I posted the video on every Maaco facebook page I could find and encourage everyone else using facebook to do so. The other franchisee owners can put pressure on Corporate to force this location to do the right thing and/or pull the franchise. FYI, the corporate franchiser for Maaco also franchises Merlin and Meinke remember that when deciding where to get work done.
If someone could get an email address for the corporate complaint person I bet a lot of us would be willing to send an email of protest.
Got a reply from MAACO ... I sent them the video
quote From: firstname.lastname@example.org To: Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2014 08:55:33 -0400 Subject: RE: You should look at this video on YOUTUBE MAACO in trouble
Good Morning Danyel,
Thank you for contacting us. We have been notified about the situation and appreciate your email.
Thanks and have a great day!
You asked for an e-mail address at corporate? Looks like Danyel has found one that is viable. I think we need to encourage Ms Betsy McDonald to do the right thing. Please write politely but firmly. Remind her of the power of social media and its influence on both current and potential customers. They need to fix this.
I am flying down Andrew (1984WhiteSC ) from Minneapolis to visit the beginning of November. Sort of a "working vacation". He will be here a week, and we will work on the car a couple of those days. In preparation, today I ordered 2 of every rubber bushing for the front and rear of the car. We will also be doing a grand am brake swap + the S-10 Brake Booster upgrade The brake swap should take no time, as I purchased another Fiero that has the swap completed already. It also has the braided lines on all 4 courners instead of the rubber. It should be a nice bolt on replacement.
On top of that, here are the suspension parts I have already, (minus the shocks for the front that I already installed.)
[This message has been edited by JohnWPB (edited 09-30-2014).]
Andrew on an airplane? Encouraged by John? I am worried. Based upon photographic evidence from this years caravan to Frazee someone needs to tell Andrew to leave the flying to the pilot and keep the windows of the plane closed.
A Fiero with "wings" on its way to Frazee.....Wheeeeeeeee!
I received my door panels a couple days ago from the Fiero Store, and I have to say I am impressed with the sturdiness of them. The Fiero Store had donated a set for the Daytona Show to be raffled away, but in all the chaos of the show, I did not really get a good chance to look them over or review them. The panels are made of what appears to be a solid ABS plastic, and are quite thick, and do not bend at all, just the way you would want them to be, nice and solid!
I am eventually going to upholster the door panels, but wanted to test fit everything before doing so.
I have a set of Polk Audio speakers that I bought quite a few years ago to go in my Eclipse, before I totaled it. When I was looking at the Fiero Store panels, I remembered I had those speakers, and dug them out of the back of the closet, thinking I had a fat chance of them being the right size. Low and behold, they are 6.5" speakers. Next, I thought they still will probably not work, as the panels require a shallow mount speaker, 2" depth. Again, I was shocked to find that the speakers I had, once again, were the correct size!
Anyhow, here is a look at the back of the panel, with the "Christmas Tree" fasteners in place. They are supplied with the panels.
I put the door panel in the door, and everything fit into place easily. The panel lines up perfectly around the door, and all the clips pushed in easily. Placing the arm rest and door handle / lock mechanism lined up and installed easily as well.
Overall I am very happy with the thickness, quality, and fitment of the panels. This is a great item that fixes a known problem with the Fiero, where to put decent speakers! Kudos to the Fiero Store for making these available!
I will post more pictures here when I get the panels upholstered and completed.
I dropped the door panels off at a local upholsterer, and they should be done on Tuesday.
Tonight I started tinkering with the CarPC. I originally had a small form factor PC that I was going to use, and install behind the passenger seat. It would require that PC and a separate touch screen and a VGA cable run to the dash. I decided to go with a Slate PC instead. The one I have runs the full version of Windows 8.1. On top of that, with Blue Stack software, I can also run android app's as well. It seems like the perfect solution...... it's got an 11.2 inch screen, and it's less than half an inch thick. I picked it up on eBay for $240 some time ago. It is going to be built into the custom center console when all is said and done.
I did the first preliminary test of it being controlled by the steering wheel controls. Here is a short video of the first test with the steering wheel controls:
[This message has been edited by JohnWPB (edited 10-10-2014).]
