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Covid Casualty or Deliberate Fraud? Not such a Great Circle


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Anyone else have a problem with getting their sails from Brian Hancock’s company, GreatCircle sails?

I ordered sails October of 2019. He gave me an unbeatable price for a carbon fiber/aramid string sail. A 140% Genoa form my Baltic 51.  Literally less than half price of the quotes from major lofts. I called a few of his provided references and they were all happy with the sails he provided. Brian is a famous sailor and writes articles for major sailing publications. I gave him a substantial deposit for half the value of a sail. I measured my boat using his instructions. I later added to the order an additional sail, a freestanding staysail. Covid hit and delayed things. That was understandable. He delivered to me a Selden furler for the staysail in the interim. 

However, he subsequently disappeared. Didn’t respond to emails, texts, FB messenger or phone calls.  He then months later reappears and blames the contract loft he uses. He tried to reassure me that he will get the sails made. Meanwhile, I had referred a friend to him who needed a mainsail. My friend got a cruising laminate roller furling main which although delayed, arrived last summer, 2020. It’s well made with excellent workmanship.

Brian then disappeared again in terms of communication. We had become friends on Facebook.  I was able to figure out which loft Brian was using, and contacted them early fall of 2020 to see if they were producing sails. They did not respond initially, but late November the loft reached out to me stating that Brian never gave them the deposit money. They stated that they had started the sails for multiple customers for Brian on credit. They asked me if I had heard from Brian because he was no longer communicating with them.  I have no way of verifying this, but someone else reached out to me with the same experience that I have had. They paid for half the  cost and never got the sails, and Brian stopped communicating with them. 
 

The contract loft agreed to construct the sails for only the balance due which is more than reasonable. I’m out the shipping which was supposed to be included.  I tried one more time to reach out to Brian. I let him know the loft had contacted me and was willing to complete the sails. I asked him to send me the anti torsion line he had told me was in his possession for my staysail. I asked him to refund the deposit less the cost of the furler and anti torsion line. I would forward that to the loft. I never heard back from Brian. 
 

  I received pictures of the sails in construction and forwarded the balance to the contract loft and am awaiting the sails to arrive. My fingers are crossed but I should have them shortly. 

I post this to see if anyone else has had the same experience. Someone else has started legal action against him in Massachusetts.

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Well that sounds like an awful situation you’ve been dealing with.  I’m glad you seem to have sorted things out, albeit with some agita attached.  I will say that I always got a weird vibe from the articles that he has written here.  In his telling, the world of sailing, in which he is a self described rock star, has aggrieved him to some extent.  All of the big names of his generation that he was pals with have somehow maintained their bona fides and careers in the industry, while he has essentially written a bunch of articles seeking to promote his contributions to the sport while also setting up a sailmaking import operation while dishonestly designating himself an actual sailmaker.  By the sounds of it, if he intends on keeping the import operation going, he’ll need another supplier.  

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13 minutes ago, eliboat said:

Well that sounds like an awful situation you’ve been dealing with.  I’m glad you seem to have sorted things out, albeit with some agita attached.  I will say that I always got a weird vibe from the articles that he has written here.  In his telling, the world of sailing, in which he is a self described rock star, has aggrieved him to some extent.  All of the big names of his generation that he was pals with have somehow maintained their bona fides and careers in the industry, while he has essentially written a bunch of articles seeking to promote his contributions to the sport while also setting up a sailmaking import operation while dishonestly designating himself an actual sailmaker.  By the sounds of it, if he intends on keeping the import operation going, he’ll need another supplier.  

Apparently, he pissed on a 30 yr friendship with the loft owner. Very sad. I personally feel badly because I referred other people to him after the initial contact and great price. People who have gotten sails from him, were the references I checked. They were all happy with the quality of the sails that came from the loft. 

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There’s another poster here who basically did the same thing a decade or so ago. One failure sets up a chain reaction when your a small loft/middleman for a real loft. 
 

I ordered a set of 3 sails for my Fareast28R in May from a local sailmaker who’s been soliciting me for a while( I have several boats) and said “No rush.” I didn’t hear back from the loft until October. The sails were ready in July and they forgot to call me. Simple mistake with no bad intent. The boat’s for sale in the classifieds now and the next owner can unbox the new sails with the new rig, rudder, etc I bought this past spring.

 

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3 hours ago, gn4478 said:

He gave me an unbeatable price for a carbon fiber/aramid string sail. A 140% Genoa form my Baltic 51.

Everyone likes to bitch about North & Quantum's prices, but they deliver and when something isn't right, they fix it. 

