Tempus drums?

TDM

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Sonorholic,

Thanks for replying to my question about your order(s). I'm glad to hear everything went relatively smoothly and that the few, small hiccups (regardless of fault) were addressed in a professional way.
 

TDM

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bconrad,

Thanks for sharing your experience with multiple, Tempus kits and, specifically, with the one you ordered direct. I realize your comments were provided for balanced perspective and indeed I've seen and played Tempus kits that are built and finished well. Quality control is not Tempus Drums' strong point though and combine this with the varying levels of customer service (from responsive to none), and things can get dicey for customers. What your feedback does, perhaps inadvertently, is support issues reported in this thread: the finish flaws you, I, and others have described suggest manufacturing issues and a lack of adequate quality checking; customer service, in the presence of significant problems, is inconsistent (some customers get replacement kits while others don't); and the finishing issues aren't as isolated as Tempus suggests in his posts on other sites. The posts I've seen along with my own experience causes me to believe Tempus would be well served to hire a fiberglass/gelcoat expert to help debug their finishing process. Perhaps the problems are in the gelcoating (with how the release agent is applied or in how the gelcoat is mixed or applied). Maybe the moulds need maintenance or replacement. There may well be other factors. Whatever the case, something is out of alignment consistently enough that these issues keep coming up. Thanks again for your post.
 

TDM

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TomN,

Over the years, I've seen many positive reviews of Tempus drums on the old DCI Forum and here at DFO. And on this thread, some of us with positive Tempus experiences have posted about it. However, not a single poster has denied that some of you have suffered with some problem experiences or tried to "defend" Paul in these instances. Yet there's an implication in this thread from a variety of posters that there are few, if any, Tempus owners who had good experiences with their drums. They're really just keeping quiet about there bad experiences and "defending" Paul out of some feeling of loyalty. That's the main problem I have with this thread.
I agree there are biases floating in this thread and I'll happily admit my own: I had an EXTREMELY BAD experience with my Tempus order. Regarding the notion "there are few, if any, Tempus owners who had good experiences with their drums", I'm responsible for putting this forward and I'll clarify in two ways. First, I'll put this out a second time... my bias is colouring my vision - no question about it. Second, it is my observation, based on my own experiences with multiple kits and experiences happy and unhappy customers have shared, that Tempus drums do not have the level of manufacturing refinement one usually finds in similar, high-end kits from more established manufacturers. I think certain customers (and to some degree this speaks for me) would rather play a kit that sounds phenomenal than one that looks great but doesn’t quite "do it". In my case, I'll be honest in saying that at the Tempus price range, I want it all: great sound, near perfect build quality and finishing, reliable and easily accessible customer service, and a product that is refined and well integrated (not just shells with heads, but, rather, an entire kit where the synergy of shells, finishing, hardware, and other factors are carefully designed and function together to create a greater whole). There's no question this is available from a number of manufacturers in the Tempus price class and above, and, in some instances, it is available below the Tempus price range. Note, I'm talking about new kits here, not used. Given what I now know about Tempus Drums' capabilities and products, I am the totally wrong kind of customer for this company.
 

bconrad

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bconrad,

Whatever the case, something is out of alignment consistently enough that these issues keep coming up. Thanks again for your post.
Agreed. It's doubtful I'd buy direct from Paul again (never say never, though), not just because of these issues but also because of the new versus used price of Tempus Drums. Which is too bad, because the one time I met Paul, I found him to be an extremely nice guy. I've subsequently seen how he's handled some of these issues, and not, and it leaves a bad taste in my mouth despite how he's treated me personally.

That said, does anyone know how these shells are made, or Blaemires for that matter? It seems to me that somebody could step into the f/g drum market, as there's a wide-open market niche here. Perhaps that's where we, or somebody, should focus some effort from here....
 

SteveB

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SteveB,

I shared my experiences and views regarding Tempus Drums near the beginning of this thread. When it seemed appropriate, I responded to others and added more feedback, but, as you've gently and rightly pointed out, I'm now just repeating myself. Thus, for courtesy, I'm going to respond to a few people and then allow others to be heard. If the thread continues at greater length and develops in a direction where my input would be of value, I may comment again at that point.

