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Update on Daniel Gentile


Dan Walters
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Most of the writing here is accusatory as if Daniel is some kind of con artist but this only revolves around one single complainant, that being Mr. Walters. To date, not one other customer has come forward to complain about Daniel Gentile and how he takes care of his business.

You are giving a warning about doing business with Daniel Gentile but the warning should also apply to you as you are a most difficult costumer if not completely impossible to deal with.

 

Mr. Gentile was contracted for work over two years ago, and as he had no waiting list, I was to have my items within 45 days. At one point Daniel even told me one knife was progressing well, but the hot bluing did not meet his expectations, so he was going to have it done again. :rolleyes: After many months of waiting, and after many futile attempts to contact Daniel, I brought the issue up on this forum.

 

Daniel did explain his situation and apologized on the forum. He acknowledged on the forum he should have maintained contact, etc., etc., and all seemed on track again... He finished up the damascus khukuri in April 2008, and promised to have the remaining items done and sent to me in two months. This is the last I heard from him, as he once again went into a deliberate mode of ignoring any attempt I made to contact him. Members of this forum have attempted to assist me to no avail.

 

How am I being a difficult customer? :blink: Members can read about my business dealings with Daniel Gentile on these fora. I certainly don't want to write off $2000 U.S., and as a customer who has been been promised my knives again in April 2008, and completely ignored since then, I feel that an explanation (and the knives!) is in order...

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Dee, You have very limited information regarding this matter

as harsh as you put it, yes, you are indeed right.

but, i dont remember claiming at anytime that i was in anyones confidence or that i knew every intimate detail of what was going on.

:)

 

but if you go back and re-read my post hopefully you'll see that im not accusing anyone of anything ..

im asking people to take it easy and to STOP accusations directed at people

 

i personally still believe that the only two people that need be involved in all of this is the maker and the makee

and i would hope that everyone is able to come to a good conclusion through communication and understanding.

(and yes, i know that im about the most naive people under the sun)

 

anyhow .. as i said .. im sure Mr Gentile is a fine fellow .. he certainly seemed like it whenever i read his posts etc.

and i say again - im positive there is a simple explanation behind it all ..

theres usually a simple explanation behind most things.

heck, if there is something i can do to help, id be more than happy to. someone just pm me and ill get right on it.

 

my request was for people to cool their bloods ..

i just didnt want people to be jumping to 'con artist' measures when one wasnt needed.

 

but as you said yourself

Certainly there is reason for you to complain that your business has not been completed.

so whether or not people can be put to bad light or whatever .. i really dont care, past my points of:

 

1~ it is polite for a maker to keep in (private) contact in order to discuss their ongoing work in order to avoid miscommunication and hurt feelings.

 

2~ everyone here should be on the same side and keep accusations and hot blood out of it. ie - play nice and stay peachy.

 

sorry if that makes me wrong in your eyes, but i dont mind, cuz i still like you, Mr Bondurant. ^_^

Edited by Dee
deeDWF4.jpg

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Mr. Walters, You can play the nice guy here all you wish, I know a different story. For whats it worth I would be more than happy to conduct business with Daniel Gentile but I would never take an order from you whether you payed in advance or not.

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Alright, I remember Don Fogg having this post about not wanting to be daddy... But I think people are going a little over board here.... -IF- you know a different story, maybe you should share with us, or at least share with Mr. Walters. He's been waiting two years for 2grand U.S. Worth of stuff to come in, with hardly any contact. He's tried, phoning, emailing and anything else he can think of, and then posted on here, he was suggested to bump this thread every now and then in the hopes that Mr. Gentile would respond to him, and at least -give- him an update or say "Hey, I'm not dead, and I haven't forgotten about you."

 

My .02 cents.

 

Brent

Alba Ghu Bra

 

Brent LaCroix

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Dee, No worries here, I was not trying to be harsh in my words to you, sorry if it came across that way.

 

Back in the real world, there is a economic crises, millions of people have lost their jobs, untold numbers of people have their homes in foreclosure, the people of Thailand have been out in the streets trying to overthrow the government again, and the known world is in total chaos. Me? I'm living dangerously as usual, one misstep from the fangs of a viper, yet I hammer my way through life, rarely missing a strike.

 

be careful, b.

Edited by Bryan Bondurant
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All my contacts with Mr. Gentile, whether by mail, e-mail, telephone or PM have been civil if not friendly. Daniel Gentile has responded to my posts on these fora, and has admitted to problems with his work, etc. When he "reappeared" on the fora last April, he did say that he was wrong in not keeping me abreast of the situation. He told me to expect the items in a couple of months... Now almost a year later, I've been ignored again, and I assure you that the several e-mails or PM's I've sent to Mr. Gentile have all been well mannered.

