Upholsterer has my seat - unresponsive

BluegrassDan

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Howdy everyone,

A little over a year ago, a neighbor up the road, who is an upholsterer, saw me working on my 67 Newport and offered to do the interior for me. We agreed on a price, I gave him $600 to start ordering materials, and a couple weeks later he removed and took my rear seat, headliner, and a few other fabric samples.

Around last May or June was the last time we talked. I was priming the interior and fixing stuff in order to ready it. To be honest, I've not been in a hurry.

Now, I find that his upholstery shop is closed down and no business phone numbers work. I haven't seen him driving by by house in several months. I left a friendly note in his mailbox to call me last week. Silence. Driving by his house, I can see that someone is living there and there is some movement.

A Google search indicates that he was arrested for "failure to appear" back in 2019, but nothing since. His business has horrible reviews online.

Now, I'm in a situation where I just want my seat back. I know I'll never see the $600, but DANG those seats are hard to find.

Anyone have any advice?
 

Big_John

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Did you knock on the door?

Send a registered, signature required letter if that fails.

Step after that is small claims court.
 

Mopars & Missiles

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Google searches are most helpful prior to money/parts changing hands. (You asked for advice, that's mine.)
 

BluegrassDan

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Well, he’s been my neighbor for almost 20 years. He and his dad used to do beautiful work - his dad had a 1966 Belvedere that he redid back to factory specs.

Both his dad and wife died recently and it sounds like he’s in a bad place. Totally didn’t see this coming.
 

stubs300

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Have you talked to the county Sheriff about this to press charges against them?? I would! Good Luck
 

Samplingman

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Knock on the door, poke around the shop outside, the seats might be somewhere accessible or at least maybe you could spot them through a window.
 

Mopars & Missiles

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Well, he’s been my neighbor for almost 20 years. He and his dad used to do beautiful work - his dad had a 1966 Belvedere that he redid back to factory specs.

Both his dad and wife died recently and it sounds like he’s in a bad place. Totally didn’t see this coming.
From your first post it didn't seem like you "knew him" that well and he was more of a casual acquaintance. Since you have such a long history with the guy, you shouldn't have as much trouble resolving this. Hope you get your seats back.
 

Snotty

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Sorry, but I think he saw you coming and got your 500 bucks. Good luck retrieving it, and your stuff.
 

Rustyrodknocker

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Probably drug related. I say take somebody with you if you go there. The seats are probably still in the shop.

If you are in a low population county the sheriff may be able to assist in the recovery.

Common story among multigenerational family business.

There is an an upholstery shop here that people seem to be satisfied with.
They have had major busts where the state police set up tents and bring out the mobile headquarters
Same story the son is a drug abuser and a thief.

One time he was stealing stuff out of the state fairgrounds after several hauls it got light out as he was trying to get a generator over the fence.

That triggered the second raid of his parents property.
 

BluegrassDan

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I got em back.

Went down to see the county sheriff, who recommended I call 911 and request a property recovery. Two cars and three deputies showed up. We went up to the guy's house and got the seats, headliner and bows back.

Couldn't stomach trying to replace all this stuff.

Photo Mar 14, 4 23 05 PM.jpg
 

Samplingman

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Did they break down the door, or was someone home? Forget the upolsery shop, order the covers and buns and do it yourself, it's not that hard.
 
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