Business detail for Sound Boatworks

Sound Boatworks

1.4 Star Rating Rating: 1.4 out of 5
based on 5 reviews
3229 clicks on this business

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Boating Gear and Supplies / General Boating Equipment
Boating Gear and Supplies / Boater Apparel
Boating Gear and Supplies / Boating Accessories

12 Hammock Rd. S
Westbrook, CT 06498
Middlesex County
Business Description:
Sound Boatworks offers sailing products, boat gear, and boating accessories on their online store.
Sound Boatworks offers sailing products, boat gear, and boating accessories on their online store.
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5 Reviews for Sound Boatworks

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Reviews Number 1

Anne Arundel County

1 Star Rating
March 7, 2014

Reflecting similar reviews above, I strongly recommend anyone doing business with Sound Boatworks look at the Better Business Bureau first. As of March 7, there were 33 complaints and an "F" rating for Sound Boatworks. Now, after mine, there are 34 complaints. I ordered life vests in November 2013, and returned them in early December. Repeatedly since early December Chris Boynton, co-owner and manager, has acknowledged that the vests were returned, and dozens of times over the last three months promised that my refund would appear on my credit card "the next day," next Monday," "by the end of the week," and so on. Today I contacted my credit card company, which has credited the amount back to my card while they take up the dispute with Chris Boynton. That, in fact, seems to be Sound Boatworks' strategy, as similar behavior is alleged in Yelp and Yahoo reviews, as well as complaints at the Better Business Bureau -- Mr. Boynton repeatedly makes promises of a refund that he has no intention of honoring, calculating that the customer will eventually turn in frustration to his or her credit card company for dispute resolution. Boynton will then deny the facts to the credit card company, keep the product and keep the customer's money, while the credit card company eats the refund. As one of the reviewers notes above, integrity should be a given in the business world. Fortunately, only rarely does one encounter a business like Sound Boatworks -- for every unethical businesses like his, there are 10,000 ethical ones. Stay away from this company.

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1 Star Rating
April 15, 2013

Avoid these people ....

Ordered a Laser dolly, they charged my credit card, no dolly shipped for 6 weeks ..... multiple e-mails, called, no shipment no response no refund .... had to protest through VISA .... just avoid Sound Boatworks

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Reviews Number 1

Blue S.

1 Star Rating
September 29, 2012

The Facts

Boater Rated Reviews: Today, September 26, 2012, Sound Boatworks, LLC, in Westbrook, CT, has 2 reviews; one is 1 star, the other is 3 star; both reference slow shipping.

Yelp Reviews: To date, September 26, 2012, there are 13 Yelp reviews; 12 of those reviews are 'filtered'; with the exception of one, all of the reviews are 1 star. All of the reviews reference slow shipping / misstated ETA for order fulfillment / delivery.

Better Business Bureau: To date, September 26,2012, the BBB Business Review has 17 complaints for Sound Boatworks, LLC, in Westbrook, CT; 15 of those complaints have to do with shipping. 2 of those complaints involve a problem with the product or service. The BBB rating is an 'F'.

The Experience

I found Sound Boatworks, LLC, in Westbrook, CT, following a search for foul weather gear; though they appeared to have competitive prices, I'd found better elsewhere so called to find if they'd price match the other vendor(s). I spoke with 'Chris', who turned out to be Chris Boynton, one of the principals. Chris offered to discount the item and informed me that I should note it in the checkout area.

I placed my order on Friday, July 6th. The following Monday, July 9th, I reached out to Sound Boatworks, LLC, (Westbrook, CT) once again; I wanted to order another item and have its shipment bundled with the previous order, assuming that the previous order had not shipped. I exchanged instant messages with 'Chris' (the Sound Boatworks, LLC website provides IM capabilities), whom I assumed to be Chris Boynton; he informed me that the shipments could be combined and that I needed only to add a note to the online order. I asked about transit time to the West Coast, and he informed me that it's typically 5-7 days.

I placed the 2nd order online following this exchange.

Shortly after placing the 2nd order, I received an email from Hutch Fisher, one of the Sound Boatworks, LLC (Westbrook, CT) staff, thanking me for the order, stating that the order was 'being processed and will be dispatched shortly via FedEx or UPS'; the email also stated that Sound Boatworks was 'still having difficulty processing Paypal orders' and requested that I resubmit the order with a credit card.

