The Covid 19 pandemic continues to impact our lives, to some with devastating effects. But we are all affected. The reason for this blog, how are we affected? and what effect will that have on you as a customer?
To start, manufacturing in the United States is being devastated by the pandemic, pretty much all the manufacturers are having material supply issues and of course staffing issues. Although we are still getting stock, much of it is going to customer backorders, hence you are not seeing free stock being allocated to the website.
I emphasize we are getting the stock, but our observation is there is no overall supply improvement from the United States, so 2022 is looking to be similar to 2020 and 2021, with regards to supply. We, therefore, would like to say that if we have allowed preorders on the website, you can feel confident that your order will be filled, albeit in some cases between 1 -3 months wait, and our apologies sometimes much longer. (We are aware that some items are up to 12 months on backorder, in the new year we will talk to the factory about this and contact those of you in this situation.)
If you can't see it on the website, we are unable to buy it. Sometimes we are being notified that items are available on the U.S. website but not ours, mostly we get these products later, but you don't see them because of our backorder list.
Lastly, we have backorders in place with the U.S. factories, but we are rarely allocated our entire stock orders, so for 2022 if you do not backorder what you want you will probably not see it on the website as "in stock".
OK, next. Hand Tool Shows, now is when we begin to arrange our attendance in shows for next year, these dates also affect our woodwork classes, so if we don't get it right now, next year will become chaotic. The problem is our various Governments cannot get any sort of cohesive regulations in place, with regards to travel, i.e. the debacle with the rapid antigen test where Queensland requires them and South Australia does not have any for us to use, and getting a PCR test in a timely manner is next to impossible.
We cannot risk getting trapped by this dithering, we are a very small business, we do not have staff, and to attend a show entails us both being there. If we are both are stuck somewhere our business stops and we cannot support our family.
So, we will not be attending any Hand Tool Events in 2022.
Woodworking Classes, venue restrictions have been reintroduced here in South Australia, meaning that the first two of our "Essential Skills" classes (coded as ESWJ and JMA) can't go ahead, we need 8 people to attend to make it viable, and we are not allowed 8 in our studio. The Journeyman's Advanced Joinery Course (coded JMT), is going ahead as we can allow 4 people to attend. We will look to see what else we can offer and we do have some things we are working on, keep checking the website for more information.
Shipping has been woeful at times both to us and from us to you, it really is a sheer volume issue, and without a huge injection of resources has come down to patience, Australia Post, DHL, UPS all have done a mighty job and continue to amaze with what they get done.
Some good news Knew Concepts have got a large order on the way to us, Auriou also, we will be increasing our stock lines with Hock Tools and with Lost Art Press, speaking of Lost Art Press, these guys have shown how to get things done in these really tough times, they deserve to be swamped with praise for their achievement.
Are we OK? yes we have survived without too many problems, apart from the above, this is largely due to you our customers, your patience, understanding, and support is so very much appreciated, this allows us to really like what we do, and in life there is nothing else so satisfying. Thankyou.
Venita and Anthony.