what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

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hujev
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what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby hujev » 28 Mar 2018, 11:25pm

Hope this is OK to ask here... I'm having trouble communicating with the framebuilder steve goff.

He's had a considerable deposit on a frame build for about 18 months (we'd been communicating on it for about a year before that), but the only communication I have gotten since is vague excuses after repeated attempts every 4-7 months why he hasn't started (deaths, medical, health, needed a new [later modified to say it was used!] car, etc.).

Back in late 2016 he said he'd be ordering the supplies for my build next so it's been a long while... I feel like I'm going to lose my money on this, and (did I mention?) I'm in americaland, so can't just march over and rough him up!

Does anybody know if he's produced anything the last year or so? Is he in some sort of real dire strait that anybody knows of?

I'm happy to say that I've had better experiences with Woodrup & Stanforth/Lee Cooper, but admit now I feel foolish...

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby tooley92 » 29 Mar 2018, 7:53pm

He's still alive & building!

I know he's got quite a bit on at the moment and is working through a waiting list - Steve is a great builder - keep onto him and you won't be disappointed when it's finished.

I'm prob going to order another one from him later on in the year.
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Cugel
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Cugel » 30 Mar 2018, 9:23am

hujev wrote:Hope this is OK to ask here... I'm having trouble communicating with the framebuilder steve goff.

...........


I find these sort of situations fascinating, from a socio-cultural point of view.

"The British" (a large and amorphous class of folk, granted) have a reputation for generating a significant number of goods & services providers of the inept sort. They can be inept in a variety of ways.

At the extreme end is the criminal-cowboy type, who pretends to be a tradesman but in fact has no skill at it; who in reality uses the label as a front to con we naïve customers out of our hard-earned.

At the other end of the spectrum is the fellow who may be extremely good at the core service (say, bike frame making) but who is not so good at the wider aspects of business, including the implementation of the order-supply chain.

My ladywife can provide you with a long, long list of tradesfolk who have a good reputation for their work but a terrible inability to actually get 'round to doing it for you; and a very short list of trades people who are good at both. I have learnt many a skill via a drive to get something done after waiting a 6-month for the electrician, plumber, roofer, etc.. (Not yet had to learn frame building, though).

This is "a British tradition" - a cultural habit that's arisen because our history and laws have not been good at regulation - imposing high standards for the performance of various claimed professional skills. Other nations have different traditions and standards. It's harder for trades people to get away with poor customer service in, for example, Germany.

I know nothing of Mr Goff. But reading the available public information on him, I suspect he is another who is very good at his core skill but overwhelmed by the need for various wider business skills. If so, he is not alone, in Blighty!

As with all such trades people, he needs to keep his reputation in order to get business. In this day & age, it can be hard to get away with poor service as the irate customer can relate her experiences employing the interwebbed amplifying horn, as you have here.

On the other hand, if the builder is a very good builder (as seems likely in this case) and just needs a chivvy to get on with it, you must yourself learn the skill of interweb chivvying, which needs to be restrained to an irate-hooting volume just enough to induce the correct degree of shame but also an increase in desire-to-please. Hoot too loudly, or with a very strident tone, and you will merely annoy your supplier, so that he gets in a huff and puts your order back to the bottom of the list. :-)

I have a feeling that you will eventually be pleased and relieved in this case, once you're up & riding on your Goff.

Cugel

PS "Delayed gratification" is a necessary process (and mental pleasure) if one is to deal successfully with Blighters. I know that delayed gratification is not a thing widely appreciated or practiced in the USA. :->

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby brynpoeth » 30 Mar 2018, 9:31am

+1 for Cugel, obvious things maybe but he formulated them

In Germany anyone setting up business needs a 'Meisterbrief' in many trades, has to learn about bookkeeping, sales etc etc
This is no longer compulsory for certain trades (google 'Meisterzwang' to read more)

Apparently the Germans learn too much and the Americans too little, geographically at least the UK is in the 'middle'
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hujev
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby hujev » 30 Mar 2018, 8:31pm

Could be as above, but what worries me is long gaps of communication and vague excuses indicating continuous or repeated extreme woe. It sort of felt like he's gotten in some sort of duress that made framebuilding either personally or financially impossible. It felt like the delay would be perpetual and eventually would be forgotten.

