Magnepan Service HORRIBLE???

I am now into my 5th week waiting for Magnepan to evaluate shipping damage to a pair of MG 3.7's. My wife and I paid Craters and Freighters to build a custom wood crate for them so they would not be damaged further by the trip from Richmond to Minnesota.

I know everyone will say they are a small company and I need to be patient but this is ridiculous to my mind. I have called 5-6 times and the seller has also called. The last time I called Shelia acted like she had never spoken to me before despite the previous phone conversations.

I know the MG 3.7's are supposed to be sensational speakers and I bought my first pair of Magnepans in 1975 but I am seriously considering flipping these if Magnepan ever inspects and repairs them. The aggravation simply is not worth it to me.

A month and I can not even get anyone at Magnepan to open the crate, inspect them, and give me a damage estimate to provide to FedEx who is ready to pay the claim. Unfortunately, they can't pay until Magnepan provides an estimate of the damage and then I have to wait for the actual repair.

I never thought I would feel this way about Magnepan but this current situation has changed my mind to a huge extent. This is just ridiculous the way I see it and I can see no good excuse for it.
This should get interesting....
I'm not sure I understand the situation. Are you saying you bought a pair of used Maggies and that they were damaged when the seller shipped them to you, prompting you to ship them on to Magnepan for the evaluation?

If so, I wonder whether Magnepan is put off that you purchased a pair of used speakers rather than new. Just a thought.

Surprised by your troubles, often it is the smaller companies that will be most quick to respond to a situation. Even if there response was to give you a time frame or they just don't want to bother with your problem. This a courtesy no matter where the speakers begun life with you. A little attention on there part could pave the way for future sales. By yourself and others.
I was a Magnepan dealer for many years and can truly say that Magnepan is a top-notch company, founded on customer service.

I would call and ask for either Steve Winey or Wendell Diller and relate your story to them. I can guarantee you, they will get to the bottom of this.

Magnepan really is an excellent, outstanding company.
Curious how cynical business will make you about stories like this. I'd bet Etmerritt33 has not given Magnepan any indemnification if litigation results from Magnepans findings. I've had a couple of occasions to send MG's in for repair over the past 25 years, no issues. But then I had no potential litgation complications, just straight forward its broke, fix it.
Etmerritt was a customer of mine some years ago whom I visited, and I'll vouch for him being a gentleman and a good person to do business with. I assume the speakers were purchased used, otherwise it's the dealer's problem to handle. I would be calling at least once or twice a week to get an answer so the claim can be settled before time runs out.
I think the explanation is that the Midwest is currently in the grip of a terrible drought, so everyone is kinda touchy.
My suggestion, based on a lot of professional experience in dealing with problems (as a lawyer): write a brief, and balanced letter to the President and a few other top executives at the company, explaining that you bought the speakers used, they were damaged in shipping, that the seller or carrier's insurance is covering, but that having gone to the trouble and expense of crating and shipping them to the company 5 weeks ago (or whenever), you have yet to get the necessary estimate. That you've called a number of times, and you need their help to get this sorted out quickly.
I presume you are going to have the company repair the speaker using the insurance money? You might want to ask them what the realistic timetable for that is, once you can have the insurance payment sent to them (in other words, encourage them to get you queued up for the repair quickly once the estimate is rendered and the payment for repair is made).
Thanks to everyone who responded (especially Brian). I bought the MG3.7's used from a very nice guy in New England. They were shipped via FedEx with ample insurance. I have a FedEx account and I arranged the shipping. When they arrived and we unpacked to set them up and quite literally the first thing my left hand touched was a completely loose aluminum trim rail on the top speaker. It appeared that the box was dropped on its side and on the corner and the other speaker appeared to not have been damaged.

I contacted Wendall and he told me that I definitely should send them both back to the factory to have them repaired and checked to make sure they are 100%. So, my wife and I had the custom wood crate made so we could lower the risk of additional damage going to Magnepan and to also lower the risk of damage during return shipping.

