Musafia case from Gostrings

April 30, 2013 at 04:11 PM · I ordered a Musafia case on March 11th and haven´t received it, I called them around a month ago and they told me the case was being made so it will take longer... They don´t answer my calls anymore or reply to any email. But the worst is that I found out I am not the only one...

http://cellofun.yuku.com/topic/15819/What-is-happening-with-Gostringscom?page=2

Obviously, my case was charged right away on my debit card. I emailed Musafia and explained the situation, hoping that my case hasn´t been sent yet to gostrings. Any suggestions that can help would be very appreciated, mine is NOT to buy from Gostrings right now, it looks like they can´t manage the situation.

Cheers

Replies (45)

April 30, 2013 at 06:58 PM · Well, Mr. Ruggieri from the Musafia customer service answered to me already this morning and has been kindly doing it all day, I wish Gostrings would act the same, but they don't, I kept getting the answer machine today as well. They said (at Musafia) that a a delivery period of two or three months is expectable for a case due to the big demand, but that obviously doesn't apply to other items from gostrings and doesn't justify their no contact/ no answer policy . So, I guess I'll keep waiting...

April 30, 2013 at 07:04 PM · Jose,

my experience with Gostings 2 years ago was positive, although a bit frustrating. I ordered a double violin Gewa case that was held by Canada customs for a bit over 60 days. Gosting replied immediately to all my e-mail messages and confirmed that everything was done properly on their side. All I could to is to wait and it did arrive.

In (case of) your case, we can only assume that it is being held (delayed) by Spanish (EU) customs. (I certainly hope that Gostrings instructed Musafia to send it directly to you, not twice over the ocean. Then you would have 2 customs to wait for)

Although the parcel is not too big, it appears that it takes more time to get scanned and checked than it takes for a set of strings, a cd or a book. I hope that you will get your case soon.

April 30, 2013 at 08:32 PM ·

April 30, 2013 at 09:26 PM · Rocky,

What I understood from Mr. Ruggieri from Musafia is that my case, like other ones ordered from Gostrings, hasn´t even been made yet, and obviously not sent to them yet, because yes, as strange as it sounds, it is going to cross the ocean twice, one way to the USA and then back to me in Europe. They (Musafia Company) told me to contact them again if I don´t get it in four weeks, and that so far I am the first and only one complaining about the situation and therefore they can´t do anything. My frustation is due to the absolute lack of information and comunication from Gostrings, not answering mails or phone calls, which I consider has no justification in any decent customer service of any store.

April 30, 2013 at 09:54 PM · About a month ago I ordered a set of strings from gostrings.com. After waiting for my strings, I called them and was told they were out of stock. I called again after another week, and no one answered the phone. Finally I called Gradoux-Matt, the parent company. A flustered receptionist told me that they were undergoing serious "mismanagement" problems with gostrings. I e-mailed gostrings and didn't get a response, so I eventually cancelled my order.

Your Musafia ase might be held up because of internal problems at gostrings.com.

Hopefully, I am wrong. But I thought you and others should know.

April 30, 2013 at 09:56 PM · Last year and prior I had placed multiple string orders, with no issue whatsoever. Great price, selection and fast delivery. I ordered the new larsen strings a couple months ago, didn't see anything in the mail, saw that they charged me the day I ordered, called, sent emails over 4 days, finally they did answer indicating that they were out of stock and should get them in soon, and I should see the strings in a week, which I did. So they had a legit issue, but the lack of responsiveness was annoying for a 70.00 purchase. That lack of responsiveness for a 1000.00 purchase would be unacceptable.

May 1, 2013 at 01:39 AM · I have ordered from Gostrings for the past few years with no issues. However, my last order was unforgivably mismanaged. I ordered strings on Feb. 28th using an $80 giftcard that my MIL had given me for my birthday and paid the difference via PayPal. About a month later I still had not got them. I tried to contact them via email and phone with no luck.

I finally filed a case with Paypal and was able to get the money I had paid back, but was still out an $80 giftcard. I tried contacting GoStrings since then and last night (2 months almost to the day) I finally got a response via eail. They won't refund the value of the giftcard, but I can use it on my next order with them. I can't say I have a huge amount of faith in them not to screw that up too, but we shall see.

Needless to say, I will NEVER EVER be using them again, nor will I recommend them to my students or colleagues. At best they're incompetent, at worst they're crooks.

May 1, 2013 at 01:44 AM · Jose,

I stand corrected: my order was placed with Fiddlesticks (http://fiddlesticksinternational.com/), not with Gostings.

However, I did order a set of Passione strings from Gostrings last year and they arrived in 5 business days with no glitches.

If I were you, I would try ask my bank to cancel the transaction and then order a case from another vendor. It does not make sense for a violin case to cross the ocean twice - I can only guess that those shipping charges are hidden in total price.

