Newbie + punch disgruntlement = frustration

First: hi.

I found you guys a few weeks ago, and have been getting inspired, joined the group, and started posting before ever introducing myself.

And I've been so inspired! I've been using a Palm for several years now, and inevitably end up with post-its stuck all over it. I've been in denial: I love paper. I admit it. I love wandering the aisles in office supply stores, stroking the pages of journals, trying nice new pens...it's wonderful. And I have boxes of old discarded pens and pages from planners to prove it!

But I've been so inspired to get the paper together. Bothing has worked so far, and I loved the Circa/Rolla ideas. So I went to Staples and bought 2 notebooks. I ordered the incredible sampler pack from Levenger. I started working with 3x5 cards. Time and paper management are improving!! I ordered a punch. And that's where my disgruntlement started.

Levenger told me they were back-ordered until Jan 13th, 2008.

So I ordered through Rollabind. They sent me a confirmation email, charged my card...and nothing. It's been over a week since they charged me, and I called them this morning. They said they're terribly backordered, and that they came in yesterday, will be shipping today.

So why don't they share this stuff?? I'm angry, I've bene checking my mail every day for over a week, having read so many times that they're quick to ship, and they didn't bother to tell me they were going to take my money and hold it until they got their shipment in??

I've never dealt with a company that charges you for a product they don't have in stock. Period.

Are any of you having similar issues?

This is simply not a great intro to Circa/Rolla, and it's taking the shine off my excitement, almost making me ready to quit and cancel the order. It's not so fun when you have to fight for it.

Sorry for the rant, I'm just frustrated, and having been so inspired, I hate to have anything ruin it!

erika

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Welcome, and Rollabind

Hi erika, welcome to the tribe. Honestly, we need to have a secret handshake or something so when we see another person fondling journals at Office Depot we can know that they're a DIYer and not just some creepy paper fetishist.

Re: Rollabind. There was some rumor for a while earlier this year about their management possibly being replaced? When I placed my order for discs from MC2 (see https://mc2office.com/Catalogue_FR/mnbc_Etalage.asp?idCatego... for deep discounts!) the gentleman I spoke too said that MC2 was dropping Rollabind as they were too hard to deal with -- bills didn't get paid, shipments were late, etc.. This is probably cold comfort, but it might give you some insight.

I was under the impression that Rollabind did not sell directly to customers, but rather to retailers (like Wilde-Ideas and scrapbook shops) and licensees (like Levenger and Staples.) If you were able to order a punch direct, then things have changed in the six months since I went punch-hunting.

I hope the experience hasn't soured you: the whole Rolla/Circa setup is very cool, and has inspired me to make major changes with my organizational attitude at work.

Good luck, and happy (eventual) smurfing!

Thanks!

Thanks, Friend, for the info and the welcome.

When I tried to call Rollabind this morning, I learned that the company has been split.

If you google for Rollabind, you'll find Rollabind.com and Rollabindsystems.com. The former sells to the public, the other does not. Customer service with the corporate portion is fabulous. She spent probably 20 minutes with me on the phone trying to figure out where my order was and what had happened to it. Then we both searched online to find the place I'd ordered from. When she determined it was the other portion of the company, to which she had no internal access, she gave me a phone number (with extension) to call Rollabind/Crafters. It was this part of the company that really got to me. The fellow who answered was awful - didn't look up my order, tried to get me to give him my phone/address/email/etc. all over again - he was writing it down!! I finally told him it was all in my account and he said OK, and goodbye! He told me about the backorder almost as soon as he answered the phone.

My first impressions of the 2 companies: yes, Levenger costs more, but Rollabind takes their portion in patience. I will not be ordering from Rollabind again, but I loved working with Levenger! I will not cut that cost corner again. I have better things to do with my time and money than fight with Rollabind/Systems/Crafters/whatever-they-are.

The great divide

Ah, there you go. I agree with you on the Levenger issue -- you're paying for the customer service (and the shipping *sigh* but there's a topic on that elsewhere.) When I decided to order my punch, the choice was Levenger or Wilde-Ideas. Comments here about the service, and the fact that we have a Levenger employee on the forum convinced me to go that direction. I don't regret it.

Levenger's customer service is tops

That's been my experience in all my contacts with them. They've taken back items I ordered and found issue with, helped me track down the last available item on clearance, refunded me the difference when the price changed on an item, exchanged items that I've had for weeks (mostly unused), etc. Ryan Rasmussen, who posts here, has been very helpful in some of those transactions, but even if I contact them directly, they have been unfailingly helpful and productive.

That level of service is getting harder to find nowadays, and it's gotta be worth something.