 

I'd certainly appreciate being privy to any "different story" you have; do feel free to post any e-mails, letter, etc., to support your stance. Don Fogg is well aware of my attempts to contact Mr. Gentile, and has endeavored to assist me several times. He's also surprised that I'm still waiting for the merchandise and/or a response.

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I don't know what to do with this thread. I left it up initially as an object lesson for all the new knifemakers and I honestly thought that it had been resolved last Spring. That it is continuing is a disappointment and a concern. I do not believe that Daniel intends to do anything other than the honorable thing, so I must assume that his circumstances are not good.

 

I was approached by a group of collectors that also had grievances with another maker asking if they could post their complaints in light of this thread. I thought it over and decided that it was not in the best interest of this forum to open it up in that manner.

 

Doing business, especially sight unseen, with an artisian requires trust. That trust has been earned by the honesty of makers who have been delivering on their promises for years. The maker is solely dependent on his health and well being to deliver on his promises. Things go wrong and can be expected to go wrong at the worst possible time.

 

The cardinal rule when I got into the business was never to take money ahead and you won't get in trouble. Every time I have violated that rule, it has been a mistake and place additional burdens on me that I have regretted. To be honest, I still have obligations that I need to fulfill. It is important to maintain contact with your customers, most folks are very understanding and will work out accomodations if problems do arise.

 

That said the question for me this morning is, Is there a benefit to the forum community by maintaining this thread? I would appreciate your input.

Don Fogg

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Don I feel that it distracts from what the forum is about and feel that you should not allow it.

Even if Dan is a mod here it has nothing to do with the forum topics.

If folks have disputes it should be settled amongst themselves .

Thanks for hosting us!

Bob

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Yes.

 

Being that knives are offered for sale on Bladesmith’s Forum, it is only fitting that some sort of feedback mechanism is permitted. Posters would preferably keep the tone more urbane than other knife related fora…

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I can see both sides to this. If I was a buyer/collector and I had shared Dan's experience, I too would be frustrated (even angry), scroungin' for answers everywhere I could and would feel a moral obligation to tell other potential buyers that "somethin' aint' right".

 

On the flip side, I have been behind before myself and know that "stuff happens". As a part-timer, I have to squeeze my knife work in whenever I can and sometimes obligations at home take necessary time.

 

Weather or not this thread should stay up: well, I'm of the school that sometimes you don't have to like it, you just have to do it. Life isn't all perfect quenches and flawless dove tail fittings. In my opinion, Dan has been pretty civil about all of this in his attempt to get answers and share his experience. He hasn't been defamatory (is that a word?) towards Daniel, he's just expressed his experience, concern, frustration and request for intel.

 

Since you asked for opinions Don, I'll go ahead and say that if it were my forum, I'd allow it as long as it stays civil.

 

JV

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Well i think we should give dan some credit, given that he is a mod he could have deleted this post at his leisure i do believe. So if he has indeed been on line in the last few weeks and saw the post i will give him props for that much.

 

Further i have personally met Dan and can attest for his character. This leads me to believe that there is more to this issue on one side or the other than is being aired here.

 

As to what to do with this thread. I am not for censorship ever, but this is going down hill fast. Perhaps you could close the thread leaving it up until the issue is resolved with further dragging out this seeming repetitive, endless, and unproductive debate any further.

 

Thanks for hosting a great sight Don!

 

~~DJ

Edited by DJPratt
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They say that "money is the root of all evil". It seems to me that communication or the lack thereof is either a close second or a toss up. The issue in this dispute is the lack of communication between the buyer and the maker.

 

I think we all can agree that custom work takes the time it takes. The itch here is that the buyer has been left in the dark as to when he can scratch it, (at least that is what we are left with from his point of view).

 

Should this thread be part of the Bladesmith's Forum? That's a complicated issue. At first blush I must say I don't like reading negative threads, however all I need to do is avert my eyes when I see the angry happy-face and concentrate on other posts. But here I am. I see Jeremy's point that there is a section where makers can offer up their knives for sale so comments on poor business practices relating to those sales should be permitted.

 

On the other hand, in America we believe that one is innocent until proven guilty. We also believe that when one is charged with misconduct one should be provided with proper representation. Having been an investigator for 30 years it nags on me that I haven't been able to hear from the maker. I know that there are two sides to every story and it is human nature to offer information that shades the truth in your best interest. That's not to say that the buyer is fibbing, it's just what we all do.

