Hooben

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Postby sassgrunt » Mon Dec 03, 2018 10:24 pm

I am VERY hesitant to complain about this company, as I have always liked their products. After Marco bought a VK4501(p) kit late last year, I immediately ordered one for myself. I knew from his postings that it would take awhile, so I waited three months before even asking about it. They sent it to me within a week after that.

In August, I decided to order another one, (this one to be made up in Girls & Panzer configuration, just to make Alpha jealous). I was quoted a price plus shipping by Kate, who is the only person I have dealt with.
August 14th - I paid the money in full.
August 30 - I never heard back from her, and wrote to ask about the shipping date, because I was going to be out of town for two weeks, (and didn't want it to get sent back if I wasn't home to collect it). Kate responded to let them know when I returned.
September 20 - I wrote that I was back, and Kate responded to acknowledge it.
October 16 - After three weeks, I didn't hear anything else, so I wrote to ask about the status. Kate replied, "It will take 20 to 30 days due to lack of raw material."
November 14 - I waited 30 days without hearing back from her, and wrote again to ask about the status.
November 24 - I waited 10 days without hearing anything from her, and wrote again to ask about the status.
December 3 - I waited 10 more days without hearing anything from her, and wrote again to ask about the status.

Not sure what to do at this point. I am a very patient guy, but it's been seven weeks since I heard anything from them....even an excuse. Like I said at the beginning, I like their products, but their customer service (after they have your money) is really lacking. Even if I wanted to file a dispute with Paypal, (which I don't - I'd rather still get the [product), it's well past the deadline for that.

If something positive happens (like I finally hear from them), I will post it. I'm not saying you shouldn't do business with them, but there has GOT to be a better way for others than what I'm experiencing! -Mike

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Postby PainlessWolf » Mon Dec 03, 2018 11:27 pm

Mike!
Hello! That is terrible news about Hooben. This issue is sometimes endemic to the guys out of China ( like Mato ) They do eventually honor their sales but seem to leave people hanging on a string at times. Raw materials? I didn't think that they were a garage outfit caught short of bulk plastic...
regards,
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Postby 43rdRecceReg » Mon Dec 03, 2018 11:41 pm

:O One month would be being patient, Mike. Two would be stoic, but still hoping for an immediate resolution.
Approaching four month's wait is going well beyond stoicism, and - I would suggest- into ANGER. @)
How can there be a shortage of plastics, when a good deal of the Pacific is awash with them :eh: ?? :crazy:
Hope you get some relief from this hard-to-resolve frustration soon!
Roy.
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Postby Eastern Front » Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:08 am

43rdRecceReg wrote::O One month would be being patient, Mike. Two would be stoic, but still hoping for an immediate resolution.
Approaching four month's wait is going well beyond stoicism, and - I would suggest- into ANGER. @)
How can there be a shortage of plastics, when a good deal of the Pacific is awash with them :eh: ?? :crazy:
Hope you get some relief from this hard-to-resolve frustration soon!
Roy.


True about the pacific ocean,,,and in California they now charge 10 cents per little plastic bag!!

Cheers!
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Postby STHV » Tue Dec 04, 2018 4:04 pm

I have never built a Hooben kit but from what i have heard the kits are decent

The RTR vehicles however are a different story
They are awful if their Maus is anything to go by

I ordered my Maus on the 27th of April and was told there was a 3-4 week delay to receive it, it arrived on the 2nd of November and was damaged on arrival and had a ton of issues:

Large parts are plastic like the gun mantlet and all detail parts including the shrapnel guards so its not all metal as described
Parts are missing like the antenna short out guard between the main and coaxial guns and there is no way to charge the FPV headset battery
The FPV system was advertised as 1080p however now that it is here the camera is 720p and the goggles are 480p and cuts out whenever i fire the main gun
The 75mm does nothing other than hold the IR emitter for the battle system
I had to ask to have the MG port added
The instructions are useless and wrong as to open the hull it says to unscrew the side screws this does nothing
The threads for the screws holding the hull roof on are just nuts glued to brackets on the inside
The rear convoy light is held in place with blue tack and is plastic
The turret has been deliberately limited with some switches glued to the inside of the hull roof so it cannot perform a 360 degree turn
There are large gaps between the plates and some of the plates don't even fit (its worse than the real T-34 lol)
It refuses to turn at all despite videos on their Facebook page showing it running without issue and it hesitates every few centimetres when going in a straight line
Almost all the details are wrong, worst being the front of the turret not curving down to the base and instead having a flat plate at the bottom
The turret is very flimsy and made of thin aluminium
There are no sockets for the IR receiver or FPV camera just loose wires so when you take them off the wires just fall into the turret
There is something loose inside the sealed fuel drum that rattles around
one side of the hull roof sits lower than the other
The entire gun assembly rips itself apart due to very cheap soft plastic working against a steel gear and strong motor for gun elevation and has stripped the teeth from the elevation gear and the axle that holds the gun in place has broken off at both ends leaving the gun loose

I am now having to go through my bank to get a refund as after telling Hooben about the issues they stopped replying to me


I would seriously recommend you avoid them at all costs
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Postby Max-U52 » Tue Dec 04, 2018 6:16 pm

If you ordered the tank in August of this year your time is not expired to file a dispute with PayPal. PayPal provides protection for 6 months, so you should be able to file a claim anytime into February. I would do this immediately if I were you. Don't let the time limit expire. I have heard so many horror stories about hooben and how they get your money and then blow you off that I wasn't at all surprised to read about your trouble. It seems to me that this is par for the course for that company, and that's the reason that I don't own any hooben tanks.
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Postby sassgrunt » Thu Dec 13, 2018 6:05 am

HALLELUIAH! I have FINALLY heard something from Hooben's customer service person, Kate. It took nearly two months of not hearing from her, but tonight I got a short message saying that they are still waiting on raw materials, and to thank me for being patient.