The cost to make this custom crate and to ship to Magnepan was close to $ 1K that we paid out of our pocket. This is the 5th week that the speakers have been in Magnepan's possession and they still have not even opened them for inspection. FedEx has inspected the damage and is ready to pay the claim but can't do so until Magnepan issues a repair estimate.

I am just so aggravated with Magnepan right now I can't stand it. As I said earlier I have talked to Wendall directly so he is aware of the problem I have.

What really blew my mind was when I called Shelia 3 weeks ago and she acted like she had never seen or heard of me before. This was after 4 or 5 previous calls to her.

This is week number 5 that Magnepan has had these speakers. I can not imagine it would take them more than an hour to assess the damage. We never unpacked the bottom speaker but there was no visual sign of damage.

I hope with this better explanation you can see why I am ticked. IMHO Magnepan should crate the 3.7's and 20.7's as they admitted to me that they experience the most shipping damage problems with the two larger models.

Here is a link to the pics of the damage if anyone is interested.

Tom, in my experience, while a phone call is good for a nudge, there is something about creating a written record that lights a fire under people.
I haven't dealt with Maneplanar since the early days, but they have a good rep. I would write the letter I described.
To Davide256's comment....This has nothing to do with any litigation and not sure where you got that notion from??

I filed a damage claim with FedEx the night we unpacked and discovered the damage. FedEx sent out their independent inspector and she filed a report and FedEx took responsibility for the damage and is willing to pay.

This has all been explained in detail to Magnepan. Shelia knew to expect a reuseable custom wood crate with a specific RA number painted on it.

So, here I am five weeks later with no idea on when I will get the estimate or more importantly when I will see the MG3.7's again.

this may or not may apply...but I have heard from a former owner that Magnepan only produces one speaker at a time to avoid any confusion or defects...that is a production run of a particular speaker for x amount of time...i assume weeks...this may also affect repairs...also...I have visited the factory...this is a small company...and they simply may be backed up with patient...this will work out..all the best...pc
Just curious. Why buy USEd speakers, then spend $1,000 just to make a crate?
This is the only part i wonder about.
For the $1,000 and the cost of shipping the used ones, and the cost of the used Speakers.. you could have just bought brand new ones...
Magnepan has a good rep as far as I know. My experience in the past sending things to them for repair or refurbish was good, but that was a few years back FWIW.

It is a small company so things might go slower than desired from time to time maybe?

I would talk to the proper customer rep on the phone and ask if they can provide an estimate of when they will be able to look at your speakers? Then follow-up again if you do not hear by then.
I'm tellin''s really hot and dry out there...the corn's-a-dyin'...mercy...mercy...
Can you cook corn in a magna pan. If the corn is a dying i am going to have to think of something else to cook in there. Let's seeeeeee. I think I will start a new thread on that one. Whoo! I though I wasn't going to solve that one.
Actually MN is one of the few midwestern states that has gotten flooded Duluth not too long ago....
Mapman, this has already been done multiple times

Elizabeth, The speakers were purchased used. I thought that FedEx could ship them without damage to Richmond, Va. Once they arrived damaged, my wife and I decided that it was worth the cost of a custom wood crate (about $ 400 of the $ 1000 I mentioned) to avoid a situation where we might encounter additional damage shipping to Magnepan for repair and that would complicate the FedEx damage claim and then we thought the worst thing would be to have them repaired and damaged again on the way back to Richmond.

Paranoid? Probably so but we wanted to find the shortest critical path to be able to get the speakers back so we can listen to them.

This crate is reusable so it will also benefit when we sell these. That might be sooner rather than later if Magnepan does not do something soon. My patience is running out.

I know this won't help in your present situation but I learned a long time ago that if something arrives damaged to send it back to the seller and let him deal with it.

Be patient, maybe this will get to Magnepan and they will act soon.
I know this won't help in your present situation but I learned a long time ago that if something arrives damaged to send it back to the seller and let him deal with it.

Not much help in this situation but, very good advice for all.

Before you sent them to Mag, did you ask/they give a time estimate?

I know, not much help now/here but for anybody dealing with anybody in the future, it's nice to know.

