Jump to content
Fly Tying
Sign in to follow this  
Bruce Norikane

Anvil Apex - great customer service

Recommended Posts

I am reposting this from another non-vise related thread.



My first and only vise is an Anvil Apex that I've had for almost 20 years. It has been a very solid vise, holding hooks down to 28 and up to my largest hook, a 4. It probably holds larger, but I haven't tried.



Anvil is built in Indiana by the Vogel family. They provide excellent customer service. They recently replaced the jaws for my Apex vise under warranty. No handling or shipping charges - completely free. My vise is now good as new.



Please note - my jaws were worn from 20 years of use. There was no manufacturing defect, just normal wear. Like brakes that need replacement. After many years of use, my vise started spitting out small flies. Size 18 and above were fine, but when I tried to grip just the bottom of the gap on smaller hooks, they would sometimes spit out. If I rotated the jaws and used the bottom edge, they held fine, but that is not ideal as the handle is in the way. I wanted to take vise apart and reverse the jaws, but couldn't figure out how.



The fly shop where I bought the vise closed over 10 years ago, so no local support. Some years ago, Wolff Industries bought Anvil from the Vogel brothers mostly for their commercial scissor business, so I was a little worried about service and warranty.



I called Wolff to ask about reversing the jaws or buying replacements. I was quickly transferred to their "Indiana facility". Frank Vogel answered the phone. He is the designer of the Anvil vises and still runs Anvil manufacturing for Wolff. He quickly decided that my jaws were worn, so he sent me a new jaw replacement kit under warranty! No questions about anything, just email him my address. We spoke for quite awhile on the phone, and he gave me some advice on adjusting the vise.



Now that I know how to take the vise apart, I can use both sides of my new jaws and the bottom of my old jaws, so I have another 60 years of service.



I have one other story on outstanding Anvil customer service. I bought a spring loaded Anvil scissor, also 20 years ago. A few years ago, the spring broke. I called and spoke with Anvil, USA CEO, Barbara Vogel. Although my scissors had been discontinued many years before, they had stored spare parts and offered to send me a replacement spring under warranty. A few days later, I received a whole new pair of scissors!



Sorry for the long post, but I truly appreciate the great service from Anvil, a company that really stands behind its customers. I have no connection with Anvil or the Vogels, except as a very satisfied customer.


Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

that is the only thing which sets apart good old American Made exceptionalism any more. Customer service when you need it, and hopefully you don't need it very often. I have a set of Anvil "ice" scissors which I bought 20 years ago, and they are still going strong. I don't use them every day, or even every week, and I take care of my gear, but still, they are almost as "new" as when I bought them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I am reposting this from another non-vise related thread.

My first and only vise is an Anvil Apex that I've had for almost 20 years. It has been a very solid vise, holding hooks down to 28 and up to my largest hook, a 4. It probably holds larger, but I haven't tried.

Anvil is built in Indiana by the Vogel family. They provide excellent customer service. They recently replaced the jaws for my Apex vise under warranty. No handling or shipping charges - completely free. My vise is now good as new.

Please note - my jaws were worn from 20 years of use. There was no manufacturing defect, just normal wear. Like brakes that need replacement. After many years of use, my vise started spitting out small flies. Size 18 and above were fine, but when I tried to grip just the bottom of the gap on smaller hooks, they would sometimes spit out. If I rotated the jaws and used the bottom edge, they held fine, but that is not ideal as the handle is in the way. I wanted to take vise apart and reverse the jaws, but couldn't figure out how.

The fly shop where I bought the vise closed over 10 years ago, so no local support. Some years ago, Wolff Industries bought Anvil from the Vogel brothers mostly for their commercial scissor business, so I was a little worried about service and warranty.

I called Wolff to ask about reversing the jaws or buying replacements. I was quickly transferred to their "Indiana facility". Frank Vogel answered the phone. He is the designer of the Anvil vises and still runs Anvil manufacturing for Wolff. He quickly decided that my jaws were worn, so he sent me a new jaw replacement kit under warranty! No questions about anything, just email him my address. We spoke for quite awhile on the phone, and he gave me some advice on adjusting the vise.

Now that I know how to take the vise apart, I can use both sides of my new jaws and the bottom of my old jaws, so I have another 60 years of service.

I have one other story on outstanding Anvil customer service. I bought a spring loaded Anvil scissor, also 20 years ago. A few years ago, the spring broke. I called and spoke with Anvil, USA CEO, Barbara Vogel. Although my scissors had been discontinued many years before, they had stored spare parts and offered to send me a replacement spring under warranty. A few days later, I received a whole new pair of scissors!

Sorry for the long post, but I truly appreciate the great service from Anvil, a company that really stands behind its customers. I have no connection with Anvil or the Vogels, except as a very satisfied customer.

 

Just a quick question how do you get the jaws out to replace them ?

And that's great customer service .....to be admired by all .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

...

Just a quick question how do you get the jaws out to replace them ?

And that's great customer service .....to be admired by all .

 

 

post-23704-0-97939500-1466094216_thumb.jpg

 

The jaws are a steel rod that go all the way through the vise to the locking handle.In the lock handle there's hole with a pin that goes through that end of the jaws. To remove the jaws, you have to punch out that pin.

 

Removing the pin takes a lot of force. I used a small bolt as a punch. Put the bolt over the pin and hit if with a hammer until it stuck out the other side. Then I pulled the pin out with some pliers. Not too difficult, but the pin could easily be damaged in the process. Anvil sent me new jaws, two pins, two set screws and a small hex wrench in the replacement kit.