I responded to the email stating that I would resubmit the order with a credit card, and that if they foresaw some delay in shipping, or that they did not anticipate the gear arriving by July 18, 2012, they should call or email to make alternate arrangements i.e. expedited shipping option.

I resubmitted the order; Sound Boatworks cancelled the Paypal payment.

By Wednesday, July 11th, I had not received a shipping update, so I reached out via email to Hutch Fisher, informing him that, as previously stated, I had a hard cut off date of July 18th - and that I needed the gear by then, as I'd be getting uderway for an extended ocean passage on July 19th.

In response, I received two automated emails from the Yahoo Shopping Checkout system that Sound Boatworks uses: Order Status: Will ship in 2-3 days.

On Thursday, July 12, I called again and spoke with Chris; I asked for expected shipping date, reiterating that if rec'd after July 18, the gear would be useless to me. Chris looked into the order #s and informed me that they were expected to ship on Friday, July 13th - and that he'd mark them as 2-Day Express, to ensure that they got to me by the 18th; I thanked him for this, and offered to cover the cost of the expedited shipping.

To their credit, a day prior to my departure I received a partial shipment: one of the two ocean foul weather jackets had arrived - the other had not.

Fast forward a month to late August and I'm back on shore, anticipating the final foul weather jacket to be waiting for me; it is not there, a full 6 weeks after its initial order date and purchase. I call Sound Boatworks and ask about its status: "it's shipping shortly", I'm told - which I've heard before; I decide to cancel the order and have the $423 refunded - and am told that I should anticipate it when I next check my statement.

After a few days, I note that there's still no credit - so IM them (for written record) and am assured that it's processing; 5 WEEKS LATER I AM STILL WAITING ON THE CREDIT. It's now in dispute with credit card.

Clearly, Sound Boatworks, LLC, does not stock items; they're either drop-shipped from the manufacturer or are shipped and re-shipped. Further, based on my experience, other Yelp reviews and the Better Business Bureau Business Review complaint file, they are not in the business of providing accurate guidance on realistic shipping estimates.

Additional Thoughts

Integrity - and competence - in business should not be the exception; if a given item is not stocked, or there will be a delay in shipment, proactively let the customer know; though you may lose that order, you'll likely gain a long-term customer for your honesty.


I'm disappointed but not surprised; I should have done more due diligence prior to placing the order. And I should have checked out the other online reviews, as part of that. Would not recommend.

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Reviews Number 1


1 Star Rating
April 22, 2012

All i can say about is they horrible at shipping. Its been two weeks sense my order was confirmed they have taken the money and still my items have not been shipped...Ive called them daily and they tell me the parts are in and we will have it shipped tomorrow....I heard that for about 3 days then they tell me they need to get the parts from the warehouse then they will be shipped the next day....and not until 1 and a half later do they tell me they do not have my bailer cap in stock and that they are ordering it themselves i dont understand how you can do business all on lies. Im fed up with them and if my order doesnt get ssent out tomorrow on monday im going to be so livid i want to demand compesation. Also when i found out the bailer cap was not in stock i was told they would send the rest of my order out without it which they still have 6 days later and they also said they would call me back with a time expectancy withthe bailer cap which they never did!!

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Friends Number1

Reviews Number 6


3 Star Rating
April 10, 2012

I ordered a duffel bag via the Sound Boatworks online store. I give them an A for effort. They were very good every time I called or emailed to find out the status of the order. Unfortunately, the experience wasn't what I'd come to expect based on my experience with other online retailers. The first confirmation message I received indicated that the bag would ship in 24 hours. There was no tracking information. After a couple of days, I called and was told there was some issue with updating the actual status of the order. When I checked the tracking info later that day, the shipping date was set to 2/3 days. After another 5 or 6 days, I had to call again. Same sort of confusion about the status of the order from the friendly customer service rep. Eventually I received a message saying that the order was estimated to arrive in another week. By that time, my trip was imminent and I had no confidence that the bag would arrive in time, so I canceled the order. I think this is a good shop with friendly and well-intentioned staff. The issue is that I'm so spoiled by the reliability of other online retailers that any lack of clarity about the shipping / delivery status of an order, as happened in my recent experience, really shakes my confidence in the company.

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