I once worked for a small business / contractor, who funded funding his ongoing operations (aka alimony and a coke habit)  with new customer deposits. It all works fine until something like COVID interrupts the new business, and then good luck finding him... the money's gone.

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On 3/8/2021 at 10:28 AM, Starboard!! said:

Everyone likes to bitch about North & Quantum's prices, but they deliver and when something isn't right, they fix it. 

I once worked for a small business / contractor, who funded funding his ongoing operations (aka alimony and a coke habit)  with new customer deposits. It all works fine until something like COVID interrupts the new business, and then good luck finding him... the money's gone.

I have had good and bad service from the majors as well. It is totally unethical for someone to not deliver downpayment dollars. Maybe fraudulent. I don't know what really happened but whatever it was, it was unethical. He advertises here. I don't think he has the courage to defend himself here about my situation. I have every correspondence documented. During the entire year and a half debacle, I was nothing but polite, patient and understanding of his personal and financial situation. His final disappearance was pure cowardice.

.

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To answer the direct question: I worked with Brian to get a membrane mainsail a couple of years back, which came in on time (though, when you order in the late fall in New England, "on time" has about a four-month margin for error) and was beautifully made.  I also ordered a stack pack along with the sail, which came in a different shade of the color than I ordered.  I asked for a future discount as recompense, which Brian said he'd give me, but I haven't used it yet.  He's also done my sail maintenance each offseason, gratis, and has avoided upselling me when I've given him the chance.  All of this came in at substantially less than what North quoted me for a conventional Dacron mainsail alone, and came with none of the attitude I got calling the North loft.

I obviously can't speak to anyone else's experience with him, and he's certainly a bit quirky, but I've been happy working with him overall.  Sorry to hear that others haven't had the same experience.

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33 minutes ago, ChrisJD said:

To answer the direct question: I worked with Brian to get a membrane mainsail a couple of years back, which came in on time (though, when you order in the late fall in New England, "on time" has about a four-month margin for error) and was beautifully made.  I also ordered a stack pack along with the sail, which came in a different shade of the color than I ordered.  I asked for a future discount as recompense, which Brian said he'd give me, but I haven't used it yet.  He's also done my sail maintenance each offseason, gratis, and has avoided upselling me when I've given him the chance.  All of this came in at substantially less than what North quoted me for a conventional Dacron mainsail alone, and came with none of the attitude I got calling the North loft.

I obviously can't speak to anyone else's experience with him, and he's certainly a bit quirky, but I've been happy working with him overall.  Sorry to hear that others haven't had the same experience.

Your experience was the typical response I got from the references I checked. I checked 4 or 5, both cruisers and racers. He is an extremely pleasant guy, easy to like and trust with conversation. I'm sad he chose the low road with me when under stress.

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3 minutes ago, gn4478 said:

Your experience was the typical response I got from the references I checked. I checked 4 or 5, both cruisers and racers. He is an extremely pleasant guy, easy to like and trust with conversation. I'm sad he chose the low road with me when under stress.

I'm sad to hear that too.  I've seen family dig themselves into a hole during bad times, and can only hope there's an explanation that doesn't line up with what it looks like.

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I had an awful experience with Brian. The sail was very late, was supposed to be delivered in March didn’t come until late July. My sail was built by Durtek in Sri Lanka. Brian first told me the delay was because of martial law. I managed to contact the loft manager and he told me that was an absolute untruth, my sail had been completed weeks ago and was waiting for Brian to pay for it. Brian denied this, and became increasingly difficult to contact. During the ordering process I repeatedly told Brian my boat cannot carry a sail bigger than 105% LP. When I got the sail it was 110% and unusable. He refused to refund the money I had paid him and would not take the sail back. he said his designer decided a 110 LP would be better. No matter how inexpensive he is don’t be tempted to buy anything from him. He lied throughout the process, was not knowledgeable, and overall acted like a complete scumbag. I have dozens of emails that document everything.  He is a piece of shit
 

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12 hours ago, gn4478 said:

He is an extremely pleasant guy, easy to like and trust with conversation.

Maybe only due business with rude people, b/c if they are rude and still in business, they must be doing something right.  

But has anyone ever met an unlikeable con artist? 

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3 hours ago, Salona said:

Maybe only due business with rude people, b/c if they are rude and still in business, they must be doing something right.  

But has anyone ever met an unlikeable con artist? 

Excellent point!

