The difference between Customers and Clients
These are Dangerous Products
Our Policy on Designs
Commissions, Deposits & Payments
Warranty & Disclaimer
1 - The difference between customers and clients:
A customer is someone who hands over money in exchange for an item, then leaves satisfied (hopefully) in their purchase. A client is one with whom we try to build a relationship so as to discover their overall needs so we can continue to service those need over time - hopefully, a long time. That said, we prefer to develop relationships with future clients rather than service one-time customers. It is our sincere hope that anyone with whom we transact business will become a client, even if they come to us initially as a customer.
2 - These are dangerous products:
Weapons are designed to kill, main, mar, spindle and mutilate. Treat them that way.
Respect them or they will not respect you. Handle them with care. Either hang them on the wall or on your hip for display, or use them with proper training and under the tutelage of a qualified instructor. Never use a weapon as a tree trimmer or salad shooter. We don't care what you've seen or read on the internet, and we don't care what your really cool friend told you.
Armor is meant to protect the wearer from harm, but it does not make the wearer invulnerable or impervious. That's a steel plate on your chest, not a big red "S". Never operate under the delusion that armor will save your life, because it was never meant to. It was meant to help save your life as an addition to training. By way of analogy, seat belts and air bags do not save lives - they lessen the likelihood that you'll die. There is a distinction there. Armor is the same. Wear it or display it at home, but do not enter combat (that includes "messing around" in your backyard) unless under the tutelage of a qualified instructor.
See a running theme here? I hope so. Proper training is essential in the reenactment and revival of combat arts. Living traditions are taught under highly controlled circumstances because they are dangerous. They are meant to be, after all. There is no more startlingly moronic statement than "Well, who would have thought swinging around a couple of a sword in the yard could be dangerous," but we have heard it time and time again!
3 - Policy on Designs:
Historically Accurate designs are those that existed and for which there is an example to study and reference. This may include documented museum pieces, references from period texts and the like. We will always entertain commissions for historically accurate pieces so long as any deviations are cosmetic in nature.
Historically Plausible designs are those for which no known example exists, but for which there is no necessary bar from existence. These might include the expansion or reasonable modification of a historically accurate piece, a mixture of period elements or a minor crossing of period lines (basket hilted rapier? ... swept hilt broad sword? ... a Spanish cuirass adorned with Aztec motifs?). In general, if there is no logical reason to assume the design would have been impossible then we will consider it. We enjoy working with historically plausible designs, but reserve the right to influence them towards accuracy of form and function.
Fantasy Designs are those which breech any and all logical historical examples. Either elements of the design never existed or the design is completely out of the historical framework. However, if the design itself is functional, safe, and in good taste, we will consider it.
We reserve the right to refuse to accept any design which we believe to be unsafe, implausible or simply in bad taste.
Yes, our opinions count.
4 - Commissions, Deposits & Payments - or, "How Money and Product Moves Around":
Production & Stock Items:
For production items that are in stock, we take payment (price plus applicable sales tax and shipping) and ship the item to you. For those production items we do not have in stock (and therefore must order) we generally take payment (price plus applicable sales tax and shipping) up front and have the item shipped directly to you. There are two exceptions to this, however. If either an item is especially expensive (over $1000 retail) or if the expected shipping date is to exceed 30 days, then we will take a 50% deposit, inform you of the ship date as soon as we know it, and will expect the remaining balance (remaining 50% of price plus tax and shipping) before the item is delivered.
As to custom work, we are happy to discuss your ideas, designs and thoughts. We will go over your rough ideas, initial sketches, and help to refine designs and ideas towards a finished product. That done, once a project is finalized and you want to commission it, then we issue a quote and require a 50% non-refundable deposit before any actual work can begin.
Once we receive that deposit, the work enters our queue and you're in line behind all of our current projects. Your space in line will never be moved or displaced without your prior knowledge and consent.
When the project enters the final stages (whatever they may be) we will contact the client to confirm final payment and shipping arrangements.
Once the project is completed and ready to ship, we will contact the client with a final invoice. At this time the client has 30 days to remit final payment (the remaining 50% of project price plus applicable tax and shipping). If payment is not received and correspondences with the client are unanswered, unpaid projects may be offered for sale on the general market.
That being our official policy, we are reasonable and understand that life interferes with our desires and projects. No problem - if there is a timing or money issue just talk to us. Communication is the key, and we will work with you. Our end goal is to get your project completed and to you, not to cackle maniacally as we offer up your project on eBay.
Payment Methods Accepted:
Currently, all payments may be made via money order or check, but either would have to clear before anything is shipped. At this time, we are not accepting credit cards. Though we do accept Paypal, this requires a 5% increase in any prices charged to offset Paypal's fees. Sorry.
5 - Warranty:
Concerning production pieces:
We fully support the manufacturer's warranty on all production pieces we carry. If there is a problem, please have your purchase records available when you contact us. For Hanwei pieces, the warranty is one year from the date of original purchase and covers defects in materials and workmanship.
Note: We are currently restructuring our relations with our suppliers and craftsmen (warranty terms being one issue up for negotiation), and until we have these arrangements settled, we can not detail specific warranty terms. For that reason alone, we are not offering any production items for sale.
Concerning custom work:
In my experience, it is difficult to have a hard-set written warranty on a weapon or piece of armor when so many factors impact the item's lifespan and functionality. Things happen, and while our various craftsmen are excellent, unforeseen things tend to impact the lifespan of an item crafted in the shop.
If I give my clients a one year warranty and an obvious
forging flaw shows itself three years down the road (it happens rarely, but it
happens) I wouldn’t feel right telling the client that his time is simply run
out. On the other hand, if the customer deliberately (or through sheer
stupidity) abuses a perfectly good sword and snaps it a week after it arrives at
his home, I’m not going to help him out – his stupidity, his loss. Then, of
course, there is the question of what constitutes abuse for an item that is
meant to be constructed to the standards of weapons that were meant to slice
through bodies and hack through armor and bone.
It is a vastly muddied pond to leap into.
So, do we simply post a policy and make exceptions on a case by case basis? Doesn't that render a policy ineffectual right from the start? How is a policy a policy if it ends with the caveat "... but only so long as it makes sense."
In that light, our firm policy is this:
We back every product we make. If you, the original purchaser, ever experience a problem with a custom piece you've purchased from us we want to help. To do that, we must examine the item before a determination and decision can be made.
If the issue is a fault or flaw (i.e., the item exhibits a materials, fabrication or manufacturing flaw that rendered it unable to take the stresses it otherwise should have) then we will deal with it and make it right within reasonable bounds (i.e., repair or replacement).
However, if the item failed due to the owner's neglect, abuse, or outright stupidity then that person is on his own.
Rust, mold, mildew and the ravages of time, use and environment are never warrantable issues. That is why proper maintenance is so important.
As a final note, issues are handled in the same manner we are. It mostly comes down to how we are approached and how reasonable and realistic a client is about his expectations. Work with us and we’ll work with you.
In all cases, The purchaser of record (the person whom, according to our records, made the original purchase) is the only person who may make a warranty claim.
Under no circumstances are we liable for any damage or injury - incidental or otherwise - related to any use or failure of the item in question beyond the repair or replacement of that item at our sole discretion. We will never be liable or responsible for your good or bad judgment, or for your decision to engage in activities that obviously carry an inherent danger such as training, fencing, sparring, engaging in competitions, "messin' around" in the back yard, attacking trees and rocks, playing Highlander or the alcohol/adrenaline-fueled fits of anger or stupidity. These are dangerous implements. Use caution. Use good judgment.
Please refer to #2 above.