 

With the pin out, disassembling the jaws is quite simple. I followed these instructions from Anvil:

 

Using a punch, drive out the lock handle pin

Twist the jaw adjusting nut to expose a set screw underneath the nut

Loosen the set screw with hex wrench

Slide out the old jaw

 

Reverse directions to reassemble.

 

Getting a new pin in was difficult for me, but luckily a very skilled neighbor helped me. We used his small drill press to push the pin back in. With four hands and some scraps of metal, it wasn't too hard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a issue with my Anvil vice. The handle wont stay on. I'll have to contact them.

 

Do you mean one of the black plastic handles over the hex screws that tighten the rotation of jaws or hold the shaft in the table clamp?

 

I took off the lower one that tightens the shaft in the table clamp. I couldn't tighten it enough with my fingers. Taking it off, I can use an Allen wrench that easily tightens the shaft. Almost never touch that screw again.

 

The upper one is more useful, since it stops the jaws from rotating. When mine fell off, I just pushed it back on, but it's not really needed. As long as the set screw on the opposite side of the vise is adjusted correctly, I don't need much force to free or freeze the jaw rotation. After many years of doing it wrong, I read this tip on a tying forum. Possibly this one. Thanks to whoever posted that tip!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

I have a issue with my Anvil vice. The handle wont stay on. I'll have to contact them.

 

Do you mean one of the black plastic handles over the hex screws that tighten the rotation of jaws or hold the shaft in the table clamp?

 

I took off the lower one that tightens the shaft in the table clamp. I couldn't tighten it enough with my fingers. Taking it off, I can use an Allen wrench that easily tightens the shaft. Almost never touch that screw again.

 

The upper one is more useful, since it stops the jaws from rotating. When mine fell off, I just pushed it back on, but it's not really needed. As long as the set screw on the opposite side of the vise is adjusted correctly, I don't need much force to free or freeze the jaw rotation. After many years of doing it wrong, I read this tip on a tying forum. Possibly this one. Thanks to whoever posted that tip!

 

No its the metal handle that turns the vice. I used some thread lock on the threads and it seems to have fixed the issue.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a good thing it wasn't a Renzetti;)

 

We have met with the Wolff people who now produce the vises, and they do an excellent job. The Apex is my go to midge vise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

I have a issue with my Anvil vice. The handle wont stay on. I'll have to contact them.

 

...

No its the metal handle that turns the vice. I used some thread lock on the threads and it seems to have fixed the issue.

 

 

 

 

 

[post-23704-0-89614200-1466608865_thumb.jpg

 

Glad you figured it out!

 

Mine did the same after a dozen years. I didn't know about the Rotation Tension hex screw on the back of the vise (see photo.) Finally noticed a tip on one of these forums and adjusted that screw. Stopped the jaw assembly from coming out and made it much easier to lock the rotation with the black plastic handle on the front.

 

I've never had to touch the Rotation Tension screw again, except to replace the jaws.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just bought one of the full rotary vices from them, should arrive tomorrow. The anvil atlas. I really like hearing about companies with good customer service. Thanks for this post. Made me want to buy from them.

 

I have an example of this... When I was younger I had a Toyota that burst into flames for no reason after 9k miles (I bought it new and it was still under warranty). Toyota said they needed to take the car to figure out what happened so they could compensate me for the loss and issue the warranty. Turned out they took it to see if there is a way to get out of paying. Their exact words a week later was "after evaluating the vehicle, we have found that there is no way anyone would be able to find evidence that it was our fault the car burst into flames". They went on to say "if you try to take us to court for the money, we have better lawyers and will make sure you get put in jail for arson and illegal warranty fraud". They were trying to say I blew up the car. Hahaha. So I had to go through insurance which sucked cause my premiums went up after.

 

Fast forward a year or so, and my next car was an Audi (I was making decent money at the time). There was some issue with the vehicle that they couldn't figure out. I had brought it in for service many times all for the same thing. volkswagen called me out of the blue (VW and Audi are both the same) and appologised for the inconvenience of the car problem. They promised to resolve the issue, but wanted to compensate me for my time and frustration. They wrote me a $4k check just to say sorry. They did finally fix the issue a week later, and I never had that problem again.

 

Needless to say, I've owned only VW's or audi's since. I've had 3 of them actually since. And I've never owned another Toyota or ever will again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just bought one of the full rotary vices from them, should arrive tomorrow. The anvil atlas. I really like hearing about companies with good customer service. Thanks for this post. Made me want to buy from them.

 

 

I really like the Apex. I don't love the Atlas. The notches in the jaw are at a weird angle. The notches really work for the Apex because you can also change the angle of the head. Not so on the Atlas. Hard to explain on the interwebs, but you'll see when you get it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a big fan of the Apex. I also got positive support when I got mine, several years ago. Small and rugged and will hold a hook fiercely.

 

They come with a base and a clamp. Priced extremely well for what you get. I use mine as a travel vise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

that is the only thing which sets apart good old American Made exceptionalism any more. Customer service when you need it, and hopefully you don't need it very often. I have a set of Anvil "ice" scissors which I bought 20 years ago, and they are still going strong. I don't use them every day, or even every week, and I take care of my gear, but still, they are almost as "new" as when I bought them.

I too have old scissors by Anvil. I use them a lot. I like that I can sharpen and tighten them. I think they are just as good as my older Thompson Ice scissors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...