 

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12 hours ago, Phil Latio said:

I had an awful experience with Brian. The sail was very late, was supposed to be delivered in March didn’t come until late July. My sail was built by Durtek in Sri Lanka. Brian first told me the delay was because of martial law. I managed to contact the loft manager and he told me that was an absolute untruth, my sail had been completed weeks ago and was waiting for Brian to pay for it. Brian denied this, and became increasingly difficult to contact. During the ordering process I repeatedly told Brian my boat cannot carry a sail bigger than 105% LP. When I got the sail it was 110% and unusable. He refused to refund the money I had paid him and would not take the sail back. he said his designer decided a 110 LP would be better. No matter how inexpensive he is don’t be tempted to buy anything from him. He lied throughout the process, was not knowledgeable, and overall acted like a complete scumbag. I have dozens of emails that document everything.  He is a piece of shit
 

Someone told me they were able to file in small claims court in MA online. That person already has.

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16 hours ago, Salona said:

Maybe only due business with rude people, b/c if they are rude and still in business, they must be doing something right.  

But has anyone ever met an unlikeable con artist? 

Weeelll I mean I can think of one very well known one that easily fits that description...

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, the sails just arrived to the US from the South African loft. I'll have them later this week. When I am able to take a look at them, I'll post my impressions. I thank Craig for being a stand up guy for finishing and delivering them directly to me after Brian Hancock disappeared with my deposit.

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  • 2 weeks later...

So after hiring a customs broker, I was able to get the sails from JFK airport to my home. I brought the sails to a major loft for inspection and modification of a staysail to add an antitorsion line that Brian Hancock from Great Circle Sails said he had and would install. He refused to respond by email, iMessage, text or phone to confirm he was still willing to do so.  So, in the end, I am out the cost of shipping, the customs broker and the anti torsion line.  On the plus, the sails look like they are well made with good construction technique and materials. Thus ends an 18 month experience with an unscrupulous con man. On the plus, Craig Millar in South Africa is a stand up guy who helped out the customers that Brian Hancock screwed.

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3 hours ago, gn4478 said:

So after hiring a customs broker, I was able to get the sails from JFK airport to my home. I brought the sails to a major loft for inspection and modification of a staysail to add an antitorsion line that Brian Hancock from Great Circle Sails said he had and would install. He refused to respond by email, iMessage, text or phone to confirm he was still willing to do so.  So, in the end, I am out the cost of shipping, the customs broker and the anti torsion line.  On the plus, the sails look like they are well made with good construction technique and materials. Thus ends an 18 month experience with an unscrupulous con man. On the plus, Craig Millar in South Africa is a stand up guy who helped out the customers that Brian Hancock screwed.

So after everything is said and done, how much money did you save over going to a local loft?  And was it worth it?

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2 hours ago, Al Paca said:

So after everything is said and done, how much money did you save over going to a local loft?  And was it worth it?

I saved on the 140% Genoa 8k. After a year and a half aggravation. Didn’t have the sail for the season last year but didn’t race last year. 

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16 hours ago, gn4478 said:

 On the plus, Craig Millar in South Africa is a stand up guy.

www.cmsails.co.za

Craig Millar Sails, Durban South Africa.

I've never met him ,but he's been around the South African sailing scene for many years. He does a lot to get kids from disadvantaged communities into sailing.

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It’s good to hear that things eventually worked out (no thanks to Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails).

Overall though, what a dismal customer experience! There is no excuse for retaining a 50% deposit without delivering promised goods, or for refusing to respond to reasonable follow-up enquiries. Thanks for publishing your warning about the way you were treated by Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails.

P.S. Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails boasts on his website - still up and running, BTW - that he is a member of Certified Independent Sailmakers. When you were communicating with Craig, what did he have to say about Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails remaining a “member”?

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35 minutes ago, Svanen said:

When you were communicating with Craig, what did he have to say about Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails remaining a “member”?

 

26 minutes ago, Sail4beer said:

I’m going to guess he said very little to nothing as a businessman. 

 

From Craig's website:

"We commit to never speaking ill of our fellow Members to our Customers. If we have an opinion on the work of our fellow Members, we will raise it with them directly or with the Conduct and Ethics Committee of Certified Independent Sail Makers."

 

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“Our philosophy is to conduct business with honesty and integrity, recognizing that good business benefits all parties.”

 

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On 4/8/2021 at 11:20 AM, Svanen said:

It’s good to hear that things eventually worked out (no thanks to Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails).

Overall though, what a dismal customer experience! There is no excuse for retaining a 50% deposit without delivering promised goods, or for refusing to respond to reasonable follow-up enquiries. Thanks for publishing your warning about the way you were treated by Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails.

