Has anyone ever done business with Gc5FX - Advice needed

JKKS

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Ok so I’ve been talking with Gc5FX on ig for the last few days trying to order some Batman related stuff from them.
I should start by saying that I’ve never done any business with this seller, I’m not at all questionning their business practices and I am especially not insinuating anything regarding their reputation or reliability but I have to say a couple of things came up during the conversation that kind of raise a red flag for me so I’m looking for advice/feedback from anyone who has done business with them in the past.

First of, they ask for the entire money upfront. With a 14-18 weeks turnaround time I think it’s pretty unusual to not start with a deposit but fair enough. Things got a little weirder when they insisted that I had to pay for international shipping when placing my order (which is quite a bit of money in and of itself). I can understand covering costs and even labor upfront but a service that they’re going to pay 6 months down the line, not so much. Then again maybe they’re just doing this to streamline their ordering process in which case it’s probably easier for them to operate that way and not have to chase people down or wait for shipping but that threw me off a little bit.

Then and more importantly, they repeatedly ask that I pay through Paypal as friends and family. This is something I usually don’t do with sellers I don’t have a history with and given that one of the sellers I had a history with burnt me on these boards I tend to avoid this entirely and send as goods and services and cover the fees. Which I offered to do in this case and they explicitly refused saying that they’ve done business that way for the last three years and it worked out great. That came up 5 times in the 13 messages we exchanged. The insistence with which they made the request along with the fact that it’s a make or break issue for them doesn’t put my mind at ease.

So basically I’m asking if anyone has ever done business with them in the past, how it went, if those requests are at all unusual or par for the course with this seller because right now I don’t really feel comfortable sending money out there not knowing if I’ll ever see the stuff I paid for. I’m reiterating that I’ve never done any business with them and am just asking for feedback.

Thank you in advance for your help
 
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alensatemybuick

Active Member
I don’t care how great his stuff or his reputation is. Anyone who insists you to use PayPal “friends and family”, to save a few percent on transaction fees is a selfish assh*le who doesn’t respect you / thinks you’re an idiot. Huge red flag (on top of the others you mentioned). As you say, even if those fees add up to something substantial, a seller can simply build those into the price. Maybe it’ll work out and maybe it won’t, but my advise is to RUN AWAY.
 
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Synz314

Sr Member
I don’t care how great his stuff or his reputation is. Anyone who insists you to use PayPal “friends and family”, to save a few percent on transaction fees is a selfish assh*le who doesn’t respect you / thinks you’re an idiot. Huge red flag (on top of the others you mentioned). As you say, even if those fees add up to something substantial, a seller can simply build those into the price. Maybe it’ll work out and maybe it won’t, but my advise is to RUN AWAY.
This. I follow them on IG and their stuff looks absolutely incredible, but that's not worth the risk.

I'd be particularly hesitant ordering Batman stuff under those conditions. Last year WB notoriously sent cease and desists to many well known cowl makers. If that were to happen again and they shut down production, then there's no way of getting your money back.
 

MattMunson

Master Member
Let me offer the opposite side of this equation as a counterpoint. Imagine a steady stream of customers who at the last minute decide they don't want the item they ordered, and file a paypal claim. Imagine having a ton of customers who just change their mind and decide they dont' want the items that they committed to paying for. That's what they're up against here.

I think there's an argument to be made that asking for payment as friends and family is a red flag, and you can do with that as you will. But for sellers that have been around for years and have sold tons of stuff to happy customers, it's them just protecting themselves against customers that suck.
 

1138sw

Member
Hello I am new to the board so take what you will from my opinion. The money upfront bothers me a little. I don't like paying full outright. I did it once and the product I received was not up to par. It had problems and the seller was not so helpful in dealing with them. I fixed them myself but I said never again will I pay full upfront unless I buy through Ebay or Etsy where I have some protection.

That being said the part where he's asking for the friends and family through PayPal is not cool. He's already asking for the full amount upfront and now he's asking to pay through friends and family?? If you were familiar with the seller sure why not. But you're a newbie so trust and familiarity are an issue here. I would say don't do it.

I had the same problem with a seller once and I just said I wasn't comfortable and he backed off.

If you feel this deal isn't right I would say trust your gut. Trust your instincts. If it's telling you to back off then you should back out.
 
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Alan Castillo

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I see the points of view of both the OP & Matt further up.

As a balance point, you may wish to offer to pay a deposit as friends & family & the balance + shipping as commercial upon completion.

Personally, I would not go beyond that.

And I would only proceed like this if the item in question was one of my most sacred holy grails, otherwise, NEVER friends & family.
 

joberg

Master Member
I see the points of view of both the OP & Matt further up.

As a balance point, you may wish to offer to pay a deposit as friends & family & the balance + shipping as commercial upon completion.

