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Author Topic: dealing with print damaged at framers  (Read 2357 times)
nairb
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« on: November 02, 2012, 10:41:09 PM »
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I've been selling unframed prints for about two years now, and I'm wondering how others deal with a situation where a print gets damaged at a framers and needs to be replaced.

This has happened to me several times now. Twice in the last week. This time, the person who bought the print saw the damage after the framing was done and demanded the printer replace it. He assumed I'd be selling the framer a new one at full price which is $600.

All the other times, the framer contacted me before framing it and before the customer knew of the damage. Most times I assume the customer never learned of the print being replaced.

This time, in both cases I charged 50% for the replacement. Is this too much? Too little? The first time it happened, I bartered for some framing for another piece at the equivalent of the full price, and sent more customers to that framer in the following year.

Now this time, they paid the 50% but when the replacement arrived, demanded a refund as they felt I should charge no more than it cost to print.


Thoughts?
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Bryan Conner
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« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2012, 12:10:34 AM »
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If you damaged the frame while hanging it in the customers home, how much would you have to pay for a replacement frame at the same shop?
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nairb
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« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2012, 12:27:05 AM »
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That would probably depend on the frame shop.

The reason I asked this is question is because I've not been in the situation from the other side and I don't know many other business people. The framers are probably always going to want to pay little or nothing.

The first time this happened, more than a year ago,  the framer related a story about having someone bring in a peter lik piece which they wanted dry mounted. The framer said he wouldn't touch it as he knew how expensive it would be to replace.

As most of my pieces are sold unframed (ie. Unfinished) to people who are travelling, and mostly going to Calgary and edmonton, I'd also like to avoid having my pieces turned away at framers because of the cost of replacement.

Edit:

I guess I should also add that when I've replaced them (they're numbered and signed but not limited),  depending on the urgency, they'd be replaced with the next number in the series, then the damaged one would be destroyed and that numbered print then reprinted later when time permits. Whether the framer gets the same number or the next in the series depends on the urgency. It takes longer to print, dry, package a new one then to ship a prepackaged one. Its this that the framer is upset about partially. That they shouldn't have to pay for a replacement of the same number other than cost of production. They happen to be a printer too and said they were aware of these costs.
« Last Edit: November 03, 2012, 12:52:04 AM by nairb » Logged
Bryan Conner
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« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2012, 04:36:33 AM »
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Many frame shops make a huge profit margin on frames, and this is ok.  But, they should not be against others making a profit.  That is why I asked what their policy is if you damaged a frame while installing it.  There is no difference between a damaged print and a damaged frame.  You have to either decide on what your policy is and stick with it.  Your policy has to be one that leaves you without any regrets at the end of the day.

I used to tell my customers that if they had a print damaged while having it framed etc, I would replace it for them at no charge as long as they returned the damaged print to me.  The replacement print would have the same number as the damaged one as it is an exact replacement.  I never had to fulfill this promise, but I was always prepared to do so.  I looked at it as being an investment in the future.  I would hope that the customer would return to me for more business.  As I said, I never had to do this, I am not sure how I would actually feel if I had to do it...lol.  But, I think that I would be able to live with it. 

To sell the replacement print at a lower price is to reveal your private business information.  So, I would either replace the print for free, or at full price, nothing in between.  And I would always bring this subject up when the original order is placed, or before, whichever is appropriate.

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framah
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« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2012, 08:58:00 AM »
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As a framer, I have only damaged one piece in my 19 years. First, I called my insurance company and then I called the customer to get the contact info of the artist and then I bought another and sent the receipt to my insurance company.

I HAVE had stuff come in that was already damaged from shipping and showed the customer and had them contact the artist and the artist usually sent a replacement with the stipulation that the damaged one be destroyed.

If a framer damages something, THEY are responsible for replacing it at WHATEVER it costs to do that! Period.  They may get lucky and have the artist cut them a break but they shouldn't expect it as a right.

You seriously need to find another framer!!! There is NO excuse for their sloppy work.
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nairb
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« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2012, 09:18:34 AM »
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Thank you.

This has actually happened at three different framers, chosen by the people who bought the prints.


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nairb
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« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2012, 03:09:31 PM »
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Would love to here of other peoples experiences with this...
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David Watson
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« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2012, 05:59:32 PM »
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Had a similar experience with two very expensive prints (circa 3500 each).  The first time was because the photographer had signed the print on the reverse and the signature indentation showed through and the second was when a few "dents" were discovered by the framer when he unpacked the print.  In both instances the prints were returned and replaced at no cost.  If the framer had been responsible I would have thought that it would be entirely reasonable to charge the replacement print at cost after received a returned damaged print.

What is being sold is not a piece of paper it is a possibly limited edition image delivered on a paper substrate.  IMO photographers should never quibble about replacing damaged images at cost (materials, labour and handling).  This is just good business sense and an ethical way to behave.

I would stress that this can and should only be done once the damaged print is returned.
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David Watson ARPS
Ellis Vener
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« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2012, 07:39:08 PM »
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As a framer, I have only damaged one piece in my 19 years. First, I called my insurance company and then I called the customer to get the contact info of the artist and then I bought another and sent the receipt to my insurance company.

I HAVE had stuff come in that was already damaged from shipping and showed the customer and had them contact the artist and the artist usually sent a replacement with the stipulation that the damaged one be destroyed.

If a framer damages something, THEY are responsible for replacing it at WHATEVER it costs to do that! Period.  They may get lucky and have the artist cut them a break but they shouldn't expect it as a right.

You seriously need to find another framer!!! There is NO excuse for their sloppy work.

"framah" has it exactly right.
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Ellis Vener
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Creating photographs for advertising, corporate and industrial clients since 1984.
bill t.
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« Reply #9 on: November 13, 2012, 06:36:04 PM »
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When I sell prints that will wind up at a framer, I always include a note offering free replacement in the event of damage by any cause.  At the very least, one should have agreements of this type with local framers who are significant sources of business.

So far I'm 1 for several hundred!  Maybe it puts the framers on their best behavior.

The note includes the stipulation that I must receive an envelope-sized cutout from the center of the original print before providing a replacement.  But I'm such a sweet guy I would probably make exceptions. 

Having done quite a bit of framing myself, I feel sympathetic to the plight of framers most of whom don't make the huge profits commonly supposed.  The majority of those guys are hanging on by the skins of their teeth as business plummets and materials costs increase.
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framah
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« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2012, 08:57:27 AM »
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Amen to that, Bill!!

 Some months  I can barely make my Mercedes payment!! Grin
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"It took a  lifetime of suffering and personal sacrifice to develop my keen aesthetic sense."
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