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Old 02-19-2004, 01:42 PM   #21
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Rose Lodge , Oregon
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Speaking of local hardware stores, I once had a guy refuse to sell me a chainsaw because he ran his oh-so-experienced eye over my small frame & decided I couldn't handle one & he didn't want to get sued when i cut my leg off.

Damn asshole. So I went to Home Depot where they don't dispense judgments with their tools and bought myself a chainsaw. Sheesh. That was years ago. Still walking around on both legs. Stumble once in awhile, but that ain't the chainsaw's fault.

That hardware guy woulda had himself a good ol' heart attack if he'd seen me getting off a plane in Costa Rica last winter with my worm drive, headed for a timber-framing project....
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Old 02-19-2004, 02:07 PM   #22
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I sometimes feel like I have an office at HD. But I often go to Ace Hardware, a superstore version near my house that is well organized, easy to navigate and find stuff.
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Old 02-19-2004, 03:46 PM   #23
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The thing that sets me off about both is when I bring in an old part to have as a "go by" for finding a replacement and the "helpful employee with the happy face button on" say "What's that for?" Then when I explain it's a simple household part from a 1964 vintage Airstream...they give me the "Oooohhhh, we don't have anything like that here, you'll have to get that from a dealer, hun..." routine.

I usually browse around for a bit, find what I'm looking for, then promptly march on over to the "helpful employee with the happy face button on" and show him they DO have what I'm looking for. A couple of times, I've been so offended by the way I have been treated, I just hand the part over to the "helpful employee with the happy face button on" and walk out only to go somewhere else to purchase it. Silly, I know...but at least I made my point with that one person...

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Old 02-19-2004, 03:53 PM   #24
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tsk...tsk....

shame on you,,,,dont you know that you are making geo. bush-cheny and haliburton richer by driving somewhere else?.........
tsk...tsk....
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Old 02-19-2004, 05:18 PM   #25
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Homeowners H......LL

Wow, a pet peeve of mine brought up by someone else!

Lowes and HD are really two peas in a pod. They have a unique view of what sells in my area. This provides a range of goods that astonishes me with the depth of dust on many of the items in stock. Reminds me of the old inventory adages: FIFO first in-first out, LIFO, last in-first out and Loews own FISH First in-still here! I want to purchase MDO and 5/8" white melamine. Neither Lowes or HD stocks any and neither store knew what MDO was. Once I explained (educated) what it was the response was particle board was over there. Oh Boy!

I find they carry many lines of products without really carrying all of one type or style. Plumbing is a VERY sore spot. They seem to always not carry one fitting necessary to complete a task or are out of some item (1/2" PEX tubing, 10') and never seem to be able to get in more. My favorite respose, received to a question as to when something was going to be back in stock, "We anr't gettin any more 'cuse we can't keep it in stock!" Brilliant!

Their depth of product is very poor, again in plumbing. I tend to go to both stores to complete any project, which truely annoys me. Unfortunatly, there are no small hardware stores left that will order in a timely fashion anything desired. Gone too, is the conversation and guidance said stores provided. Progress is a four letter word as far as big box marketing is concerned.

And Shari, you almost got it right. The perfect solution is to bring the item to the store manager or person in charge that day and let him (her) know they have lost more than the business of today. Remind them you know enough people that if asked about what store to shop you will not recommend them unless the service improves. That usually gets their attention. Works at Best Buy as well, another of my favorite stores to hate.
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Old 02-19-2004, 06:31 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally posted by Janet's Husband


I don't care for either one but I am stuck with them.


I'm hoping we don't end up stuck with them in our small town. Hundreds of folks here are boycotting the new Home Despot fearing it will price local suppliers and services out of business. I've joined their ranks, and no longer shop at any HD. We've already got great lumber yards, hardware stores, appliance stores, flooring installers, etc. I don't like to imagine a scenario where the livelihoods of the little guys and all of those they do business with are threatened. It isn't fair competition; it's predatory. And for what? A few years of low wage jobs and cheap sandpaper? No thanks!
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Old 02-19-2004, 07:42 PM   #27
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Wink Markdoane's Variety

Don,

"Today:
12000 sq ft grocery store, closing in March
8000 sq ft organic foods co-op and home products store
3000 sq ft burger joint
2000 sq ft hardware store"

You lament but you have perhaps the most interesting dichotomy in the Twin Cites. That Burger joint is a cardiac arrest center. There can't be a more greasier place around. Just down the way is your organic coop with all the "good" foods. Just alternate days and you can eat average.
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Old 02-19-2004, 07:53 PM   #28
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The Good Ol' Days

I mentioned earlier that when I built my home 20 years ago that I shopped the commercial lumber yards. What does that mean? Well, my local community of Excelsior, population about 3,000 people had two local lumber yards across the street from each other and a very good hardware store. Today they are gone along with the dry goods store where you could buy American made clothes and the good ol' fashion independent donut making and custom cake bakery. Times are a changin' fast.

