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Author Topic: Times have changed  (Read 1810 times)
Hobe
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« on: October 04, 2006, 06:40:02 AM »

I have been building coaches for 20 years. It use to be that when some one told me to get them this or that they would pay when it came in, Now they tell you and you never see them again. I have a MCI 9 that I have raised the roof on bought Caps and windows more than 6K and the man has not come around for over a month.When he was here last time I told him to give me a check for the parts. I have never seen him or heard from him. I have a gen set that a man ask me to get close to 6K he has backed out. I have a set of 9 caps that the coach never came. I am sitting on 12K that it will take me years to recope my money from.No more be a nice guy and getting thing cheaper that they can buy it for because I buy lots from the venders. I believe the new people that want to build just have the want no money. This past two years I have been stuck three time. I try to think the best in every one of the people that are bus nut. But it is not that way any more. From now on cash talks. Fred North Florida Bus Conversion
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roadrunnertex
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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2006, 07:01:06 AM »

Times have changed that's for sure.
Some times I say to my self what has gone wrong you can not trust any body any more.
Sad but true.
Like the old saying( In God we trust all others pay cash )
JLV
 
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buswarrior
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2006, 08:12:34 AM »

You have my full support, Fred!

Best guy I know of in the busnut world.

Ok, who needs this stuff Fred has?  Caps and generator shouldn't be too hard to get moved.

Transport shouldn't be that big a challenge. I'll be travelling up and down from Toronto for New Year's, others will be travelling from other points, let's get this stuff moved to new owners!!!

happy coaching!
buswarrior
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H3Jim
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« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2006, 08:38:27 AM »

When I buy stuff, especially big stuff for my coach, I have no problem paying for it when its ordered, and I don't think anyone else would either.  Especially if I can give my charge card number.  It a shame you have to do it, but its just good business anymore.
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Jim Stewart
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Busnut83
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« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2006, 08:43:12 AM »

I am looking for a gen to replace my 4.0 onan,,,,, how about the rear cap for an 83 mc9 njt....

Please email if this is not correct for this board?Huh

mtar49@yahoo.com
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edvanland
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« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2006, 09:05:50 AM »

Sad but true.  The old days of a mans word is his bond no longer exist.  Hope you can move the things you were stuck with.
ED
MCI
And I am still from the old school of my word is my bond, however I also don't have a problem with paying for things I order up front.
Good luck.
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Ed Van
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Cornville, AZ
Brill-o
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« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2006, 09:15:06 AM »

Hello-

I must agree with everything you’ve said- as I’ve seen it many times myself, with businessmen I know.

But I have a different perspective to add-

I work alone.
 I have no one to help me or give a hand when the problem is impossible to accomplish by myself.

Not referring to the “friends” that have failed to show in times of need-- even after numerous promises to do so (I’ve planned my clutch purging for three weeks with one guy--gave up and had another guy just yesterday “guarantee” to show-- and never did…)

But, speaking from too much experience, I’ve found that I’ve had much more problems with business’s planning work or getting parts for me, and not coming through- either in a time frame allotted—or out right never doing it at all.

I almost lost my home from a shop that took 3 months (the best part of the season) to do repairs on my truck- which I was still making healthy monthly payments on. And this was warranty work!

Countless times I’ve had to call a place which forgot to order something I’d asked for- or do work in a timely manner.
They seem to “forget” about you…

Out of sight—out of mind, I guess…

I’ve offered to pay up front to some well established venues, only to get substandard work or much less than I’d paid for and agreed upon.

In the same vein, I’ve waited for overdue work and the bill ends up being twice the specified amount- with nary a call beforehand. In some instances- longer than a year.

I went to a Freightliner dealer for an alignment.
They took an extra 2 weeks to do the job, and broke a switch on my dash.
When I went to retrieve my vehicle, they denied the broken switch, told me they didn’t have the proper technician for the alignment machine to do the work, and wanted to charge me double for what they did--or should I say, didn’t do-

Suffice to say, I begrudgingly paid the bill, and called the bank and stopped payment on the check before I’d left the parking lot.

They called and were extremely angry about it.
I gave them my lawyer’s number and told them to take it up with him-
They wrote me a letter of apology and offered a free service (like I would actually go back to them!).

Yes, I’ve taken a few to court-- which cost me more money and time, and usually the results were less than satisfactory, or never followed through.

I could go on and on with similar stories, but my point is that the business side of the industry is just as bad.

I’ve been taken to the cleaners so many times, that even my socks are starched!

Now, I’m very hesitant to pay up front and need a full receipt for a deposit.
I dread the days I have to go for service work I can’t perform on my own-

Plus if the place looks shabby or anything strikes me as suspicious I ask a lot of questions before committing to work being done there.

It never used to be like this either-
Times indeed, have changed...

This, in no way reflects on your personal business or services-

Cheers-
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kyle4501
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« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2006, 09:50:03 AM »

Hey guys, I've experienced the same.

Fred, it's a shame that anyone would take advantage of you. I wish you well in recouping your investment.

