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Ripstop Repairs vs Boulder Mountain Repair
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By Dave Swink
From Boulder, Co
Jul 9, 2012
Mark E Dixon wrote:
Until Hank starts up his new business, I, for one, am grateful for the public service Ripstop provides. If you adjust your expectations, and approach the transaction as if you were requesting a favor from a stranger, you will probably end up a lot happier. Mark


Yup, as a I posted above, I was not greeted with enthusiasm but the guy insisted on discussing what I wanted in professional detail and the work was top-drawer plus the cost was surprisingly low. I would definitely take gear there again but I would not expect sunshine or emails, and I would not take a real rush job in there. If I lived out of town, I would have too think hard about driving in just to pick up repaired gear without a verification that it was done, for sure.

My take is that Ripstop is what it is. They don't pretend to be otherwise.

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
Jul 9, 2012
Dave Swink wrote:
If I lived out of town, I would have too think hard about driving in just to pick up repaired gear without a verification that it was done, for sure.



And when they won't answer the phone, won't notify you when it's ready, won't reply to e-mail, and won't empty their voicemail box, how exactly would you propose getting a "verification" in that case?

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By Newton
From Colorado Springs, CO
Jul 9, 2012
Monastery action.
I'll just add my experience here. I went to BMR when they were in Table Mesa shopping center, and they essentially told me they were too busy to repair my backpack any time in the next month. Not a bad experience, I appreciated the honesty. FWIW a good friend had some awesome customization done by them about 7 years ago- building a frame system into a frameless pack. They helped him design, he picked up some parts at McGuckin's and they did a great job.
I cruised on to Ripstop, they took in my work, listened to what I wanted done, and gave me a date to pick it up. I did so, and everything was done far beyond my expectations. Fantastic quality work, extremely low price, and it was turned around relatively quickly (more importantly, it was done when they said it would be done).
So from my experience, Ripstop is the best. I like the no nonsense customer service- it's straightforward and keeps prices down. I don't need to feel like I'm a special snowflake when I go in there, I just need to get my shit fixed. They do that and they do it well. Maybe the telerepair experience is not so great, or maybe folks are expecting to much handholding, I couldn't tell ya.

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By Mark E Dixon
From Sprezzatura, Someday
Jul 9, 2012
At the BRC
Will S wrote:
And when they won't answer the phone, won't notify you when it's ready, won't reply to e-mail, and won't empty their voicemail box, how exactly would you propose getting a "verification" in that case?


Ask a local to stop by next time said local goes to Rock and Resole?

Mark

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By alley jim
Jul 9, 2012
Does anyone know the phone number for Rock and Resole??

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By Cor
Jul 9, 2012
black nasty
ask rascal...

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By Dave Swink
From Boulder, Co
Jul 9, 2012
Will S wrote:
And when they won't answer the phone, won't notify you when it's ready, won't reply to e-mail, and won't empty their voicemail box, how exactly would you propose getting a "verification" in that case?


I hear ya, Will. My intent was to suggest that I would probably not use them if I wasn't local, or visiting Boulder frequently for other reasons, because of the verification problem.

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By Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Jul 10, 2012
Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Pea...
How do you know what people read about you, Jim? You are the one Googling your company name and drawing conclusions about what others read about it. Ha ha ha.

And yes, I did in fact note that the guy complaining completely f'ed up the return address, which is something I have had to deal with recently myself. Annoying, right?

That's pretty advanced stuff cutting and pasting Mia's face on your "No Mia" button. Do you do your own Photoshopping, too? You have some Internet photo skillz, brah. Why not try to be less of a dick once in a while to a walk in?

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By BDergay
From Eldorado
Jul 10, 2012
Jayy-Dogg on rappel
I'll dive in here with a story:

First off, several of my friends have know Jim for years and they speak highly of his work, but caution that he's not even a little bit of a people-person, and to not expect that. That's fine-- I used to work for Dave Waggoner at CCH back in the day and I know the type. And I too am there to get a job completed, not make some new chatty buddies... So I have zero problem with that...

But I took a sleeping bad to Jim to replace a blown zipper.. and to this day I'm still confused about what happened... Like I said, sleeping bag, blown zipper needed replacing-- no special requests, no impending dead-line demands.. but within moments of discussing it with Jim, he became angry at me..... I'm still scratching my head over what happened.... Here I was looking to pay him... yet he was chastising me for coming to him to replace a zipper on a sleeping bag..... I even went back outside to check the sign over the door to make sure I was at a place that did fabric repairs! Needless to say, I left.

