VWVortex.com - Another trailer mishap.
Username or Email Address
Do you already have an account?
Forgot your password?
  • Log in or Sign up

    VWVortex


    The Car Lounge
    Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
    Results 1 to 25 of 37

    Thread: Another trailer mishap.

    1. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-15-2020 11:13 PM #1
      Some people have friends, and then there are friends. About 15 years ago my wife had quit being a college professor and went back to school, again, for another degree. This time it was in American Sign Language. We actually started off together in an Adult Ed. course and I quickly fell by the wayside. My wife was looking for a refresher course after getting a degree when she met Dot and Gary. Gary learned sigh language so he can communicate with Dot, but she doesn't sign back. Makes my wife and Gary crazy, Dot turned out to be a Besty when my wife was stricken with cancer 10 years ago. Dot was there for us when we needed her. Gary was always willing to help. We've had a long-lasting relationship.

      They set me pictures last week. In a recent storm they got a call that everyone in their summer campground heard the crack and then ran to see this tree firmly planted on their trailer. I've been a trailer go-to guy for a while so they sent me pictures. They thought that the trailer wasn't very badly damaged, but the insurance company totaled it and gave them less than $20,000 as it couldn't be fixed for that. They really wanted to have it fixed, so I advised them to get bids from local repair facilities. I told them it could be salvaged if they got enough money. I advised Dot and Gary they they had the potential of buying the trailer back from the insurance company at salvage cost making our friends responsible for any additional expense. They found a value in keeping the 8 years old trailer.

      I really was totally surprised when they suggested that I do it. I must have secretly wanted them to ask, but I did try and steer them away. They were at my shop and followed Tom's Spartan trailer build on my FB page.

      Fortunately for them, the tree was a hollowed out hulk that did little damage compared to what a live tree or a light pole can do. if this was a live tree it would have cleaved off that side of the trailer and I wouldn't be writing this. We have a meeting of the minds and they are making arrangements to have it brought to me. Gary has agreed to be my socially-distant helper. We're both very careful. I normally work alone, but it will be nice to work with a friend.





      Last edited by barry2952; 09-15-2020 at 11:18 PM.

    2. Remove Advertisements

      Advertisements
       

    3. Member Bad Rabbit Habit's Avatar
      Join Date
      May 5th, 2005
      Location
      Manteca, CA
      Posts
      3,919
      Vehicles
      A Rabbit with a snail.
      09-15-2020 11:35 PM #2
      Always in for a Barry Build thread. Interested to see how modern trailer repair goes. Hearsay is they are disposable, but I know better than to under estimate you.
      -Jon
      ig:badrabbithabit Formerly known as: monoaural

    4. Member ch.davis's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 26th, 2016
      Location
      Monaco/Philadelphia/Bogota
      Posts
      199
      Vehicles
      20 Tesla Model 3 Performance, 13 RRS Supercharged, 08 Ferrari F430, 07 Touareg V10, 19 Volvo S60
      09-15-2020 11:36 PM #3
      Doesn't look too bad if I'm honest. Should be an enjoyable project

    5. Senior Member
      Join Date
      Nov 7th, 2001
      Location
      The Village
      Posts
      25,726
      Vehicles
      KAR 120C
      09-16-2020 01:29 AM #4
      YES! Barry back and doing what he does best. I can’t wait.

    6. Member Baltimoron's Avatar
      Join Date
      Oct 9th, 2001
      Location
      Trailer Park Heaven, MD
      Posts
      4,439
      Vehicles
      2013 Conestoga Wagon & 2023 VigorousZX Campermobile
      09-16-2020 07:23 AM #5
      That is such a bummer, after following your trailer builds I'm interested to see how you'll tackle it.

      I found some humor that the tree at least left a post-it note with its contact and insurance info:

      "Sorry I fell on your trailer, here's my phone number and Geico policy"

    7. Member Stromaluski's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 15th, 2005
      Location
      Greenville, SC
      Posts
      3,376
      Vehicles
      '67 Deluxe Bus, '80 Rabbit Truck, '92 Corrado, '01 S8, '13 CC
      09-16-2020 09:36 AM #6
      Definitely in for the updates.