P.S. Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails boasts on his website - still up and running, BTW - that he is a member of Certified Independent Sailmakers. When you were communicating with Craig, what did he have to say about Brian Hancock of Great Circle Sails remaining a “member”?

Craig shared that he new Brian for a very long time. He was dismayed that Brian would not communicate about the situation.  

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On 3/8/2021 at 6:26 AM, Sail4beer said:

There’s another poster here who basically did the same thing a decade or so ago. One failure sets up a chain reaction when your a small loft/middleman for a real loft. 
 

I ordered a set of 3 sails for my Fareast28R in May from a local sailmaker who’s been soliciting me for a while( I have several boats) and said “No rush.” I didn’t hear back from the loft until October. The sails were ready in July and they forgot to call me. Simple mistake with no bad intent. The boat’s for sale in the classifieds now and the next owner can unbox the new sails with the new rig, rudder, etc I bought this past spring.

 

so was it a 2 or 4 stroke ???

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  • 2 months later...

I am having a very similar experience to others and just now finding this thread. Price seemed unbeatable and Brian seemed like a good guy in all of our initial conversations. I paid for half the cost of a sail up front. Sail is MIA several months after estimated delivery date. No response from Brian after multiple communication attempts. Not sure what to do at this point.  Dammit. I was depending on having that sail for upcoming trips and races.

 

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You get what you pay for!  Always deal with a sailmaker with a local representative and at least a repair facility.  If it is 1/2 price there is a reason, maybe they only deliver 1/2 the sails ordered and WTF is up w/ Brian, he seemed like a stand up guy.

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Very interested to hear if anyone else has had recent interactions (good or bad) or any other information on what might be going on with Great Circle Sails. Even by PM if you don't want to post it publicly. Willing to give Brian the benefit of the doubt, to a point, if he's dealing with problems in his life or business. It's been an exceptionally hard year for many. I can't imagine this thread is good for his business reputation. He should really be more communicative with clients.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sadly, my experience with Brian has been in line with Decay's gn4478's. Ordered the sail in December, paid the usual 50% down, invoice promised end-of-April delivery as we had negotiated. Had a couple of good, friendly email back and forths with him about Vendee and America's Cup, but as end of April came and went he just vanished. I was able to get one more message out of him by contacting a fellow Marblehead-based notable sailor I know and Brian claimed as a friend - I had used them as a reference. I got from Brian an email with a sob story of death and mayhem having to do with some project he is managing - I won't bore anyone with details. So, as of June 10, he says a sail has been made and is sitting in South Africa waiting for shipping... Luckily I made my down payment using PayPal, and was able to get may money back very quickly, making me think he is not responding to PayPal's attempts to reach him either.

I have resigned myself to eking out one more season out of the ol' ratty 135%, but in the darkest moments of disappointment have been composing a post to SA titled "Brian Hancrook and the Great Swindle Sails". I still text/email him on a weekly basis because, well, I'm pissed off. Oh, and his phone voicemail box is full and accepts no new messages.

Lesson learned - North/Quantum, here I come.

 

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16 hours ago, zenmasterfred said:

Oh, that changes everything, how could I possibly have doubted Great Circle?

The is some tragedy in this, seeing Brian burn people that he has been friends/friendly with for a long time. I've now spoken to two such (serious) people who are aghast and totally bewildered by his behavior - seems like there is some serious flame-out going on. Tony, Zenmaster, "testimonials"=advertising, we all know that. Due diligence and independent verification was done. Schadenfreude is such a cheap feeling...

That said, lessons learned to be sure. One man shop is, well, all about that one man. The allure is the price and only having to pay for that one man, the risks are now glaringly obvious. I got my money back, so I consider this a cheap lesson.

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I used a local sailmaker who delivered exactly what I wanted at a very good price. Tri radial one design sails. PM me if you’d like his info, I don’t want to put his name or info here and have it accidentally co-mingled with this unfortunate rubbish.  
 

Either way, good luck moving forward. I was in the same position 5 years ago and got my money back as well. 

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  • 1 month later...

We also had a crazy bad experience with Brian Hancock and Great Circle Sails of Marblehead. We paid and he didn't deliver. After months of requesting delivery, or at least communication from Brian, but receiving nothing but stalling and deception, we cut a deal with Craig in South Africa, the maker of the sails. Craig completely came through and his efforts to complete our sails and get them to us were so much appreciated. In the end, both we and Craig lost the money that Brian stole from us. I'd advise not doing business with Brian Hancock at Great Circle Sails because he will probably rip you off.

