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[at-l] re: warranties / thruhiker attitude

Mark wrote:

>>I know we all want our gear to last forever and I am all for getting gear
replaced when it wears out prematurely, but I must say that I can see this
problem from the manufacturer's viewpoint as well.  I recall reading one
post where someone was expecting their boots to be replaced after 10 years
of wear.<<

and Dean wrote:

>>Unfortunately, I was not impressed with Asolo's customer service, either. My
Asolo AFX 530's delammed coming into DWG.  I called their customer service
line and they began to give me the 3rd degree.  After a series of questions
they said that I was using the boots in a way that they never intended (i.e.
long miles with "heavy" loads) and that I got about as much mileage on the
boots as was to be expected.  I had started wearing them in Damascus. 

>>Gear does wear out on a thru hike, and in general the support from the
manufacturers is great.  As with everything a little patience and flexibility
go a long way in overcoming these minor tribulations.<<

some good points mentioned above.

gear manufacturers have been burned by individuals exploiting their
warrantee policies.  and i've known thruhikers who try to take advantage of
liberal return policies.  this kinda harkens back to the thread on trail
magic/treatment of thruhikers.  just because you're thruhiking doesn't mean
you're ENTITLED.  expect to justify your complaint with truthful data.

it will help to have some realistic expectations as to life of gear.
someone earlier wrote that he thought a thru-hike would be equivalent to
about 6-10yrs of "normal use."  that seems about right to me, too.  i'd
expect a good tent or pack to last that long or longer, but maybe not a
pair of boots or a water filter (depending on model).

as an example (and this is only my own reasoning), i'd expect a decent
leather BOOT - ie designed for hiking - to last at least 1000 miles before
needing any attention.  if i got 800 miles on the AT out of them and they
started to wear out, in all honesty, i'd have to say they did their job.
i'd expect a leather/fabric boot to last fewer miles, and a sneaker type
boot many fewer still.

in 92, i had HEARD that one sport guaranteed their moraines for 1000 miles,
so i felt justified in calling after the toe peeled after 400 miles.  they
agreed, luckily.  similar situation with miriam's asolos.  they should last
more than 400 miles.  but after more than 700-800 miles i can't expect a
manufacturer to admit any defect in the boot.

there's a definite grey area here, but it's worth asking yourself "am i
justified in asking for this, or am i claiming thruhiker privilege?"

woah, that soap box was so morally high, i need to rappel off of it...

ke kaahawe

 .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .    .
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Michael Henderson		mikeh@royalrobbins.com

There is more to life than increasing it's speed - Ghandi
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