Thank you for starting this thread. Perhaps Laurie could create an alert section for cases like this, when there is a consensus that vendor is not up to the task?

May 1, 2013 at 05:01 AM · I've only ordered from them about 4 years ago and it went fine. I do know that the guy that was running the gostrings part of Gradoux-Matt doesn't work there anymore, so that may be the issue.

The more important thing is, I've been running my own string business for the last 4 years and most of my customers have been very happy. The times that I get behind on an order by a few days, I will either refund their shipping (which only costs $1 anyway) or give them a free E string.

Check out iustrings.com and if there's something that we don't have listed, I can add it to the site for you.

May 1, 2013 at 08:50 AM · Another thing that surprises me is the absolute silence from Gostring, I would think that knowing how many unhappy customers are already talking publicly about them the normal thing would be to come out and give a general explanation (and apology) on their web site, facebook or anywhere, since they seem uncapable of doing it privately with each customer. Definitively not a good way to do business.

May 1, 2013 at 08:22 PM · I'm so curious why you purchased musafia case from a site that's based in the USA while Musafia itself comes from Italy and you're living in Spain.

Here in Netherlands there's one Musafia dealer, which is Bouman in The Hague. Things could have been easier if you've purchased it from a dealer that's located in the Europe.

But thank you for the information about gostrings. I'll never check that site again, although I'd never had a plan to buy something there (nor will I ever)

May 1, 2013 at 08:44 PM · Their prices were better and they didn´t tell me that it was made to order, but in the end apparently it would have been the same in terms of waiting time (it takes them around two or three months to make the case), and regarding all the problems with gostrings, that´s something you never imagine it can happen when buying at any reputable place, be in the USA or in Europe.

May 1, 2013 at 11:15 PM · oh okay, i saw the prices just the same when converted from us dollar to euro. i was just wondering, as, if i had the same problem but with the site that's based in europe, i could just get into my car and drive to that place, be it in germany, italy, spain, france, etc, or fly right away (the flight ticket to other country in europe is then cheaper than if i go to the usa). I find it too risky to purchase something very expensive abroad when I can also get it in europe.

I hope you'll still get your case.

May 1, 2013 at 11:29 PM · So, it takes, two to three months to have the case made as it has been explained, no matter where you purchase it from, right?

It's been about a month and a half so far.

Why the need to pile on about GoStrings then?

May 1, 2013 at 11:44 PM · Usually when you order a case through an online dealer it's assumed that they have them in stock, not that you're going to be waiting for months while they backorder from the manufacturer.

May 1, 2013 at 11:56 PM ·

May 2, 2013 at 06:31 AM · Seraphim,

My worries started when I tried to contact gostrings a couple of weeks ago to ask about my order status and I had no answer from them, neither through email nor phone, but, as you say, I found the need "to pile" on them when I did a search on the web and found the link I posted above, with lots of people complaining about the same thing but who had just ordered strings, books or any accesories that certainly shouldn´t take months to be delivered and sometimes they never received them. Of course I have hopes I am going to get my case, especially after getting in touch with Mr. Ruggieri from Musafia, but still think that not answering mails or phone calls from customers is just unacceptable and only contributes to create more panic and hurt their business, which they don´t seem to care about. And, last but not least, I thought it would be good for everyone of us as consumers to know about these issues and sites like violinist.com are the perfect forum for that purppose.

May 2, 2013 at 09:39 PM · Hi Jose,

Seems you have nothing to worry about. I got a reply!

----

Most Musafia are costom made and take up to 3,4 months to be made. Right now we have in stock the Luxury ultra light violin in Blue outside / blue inside and Black outside / grey inside.

Sincerely,

Gostrings Customer Service

----

May 2, 2013 at 09:54 PM · Thank you Vanessa again for your interest, I hope you are right, and congratulations for being the only one that got a response from them.

May 3, 2013 at 01:39 AM · It sure sounds like poor communication. Any product that is not available for immediate shipment ought to be so noted on the web site so that you would know what to expect. Also, if you order something that's usually available immediately but is temporarily out of stock and has to be backordered, the store should let you know promptly so you can decide whether or not you want to wait, order a different product instead, or cancel your order.

May 3, 2013 at 02:09 AM · I know a fine fellow who works - or worked, haven't seen in him in almost a year - for Go Strings. But there's a limit to what one person can do when there is a system-wide endemic problem with the whole organization. You see, Go Strings is just a small sub-division of the large New York dealership of Gradoux-Matt. Let's say that their reputation has been called into question. To be fair, I've consigned to them and eventually sold through them, a couple of extra reference books. And I have a couple of my CD's still there which I'm not worried about. But at one point I consigned a couple of violins to them. They didn't sell but at least I got them back in one piece - indeed at least I got them back, period! I had heard some questionable rumors, but I figured that it was a very visible dealership which should get some attention to my violins. I also wisely gave them to understand that I would be coming in from time to time to play on them and inspect them - which I did. Before I got them back, I had heard from a student of a well-respected cellist and bow maker that the latter (who has since passed away) had consigned one of his own bows to them - and never go it back! "Sorry" they said "we can't seem to find it"!

