Monday, July 19, 2010

On the Matter of Warranties - and GREAT outdoor brands!

While at the Vermont Mountain Bike Festival this weekend, we spent a good deal of time practicing our tent set-up skills at the Nemo Tent booth Nicole from the home office surprised us with something new we didn’t already know about their tents…they all come with a lifetime warranty!

It’s a testament to the quality of the brands we carry that many of them come with lifetime guarantees. You may have seen on our last post that on several occasions MSR (and Thermarest - both owned by Cascade Designs) have shocked us by covering product issues (like broken tent poles) by replacing items at no cost to the customer…even when the damage clearly wasn’t a defect, but was the result of customer action and normal wear.

In backpacks both Gregory and Osprey cover their packs with lifetime warranties, and even our Darn Tough wool socks come with a lifetime guarantee... Imagine that!

Boot and watch manufacturers tend to treat warranties differently. Since both products can be subjected to extensive daily use--and wear and tear—their warranties are more limited. All of our boot manufacturers limit their guarantees against defects in workmanship or materials to 1 year, yet we’ve seen extensions made in some cases. Believe us we’ve recently seen some cases where boots have been subjected to so much abuse in as little as two weeks that the line between a product failure and user issue has been pretty close. Never-the-less our three boot brands Lowa, Zamberlan, and Vasque have been Fantastic to work with, have quickly dealt with the issues, and have been generous in honoring warranty requests. St. Moritz watches come with a 2/4/6 year warranty. More than a great service record, though, we have heard from many many customers - and seen the reviews on the web - of the amazing quality of these boots and watches. Perhaps even more telling in this case is the number of warranty issues we have NOT been called about.

At CCOutdoorStore our goal is to make sure you get a quality product, but in rare case when something isn't perfect, we work hard to be your advocate and give you the service you deserve. Just give us a call at 1-802-244-4000 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 1-802-244-4000 end_of_the_skype_highlighting begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 1-802-244-4000 end_of_the_skype_highlighting or email us at and we’ll get the process moving so as to minimize your down time.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The MSR Hubba Hubba Tent - legendary innovation, quality and service

At, we pride ourselves on bringing our customers the best gear with a good price and fast and friendly service. But what makes gear good, much less "the best"? We think it's about innovation, yes, but just as important is long-term durability and a strong product quality program.

Enter the MSR Hubba Hubba tent from Cascade Designs. This tent boasted the latest innovation in lightweight tent design a few years back. And in what we consider to be a great move, they actually DIDN'T change it just for the sake of change!

The Hubba Hubba's Innovation:
Ushering in camping and backpacking innovation in 2007, the MSR® Hubba™ 1-person and MSR® Hubba Hubba™ 2-person tents were introduced with a one-pole hub and swivel design to deliver the perfect combination of light weight and livability. This great design was simple and easy to set up, but revolutionary in delivering interior space without a lot of extra weight and gizmos. That alone went a long way to making the MSR Hubba Hubba a highly sought-after backpacking and camping tent. And the innovation still holds strong today... the MSR Hubba Hubba still one of the best-selling ultralight tents in the world.

Other features like the two doors and two large vestibule areas make the Hubba Hubba a great backpacking or small camping tent for any adventure. Two people and their gear can move around pretty comfortably, and only carry 4 pounds, 3 oz to the campsite. With its virtually total screen body, you can use the MSR Hubba Hubba without the fly for those great nights when you just want to sleep under the stars but WITHOUT the bugs!

MSR Hubba Hubba Quality:

Cascade Designs - parent company to MSR products - backs all of its products with a lifetime guarantee. And they don't split hairs with you about what that means.

We recently had a customer who had his Hubba Hubba tent for over a year and broke his poles. He was very apologetic because the break was not due to normal wear and tear, but rather was caused from from external and undue pressure on the poles. He wanted to pay for a new set. Now we knew about Cascade Designs' fantastic lifetime warranty on all their MSR tents, stoves, and snowshoes, but figured this was a borderline case. After speaking with Cascade Designs, we discovered they would replace the Hubba Hubba tent poles for free. Great!

And a few months back a customer who had her Hubba Hubba tent for more than 5 years and used it well (and quite often) poked a hole in her fly. You guessed it, Cascade Designs was willing to fix free of charge. Unbelievable!

Now we're pretty sure there's a bunch of legal jargon that says that Cascade Designs does not have to replace anything and everything on an MSR Hubba Hubba tent whether it's due to abuse or normal wear and tear or not - but in practice, these guys do what's right... and even go above and beyond. They've even got a great repair program that saves the landfills and extends the life perfectly good equipment for many many years.

In our experience, when it comes to MSR and the Hubba Hubba Tent we're not talking about a lot of product quality issues - this backpacking workhorse is build to last right out of the box.

So a big shout out to Cascade Designs/MSR for making such a fantastic lightweight tent for backpacking, but most of all for standing by it with their lifetime warranty and general customer-friendly approach to each and every product.

Check out the MSR Hubba Hubba Tent at today.

see also:
MSR Hubba Hubba HP Tent