Dude- we get you're not a people-person, and I (and I'd assume most here) are totally willing to overlook that as, like I said, I was looking for a zipper replacement, not a buddy... You need to go work in the back with your favorite machine and let someone else deal with the public. You oughta try to get Kyle back in town and have her run the front of the shop!

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By Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Jul 10, 2012
Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Pea...
Some people will tolerate house cats that just up and scratch them for no reason.

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By Tits McGee
From Boulder, CO
Jul 10, 2012
How I Send
This thread is funny. It should be called, "Boulder Problems."

I have been going to Ripstop Repairs since I first moved to Boulder. Jim's work should speak for itself and does. If you are looking for some feel good customer service, go to REI. If you are looking for someone who is highly skilled at fixing a piece of gear that was never designed to actually be repaired (planned obsolescence) go to Jim. It's not his fault you put six crampon holes in your soft shell pants or busted your zipper on your sleeping bag. He will fix it. Sure, he's not the most civil, polite, friendly person, but I don't go there for that.

If you don't have a thick skin, don't go there. If you like to pay 2-way shipping and wait 4-6 weeks for a repair, ship it off to Rainy Mountain.

If you have read this and still want to go to Jim, but are nervous about how scary and mean he is...Don't be. Your repair will heal any wounds you may incur from your feelings being hurt.

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By beth bennett
From boulder
Jul 15, 2012
i hesitate to add my 2 cents worth but here goes: i've always had great work from ripstop. no you don't get it back the next day and jim can be brusque but i wouldn't characterize him as rude. what i look for is quality workmanship and i have always gotten that for what i considered a great price.

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By Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Jul 15, 2012
Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Pea...
One should never hesitate to add their contributions here, even Ed what's his name who deleted his comments. I am now a princess, too! See, I felt that pea you put under that mattress down there. Please remove it.

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By Cindy
From Golden, CO
Jul 15, 2012
I've always had excellent work done by Ripstop, at an extremely good price, and very helpful input on doing a few repairs myself. Their buiness model doesn't have prices that support typical customer service, like phone calls and emails or friendly staff at the front counter. That's just how it is, but they do great work.


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By Princess Mia
From Vail
Jul 16, 2012
Chillin' at City of Rocks
I didn't realize that they have a "business model"!!!!!

Perhaps they should trademark it.......and then they could all retire......

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By alley jim
Jul 17, 2012
Where to start…

Busy day. Little Debbie from Rockn’ and Jamn’ gave me a big smile, do you know she was Yelped as being “the nicest lady I've ever met”. Patagonia showed up a little early so we had to scramble. Marcus picked up his new custom stuff on his way over to Switzerland. Fabrizio just got back from Alaska and needs a bunch of mods. Summer is always a breath of fresh air. The BRC dropped off a bunch or pad covers. (shout out to Tony for the libations…) Not a bad morning for an asshole hermit.

Stich
Fifty percent of what customers?

Contract repairs? Short run manufacturing? Design and Product Development? Somebody I’m helping with a start-up? Guides? Some of the big companies that realize a week before the trade show that their samples from Asia are FUBAR’d and need to be fixed yesterday? Do you have any idea WTF I do here??

I have a repairs studio downstairs (where I make problems go away) and a design studio upstairs (where I make dreams come true).

I never suggested that you throw your gear into a “black hole and hoping for the best”. I’ve clearly stated several times that you should take it back to a retailer and/or the manufacturer. They have customer service people that get paid to answer your phone calls, return your e-mails, answer your questions, blow sunshine up your butt, ship, receive, bill, whatever…

Frances Fierst
That must have been a couple years ago. I’ve got less and less time for custom projects but I’m glad you were happy with the sewing. Thanks.

Frank PMS


Nick Wilder
Those must have been adventure travel pants with the zip-off legs. Those are a PITA and we no longer work on those. Try the tailoring shop next door to Walnut Café.

Hank Caylor
Why bother starting your own shop. Fixing other peoples old dirty backpacks is not as glamorous as it sounds. Why not work at Ripstop? Start tomorrow! I’m pretty busy and could use the help. If you want to entertain customers, that’s cool too. We could make some lemonade and give neck massages while they wait. You could answer the phone get caught up on e-mails. But remember, you are paid on a piece-rate and only get paid for the repairs that you finish. When can you start?