And now this in the latest issue of The Strad:

A violinist has launched a legal claim against a New York dealer who she alleges lost her violin while it was on consignment – by giving it out for trial to someone who never returned.

A lawsuit was filed on 26 March against dealer Emmanuel Gradoux-Matt (pictured right) by lawyers representing Kyung-Ah Yang, a South Korean violinist who trained at the Manhattan School of Music.

According to the suit, Yang consigned the instrument, an 1837 J.F. Pressenda, in 1998 with New York shop René Morel Rare Violins, where Gradoux-Matt worked at the time. The company was to sell the violin for $285,000, says the suit, but the instrument did not find a buyer.

In 2011, according to the suit, Yang wanted to retrieve her violin from Gradoux-Matt, who had by then parted ways with René Morel and formed his own firm, Gradoux-Matt Rare Violins. The suit alleges that Yang's requests to see the instrument were 'repeatedly ignored, dismissed or avoided', and that in January 2013, with the violin now valued at around $400,000, Gradoux-Matt informed Yang that 'he had let an individual in New York borrow [her] violin for a trial, and the individual never returned'.

The suit continues: 'It appears that Gradoux-Matt conducted no background check, did not request any deposit or other security mechanism or take any other precaution to ensure that [Yang's] violin would not be stolen.'

According to the suit, Yang is seeking $400,000 in compensation damages, along with punitive damages of the same amount. Gradoux-Matt was not available to comment.

May 3, 2013 at 02:21 AM ·

May 3, 2013 at 12:00 PM · Indeed, Sokol is the "fine fellow" I was referring to!

May 3, 2013 at 10:16 PM · There is something really depressing about this thread. :(

It's like watching a train wreck.

May 5, 2013 at 01:21 AM · Gostrings, owned by Emanuel Gradoux - Matt is obviously in serious trouble. Unfortunately Sokol doesn't work there any longer.

In December I needed to buy some strings and went to see Emanuel Gradoux- Matt. He had no strings to sell in his shop, but sent me to Gostrings on the same street. At Gostrings there was complete chaos . Two people were working, but seemed to have no idea why they were there,! They had no strings and I had to go a couple of blocks away to a whole sale dealer who helped me out.

Now a student of mine bought an instrument from Gostrings/ Emanuel Gradoux-Matt. He has sent the money, but no instrument has arrived. Gostrings and Emanuel Geadoux-Matt

don't answer emails or phone calls, so this looks like fraud, or?

I cannot recommend anyone to place orders with Gostrings or have anything to do with Emanuel Gradoux- Matt. Perhaps something has to do with the missing violin on consignment .

The late master Rene Morel was so disappointed and furious with Emanuel Gradoux- Matt, when they split up their

relationship. Fortunately we could still benefit from Mr Morel's undisputed mastery at Tarisio's on 250 W. 54th street until he passed away. Now we are fortunate that we have Morel's " son" , the wonderfully skilled Stefan Valcuha to take care of our instruments and do terrific adjustments. He has a good

ear! He also builds great instruments, I am enjoying very much the violin he made for me. He also has his shop at Tarisio's. While there, you can talk to Carlos who will assist you, if you are looking for or selling an instruments.

May 10, 2013 at 07:27 PM · My experience with GoStrings last December was very good. I had neglected to claim free shipping, and in stead of processing my order as it was, they mailed to warn me, so that I could correct it. For me this was an example of integrity and very good customer service.

June 8, 2013 at 05:18 AM · I wish I had read the boards before ordering from GoStrings in mid_May but I had no problems getting my strings last year so had no reason to think there would be a problem now. However, after charging my credit card over $100 for 4 violin strings, nothing was ever sent; Emails and phone messages are ignored and the phone mailbox is now full. That this company is still taking money while supplying nothing but headaches to musicians borders on criminal, IMO and I think the website should be taken down.

June 8, 2013 at 05:30 AM ·

June 8, 2013 at 08:07 AM · To me they just show all the sings of going bankrupt, and these things happen from night to day, they go from selling online one day - which is what they have been doing for months without shipping the orders- to officially declaring bankruptcy the next one.

June 8, 2013 at 10:20 AM · 13 years is a long time to leave a violin on consignment. Especially when its worth a quarter of a million dollars at the time and rising.

