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Old 31-01-2014, 20:56   #1
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Location: Bribie Isl then permanently cruising from Feb 2013
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Kudos For Far East Sails

In August of last year (2013), I ordered a Code Zero, full radial cut reaching sail sail for my Lagoon 440 from Far East Sails (FES) in Hong Kong. While FES were a little longer in manufacture than anticipated, a major problem outside of the control of FES occurred in the shipping from Hong Kong to Athens and then to Rhodes, which saw the sail's delivery delayed until after I had to leave Greek waters for Turkey. Left with few alternatives, and against the advice of FES, I had the sail moved on to Turkey where I had arranged an address in Marmaris for its delivery. Without going in to all the messy and frustrating details, the sail became the subject of outrageous costs and charges by both Turkish customs and a third party customs agent. Despite some early concerns of how I felt abandoned (the subject of an earlier Cruiser Forum post bagging FES), FES has stuck by me, and I now have my new sail, albeit delivered to Australia where I am holidaying with family. Some important lessons about shipping from overseas have been learnt and I'd be happy to pass these on if anyone asks me to do so. Well done FES for sticking by me and honouring your commitment. Coldar1
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Old 31-10-2014, 21:49   #2
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

My experience was a little different. When dealing with Fareast Sails for a new main for my old 43 IOR boat, we went around a few times about what luff curve they would put on it to match my mast bend. In the end they submitted a design (a "layout") which was close enough for me and I agreed. When the sail came it was small and didn't match the design. The roach was far less than what was shown in the design. I did a lot of careful measurements but in the end they denied responsibility, and never addressed the fact that the sail was several inches smaller than their design (layout). They said it was my fault???

Now, I can send it back, but if they still deny any problem, what do I do? I would be out the shipping both ways and also have to pay import duties a second time when, and if, they finally returned the sail to me.

They are dodgy.
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Old 01-11-2014, 01:01   #3
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

I had a Asy spinnaker designed and built by them some 3 or 4 years ago.
I was very happy with the service in fact probably the best service i have ever recieved from a marine company. From initial contact to delivery was only about 3 weeks from memory, and they even paid the customs duty for me. I was a little sceptical as to what the quality would be like as it was about 1/3 the cost of an Ozzie built sail, but it needent have worried, the workmanship was as good as any western built sail, recommend them.
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Old 01-11-2014, 01:41   #4
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

Let me back-track a bit on my "Kudos for FES" post. I had decided not to amend my original post and let sleeping dogs lie, but to support your observations, let me tell you what transpired. I won't go in to lengthy detail; of how the sail was "lost" or its departure from Hong Kong was delayed due apparently to a Chinese Public Holiday, and the subsequent further delay caused by the shipper. It meant the sail arrived in Greece well after I had spent our planned time in Greece and had left for Turkey. I was left with no alternative but to have Far East Sails forward the sail to me in Marmaris, but it got caught up in customs who wanted me to pay basically the value of the sail to have it released. I refused, and after along email war, FES had the sail shipped back to HK, where it was then to come to me (now back in Australia for the European Winter). They lost the sail again, and told me they would make a new one. The new sail finally arrived in Brisbane just 4 days before I was returning to Turkey. I carried it in my back-pack the whole way back, and avoided any customs issues, but got hit for excess baggage. It was about 3 months before we could use the sail and on the very first hoist, I knew something was terribly wrong with the length and the shape. The luff was about 300mm too long, and rather that be able to assist us reaching - it fas supposed to be a Code Zero reacher, it collapsed in any wind forward of the beam. I had the sail properly measured in Crete and we confirmed it was well outside the promised dimensions. By the way, it had big "Clew" labels" / Stickers attached to both the clew and the foot of the sail.!!! FES finally admitted it had been made in a factory they had just bought and their "QA Process" hadn't yet been finalised. FES Paid the cost to have the luff shorten by a sail maker in Crete so we could at least get the luff taught. It is not a reacher, and is now solely used to fill the gap between our foresail and our para-sailer in winds to about 20 kts. As far as Far East Sails is concerned, I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole. In fact, I'd strongly recommend anyone having a sail made to do it through a local, reputable sailmaker who you can deal with directly, visit the sail loft, and be involved. A few dollars more perhaps, but without the heartache. We call our "reacher" "The Big Blue Lemon" It is coloured Blue, but the experience with FES has left a long lasting bitter taste in my mouth.
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Old 01-11-2014, 02:23   #5
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