I was ready to take one of my vintage tuners to a repair shop for some dial lights. Before I could ask him how long, he said it would be 3 weeks before he would be able to get to it. I decided to wait for a better time.

Anyway, good luck, hope it works out to your eventual satisfaction.
It's summertime and people take vacations. Five weeks isn't a long time for a problem to be addressed. Magnepan's a fairly small company with a very good reputation, except about product deliveries. They can be slow.

My advice is to stay on top of them, but don't break into a sweat or otherwise get worked up.
07-24-12: Onemug
I was ready to take one of my vintage tuners to a repair shop for some dial lights....
Harry, if that is your 10B, you can easily replace the lights yourself. It takes 2 type 1847's. Here is one source.

Sorry to divert the thread.

-- Al
Markpao is right in..As a buyer use paypal.They have an unconditional 45 day return policy and if damaged in shipping have the carrier come get it.Its the sellers that has to deal with making them pony up.As a seller I now only use postal money orders or wire transfer,that 45 day return policy is retarded.I also find it odd that fed ex is actually paying the claim,I forget who their underwriter is but they say "decline" to everything so you may feel this deal is going now where but it could be a whole lot worse.
Please take 3 points away from Phasecorrect for ruining my drought humor thread. Also, I had UPS (insured) actually lose a sweet guitar amp I'd sold on Ebay...they were nice and STILL took about 3 weeks to pay me. For everything except the shipping...I guess they were being ironic.
Magnepan needs to recapitalize its business so it can offer exceptional customer service, otherwise it will ruin the band. There will be little left to sell as the need to fund Jim's retirement. Get with it.
Buconero117, I agree completely. Magnepan has just let itself evolve at its own pace but has not kept an eye to the times. They are set up so they can not deal with repairs in a timely manner but don't seem to recognize the problem with that. They could easily charge a little more for the speakers and add staff to deal with repairs. Just saying they are a small family owned business doesn't necessarily cut it in today's world.

I have a Merlin VSM-MXe based system which is extremely good. The only reason I was contemplating going back to Magnepan as my last system was due to my infatuation with Magnepan that started in 1975. I have only owned two pairs of conventional speakers in over 35 years of doing this. The Merlins and the Quadrature DSP-5a's. Lots of Magnepans, Soundlabs, Martin Logans and Acoustats in my past.

Magnepan told me on the phone that their primary shipping damage problems were with the 3.7's and 20.7's. The speakers have gotten progressive heavier over the years and IMHO the factory packing is not sufficient. I don't know why they just don't ship both the larger speakers in a reusable wood crate like Soundlabs? It could not cost that much more to have someone make them in Minn.

Never thought I would be this ticked with Magnepan.

To the person that asked why I just did not make the seller deal with this I don't have a good answer. I was just so stunned when we unpacked them to find the top speaker damaged that I was looking for the most expedient path to getting them 100% and really did not want to undo the deal. But, I knew after it registered that the box had been dropped and at least one speaker was damaged that I was looking at a long and aggravating process. It took a couple hours that night for it to sink in. In over 35 years of doing this I have never received damaged items until now.
I think anyone who has experienced the kind of frustration you have described has a right to expect more and every right to be angry. It is really a moot point that you should have made the seller deal with this in the first place. Magnepan needs to do right by you regardless. I think most of us recognize the value of customer service and get pretty frustrated if our repairs aren't handled in a timely fashion. I agree with many of the comments above and encourage Magnepan to rethink the value proposition associated with better packaging for shipment, good 5 way binding posts, better jumpers etc.

That said, I very much appreciate the net result of Magnepan's frugality. I've been running maggies for over 20 years, going from SMGa's to 1.6's to 3.7's. In each case, I could not find anything at 2x the price that matched sonic performance, and in all that time I did not need service once. I avoided shipping issues by either buying new or buying locally, and sold both the SMGa's and 1.6's locally. That is just a downside that I am willing to accept given the unique value of Magnepan products. I expect that when I replace the 3.7's, a likely path will be trade in at the local dealer for new 20.7's. If I went in another direction on replacements, I would likely only sell the 3.7's within a reasonable driving distance so I could personally deliver them to the buyer. I think it is just the nature of the beast.