Thank you for your compliment on my writing and for your constructive feedback. You asked how I know what Paul's turnaround with kits is. I based my numbers on having been to Paul's workshop and observing the production capacity, conversations with Paul, knowledge of Paul's commitments outside Tempus (he has a day job, family, etc.), and experience (my own and other customers') regarding turnaround times for kits. I realize nobody asked me to comment for the group, but, in the presence of negative feedback, I keep reading responses from Paul (on Drumsmith, Facebook, and other sites) about how most Tempus customers are happy and very few orders are problematic. The increasing posts from unhappy customers suggest otherwise so I decided, after reading Sonorholic's comments, to attempt putting numbers to what I've observed. The result actually surprised me. Possibly my conclusions are way off, but the numbers suggest the problems are significant and well worth investigating.

Paul didn't have a great record last year. He allowed the problems with my order to continue unresolved (refusing my request for a refund or a replacement kit, and providing minimal repairs that contained the same defects as the original work). To my surprise, several, well known, long-time Tempus supporters received kits and were so unhappy with the service and quality that they posted complaints on Paul's home turf (i.e. Drumsmith). One customer was so frustrated with having been given questionable status reports and eventually receiving a kit that wasn't what they ordered (the finish was entirely incorrect) that they requested a full refund. This brought Paul's "no refund" policy into the spotlight. Rather than provide the refund, Paul held to his policy and eventually brokered a deal for another customer to buy the kit from the first. Meanwhile, the original customer was stuck and it's my understanding that they still haven't received their full refund (the second customer short paid or the exchange rate caused a shortage... point being, had Paul provided a proper refund these wouldn't exist). These kinds of dealings didn't help Paul's reputation. You ship the wrong thing, you refund. Simple. Actually, it's not that simple because had Paul not delivered incredibly late and given dubious status reports, the customer may well have accepted a replacement kit. Given the circumstances though, it's understandable why the customer lost faith and requested a return/refund. This transaction strongly reflects feelings I had during my own transaction with Tempus. At a certain point, after enough delivery dates had been missed and the status reports were no longer believable, and after receiving a number of drums with notable manufacturing flaws, I lost faith in Paul's honesty and in his ability to deliver acceptable goods.

Based on my own experience and comparing this with others who purchased in previous years, I deduce Paul's manufacturing problems have been going on for quite some time. Having shipped Sonorlite a seriously defective set of shells (every shell cracks and fissures in its finish, and the seams are ragged with bulging, excess material), Paul didn't refund Sonorlite's money. This issue has been outstanding for three or four years now. Sonorlite's order has direct correlation to my own: my order contains the same finish flaws and Paul refused to refund. bconrad mentioned that his first kit from Paul contained finish flaws similar to those Sonorlite and I have shown, and that Paul made a replacement kit to resolve this. Okay. It's good that Paul did this, but it also shows a repeating history and underlines that Paul is aware of the issues and has not addressed them. Given that Paul knows of these problems, one would think he'd check his shells carefully before shipping them, but this seems not to be the case. Also, I'm at a loss as to why Paul attempted to blame me for the problems in my kit and has not yet rebuilt me a new one. Paul knows he himself is responsible for the issues.

I've said it before and I'll repeat it here: Paul is his own worst enemy and he deserves the negative feedback he's getting. It's not that customers haven't let him know about the problems and haven't given plenty of opportunity for Paul to solve the issues and specific problems with orders. Paul, knowingly and of his own choice, allows these issues to continue.

Alright. I'll make a few, brief, courteous replies to others and hand the stage over. Again Steve, thanks for your constructive feedback.
No problem at all..that's a pretty rare acceptance. I'm not sure I could do the same in return. :smile:

Anyway, My striped down point is very seldom is a far left or right stance the right one. If anything is to be gained by this the opposite approach might work better.

I'll do my part:

Paul, if what these guys are accusing you of is remotely true you might want to make it right. Why would you allow this to happen.

Good luck guys!
 

