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Learn From My Experience - Buy From a Dealer

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  • Learn From My Experience - Buy From a Dealer

    If you are considering buying a launch monitor/simulator setup, I suggest purchasing from a dealer. If something goes wrong, a dealer may be able to help you out, because the sim companies don't care one bit about individual customers. Here's the lowlights of my recent experience.

    In late January I was ready to buy a launch monitor. I was set to buy a SkyTrak and TGC2019, but the projected 4-5 month shipping delay turned me off. I had been considering the Mevo+ anyway, and since the ship time was way shorter, I went with a Mevo+ and a lifetime TGC2019 license. I was having trouble getting it setup; the instructions that come with the device are a joke. I made an appointment with their tech support, which they missed. I finally got through to them, and they were eventually able to help. But it was clear that the Mevo+ wasn't going to work well in my space. When I asked about a refund, they said sure, but there would be a $300 "restocking fee". I understand having to pay for their trouble, but $300? C'mon. So, I decided just to sell it.

    I ordered a SkyTrak, even though they were still showing a 4-5 month shipping delay. I received it in 5 weeks. They obviously have no clue about their supply chain. I could have avoided this whole experience if their shipping projections had been more accurate. Only after I setup the SkyTrak did I learn that I can't use my copy of TGC2019 with it. The first 2 SkyTrak customer support people I talked to couldn't/wouldn't tell me why they are the ONLY launch monitor that doesn't allow a license transfer. The 3rd one finally told me that it is due to how the device firmware is programmed. It's programmed so you can transfer the license key off of it, but not onto it? Their software developers are either idiots or geniuses, I'm not sure which.

    I contacted ProTee about a refund. I was told no refunds, because I purchased the license from FlightScope. But they said I can sell the license and pay a fee to transfer it. The fee is over $350. Again with the ridiculously high fees.

    My last ditch effort was to contact FlightScope about a refund. No luck. Because of the way the TGC2019 purchase works, everybody can conveniently wash their hands of any responsibility. FlightScope has no obligation, because it's not their software. ProTee has no obligation because you didn't purchase from them.

    So here I am with a new SkyTrak, a $1000 TGC2019 license that I can't use, and my initial experience has completely ruined the enthusiasm I had for getting a golf simulator.

    Moral of the story: purchase through a dealer and hope you never have to deal with any of the sim companies directly.

  • #2
    Not sure how buying from a dealer wound have helped any in this situation. Most would charge a restocking fee to return a used launch monitor. And I doubt they would have done anything differently for the tgc license.

    but yeah that sucks.

    Comment


    • jtwigen
      jtwigen commented
      Editing a comment
      Yeah, I agree the end result may not have gone better had I purchased from a dealer. But I am sure it would not have gone any worse.

  • #3
    That really sucks but most of us could have helped you avoid that nightmare.
    I know it's too late now but my 2 cents would have been save yourself the headache and buy a used gc2 and use your license. 😞

    Comment


    • jtwigen
      jtwigen commented
      Editing a comment
      I don't think I could have been talked in to spending the extra thousands for a GC2. But where this group might have helped me is providing actual delivery times for the SkyTrak, and I would have ordered it in the first place. Which is also where a dealer may have provided more help, by knowing how fast their customers were getting them.

    • Wizard of Coz
      Wizard of Coz commented
      Editing a comment
      Many of us started with skytrak then moved to gc2. In the long run getting a used gc2 first would ultimately save you $$$ and gives a better experience. Resale has been strong too so if you ultimately bail you generally can get your investment back and sometimes a bit more. 😉

  • #4
    1. How much profit did you make on the Mevo? They were selling above retail for quite a while.

    2. Why not sell the TGC license? You won't get all your money back of course and there is the transfer fee, but it's better than sitting on it and not using it. People sell their licenses all the time here. The profit you should have made from the Mevo should help cancel out some or most of the license transfer.

    3. There is a lengthy thread on this forum about skytrak shipping times. Even if you were unaware of this site at the time, a Google search for "skytrak shipping times" returns that thread in the very top spot. "4-5 months" was underpromising/overdelivering during a pandemic when their supply chain was all screwed up. For a while it was taking 3 months, so the 4-5 month estimate wasn't far off. So you're right --- they didn't have a good idea of their supply chain. But there was a global pandemic going on causing chaos everywhere. Flightscope also got really backed up as well with the Mevo supply chain. Hard to fault them for not having a better idea of the shipping times considering the circumstances.

