I have seen prior postings on this company now I'd like to add my two cents about Model T haven. A friend of mine bought a vehicle from Mark before so I trusted his views on Model T Haven will that was my first mistake. first off the vehicle pictures where not accurate at all well maybe five years ago. I was told the floor boards wheren't bad "your not going to fall thru them,was Marks commit. well is that because of all the plywood. The entire left side was gone and the left side had a large HOLE as well. The vehicle had been stripped from what was in the picture,the gauges gone,the mag wheels gone. The vehicle was infested with rodent nest and as well as smelled of rodent urine. The passenger seat was rusted thru layingon the floor board. The latest after numerous phone calls and e-mails requesting a title is there is no title or the title is lost.but if they had the vehicle there they could get one,ok my thought is the vehicle was there prior to my dumb $#% buying it. Why was that not addressed then or even at the time of purchase? Thats odd the listing stated clear title. Model T advises that the vehicle belong to someone else and everything is this other unknown persons fault.My thought is if I where to advertise something I'm going to make sure everything is on the up and up. Mark offered to hook me up with a lead on another vehicle same year make and model that he came in contact with. He did send me some pics of siad vehicle then I never heard another word from him.I wouldn't recommend MODEL T Haven to my worst enemy.
I bought a '16 Roadster off Ebay from Mark at Model T Haven. Went after it with my open trailer(mistake). My first impression was leave it, mark the $500.00 deposit as experence, and leave without the car. But I didn't. About 25 miles from Iola, I stopped to check the tie down straps, I noticed the door had blown off. I flipped a coin to decide if it was worth turning around and look for it or just go on home. I decided it wasn't worth looking for it and went on home. About the only thing I did with it was to put Christmas lights on it. Finally sold it to a guy down the road for less than I paid not including my round trip of 1200 miles.
The thing that gets me about his site is that if you look at the other cars listed, he wants about what they're worth. There's a couple of 30's model Chevy's that are going for under $3,000 that are in FAR better shape than the T's he has listed. He's got a 300% markup on some of the listings, one of which would take more than double the buying amount to restore.
Has anyone ever had any good dealings with him?
Robert, there are several posts recently. For some of them, click on
I thought I remembered seeing them, this thread has the same title so I thought I was dreaming again.
He listed "A good usable set of Halk (sic) wire wheels" on Ebay. $2400.
I was dumb enough to buy them for my speedster.
He could have researched the maker like I did (Simplex).
The hubs were worn from being loose, one ran out about an inch, Sandblasted and found some pretty deep pits under the crud.
Had to respoke one.
I emailed him and said I wanted my money back....no response.
Needless to say I wouldn't recommend him.
Like many things in life when different people look at the same thing some will swear by them and some will swear at them and most folks don’t have an opinion because they haven’t dealt with that issue or it isn’t something they are concerned about etc. . The link posted above and reposted here has a listing of very favorable remarks for Mark and Model T Haven (http://www.mtfca.com/discus/messages/118802/150156.html ) And of course in my own dealings with Mark I would be much closer to the “swear-by-them” side while the current thread is definitely started off more on the “swear-at-them” side. And both views can be helpful as we can all learn from others experiences and not have to make all the mistakes ourselves. Just like reading on the forum about “Don’t crank the Model T engine with the spark lever pulled way down.” I can learn about that first hand. And in my case it was scary for me – and even as young teenager I suddenly realized “I wasn’t bullet proof.” To this day I have a very healthy respect for making sure the spark it properly retarded. For those of you who have never forgotten to retard the spark properly before you hand crank your T, you can learn from what happened to some of us and you won’t have to experience it first hand yourself. [not Model T related but I like the summary in
Justin Moore song “How I got to be this way.” at http://www.cmt.com/videos/justin-moore/535603/how-i-got-to-be-this-way.jhtml -- and yes there is always some advertisement first – that is what pays for the song/video. Also a little more “rocky than I like” but still a good summary of how we can learn from experience – and yes they were all true for him.]
Bill – it appears this is your first posting – so welcome aboard. Sorry things have started out “rougher” than you expected. I’m sure you will be able to figure out a workable solution. And for Dick – thanks for all your support as you have been posting for some time now. [And as I check back – others have added – thank you also – but I’ll leave it addressed to Bill and Dick or I’ll never get it finished.] It is hard to comment when we don’t know more of the facts, emotions, and background. So feel free to make any corrections you want. First I believe one of the most important things is to get to a point where you can move on. In Dick’s case – he sold the car and that is behind him so he can go on and enjoy the hobby. In your case Bill – it sounds like you are at the beginning of things and you are still working through to find a good solution for you. Just out of curiosity – you mentioned “mag wheel” which would lead me to think you were not dealing with a stock Model T. Not that it matters that much – I’m just curios.