    8. Member GLI Dan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 28th, 2006
      Location
      South Florida
      Posts
      5,872
      Vehicles
      '16 F82 Krautrocket
      09-16-2020 10:10 AM #7
      As a total aside, the trailer/camper market is one of the most disgusting markets I've ever witnessed/read about rife with shady salesmen taking advantage of would-be buyers with finance and option packages that put them in the red immediately; all too often of the elderly looking to make their road trip retirement dreams come true. how there hasn't been a Supersize Me style documentary and/or Anchorman type satirical comedy of these jack wagons is beyond me.

      I hope the repairs go smoothly and turn out great. Good luck.
      Quote Originally Posted by DzlDub View Post
      Cars are ****ing awesome, anyone who doesn't want a car is a communist.
      Disclaimer: Generally, I strongly dislike people.
      Current: 2016 BMW M4
      Prior Vehicles: '18 Infiniti Q50RS l '13 E92 335i M-Sport l '04 E46 330ci SMG l '04 MKIV GLI 1.8t 6spd

    9. Member
      Join Date
      Dec 2nd, 2010
      Posts
      2,007
      09-16-2020 10:14 AM #8
      They should consider suing the campground for negligence. That tree could have easily landed on one of them. It's standing dead, it should have been cleared from an occupied area a long time ago.

    10. Member GLI Dan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 28th, 2006
      Location
      South Florida
      Posts
      5,872
      Vehicles
      '16 F82 Krautrocket
      09-16-2020 10:22 AM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by Aseras View Post
      They should consider suing the campground for negligence. That tree could have easily landed on one of them. It's standing dead, it should have been cleared from an occupied area a long time ago.
      Honestly worth a shot given the circumstances.
      Quote Originally Posted by DzlDub View Post
      Cars are ****ing awesome, anyone who doesn't want a car is a communist.
      Disclaimer: Generally, I strongly dislike people.
      Current: 2016 BMW M4
      Prior Vehicles: '18 Infiniti Q50RS l '13 E92 335i M-Sport l '04 E46 330ci SMG l '04 MKIV GLI 1.8t 6spd

    11. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-16-2020 10:43 AM #10
      Quote Originally Posted by Aseras View Post
      They should consider suing the campground for negligence. That tree could have easily landed on one of them. It's standing dead, it should have been cleared from an occupied area a long time ago.
      Actually, I believe that would fall under assumed risk, like going to a baseball game and getting hit by a ball or bat. If you accept an insurance settlement you really have no case on property damage. You've been made whole to the extent that you accepted the settlement. If the insurance company sees negligence on the part of the park owner the company would go after them to be compensated for the damages. That's called subrogation. If the insurance company wins they are supposed to return your deductible.

      Now, if a trailer owner notifies the park owner of a hazard and they fail to mitigate the potential damages they could be held negligent and their insurance would cover the loss. I've asked them keep the insurance on the trailer while it's here as I have "care and custody" of the trailer making me liable in the event of a fire, flood or other disasters.

      Dot and Gary have agreed to my terms and are making arrangements to have it moved here.

      Thought I was too old for this. I guess not.

    12. Member ch.davis's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 26th, 2016
      Location
      Monaco/Philadelphia/Bogota
      Posts
      199
      Vehicles
      20 Tesla Model 3 Performance, 13 RRS Supercharged, 08 Ferrari F430, 07 Touareg V10, 19 Volvo S60
      09-16-2020 11:03 AM #11
      Quote Originally Posted by Aseras View Post
      They should consider suing the campground for negligence. That tree could have easily landed on one of them. It's standing dead, it should have been cleared from an occupied area a long time ago.
      A fallen tree is an act of God, basically. The insurance of whichever asset sustained damage would be liability, pretty much regardless of any circumstances.

      Plus, they already accepted a settlement - so the timing doesn't work anymore even if they had a valid claim.

    13. Member GLI Dan's Avatar
      Join Date
      Sep 28th, 2006
      Location
      South Florida
      Posts
      5,872
      Vehicles
      '16 F82 Krautrocket
      09-16-2020 01:55 PM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by barry2952 View Post
      Actually, I believe that would fall under assumed risk, like going to a baseball game and getting hit by a ball or bat. If you accept an insurance settlement you really have no case on property damage. You've been made whole to the extent that you accepted the settlement. If the insurance company sees negligence on the part of the park owner the company would go after them to be compensated for the damages. That's called subrogation. If the insurance company wins they are supposed to return your deductible.