I do wish their shipping rates were lower, but the packaging has been excellent.

Walter

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"The only reason for time is so that everything doesn't happen at once." Albert Einstein and Buckaroo Banzai

Update

I phoned Rollabind again yesterday, and got the same person with the notebook trying to write things down. He promised "1000% sure" that my order shipped yesterday (I called in the late afternoon), and that I would receive it by Friday. He said they had been "extremely backordered".

I'll be sure to let you know when it arrives.

If Levenger wasn't so backordered, I would have ordered from them (I tried to, first). But I have paper piling up, I'm using a system I can't add to without a workaround (hand-snipping punches).

That's my biggest frustration with Levenger ...

There's no warning about backorder or low stock at the time you place the order.

(Okay, that and the shipping costs.)

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"In some situations you need to ask yourself 'WWRD?' What would Riggins do in a situation?"
Landry Clarke -- Friday Night Lights

Punch back order seems to be cleared

A few weeks ago the Levenger site listed the desktop puch as backordered until sometime in January--so I ordered the portable punch--its works great...solid, metal construction (not like the plastic crap that Franklin sells as portable punch). Then last weekend, I noticed the availability date for the desktop punch had been moved up to 30 Novemeber. Last nite I noticed it was listed as "in stock"--so I ordered one. I have to wait and see if it's really in stock, or the date has been adjusted just to avoid loss of Holiday sales. Levenger seems like they're a bunch of straight shooters, so I'll be surprised if I don't get the punch by the end of next week.

engineer

Mine's been shipped

I got an e-mail late on Wednesday saying my punch had been shipped, after being informed that the date was December 30.

Fortunately, I was able to cancel my order with Wilde-Ideas in time. (c:

t.

Punch from Levenger

Did somebody say Levenger has great service? I ordered a desktop punch online in the wee hours Thursday morning. I paid for 2-5 business day delivery--not the overnight. It came this morning. About 52 hours from order to arrival! The punch is one hefty mechanism. The only plastic part on the whiole thing is the smurf compartment lid that doubles as the non-slip non-scratch bottom that actually comes in contact with the desk. In my opinion well worth $58 plus S&H. Has anyone out there actually compared a Circa punch and Rollabind punch side-by-side?

engineer

Levenger vs. Rollabind punches

At around $60 each, I don't think anyone has both the Levenger & Rollabind desktop punch. But from the pictures and descriptions I think the only differences are the branding and Levenger's punch punches 11 holes (for letter size paper) and Rollabind punches 12 (apparently a standard size for scrapbooking pages is 12x12").

If there is anyone who has both, or at least has tried both, could you please post a comparison? Or maybe ygor will pop up and say "Google is your friend" and provide a link if there is already a comparison :-)

-Kenny

Have Both

I have both. Crazy I know. Is there anything in particular you want to know about the two? The only real difference I noticed between the 2 are the number of punches. 11 for the Levenger punch and 12 for the Rollabind one.

I'm crazy, too

One for home (rollabind) and one for the office (levenger). I like the Levenger better -- no particular reason -- I think I'm just used to working with 11 instead of 12 punches. It's easier for me to line up my letter pages on the Levenger correctly by just eyeing it. Otherwise they both feel and handle the same.

I bought the rollabind punch on sale at wilde-ideas with the thought of making my own scrapbooks. Haven't got on to that project yet...

Paper guide?

Doesn't the Rollabind craft punch lack a paper guide? The Levenger punch has a little metal ruled slidey-thing that you use to try and ensure that your first punch is 1/2" in from the edge of the paper. I thought that the Rolla punch did not have that, but I may be mistaken.

I like having a paper guide, as I can eyeball it when I'm doing one or two sheets, but if I'm doing a stack, the guide keeps my paper edges lined up. Important for an anal-retentive freak like myself.

Rollabind does have a paper guide

My rollabind punch does have the metal ruled slidey-thingy.
I don't think I ordered it from the craft side of the site though; I'm pretty sure I ordered it from the business side. People have said that the two are actually distinct entities now.

-kmorris

Eyeball it

I find the guide less than helpful. What I use is the vertical line on the punch heads to line up my paper.
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"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

Eye-ing too

My Rollabind punch has a rather slack paper guide so I have to eyeball every sheet as it goes in. For most of my purposes, jotter pads and the like, near-enough is adequate but there are some materials that need precision. So I check twice; cut once.