I also found the material that I had purchased some time ago to put into the front bumper for the grill. I attached the Fiero emblem, that I also bought some time ago, to the grill using 2 part epoxy. The more I work on the car, the more little things I keep finding that I had gathered to put the car together!
This is what it looks like from the front, with the epoxy all hardened and ready to install:
Finally, here is the grill installed, with the Fiero logo in the center:
[This message has been edited by JohnWPB (edited 10-11-2014).]
I was supposed to pick up my upholstered Fiero Store speaker door panels today. When I called at 3pm he said he got the material delivered late, so looks like tomorow.
I tried something different, and really hope that it works. I gave him black microfiber cloth to do the door uppers, and the bottoms are going to be done in the same blue vinyl to match the Mr. Mike's seats. I went with the microfiber, as I think it will dampen the cabin noise a bit. I put it on my headliner, and notice a huge difference. I am going to do it on the waterfall behind the seats as well. As for the door tops, it will be soft and cooler to put my arm on when driving, vs sticking to vinyl / plastic.
I am dying to see what they look like with the speakers installed in them, and mounted on the doors!
Andrew is down from Minneapolis, and we are replacing all of the front suspension. The Fiero that I purcahses a couple weeks ago for parts, has a brand new 4 wheel brake upgrade on it! New Grand Am slotted and drilled rotors and calipers on the front, and slotted and drilled on the rear. It also has stainless steel brake lines, as well as front and rear sway bars. Needless to say it is all being swapped onto my car.
Pressing out the bearings and sleeves proved to be a ROYAL pain! I had to take the upper and lower control arms to a machine shop to get them to do it. It took us over an hour to get one of the sleeves out, and I was not about to do that 7 more times for just the front control arms alone! The rubber bushing is no problem, the sleeve is next to impossible!
Andrew (on the right) and Dean working on getting one of the bushings and sleeves out:
Andrew is here through Wednesday night, and then heads back to what looks like 8"-10" of snow on the ground, and -6 low on Friday
Hi, John! Great work on the build! Any progress with the legal proceeding?
I am still working to settle this out of court with MAACO, but have just about given up with the route that it is going. I am ready to go down and file the paperwork and have the owner and manager served and start the whole process
It was a very, VERY busy weekend here! Too much so to even post much! A few months ago I had gotten a killer deal online to fly Andrew down from Minneapolis. (Can you say under $200!) He agreed to come down and help get the entire front of my car updated. In exchange a free trip to Florida (78 degrees instead of 30 ) including meals, room and board. The schedule was pretty tight as he was here from Saturday morning thru Wednesday night.
It was made worse by the fact that I ordered all the parts needed ahead of time, and in the process they gave me the wrong lower control arm bushings. That cost us a half of days lost work. I went back, upset of course and they re-ordered new ones, but would not be here till 3Pm the following day. at 3:00 PM, when we got there, they were WRONG AGAIN! They actually came out of state, so I could not even drive a few hours to go get them, so that cost us yet another day! Other than that, things went fairly well.
I was able to purchase a parts car for $400. I needed the gauge cluster, as the circuit board on my cluster was so bad the traces were all loose and shorting out. I also needed the ECM, and the throttle body, as the spring on mine was shot. When I got those and a few other little parts, I would call a local scrapper that will come pick the car up and pay $400 for it. Basically breaking even.
The previous owner had a shop remove the valve covers and replaced the manifold gaskets, and some other upper engine work. When he picked up the car, and was driving it home, about 5 miles away from the shop, the engine started making a horrible noise, and he turned around and drove the car back to the shop. When they removed the oil pan to investigate, there was sand in the oil. He seemed to think it got in there when they were working on the car and it ruined the main bearing. The shop would never own up to it, and the car has sat since that day with a cover over it in his yard. Very bad for the previous owner, however it was a major break for me! It basically means that all of the parts installed on the car, have under 20 miles on them! This was easily verified with the mileage on the original invoices (I have all of the receipts for the work done on the car, dates and mileage) Not to mention what looks like zero wear on the brake pads, and the overall condition of the parts, even though it has been sitting outside covered for a few years.
HERE is where my luck had changed for the better for once!
