DSS (Deep Sea Supply)---Warning

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ams511

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Imagine what it must feel like to be moving an entire business 1000 miles on his own. He’s probably getting less than 6 hours sleep a night and probably answering 200 phone calls a day, when half of them are from people who don’t know he’s temporarily out of business and who are moaning to fix their wing for free that is out of warrant, on top of that, he probably had a really stressful day...

For many years Tobin has posted that if the wing gets damaged it needs to be returned for a bladder replacement. He does not recommend patching it nor does he sell the bladders so it can be DIY. He also manufactures a product (Torus) which is designed not to have a user replaceable bladder. Again, if you puncture the bladder you need to send it back to DSS for repairs. The seams need to be cut to access the bladder and the wing needs to be resewn. So given these facts Tobin does have a moral (and maybe a legal) obligation to fix the damaged wing. The fact that he is moving or stressed out is not a factor.

If Tobin cared about his customers then he would have arranged for one of his dealers to handle repairs during the move. He also would have mentioned that he would closing so that if anyone wants anything they should order now.

The OP did not ask for the wing to be fixed for free, he just wanted it fixed.
 

ams511

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Well, hello and good day too you sir! Sorry I was saying misinformation about those wings and thanks for correcting me. Oh wait I didn't say anything about those wings. So I don't know why you are directing your anger at me? Do you talk to people like that in person? if so that must be fun.

To answer your question, I would say until Tobin re-opens his business you have to assume the possibility of him never going back into business and you have to plan accordingly. If he does go out of business then he has no legal/moral/ethical obligation to fix something that was 8 months out of warranty. Its just one of those risks you take when doing business with anyone.

I beg to differ. On many occasions Tobin has mentioned if the bladder is damaged to send it back to DSS for a repair. This does create a moral if not a legal obligation to fix the wing. The OP was not asking for the wing to be fixed for free but for it to be fixed. I don't believe Tobin ever qualified his comments by saying I will fix the wing unless I am moving or in a bad mood.

How would you feel if this happened to you and you needed to purchase a new wing or else miss diving season?
 

cool_hardware52

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Don't even consider buying from this guy. He is absolutely overwhelmed with the move to Nevada, unable to provide customer service to his past customers and ruder than ever. I called DSS to ask about taking care of a leak in my wing that occurred on the very first dive (after buying it about 20 months ago) down in COZ. I understand his warrantee is only 1 year, but I was hoping to at least see if he would back up his gear (that apparently is the best in the WORLD) or buy another wing. After being berated because he has equipment in 3 different states and is overwhelmed and it's my fault, I should have let him know what I think of him, his business and his customer service, but I politely listened, thanked him and said goodbye.

I HIGHLY suggest that you go elsewhere for your gear, if you ever are able to buy from him again. I've been around the world many times and have dealt with all kinds of wonderful and not so wonderful people, but he is at the top of the ego/jerk list. I've been nothing but nice and respectful to him but he doesn't have a clue how to treat people, especially those who have given him their business. I'm done with him and have to swallow the cost of replacing the bad wing (the best one IN The WORLD) with another one, hopefully from a company with great customer service.

If you chose to buy from DSS in the future, do so at your own risk. Some people just don't deserve our time or our money.

I highly suggest you look elsewhere for dive gear too. I have zero doubt that I'm unworthy of your business.

I've been absolutely honest about our current resources, yet some still think if they call or email me when my equipment and supplies are 1) Disconnected, 2) Packed, 3) in Transit 4) Who knows where. that I will be able to provide a ship to address and date certain when they can have their out of warranty goods repaired and returned.

Sorry, but my crystal ball just doesn't have the range or the resolution to do that. No doubt yours would in a similar situation.....

I could list the many challenges I have encountered in moving, but I doubt you care. Suffice to say they profound, numerous, frequently change, and presently require 120% of my available bandwidth to manage. Some foreseeable, others much less so.

The fastest way for me to again be in a position to offers service and sales is to focus on my new building, and focus on relocating my equipment and supplies. When that is accomplished I will have some finite idea of what we can offer.

I could of course offer the typical happy talk that one often sees firms spew in these circumstances, but I'd rather be honest then over promise and under deliver.

As I have stated many times, I designed and built dive gear because I enjoyed it, nobody in the dive business is getting rich. Fortunately other investments have made it possible for me to engage in scuba and to live quite comfortably without ever selling another thing.

I should thank your for your original post. If I choose to leave DSS closed I'll simply refer folks to your original post to explain why life is too short to waste it dealing with unrealistic, vindictive, small minded people.

I would council caution, the lets see which scuba operator or boat operator or gear manufacturer's head we can put on a stick today crowd may soon find they have drastically fewer choices. Look around, shops are closing, boats are in drydock, long time gear makers are throwing in the towel. The scuba business is at best hard work, long hours and low margins.

The scuba business is for many (most?) involved an advocation, remove the pleasure and why bother?