Hey Brillo, you can't always judge a shop by it's looks, I took a car in to get the hail damage repaired at $2500. The shop was very , very clean & organized. But that didn't stop them from doing over $5000 in interior damage  Cry . They kept the car for 3 months too.  (they removed the sunroof & left the car out in the rain. The mold issues didn't show up till much later!)

I like to offer others the benefit of a doubt, but with the cost of things now, that is getting harder to do.
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NCbob
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« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2006, 03:01:32 PM »

Fred, m'friend...please don't place all your judgement of our Community on one jerk! Angry

There are those of us who still feel that our word is our bond, and I happen to be one of them.  Perhaps the 'newbies' don't have the same ethics as we old timers (age wise I'm speaking, now) but no one that I know who is worth his salt would hurt you or Caroline in any way. Smiley

Right now, I'm attempting to call you about the generator you might have for sale as the one in my bus is way too large.  But trust this..... Sad

From out of the past you'll hear the thunderings of the Ol' trusty BusNut aboard the great Bus, "Silver"!  and with a hearty, "Hi Ho Silver, The Lone Ranger will ride Again!  And Faith in our fellow man will return. Grin

with best regards,

NCbob
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jjrbus
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« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2006, 06:22:49 PM »

Hey the guy that is not showing up may be laying on a slab in a meat locker. Even if its your brother for significant amounts of money you gotta get a deposit!! NOw even if Fred can lay claim to this coach it is going to take time and money, unless of couse it was not the persons that brought it to him. I heard a story once of a man with a collision shop who was brought a car to repair. Turns out the car was stolen and rumor had it that someone had did it to pay the shopowner back. He of course could collect nothing.
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JackConrad
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« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2006, 06:36:50 PM »

Fred,
   Sorry to hear about this.  We plan to stop by around the end of October or first of November on our way back to Fl if you will be home.  Jack
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LUKE at US COACH
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« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2006, 06:40:28 PM »

Hi Fred and Folks:

When special, expensive parts and/or components are required to meet a customer's requirements, it is not unreasonable to request payment in advance.  If, after installing, the customer does not pay, then all that is lost is the labor to install.

In Fred's case, and yes I do know him, he is in no position to lose!!!  

I could tell story upon story about having been "HAD"!!!

But I can also tell "more" stories of working with folks and the total business transaction coming to a successful conclusion.

There is no doubt that there are folks who wake up in the A.M. and have no intention of doing "Right"!!!!!

Then there are folks who get in "Over their Head" and do not know how to communicate!!!

And there are folks who become victims of an unforseen situation, from which it takes time to recover and eventually meet their obligation, but may or mkay not know how to comunicate.

But by and large, at 63 years old, it is my experience that the vast majority of folks in this country are fair and intend to do Right!!  It has definately been my experience with Converted Coach Folks, as oppsed to Commercial Bus Operators, which is another story.

For the younger folks reading, please don't give up on your fellow citizen, but make sure to the "Best of your ability" that you are dealing with a reputable vendor in any given situation.
A business referred by a friend, family member, or in this case, a member of the converted coach community will usually  result in a satisfactory business transaction!!!

I Hope this HELPS!!!

Happy & SAFE!!! Bussin' to ALL.

LUKE at US COACH


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« Reply #12 on: October 05, 2006, 02:26:34 AM »

In the boat building industry, where projects tend to be even more involved and expensive and take even longer than bus conversions, they have special contracts between customer and supplier drawn up before work commences. The contracts detail exactly when stage payments are to be made, when ownership of specific components transfers from the company to the customer etc. This obviously protects the supplier from rogue customers, but also gives legal protection for the customer in the case of the company doing the work going bankrupt etc. No matter what payments the customer might already have made, without clear ownership of a part completed boat (or bus), that boat (or bus) would otherwise be seized by liquidators, unpaid suppliers etc.

In the UK the contracts are 'created' by the industry body (the British Marine Federation), and then made available for use by smaller boatbuilders who wouldn't have the know-how or contacts to write their own contracts. There is bound to be something equivalent in the US, so it might be worth Fred doing some research into how other companies protect themselves. You can bet the big names making million-dollar motorhomes don't allow themselves to get screwed.

Jeremy
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« Reply #13 on: October 05, 2006, 03:56:04 AM »

Any work we are to perform or parts we are to provde ... we get it in writing.  In the event we're knee deep into work and need to make course corrections, changes, additions, etc.  We "try" and get a changeorder in writing.  Does it mean we always get the paperwork done?  No, sometimes we get ahead of ourselves.

We've learned that having it in writing is best for "both" parties.  Understanding "expectations" is key these days.  You can explain something verbally until you're blue in the face.  When you do the work, they might expected something different.  By having something well explained on paper, we hope to alleviate any confusion or uncertainty.  Foolproof?  No, but we do our best to C.Y.O.A. (cover your own A*s).

Just my $0.02.  BTW:  I blame the internet on some of the 'non-pay' or people who back out.  You give them a price and then [after] they find other numbers -- maybe less -- than what you quoted.  Mind you, might NOT be the same thing, but now they're rethinking their obligation and might abandon you leaving you holding the bag.  God forbid they'd do their homework BEFORE they commit to you and ask you to order something.

People (in general) are not too caring of others time and resources (financial or otherwise).

Ok, nuff from me.
Jerry H.
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