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Honestly I think there is almost nothing dumber than a tool review.  Marc does a nice job but any review should come with so many caveats attached that it is not even worth doing.    I guess if something sucks out of the box it is not worth buying.  But I care more about how a tool or machine performs a year or two down the road.  Does it keep its settings?  Does it have annoying tendancies that aren't immediately obvious?  Dealer/manufacturer support?   None of these things can not really be understood without a true longitudunal study.  None of the woodworking magazines do this, as far as I know.  Consumer Reports will do it for some cars.  Cooks Illustrated does it for kitchen equipment (they literally put stuff in their kitchen for a year and come back and tell you how it held up).  Fine Woodworking did do a  year long test of outdoor finishes (the only one that held up was Epifanes, shocker).  

For tool reviews I stick to Amazon customer reviews.  If something is a dog it will usually show up there.  

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For tool reviews I stick to Amazon customer reviews.  If something is a dog it will usually show up there.  

I'm there with you.  Amazon reviews are quite consistent.  Although. .. they do censor out the really terrible ones. I have had a few reviews pulled for being  overly critical. .

Who me?

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Another reason tool reviews are useless is because there is a certain percentage of product that is expected to fail. Amazon reviews often reflect this.. 12 or 13 five star reviews and one guy "The item never worked." He was just unlucky. Sucks to be him.

For me reviews are tricky. I like Marc's because he tells you - here is how it compares to the supposed gold standard Festool, here is why its unnecessary to pay extra, etc. Thats really what I'm looking for. I want to know, is the Bosch Glider going to be 90% as good or more than the Kapex? How it stands up over time isn't that important to me cause that ends up being luck of the draw. Every person you see that has an item that exploded after 12 months there are a couple of other guys been running it for 20 years.

I don't think I ever let a review dictate my buying decision but it's a factor.

Case in point - When I went shopping for a washer/dryer, I was looking at High Efficiency reviews. like 50% were negative and said, "Does not get clothes clean." Somewhere along the line I found one review that said, "please ignore the negative reviews, these people are loading the washer wrong, you HAVE to follow the instructions with HE." I ended up buying that one and it's been 3 years with no problem at all because I followed the directions. The reviews factored into my choice, but it became obvious to me that people were just using it wrong.

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I'm there with you.  Amazon reviews are quite consistent.  Although. .. they do censor out the really terrible ones. I have had a few reviews pulled for being  overly critical. .

Who me?

Amazon does not edit or delete reviews unless it violates one of their policies.  Using profanity or otherwise inappropriate language is the most common reason.  There are other rules that you can find on their site if you care for further explanation.  Manufacturers and dealers have no control over the reviews...if it's an honest negative review that sticks to the actual product and doesn't use inflammatory language, it will not be removed.  Amazon is highly regarded by customers for its honest reviews...they know this and they like it that way.  They have no interest in choosing winners or losers and they want the customer to have access to as much information as possible.

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i think reviews are a reasonable place to start but more importantly i like hearing "I have been using xyz for abc years and ...."

i have a skil 1830 router. gets occasional use, works fine.  was not expensive.  do i think it would hold up to heavy daily use, probably not.  I don't expect it to.  my old cheap ass black and decker router still going after nearly 30 years, why would my skil be any less. the only thing i don't like about it so far though is that the led light shines through the whole in my router table on some cuts and gets me in the eye.

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yeah eric,  that sounds all well and good until they do censor and you realize at the end of the day, they are still a business. 

Amazon censoring reviews is a very well documented practice. A simple gargle will pull up enough examples to show this is not a one time anomaly. 

Edited by Brendon_t

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It's always done for a reason and it's NOT because someone reviewed something negatively.  I repeat...they have no interest in picking winners and losers.  What they want is the best customer shopping experience every single time you buy from them...and honest reviews are a part of that and a part they fully embrace.  Amazon is firmly rooted in the free market...they let the customers decide demand and Amazon prices accordingly...assuming it's not a manufacturer controlled price point.  If an item is junk and doesn't sell well because of negative reviews, they stop ordering more of that product for sale.  They don't care.  They're way too massive to waste their time editing reviews on one stupid little product.

You can get on gargle and find people who swear we never landed on the moon or that Elvis is still alive.  Doesn't make it true.

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yeah eric,  that sounds all well and good until they do censor and you realize at the end of the day, they are still a business. 

Amazon censoring reviews is a very well documented practice. A simple gargle will pull up enough examples to show this is not a one time anomaly. 

 

It's always done for a reason and it's NOT because someone reviewed something negatively.  I repeat...they have no interest in picking winners and losers.  What they want is the best customer shopping experience every single time you buy from them...and honest reviews are a part of that and a part they fully embrace.  Amazon is firmly rooted in the free market...they let the customers decide demand and Amazon prices accordingly...assuming it's not a manufacturer controlled price point.  If an item is junk and doesn't sell well because of negative reviews, they stop ordering more of that product for sale.  They don't care.  They're way too massive to waste their time editing reviews on one stupid little product.

