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Brew-Stuff Review

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  • Brew-Stuff Review


    To help people to avoid aggravation from this vendor I decided to post a review of the equipment and service I received from Don at Brew-Stuff. I sold my previous business in Alaska in pursuit of starting a brewery in eastern Washington. After completing phase 1 one of my plan (moving from Alaska to eastern washington) it was time to execute phase 2 and begin procuring equipment.

    Since my location was in Washington and their prices seemed fair, I decided to go with Brew-Stuff for the purchase of my brewhouse. After contacting Don I settled on the 5 bbl direct fired domes brew house from them. I Don the week before I headed up to Lynden, WA to make sure the brewhouse was available and he informed me it was at that time, so I let him know I would be down the following Monday. After making the 6+ hour trip I arrived at Dons shop at about 4pm in November so the sun was starting to go down. I met with Don and he revealed that he didn't have all the tanks for the 5 bbl direct but he did have a 5bbl electric, ready to go for several thousand more. After much deliberation I decided the electric would be worth it, so I asked him a second time if he had everything ready to go and he assured me he did. We started loading up the HLT, BK, and MT into my trailer then when we went to gather the rest of the parts he informs that he doesn't have the heat exchanger or control box for the system. At this point I had been driving for several hours spent an hour and a half loading equipment and still have to get back home before 3am. So I agreed with Don to have the heat exchanger and the control box shipped to the brewery once he got it all in stock. After getting all that settled I asked him to supply me with an invoice to show what was on back order and what I had purchased to which he replied that he would have to type it up on his computer at home and then he would e-mail the invoice to me. So once again i was exhausted and just wanted to get home so once again I agreed to his terms.

    After getting home I waited a week and still didn't get an invoice from Don so I called him and asked where the invoice was. He claimed to have lost my e-mail and asked if i could email him from his website with my email and shipping info which I did. I waited a few days then started trying to call him to see what was up and low and behold he wasn't answering the phone, so I called him from another line and he picked up immediately. Finally after 2 weeks after the purchase I managed to get an invoice from him, but still hadn't received the control box or the heat exchanger from him. So once again I played phone tag with him until i finally got his attention with a message that I had a friend heading up Lynden way to spend some time with family and that they would be more then happy to pick up the control box and heat exchanger so he wouldn't have to pay to ship them. He immediately called me back and said everything would be ready. As it turns out on the day my friend showed up to pick up the control box and heat exchanger Don had to "head out of town" to deliver a brew system. I contacted Don after the incident and asked him how soon he could ship the control box and heat exchanger he informed me he would have it shipped the first thing Monday. So once I again I waited a week for a box that never showed up and once again he started to dodge my calls so I called from another line and he picked up right away and said well the box should have been there by now, so I asked him to give me the tracking number which he said he would text it to me later (which i didn't receive until i informed him that i would have to get a lawyer involved)

    So finally after all this going back and forth and about 4 months later I finally received the control box. No documentation what so ever came along with it (not even the literature for the PIDS). Then upon after further inspection from my electrician and my self we discovered 2 of the 3 breakers in the box were only rated for 10 amps (each element in the HLT and BK, draw at least 30, and the other breaker was a 40), screws are stripped out of the PID controllers that hold in the temp probes, the heating elements have no product info AT ALL, and many of the wires going to the contactors were too short to reach from the breakers so they were just left loose and not even hooked up.

    I still haven't received my heat exchanger and do not expect any kind of satisfaction from Don at this point, but I can at least warn other brewers of the risks involved when dealing with him. DO NOT DO IT!

    Don at Brew Stuff is ZERO help after he gets his cash, and the products are incomplete and barely functional at best.

    Do not buy from Brew-stuff unless you want an exercise in frustration

  • #2
    Second That!!

    My name is David Smith, Co-Owner and Brewer at LyonSmith Brewing Co. in Penn Yan, NY, and I want to share my experience with you regarding urlybird, and The quality of the equipment isn't bad; I wish I knew what Chinese company built it, because I have some, but few and minor, issues with what equipment I have received from brew-stuff.

    As far as Don the owner is concerned, I am in the middle of an extremely bad experience with them. I pulled the trigger in May 2014 on two 2 bbl direct fire systems, with one 5 bbl HLT instead of the two 2 bbl HLT's. I am still waiting on some of my equipment from him (3/31/15). I have not received the false bottoms for my mash tun that his website prices at $300 a piece. I am also missing the 5 bbl HLT, a lid for one of my kettles, as well as some other odds and ends. I received some shoddy copper rings in place of the stainless steel false bottoms that I should have received claiming them to be better than the stainless false bottoms (they are not). When he initially sent me my tanks, he didn't send me either of my brites. When I called to get to the bottom of it, he said that it was okay, that the fermenters he sent were unitanks, so I didn't really need separate brites. Not that he offered to refund them, just I didn't need them. I did finally get that one resolved.

    Every time I try to contact him, I get dodged. When I do get through, I am told to email him. Those emails go unanswered. I am certain that he will never make good on his commitment to me. The last time we spoke, I informed him that I would be posting on here about the fact he's a scam artist if I didn't get resolution and he had the audacity to say that if I did so, I was commiting blackmail. OK Don, I have now done so. Feel free to take me to court.

    I know his pricing is really good, that's why I went with him. Just caveat emptor, "let the Buyer Beware". This guy has stolen enough from the hard working people of our industry. It's too late for me.


    • #3
      An update on my don experience. In addition to the above mentioned issues it turns out that the heating elements don't show any proof of being UL listed (so good luck finding an electrician that will hook them up), and the plugs on the control box that connect to the elements were under rated as well.


      • #4
        I applaud you for trying to fix this. I'm not a customer but i feel that noticing your flaws and trying to fix them speaks volumes.


        • #5
          Originally posted by urllybird
          this the customer service manager at Brewstuff

          i realize these are old complaints - but we would like to have you contact us directly to see if we can ensure your issues have been dealt with

          please cont me at 604 825 1212 - and we will try to help these past issues

          also , lyonsmith - i have contacted you several times in an attempt to rectify your situation

          I have merged with Brew stuff to help with the customer service and hope to solve these past issues

          Our equipment is quality built and we have very few operational quality issues but the customer service of Brewstuff is wanting - I am trying to solve all past issues
          Unbelievable, I tried to contact you for months regarding my issues and it was just an exercise in frustration. So now you come out over a year later and try to justify the way you treat your customers! .

          New merger or not I still will not do any business with brew-stuff. I warn the rest of you considering working with Brewstuff to be sure of what your getting yourself into. Be duly forewarned.
          Last edited by kasbrew; 04-21-2016, 11:44 PM.


          • #6
            Originally posted by urllybird
            hello shane - i called and left a message for you - please respond
            Yup and I returned your call and replied to our telephone conversation via email as you requested 6 days ago and still haven't received a response.