The previous owner had all of work done to the car at the same time the engine was worked on. The invoice I have here shows $2,042.96 in labor for the below work
That comes out to a whopping $1,291.55 worth of upgrades for a $400 car, that I will be paid back $300 ~ $400 when they come haul it away for me! Now to some pictures. A few days before Andrew got here, I was touching up areas on the front of the car. I removed the cowl screen, and sanded and painted to protect it from rusting:
After the masking was removed:
One of the small things the donor car had, that mine did not, a jack. It was in fairly bad shape, typical rust and peeling/faded sticker. After some sanding, painting, and one of my reproduction stickers, not too bad!
Installing the S-10 brake booster was FAR easier than I thought it would be. Using a small sledge hammer, it was fairly easy to "persuade" the inner fender to accommodate the new much larger booster. Start to finish, probably an hour job.
Here are the Grand AM brake calipers, Brackets all painted up and ready to install. Stainless Steel brake lines and the new front Sway Bar also in the picture. I did not get a chance to paint the Sway bar.
Andrew installing the Spindle and putting everything back together:
After we bolted everything back up, and went to install the Grand AM brake calipers. It was then we realized the rotor was rubbing and a tiny bit needed to be ground off of the caliper bracket. The rotor was rubbing:
After putting everything back together, and bleeding the brakes we took it for a test drive. There is still air in the system, and we did not have time to go back and bleed it again, as he had to get to the airport in just a few hours.
All in all it was a great few days, and got a LOT accomplished, all with Andrews help. One thing I HATE about taking the pictures, is the fact that I am always behind the camera, and it looks like I did nothing LOL! Grant it, Andrew did a LOT more work that I did, but trust me, I was right in there as well! ,
[This message has been edited by JohnWPB (edited 11-15-2014).]
I'd like to see it in Frazee. I sent an e-mail to your friends at MAACO the other day, to email@example.com, an address Daniel found and had received a response. Just a follow up question about what had they done to correct this appalling situation. My question bounced back as undeliverable; the mail box was full. Maybe Betsy is on vacation?? In Palm Beach?? Or not.
Ok, I have some news that is probably going to stir up some comments for sure...... here goes:
I am taking my car back to Maaco to have it repainted. (Catch your breath, I'll wait.... )
Ok, I know it sounds crazy, and it could possibly be. This will the the 3rd time for them to paint my car. Now to explain a little.
First, I have spoken with an attorney, and it will cost around $10,000 to $15,000 to hire an attorney to take on my case. This is just the initial fee's (retainer), and not taking the case to fruition. Attorneys do not do this type of lawsuit on a contingency bases, that is pretty much for wrongful injury cases. So that money would come 100% out of pocket, and I simply do not have $15,000 laying around to hand to a lawyer. The total fee's for an attorney would be $25,000 and up for a case that went to trial. In that trial I am looking to get around $10,000 in damages. As you can see this makes no sense what so ever. Spend potentially $30,000 to get $10,000 to $15,000 in a settlement? Nope.....
Secondly, I can take them to small claims court, and have filled out all of the paperwork already. The most I can get in the state of Florida through small claims court is $5,000. To have the car prepped and re-painted correctly would cost FAR more that that.
So, this is where I arrived at allowing them to repaint the car.
I met with the owner of the shop in his office for a little over an hour today, and we went over everything. From the way he spoke, and telling me of a few emails he has received from corporate, I think they are breathing down his neck so to speak. It is obvious that corporate is absolutely watching to see how this turns out. In the meeting, we had a very nice conversation, and covered everything pertaining to prep such as having the windshield removed, all markers, molding, mirrors and much more. We agreed to have them have paperwork drawn up that I would have them sign detailing each and every thing to be done, and paperwork drawn up that I would sign as well. In that paperwork will be the fully detailed list of what will be done to the car, step by step. They agreed that I should again have full access to stop in at any time while they are working on the car to inspect their work and progress. I in turn agreed to change my Google review to a positive one, pull down the YouTube video, and not "bad mouth" their shop in the future. This is all based on if the car comes out as they have detailed to me when it is finished.
The car will then, from the day I get it back, have the full 5 year warranty. They asked for me to drop the car off on December 1st and give them 1.5 weeks, with a hard and absolute time of 2 weeks to have the car complete and ready for me to pick up.