Hrm

Having never played with a Rollabind punch, I don't know if yours is the exception or the rule, but the Levenger paper guide has tactile and audible feedback as you move it. There are little grooves every 1/16" along the bottom of the guide, which clearly "click" into place as you slide it along, and the top of the guide has 2" marked off. I like it, but again, I'm REALLY retentive about this sort of thing. Uneven edges in my planner would upset me greatly.

I've got a Rolla

Hi.

Mine's a Rolla, and it's got the click/feel.

I have noticed that if you remove the sliding bar, there's a bit of metal beneath it that should curve up in an arch (at the pointer). The arch has a little bump on top, and the slider has grooves on the bottom side. That's what gives the feedback, the bump rubbing on the grooves under pressure from the arch.

So if you don't get clicky feedback from your punch, check your arch and the bottom of your slider. :) If you're missing one of the three elements (bump, grooves, or arch) you will have no feedback. If your arch is just kinda flat, you might be able to fix that if you're moderately handy. The arch assembly is removable if you take the plastic piece off the bottom and turn the metal bit upside down.

shris

Reep's punch

Reepicheep's punch came from the same batch as mine, and several others'. I know my punch works properly, and I've heard nothing from others to suggest that this was a norm... I'm afraid Reep's got either a defective one, or a part got lost, or something. I have wondered if his springy piece of metal is misshapen--but if I were in his shoes, I would be afraid of bending it!

Reep. If it's missing, let me know. We may be able to work something out here...

-Jon

More an inconvenience

The slight wobble in the paper stop is more of an inconvenience than anything else. Means I have to double-check the position before I press down on the handle. Conventional hole punches for 2-ring binders are much much worse and I live with their lack of precision. ;-)

Blame the spacing

Hi.

The punches are actually 25mm apart, I think, not a whole inch. This makes it quite inconvenient for US paper sizes.

I thought for a while you could make one mark for whole-inch alignment and another one for half-inch alignment and you'd be home free. Not so. Because of that pesky spacing, just a hair shy of an inch, the alignment mark for, say, a 2.5" business card is quite different from an 8.5" piece of paper. Same with a 3x5 card vs a letter sheet on the long side.

That bites if you ask me. Sux to be global (tooling) and backwater (paper sizes) at the same time.

shris

You're right!

I was posting to tell you how wrong you were, but luckily I checked first.

Yes, the smurfs are 25mm apart from one another, not 1" (25.6mm, IIRC). And it does in fact bite. Time to insist on buying A4 and A5 paper! ;-)

Sensible cutting

Hi.

I would love to have sensible paper sizing on this side of the pond. The european way of having each standard size be half of the size larger and twice the smaller size is eminently sensible if you ask me.

The US is soooo slow to change. I think it's a miracle, frankly, that cars show metric speeds on the speedometers and rulers often show metric measures too. Making the leap, though, that's the tough part. What a vast change it would be to see A4 reams in the local stores..

shris

I'm Envious

My back-ordered punch was shipped, but it was shipped via SmartPost (or whatever the least expense, longest time option is), when I'd paid for Express shipping on the order.

::sigh::

Please, USPS, deliver me my punch!

t.

good luck -- i just posted

good luck -- i just posted on another thread about my punch. It's gone to places (Wisconsin?) I've never been to. Even though I paid for regular FedEx ground. Even though I live in TN. Even though it shipped from Memphis, TN.

It's here!

My Rollabind punch and "disk assortment" arrived yesterday!

I ran around Circa-fying everything I had piled up and ready to punch!!!

And to let you know - the big disk assortment from Rollabind Crafters came neatly sorted in a big plastic sorting box - 20 each of 18 different colors/sizes. No pastels, no metal, just normal colors, in more than one size of each.

Oh! And score another convert - my 7yr old son saw them, and when I told him what you could do with them, he was so excited I could hardly get him to bed! "And I can make drawing books! And dinosaur books! And volcano books! And...And...And...!!"

Hooray!

Welcome to the Dark Side! Those little smurfs are darned addictive.

I like your son's attitude, too!

thank your son for me!

He gave me a great idea. For my niece and nephew I made them each a book, with their favorite colors. Coloring pages with princesses and dinosaurs and christmas stuff for her. Word puzzles and mazes about pirates and spiderman and Hogwarts for him. And to gain points with the in-laws I used Discovery's puzzlemaker pages to make puzzles out of the extended family names.

And the best, Project Gutenberg has an illustrated copy of "A Goblins Christmas" that went into his book as well. I think I may make myself one of those!

So thank your son for some great ideas!

-kmorris

How cool!!

What awesome gifts! You have some lucky kids to spoil...

I'm planning to make a 10-year journal from the template here at DIY and give it to a friend as a gift. Pretty-fy a cover, print the whole thing out...Should be fun!