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Old 04-02-2007, 05:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Just wanted to share my great experience with Fortte...I'd seen posts from Salo on the board quite a few times, and decided to contact him directly to have them make a custom case for my 8700g.

I had two significant changes that I wanted made to the as-sold case on their website...Salo checked with the manufacturing site to see if they could do it, and emailed me back. He told me it would be ~4 weeks because it had to be custom made for me.

About 3 weeks in, I saw a tracking number on their website, but couldn't get any tracking info. I emailed Salo to see what was going on, and he emailed me back within one hour to let me know that the case arrived from manufacturing, but that when they checked it vs my custom specifications there was a mistake.

He had the plant remake the case per my specifications, and the newly made case arrived at my home last Friday. It is absolutely perfect...exactly per the drawings that I sent Salo.

I'm so impressed that Fortte caught the mistake on the 1st one rather than just sending it on to me, with the hope that I would accept it as-is. It's rare these days to find a company willing to ensure that their merchandise is 100% correct before shipping it to the end-user (especially in a case like this where Fortte could claim that I didn't clearly enough communicate my desired changes to the stock case). That decision turned what could have potentially been a bad experience for me (had I received the case with problems, as originally sent from the Fortte production facility).

Anyway, the case is PERFECT...works exactly as I hoped it would. Fortte delivered it on time, got the changes right once all was said-and-done, and didn't charge me any extra to do the custom work. I was even able to use a 20% off coupon posted in the forums!

I highly recommend contacting Salo at Fortte if you have similar needs (not going to post his email address but you can search and locate it). And, before anyone asks...no, I have no affiliation with Fortte. I'm just a (very) happy customer.
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Old 04-02-2007, 06:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If you don't mind I'm asking, would you post the picture of the case. I just want to see how much you can customize the case.
And it's great to know that Fortte will do such thing.
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Old 04-02-2007, 07:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i was pretty happy with their service too at first.

great friendly rep over the phone.. monica i think? custom deal as well for my 8700r w/extended door.

but here i am about 6 months in and my non leather case has begun to crack at both top edges already.. past the stiching, a good 1/4 inch at least on both sides so far.

i dont use the blackberry like mad but guess it does see some at least medium use (keep it in my front jeans pocket, and am fairly active)

i brought it to customer services attention and they asked for a picture of the damage which i sent them and that was over 24 hours ago (full workday now at least)

i dont forsee the non leather case lasting a full year with the current rate of deterioration and was inquiring if they had some sort of fix for the weak point in the case. we'll see what they come up with as a solution wether it be "we dont warrenty non leather products" or "we can offer discount on future products as a consolation to your displeasure" or "let us replace with an updated non leather case and let us know how it works out"..

hopefully the ladder, will keep you informed.

it is a sweet case though, just wish it was more durable in the long run.
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Old 04-03-2007, 05:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b3n_asian_freak
If you don't mind I'm asking, would you post the picture of the case. I just want to see how much you can customize the case.
And it's great to know that Fortte will do such thing.
I actually had two significant changes made:

(1) I had a fixed clip installed on the standard vertical case with elastic on the sides for an extended battery. That clip design isn't normally offered with the standard vertical case (it's offered on the one with the lanyard...the STiL, I believe...but not on the one without the lanyard).
(2) I had them install the clip at a bit of a strange location. I asked them to move the clip to the top of the case...I wanted the "pocket" that actually holds the clip to be exactly flush with the top of the case, which allows the loop that goes on the belt to extend above the case. This allows the case to actually be positioned such that the top of the case is BELOW the top of the belt when it's worn...that way it eliminates the possibility of the case poking me in the side when I sit down. It works perfect...just like I hoped. I had a case previously that extended so high above the belt that it was uncomfortable to wear anytime I sat down. So, I'd go to a meeting and then have to take it off and lay it on the table. My concern was that at some point I'd pack up my laptop and walk away from the meeting room, leaving my Blackberry behind. Now, it's comfortable all the time, and I never have to take it off.

As far as how much customization Fortte can do, the best thing to do is to make a decent drawing that reflects your desired changes and forward it to them (I'd suggest going through Salo...he answers requests quickly if he's in the office, and is quite easy to work with). I had some ideas that they said they could do and others that they said they couldn't do. They will actually forward your request to their manufacturing facility (which I believe is out of the country), and then get back to you to let you know if it's able to be done. The bottom line is that it will depend greatly on how your desired change fits into their current work process, difficulty of the change, etc. I'm confident that they err on the side of caution...in other words, if they tell you that they can pull it off, then they will take care of it successfully.

Good luck!
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Old 04-16-2007, 03:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smak View Post
i was pretty happy with their service too at first.

great friendly rep over the phone.. monica i think? custom deal as well for my 8700r w/extended door.

but here i am about 6 months in and my non leather case has begun to crack at both top edges already.. past the stiching, a good 1/4 inch at least on both sides so far.

i dont use the blackberry like mad but guess it does see some at least medium use (keep it in my front jeans pocket, and am fairly active)

i brought it to customer services attention and they asked for a picture of the damage which i sent them and that was over 24 hours ago (full workday now at least)

i dont forsee the non leather case lasting a full year with the current rate of deterioration and was inquiring if they had some sort of fix for the weak point in the case. we'll see what they come up with as a solution wether it be "we dont warrenty non leather products" or "we can offer discount on future products as a consolation to your displeasure" or "let us replace with an updated non leather case and let us know how it works out"..

hopefully the ladder, will keep you informed.

it is a sweet case though, just wish it was more durable in the long run.

I will gladly look into the problem for you if you can send me the information I requested on a PM I just sent you.

cynical2, THANKS for the kind words.
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Old 04-17-2007, 07:21 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I've had a good experience as well! The glue at the post of my 8700 custom vertical had evaporated and the case was kinda hanging by the leather. Looked horrible and I missed any vibrating calls because I couldn't feel the vibe.

