This product is poorly constructed and the instructions are severely lacking. First, I realize that this is not a high end piece so I''m not asking for it to be perfect, or luxurious, or indestructible, but it fails in even being of reasonable quality. Here are the pros,...
This product is poorly constructed and the instructions are severely lacking. First, I realize that this is not a high end piece so I''m not asking for it to be perfect, or luxurious, or indestructible, but it fails in even being of reasonable quality. Here are the pros, the cons, and the narrative.
First, the packaging is fine. It''s mostly flat panels and is packed as well as can be expected. Please note that at no time during the assembly did I use any power tools. I only used a hand held screwdriver. At first glance the instructions seems straight forward and easy. They are mostly a breakdown of the parts list and pictorials for the assembly steps. The problems start in step one. Here you are told to attach the shelf fronts to the shelves themselves. It explains that you will need three (3) cam locks and three (3) corresponding cam pins, but then the picture shows only two (2) shelves being assembled. It took me a minute to figure out that they just forgot to illustrate that you are assembling three shelves. I was looking for which shelf was supposed to have the additional cam pin/lock. Not a significant issue, we move on. Then you are asked to attach the shelves you just put together to the back panel. This one is a bit more tricky because the back panel has one end that is finished with a strip veneer and the opposite end is unfinished and has three (3) bores for cam locks in the face of it. Unfortunately the illustration does not indicate the cam lock, nor the finished end so that you know which way to orient the shelves (which will be top shelf and which will be bottom shelf and whether the face of the shelves with the cam locks in them should face toward or away from the cam locks on the panel that they are being attached to). This led to having to disassemble the shelves a second time later in the process when it becomes clear which end is which.
The next area of concern is more critical. That is of the cam locks in particular. The cam pins screw into a threaded nylon plug. It looks like a recessed bushing that has been threaded. That part is concerning because when "locked" into place there will be a fair amount of stress being placed on a small piece of nylon (plastic) that was already turning in it''s hole when I was attaching the pins. Next, the cam locks appear to be fairly standard. They look like the kind you get with the typical Ikea, Sauder, etc.. type of assemble it yourself products, but it becomes quickly apparent that these locks are of significantly lower quality. They are made of aluminum that is not all that much stronger than tin foil. I had four (4) of them break into pieces when trying to lock them to the pins. They broke under only the pressure I could generate with my index and middle finger and my thumb on the end of the screw driver. I used this grip because the cam locks were next to adjacent panels and did not allow for a full hand grip. Now, I''m an office worker and while I am not exactly weak, I''m certainly not winning any strength competitions either. You can decide for yourself how much torque you imagine I was generating on these to cause them to fail and snap into pieces. After this I needed to make strategic decisions on which cam locks could be left out until replacements were obtained just so that I could get the thing standing and not strewn about the house in half-done sections. I will say that the threaded metal parts are pretty sturdy and so I was able to connect those pieces together without issue using the included allen wrench. I cannot say if the company has the parts to send to me or if they will send them if they have them. If not I will try to buy some cam locks if I can determine the size. So if you decide to purchase this set, please either be prepared to get replacement cam locks before you try putting it together, prepare to be EXTREMELY light with your touch on the ones they send, or be prepared to throw away the item after you cannot get it put together completely.