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I apologize that I have nothing important to add here, but I just stumbled across this thread after getting out of this group buy a few years ago and.......man, am I (and a few others) extremely lucky to have gotten out of this group buy near the end of 2018, and actually refunded.....
I would probably buy an Expert 9 again if I knew I could actually get a Merkle weight, but I was still trying out different HK's back in 2018 and got rid of mine. Great shooting pistols - I'll probably always wonder what the difference feels like shooting with the weight attached.
I hope that he finally comes through on his obligation to you all. I think it's extremely obvious that even though he had a solid record of transactions in years past, he received something like $12,000 USD in his bank account for a 'hopeful' transaction with a company that was not yet ready at the time to take the order. He may have truly had honest intentions at the beginning of the group buy. Obviously, this shows that any future group buy should not start collecting funds unless the manufacturer involved is 100% ready to receive the funds. (There should be no instance where the money would 'sit' with the intermediary for ANY length of time.) Still, there is a risk in trusting an intermediary with your money - I guess the only reason to have one in the first place was because the transaction was across continents, which increases the opportunity for fraud.
With such a large sum in his possession, obviously some temptation or 'emergency' (real or contrived) compelled him to spend some or all of that money for his own purposes. Maybe he's been desperately trying to make up that money in the meantime (still an evil act, but perhaps he's trying to set things in order), or maybe he intends to run forever until the messages don't reach him. Time will tell. In that case, he may eventually get what's coming to him.
Group buys in the future should follow the rule that the money shouldn't 'sit' with the intermediary, and there should be a definitive timetable (less than 6 months, if PayPal would even provide protection - which for our hobby they definitely don't).....but I apologize for the long rant - I'm repeating what is totally obvious to everyone at this point. Hoping the best for those on here that are owed money or weights.
Last edited by TLOU_Joel; 06-13-2020 at 05:34 PM.
The "money sitting" thing is the rub. In order for most Group Buys to work, the order must be paid for in advance at each stage of the transaction. IE: The manufacturer wants to be paid in advance for the production run, the facilitator does not have the inclination to front this sum, the customers must pay up in advance. There are all sorts of really good reasons for doing this. Mostly that everyone is trying to protect themselves from risk of failure. If the end buyer is not required to pay up front, then there is a HIGH likelihood that there will be many who ghost the deal, leaving the facilitator holding the bag. And the manufacturer is not going to take a flyer on the facilitator's word.
So it winds up being a situation of trust. We have now had two MAJOR incidents on this forum from group buys. Both appear to the result of the faciltators being unable to make good on their commitments and then ghosting with the funds after a long series of promises and excuses. That is a concern. And this aspect should be considered before anyone chooses to participate in another. Especially if there is not an already established track record of success.
yes, I will have whole order in August - even all Elites (25 Elites and
22 Experts). I send all emails and confirmation of the order from Merkle to the burtontester.
Also I payed 1/3 of the whole order as a prepayment, will send the confirmation to the burtontester too.
They sold out almost all Elites during lockdown in Germany, after the post office were open again for international shipping they had only four 45 Expert left.
But they will make me all 47 weights for me in two months.
And I will shipp them to the USA to burtontester as I promised.