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Wow. For all the crap that floats around SA there are some good and useful threads as well. This thread is a great public service and hopefully saves somebody else getting ripped off by someone who appears to be quite the con man.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm still out my deposit with no sail. I was able to get some communication from Brian after many emails. So he does get them. He said the sail was already manufactured by the contract loft in South Africa waiting for shipment but he was not able to communicate with the loft despite making every attempt. Assuming his loft was Craig I reached out. But Craig (who seems awesome) didn't know anything about my sail order. Brian then said the sail was actually made by Jan Reuvers / Dynasails, also of South Africa. I emailed Jan and got one reply confirming I reached the right person, but then no response to follow-up emails about the sail. Now I'm not sure if the problem is with Jan, Brian, or both. It is possible that Brian's explanation is true and there's some problem with Dynasails, although if so Brian could be handling it much better. Ultimately GCS is responsible for fixing the problem and it's not my job to chase his contract manufacturer. Still, I'd be interested to know if anyone knows any scuttlebutt about Jan Reuvers / Dynasails.

I've made several generous offers to Brian including "return my deposit now, and I'll buy the sail for full price if it ever materializes in America". But he hasn't responded to anything about remedying the situation. He is once again ignoring all communication.

I even pointed Brian toward this thread and recommended he give the community some answers or try to salvage his online reputation, but he has not posted. I'm sure he's reading this, he uses this website.

I really wanted to work this out amicably, Brian seemed to be a decent local guy perhaps in a bad situation (that he wasn't fully explaining??) but I'm running out of options and I can't just walk away from that much cash.

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Most small independent sail makers are running at least a low-level ponzi scheme. Using someones down payment to buy materiel for someone else's sail who's down payment has already been spent (like for rent or paying oneself.)

It's a slippery slope and once you do that a single time, it tends to cascade into an unsustainable situation where delivery times are pushed out indefinitely and nobody is happy.

 

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In high school I worked for a construction contractor who did the same thing, always juggling angry customers, working on which ever job complained the most, running of materials etc... took him 6 week to pay me at one point. 

Then one of his (few) subcontractors told me that he actually spent all the money on his cocaine habit and it all made more sense. 

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This is all a very sad story, from every angle.

Sad for the customers who lost time and money.  Sad for the sail lofts who have gone unpaid.

But also sad for Brian Hancock, whose antics over the last 18 months seem to have destroyed a reputation and a trust network built up over decades.  Sure, his customers and suppliers need to protect themselves and warn others, and there may be criminal investigations ... but something has gone badly awry for Hancock.  Whatever led him to make so many bad calls and treat so many people so badly, the result is that decades of business are coming to a crashing end and his name is mud.  That's a tragic finale to a working life.  

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9 hours ago, Somebody Else said:

Most small independent sail makers are running at least a low-level ponzi scheme. Using someones down payment to buy materiel for someone else's sail who's down payment has already been spent (like for rent or paying oneself.)

It's a slippery slope and once you do that a single time, it tends to cascade into an unsustainable situation where delivery times are pushed out indefinitely and nobody is happy.

 

Lose a little money on every one but make it up in volume?

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On 9/3/2021 at 3:06 AM, Somebody Else said:

Most  A few small independent sail makers are running at least a low-level ponzi scheme. Using someones down payment to buy materiel for someone else's sail who's down payment has already been spent (like for rent or paying oneself.)

It's a slippery slope and once you do that a single time, it tends to cascade into an unsustainable situation where delivery times are pushed out indefinitely and nobody is happy.

 

Fixed it, most small independent sailmakers have fine business acumen and contribute a lot to local sailing community.

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  • 2 months later...

After being shafted by a boat dealer I tried to buy overseas sails from, I decided to only go with reputable local lofts that I could drive to in a day if I had to. Lucky for me, I had paid for the overseas sails with a credit card and the bank returned my money. I might suggest that anyone looking to buy over $10,000 in sails use some type of credit card which can guarantee your money refunded due to fraud. The percentages the card may charge for a couple of months is worth the security of mind. 

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What is the whole premise of these people? Give us your money so we can "pursue our mission to cultivate curiousity through adventure & exploration"????

My opinion is that they made a whole series of questionable choices (starting with his haircut), and that they walked away from their donors money because they can always use a sympathy ploy to ask for more.