Tobin
 

cool_hardware52

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I beg to differ. On many occasions Tobin has mentioned if the bladder is damaged to send it back to DSS for a repair. This does create a moral if not a legal obligation to fix the wing. The OP was not asking for the wing to be fixed for free but for it to be fixed. I don't believe Tobin ever qualified his comments by saying I will fix the wing unless I am moving or in a bad mood.

How would you feel if this happened to you and you needed to purchase a new wing or else miss diving season?

"Moral obligation" Please. Do be careful climbing off your high horse. Are you suggesting that if somebody *EVER* offers goods for sale they have incurred a limitless obligation to offer parts and repairs on a near instant basis?

Can you direct me to the ethics depart for ZipDrives? I have a couple I purchased and they need repair.

The scuba business is awash in stories, many have appeared here, of people returning goods for repair and either never seeing them again or the repair takes 3-4-5-6-7-8-9+ months.

I'm moving. It's proved to be more difficult and require more time than I anticipated.

If we hadn't tried to move we would have absolutely closed. If I succeed in moving (remains to be seen) I might be able to again offer service. Perhaps you can detail for me the proper "moral' choice between these two options.......

Please do be specific.......

Tobin
 

ams511

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While there are, of course, competitors with quality gear, to suggest that DSS gear is not top tier or is merely comparable to "most other gear on the market" is simply inaccurate. Is it in every case the very best? Of course not. No one's is. But is it top tier, yes.

This is what I base my opinion on, please correct me if I am wrong: The fittings on the wing are no different than the fittings on any other wing except for the dump. The hoses and inflator are generic items included on any other wing. Wings such Mares, Apeks, Halcyon, and others use a metal inflator. Other wings (Halycon and UTD) use a real correlated hose that stretches not one of those cheap rigid hoses. The shell of the wing is nothing special. It is no stronger or thicker than any of my other wings using a separate bladder. The bladder DSS uses depends on the age of the wing. The older opaque bladders are 15 mil while the newer black bladders are 30 mil. Most other manufacturers are switching over to using a coated ballistic material presumably because it is stronger. The wing design departs from what is becoming industry standard. Most other single-tank wings on the market use an oval (donut) design and have a user accessible bladder. The LCD wing is a horseshoe design while the Torus wing is sewn shut. This requires the user to return the wing to DSS for repair. Other wings you can just unzip the shell and patch the bladder. The cam straps are plastic not metal.

The backplate uses lower quality 304 stainless instead of higher quality 316 stainless. The harness uses standard d-ring like you can get from DGX. If you want to see a quality harness then check out Apeks. The plate is not finished to a mirror finish like other plates such a Halcyon or Hollis.

The plate also uses "gimmicks", solutions to imaginary problems. For example the inserts for the webbing really serve no purpose. First, webbing is cheap and last years. Second, you can purchase tubular webbing for a few dollars to do the same thing. Second the wobble stoppers or compression fittings are only needed to take the stress off the plastic buckles. Also I think DSS used to sell something that does something similar that slips onto the straps. Why make a plastic plate? Dive Rite uses cutouts to make a stainless plate roughly the same weight as an aluminum one and sells it for much less than a DSS Kydex plate. The Kydex plate cannot use the weight plates or the glide adaptor.

Some DSS advantages:
DSS does include a "DIR" knife with the harness, but according to ISE the serrations should go down to the handle which they don't. This is a minor flaw though.The ability to remove the wing without removing the tank bands is a nice feature but the same can be accomplished using a STA or Scubapro style straps. Albeit with more effort. Personally I don't understand why other manufacturers don't copy this feature.

The DSS setup costs $460 which is significantly (50%) more expensive than either the DGX or VDH which look to be either of similar quality. Also DGX and VDH give excellent service. Full disclosure, I don't own either of those. I do own or have owned wings from Halcyon, Hollis, Apeks, Mares, UTD, Zeagle, DRIS, HOG as well as DSS. So I do feel my opinion is informed.

This is what I base my opinion on. I don't believe anything mentioned is inaccurate. As the Chairman mentions DSS has a fanatical bunch of loyal customers, but if you objectively compare DSS against other products on the market they are just average. Plus you are dealing with someone that is "crusty" to say the least. There is better gear out there and nicer people to buy it from.
 

scrane

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Great, all you MacGyvers, repair the OP's wing for him.
That's the point. The wing was designed to be unrepairable. No wonder the manufacturer wanted nothing to do with it.
 

cool_hardware52

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That's the point. The wing was designed to be unrepairable. No wonder the manufacturer wanted nothing to do with it.

Humm, that's going to be a big surprise to the ~100 customers who had their Torus wings repaired. Looks like you have no idea what you are talking about, but this is of course ScubaBoard........