 

On the other, other hand, if you follow the train of thought in the aforementioned statement, all a miscreant maker would have to do to avoid prosecution on this forum is to remain silent.

 

I'm confused and conflicted. In the end this thread leaves me feeling poorly, and that is not why I spend time here.

 

Unless you want to be the provider of a blacklist of bladesmith's and knifemakers for the world wide web then I say, take this thread down.

"My sword and my shield are at your command"

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I know I am not a regular poster but I do learn a lot from this site. I am also a member of numerous forums and one thing the majority of them have in common is a feedback section to let potential customers know what type of experience they should expect when dealing with dealers. This is just done out of respect for the forum members since the mods obviously don't want anyone to get ripped off. That being said, it also offers a way for people to publicly thank those that have gone above and beyond in their efforts to satisfy their customers. To not allow feedback is IMHO a mistake, since that offers the perfect breeding ground for unsavory characters to bilk people at their leisure. Feedback simply offers a means of checks and balances. If I was a seller on here, I would certainly want people to know that my products were top quality and that potential customers could expect top notch service.

 

At some point during the two years this has been going on, it seems that an email could be sent at the very least. $2000 is a lot of money to miss and respect dictates that the customer be kept informed. I know that I have had many bad experiences in my life but none of them has ever consumed every waking moment as a time span such as this. The only excuse would be my own personal death. I'm sure that at some point in two years I could take a minute or two and fire off an email. I digress. I'm sure that the parties in question are both honorable people and I'm sure that there is an explanation for the continued absence of products and money, at least in the eyes of those involved.

 

As far as whether to leave the post up or not, I don't think it really matters. Two years is a very long time and sooner or later someone will have to cave in. Updating a thread that people are obviously actively connected to isn't a bad thing regardless of how the conversations degenerate. Mods can delete posts as well as threads and it is well within the scope of reason to delete posts that are counter-productive while leaving the thread intact for those that are following the progression of events. I'm sure that there are more than the original two that are emotionally involved by this point and would like to see this come to some sort of resolution. I myself have no stake in the proceedings here as I am not affiliated with either party, but I would like to know that if the time comes when I want to purchase something from someone, I will be dealing with someone that is well respected, always honors requests, and has earned no negative feedback. Everyone who sells online will eventually get negative feedback from someone that can't be pleased but the only way to know if it was earned or not is to allow grievances to be posted. I think every online outlet for dealers should be required to provide feedback as that's the best way to know if your hard earned trust (and money) is safe.

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I believe the reasons to keep this thread up in the first place have value. It's unfortunate to require reconsideration, but the learning experience may truly help a new maker.

 

Craig

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I make this post with much trepidation.

 

 

We come here to not only share our experiences and ideas and knowledge of bladesmithing, in the end we share the path we have chosen in life and all the common and not so common we encounter on the way. Yes, it is a bladesmithing forum, but if we remove the rest of life from the discourse, the result would be a lifeless monologue on tempering, steel, and hammers.

 

This is not an easy conversation to have. We feel like we are FOR or AGAINST, while we are all actually somewhere on the the same continuum, left, right or somewhere in the middle. From what he hs shared, I feel that even Mr. Walters is conflicted. Sometimes what we stand for is not fully supported by our actions (or inactions) and we must speak for ourselves. In some cases, the accusations are so distasteful, to respond gives them a credibility the do not deserve. I do not feel this is the case.

 

We all have endured loss in family, vocation, or home and know how that can set us back. I for one lost 6 close family members (including my father and my sister-in-law) in 24 months, yeah, a loss about every 4 months. I know how one can be set back and overwhelmed. Did I get lost in my loss? Of course, and I still am. I have to say, I am thankful for those who have held my hands in those times as well as those who booted my in the butt as well. Sometimes I needed it.

 

Are we to judge Mr. Gentile from what Mr. Walters is sharing? Unfortunately, Mr. Gentile has yet to turn this into a true conversation. Does he owe it to us? Mr. Gentile has in the past offered much input and I feel for people to give Mr. Gentile the credit he probably deserves, this topic should be continued. It is how someone not intimately associated with either party can make an informed (such as a one way discourse can) decision on the voracity of someone's position in the forums. Mr. Walters has a legitimate reason for coming here to try to communicate with Mr. Gentile. With 1500 + posts, Mr. Gentile was (is?) and integral part of this forum's experience. If the tenor of the postings is civil, I believe the thread is appropriate.

 

And of course Don, your decision will be supported whatever you chose to do.

 

 

jm

Blade

The blade, elegant
Slicing through the sweet, warm breeze
with a precise hit.