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I understand the frustration but a reality check is in order...we're in the middle of a pandemic. Not all countries are holding it together economically. Shipping charges have sky-rocketed. Material costs have sky-rocketed. Staff are getting sick. Small businesses going bust from these stresses is to be expected, particularly if they're dependent on international suppliers.

The OP asked if it was covid or fraud, and everyone's jumped on fraud when a more logical answer is covid. Businesses are failing everywhere and you think a sail importer is going to cruise through covid? Hell, the guy could actually have been dealt a serving of covid himself or in his family, do any of you muppets know otherwise?

Let's just wait for a better explanation for a long-running and arguably well-regarded business going bust than "he's a fraudster".

The OPs order in October 2019 was very bad luck though.

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8 minutes ago, Ncik said:

I understand the frustration but a reality check is in order...we're in the middle of a pandemic. Not all countries are holding it together economically. Shipping charges have sky-rocketed. Material costs have sky-rocketed. Staff are getting sick. Small businesses going bust from these stresses is to be expected, particularly if they're dependent on international suppliers.

The OPs order in October 2019 was very bad luck though.

No doubt Covid put tremendous stress on lots of manufacturing and shipping. However, thats no excuse for lack of communication, the lies and the fraud of not sending a deposit to the loft. In the end I got the sails from Craig Millar and they are top notch. Used them in the Annapolis to Newport race and Spirit of Bermuda Rally. I am very happy with them and have no reservations what so ever from ordering from Craig again.

 

 

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Always deal with someone you know or someone who someone you know can vouch for.  Ordering sails from overseas and paying in full is just being a little too gullible.  Having spent years in the sailmaking business I never stiffed a customer or an employee through good and bad times.  Right and Wrong are not difficult concepts!  If someone pulled that shit on me I would mortgage my wife to buy a ticket, get on an airplane, go to the perps home/business and choke the living shit out of the crooked bastard.  Just sayin.

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1 hour ago, Ncik said:

I understand the frustration but a reality check is in order...we're in the middle of a pandemic. Not all countries are holding it together economically. Shipping charges have sky-rocketed. Material costs have sky-rocketed. Staff are getting sick. Small businesses going bust from these stresses is to be expected, particularly if they're dependent on international suppliers.

The OP asked if it was covid or fraud, and everyone's jumped on fraud when a more logical answer is covid. Businesses are failing everywhere and you think a sail importer is going to cruise through covid? Hell, the guy could actually have been dealt a serving of covid himself or in his family, do any of you muppets know otherwise?

Let's just wait for a better explanation for a long-running and arguably well-regarded business going bust than "he's a fraudster".

The OPs order in October 2019 was very bad luck though.

I think a more accurate statement would be that Covid finally killed his Ponzi scheme. 

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37 minutes ago, Monkey said:

I think a more accurate statement would be that Covid finally killed his Ponzi scheme. 

Classic Robbing Peter to pay Paul.

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2 hours ago, Ncik said:

I understand the frustration but a reality check is in order...we're in the middle of a pandemic.

Fuck that, I've ordered & received 2 sails Feb 2020 through today.

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6 minutes ago, Parma said:

Fuck that, I've ordered & received 2 sails Feb 2020 through today.

Made locally or internationally?

For sure the lack of communication is concerning.

I'm just pointing out that the pitchforks may be presumptuous. Unless someone has news to the contrary the guy could be lying in a hospital bed, with no extra help choking required.

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14 hours ago, Ncik said:

Let's just wait for a better explanation for a long-running and arguably well-regarded business going bust than "he's a fraudster".

We waited long enough for this to be anything other than fraud. I got a set of sails during Covid. I also know the sailmaker so I have a high level of trust. Brian Hancock had made his own bed and that you think that this peanut gallery is being judge and jury is “kind of” funny. We’re just reacting to a crazy story of theft and fraud by a guy in the industry. You don’t have to be the SJW for Onesails either.

And the claim that covid is the logical explanation is purely your opinion. Perhaps you can contact Brian and clear all this up for us. He will appreciate you brokering his re-emergence into the professional sailmaker’s world. 
 

As a victim of fraud myself, I doubt that Mr. Hancock will even return your email or call. If he does, get back to us and the people who are out their hard earned money and let us know his side of the story.
 

My rip off artist tried to use the money I gave him for a centerfold spread in Sailing World in 2016 instead of being an honest businessman. But, that’s just my opinion and my bank’s as well. At least I got to see boat as boat of the year in a magazine with sails up and sailing. 

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16 hours ago, Ncik said:

Made locally or internationally?

For sure the lack of communication is concerning.