Thank you for the advice of filing a Paypal dispute to recover my money, but - truth be told - I am willing to risk losing it in the chance of eventually getting this kit.

I have to believe that posting on here made some sort of a difference. There just aren't that many forums that allow vendor feedback out there; and I'm sure that people in business want to know what people are saying about them. I will continue to update this thread, so that others can consider whether it's worth it to them to deal with these folks, (or maybe to get better information regarding timetables BEFORE sending them their money)!

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Postby tomhugill » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:38 am

If you put a dispute in it doesn't mean it goes to PayPal straight away, but at least it's in the system and stops the clock as it were. I believe you get 180 on transactions these days
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Postby Rad_Schuhart » Thu Dec 13, 2018 9:45 am

Yesterday I read a poor soul in facebook that spent 1.200 bucks in hooben, and SEVEN YEARS later still has not received his tank...
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Postby sassgrunt » Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:11 am

FINALLY I received the kit yesterday! I know that most people would have given up on it long and just filed a dispute to get their money back, but I really believed that Hooben would - eventually - come through. It took almost six months to the day from when I paid for it, and most of that time their communication was either non-existent or just excuses. Like: "lack of raw materials." I really had to ask them about what that specifically meant, and they replied, "Such as tank upper missing." Translated, I believe that meant that they were busy producing Tiger I and FURY tanks, and didn't have production for their VK4501 kits spooled up.

After this ordeal, I would be very reluctant to ever buy anything from Hooben, (or their Ebay outlet Thor Robotics) again. If I did, though, I would write them before I paid anything to ask when they would have it in stock to buy it, and what the time would be for them to ship it after I paid for it. I like their products, but am appalled by what they think passes for customer service.

All's well that ends well. -Mike

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Postby c.rainford73 » Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:17 am

Although it took an eternity ..... ( I for one cant wait for any new tanks or parts.) I'm so happy it's worked out for you :clap:

I expect thier reputation has taken a few dings along with some others in the hobby who have experienced similar problems.
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Postby STHV » Thu Feb 21, 2019 12:42 am

I'm glad you finally got it, make sure you check that is is as advertised!

How is the overall quality?

I wouldn't buy anything from them full stop, i have heard that the fury doesn't even have recoil and my Maus is just a disaster, they gave me the exact same excuses too, if you do get anything else from them i would say make sure you go through a 3rd party seller so you don't have to deal with them, at least that's what i will do if they ever release the metal Maus tracks

I have technically now got my Maus for free as my bank sided with me and gave me a full refund and coincidentally Hoobens parent company, Twin-Horse, has had its website down for quite some time and
Hooben have been completely silent on facebook since Chinese new year
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Postby sassgrunt » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:26 am

I know that most of China shuts down for their Spring Festival (what we call Chinese New Year), for about two weeks starting in early February. So, I wouldn't expect any new Facebook postings from them until after that.

Quality of the kit hasn't changed from the first one I bought a year ago, although the color of some of the injection-molded parts have changed, (turret was blue; now it's black). When I got the first kit, one of the things that really bugged me was their way of gluing a turret mounting-ring into the top of the hull. It stood proud of the hull top, and - combined with the molded-in spacer ring under the turret - made the bottom of the turret stand about 0.200" over the top of the hull. For the life of me, I could not separate the ring from the hull top without breaking one of them, and opted to cut out the bottom of the turret floor so that it would "straddle" the ring. That worked, but made the clearances inside the turret much smaller, and now I have very little room for gun elevation/depression. For this second kit, I asked them....repeatedly....if they would NOT glue in the ring so that I could glue it in myself at whatever height would work for me. I also asked that they not glue the bullet splash angles to the top of the hull, as the G&P vehicle is an early one and doesn't have them. They assured me that they would not glue them on. But, guess what? It was as though I was talking to a wall, and the parts are glued in just like the first one. Oh well; these little obstacles are what makes the hobby fun, right? Ha.

Even with the problems you have had to deal with for your Maus; I applaud you for getting it. I followed MichaelC's lead a couple of years ago, and used King Tiger tracks for the Juckenburg resin Maus kit. It works, but overall is so fragile that it's really not good for running on anything but flat, smooth surfaces. Yours may continue to have "teething" issues, but will be a good runner once you sort it all out, and I'm sure you'll be proud to have it.

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Postby 43rdRecceReg » Fri Feb 22, 2019 11:34 pm

Glad the frustrating wait is over, Mike.
I see that Torro.de list Hooben as a partner. I wonder whether ordering through Torro, might speed the process up? Maybe not...if they really are short of inventory :think:
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