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Archive 2013 · My Nikon repair story
  
 
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · My Nikon repair story


Short version:

It took three attempts and 13 weeks for Nikon to make the flash on my D800E work properly.

Long version:

On June 16, 2012 I bought a new D800E.

In late June I discovered it did not reliably trigger remote flashes (CLS). The details aren't important here, except that mine was not the same as a problem discussed around the internet at the time.

I delayed service so I could take the D800 on vacation. At the end of my trip I started getting "Err" in the top LCD when activating the aperture (DoF preview or shooting).

On September 13 I mailed the camera from Massachusetts to Nikon's New York address.

On September 18 I got an email saying the camera was in their system. The web site showed warranty repair, no charge. A letter with the same information arrived a couple days later.

I checked status almost every day from then on. On days I didn't check, nothing changed.

On September 29 the status changed to re-estimate. Nikon claimed water damage and it would be a ~$200 repair instead of free. I was suspicious of the diagnosis, but $200 wasn't worth a fight.

More specifically, the status was re-estimate September 19. By my understanding that means Nikon decided to charge me on September 19 but didn't update their records until September 29.

I never received an email or a letter informing me of the change. I had to check for myself.

I approved the estimate via the web page the same day.

On October 10 status was unchanged so I called to check. Nikon had no record of my approval. I gave payment information by phone.

Three failures on their part so far: late update of online status, no email or letter notification of change, and their computers lost my payment info.

On October 12 my camera was back in shop.

On October 25 (+/- 1 day) I called for a status update. I was told my camera would be shipped the following Tuesday, October 30.

On October 29 a hurricane hit Long Island (site of Nikon's East Coast repair facility).

On November 2 I called again. It was their "first full day" with power restored and they had a backlog.

On November 5 the camera arrived via next day air, 7 1/2 weeks after I mailed it. Excusing a few days for the hurricane and discounting time in transit, they had my camera for 6 weeks.

CLS still did not work.

On November 6 I bought a 5D Mark III.

I called Nikon service. The person on the phone checked the record and agreed I had reported a broken flash but the repair work did not include the flash.

On November 29 I mailed the camera back to Nikon. The work list was the flash problem and replace lost vertical grip cover.

On December 21 I received the camera. The flash still didn't work. The grip cover was still missing.

On December 24 I took the camera to the store where I bought it. I demonstrated the flash problem and explained that Nikon had twice failed to repair it. The store sent the camera back to Nikon and said they would escalate if needed.

On January 10, 2013 the store called me to say my camera was back.

On January 11 I picked it up. CLS finally worked.

Final score: 3 repair attempts, 13 weeks in service or in transit.



Jan 13, 2013 at 03:26 AM
runamuck
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · My Nikon repair story


Unfortunately, this is becoming the norm for Nikon.


Jan 13, 2013 at 03:35 AM
EB-1
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · My Nikon repair story


That sounds about right these days.

EBH



Jan 13, 2013 at 03:41 AM
mfletch
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · My Nikon repair story


I think I would try to get Nikon service through that shop if needed again. With 2 ways shipping and 2 holidays in that time period, Nikon must have only had the camera for 6-8 business days on this last trip.

Edited on Jan 13, 2013 at 03:59 AM · View previous versions



Jan 13, 2013 at 03:58 AM
BigIronCruiser
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · My Nikon repair story


I had a 70-200 repaired at Nikon's east coast facility before the hurricane. 10 days door to door, and returned in like-new condition. Can't complain about that kind of service.


Jan 13, 2013 at 03:58 AM
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · My Nikon repair story


mfletch wrote:
I think I would try to get Nikon service through that shop if needed again. With 2 ways shipping and 2 holidays in that time period, Nikon must have only had the camera for 6-8 business days on this last trip.


I will. I should have taken it back there the first time. Now I've tried three options for repair and know which works best.

1. Local camera repair place couldn't realign a lens properly after I dropped it. It was one of those obscure misalignments where out of focus areas in one of the corners look awful and the rest looks OK.

2. Nikon direct, see above. (But they did take care of the lens from #1 OK; it's not like every repair is a horror story.)

3. Nikon via camera store is actually easier than packing up the camera and shipping it, and they are a big customer of Nikon where I am a tiny customer. Plus I could use the exercise walking the 2 1/2 miles to the store.



Jan 13, 2013 at 04:07 AM
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · My Nikon repair story


BigIronCruiser wrote:
I had a 70-200 repaired at Nikon's east coast facility before the hurricane. 10 days door to door, and returned in like-new condition. Can't complain about that kind of service.


Like I said in my previous message, I also had one satisfactory repair experience.

Probably if the problem fits into a standard category they can do it quickly and well. My flash problem was not a standard problem. I explained it in the initial service request, but Nikon's writeup condensed my report to "flash doesn't work." I can imagine some technician triggered the flash, saw light come out, and concluded the flash worked after all. If their standard test checklist included using commander mode they would have detected a problem.



Jan 13, 2013 at 04:12 AM
paulvienneau
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · My Nikon repair story


When I bought my D800 back in the Summer there was a bad backfocus problem. My store, Atlantic Photo Supply, in Halifax, called Nikon and sent it to them for the warranty repair.
Camera was back in a week or so, perfect.