I'm just pointing out that the pitchforks may be presumptuous. Unless someone has news to the contrary the guy could be lying in a hospital bed, with no extra help choking required.

He screwed multiple people by the posts on many sites. He went dark. He is a fraud.

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Is this shit still going on?

And has the Ed still not put another one of his "opinion" pieces on the FP, a kind of "bye bye, I'm off, fuck you all" farewell piece?

Come on @Editoryou could even write it yourself, same style...

PS. Don't forget to mention the Whitbread, and Skip.

PPS. To be honest, I'm afraid this somehow must be a sad story, actually.

 

Edited by Fiji Bitter
PPS
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3 minutes ago, Ncik said:
9 hours ago, Sail4beer said:

And the claim that covid is the a logical explanation is purely your opinion.

FIFY

NCIK, if wearre youre monney, woude you be so patiente and forgiveng?  S4B hasse showen patients and udderstandeng, plesae tellus howe/when you you haive done the saime.  Ime am open to annythinge you maye offere.               :)

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Just now, Snaggletooth said:

NCIK, if wearre youre monney, woude you be so patiente and forgiveng?  S4B hasse showen patients and udderstandeng, plesae tellus howe/when you you haive done the saime.  Ime am open to annythinge you maye offere.               :)

I have been defrauded thousands of dollars by an employer, years prior to covid. It was frustrating but I let the administration of the business progress and still ended up with nothing. I certainly didn't suggest "choking" my ex-boss, as was mentioned in this thread.

I'm holding off on buying anything major until the pandemic is settled down a bit, sails included, although I'm only a dinghy sailor so not a major purchase. I fully understand teh frustration, particularly if you ordered in October 2019 before the pandemic. It's a fine line between fraud and failed business, there's no manual for how to end a failing business.

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2 minutes ago, Ncik said:

I have been defrauded thousands of dollars by an employer, years prior to covid. It was frustrating but I let the administration of the business progress and still ended up with nothing. I certainly didn't suggest "choking" my ex-boss, as was mentioned in this thread.

I'm holding off on buying anything major until the pandemic is settled down a bit, sails included, although I'm only a dinghy sailor so not a major purchase. I fully understand teh frustration, particularly if you ordered in October 2019 before the pandemic. It's a fine line between fraud and failed business, there's no manual for how to end a failing business.

OK, I appreciatte youre losse and patiente approache, and Ime am siurre youre debtores do to, butte why go aftere S4B whoise reactione ist moeste normalle?

( Youre karma bildes at geometric rate.             :)   )

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On 9/2/2021 at 4:59 PM, Decay said:

Still, I'd be interested to know if anyone knows any scuttlebutt about Jan Reuvers / Dynasails.

A cross-over from another case of sails not being delivered...

https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/sailmakers-stole-our-money

 

A relevant quote from link...

"

Court Case

Here is the court case I mention in the video: Quantum Sail Design Grp. v. Jannie Reuvers Sails, Ltd. 

"

There seems to be more to this than Great Circle Sails and simple fraud.

 

(I see this was already mentioned up thread.)

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23 hours ago, zenmasterfred said:

Always deal with someone you know or someone who someone you know can vouch for.

Yes.

As near as 150 years ago one would send a Letter of Introduction ahead of conducting business. A letter from a mutually trusted person was doubleplusgood. Never mind that you could travel there as quickly as the letter could; letters and humans both crossed oceans via sailboats.

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12 minutes ago, Snaggletooth said:

why go aftere S4B whoise reactione ist moeste normalle?

I didn't go after S4B. Lots of people had the pitchforks out here, I was merely pointing out some perfectly reasonable alternatives.

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For those of you saying "buy from a local reputable loft" Brian Hancock WAS a local reputable loft. Great Circle Sails is run out of his house in Marblehead, local to lots of sailors (this isn't doxing, it's public info). There were plenty of good reviews and testimonials.

Anyway, as I said in the other thread, in one of his very last communications before disappearing Brian told me that Jan Reuvers (not Craig Millar) actually manufactured my sail. He said the sail was finished but Jan was unreachable. I emailed Jan and received one reply confirming it was the right person, then nothing when I mentioned Brian and the missing sail. So the problem may well be with Jan Reuvers. Brian might not be quite as full of shit as some are saying.

However, I ended up filing a small claims suit against Great Circle Sails. It would be one thing if the sails were delayed for a long time by covid (or anything else explainable) and Brian stayed in touch about it, but he disappeared with my deposit and won't communicate. It's not my job to chase his contract manufacturer.

