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  1. #1
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    Bit of Nicolai Warranty action on STW.....


  2. #2
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    Nicolai's costumer service simple does not exist. I'm having many issues also with a bent Helius AC frame...
    They just do not care, at all, with their costumers!!!!

  3. #3
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    dosent fill you with confidence does it.

  4. #4
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    Does not make for great reading that for sure.... Communication out of Nicolai Germany can be slow. I am thinking it is not enough people working in the establishment perhaps.... I have been waiting for quite some time for a AC29er frame, the wait is always worth it though... I have gotten used to waiting...

    I find it odd that the comment in the link made that Nicolai UK sold the frame direct to the customer, then said take the warranty issue to 18 Bikes. Simon is this normal? can you shed any light...

    Not very often that you hear of an issue with a Nicolai frame either, I have beat the crap out of many of my frames too....
    The_Lecht_Rocks: whafe - cheeers - may i offer an official apology for the wagon wheeler "dis-belief"

  5. #5
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    Can you give more details? How is your frame bent? I hear of cracked or broken frames but don't hear much of "bent" ones.
    Remember, you are unique, just like everyone else.

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    Soon I'll post photos and explanation of what happened... but basically the front triangle (down and top tube) simply bent in a - I would say - normal bump into a tree.
    Either my frame had some "built problem" (which of course Nicolai does not recognize) or this frame is simply to fragile, far from what I expected from a Nicolai frame.

  7. #7
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    As far as i am concerned,if the Frame came from Nicolai Uk,it should be them who deals with the return,not the customer.If it was from a shop,the shop should deal with it with Nicolai UK.
    Its things like this that would put people of buying Nicolai.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hmpoliveira View Post
    Soon I'll post photos and explanation of what happened... but basically the front triangle (down and top tube) simply bent in a - I would say - normal bump into a tree.
    Either my frame had some "built problem" (which of course Nicolai does not recognize) or this frame is simply to fragile, far from what I expected from a Nicolai frame.
    Hahaha! "a normal bump into a tree" sorry I shouldn't laugh but I like that. Its like the more honest version of 'I was just riding along'
    www.gravity-sports.co.uk

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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dipper View Post
    Hahaha! "a normal bump into a tree" sorry I shouldn't laugh but I like that. Its like the more honest version of 'I was just riding along'
    No worries, I laugh with you... but this frame is ****!!

  10. #10
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    On a warranty return I agree. By the sound of it, it had already been decided it wasn't a warranty issue though. He had a bent stay that appeared sometime within the year he'd had it. How it happened is anyone's guess but box section stays don't bend of their own accord so I can understand it being refused as a warranty claim. Shame for the lad that the incident has put him off Nicolai but I think he should have accepted that nicolai can't be held responsible for damage like that and accepted the discounted repair.

    If I went out in my year old car and found it was suddenly pulling to the side and the cause turned out to be a bent wishbone, I'd assume the wife had bounced it off a kerb! I wouldnt expect it to be collected at the dealers expense and repaired under warranty. These things happen.
    www.gravity-sports.co.uk

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  11. #11
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    It will bend if not tacked properly before welding.
    Maybe it was like it from new,and slipped through Nicolais QC
    Have just read it all again.
    In my opinion now after reading all of it,He had a fair deal.He might not remember damaging it,and he might not of,But £130 to fix it isnt that bad.
    He probably had it cheap of Nicolai Uk anyway.

    I have scratches on mine that i dont know how they happened.

    At the end of the day i brought it to ride,not hang in my living room to be looked at.
    Last edited by norcosam; 11-13-2011 at 09:52 AM.

  12. #12
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    It is vital what constitutes a "normal bump into a tree"

    130 Quid to fix a frame is reasonable to me.... Time frame it is taking I can identify with you in the length of time it has taken.

    I can assure you, Nicolai may well be slow with communication at times, but it is not the company ethos to screw someone over re a frame. They do have a 5 year race warranty!
    The_Lecht_Rocks: whafe - cheeers - may i offer an official apology for the wagon wheeler "dis-belief"

  13. #13
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    I find it odd that the comment in the link made that Nicolai UK sold the frame direct to the customer, then said take the warranty issue to 18 Bikes. Simon is this normal? can you shed any light...