In both cases I would suspect part of the issue is that the photographs can never really adequately replace actual hands on inspection of the car or part. They either look better than the car or in some cases worse than the actual car or part looks. But they seldom communicate as well as actually seeing and even being able to touch the item for yourself. And no photograph that I know of will communicate what the car smells like - good or bad. And then we also have an ability to think about something and make it much better or worse than it actually is. For example, I spent a year in Iceland with the military. They didn’t have a Burger King there. One of the things I was looking forward to when I returned to the USA was a “whopper.” After landing and driving a short distance away from the airport my year long dream was about to come true. I pulled in and ordered the “whopper, fries, and chocolate milkshake.” And boy was I disappointed. Of course – it was a sample size of only one. So maybe it was just that franchise in that location that was bad. The next day driving further south I stopped for lunch and I was pumped. I again ordered the “whopper” I had been waiting a year for. And again I was really disappointed. And I guess over that year of wanting and remembering how much I like the “whopper” it had become better than grilled T-bone steak. Further stops confirmed the truth. It was a good burger but not nearly as good as I somehow had thought it was.
What has that got to do with your cars? Well, if you are like me, there is a good chance that what you thought you saw in the photos was actually better than what you would have seen in person. Not because the photos had been touched up (if they had been deliberately photo-shopped – you could probably make a case for fraud) but they look better because our minds tend to fill in what we want to see or hear. Which also is why you may not even like this posting – it probably isn’t what you want to read – although I hope you still find it of some use to you.
Some additional information that may help put it in better perspective would be: For Dick – was there another e-bay bidder who was willing to pay one bid less than you for the same car? And when you sold the car (now missing the door skin) but transported to possibly a better or worse market, did you receive at least 75% of what you paid for the car (not including transportation costs etc). If so – that would tend to support that the Model T Haven sales price was a high retail but still within reason. As pointed out in the posting referenced above – any business has to make a profit or they cannot stay in business very long. And for retail sales that means they have to sell the items for more than they pay for them.
Bill, in the case of the “title” not being available. If it was advertised as having a title and if it does not have a title, I believe you should be able to return the car (assuming you have not taken things apart etc.) and that it has not already been six months etc. If you paid for the car without seeing the title then it gets a little more sticky – but still should be able to be worked out. Of course it never is just a simple action – as it sound like you may have had the car delivered and/or gone and picked up the car. In my own case I learned the hard way as a teenager not to pay / purchase a car until I could verify that the title was clear and that it matched the number on the car. Would I purchase one without a clear title today? Yes, but only if I really wanted that car enough that I thought the car was worth the extra work and expense and risk (i.e. if the seller doesn’t have a title, it is possible that someone else may be the legal owner of the car and may have a title for that vehicle.) But in general I would not recommend anyone purchase a car unless the seller has a valid title. If you are purchasing the parts for another restoration – then the title is not nearly as important – but if you want to title that vehicle – depending on the state you are in it can be easy or a real effort involved. If you live in one of those easier to obtain a title states – you have a lot more options than someone in one of the more restrictive states.
And finally we all have to deal with a common issue of “buyer’s remorse.” See the Wikipedia summary at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buyer's_remorse . Some recommended ways to deal with that issue illustrated using less costly items is discussed at: http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-shopping-deals/2010/08/18/oops-i-did-it-again-buyer s-remorse-and-what-to-do-about-it/
So what are some things I learned or had reinforced again from this posting?
1. When at all possible inspect the item before purchasing.
1.a. Many sellers are willing to allow someone to come and look at a product before they purchase it. For those that are not willing to allow that I need to decide based on the information available (our forum, e-bay feed back, etc) if I am willing to risk losing my money or part of my money. And for used Model T Parts that are not yet rebuilt, the engine may run fine today and may fall apart tomorrow – until it is inspected we don’t know what condition the engine is in. (Sometimes you come out ahead on that – Trent Boggess found a counter balance crankshaft in the Model N Ford that he purchased. Neither he nor the seller had opened the crankcase so neither one new what was really in there. It could have also be “junk” neither knew for sure until it was inspected. My own experience has been it is more often worn out than in good shape – unless it has been rebuilt.)
1.b. Sometimes the cost of going to view an items exceeds the cost of purchasing it etc. Then hopefully I can find someone who is closer and familiar with Model Ts to take a look at the car for me.
1.c. I can make my offer contingent on inspecting the item at pickup and deciding then if it is acceptable to me. (Some sellers will and others will not agree to that condition – but it give you a better understanding of where the seller is coming from.)
2. If it is not possible for me to inspect the item I need to determine if I have the available funds to “loose” if it is not as advertised or not delivered. In general I would rather pay a little more and be able to see the item before I purchase it. Note for our many vendors such as Lang’s Snyders, etc. I will routinely order parts and not worry about it – they have proven track records and also I charge the items and can go through my credit card company to reverse the charges if the parts never show up etc.