Oh, and don’t forget that the person in the window set’s the prices and basically controls the work-flow and cash-flow. Plus, I’ve got financial obligations and mouths to feed.

Tony B
It sure sounds simple enough. The only problem is that you never know what the next repair is going to be so you need every kind of webbing and buckle in every color and width, a wide variety of fabrics, threads, coatings, Gore-Tex, down, etc…

Mark E. Dixon
“If you adjust your expectations, and approach the transaction as if you were requesting a favor from a stranger, you will probably end up a lot happier.”

Wow, that’s beautiful…

Stich
You have to trust that there are systems in place. Take it to the store or send it to the manufacturer. Don’t make this more complicated than it really needs to be.

Tony B
You can probably get an old sewing machine at a yard sale for $50. Light machines are full of plastic parts. Heavy machines are full of metal parts. Get one you can just barely lift. The simpler the better. Take it to Wallace Vacuum & Sewing Chalet to be oiled and tuned up. You can still get parts for popular brands (Singer) and may need a beefier throat plate and feed dogs for heavier sewing. Be sure to ask about larger needles (size 20 and up). Most fabric stores have a section in the back corner with heavier duty stuff.

We only use 100% nylon size #69 thread on packs, all closing seams are 2 rows of sewing and usually another row on the binding tape.

Dental floss makes bomber thread for hand sewing. The waxed variety is easier to use. Plus the mint makes your Crazy Creek smell better. I give away bobbins of thread that are too old to use but still have value in a first-aid kit. Pro Tip: Instead of buying a thimble to push a needle through several layers of fabric and webbing, you can wrap a bunch of layers of cotton tape around your pointer to do the same thing.

Dave Swink
“My take is that Ripstop is what it is. They don't pretend to be otherwise.”

Wow, hold me.

Will S
This guy needs a hug.

Newton
Does anybody else hear the common theme? High quality, low prices.
Be careful what you say about “special snowflakes”. (It’s been kinda quiet up in Vail recently.)

Dave Swink
I remember before the Bush Era when we had this thing called “trust”. That’s when people said they were going to do something and they did it. Ripstop doesn’t really do “verification”. The local people who can just roll in and not be all stressed are typically happier that people that drive 3 hours and need a lot of reassurance and “verification”. If you are long distance and nervous and have lots of questions and don’t trust anybody and are heavily medicated, please send your stuff to Rainy Pass in Seattle. (Be sure to send lots of pictures and e-mail them at least 2 or 3 times a day) Ripstop Repairs is not accepting boxes at this time.

BDergay
Is that the fiberfill WOODS of Canada bag that’s been here for 3 years? You had me pulling this place apart looking for a red bag. I’ve got a black bag with a red lining (the draft tube goes on the inside) that is probably yours. Please pick it up before I give it to some homeless guy. The zipper is an antique Talon coil and it would be way too expensive to replace. We dug around in our parts bin and found an old slider (NOS) that works.

Stich
I’m not really into house cats and I’ve never scratched anyone for no reason.
Some people like (want/ need) dogs that jump up all over you and lick your face and won’t leave you alone. That’s not me. I’m more of a Border Collie/ Heeler mix. I’m back in the corner under the coffee table. I see you before you see me. I’m not going to bite you, but I’m not going to lick you either. I guess you could say I’m indifferent. I can see how that might frustrate people who need verification.

Mia
Realize means; “to comprehend completely or correctly”. I would agree that you don’t realize anything about me.

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By Dave Swink
From Boulder, Co
Jul 18, 2012
haha! The distillation of Ripstop....took a while getting here but worth the wait.

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By Stich
From Colorado Springs, Colorado
Jul 18, 2012
Coffee after freezing our asses off near James Pea...
There is a long continuum from touchy-feely to indifferent to outright hostile customer service. You definitely strike me as indifferent and use the word to describe yourself as well. Not something to be all that proud of, but all sorts of people are in love with their own "I don't give a shit" flags that they sewed together over the years.

When you have a piece of gear and you won't return phone calls, e-mails, or smoke signals about its status then the transaction falls apart. If you live in Boulder, great, you can waste the time on making umpteen million attempts to drop by and talk to someone (certainly not the per piece sewers, since they are not paid to handle customers).