They have agreed to sand the car completely down to the gel coat where applicable, and to the composite material also where applicable, and repaint the car with a show car quality paint job. He said after the car is painted, they would wet sand, and finish it with a full 4 coats of their highest quality clear. When that cures, I am to return to have the car cut & buffed.
I still have recourse, as if this time it is not done as planned, I still have legal recourse. I will not sign anything taking that right away from me.
I have a friend on the forum CaptnDean that lives near me that is coming over to go over the car with me, and details of what to have done and how. He is also going to have access to the car and monitor the work and progress while it is as the shop. I consider him to be a qualified Fiero Expert. He has collected, bought, sold, repaired, and stripped far more Fieros than I have probably ever seen in person!
This decision I have thought long and hard on, and have deemed to be the best course of action after weighing all the options. Please take that into consideration if you are thinking on trying to change my mind when you post
Also keep in mind, I have not wanted to make any money in court on this, or see someone lose their business even. I still just want what I have wanted all along, the paint job that I paid for, done correctly. Nothing more. If they can do this, then I will be happy.
Fingers crossed...we all make mistakes. Hopefully they have learned from theirs and truly want to right a wrong. I would take out your "important items" such as your Mr Mikes or anything else which could get overspray on them. By the way, I am not mad about you giving them a shot. It is a good thing to let them try to right it!!!
[This message has been edited by johnyrottin (edited 11-17-2014).]
I agree Johnnny..... it just makes me a tiny bit more apprehensive when this is their 3rd chance LOL! We did have a very good, calm discussion, and they do seem to have a clear plan and priority for the car this time. They have had pressure from corporate, and now know just how many people have been watching to see the outcome of this. (Forum, Facebook, Word of mouth, Review sites) At one point the manager pointed out to the owner something about if I wanted it done the way I was saying it would cost them a lot and something about tons of labor hours. The owner looked right at him and said "I Don't care, that is how it is going to be done". That put me at rest a little, as it seemed quite genuine
I KNOW the owner wants this nightmare to go away just as bad as I do. And the way to do that is for them to dot it right, and I thing he really gets that now, and is exactly what he appears to be willing to do.
As for the interior...... I am actually going to wrap / tape / cover EVERYTHING in the interior. I do not want to have to do things a 3rd time! I just got the instrument cluster from a parts car and finally have working gauges again. On top of that I have installed the Fiero Store Speaker Door Panels. So yea, I will be taking extreme care to protect the interior this time. Talking to Dean, his advice was to just go ahead and remove the rocker panels and give them to them to put on the tree and paint. This way the door should never be open for any of the painting. I will have the sunroof out, as I need to remove the tracks. I will fashion something to fit from the inside, and mask off well to seal it 100%.
I am just not looking forward to taking the car apart a third time all the body moldings, mirrors, quarter windows, markers, parking lights, reflectors, sunroof tracks, GT emblem, tail lights, headlight doors, the GT quarter window frames, cowl, spoiler, (Black plastic behind the quarter windows, whatever that is called ) I have done this twice already, and put it all back twice...... argh.....
... I in turn agreed to change my Google review to a positive one, pull down the YouTube video, and not "bad mouth" their shop in the future. ..
That will work for one person only, you. This will not do anything to the past and all that other people have seen here. We got an amazing story to tell even if Cliff decides to remove this thread. Still good luck to you. Seems the "manager" maybe your biggest problem there. I would watch him very closely as he is not agreeing with his boss and may not have his values. Employees like that will undermine his boss/company any time they can.
Good luck John, It would be great to see a good ending to all your hard work and frustration. I have to agree about the shop manger not being on the same page as the owner on course of action to make this car what you wanted the first time. Keep in eye on him for sure! I guess the fact you have access to the shop at all times should keep him in check. Hope to see another beautiful Fiero in the end.
[This message has been edited by davylong86 (edited 11-18-2014).]
Lots of good advice and now that the owner is involved I would expect better results. How often does the owner visit his own shop? Maybe get his cell phone number and during the two weeks that shop has your car, make a joint visit or three to check on progress and quality in addition to the other drop ins you're going to make.