Forrest Saw Service Deteriorating?

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I have long been an advocate of Forrest blades, recommending them to all of my woodworker friends who had not yet discovered them. I actually own 10 of them which is a fair amount for a non-professional.
Now it seems that every time I send one or two of them to Forrest for resharpening I get really terrible service. First off, they get $20.00 bucks for sharpening a 10" blade. Then they almost always find something wrong with the blade (chipped tooth that I did notice when it sent it to them or a blade they claim is not running true) and they charge additionally for that. Moreover, one usually spends $20.00 on shipping charges for each sharpening. When you are through you usually end up spending more than $30.00 per blade. That's pretty stiff but if their service was prompt I could probably live with it. This time I sent them my blades three weeks ago and am still waiting for them to arrive even though they told them they would be shipped 10 days ago.
I'm really about to reach the point where I start looking for a substitute. Which brings me to the real reason for this post. Are there any woodworkers out there who are former users of Forrest blades? If so, what did you switch to? Are there any other blades which are close to Forrest and what do they go for?
JOe
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[schnipperage]

The Forrest blades I tried and used were a definite improvement over the Freuds and Oldhams etc that I had been using. Then I had a Royce/Ayr specialist sit down with me and give me a serious education about saw blades. After all was said and done, one thing that stood out like a dog's balls, was the fact that there is no such blade as one that does it all. He immediatly put the ripping category aside as nothing will rip like a blade that is made to rip. Next he demonstrated some of his more exotic blades like negative hook 100 tooth ATB's and 5-degree TCG on several materials. Then the wide-spectrum blades that will cut almost anything but nothing particularly well. The blade he suggested for melamine just blew the Forrest away.... it was, of course, more money than the Forrest. Like every other issue in this game, you get what you pay for. They also solved my solid surface requirements nicely with a blade that runs on something as small as 1.5 HP for 75 bucks a blade...cut ply with that blade and you get smoke... go figgur.
http://www.royceayr.com/Distributors.shtml They are all over the US and Kanuckistan and I am very happy with the service and products.
0?0
Rob---who is having a bout of insomnia. Not fun.
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I fail to see where the poor sercive comes in. IIRC Forrest only does what you authorize them to do. $20 is higher than most but you knew this going in, right? S & H is not really a money maker for Forrest and would it really be any cheaper shipping to some one else? And, I think you are getting a deal if the blade costs $20 for shipping, $20 for sharpening and only being charged $30 or more. Lastly, you complain about them finding a problem with a blade tha you admid had a chipped tooth?
Now what is the problem again?
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On Mon, 14 Feb 2005 14:53:33 GMT, "Leon"

Saying that there was a chipped tooth was my typo. What I meant to say was that I had noted NO chipped teeth. Of course, there are things in these blades that professionals can see that the user might miss and I am willing to give Forrest the benefit of the doubt on things like chipped teeth.
Your quasi attack on me and your spirited defense of Forrest seems rather curious since I wasn't attacking Forrest but just seeking a solution to my problems in dealing with them. Fact is that when you send a blade off to Forrest for sharpening it most always seems to cost from $30 to $50 each. If I could find a blade that was almost as good as a Forrest for $60 or $70 I would probably switch and just forget resharpening as there is not only the shipping charges and the Forrest charges but there is the time I have to spend packaging them up and getting them to UPS. That way I could become a full-fledged member of this disposable society we have created. Just throw the dull one out and replace it with a brand new one. Keep a lot of people employed that way.
The reason for my posting was to ask my fellow woodworkers what sort of experiences they had had and what solutions they had found. The first responder, Robatoy, gave a very helpful and well thought-out response in the true spirit of this group which I thought was a place where woodworkers shared ideas and solutions to problems they encountered (for the most part that is exactly what occurs here) and not a site for one individual to try to ridicule or deprecate another..
Now, what exactly is your problem?
Joe

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"Joe Bleau" wrote in message