Emailed Salo, sent pictures in and a replacement was sent...with extra stitching to help avoid this issue in the future!!

Just another example of why I only buy my leather cases from fortte (and plastic from Seidio)...service, service and service!

Kudos to Salo and team!!
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Old 04-17-2007, 08:16 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Sorry, folks, this is gonna be a long one . . .

My experience with Fortte has been uneven. I ordered a lateral style pouch for my 8703e back in November. I discovered that I didn't like the magnetic closure used; I found that it often contacted the screen when I removed my BB from the case unless I took extra special care, and I was concerned about scratches. It was also very "fiddly" when trying to get it to close securely . . . it wouldn't simply drop into place.

I send an email to the Fortte support address, and got a response the following day from the company's president, Peter Weiss. He responded that Monica would be contacting me shortly to get more detail and look into the issue. A week passed with no followup, so I sent another inquiry to Peter. I then received a followup from Monica within a day or two.

Monica responded that they would be happy to look into the issue for me after the Christmas rush was over. I said that would be fine, and she reassured me that she would contact me. I heard nothing from her by the 3rd week of January, so I sent another email as a reminder. A few days later, I received a phone call from a gentleman whose name I didn't record, promising to look into options for me, and asking me to provide more detail as to what I was looking for. He also mentioned that Monica had left the company.

I requested a design that uses a hidden magnet; a thin magnetic disk or strip that would actually be sewn in between the leather and liner of the case. I also requested that the USB/charging port be accommodated so that the BB could be charged while in the case. I sent a series of pictures of both an old cell phone case that used the hidden magnet closure, as well as pictures of the 8703e next to the original lateral pouch showing where the USB port was located so that the case could be designed with it accessible. 4 days passed without a response, so I emailed Peter again.

Peter responded quickly, apologizing for the lapse, and offered to make the requested modifications to the design at no charge(!). I found this to be a remarkable gesture, and told him so while thanking him for it. He subsequently followed up a few days later letting me know that the case had been assembled and would be arriving within the next week or two. He also requested that I provide feedback on the new design.

The case arrived. The magnetic closure was nicely hidden as requested, but didn't seem to hold quite as strongly as I'd expected (certainly not as strongly as the one on my old cell phone case). Also, the modification I'd requested to expose the USB charging port was not incorporated. Finally (and not noted in the feedback email I sent to Fortte since it wasn't as immediately obvious), the belt clip was significantly less secure in holding the case on my belt, apparently having been made from thinner spring steel than the one on my previous case.

I composed a feedback email to Peter as requested noting the issues (with the exception of the clip as mentioned above). I asked that another case be designed with the features previously requested, for which I would happily pay. It's been over a month now, with no response.

So, while Fortte did eventually incorporate a modification that I had requested and provided me with a free case in the process, they did not address my other concern about the design, and used an inferior clip in the redesigned version. The case has dislodged from my belt on two occasions now, something that never happened with the original case. They've also failed to respond to my followup with concerns about the redesign, and apparently ignored a potential sale. It seems the company has fluctuated wildly between poor and outstanding customer service over the last 4-5 months, and I feel it's worth noting.

If you've gotten this far, thanks for reading.

And Fortte, if you'd still like to do that redesign that incorporates access to the USB port, I'm still happy to pay for it . . . as long as you go back to the original spring steel used in my first case's belt clip.

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Old 04-28-2007, 09:09 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Hello Forum members:
Thank you for all the follow up and continuos support. We are working to continuously improve our designs, thus we try to satisfy all the request that we receive.
Please 'Dodge DeBoulet'... do not hesitate to contact me at [email address], as you might be aware when we produce a unique piece it is really for testing purposes, the idea is to have a client like you using the case and giving us the necessary feedback to improve or even create a unique design that could eventually be a success ... we had major support from forum members ... ST and many others that based on their problem we tried our best to create a solution.
Regarding clips, we have different offers of clips, we are now going to incorporate 3 more new clips that are in the testing process. Each customer selects the one that prefers, some like more sturdy clips, some low profile, etc. It really depends on their lifestyle...
All forum members are welcome to write us and giving us the opportunity to create the solution...
We are the customized & personalized experts...
Thank you. PRB
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Last edited by PRB : 04-28-2007 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 04-29-2007, 03:01 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by PRB View Post

Hello Forum members:
Thank you for all the follow up and continuos support. We are working to continuously improve our designs, thus we try to satisfy all the request that we receive.
Please 'Dodge DeBoulet'... do not hesitate to contact me at [email address], as you might be aware when we produce a unique piece it is really for testing purposes, the idea is to have a client like you using the case and giving us the necessary feedback to improve or even create a unique design that could eventually be a success ... we had major support from forum members ... ST and many others that based on their problem we tried our best to create a solution.
Regarding clips, we have different offers of clips, we are now going to incorporate 3 more new clips that are in the testing process. Each customer selects the one that prefers, some like more sturdy clips, some low profile, etc. It really depends on their lifestyle...
All forum members are welcome to write us and giving us the opportunity to create the solution...
We are the customized & personalized experts...
Thank you. PRB
Thank you for your response, Peter. I will also be responding via email. The only reason I posted the observations above was that I had gotten no reply to to my email last month.
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Old 05-15-2007, 11:02 AM   #10 (permalink)
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i was pm'd aside after posting in this thread and got totally looked after.

just received a new case in the mail and notice some revisions to the case style also. speaker orifice now shaped to grill, reinforced swivel clip mounting point and the little logo on the front is now gold coloured ;P old one is/was silver.

wouldent hesitate to order from again..
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