Tobin
 

cool_hardware52

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This is what I base my opinion on, please correct me if I am wrong: The fittings on the wing are no different than the fittings on any other wing except for the dump. The hoses and inflator are generic items included on any other wing. Wings such Mares, Apeks, Halcyon, and others use a metal inflator. Other wings (Halycon and UTD) use a real correlated hose that stretches not one of those cheap rigid hoses. The shell of the wing is nothing special. It is no stronger or thicker than any of my other wings using a separate bladder. The bladder DSS uses depends on the age of the wing. The older opaque bladders are 15 mil while the newer black bladders are 30 mil. Most other manufacturers are switching over to using a coated ballistic material presumably because it is stronger. The wing design departs from what is becoming industry standard. Most other single-tank wings on the market use an oval (donut) design and have a user accessible bladder. The LCD wing is a horseshoe design while the Torus wing is sewn shut. This requires the user to return the wing to DSS for repair. Other wings you can just unzip the shell and patch the bladder. The cam straps are plastic not metal.

The backplate uses lower quality 304 stainless instead of higher quality 316 stainless. The harness uses standard d-ring like you can get from DGX. If you want to see a quality harness then check out Apeks. The plate is not finished to a mirror finish like other plates such a Halcyon or Hollis.

The plate also uses "gimmicks", solutions to imaginary problems. For example the inserts for the webbing really serve no purpose. First, webbing is cheap and last years. Second, you can purchase tubular webbing for a few dollars to do the same thing. Second the wobble stoppers or compression fittings are only needed to take the stress off the plastic buckles. Also I think DSS used to sell something that does something similar that slips onto the straps. Why make a plastic plate? Dive Rite uses cutouts to make a stainless plate roughly the same weight as an aluminum one and sells it for much less than a DSS Kydex plate. The Kydex plate cannot use the weight plates or the glide adaptor.

Some DSS advantages:
DSS does include a "DIR" knife with the harness, but according to ISE the serrations should go down to the handle which they don't. This is a minor flaw though.The ability to remove the wing without removing the tank bands is a nice feature but the same can be accomplished using a STA or Scubapro style straps. Albeit with more effort. Personally I don't understand why other manufacturers don't copy this feature.

The DSS setup costs $460 which is significantly (50%) more expensive than either the DGX or VDH which look to be either of similar quality. Also DGX and VDH give excellent service. Full disclosure, I don't own either of those. I do own or have owned wings from Halcyon, Hollis, Apeks, Mares, UTD, Zeagle, DRIS, HOG as well as DSS. So I do feel my opinion is informed.

This is what I base my opinion on. I don't believe anything mentioned is inaccurate. As the Chairman mentions DSS has a fanatical bunch of loyal customers, but if you objectively compare DSS against other products on the market they are just average. Plus you are dealing with someone that is "crusty" to say the least. There is better gear out there and nicer people to buy it from.

Most of what you posted is opinion and not fact. It reveals that you never quite understood our system, and it's benefits. Having said that I simply cannot devote much time to correcting your nonsense on a forum that has long ago ceased to be very meaningful. There are some great folks here, but a handful seem to relish smearing manufacturers, and the net effect has been to chase off most manufacturers. Bravo, well done!

I have a good friend in the business who is waaaay more internet savy than I. Analytics etc. I called him one day when I saw his goods and his company being smeared on ScubaBoard by one of the usual suspects. He laughed and said it was of no concern to him given the small and rapidly shrinking membership and views the threads here get.

Tiny fish in an ever shrinking bowl, who still think the world gives a damn....

Carry on.

Tobin
 

NAM001

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LOL, KWS didn’t you have a brand new wing from this guy fail in my class?
yepper and i dont use their wings any more. I found what was blowing them and it is a handling issue, by me, wing pinched between 2 kits. the reason i dont use them any more is that there is no zipper to replace the bladder,,,,, have to send it in to repair. I use oxycheq or similar wings that have the built in STA tabs and the hose over the left shoulder and not center behind the head.
 

NAM001

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To point one, go back and read statement/posts/threads from Tobin here and on many other threads. He has years of history of acting like an a-hole and being exceptionally demeaning to people that don't agree with him.

To the second point: Tobin has shown himself over the years to be hot-headed. Disagreeing with him over the phone or telling him what you think of him has a 50% chance at least of not being pleasant.

So, do some research on Tobin, then feel free to comment. His gear is awesome. He is not (and it's a well-known laughable joke in the industry)

In Tobins defense, yes he is curt. yes he is the boss. that means he answers the calls him self instead of hiring someone to do that for him. He knows his stuff and he will stop any and evryone in their tracks when he sences them going on a tangent regarding equipment selection. he has done it too many times to not know what he is doing. that is why he asked every buyer to get a set list of information needed to speed line the process. Unless it is a gross demeaning attitude on the sellers end,,,, i give them the benefit of the doubt and give them what they want and wait for him to ask if you have any questions. There is nothing worse than asking a poffessional for their time and then proceed to tell them how you know better.
 
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