9Lb Tongue

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If Paul was going to make things right, he should have done it long ago. Too much time has passed. He either feels so guilty that he won't do it, OR he just doesn't care enough and is saying eff it. What's done is done. I still have my minions and can still make a buck doing this.

The real question is, does he have the stones to come here and face the music? 16 pages and not a peep? Seems highly unlikely.

In the grand scheme of things, will this thread bury him and his biz? probably not, but I sure as hell bet it puts a big dent in it.

I think this question has been posed, but I'm not going to go back 16 pages and see. What is the deal with the flaws? Why can it not be corrected. The sketchy finishes, the bad seams and the crooked lugs seem to be a common beef among dissatisfied customers.

if I were tempus, I'd make every effort, and spend every dollar to rectify these flaws. he's sitting on a gold mine, yet from an outsiders perspective it looks as if he would rather keep it as is and go on as if all were good.

Could it be that hard, or cost that much to change things.?

Inquiring minds want to know... :blackeye:
 

TomN

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TomN,

Over the years, I've seen many positive reviews of Tempus drums on the old DCI Forum and here at DFO. And on this thread, some of us with positive Tempus experiences have posted about it. However, not a single poster has denied that some of you have suffered with some problem experiences or tried to "defend" Paul in these instances. Yet there's an implication in this thread from a variety of posters that there are few, if any, Tempus owners who had good experiences with their drums. They're really just keeping quiet about there bad experiences and "defending" Paul out of some feeling of loyalty. That's the main problem I have with this thread.
I agree there are biases floating in this thread and I'll happily admit my own: I had an EXTREMELY BAD experience with my Tempus order. Regarding the notion "there are few, if any, Tempus owners who had good experiences with their drums", I'm responsible for putting this forward and I'll clarify in two ways. First, I'll put this out a second time... my bias is colouring my vision - no question about it. Second, it is my observation, based on my own experiences with multiple kits and experiences happy and unhappy customers have shared, that Tempus drums do not have the level of manufacturing refinement one usually finds in similar, high-end kits from more established manufacturers. I think certain customers (and to some degree this speaks for me) would rather play a kit that sounds phenomenal than one that looks great but doesn’t quite "do it". In my case, I'll be honest in saying that at the Tempus price range, I want it all: great sound, near perfect build quality and finishing, reliable and easily accessible customer service, and a product that is refined and well integrated (not just shells with heads, but, rather, an entire kit where the synergy of shells, finishing, hardware, and other factors are carefully designed and function together to create a greater whole). There's no question this is available from a number of manufacturers in the Tempus price class and above, and, in some instances, it is available below the Tempus price range. Note, I'm talking about new kits here, not used. Given what I now know about Tempus Drums' capabilities and products, I am the totally wrong kind of customer for this company.
I think that everyone has accepted your account of your Tempus experience without question. It would be nice if you extended that same courtesy to those of us who have had good experiences with Tempus.
 

TDM

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bconrad,

That said, does anyone know how these shells are made, or Blaemires for that matter? It seems to me that somebody could step into the f/g drum market, as there's a wide-open market niche here. Perhaps that's where we, or somebody, should focus some effort from here...
This thought has crossed my mind enough that I've sourced materials and started figuring out how to jury-rig a mould for prototyping.
 

TDM

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SteveB,

Despite that I announced my intent to enter silent observer mode, it seems polite to reply so I will. You pondered why Paul allows situations like mine to occur. As best I understand, he doesn't appreciate the issues or isn't concerned enough about details to investigate. Hence, there's a huge difference in perception. For example, Paul dismisses his finishing errors with statements like "the nature of the materials and processes results in certain artifacts; regrettably, my finishes are not as good as wood drums". There is, in fact, no basis for either statement. I've seen first-class gelcoat work that is just as good as some of the best wood finishes. I can say with almost certainty Paul feels he delivered an acceptable product and dealt fairly and ethically with me. Obviously, I don't feel the same and the finishing flaws and other manufacturing errors in my kit, and Paul's approach to handling these issues are the reason. It's actually very easy for Paul to solve this whole mess: deliver a replacement kit to spec, with a reasonably flaw-free finish, with hardware drilled and screwed on straight, and with bass drum hoops that fit and work properly. Problem solved. Thanks again for your grace, feedback, and support.
 