Make all of the funny responses you want to obfuscate this. Your "system" is a PITA to deal with on the communication side. Period. So when all goes well, great. But when stuff gets lost, something gets confused, etc. watch out.

I just thought of a solution to anyone walking in that can't get any service. Pull out a five and say, "Five bucks if you talk to me."

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By Hank Caylor
Administrator
From Golden, CO
Jul 18, 2012
Pure bliss..
alley jim wrote:
Hank Caylor Why bother starting your own shop. Fixing other peoples old dirty backpacks is not as glamorous as it sounds. Why not work at Ripstop? Start tomorrow! I’m pretty busy and could use the help. If you want to entertain customers, that’s cool too. We could make some lemonade and give neck massages while they wait. You could answer the phone get caught up on e-mails. But remember, you are paid on a piece-rate and only get paid for the repairs that you finish. When can you start?


No way jim, I'm an Electrical Contractor in Golden and business is a boomin'! I think I still owe you 10bux tho..

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
Jul 18, 2012
Stich wrote:
I just thought of a solution to anyone walking in that can't get any service. Pull out a five and say, "Five bucks if you talk to me."



I got a better one. Bring a coat hanger with you and take that little retarded weiner dog hostage. "Get yer ass out here and provide some basic communication or the hanger goes up Rascal's ass and he gets roasted on a spit over my 350 4 barrel in the parking lot. I gotta a tank full of gas and a cooler full of PBR, let's get this BBQ rollin', son. Now who brung the chips?"

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By Princess Mia
From Vail
Jul 18, 2012
Chillin' at City of Rocks
Oh Will S.......

Rascal is super sweet and we simply could not harm him, plus he belongs to the great folk next door at R&R..........

But I like the coat hanger idea.......

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By Will S
From Joshua Tree
Jul 18, 2012
I'd never do that Princess, I actually love dogs.

But there's always the military tactics from our little Panama adventure...get some giant JBLs, point em at the compound, crank up some Slayer or industrial thrash metal to vol 12 and deafen them/drive them insane until they relent...I guess that only works if A. They don't like thrash, and B. They're not already a mental case (which seems to be a 50/50 proposition with this stellar example of a businessman).

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By Summer Time
Sep 18, 2012
We hiked-down perhaps 50’ off the summit, then dro...
Wow, I just stumbled upon the perfect opportunity to rip-on Ripstop Repairs. As much as I’d like to, I just can’t. Because Ripstop is my end-all-be-all when it comes to honoring the ‘reuse’ in the reduce, reuse, and recycle concept. And on top of their high-quality repairs, this shop does offer the grittiest customer experience in-town, consistently. Why would I ever knock that?

Jim has single-handedly breathed new life into my favorite gear (that no gear manufacturer would mess with); he re-enforced the bottom of my 15-year-old Lowe Alpine pack. And he has patched and re-patched a few pairs of my pants and gaiters, so they're 'good to go' for yet another season. I even prefer the functionality of the simple “big dumb bag” by Boulder Design (his company) over my super-pricey Timbuktu messenger bag.

Jim knows his craft - there is no doubt about that. And his prices are more than reasonable.

And sure, he does have a maddening side, I don’t dispute that. But I just chalk-up Jim's zany ways as part of the unique pretty-please-work-on-my-gear customer service experience enjoyed at Ripstop.

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By alley jim
Sep 25, 2012
Here is a video from a start-up I work with. My shop starts at about 2 minutes in. It really doesn't look that scary.

kickstarter.com/projects/20174...

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By Kirk Miller
From Golden, CO
Sep 28, 2012
Bugaboos, 1978 Photo by Ken Trout
beth bennett wrote:
i hesitate to add my 2 cents worth but here goes: i've always had great work from ripstop. no you don't get it back the next day and jim can be brusque but i wouldn't characterize him as rude. what i look for is quality workmanship and i have always gotten that for what i considered a great price.


Gotta bump dat!

Props to Jim,
My dog took a chunk outa my down hoody. I dropped it off at ripstop and came back after the required duration and couldn't believe they made it look like new. I can't tell where the original damage was after the repair, no shit.

Ya just have to go there in person, later in the day, and don't carry an attitude; these guys are wizards at what they do but they're not there to hold your hand.
Cheers

FLAG


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