What started off as a nightmare turned into a really rewarding experience, thanks to Frank Daringer and all the employees I came in contact with at Midshore Electronics.
My boat was struck by lighting in the spring of this year while in the Inner Harbor and after some unpleasant dealings and foot dragging, the boat was patched enough to limp its way to Cambridge where I was met with friendly and helpful folks.
From the moment I passed through the draw bridge, docked my boat, to sitting down to grab a bite a to eat (a few doors down, great restaurant) where we began the discussion of what the project would entail. We brainstormed on my wish list and after lunch I knew I had to deal with insurance and they would inspect my boat and identify the extent of damage.
Of course insurance and the related paperwork is no fun and Frank provided assistance with this additional headache, we discussed the damage that occurred, he also reviewed with me the schedule on what to expect, discussed all the various product options available and I knew in the end I was looking at a quoted 4 week stay, ugh.
However, the 4 weeks included free slippage, WIFI, and get this, Frank went above and beyond the call of fantastic service and loaned me a company vehicle to run errands which allowed me to restock my boat. That was a pleasant surprise and gesture.
About 2 weeks into the project they called me to tell me they found a bad part on my charging system and of course this concerned me that my estimate was going to be shot and that this project would be like most projects of poor estimates of time and labor costs, but I hung in there with their constant reassurances that we are doing the right thing, and it is their job to do it right the first time.
A week later my phone rings again, and with dread I answered it, and to my surprise I find out that my boat is ready and it is time to take it out for training me and testing the boat's new system.
We took the boat out 2 days in a row, the first for about 3 hours and the next day for about 2. I was trained, challenged, and then later QUIZZED on the operation of my new Garmin system. It was fun, informative and I enjoyed the fact they were committed to having me as a part of the testing process, I learned interesting bits of info and I was excited about my new equipment and relieved that the overall condition of my boat was sound before I took off north on the ICW. And thankfully I passed the hands on test, whew!
Final tally of the work, I was originally quoted 140 hours, they came in at 131.5, they not only beat their billing estimate; it only took 3 weeks instead of the quoted 4 to complete the work, fix the unplanned bad part they found during the course of their work and finally to train me!
This was a major refit project! Now ask yourself how often does that happen, beat the estimate on time and labor?! Not very often, if ever.
Quite simply, this experience from start to finish was managed by a friendly and professional group of people, who understands that quality service involves anticipating a customer's need, meeting the customer's expectations, and delivering the product and services as promised.
There are so many complex electronics available to the consumer now a days, and I'm glad that my expectations of a system that I could handle and understand was met. I was not oversold or pressured into buying anything I wasn't comfortable with, or exceeded my needs. The Garmin system is so easy to use and I am glad I settled with their recommendation.
I will be back later this year to get the generator and solar panels we discussed during my stay in Cambridge. I highly recommend Midshore electronics for their friendly and helpful attitude, their attention to detail, the quality of work, awesome training interactions, fantastic products and a beautiful and convenient location in Cambridge.
Two words: excellent experience!
Thanks again ya'll, I'll be back!