July 4, 2013 at 06:29 PM · I ordered a set of violin strings from GoStrings on May 21. As of July 4 th I have yet to receive my order. I did get an immediate e mail conformation order number from them and the amount did show up on my credit card bill. I have e-mailed them 4 times with no reply. I would advise caution with ordering with them.

July 5, 2013 at 01:59 PM · Yes, more than caution I would strongly recommend everyone NOT TO BUY FROM THEM, they don't ship orders anymore but they do charge you right away... I could tell dozens of cases of people I know with the same problem. Done with gostrings.

July 6, 2013 at 09:52 AM · I would like to add my two cents. I also have ordered off and on from this company over the years, with a few glitches along the way. However, I made the mistake of telling a student to order strings from them in late March or early April, and like the other stories you've read above, they charged her card and never sent her the strings. I'm appalled that nothing has been done to this company yet while they continue to take people's money and not provide them with their order. Just like the others, my student's mom called several times, never got an answer to her emails, and their phone message machine is full. They never once responded, and she never got the strings that she paid for. Everyone reading this can help by spreading the word about gostrings.com and saving future customers from these criminals.

July 6, 2013 at 10:17 AM · Hi folks

If you used a credit card you can approach your card provider and get a chargeback. These days, you can chargeback on most debit cards too. If you paid with Paypal, you can raise a dispute.

As well as recovering your $$$, if the card provider gets a lot of chargebacks they will likely close their merchant account, which would stop them from trading. So there's a double reason to do this.

July 6, 2013 at 03:05 PM · very good advice from Geoff, because of this try as much as you can to always use a credit card to buy online (as then you can get your money back if any problems)

July 6, 2013 at 06:19 PM · Seems to me things changed for the worse when they decided to move the online business to the other building on the same street, far west. Also, I met one of the employees about 3-4 weeks ago, and he was on his way out and very apologetic about how we are unable to call them (mailbox full, etc.) Please do understand that this may not be these employees problem (nobody likes looking bad or appearing irresponsible), but more an apparent lack of organization during a transition period-hopefully they get their stuff together soon, because it is already hurting their business.

I hope that all of you get proper service ASAP, and am sorry this is happening to many of you.

July 6, 2013 at 09:38 PM · If it's taking this long to "get their stuff together," they will probably soon be gone. Selling stuff honestly is not that complicated.

July 6, 2013 at 10:44 PM · Exactly, a simple note in their website with an apology and not charging orders if they cannot ship them would have been enough. Too late.

July 6, 2013 at 10:57 PM · ...not to mention the fact that many people have been left in a lurch when much needed strings were not delivered for important events and whatnot. Inexcusable, to say the least.

July 7, 2013 at 06:06 AM · I used GoStrings for almost my entire time as an undergraduate, but I will never use them again after they mixed up two of my orders for strings (one for violin, one for viola) and never sent me the correct strings despite multiple emails and phone calls.

July 8, 2013 at 10:25 PM · Sad to hear if they are indeed going under since they had become my primary goto, local source for strings and assorted items in NYC.

I was just going to swing by their warehouse to buy some viola strings plus other minor items and then came across these various forum discussions about their business going south. The talk about the lost rare violin on consignment (on top of these backed-up/mistaken order issues) is especially concerning.

Would've warned friends and relatives about potential issues even if/when dealing w/ them locally.

In fact, my sister-in-law just started renting a fractional cello (locally) for my little nephew from them, and I was going to recommend the same for my little niece. I guess problems even at their main shop might help explain why they didn't size my nephew correctly the first time -- even I, with almost no cello experience, could tell it was probably too big for him... plus they seemed to provide a cello bag that was one size too small to boot. Think I will recommend they go elsewhere once they feel it's time to commit to the cello for them -- I might just send them to String House in Rochester instead or maybe Kolstein's in Long Island, if they prefer somewhere closer to avoid shipments.

Just too bad though if GoStrings does indeed go under (or simply stay unusable). I even got a pair of bow rehairs and a quick, minor violin crack repair from their main shop back about a year ago and was looking to give most such business to them...

July 8, 2013 at 10:45 PM ·

March 8, 2014 at 01:05 AM · Reviving this thread b/c I just received an ad online saying that "Gostrings is back!

We're here, once again, to serve you all the best products at the lowest price on the web! Only this time, under new management, operating out of a new location, and with a new commitment to serving you!"

Anyone know about this? I was sad when they became so unreliable, and I'm just a tad wary about this.

The link takes me to the same old page, with no indication of anything new or improved (or any mention of the 15% sale they claim in the email).

March 8, 2014 at 03:11 AM ·

May 27, 2014 at 05:29 AM · With such a poor reputation, why would they continue to operate under the same name. Would be better to set up a new shop. Or maybe just lies...

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