TDM

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TomN,

I think that everyone has accepted your account of your Tempus experience without question. It would be nice if you extended that same courtesy to those of us who have had good experiences with Tempus.
Totally agree with your sentiments here. Thank you for your courtesy and I'll extend the same. I'm glad to hear you had a good experience with Tempus overall. :)
 

bconrad

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bconrad,

That said, does anyone know how these shells are made, or Blaemires for that matter? It seems to me that somebody could step into the f/g drum market, as there's a wide-open market niche here. Perhaps that's where we, or somebody, should focus some effort from here...
This thought has crossed my mind enough that I've sourced materials and started figuring out how to jury-rig a mould for prototyping.
please keep us updated.
 

TDM

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bconrad,

Please keep us updated.
Will do. This is likely a project I'll wait until summer to get into seriously. I want some warm weather, bright daylight, and more free time than I have at the moment for the adventure.
 

Noonan G

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bconrad,

That said, does anyone know how these shells are made, or Blaemires for that matter? It seems to me that somebody could step into the f/g drum market, as there's a wide-open market niche here. Perhaps that's where we, or somebody, should focus some effort from here...
This thought has crossed my mind enough that I've sourced materials and started figuring out how to jury-rig a mould for prototyping.
:) Here`s a link to the builders section you may have missed from last year..

There are a small number other companys, such as Ming, using F/Glass, C/Fibre, as a shell material with excellent results..

This is not an `add`, but a heads up to let you know that there are alternatives...:)

http://www.drumforum.org/index.php?/topic/36306-some-pics-for-you-glass-fibre-junkies/page__p__400601__fromsearch__1#entry400601
 
W

wayne

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Hans;You must have also been the kind of kid that spit at people from your dads moving car :twisted:
 

blueasajewel

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SteveB,

Despite that I announced my intent to enter silent observer mode, it seems polite to reply so I will. You pondered why Paul allows situations like mine to occur. As best I understand, he doesn't appreciate the issues or isn't concerned enough about details to investigate. Hence, there's a huge difference in perception. For example, Paul dismisses his finishing errors with statements like "the nature of the materials and processes results in certain artifacts; regrettably, my finishes are not as good as wood drums". There is, in fact, no basis for either statement. I've seen first-class gelcoat work that is just as good as some of the best wood finishes. I can say with almost certainty Paul feels he delivered an acceptable product and dealt fairly and ethically with me. Obviously, I don't feel the same and the finishing flaws and other manufacturing errors in my kit, and Paul's approach to handling these issues are the reason. It's actually very easy for Paul to solve this whole mess: deliver a replacement kit to spec, with a reasonably flaw-free finish, with hardware drilled and screwed on straight, and with bass drum hoops that fit and work properly. Problem solved. Thanks again for your grace, feedback, and support.

Interesting thread - I came on it when I searched for "Milestone"... I purchased a Milestone kit in 1982 and was thrilled with it. The only regret I had was not purchasing a second floor tom at the time. Milestone obviously went belly up, but then in 2001 (I think), I found out about Tempus. I contacted them and started exchanging emails with Paul. He agreed to do me what I considered a good favour. He would build me a 14 x 14 FT and install my spare Milestone badge on it.


When I received the drum, unfortunately there were finish issues with it - specifically on the seam - which was massive - My original Milestones had flawless seams. When I contacted Paul about it I received the same feedback quoted above - he did say to send it back and he would see what he could do about it.

I did send it back and it was returned apparently fixed. I could see little if any improvement. Again, when I raised the issue the response was, "well how does it sound?" - Sounds great! Looks terrible...

Anyway, I still have it - it still sounds great and it still looks like sh*t. I have contacted a local fibreglass shop and am taking the drum to them to see if the seam can be ground down or re-worked somehow.

I appreciate the efforts Paul went to to accomodate my request for an add-on to my vintage Milestones, unfortunately the experience was such that I will likely never purchase another product from Tempus.
 

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