Paint shop jail! Should I bail?

chevynick1958

New Member
Feb 10, 2022
22
OK, I need some advice. I dropped off my 71 at the paint shop on July 5th of this year. The shop owner and I agreed (on paper) that he would finish final bodywork and paint the car within 60 days. I gave a down payment of $1500 to get things rolling. The remaining $3500 would be due after the job is finished.
Very little has been done to my car. The whole car has been sanded and that's about it. It has been over 90 days and all I get is excuses. It looks like he is having trouble keeping employees and maybe even keeping the doors open. My car is covered in body shop dust inside and out. My interior is brand new and now covered in thick dust. The engine is also covered in dust. They pulled the rear windshield off for paint and did not bother to cover it. Only one employee remains and is doing all the shop work.
My worry is that his shop is going under and that I will show up one day to find the place permanently locked and closed and my car will be trapped in red tape and court cases.
Should I just cut my losses and go get my car? Do I trust that he will finish the job? I check on the car twice a week and I get stories about how they are "about to start working on it" but that never happens. The owner is a poor communicator who avoids me and is never at the shop. He is going through a divorce and I'm worried that my car is just not a priority anymore (if it ever was).
I understand that I am getting a good price on the work and I understand that some people wait much longer to get their cars back but I don't want to ignore red flags that can be trouble if I wait. I have heard horror stories about cars getting stripped for parts and cars getting stolen or sold...
What should I do?
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You need to go in and have a heart to heart with him, talk about the original agreement, tell him you realize he's having some problems, nail him down on how long it will take him, offer to help, then say if you can't do it I need to take it somewhere else
 

bondora68

Veteran Member
Dec 14, 2014
622
Mobile, AL
I'm a long way from being any type of paint and body expert - but I'd think a couple good days work and that machine would be out in the sun waiting on you to come and get it. Or maybe I'm not seeing the hidden bad parts?
The only "bad parts" are the rear quarters where the vinyl top was...It has some pitting. could be knocked out in a couple of days.
 

TTR230

Veteran Member
Aug 1, 2020
676
Burlington, Ontario
Get it out of there. Even if he actually gets around to painting it, it's going to be a terrible job. Guaranteed. Cut your losses and take him to small.claims. you probably won't get anywhere, but you never know.
 

TTR230

Veteran Member
Aug 1, 2020
676
Burlington, Ontario
I don't want to keep beating a dead horse here, but I've been around a few business like this, and businesses like this are always a day away from a bailiff padlocking the front door. Picking up your car now may be a hassle, and a bit awkward, but picking up your car after the door has been padlocked is a ton of hassle. You have to prove you own every piece of glass and trim. I don't know how you do that.

The only person in this thread that's seen the sights and smelled the smells of this situation is you, so if you're satisfied that these guys are on the up and up, that's all that counts, but if he's too busy to call you back because of this and that, he's way too busy to paint your car.
 




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