    Sold direct at it was one of the clearance CC's we had. However, he lives c15miles from one of our dealers (an easily rideable distance) and 170 miles from us - it made a lot of sense for Eighteen to do an initial assessment of it rather than him packing it and shipping it. Initial thought was that it could have been as simple as a bearing adjustment (was reporting brake rub)

    It is possible that the frame was damaged either in shipping from Germany or from us to the owner but the fact that a problem didn't emerge for around a year would suggest this wasn't the case.
    Simon Still
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    www.nicolai-uk.com

  14. #14
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    There's no such thing as a 'normal bump into a tree' even at slow speed, hitting something head on with the front wheel, the bending moment at the ht could be quite large. gusseted frames will obviously fair better in this situation but it's impossible to build a frame light while trying to cover every crash scenario. There's got to be a trade off. Unfortunately, this is another of those situations where it's impossible to judge.

    He's been honest about what happened(as opposed to saying it happened when bumping up a kerb!) These things happen and I'd expect a company like nicolai to be sympathetic and to make sure it gets fixed and returned in a reasonable time and at reasonable cost.

    To be covered against accident damage it may be worthwhile taking out insurance. A lot of home policy's will cover your bike for a fee. Years ago I snapped a frame(an early proflex so im talking mid 90's here!) and my insurance covered me for a brand new frame. It didn't even cross my mind to take it back to the shop
    www.gravity-sports.co.uk

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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by nicolai-uk View Post
    I find it odd that the comment in the link made that Nicolai UK sold the frame direct to the customer, then said take the warranty issue to 18 Bikes. Simon is this normal? can you shed any light...

    Sold direct at it was one of the clearance CC's we had. However, he lives c15miles from one of our dealers (an easily rideable distance) and 170 miles from us - it made a lot of sense for Eighteen to do an initial assessment of it rather than him packing it and shipping it. Initial thought was that it could have been as simple as a bearing adjustment (was reporting brake rub)

    It is possible that the frame was damaged either in shipping from Germany or from us to the owner but the fact that a problem didn't emerge for around a year would suggest this wasn't the case.
    I see no issue with that either Simon. That's what the dealer network is for. It was the wording that made it sound like you were panning him off to a dealer. As always there's 2 sides to every story!
    www.gravity-sports.co.uk

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    It is possible that the frame was damaged either in shipping from Germany or from us to the owner but the fact that a problem didn't emerge for around a year would suggest this wasn't the case.

    I am a member of this forum also as I was a Nicolai fan, posting pics of my bike etc. I suggested the above to Simon during our e-mails and this was immediately disregarded despite me explaining that I had ridden the bike rarely due to family/work/life commitments. My issue has never been the cost of repairing the bike. If I had "bumped into a tree" and bent something then I would have paid the £350. The only way the strut could have been bent was while it was laid horizontal with the dropouts braced (according to Simon and clearly obvious), as it is shipped to customers. I asked questions about how he thought I could have subjected the bike to those loads myself seen as the bike was hung by the front wheel when in storage, and has never been loaned to anyone else and not been involved in a stack that affected the right strut, which had no impact marks on it either. I didn't get this answered and at that point was directed by Simon to communicate directly with Germany.

    At the time I thought it was odd and hoped that somebody at Nicolai Germany had a good grasp of English ( I know that it is often easier to speak a different language than it is to read and write it). It appears not as my questions still went unanswered and I never received any reference to the contents of my e-mails to them. After waiting a month for a reply from Nic Germany I chased them up and they offered the £130 repair. I think that if a compromise at the beginning of this had been offered ( a 50/50 split due to neither party being able to prove/disprove each other) then I feel that matters would be different.

    I'm not hating the brand, the bikes are still awesome, but somebody really needs to work on their customer skills, the competition is out there and selling equally awesome stuff.