If you are ahead of the baby boomer bulge you can probably remember when fast food didn't exist at least in the national chain variety.

There's so much more....
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Old 02-19-2004, 09:29 PM   #29
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I started out as a HD person and have warmed up to Lowes over time. The two stores are 1/4 mile apart so I usually go to HD first. It is closer, and if they do not have what I am looking for I go to Lowes. You have to come to reality and realize that these stores are for mass marketing and due to their size the customer sometimes gets left out. Both of these stores are great for home projects, however if I am working on some other project our local Ace hardware is hard to beat. Their motto is " If Sunshine doesn't have it you don't need it" which sometimes leads me back to hd/Lowes to find it. Local hardware; local service a thing of the present.
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Old 02-19-2004, 09:55 PM   #30
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Shop smart

I noticed that Lowes seems to have a better price but it isn't always what it seems.
Looking for a concrete pad Lowes $2.19 ... HD $2.29 (don't remember the exact price but this is close).

Fine print Lowes = 16X16 block HD = 18X18 block making HD a lot less expensive.
IMO
Lowes has bigger isles and is generally cleaner and more expensive. But a lot depends on the store manager.

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Old 02-19-2004, 10:17 PM   #31
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my best jim neighbor....

Surprise....Surprise!.......
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The only true nobility is found through giving good food to your friends- Anton Careme

beauty is in the eye of the beerholder-cosmo fishhawk

if something is too good to be true, its usually gone before i get there-mister boffo
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Old 02-20-2004, 01:23 AM   #32
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Hi,

I live in the dead centre of British Columbia (eight hour drive to anywhere), and last summer they finally built a Home Depot (and WalMart, Cdn Tire) a block from my house--I thought I had died and gone to heaven.

When I decided to install underground sprinklers, I went to HD and loaded up the cart with all the PVC fittings, etc., then went to the next aisle for the Schedule 40 pipe...hmmm. Lots of PEX, copper, ABS, even black iron pipe...but no PVC. I checked with the young fellow who showed me the PEX, and I politely said that I would check at the 'help' desk. They said, "hmmm" and got on the intercom (I thought to call the manager) and they called the young fellow I had just talked to--this was too funny. I suggested that they ask their manager to order PVC pipe, but seven months later the stock hasn't changed. Now I go back to the slightly more expensive Home Hardware (mom and pop) franchise two blocks further away.

I do like the fact that the HD lumber is stored indoors and that you can pick your own, whereas my local lumberyard is outdoor storage and they always 'hover' while I insist on picking. I guess HD is good for price competition, but I wouldn't want them to be the only game in town.

Gary H.
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Prince George, BC (the snow is finally melting!!!)
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Old 02-20-2004, 08:55 AM   #33
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depends

I use both of them, but only for very common and simple stuff, like fertilizer, small electrical items, an occasional small tool or drill bit.
Also, it is difficult to say which is worse ( we really can't use the term "better")
because it depends sooooo much on the individual store. Eg the Home Depot at my house is useless, it's in a primarily residential neighborhood, upscale mood.
The Home Depot near my office, where the majority of real estate is commercial, works much better for me. Full of contractors, dirty, but a much better selection. They are 25 miles apart. I ordered blinds for my former office from them a few years back, which was a ridiculous experience, and they were not cheap.
I don't think generalizing works well in comparing the two chain stores, though.
I purchased an electric lawn mower and a water heater ( home) from Lowe's.
Both had problems, both times customer service was a nightmare.
I ended up online, explaining my experiences, and now they sent me a new electric lawnmower ( 18month later, mind you),and are replacing the water heater for a different model with better capacity for free.
Had I gone to my local plumbing shop, I had gotten a better price, and a much better quality water heater for my $695.00 I spent at Lowe's, installation included. Never mind the lawnmover, I hired a gardener for the lawnwork since then anyways.
Our powder room remodel revealed that a local high end plumbing fixture house had a better price and more colors on the exact same pedestal sink and faucet than Lowe's.
I am not excited about either of them, but they are both convenient for the quick stuff. I have come to believe that everything over a few hundred dollars, however, is worth shopping for in the smaller specialty places. Like lighting, plumbing, appliances etc.
I have found no equal to my local RV parts house, and InlandRV when it comes to Airstream parts, though.
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