3. When possible I need to ask for some inputs from others before making purchases. I need to do some comparison shopping. For example in my own case I spent 15 years looking for an appropriate rear seat section to fit on the back of my 1915 Model T cut off. When one became available that could be shipped (some were available but shipping was not offered), I had a good feel for what it was worth to me. And I was very happy with what I purchased from Model T haven that day. Could I sell it for what I paid for it – probably not. I paid a high retail price for the part I really wanted. I still have that rear seat section and if someone offered me three times what I paid for it I would not sell it – because it is the part I need (ok – part I want a lot). But if I put it on e-bay it probably would only bring 50 to 75% of what I paid for it and maybe not that much depending on who was looking for that part when it was advertised etc. Not to mention I would be a new seller without a track record rather than one with a well established feedback rating etc.
4. And I want to work with others to help promote our hobby. And if things have changed significantly with Model T Haven – then I would like to know and I would hope it could be discussed with Mark and favorably resolved. Or if I have overly optimistic expectations of getting a lot of half-priced bargains from Model T Haven I hope I can adjust my expectations to understand his prices are intentionally higher than the swap meets etc.
5. When I am not satisfied with a transaction, I need to work to resolve it. Hopefully with the person who sold me the part. But if not – reference the ways to deal with it link also posted above which was: : http://blogs.ajc.com/atlanta-shopping-deals/2010/08/18/oops-i-did-it-again-buyer s-remorse-and-what-to-do-about-it/ and in some cases other recourse (small claims etc. if appropriate). But I believe it is important for me not to let what someone else has done or not done cause me to loose the enjoyment of sharing our hobby and tours with others. Life is way too short for me to become bitter – it can just destroy me – and I don’t have to let that happen.
6. And I need to take some lessons to learn how to writer shorter postings.
Hap l9l5 Model T Ford touring cut off and made into a pickup truck and l907 Model S Runabout. Sumter SC.
Well all I can say is that Mark has always done me right, that dude has tons and tons and tons of parts and knows his sh*t about T's. I can't add anything negative to this about him. I actually will be ordering some more parts later this week from him.
Nice Sermon Hap, no offence, but it seems to me what you said is common sence. I never form an opinion based on someone else's experiance, unless I "know" both sides of the story, not that I doubt the one telling their side of a story, I just know from experiance that there is always two sides to a story.
To me it's the buyers choice to compare what was told against what they see. If things are not as represented they can ask about the differences and then either buy the item, or not based on their oberservation. Nobody has a gun to their head, so why blame the seller for their own mistake if they think it was.
Don't pay without looking at the item, if you can't get someone close who can, then pay upon inspection and pickup. If you choose to have it shipped without looking at it then it's at your own risk.
My number one rule, get everthing in writing on the bill of sale, both parties sign it so there is no dispute later.
Hap, I don't mind the length of your postings. I find you often a calm voice in the storm of arguments on this forum, and an insightful gentleman. I value your opinions, and look forward to your posts.
Sorry if I came off as a real basher of T Haven. It's just I've dealt with places that sell sub par items that try to pawn them off on the unsuspecting. Mind you, it is up to the individual to do their own homework, but it still irks me to no end.
I had mentioned before that I am a Civil War reenactor, and I've devoted many many years to uniform research and I can tell you that there are those that make the absolute cheapest and low quality junk that good money can buy. And there are some that make really good stuff that will cost you an arm a leg and your first born child. There are some people out there that are generous enough to make quality uniforms at a more than fair price considering the effort it takes to make one. But, for every one of those, there are ten more making shoddy equipment that are looking for a sucker and I've seen people blow thousands on stuff I wouldn't let my dog wear.
That being said, I'm always hesitant when it comes to a vendor I'm not familiar with, and I'm not familiar with the proprietor of T Haven, but I have checked his site often over the past several years. I honestly believe he's more interested in selling parts than cars which would explain the markup on whole cars. There's nothing wrong with that, and I'm not saying that's what he's doing. But to an unexperienced person, they may actually think they're getting a good deal when they could have found a car in roughly the same shape at a much better price. There's actually quite a few cars listed at absolute steal prices on his website, but there are a few that whoever buys them needs to really think twice before making the jump.
I totally agree with everything Hap has said, and I think the best thing any one person can do before making the commitment is to do the research. Post on the forums and see if others are with you on the deal, or if you need to look elsewhere. I can't tell you the number of people I've seen that have made impulse buys that have come back to bite them in the tailpipe.
Phone/Net/Photograph used part sales can be a disappointment. You can't see it all. But if you're going to pick it up in person I'm afraid I can't say I feel for you. It's your dough, hold or fold. You took a ride expecting more but it's junk, leave it there.
I've bought parts from Mark with no issues (note the key word) ((Parts)) I hate to see anyone get burned on an old car but Mark post a very good selection of pic's of each car he has for sale I've looked at severial of them myself, It's very easy to spot that 70% of his T's are a mixed bag of T parts bolted and screwed together but they are also very complete, I think his prices reflect that as well his $2000-$3000 dollar T's are just about that 2K-3K cars I wouldn't expect any more than what's in the photo. 1st mistake never "never" buy any T site-un-seen the camera does wonders for them, always go look save your deposit.