In the end I do hope Wendel gets involved and makes this right for you.
Magnepan just called. They inspected the damage and both speakers were damaged, not just the top one. The tweeters are ok but they will need to replace the aluminum trim rails on both, the wooden spacers, and the socks have to be replaced. They are going to get a return shipping estimate and add that in and send me a repair estimate today hopefully. This syncs with our theory about FedEx dropping the box on its edge.

The kicker is that I was told it would take 3-4 more weeks to do this simple repair because warranty claims go in front of shipping damage claims. The speakers were delivered to Magnepan on June 25th so despite what they claim this is the 5th week they have had them so it appears I am looking at a total (if I am lucky) of 8-9 weeks total from June 25th not including the time to ship back to Richmond which will likely be about a week.

So, I'll be lucky to see them back by the end of August and that will be 3 months since the time they were purchased during the last week of May. Some of the time was wait time on my end as I could not ship to Magnepan until the FedEx inspector came by and that was a couple weeks after I filed the claim.

More later as this unfolds.
Does Magnapan know about this thread? I'm always amazed at how lame businesses can be about bad publicity. I wish there was a way to calculate the damage being done to Magnapan, and any other company ignoring the modern forum based wrath machines. I for one will remember this issue, and it's unlikely I'll ever share my cash with Magnapan.
Wow. I've been following this thread with interest. I've been the plant manager at a few different companies and Magnepan simply isn't doing the right thing by you. I understand about rules and policies but if I were in charge I'd take the extenuating circumstances into account. They're making a bad call by treating you this way simply because you didn't buy the merchandise from them, which should be irrelevant. They've been paid for the goods, now it's simply a matter of standing by the product. I swear by buying used, I've done so many times, but you've been thrust into a worst-case scenario. Hell, the extant of things found wrong made me wonder if the spkrs were 100% when you bought them!
Honestly, this morning I felt like she knew or someone has said something to her because her tone made me feel that way. I could have been imagining it but that is what my gut was telling me.

I love the company and the products. Audio Art here in Richmond was the biggest ARC and Magnepan dealer in the U.S. when I became involved in 1975. My first pair of high end speakers was the MG 2's. This is the first time I have ever needed anything from them relative to service.

But, this current experience has left such a bad taste in my mouth that I am not even sure if I will unpack them and set them up when they get back. I know that would likely be stupid but I just don't like being in this situation and not being able to do much about it. The problem is that I have other equipment sales and purchases contingent on these speakers so everything is on hold at the moment.

Thanks for your post. I've been so angry recently that I started researching speaker alternatives and as you say there aren't any good ones for anywhere near the price. I am wishing I had not sold the Soundlab M-2's we had.

What makes this worse is that I bought a Conrad Johnson preamp at the same time and that arrived damaged also and it has been sitting at Conrad Johnson (I drove to northern Va. and hand delivered it to CJ) for 5 weeks and not damage estimate either. The seller has refunded my money so I will also be in the market for another preamp. I also have a pair of MG-1.7's at home and if the CJ preamp had not been damaged I at least could have run the CJ preamp, the Krell FPB-300 amp, and the MG-1.7's while waiting for the MG3.7's to be fixed. But, that all got messed up too and we were out about $ 10K with nothing to show for it when we should have been enjoying the MG3.7's and the C.J. preamp with the Krell. The entire thing just got hosed up.

Some questions.....FedEx Ground? They are notoriously bad. Also, maybe I missed this, but did you not use paypal? Shouldn't the seller have been on the hook? And those are very large speakers--are the orig. boxes not sufficient, or appropriate? Seems not. I routinely "double box" much smaller speakers than that.

And $1K to ship them to Magnapan? But this whole mess is now their fault? I usually assume that buying used gear made by small companies, esp. big, heavy items, may be a big problem to get repaired.