Well, since you admitted to a "typo", and stated that you meant to say something other than what you said, your paranoia about a "quasi attack" appears to be just that.
While I've only sent two blades to Forrest to be sharpened, one which was bent due to some dummy not taking out the zero clearance insert before cranking in some tilt, and the other just to be sharpened, I've not experienced any of the issues you were talking about, including your allusion to price gouging by performing unnecessary operations.
Could it be because I actually followed their _specific_ instructions on their sharpening service and told them, in writing, what I wanted done, and took literally, their following warning?
"Blades received without written instruction will be sharpened and have chipped teeth replaced."
Now, once again, tell us exactly what is the problem?
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Not taking out tilt with a zero clearance insert? Did you send that same dummy to work in my shop a couple, three years ago?
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"Charlie Self" wrote in message

Was he tall, dark and handsome ... or used to be? Couldn't be the same one, that dummy's still working in mine ... at least he's only pulled that stunt once, so far.
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vaguely proposed a theory ......and in reply I say!:
remove ns from my header address to reply via email
You're a one-man operation, right?

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"OldNick" wrote in message

one,
stunt
A committee actually ... it's those voices, ya know.
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Geez Charley Is this something we all do ONE time? And Only One time I hope.
I was wondering why the bevel wheel was getting so tight. LOL
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"Leon" wrote in message

I don't know about that ... stand-by and I'll let you know. :)

Yep ... my first thought, with replays of the threads on what gear lube to use, was that it was time to clean the damn sawdust out of the gear teeth.
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Swingman posts:

Yep ... my first thought, with replays of the threads on what gear lube to use, was that it was time to clean the damn sawdust out of the gear teeth.
Same thought thundered through my mind as I got irked at the delay. Sigh.
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Only if "he" is me... I did it last nite. [ Grrrrr! ] Thankfully not to a Forrest...
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The best way to guard against this is to simply mark each tooth with a permanent marker. If you have an obvious chipped tooth you will see it and who ever sharpens the tooth will also notice that each tooth has been inspected and marked.
Of course, there are

And, you did not seem to have a complaint with the quality of work.

I was not so much attacking you as much as trying to understand what your true complaint was. You stated, "Now it seems that every time I send one or two of them to Forrest for resharpening I get really terrible service. " That sounded more like a attack on Forrest.
Fact is that when you send a blade off to Forrest for sharpening it most always seems to

Have you sent any blades UPS to any one else and compared total cost? Unless you personally make the delivery the S&H is going to cost $10 to 15.
If I could find a blade that was almost as good as a Forrest for $60 or $70 I would probably switch and just

Seems to me that even if you did find a blade as good as a Forrest for $60 to $70 it would still be more expensive. $60 to $70 for a one use blade vs. a $30 to $50 sharpening is till way more expensive. And if you feel your time is more valuable than that to send a blade out for resharpening then your interpretation of Forrest Service is not what is at issue here.
Snip

IIRC Robatoy makes his living selling and installing counter tops. His experience with a blade manufacturer that may target his industry may not be the same as one that targets and services the woodworking industry. I will agree that Robatoy makes generous contributions to this group.
for the most part that is exactly what occurs here) and

I agree but again when you post starts off with
"Now it seems that every time I send one or two of them to Forrest for resharpening I get really terrible service. "
You may be complaining to me about your own way of posting.
You never told us what kind of terrible service you received and only complained about Forrest charging more than you want to pay and selling you repairs that they felt that your blades needed.
Now if you are simply looking for a cheaper service and do not really have a problem with the Forrest sharpenings that you get may I tell you that up until the summer of 2003 I always used a local sharpening service in Houston. I have used this service since the late 80's. Their equipment is computer operated and state of the art. The machines will recognize your blade if it has been in their shop and it knows what kind of grind to put on that particular blade. Plus IIRC they offer grinding up to 600 grit. I took my Forrest for the first time to them and let them have a go at resharpening it. I will admit in the past that I have been very pleased with their work and the Forrest blade did come back much sharper as it required much less effort to cut wood but the quality of cut was worse than before they sharpened the blade. I was going to live with it for a while as I had $24 invested in the resharpening. As luck would have it I tried to tilt the blade on my saw with the blade raised through a zero clearance insert. Then the blade really had a bad quality cut. I immediately ordered a new Forrest AND sent this one to Forrest for another sharpening and a "Tune up". I did pay Forrest $42 for straightening, sharpening, test cutting and return shipping in addition to me shipping the blade to them. When I got the blade back 3 week later it cut as good as the new blade. Forrest brought the blade back to like new cutting condition.
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{snipperectomy]

