the REAL effects of those backlogs. Sometimes there is a kit I'd like but can't find...but, overall, Ed @ ExoticBlanks, Ryan @ WoodTurningz, etc. have really done an amazing job keeping the popular stuff in stock and shipping things out as quickly as they can.
Heck Lowes was or is still running a great sale on an air compressor kit with 3 guns ( Bostich) and I was in need of a new set up so I went to put order in and they do not have them any more. So I went on Amazon and when I looked they had same deal and had 7 units left. In about 1/2 hour they were down to one so I got that one. Now I see they are still running the sale but it is with a notice that it is one to 2 months to get in. This is the way everything has been going. So who knows what and when you can get things. While designing my kitchen and Bath this summer I had to change a few things a couple times because of availability. So it is a different world we live in.
 

boatemp

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There can be many circumstances that dictate the time of delivery. I've gotten good and bad service from PSI and others. Recently it took 10-11 days for a supplier to let me know that an item I ordered was on back order. The company is known for its promptness. Was my order overlooked? Was someone sick? Stuff happens that is sometimes unavoidable. If this was an isolated incident then you suck it up. If it something that happens often, move on.
Happy New Year!!!
 

dogcatcher

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Maybe, but until the offices open again I can't find out. The item I ordered isn't listed as out of stock.
Just about every company is short staffed from the middle of November to the end of December. Holiday vacations of regular employees and usually staffed by fill in by in experienced seasonal help. people that wait until the last minute to order will get no sympathy from the company or me.
 

boatemp

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I actually do that, order when there are sales and the like, and try to order a number of kits at a time during those sales, to get stock on hand. I'm brand new, though, even though I turned my first few slimlines in 2020, I really got started Summer 2021, and I am still finding my way, figuring out what kits there are, how they look and feel and assemble, how easy they are to work with, etc.

I think, once I really do find my footing, I'll probably whittle down the range of kits I buy to those that really sell and/or those that I really like to work with.
PSI is having a 40% sale now. I think it may be worth the wait in an instance like this. Time to stock up for the future of your not in a hurry.
 

crokett

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Just about every company is short staffed from the middle of November to the end of December. Holiday vacations of regular employees and usually staffed by fill in by in experienced seasonal help. people that wait until the last minute to order will get no sympathy from the company or me.
So you've never needed something in a hurry and had to order at the last minute due to unforseen circumstances?

In any case, this is not a last minute order. This is a tool that I want for a project that will be a gift in the middle of January. I didn't know I'd need the gift until the day before Christmas. I ordered it the first day Penn State was open. I figured that 3 weeks is plenty of time, even for Penn State. Now I'm not so sure. I'm already trying to figure out how I will do it without the tool I ordered, since I don't expect it to arrive before this coming weekend like I planned, so I'll have to at least start the project without the tool.

For everyone advising that there are other vendors than Penn State, I know there are. I specifically don't use Penn State unless I have to. For this In this case, it was use Penn State or pay 100.00 more for a competitor's tool. You may think that 4 or 5 days after you order for something to ship (not arrive at your house but actually leave the business) is reasonable. I don't. At least not on a continual basis, which seems to be every time I order from Penn State, and the orders are/were not all around the holidays. I've seen posts from folks saying they've never had a problem. I always have. I quit using Penn State years ago because of their slow shipping. I'll be waiting for at least a week before my order ships.
 

jrista

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So you've never needed something in a hurry and had to order at the last minute due to unforseen circumstances?

In any case, this is not a last minute order. This is a tool that I want for a project that will be a gift in the middle of January. I didn't know I'd need the gift until the day before Christmas. I ordered it the first day Penn State was open. I figured that 3 weeks is plenty of time, even for Penn State. Now I'm not so sure. I'm already trying to figure out how I will do it without the tool I ordered, since I don't expect it to arrive before this coming weekend like I planned, so I'll have to at least start the project without the tool.

For everyone advising that there are other vendors than Penn State, I know there are. I specifically don't use Penn State unless I have to. For this In this case, it was use Penn State or pay 100.00 more for a competitor's tool. You may think that 4 or 5 days after you order for something to ship (not arrive at your house but actually leave the business) is reasonable. I don't. At least not on a continual basis, which seems to be every time I order from Penn State, and the orders are/were not all around the holidays. I've seen posts from folks saying they've never had a problem. I always have. I quit using Penn State years ago because of their slow shipping. I'll be waiting for at least a week before my order ships.

It is not necessarily that it is reasonable...it is more that it is just the reality of the situation.

1. Holidays, short staffing/closures
2. Supply issues
3. Shipping issues
4. Continued lockdowns exacerbating all of the above

It is not reasonable. Its unreasonable, just as unreasonable that everyone everywhere has to deal with any of this in this day and age.

Its just the reality of the situation... Now, your anecdote about it happening every time. Sorry, but at this point in this thread, I would really need to see hard concrete evidence that that is indeed the situation...that EVERY time you order from PSI, it takes them 4-5 days to even ship. Either you are ordering at bad times (i.e. just before a long weekend where they CAN'T ship until 4 days down the road), or something is fishy here...
 

crokett

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Now, your anecdote about it happening every time. Sorry, but at this point in this thread, I would really need to see hard concrete evidence that that is indeed the situation...that EVERY time you order from PSI, it takes them 4-5 days to even ship. Either you are ordering at bad times (i.e. just before a long weekend where they CAN'T ship until 4 days down the road), or something is fishy here


I don't count weekends in that 4 day shipping. I only count business days. I expected that not everyone would agree with my point of view in this thread. That’s fine. I did not expect this response. A few members in this thread said they get consistent 1-2 day shipping from PSI. I never have. That’s why I stopped using them unless I had to. However I’m not asking those members for proof. I thought I would receive the same courtesy. Apparently not.
 
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boatemp

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I don't mean to be contrary but if you know it's going to take X amount of time that you say it took "every time" then plan on it. What makes you think this time will be any different? Why frustrate yourself. "Hope for the best, expect the worst and settle for anything in between."
Happy New Year!!
 
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