Sam Wands (10 years old)





Gold for the merchant, silver for the maid;
Copper for the craftsman, cunning at their trade.
Good! Laughed the baron, sitting in his hall;
But steel---cold steel---shall be master of them all!

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i have been in a similar situation before.

im sure many of us have.

sometimes i was the one who felt wronged at the delay in my goods .. sometimes i was the one who was doing the delaying.

i know that i am sometimes slow in my work and that can lead to frustration among my customers when they are hoping to see results in short order.

sometimes life gets in the way ... sometimes events happen around the world ... or more often than not, that high polish just isnt mirrored enough :)

 

i have always believed that communication should be held between the maker and the person who has asked for a piece to be made.

this is because i truly would hope that through discussion, some conclusion can be be made that benefits both parties.

i think that most people around here are more than reasonable and are quite happy to accept changes and problems that might arise.

 

having said that ... sometimes this cant or doesnt happen .. i can come to understand that.

 

sometimes the lines of communication break down and sometimes people are left with bad feelings over the situation.

when this happens, im not sure how things can really be dealt with best.

 

i believe that this thread is helpful so long as it is kept along the lines of a discussion ..

if the thread is kept to where we are asking how things can be resolved .. and how is the best way to deal with things in this kind of situation.. then yes, i believe it can be quite helpful indeed.

i mean .. after seeing this thread pop up again .. i started wondering when was the last time i touched base with my customers who are waiting on their orders to be filled.

 

but if this thread starts to become an avenue to belittle or insult, then i think that the little bit of benefit that it does give to the forum would be totally lost.

 

indeed this is a bladesmithing forum.

and bladesmithing is more than just hammers, tongs and fire.

sometimes its about customer relations, or bankruptcy, or horrible injuries that end careers ..

these are things that we Like to talk about .. but they still have some place in bladesmithing as a whole.

and as much as i dont particularly like to hear about them ... i personally feel that they have something to say.

deeDWF4.jpg

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I have taken no sides with this. But every thread dealing with this sort of subject i have seen on multiple forums has always ended with bashing and bad feelings amonst forum members that have no dealings with the parties involved. That is why this forum is unique there is a common bond among members to want to learn with out the b.s.and that is what this forum is about as soon as you allow this in the forum it will fester like a bad sore. There will be no resolution to this thread here once you open the forum to a complaint board it will just keep growing.

Just my own thoughts regards to all.

 

Bob

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A small business owner will live or die by their business practices and philosophies. I don't care to see anyone's dirty laundry being aired on any forum. It's between the two parties only. A bad business model will become self evident sooner rather then later.

Everything I need to know I learned from the people trapped in my basement.

 

 

I'm out of my mind but feel free to leave a message.

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difficult decision to be sure, complaints should not be censored, but they should be aired once if necessary and not repeated. Let others know your situation and opinion but then deal with the problem in private from then on. Otherwise one has to wonder at the motives.

 

I think this thread has gone further than it needs to

"When our eyes see our hands doing the work of our hearts, the circle of Creation is completed inside us, the doors of our souls fly open and love steps forth to heal everything in sight."  Michael Bridge

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Threads like this are always hard to read for me, if it was up to me I think people in Dan's situation should be allowed to air what is going on but I think the topic should be locked so that the flamers can not make this more than it really is and cause trouble.

Mike Turner

 

 

http://www.turnerknives.com

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Don, I know that I am new here but here is my suggestion in regards to topics such as this. Is it possible to partially lock the topic so that only the parties involved can post in it?

 

If so that would elimnate the parties who are not directly involved to wind up "taking sides" and causing hurt feelings. I've been a member of several other boards over the years that have had "flame wars" go on and it completly ruins the atmosphere of the forum. It always seems to spill out into other topics and before you know it it grows like a cancer corrupting the entire place.

 

I understand that Dan and Daniel have outstanding business together. The lines of communication have dissolved. However other forumites are begining to get sucked into the situation and things seem to be getting rather heated. I would hate to see this forum go up in smoke the way I have seen happen on other forums. There has been an ongoing "fued" between several members of this other forum for about 2 years now and I can't even stomach it to go on that board anymore. I only go on there to talk with some of my friends that I go camping with every summer, but other then that I avoid the place.

 

As always we will respectfully accept what ever you decide to do Don. Your jugement in the past has been nothing but fair. This is a tough decision for you as the site Admin, but I trust that you will act in the manner that is best for the site as a whole. This site is a great environment for makers both new and old.

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Thank you all for the thoughtful posts. I am going to lock the thread at this time. I would be happy to hear from Dan and Daniel to resolve this problem, but I don't think there is any further benefit to the general community by continuing with it. I appreciate the help.

 

Don

Don Fogg

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