I'd like to take the opportunity to clarify something, as it was I who first posted about a faulty Sontaran helmet on Gallifrey Base.
Said helmet was purchased at the FP Shaftesbury Avenue store - nothing to do with FPI.... when I returned home and discovered the problem I emailed FP.com but received no response. I then contacted FPI to see if their batch of sets had the same problem. I sent a photo of the "faulty" helmet and received a reply that this was common to all sets as they were mass-produced items. Having seen examples in much better condition on the forums, I checked with other members on GB and none of them seemed to have examples with a large chunk missing, just a small blip at the mould join, so I contacted FPI once more.
It was at this stage that I was told, in writing, that all the good sets had been allocated to customers ordering early and who had requested mint examples, and all the remaining sets were (their words not mine) "faulty" or "had paint bleeds or scratches."
Now I'd like to point out that I wasn't being particularly pushy, I wasn't trying to return anything or get any sort of refund. I was merely trying to find out where I could purchase a set to the same standard as those which had already appeared on the forums - without a chunk missing out of the side. It seemed odd to me that FPI staff should describe their stock as "faulty" and appear to try to disuade me from ordering from them....? In my frustration I, perhaps illadvisedly, reported FPI's response on the GB forum. I realise now that I should have been a little more careful in editing their email before posting. I'm very sorry if this caused the staff member concerned to become upset.
However, if the comment was, as has been described, a little white lie to placate a customer, it seems a very odd position to take and a rather unprofessional one - telling your customer all the stock you have is faulty! A brief comment along the lines of "this is what we have, they all have a small imperfection in the moulding but not a lump missing like the one in the photo" would have sufficed...
(As Kenny later acknowledged, there did seem to be a problem with the set I purchased and in his opinion it would have been classed as a production flaw. Had FP.com offered better customer service and replied to my original email, I might not have even contacted FPI to try to obtain a second set. As it was, I wanted a second 4th Doc for customising to the correct costume and I'd thought well if buying two sets means I get at least one decent helmet, what the hell!)
Anyway, I hope this clears up any confusion as to what happened on the GB forum. I don't believe I was being a "difficult customer" in requesting a set to the same standard as those received by other FPI customers.
To Mr Fusion, I'd just like to add - just received Revelation set (from FP.com) and Genesis (from FPI). Quite a chunk out of Necros Dalek dome (the sort of thing you'd get if you hit it hard with a screwdriver) and bent eyestalk on grey dalek in same set..... Genesis set is better with only misaligned neck bins on one dalek and sloppy painting on eyestalks. Genesis I will keep and try to realign neck bins (though have tried this before and couldn't get screws undone on base of dalek). Revelation will go back as although I can probably fix the eyestalk there's nothing I can do about the missing plastic on the dome.... a friend has now agreed to try and pick one up in store without any problems and send it to me....
If the neck bin problem is as easy to fix as you say however .... why don't they get it right in the first place?