  17. #17
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    Soulwood
    I sympathize with your issue but you're asking questions that can't be answered. By nicolai or anyone else. You're adamant that nothing has happened to the frame in your care and you want nicolai to tell you how it could have happened? How are they supposed to answer this? All they can work with is the facts(and I guess being German engineers thats exactly what they'll do). All the protestations, however honest are meaningless

    The problem appeared at some point during your ownership. How it happened is not really relevant. The bent stay is consistent with damage not a manufacturing fault. End of story. How nicolai have handled it, none of us really know as we're not privy to all the information. Maybe they could have been more helpful, maybe you could have been mor reasonable. Who knows!

    One things for sure, no one gains from all this. Other than maybe a learning experience for both parties
    www.gravity-sports.co.uk

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dipper View Post
    Soulwood
    I sympathize with your issue but you're asking questions that can't be answered. By nicolai or anyone else. You're adamant that nothing has happened to the frame in your care and you want nicolai to tell you how it could have happened? How are they supposed to answer this? All they can work with is the facts(and I guess being German engineers thats exactly what they'll do). All the protestations, however honest are meaningless

    The problem appeared at some point during your ownership. How it happened is not really relevant. The bent stay is consistent with damage not a manufacturing fault. End of story. How nicolai have handled it, none of us really know as we're not privy to all the information. Maybe they could have been more helpful, maybe you could have been mor reasonable. Who knows!

    One things for sure, no one gains from all this. Other than maybe a learning experience for both parties
    I agree with Dipper.Just treat it as an experience and move on with your life and riding.
    Its sorted now,if you think you have been wronged,sell the bike and buy another brand.if the same thing happens with them i think you will find a replacement rear would be more expensive than that,if its one of the major manufacturers.Nicolai can repair in house.most others have there frames made in China etc and will just sell you a new rear end.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whafe View Post
    ...I can assure you, Nicolai may well be slow with communication at times, but it is not the company ethos ...
    I´ve zero experiences about warranty issues, but during past two years I´ve realized that Nicolai is generally very good in engineering, but not in communication and not in aftersales at all. My LBS (local Nicolai-dealer here) has made two separate urgent-labeled spare part orders from N to me, in both cases there has been need for pivot bushings, pivot axles etc.

    Even when LBS sent order, additional email and phone-call, it has taken ~2 weeks to get those parts from DE to FI. I´ve done similar requests for other manufacturers and distributors even to US and practically any of those others can supply spareparts with next-day delivery.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by pergamonx View Post
    I´ve zero experiences about warranty issues, but during past two years I´ve realized that Nicolai is generally very good in engineering, but not in communication and not in aftersales at all. My LBS (local Nicolai-dealer here) has made two separate urgent-labeled spare part orders from N to me, in both cases there has been need for pivot bushings, pivot axles etc.

    Even when LBS sent order, additional email and phone-call, it has taken ~2 weeks to get those parts from DE to FI. I´ve done similar requests for other manufacturers and distributors even to US and practically any of those others can supply spareparts with next-day delivery.
    Sorry if I came across in saying Nicolai is perfect, because they are not. I have at times struggled to get replies, I have en picked up the phone, which I assure you is a pain from New Zealand. That has helped...

    I guess it is a huge shift from a boutique precise engineering company to one trying to mass sell more frames so to speak... But yes some of these basic business things for sure need some improvements...
    The_Lecht_Rocks: whafe - cheeers - may i offer an official apology for the wagon wheeler "dis-belief"

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    The issue here is the time that has elapsed between receipt of the frame and the issue becoming apparent. At least I hope that's the case. The question I would want to ask is how long can reasonably lapse between receiving the frame and declaring that there is a problem and still have that problem be accepted as damage in transit?

    Let's face it, you're not going to know that there is something wrong with your frame inside of a few months. You'll never diagnose a problem at the shop and unless something is seriously wrong, the excitment of having a new bike coupled with confirmation bias (new bike must therefore be the best bike you've ever ridden) will prevent you from accepting any problem for at least few months.