Jan 13, 2013 at 12:56 PM
Chris Dees
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · My Nikon repair story


runamuck wrote:
Unfortunately, this is becoming the norm for Nikon.


Perhaps for Nikon USA, I have no problems with Nikon in Holland. Used their service a couple of times without any problems.



Jan 13, 2013 at 04:54 PM
mshi
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · My Nikon repair story


Becoming a NPS memeber is the answer.


Jan 13, 2013 at 05:46 PM
 

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RCicala
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · My Nikon repair story


mshi wrote:
Becoming a NPS memeber is the answer.


If it is, I'm not sure what the question was Been plenty of NPS members upset lately, too. Or as someone in another forum put it, the Professional in NPS describes the user, not the service.

But as several people have pointed out, its a Nikon USA problem. The rest of the universe seems to have good service.

On a slightly related note, I notice Nikon USA has finally put a few common user replaceable parts in the parts store in the last week. Hopefully that's a sign that they're starting to get the idea that they need to address these issues.



Jan 13, 2013 at 05:55 PM
M Lucca
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · My Nikon repair story


Not sure of it is Nikon USA as this is a north american centric forum. Nonetheless lots of bad service lately.


Jan 14, 2013 at 07:30 AM
zippy_monster
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · My Nikon repair story


RCicala wrote:
If it is, I'm not sure what the question was Been plenty of NPS members upset lately, too. Or as someone in another forum put it, the Professional in NPS describes the user, not the service.

But as several people have pointed out, its a Nikon USA problem. The rest of the universe seems to have good service.

On a slightly related note, I notice Nikon USA has finally put a few common user replaceable parts in the parts store in the last week. Hopefully that's a sign that they're starting to get the idea that they need to
...Show more

Man... I just sent my D600 to Nikon Los Angeles (oil spots on "CCD" sensor), so I got a chance to fool around with the D200. Not even two years old and the rubber grip is coming loose and interfering with the front command dial again. I sure hope I can get replacement rubber from Nikon in the future.

Anyhow.

Roger, when are you going to disassemble a Nikon lens for us and compare it to the Canon you took apart?



Jan 14, 2013 at 07:51 AM
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · My Nikon repair story


I spoke (wrote) too soon. My camera is much better, but not working correctly. Flash commander mode works about 80% of the time instead of 10%. I just dropped it off at the camera store for its fourth trip to Nikon.

All of my Nikon cameras are now in for service. D700 (3 years old) needs a new grip, V1 has a cracked eye sensor, D800E can't control remote flashes.



Jan 14, 2013 at 09:55 PM
Sambru
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · My Nikon repair story


I have had excellent service with Nikon Canada. To Make a long story short I had sent in my D3s to have the AF-ON button(top one) replaced it was not working. Some how en route to Nikon it was damaged to the extend that it was a total loss(water damage) Nikon didn't know when that occurred. To their credit Nikon replaced my D3s with a refurbished one with low mileage. Sure enough a week later my refurbished D3s arrives - however it's soaking wet. Yes soaking wet the cardboard box it was shipped in was so wet you could see the ribs. the "Gold Nikon box" and all it's contents were soaking wet. Here is the best part within 5 minutes of Nikon finding out about this disaster Nikon contacted me and a brand new D4 was on it's way -they were going after the courier for damages. A week later I had a brand new D4.

I can honestly say since I have been shooting Nikon(1978 FE) I have been treated very good by Nikon. Never have I ever had any negative experiences, although the Nikon 601 was testing my patients. When digital came along I bought a D80, fom that D80 I have owned and own just about every semi pro(D200,300,700, 7000,800,D3s & D4 ) Nikon has come out with since 2007



Jan 15, 2013 at 02:05 AM
Vox Sciurorum
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · My Nikon repair story


How can I arrange for my box to get soaked in transit?


Jan 15, 2013 at 02:12 AM
RCicala
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · My Nikon repair story


zippy_monster wrote:
Roger, when are you going to disassemble a Nikon lens for us and compare it to the Canon you took apart?


Actually did it today. I'm should have the blog post up tomorrow mid day. I did the Nikon 24-70, Canon 24-70 and Tamron 24-70 f/2.8s.




Jan 15, 2013 at 02:18 AM
Sambru
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · My Nikon repair story


zippy_monster wrote:
Man... I just sent my D600 to Nikon Los Angeles (oil spots on "CCD" sensor), so I got a chance to fool around with the D200. Not even two years old and the rubber grip is coming loose and interfering with the front command dial again. I sure hope I can get replacement rubber from Nikon in the future.

Anyhow.

Roger, when are you going to disassemble a Nikon lens for us and compare it to the Canon you took apart?

I found orginal Nikon rubber grips on Ebay for my D200 & 700 both bodies I had to repace the grips.



Jan 15, 2013 at 03:09 AM
FlyingGiraffes
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · My Nikon repair story


Vox Sciurorum wrote:
How can I arrange for my box to get soaked in transit?


Add me to the "soak this box during transit" list.



Jan 16, 2013 at 10:06 AM
Dustin Gent
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · My Nikon repair story


I am hearing too many of these horror stories. I have been super lucky where my only camera that needed repair was an F5, but I have a D700 and hope it doesn't need any repairs. I am hoping a local place is Nikon authorized...

Hope you get this settled soon. I would think there would be some sort of petition going around on the internet?



Jan 16, 2013 at 06:46 PM
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