I don't mean to pile on, but it seems like this this whole thing is a chain of bad packing, shipping, etc, & I'm not sure how Magnapan, no matter how slow their repairs, should be left holding the blame in all this.
Magnepan is old school in a sense they still use a tightly knit dealer network...unfortunately...since you purchased used...which comes with no are kind of relegated to "back of line" status...Magnepan...from what I gather...supports their dealer issues first...and since the OP speakers were purchased second hand...Magnepan technically doesnt owe him anything...they are simply doing him a favor....
Live and learn...

Customer service matters. Clear and concise communications always helps expedite things.

Its unfortunate but I'm not sure this case is all that unusual. Maybe other companies could do better, maybe not.if they can then bravo. I would like to know.
Magnepan makes extremely high value, high performance esoteric loudspeakers. They routinely receive outstanding reviews and frequently have waiting lists for new purchases. They are a small, privately held company that makes its products in the USA. Despite all of their decades long success people are now calling for them to change their business model because one person has complained. And that person purchased on the used market, not from a Magnepan dealer.

So if Magnepan becomes part of the Harman Group, outsources its manufacturing to China/Mexico, starts selling at Target/Walmart and releases a premium line of gold plated speakers starting at $70,000 will everybody be happy?
....and I've been waiting for 2 months now for 20.7s, might get them in August. Maybe I should start complaining how horrible Magnepan are? ya know, squeaky wheel and all...

Now to find out they are worried about repairing used/damaged 3.7s while I sit here with no 20.7s! The nerve of Magnepan. I want the 20.7s now!

Only in America... shootings, wars, high unemployment...
heck with that, where the hell are my speakers? :)
Besides better shipping coffins, crates or whatever, carriers need to start
handling things a lot more carefully, instead of dropping, throwing,
smashing or forklifting holes into ANY item.

I know time is $ but this stuff gets plain ridiculous, what are we paying for?
Magnepan makes a great product. I've owned several of their speakers including 3.6s. Made in USA.

The shipping company is most at fault here I believe and should get there deserved share of the blame.

I don't think one should be penalized for buying used. Magnepan made ther money once. And who knows maybe the 3.7s were sold to purchase the 20.somethings. (sorry don't remember number). But in general I don't think manufacturers should look at used market neagatively. What do they expect when we upgrade throw the 3.6s out in the trash heap? Almost every upgrade people make to their systems hinges on being able to sell what they have to purchase new. And there are plenty of people who could never buy high end stuff new, but because others can and will buy new they get the opportunity to own good stuff too.
So I think the used market is something for manufacturers to show concern for.

Magnepan should improve their shipping crates. I used to work for a dealer back in the MG-1 Improved days. It is pretty common for the Magnepan speaker on the bottom of the pile to get scrapped and holed by the forklift. The speakers were never placed on shipping pallets that I remember and had to be frequently checked for damage as they were delivered to the dealer which was a big pain.

Magnepans are extremely well priced and a known bargain, but . . . .
Magnepan could provide a wooden crate or framework around the speaker that would increase the shipping cost and cost to the custy and not loose their edge or marketing share. After all there is additional costs involved in repairing banged up speakers with forklift holes.
Phasecorrect, You need to check you reasoning again. Doing me a favor? I am the damn customer period. It should not matter whether I bought them used or not. I am a Magnepan customer with a pair of damaged speakers. Doing me a favor? Are you kidding me? Tom
The cost to ship back to Magnepan was about a grand. $ 400 of it was for the custom wood crate and the rest for ground shipping via Estes trucking with appropriate insurance. I did not want to risk additional damage on the trip to Minn that would further complicate my damage claim with FedEx.

My complaint and issue with Magnepan has nothing to do with the product or the cost. MY ISSUE IS WITH THE SERVICE which is very poor IMHO. I also maintain based on Magnepan's own comments about the 3 and 20 series speakers suffering the most damage issues that they should ship them in a wood crate like Soundlabs and just add to the price accordingly. That would eliminate a lot of this but these people seem to be stuck in the 1950's for some reason.

Also, I still have not received the repair estimate from Magnepan which I was promised to have emailed to me Tuesday afternoon. This completes the end of week 5.