    So at what point can the distributor (any distributor, not just Momentum) fairly refuse to take it back and accept that there was a problem caused in transit?

    I don't know the answer but it's definitely the question that has caused the problems with this case. Momentum accept it could have happened in transit, but Soulwood, for lack of riding it when he first got it, hasn't spotted that for over a year. It could be a desperately unfortunate situation and I think the outcome he got was fair but the way he got it was shambolic. Considering the situation, £130 to sort the issue out is a good resolution, but then Soulwood has always said it's not about the money, it's about how the situation was handled.

    I teach stuff like this for a living and it's really obvious to me that this is 100% a case of not what you do, but how you do it! I think simply by Nicolai/Momentum asking questions, empathising with Soulwood by acknolwedging his grievance (not the same as accepting his grievance mind) , asking him questions as to what he think might have happened and then putting their case forward and asking how it might be resolved, would have yielded at much happier customer.

    Instead you've got someone who created a FOUR PAGE THREAD on one of the most influential MTB websites in the UK. That really gireves me to! It shouldn't be like that.

  22. #22
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    GeeTee-

    Ignoring communication issues and approach completely for the moment - those are separate issues. Happy to have the benefit of your customer service advice offline but if a customer is made an offer it's up to them to respond (see the second person who has posted on that thread who's been sitting on mails for 5 weeks and hasn't responded to either my note on the thread or the two mails I've sent since).

    There are only 4 places that damage *could* have occurred - of course it *could* have happened at any of those stages but there was no evidence that it had before it left us to be shipped to the customer.

    So at what point can the distributor fairly refuse to take it back and accept that there was a problem caused in transit?

    The key word here is 'transit'. Damage in transit is the shipper's fault - it's why we pay to have our packages insured. Should a supplier take responsibility for damage that occurred in transit that the end customer didn't report until after the shippers notification period has expired?

    A customer has to take responsibility at a some point. I'm struggling to think of a suitable analogy, and I'm sure someone will immediately tell me this situation is completely different, but try returning a TV with a scratched screen after you've owned it for a year saying "I didn't notice it at the time but it must have happened before it got to me because I'm sure I've not scratched it".
    Simon Still
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whafe View Post
    It is vital what constitutes a "normal bump into a tree"
    By "normal bump into a tree" I mean: riding a technical trail with max speed of 10-15 km/h with a rider of 60Kg and just bumping ino a tree that was already there

    I entirely assume my fault in the accident but I just expected more from a Nicolai frame. Although AC does not have HT gussets it should be a much more solid frame...

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by hmpoliveira View Post
    By "normal bump into a tree" I mean: riding a technical trail with max speed of 10-15 km/h with a rider of 60Kg and just bumping ino a tree that was already there

    I entirely assume my fault in the accident but I just expected more from a Nicolai frame. Although AC does not have HT gussets it should be a much more solid frame...
    Separate question, and just that, a question. Does Nicolai CEN test it's frames?

    I always treat my Nicolai's as though they're bullet proof and also bought them on that basis, within reason of course, I've certainly put mine through some 'use' so far with no complaints.
    Aka chainline...

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    Geetee1972, Excellent summary, couldn't have put it better myself. Geetee, I'm guessing by your username you may be 39yrs old? a year older than me, and maybe like me have you been mtb'ing since a teenager?

    Well I have and I have owned numerous bikes, crashed them, bent them and had them hand built and repaired. I have worked in the bike industry from Edinburgh to London and in all those years I can honestly say that the fault that developed on my CC was a complete mystery to me as to how I could have caused it. This was the first time in 22 years that I have ever had cause to say to a bike distributor "I'm not happy with that, I disagree" Like somebody has already said on STW, when it comes down to the wire, where neither party can prove or disprove their case the true colours of the distributor/manufacturer come to the fore.

    I truly hope that Nicolai UK & Germany do something about their warranty/customer service, because if they want to sell more frames then they are going to get more customer service issues. These are not cheap frames, they are supposed to be the best. So lets have a customer service that is the best.

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