Personally, I would not go beyond that.

And I would only proceed like this if the item in question was one of my most sacred holy grails, otherwise, NEVER friends & family.
I think that this strategy would be a fair compromise for the OP and the seller. If that doesn't stick with the seller; personally, I would walk away.
I understand what Matt is saying concerning a stream of potential buyers having cold feet at the eleventh hour. Sucks for the seller to file all of those PayPal claims...but, that should be part of your business plan AFAIK. ;)
 

JKKS

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Thanks a lot for the feedback and nuance everyone. That’s food for thoughts. I’m gonna give myself a day or two to think about it and will keep you posted. Thanks again.
 

darthwhitey

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I just reached out to them too for info on a Pattinson Cowl. Got back a very short response after a few days with zero details and only prices.

Personally, that "friends and family" thing is nuts. Especially if they're not super well known and don't have a track record with stellar communication.

For me, it sometimes comes down to "how much do you want said product" and are you willing to roll the dice.

Not everyone can be a good business person...I get it...but some of these makers have TERRIBLE communication skills, and as a collector we just have to put up with it I guess.

When I run into a maker that communicates I try and go over and above THANKING them!
 

Chrisrobin1

New Member
Let me offer the opposite side of this equation as a counterpoint. Imagine a steady stream of customers who at the last minute decide they don't want the item they ordered, and file a paypal claim. Imagine having a ton of customers who just change their mind and decide they dont' want the items that they committed to paying for. That's what they're up against here.

I think there's an argument to be made that asking for payment as friends and family is a red flag, and you can do with that as you will. But for sellers that have been around for years and have sold tons of stuff to happy customers, it's them just protecting themselves against customers that suck.
100 percent this.... Not about the fees, this exact thing has happened to many times. Thanks Matt
 

mikekal

New Member
Ok so I’ve been talking with Gc5FX on ig for the last few days trying to order some Batman related stuff from them.
I should start by saying that I’ve never done any business with this seller, I’m not at all questionning their business practices and I am especially not insinuating anything regarding their reputation or reliability but I have to say a couple of things came up during the conversation that kind of raise a red flag for me so I’m looking for advice/feedback from anyone who has done business with them in the past.

First of, they ask for the entire money upfront. With a 14-18 weeks turnaround time I think it’s pretty unusual to not start with a deposit but fair enough. Things got a little weirder when they insisted that I had to pay for international shipping when placing my order (which is quite a bit of money in and of itself). I can understand covering costs and even labor upfront but a service that they’re going to pay 6 months down the line, not so much. Then again maybe they’re just doing this to streamline their ordering process in which case it’s probably easier for them to operate that way and not have to chase people down or wait for shipping but that threw me off a little bit.

Then and more importantly, they repeatedly ask that I pay through Paypal as friends and family. This is something I usually don’t do with sellers I don’t have a history with and given that one of the sellers I had a history with burnt me on these boards I tend to avoid this entirely and send as goods and services and cover the fees. Which I offered to do in this case and they explicitly refused saying that they’ve done business that way for the last three years and it worked out great. That came up 5 times in the 13 messages we exchanged. The insistence with which they made the request along with the fact that it’s a make or break issue for them doesn’t put my mind at ease.

So basically I’m asking if anyone has ever done business with them in the past, how it went, if those requests are at all unusual or par for the course with this seller because right now I don’t really feel comfortable sending money out there not knowing if I’ll ever see the stuff I paid for. I’m reiterating that I’ve never done any business with them and am just asking for feedback.

Thank you in advance for your help
Hey there. I recently ordered some Batman stuff from GC5FX and had a wonderful transaction. At first, I was to a little put off by the "friends and family" PayPal request as everyone says to not do that with people. But he has so many positive reviews from people that I felt it was a business decision from being screwed over in the past. Chris was great with his communication and kept me in the loop all the time with the status of my order. I never once wondered what was going on with it. He is very upfront with the time it takes to make and deliver the item. I even had a small issue with one of the pieces I ordered (Not his fault) and he has been working with me to fix it. Buy with confidence. It is not a scam and he is not trying to screw you over. He makes great stuff and you will get what you pay for. Hope this helps.
 
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TazMan2000

Master Member
Never, ever pay someone for goods or services with friends and family. Zero protection for the buyer. Its also against the PayPal agreement. Try getting your money back after PayPal finds out and shuts their account down.
If you get something damaged in the mail, they are under no obligation to replace it.
To me, if anyone asks for payment in F&F, its a scam. They're either trying to pull the wool over the government's eyes, yours or both. They're already screwing over PayPal. I'm sure they won't have any problem screwing over anyone else.

TazMan2000
 

goldcylon

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
The list of who I send friends and family is a short list. But a few sellers on here have earned it with quality and communication that is second to none. However right off the bat a request like that would put me on alert.
 

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