Quote:
Originally Posted by coldar1 View Post
Let me back-track a bit on my "Kudos for FES" post. I had decided not to amend my original post and let sleeping dogs lie, but to support your observations, let me tell you what transpired. I won't go in to lengthy detail; of how the sail was "lost" or its departure from Hong Kong was delayed due apparently to a Chinese Public Holiday, and the subsequent further delay caused by the shipper. It meant the sail arrived in Greece well after I had spent our planned time in Greece and had left for Turkey. I was left with no alternative but to have Far East Sails forward the sail to me in Marmaris, but it got caught up in customs who wanted me to pay basically the value of the sail to have it released. I refused, and after along email war, FES had the sail shipped back to HK, where it was then to come to me (now back in Australia for the European Winter). They lost the sail again, and told me they would make a new one. The new sail finally arrived in Brisbane just 4 days before I was returning to Turkey. I carried it in my back-pack the whole way back, and avoided any customs issues, but got hit for excess baggage. It was about 3 months before we could use the sail and on the very first hoist, I knew something was terribly wrong with the length and the shape. The luff was about 300mm too long, and rather that be able to assist us reaching - it fas supposed to be a Code Zero reacher, it collapsed in any wind forward of the beam. I had the sail properly measured in Crete and we confirmed it was well outside the promised dimensions. By the way, it had big "Clew" labels" / Stickers attached to both the clew and the foot of the sail.!!! FES finally admitted it had been made in a factory they had just bought and their "QA Process" hadn't yet been finalised. FES Paid the cost to have the luff shorten by a sail maker in Crete so we could at least get the luff taught. It is not a reacher, and is now solely used to fill the gap between our foresail and our para-sailer in winds to about 20 kts. As far as Far East Sails is concerned, I wouldn't touch them with a barge pole. In fact, I'd strongly recommend anyone having a sail made to do it through a local, reputable sailmaker who you can deal with directly, visit the sail loft, and be involved. A few dollars more perhaps, but without the heartache. We call our "reacher" "The Big Blue Lemon" It is coloured Blue, but the experience with FES has left a long lasting bitter taste in my mouth.



Well thats certainly a turn around from your first post, from Kudos to condem in a flash
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Old 29-01-2016, 14:20   #6
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

How do you go from giving them to those to sticking by you to condemning them and saying the sale was not built correctly and is still not what you want?
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Old 29-01-2016, 15:19   #7
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

Quote:
Originally Posted by terabika View Post
How do you go from giving them to those to sticking by you to condemning them and saying the sale was not built correctly and is still not what you want?
Aside from it being two years ago, my guess is that the first post was how FES had managed to track and get the sail re-shipped to a different location after all the mess. The 2nd post was because when it finally came time to use it, it wasn't nearly correct in size and shape. So yes, kudos could be had for the shipping, but then condemnation after they get it and it's wrong anyway.
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Old 29-01-2016, 15:37   #8
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

It is ancient history as far as I'm concerned but as you have asked, I'll reply. FES finally admitted the sail had been made in a firm they had recently purchased on the Chines mainland, and whose operation didn't have any quality control in place. When the sail finally arrived, the sail came with the tack and the clew both clearly labelled "Clew". The luff was about 450 mm too long meaning we could never ever get it taught. We had it modified by a great young sail-maker in Crete. All he could really do was get the length right, but not the cut off the sail. The dimensions we supplied FES were correct, as confirmed by the sail maker in Crete. It would only sail with winds on or aft of the beam, though it was sold to us with great fanfare and promises of letting us use it to 40 degrees of the wind. Totally BS!
On the few occasions we did use it, we started to notice threads letting go, and finally, after the boat was stored for six months and we returned to cruising, the color had all run and the sail finally tore from top the bottom, this despite the sail being stored dry. I'll repeat my original note. My strong suggestion is stick with a local, well known and regarded manufacturer who you can talk to as required, and who will stand by you if something is amiss.
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Old 29-01-2016, 16:37   #9
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

I gather then, that they never offered you any compensation, nor apoligies? Or even the offer of another sail at half price, or similar.

I'm just curious. As, personnally, I've been a fan of using a local loft, almost without exception. Unless the sail was something big enough, & technical enough, that they needed to have one of their main (large) production hubs, build it.
But with the local loft being the one giving me/the boat, that one on one customer support.

That, & when you get to know the local guys. Aside from usually making some new, very good friends. More often than not, it also makes it a LOT easier to get emergency (after hours, or all nighter type) jobs done. Ditto on getting custom bits cranked out for you in short order. As in, you walk in with the job, & they stitch it up, while you wait.

Albeit, it helps to reciprocate on this relationship too. By taking potential customers of theirs out on your boat, to demo their wares. To act as a hand on a delivery for the loft. Or being a silent deck ape, doing the grunt work on a client's boat, when they're first testing out the new sail on a client's boat, etc.
And, of course, referring clients to them
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Old 29-01-2016, 16:46   #10
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Re: Kudos For Far East Sails

I would back up the comments made above. I had issues over delivery. I wasn't as interesting once I had paid the deposit.

When I eventually used the sail it didn't have the UV strip I paid for. Not wanting to revisit the aggravation of dealing with them I just paid (a third of the cost of the sail) to have one retro fitted.

Never again. Local loft with people I know and respect.
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