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On 11/8/2021 at 6:23 PM, Ncik said:

Made locally or internationally?

My understanding is internationally, finished locally. I've heard rumours that all sails come from Sri Lanka.

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14 hours ago, Decay said:

For those of you saying "buy from a local reputable loft" Brian Hancock WAS a local reputable loft. Great Circle Sails is run out of his house in Marblehead, local to lots of sailors (this isn't doxing, it's public info). There were plenty of good reviews and testimonials.

Anyway, as I said in the other thread, in one of his very last communications before disappearing Brian told me that Jan Reuvers (not Craig Millar) actually manufactured my sail. He said the sail was finished but Jan was unreachable. I emailed Jan and received one reply confirming it was the right person, then nothing when I mentioned Brian and the missing sail. So the problem may well be with Jan Reuvers. Brian might not be quite as full of shit as some are saying.

However, I ended up filing a small claims suit against Great Circle Sails. It would be one thing if the sails were delayed for a long time by covid (or anything else explainable) and Brian stayed in touch about it, but he disappeared with my deposit and won't communicate. It's not my job to chase his contract manufacturer.

It is a tangled web indeed.  I believe that after Jan Reuvers and Quantum severed ties, Jan continued operations in the same physical loft. Quantum sued him and Ullman for using their methods. Ullman was dropped from the suit. Quantum initially lost the first decision but a later decision against Jan was for millions.  The same contract loft was being used by Ullman sails.  Craig Millar at one time worked for Quantum and then was the International President of Ullman sails.  Jan and Craig had some falling out over an issue of which I am not privy to. Ullman maintained a relationship with Jan. Craig went on his own.  Sounds like Brian was using multiple contract lofts.  Sorry that Jan would not honor the deal. Craig did.  

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So, in this same vain, if I am dealing with Doyle Sails in Marblehead/Salem, who am I really dealing with?  I had always assumed the loft was owned and run by Doyle Sails.  I know some of the sails are still coming from Asia, and I am sure there are some made onsite, or at least modified when the loft in Asia screws something up or need to be tweaked.  What are the details with Doyle Sails?

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40 minutes ago, MauiPunter said:

So, in this same vain, if I am dealing with Doyle Sails in Marblehead/Salem, who am I really dealing with?  I had always assumed the loft was owned and run by Doyle Sails.  I know some of the sails are still coming from Asia, and I am sure there are some made onsite, or at least modified when the loft in Asia screws something up or need to be tweaked.  What are the details with Doyle Sails?

I think you need to ask! I do know that many lofts are owned by the local sailmaker and not the National Brand

 

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I know and sail occasionally with my local sailmakers and pay their outrageous prices ( like double plus Far East prices) but I have never had an unresolved delivery/quality issue.

However if I was stumping up for string sails on a big boat, the price temptation might be too much to resist especially when you know that a lot of so called "local sails" are simply ordered via the Sailmaker  from contract lofts in third world countries and either finished locally (or not)

That said business is based on trust, and when you research reviews and find its all good, when its a real business selling common products and not some get rich quick or ridiculously cheap item then why wouldnt you buy from them?

The sailmaker business model seems to be;

Nice friendly local front person (often good sailor schmoozer who can work the room) and offshore loft plus contract local actual sail makers to do repairs and fitting.

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1 hour ago, Caecilian said:

However if I was stumping up for string sails on a big boat, the price temptation might be too much to resist especially when you know that a lot of so called "local sails" are simply ordered via the Sailmaker  from contract lofts in third world countries and either finished locally (or not)

This is exactly what I did on my previous boat when I wanted to get some new sails.  I had an excellent experience with Loong Sails.  Their local rep is in CT (Christopher Cole). Everything happened as he described and the sails worked beautifully.  I do know if something went wrong it would have been painful and probably nearly impossible to get post sale support.  But, my boat was 40 years old and just didnt want to spend 2x the dosh on the new canvas from big name brands.   On my current boat I would probably just save up and get a nice set of Doyles, or Norths or Quantum with the local reps in New England when the time comes.

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2 hours ago, MauiPunter said:

just didnt want to spend 2x the dosh on the new canvas from big name brands

This is part of the equation. At the end of the day, sailing/boating is a niche sport/past-time with very few participants. The industry that supports our sport is a cottage industry; there's very few customers with very few jobs, there's no production lines, the materials are expensive, the technical skills and knowledge are unique.  Employers are competing with the rest of society for employees. The low pay is sustained usually because of employees who are passionate about their job.

Cheap, fast, good - you only get to choose two.

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