You can get on gargle and find people who swear we never landed on the moon or that Elvis is still alive.  Doesn't make it true.

I was curious so I did do a google search on amazon censorship.  It seems they will censor a reviewer if they have reason to believe the reviewer is selling good reviews, hasn't actually owned the item being reviewed, or is simply writing reviews to get their own review count up.  Anectodotally it seems this happens most for book reviews, where I guess a bunch of good reviews can really drive sales.  Also, authors like to write so it makes sense they would be guilty of making up reviews.  

One guy who had all of his reviews removed (1700 or so) passively admitted that he might not have read all the books he reviewed... 

Edited by Guest

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They didn't even censor reviews of the book about Jeff Bezos. It painted a not very great portrait of the guy. Even Bezos wife left an amazon review calling the book lies. I'm surprised that isn't the only review on the book.

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Amazon reviews can be quite comical. If nothing less, they serve as proof that censorship must be fairly slow if it exists. 

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Eric, I agree with just about everything you are saying in theory. 

I buy from amazon all the time and am pretty good at going a massive review of paSt purchases every few months. 

Recently I left a negative review on a Dallas Cowboys jersey that washed and hung dry once.  The iron on patches mouth flaked completely off and a seem was already fraying. I retorted this in the review and my review was posted for a few days then removed. This isn't a one time thing.  Over the last five years, I've proabably had 5 review go live then removed later. Maybe the manufacturer is flagging them but still,  no break of the rules,  true, thought out, albeit not great reviews of amazon verified purchases are removed.  Period. 

The theory is good but my personal experience differs and using BS you COULD find on the Internet is irrelevant.

Edited by Brendon_t

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If you use the term "BS" in your review, that's a cause for removal.  If you're that interested in pursuing it, I might go back and review them, and see if there's any questionable language.  A manufacturer cannot have a review removed simply because it's negative, but if your wording violates an AZ policy, then the AZ rep will remove it simply because it was brought to their attention and it violates a policy.

This is a great case for Occam's Razor.  AZ has no vested interest in removing negative reviews.  None.

 

--->The theory is good but my personal experience differs and using BS you COULD find on the Internet is irrelevant.

It's relevant when you tell me to go look at google to support your claims.  Can't have it both ways.

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If you use the term "BS" in your review, that's a cause for removal.  If you're that interested in pursuing it, I might go back and review them, and see if there's any questionable language.  A manufacturer cannot have a review removed simply because it's negative, but if your wording violates an AZ policy, then the AZ rep will remove it simply because it was brought to their attention and it violates a policy.

This is a great case for Occam's Razor.  AZ has no vested interest in removing negative reviews.  None.

 

--->The theory is good but my personal experience differs and using BS you COULD find on the Internet is irrelevant.

It's relevant when you tell me to go look at google to support your claims.  Can't have it both ways.

I can tell your passionate about this topic and we're not going to agree because my reality and your reality differ.

Might as well drop it because it'll never go anywhere. 

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Has nothing to do with passion. You just entered into his world and made some assumptions about what he knows intimately. If you had something deleted out of order, it was a single employees act and not the policy of the company. We have all seen that in various businesses. It is not hard to conceptualize. 

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yeah eric,  that sounds all well and good until they do censor and you realize at the end of the day, they are still a business. 

 

To me, this is the money quote in terms of what you're trying to say.  You imply that they have some kind of business rationale for censoring reviews other than for bad language.  What would that business rationale be?  Why would they risk credibility among their customer base (arguably their most important intangible asset) just to help out a manufacturer?  It just doesn't make any sense.  

Edited by bgreenb
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Your first problem started at Cowboys jersey. :D

The dryer was just trying to help you remove the word Cowboys from your jersey. 

Hung dry man. I've got half a dozen nice stitched jerseys, this is a cheaper one for my son for a school "team spirit" day.

 

 

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I can tell your passionate about this topic and we're not going to agree because my reality and your reality differ.

Might as well drop it because it'll never go anywhere. 

Excuse me sir.

Hi. This is the Internet Authority letting you know that your next logical step was to call him a Nazi. Please, we implore you, treat Internet rules with respect! This keeps everyone's experience consistent from site to site.

If you'd like to leave feedback, our site is http://www.GodwinsLaw.com - *note - we do remove negative feedback as part of company policy.

 

Thanks!

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I can tell your passionate about this topic and we're not going to agree because my reality and your reality differ.

Might as well drop it because it'll never go anywhere. 

A case for the Schrodinger's cat.

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I've always wondered, what is it about the MFT that is so great? It looks like a table with holes in it. Above my skillset to build, probably but everyone else wouldn't have a problem!

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I generally only tap into one thing on the MFT: cross-cuts. I originally bought an MFT (pre-TWW) for my business. I was making so many plywood cabinets and getting good consistent square ends on my wide cabinet and bookcase sides was a constant annoyance. The MFT fixed that problem. So I bought the MFT for rock-solid dead on 90 degree cross-cuts on sheetgoods.

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