Cross Honors Lifetime Warranty, Repairs Priceless Antique Pen

Andy always carries his father’s old 50-year-old Cross pen. It’s the only everyday item he has that belonged to his father, and he was devastated when it broke. He contacted Cross to see about getting the pen repaired, and the company sent it back: the same pen, good as new, in a spiffy little case.

When my father retired he gave me his gold Cross pen. He bought it sometime in the mid 1960’s and I’ve had it since 1984. It lives in my messenger bag and I rarely use it. But it’s always with me. Recently, I needed to write a note and grabbed the pen from my bag. It was broken. The very top part fell off and I found it lying in the bottom of my bag. I was devastated.

I checked the Cross website and noticed that they have a lifetime warranty for all their products. I sent it back to back to Cross and asked that it be repaired rather than replaced since it’s the only tangible item that I have that belonged to my father. Look what came via UPS today.

It’s all better now. They even sent it back in its own case. They could have replaced it with a current model, but that wouldn’t have been the same… to me. Thank you Cross.

Comments

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  1. Jerkamie says:

    I would have lost that pen 49 and a half years ago.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      If mine lived in my messanger bag like the OP’s did, it would be covered in pencil lead bits, lint, and fruit juice residue. And it’d be broken, too.

    • Damocles57 says:

      Which is why your father would not have given you his pen.

  2. jo3lr0ck5 says:

    Awesome! Company standing behind their product…more companies should be like this.

    • Randell says:

      Yes, Bic should do this too, so when you buy a 10 pack for $5 it is the same as buying a $50 or higher Cross or Mont Blanc pen. I would prefer to pay a lower price of say $10 for the pen, and end up buying a new one after 50 years. The value to the OP is not in the pen anyway.

      • Coelacanth says:

        Not to mention, if you get a high quality pen (especially a fountain pen), the ink refills are often cheaper over time than having to buy a bunch of disposable pens…

        • BHall says:

          I see a box of BIC® Round Stic® Ballpoint Pens, Medium Point, Blue, 60/Box sells for $5.99. Assuming that each pen only lasts 2 months thats 10 YEARS of writing per box. I have had one of these pens in my checkbook for at least 10 years and it still works. A cheap $30 fountain pen by itself equals 50 years of disposable pens, then add on the ink bottles you have to buy and the laws of physics will have changed by the time you close that gap.

  3. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    Well, if I didn’t love Parker Jotter pens, I would go with a cross, because they seem to have as good a warranty+repair service as Zippo does.

  4. salviati says:

    So I guess Cross went above and beyond here. If this pen was his late father’s, then I guess the ‘lifetime warranty’ had expired.

    • mr91mr says:

      A lifetime warranty refers to the lifetime of the product, not the consumer.

    • Tim says:

      The post never said that his father is dead. Just retired.

      Beyond that though, maybe “lifetime warranty” referred to the life of the pen.

      • AnthonyC says:

        which, with a lifetime warranty, is how long, exactly?

        I ask in all seriousness, since I just bought some cookware with a lifetime warranty and was wondering what that meant.

        • Aaron Poehler says:

          Come on, man.

          • nbs2 says:

            I’m curious too. What is lifetime? Is it the life of the original buyer, the current owner, some sort of reasonable period, the life of the company, what?

            How is that not a reasonable question?

      • salviati says:

        From the article:

        “It’s the only everyday item he has that belonged to his father, and he was devastated when it broke.”

        I’m pretty sure if his father were still alive, his son wouldn’t be so attached to this item, or ‘devastated’ if it were broken. Also notice the past tense used.

      • Andy S. says:

        Yes, my father is dead. He died in 1984 just a couple months after he retired and the day before my wedding reception. (wife and I eloped in Las Vegas. Her grandmother threw the party two months after we were married.)

        What’s that adage? May you lead an interesting life.

    • Weekilter says:

      If that was supposed to be funny it missed its mark by a long shot.

    • rockasocky says:

      In your defense, I wondered the exact same thing.

  5. leprechaunshawn says:

    It’s a sad state we live in when a company doing what a company promised they would is considered newsworthy. Too bad more companies don’t operate like this.

    • shamowfski says:

      IMO, this is above and beyond because the lifetime warranty expired with the life of the owner.

      • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

        Lifetime of the product, IMO.

        • salviati says:

          So when do you think the ‘lifetime’ of a product would end? 100 years? 1000?

          • Balaenoptera says:

            Whenever the company goes out of business or the owner stops caring enough to get it repaired.

          • chiieddy says:

            For LL Bean it’s if the product were damaged by neglect. For example, they’ll happily fix zippers and buttons off a 20 year old coat (okay it was actually only 15 years old) but can not repair it if moths got to it. I’ve actually had my winter coat from LL Bean since 1993, and I still wear it every year.

        • coren says:

          In a way that makes sense, in a way that doesn’t. When is the end of life for a product – when it breaks?

          • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

            Yes, actually. You then replace it. It’s like a Zippo. Zippo’s warranty isn’t based on who owns it. It’s the lighter. If it breaks, they fix it. I buy old Zippo lighters, and if I sent one back, they will fix it, replace the insert, and mail the lighter w/new insert and the old insert back to me.

            • Tim says:

              So when is a product actually dead? If you buy a Zippo and it breaks, some might say it’s dead. But they replace it … and then it’s not the same lighter anymore. So really, the lifetime of the product ended when it broke.

              • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

                You didn’t read. Zippo repairs their lighters as much as they can before replacing them. So you get the repaired lighter back, a new insert, and your old insert. Even if they do replace it, that lighter ALSO has a lifetime warranty.

            • coren says:

              The way you describe it, not that I’m against this at all, but wouldn’t you end up with an infinitely replaced product? Either it gets replaced, or you get a new one with the same guarantee?

        • Supes says:

          Life of the product doesn’t really make sense, unless they intended the warranty to continue forever (theoretically).

          Good for Cross. I don’t believe they had any obligation to fix this pen, but did anyway.

        • peebozi says:

          as soon as it breaks the life of the product is over therefore they no longer have to honor their warranty? LOL…dat’s a gud von.

      • Tim says:

        The post never said the life of the owner is over. Read it again.

  6. JF says:

    Wow, that was very cool of Cross to do.

  7. peebozi says:

    without the invisible hand of the free market this problem would not have been resolved.

  8. HalOfBorg says:

    I have a silver “Liberty” dollar coin that my grandfather used to carry. It’s so worn you can JUST tell what it is. I loved him – and it, and carried it everywhere.

    Then one day it was gone. I was very upset. I tore everyplace apart, and at last found it in the car, beside the driver’s seat. Must have rolled out of my pocket.

    I know he’d rather I carry it, but I’d rather not lose it (I know me). It now lives, safe at home.

  9. Nighthawke says:

    http://www.cross.com/customerservice/warranty.aspx?cat_name=warranty

    If you read on their warranties page, it’s a perpetual lifetime on the body of their pens and mechanical pencils, exception being the expendable components (erasers, ink cartridges and leads), a one year leather warranty, and a one year warranty on time pieces.

    Cross is the Cadillac of pens and pencils. They are more a status symbol than anything else.

    • Fubish says: I don't know anything about it, but it seems to me... says:

      No – Cross makes just a decent pen. A “Cadillac” or status symbol of a pen would be a Mont Blanc or Pelikan.

  10. technoluster says:

    I have recently been thinking about getting a nice pen to keep in my bag. Something about it just seems cool to me. Guess which brand just got bumped to the top of my list? (For the slow: Cross)

  11. greeneyedguru says:

    It’s amazing what you can do when you sell a $5 item for $300.

  12. brinks says:

    After all the Best Buy, Comcast, and Verizon stories on here, it makes me happy to know that some people still know how to please the customer. If I was responsible enough to own nice things, I’d buy a Cross pen because of this.

  13. silas says:

    Mom & Dad’s Cross Pens from the late forties have yet to fail.
    Heirloom is correct.

  14. mmcnary says:

    I always make it a point to look through the box-o-pens at any garage sales or flea markets I find myself near. I’ve sent pens and pencils back to cross and gotten them repaired or replaced severa’ times. Mind you, I usually just find the standard chrome ones, but hey, they work very well and I’ve never had to send one back twice.

  15. asamtoy says:

    I bent a Cross fountain pen recently. They sent me a brand new one as a courtesy. Cross is fantastic!