*coughs*......
*wipes tear*
First of all, I want to thank the Academy
*swallows*
...........for the kind words.
<G>
Leon recalls it, mostly correct, that I sell, fabricate and install counter tops. I do all my own solid surface fabrication and have since 1988. I farm out the eStone (Silestone etc) and granite to some excellent suppliers. However, I got into the full swing of woodworking 30 years ago. Loudspeaker boxes. Nice ones, veneered etc. A LOT of speaker boxes. Accuracy becomes important when you make the same operation 100 times. You screw up one tweeter hole, you screw up 100. I have built a lot of jigs. You get fish-eyes in your finish on one box due to silicone contamination, *I*'d be sanding till the wee hours... after a few years the shine went off mass production and I started doing more custom work. Wall units, that kinda thing. It feels weird making a potato bin out of pine on a 12" SCM/Altendorf sliding table saw. That 5 HP 600 volt 3-phase motor justa bored stiff. Then residential and commercial cabinetry, kitchens, displays etc. Edgebanders, that kinda stuff. Then in 1988 I added Corian to the line-up. Just another addition to a vast array of 'multi-mediums'. Many of you here know what I mean. Aluminum, steel, glass, neon, plastics, HPL, laminated metals and so on. (*Tips hat to Mr. Watson on that great video posted here some time back.) Every day a new challenge.
Statistics, (which are wrong 50% of the time) say that only 5% of the working population truly love their job. I can safely say that I am and have been a lucky man. There were some times when I wished I had done something else, like when locked-up at 5PM on a Friday to do renovation work at a bank...locked up till Sunday morning... yup..5 of us..I though I had a good idea...get the job done. Running out of a certain fastener at 4 AM really sucks. (Worked out fine, btw) Or starting a gig at 3:00 AM at a Casino that HAD to be done before 8:AM When I semi-retired (f*ucked up knees (arthritis)) in Sept 2003, I sold and left all of the cabinet stuff behind, but kept the solid surface clients.
***music****
The cortisone shots have really worked nicely. I am so amazed and grateful.
(***music is getting louder****)
Sooooo...maybe a small cabinet for the hallway? I promised my wife a head board... I like the mission style. (oops.. a double entendre??) So even though I am a casual woodworker now, I have made a lot of mistakes in my life that I am more than happy to share. You know, silly shit, like not taking out a zero clearance insert....<G>
00
Rob
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Today I called Forrest to find out what happened to the blades I sent them on January 20 and which I was told would be shipped no later than Monday, Jan. 30. I complained about the service and was put through to a guy named "Jim." Jim turned out to be Jim Forrest, the owner. Couldn't ask for a nicer guy. He said he would check into it and get back to me. He did call back to say my blades were shipped today and that he was waiving all but the sharpening charges because he felt that I had received "poor" service and he wanted to make up for it.
Now, as I said in my very first post, I have long been a booster of Forrest blades--for at least the past 10 years. I am a booster because I have simply never found another blade that cuts as well. However, I was growing disenchanted with the service I was receiving and I had every right to be.
But what can you about them--they still make the best blade I've ever used and they still sharpen them better than any other service I've tried. And with the owner fielding complaints and taking corrective action what more could one ask for. Wish there more companies like that in our good ole US of A.
Interestingly enough no one suggested another blade they felt could really compete with Forrest other than the highly specialized blades Robatoy kindly suggested. Still, spending $40-$50 bucks to get a blade sharpened is a lot of money when one sees what the Freuds and Oldhams are going for at the discounters.
Joe
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Good for you and Forrest Joe, I am glad that your current problem has been resolved with Forrest.
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And it's nice to see that Jim Forrest takes a personal interest in the reputation of his company. A key indicator of success in a highly competitive business.
Patriarch
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That's how they became and will continue to be sucessful. Dave

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That's how they became and will continue to be sucessful. Dave

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