I'm going to try to reach by phone soon to see if I can straighten things out. Hoping, as £1000 is a fair bit to lose. I'm never in much of a hurry, but still 2&1/2 years after starting discussion and 1&1/2 years after payment seems a wee long by any national standard of gratification to still have no progress... Maybe I went too far in my attempt to deal with a small shop.

If it ever does get done though (properly) I'd be fairly good advertising as I tend to make huge detailed web pages about my cool bikes (and trike) and all their greatness!

Will update with any progress.

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby brynpoeth » 30 Mar 2018, 8:42pm

Do you have a contract or agreement, was the delivery date specified?

About people and business, I read an interview with the MD of a****n Deutschland, he explained that his main task was to assemble teams, a good team is much more than the sum of its parts
A cycle business team might include a couple of frame builders, mechanic, accountant, salesperson, ideas person, communicator
I bet we have a good selection of skills on these fora
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby brynpoeth » 30 Mar 2018, 8:44pm

Maybe someone in the UK could contact and visit Mr G on your behalf to check progress
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Mightme
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Mightme » 31 Mar 2018, 12:08pm

Life is way too short to wait this long for anything.

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Cugel
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Cugel » 31 Mar 2018, 2:10pm

Mightme wrote:Life is way too short to wait this long for anything.


This a recipe for getting in debt, as well as other scrapes. Moreover, at near 70, life seems to have been very long indeed now, considering all the stuff that's happened during it. And, despite time accelerating as one gets older, I will never give up the pleasures of delayed gratification, including the pleasure of not being in debt and paying great wodges of "interest" to usurers just so I can "have it now".

But enjoy your impulses if you can. Mind out for the disappointments associated with the unforeseen consequences of your rush to satisfaction! :-)

Of course, the OP is not in debt (quite the opposite) to Mr Goff and has good reason to chivvy a bit. The question is, how to do it effectively?

Cugel, taking 5 years (so far) to decide how, where and when to move house.

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Bonefishblues » 31 Mar 2018, 2:14pm

One suspects that the OP's place in the build queue has been "bumped" a number of times. As suggested, a phone call from N America may well re-ignite Mr G's passion for building?

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby JohnW » 31 Mar 2018, 5:34pm

Cugel wrote:.........................."Delayed gratification" is a necessary process (and mental pleasure) if one is to deal successfully with Blighters. I know that delayed gratification is not a thing widely appreciated or practiced in the USA. :->


You voted Trump in though - didn't you..............?

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Samuel D » 31 Mar 2018, 5:37pm

Steve Goff has an online reputation for this sort of thing. I believe he means well but is overwhelmed by the demands of his job, especially getting his act together in the presence of the everyday difficulties facing every human alive. He might need a boss breathing down his neck to get the best out of him, but he’s his own boss.

Of course holding your money for a year and a half (and counting) is far from professional or acceptable in the UK or anywhere else – unless that kind of wait was agreed beforehand.

I suspect a phone call in as friendly a tone as you can muster would go a long way, provided he’s the sort to answer his phone in these circumstances.

Good luck.

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby brynpoeth » 31 Mar 2018, 5:46pm

Maybe such businesses could use a factoring arrangement where the deposit is held by a third party

One should generally be very careful about paying a deposit, there really should/must be a timetable

What proportion of the price of a frame might be the raw materials?
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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby Bonefishblues » 31 Mar 2018, 5:59pm

Quite high, given that he's at the lower end of the price range (yet is widely praised for the quality of his work) for comparable builds.

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Re: what's going on with framebuilder steve goff?

Postby neilob » 31 Mar 2018, 6:08pm

I do not have any kind of relationship with Steve Goff, although I am well aware of his reputation as a top frame builder. TBH, however, I am uncomfortable with this trial by internet because none of us have an insight into the specifics of the unfortunate events that have left the OP without his frame. In my experience, these situations are best addressed by direct communications between the parties or, as a final resort, legal intervention. Trashing reputations is not a good approach.
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