Tormach customer service


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    Exclamation Tormach customer service

    Hey guys,


    Just wanted to gather some opinions related to Tormach and customer service.

    i purchased a PCNC deluxe package in December 2016, my experience with the service side has been extremely poor.


    i could go into great detail , it will take a long time to write it all up , but I am left wondering why the general feeling is good about Tormach.


    i do like the machine for the most part , my biggest issue is with service , followup & taking ownership of problems.


    tons of phone calls , broken promises , no call backs , terrible communication, voicemail , bouncing calls from person to person , wasting lots of my time for very small issues...... Not what I would expect on a $10.5k purchase.

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    Registered nitewatchman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    Not been my personal experience.

    gary



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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    Nor mine. I've had some slower than normal shipments but as far as tech support they've been quite responsive.

    Awall

    The Body Armor Dude - Andrew


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    Default Tormach customer service

    Sorry to hear that. My decision to go with Tormach was BECAUSE of their reported good customer service and support.

    So far I have not been disappointed. After getting passed the quirks with the machine (mostly coolant shielding/leaking with enclosure and collet closer fitment), I'm relatively happy with my Slant pro lathe. I've been an owner since May 2016.

    Maybe any issues I've had were minor compared to yours (initial wiring questions, replaced bad tailstock). However they've resolved all of them on a timely matter and assistance over the phone have been consistent.

    I don't know if it helped but I tried to keep my correspondence with the same person so I don't have to keep explaining my story on every new phone call or email.

    One huge value I've noticed is the support from the many fellow owners that are active on this forum. I've handled most of the little issues just from talking to the many insightful people here (after searching the forum). I would say that is an added benefit to owning the same brand.

    I hope everything works out.

    Paul






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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I have never had anything but stellar customer service from Tormach (including recently). Call-backs, extra effort beyond what I expected, and always timely. That's an 8 year history.

    That's not to say every experience is perfect: read the record here. There have been bumps. But over time, for the vast majority of us, it's been excellent.



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    Gold Member Steve Seebold's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I have nothing but good things to say about the service I have gotten from Tormach.

    My machine will be 6 years old in July and with one exception, all I have ever done is run it.

    I don't run it as much now as I did then, but I still get 10 to 20 hours per week on it.

    You can buy GOOD PARTS or you can buy CHEAP PARTS, but you can't buy GOOD CHEAP PARTS.


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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I generally get good customer service from Tormach service though they did drop a year ago or so when I was having issues with my lathe turret. They never did get back to me despite several calls and emails but I eventually solved the problem on my own. I almost always get next day delivery on spare parts and am about to order another in a bit. I'll follow up here with the results either way.



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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    Bought my PCNC 1100 in November 2013. Customer service was always terrific. However, my last order of accessories got completely screwed up. Multiple mistakes happened and e-mails weren't answered. I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt for now as I think they might just have a lot on their plate temporarily.


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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I also have gotten good customer service.. I usually deal with e-mailing and I get a response next day. They have also gone above and beyond with the few problems that I have had. Do you think it is something you are doing or having unreasonable expectations?



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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I've been impressed with tormach customer served over the last year (my first year of having the 770). They have to be patient on the phone, methodical with trouble shooting, very helpful. I've had several small challenges; my x motor needed to be replaced; I needed help setting up the auto oiler and machine (just little questions), software questions with wifi, fielding suggestions and workflow questions about path pilot , etc. I'm sure I've talked to 5 different people. They are a bit slow in responding - or getting them on the phone -but over time I've become ok with that because I never feel rushed when I talk to them.


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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I hate to change the general tune here, but my experience with Tormach CS has been mixed. It went from supportive and cordial (responding to every single point I brought up via email), to techs ignoring my e-mails, being short with me, etc. I'm not sure exactly why it changed, but I've been nothing but polite on my end. My guess is, I've been asking for more than they can give me, with regards to getting my mill to perform at the factory tolerances. But, it could also be that they simply don't know what I'm talking about when I supply them data... as a decent "novice" machinist with an engineering degree, I'm not going to get much respect on that front. Basically, all I've been asking for is that the machine, and accessories I get from them, perform to general specs.

    Anyhow, my Tormach setup journey with a 2015 770 is a pretty odd case, as our machine wasn't even fully set up and scrutinized until after the warranty period expired. Long story, but it basically sat in a crate for a few months, and partially installed on its stand for another few. We're in an academic R&D setting... my boss didn't let me devote the time required for setting up a machine shop from scratch.. big mistake!

    It was either a terrible month at the Tormach factory, or the machine was given a beating during shipping, but when I was finally able to fire it up, and throw some proper metrology tools at it, a few points were WAY out of spec. It's almost like the machine had a very hard crash before I even got it. So, I was left with begging for support to correct as much as possible. Even when carefully following their guidance to correct the issues however, most adjustments I've made have either made the specs worse, or didn't improve things.

    In the end, the machine's casting is permanently deformed, so it will never run as true as it was designed to do (at least over the y-axis travel range). The z axis was wonky from the get-go... I've had to shim the spindle head on a "brand new" machine. They've scared the fear of God into me about trying to rotate the spindle head, so that X-Z tram goes back into spec. Plus, the lubrication system keeps stopping-up at 3 points, and will require sliding the table over (I'm sure you all know the drill there, not fun looking though), to purge debris and install new orifices. I even taught them about how the lubrication system was designed... they didn't know about the cross-drilled access holes for the x-ways, for example. Makes me think the machine is full of debris (the entire thing was covered in gravel when I opened the crate... inside all of the way covers and everything). Plus, the full enclosure ordered for the machine had lots of design errors, which required some creativity to get it to fit.

    In other words, I would expect them to send me a new machine if it were still under warranty. Instead, I've spent nearly a year trying to correct all of the mistakes that came with the machine and full enclosure.

    On the flipside, they were quite friendly at one point, and the service manager even offered to send me a new stand, out of warranty, once I found that ours was only halfway painted and leaked coolant.

    I think it really all boils down to their CS philosophy, and not trying to promise customers anything from their machines. Scrutinize their communications carefully. If Tormach doesn't specify something about their machines, they won't even comment on it. Across the board, that's probably just good general CS strategy, but it does get annoying, when you need to know how much torque it's going to take to damage your gibs while adjusting them, for example, and they keep dancing around the issue.
    They'll never explicitly say it, but these machines are what they are... you get what you pay for. Tormach's factory QC is spotty, at best. Their output is far from a Six-Sigma level, but, being a small company, that produces hobby-level machines on the cheap, what do you expect? In the end, I think Tormach CS is forced to do damage control all day... no better way to put it. That has to get taxing after a while!

    It's been said that CS complaints follow a Pareto distribution... 20% of your customers give you 80% of your complaints. Now that's sometimes, but not always, the fault of the customer's pickiness. A good bit of that comes from the actual quality of the products themselves. I've become one of that 20%, but not by choice. I'm sure all the techs over there go "Oh no, not him again", when they get my e-mails, because I've just had so many problems pop-up that aren't covered in the manuals.

    Count your blessings if you received a machine with everything in spec. It's always difficult to tell how many machines actually arrive that way. I sure can't, with my biased perspective, and from tooling around on a forum like this (where everyone comes in with their problems), but I'm guessing it's still the majority of Tormach owners that get decent machines out of the gate.

    Thanks for letting me rant

    -Mike



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    Default Re: Tormach customer service

    I would not like to work as a tech support for any companies like Tormach.

    I"m sure many buy a mill or a lathe and think it will come with a machining and CNC course and call or email tech for any minor problem they have.

    When you buy a CNC machine, you're suppose to be able to make it work.

    Jeff



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