    4. You made an impulse purchase of a Mevo without taking the time to determine if it would work in your space or not? That's a pretty fundamental thing to research before making a $2000 purchase. You say the whole thing could have been avoided if Skytrak's shipping times were accurate. But I think the whole thing could have been avoided had you just done your homework first.

    5. I don't think buying through a dealer would have changed things much. The shipping times for dealers were longer than the direct orders. A Mevo from a dealer is still not going to work in your space. And they are typically at the mercy of the rules of the manufacturer regarding licenses.

    I don't think you should have lost much money. If you sold the Mevo at the market rate at the time, you would have pocketed a few hundred bucks (I don't advocate price gouging, but that's what the re-sale market was like at the time). That profit would have covered the transfer fee for the TGC license (especially if you had sold the Mevo + TGC license together). By my count, you should be out like a hundred bucks.

    I'm sorry that you've had a rough experience, but it also sounds like you're being quick to deflect blame when it was actually an impulse purchase that put you in that situation to begin with. Don't let it deter you from enjoying your new sim. Sell the TGC license, take your losses and chalk it up to a lesson learned.
    Last edited by 3on3putt; 05-03-2021, 01:17 PM.

    Comment


    • jtwigen
      jtwigen commented
      Editing a comment
      I did not make a profit on the Mevo+, but I didn't lose money on it, either. The Skytrak wasn't an impulse purchase. I had done plenty of research, and frankly the two were neck and neck. I I knew it was going to be tight on space for the Mevo, but that wasn't the real issue. What I did not realize though, is that the Mevo needs everything in the environment to be ideal to work well. The ST pretty much just needs to be sitting next to the ball.
      Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place, but I haven't seen much of a market for TGC licenses, either for buyers or sellers.
      I understand the supply chain problem, to a point. My bigger issue with ST is that they are the only manufacturer that doesn't allow the license transfer. I would understand if they were also the developer of the TGC software. But it comes from a 3rd party. The hardware should be agnostic, just as it is for the other device makers.
      I'll eventually cool down from my experience, pay the cost for the license and start enjoying the Skytrak. And maybe others here will learn from my experience/mistakes.

    • 3on3putt
      3on3putt commented
      Editing a comment
      jtwigen -- Just create a new thread advertising your TGC license for sale. They pop up from time to time. (And it looks like Drew might be interested below anyway). Shouldn't be too hard to unload it and at least recoup some of the money back.

      If it makes you feel any better, I would bet that nearly everyone here has pissed away money on their simulator setups unnecessarily. I know I have. I tried to DIY a couple things that I had no business DIY-ing before cutting my losses and buying one. And I probably went through 3 different mats in the first few months before I found one I was happy with. It's a hobby, and hobbies can be money suckers. Best of luck with it all and I hope you're able to still get TGC so we can see you out there in the tournaments.

  • #5
    I sympathize with the frustration. You can save a ton of money buy DIY'ing a build and for many that is the only way it is affordable, but the journey can be a challenge with some financial risk (100's of dollars, usually not 1000's). Its not a game of perfect and there is likely to be some mistakes or course correction required. I was lucky in that a good friend built a sim at the same time as me and we helped each other through the design, software installation, configuration, etc. We also decided early on GC2, which helped. This forum and related discord channels are a very important resource.

    The compatibility, transfer issues, and multiple players in the software space especially with TGC 2019 do make me wonder what the future will entail. Likely to be bumpy.

    To OP, stay the course. My simulator is one of the best toys I have every bought. TGC 2019 is awesome with all the course options. Having launch monitor data and ability to hit balls in inclement weather is a breakthrough for my game improvement. That fact that it is a bit of work to establish the functional simulator makes it that much more rewarding.

    Comment


    • #6
      I've been thinking of picking up tgc. Pm me and we can discuss the tgc software for the mevo. I'll pay the transfer fee and we can figure out a price that works for both of us.

      ​​​

      Comment


      • #7
        Lol...You originally reached out to me because I was interested in buying your ST license but never got back to me...now I see why. I will be moving on and buying it direct as it serves as no purpose to buy a used ST license unless someone on here can comment otherwise. Best of luck to you and your situation.

        Comment


        • Wizard of Coz
          Wizard of Coz commented
          Editing a comment
          Buy a Gc2 and transfer the skytrak license. You can put 💄 on a 🐖 but it's still a 🐖.

          Actually I loved my skytrak and the skytrak range but i won't ever go back.
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