I know it would be crazy to do but I am seriously considering flipping these when they do get back and not dealing with Magnepan again despite all the other positives they bring to the table. This is ridiculous from my perspective as a customer. At this point in my life I just don't have the patience for it.
Rx8man, I agree 100%. we all know accidents happen,but the track records of these companies are deplorable. How the hell do you drive a forklift tine right thru the goods?? Are these guys blind? There is so much room for improvement with these companies,and I think alot of it must start with employee attitudes. Its to the point that no matter how well something is packed, these clowns can find a way to destroy it.I hate them all.
"I don't think one should be penalized for buying used. Magnepan made ther money once..... "

Why do you look at it like the they are being penalized? There has to be an order to which a company puts there priorities. Do you want them to drop everything they're doing to accommodate this situation. They are obviously busy at this time- vacationing employees, new orders, warrantee work, and what not.
I'm sorry, these are the risks you take when you buy used. It's an unfortunate situation but it happens.
Winoguy, I'm right with ya, none of these threads would exist if things were handled carefully or properly.

You'd think they'd be sick of claims by now, it's only money.

Of course, that would be living in a dream world right?
Markpao, Regardless if they are used or not I am now their customer and I have a problem. In most great businesses they do what is necessary to get it fixed for the customer. I am now a full 5 weeks in and have yet to even get the cost estimate. What do you think the chances are now that I would ever buy a new product from Magnepan??

I have to wait 5 weeks for an hour's worth of inspection? The company is just not staffed properly and has an archaic view of customer service.
The way I see it it does not matter one way or the other if I bought these used or not. I am the customer in this situation and I have a problem. Top notch companies take care of customer's issues. Over a Magnepan speaker's life it is going to be owned by multiple people but only be sold new once. So, Magnepan needs to provide decent support to owners of these speakers new or used. Both the 1.7's and 3.7's were hot and the 3.7's had a waiting list. So, if someone decides for reasons entirely their own to sell a pair of 3.7's they can do so. This pair had the aluminum trim rails, better fuses, Cardas jumpers, and Mye stands at a good price so I jumped on them. I am now Magnepan's customer so I expect it to not take 5 weeks to get an estimate to repair shipping damage. Still ridiculous IMHO.
I don't think Magnepan is too concerned. In our current economic situation and in a business that has been on a downturn for quite awhile, this company writes on their website that their doing just fine and really don't need anyone to hurry to give them continued support. WTF? That kinda tells me that these people have made their money and this really isn't a business, it's a hobby. They do this just to keep busy. If it ever goes south, no biggie. They are backed up with work and they have no intention of changing the way they do things there. I recently traded my 3.6's for 3.7's. It was Sept 6th of last year. The 3.7's were delivered on Dec, 23rd. Merry Xmas. If I called to make a stink about it what would've happened? My local dealer has four stores. They had one set of 3.7 demos that they rotated. To this day they still don't have a 20.7 demo. So now I'm following the instructions on their website and travelling to the factory. They tell you to come there and they will arrange for you to hear the speakers in their lab. So I talked to Wendell and he tells me first that I'm supposed to make arrangements thru my local dealer and 2nd he can't gurrantee that the 20.7's will be available for demo. Really? I'm travelling there, with two weeks notice, to possibly spend $14000 and he can't gurrantee that they'll be available. What does it take for the place that makes them to plug them in? If I was smart I'd just keep the 3.7's and forget about it but I'm not smart. All indications are that the 20.7's are just short of heaven and if you want them you just gotta go with the flow. I still want to see the factory and I promised my wife a stop at the Mall Of America. If the 20.7's are NOT available I'm gonna tell'm just what I think about it and they'll just say sorry, next.
>>I know it would be crazy to do but I am seriously considering flipping these when they do get back and not dealing with Magnepan again despite all the other positives they bring to the table. This is ridiculous from my perspective as a customer. At this point in my life I just don't have the patience for it. <<

YEA, that'll show 'em who's boss!
Not every company has a customer first model...some value employees, stockholders, etc more...and whether one likes it or not...Magnepan has a right to conduct their company as they see fit...they have a loyal following and have been in business since the they are doing something right...