      Now, if a trailer owner notifies the park owner of a hazard and they fail to mitigate the potential damages they could be held negligent and their insurance would cover the loss. I've asked them keep the insurance on the trailer while it's here as I have "care and custody" of the trailer making me liable in the event of a fire, flood or other disasters.

      Dot and Gary have agreed to my terms and are making arrangements to have it moved here.

      Thought I was too old for this. I guess not.
      Quote Originally Posted by ch.davis View Post
      A fallen tree is an act of God, basically. The insurance of whichever asset sustained damage would be liability, pretty much regardless of any circumstances.

      Plus, they already accepted a settlement - so the timing doesn't work anymore even if they had a valid claim.
      That is how you think it would work, how it should reasonably work. I can tell you, at least in FL/CA and other high liability/litigious states, that is not how it works. Property owner has a duty to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition, the details of which will vary on use/location. If, as initially stated, this is a clearly dead tree, which clearly poses a potential danger of falling, the property owner has a duty to rectify the danger, warn of the danger, etc. in which case, he didn't because he allowed an invitee to the property to park in a place where the danger could cause harm. My guess is a well worded letter forcing the property owner to put his insurance carrier on notice will net at least a few thousand just to make it go away. Whether there is a viable claim for full damage worth pursuing depends on many more variables that are unknown, nor appropriate to be vetted in this medium.
      Quote Originally Posted by DzlDub View Post
      Cars are ****ing awesome, anyone who doesn't want a car is a communist.
      Disclaimer: Generally, I strongly dislike people.
      Current: 2016 BMW M4
      Prior Vehicles: '18 Infiniti Q50RS l '13 E92 335i M-Sport l '04 E46 330ci SMG l '04 MKIV GLI 1.8t 6spd

    14. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-16-2020 09:52 PM #13
      Quote Originally Posted by GLI Dan View Post
      As a total aside, the trailer/camper market is one of the most disgusting markets I've ever witnessed/read about rife with shady salesmen taking advantage of would-be buyers with finance and option packages that put them in the red immediately; all too often of the elderly looking to make their road trip retirement dreams come true. how there hasn't been a Supersize Me style documentary and/or Anchorman type satirical comedy of these jack wagons is beyond me.

      I hope the repairs go smoothly and turn out great. Good luck.
      The people that summer in this community are not what I picture as trailer park people. These are getaway homes for people that like sitting around the community hot tub in the woods, drinking wine. The whole idea of a summer home or a getaway is totally foreign to me, but it's obviously popular. I find it strange because Dot and Gary have a beautiful home in the woods with a hot tub, and plenty of friends and wine.

      When I was a kid we lived near a trailer park. It was one of the oldest housing areas in the city and it built up around the park. It was a seedy and dangerous place. I had a friend that lived there. His home life led me to appreciate mine. The whole trailer park industry changed over the last 20 years. Many of the mom and pop operations have been bought up and run for maximum profit, leaving people literally out in the streets. Park trailers do suffer from the abuse you speak of. People buy a home; but never own the land its on. The depreciate as if they were cardboard boxes left in the rain. Selling a home is always a beating and if the neighborhood changes and you want to move your home it usually cost more to move the trailer han it's worth so they get abandoned, the locks get changed and the parks rent them out after quit-claiming the structure. Nasty business, indeed.



      Perceptions. When Gary sent me pictures I saw this and saw a small room with a low ceiling. I could tell that it was the corner that was crushed, but something bugged me about the photo.

      To me it looks like a finish storage room with a raised floor, like there was storage underneath. I perceived the ares to be about 4 feet wide and 4 feet tall. Wouldn't you?



      Here's the reality. A vey small space for this big body.


    15. Member tip's Avatar
      Join Date
      Aug 7th, 2008
      Location
      South Puget Sound
      Posts
      1,452
      Vehicles
      mk4 GTI, F350, RD1 CRV
      09-17-2020 09:10 AM #14
      So in
      @saugster_pnw

    16. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-17-2020 09:12 AM #15
      Quote Originally Posted by Baltimoron View Post
      That is such a bummer, after following your trailer builds I'm interested to see how you'll tackle it.

      I found some humor that the tree at least left a post-it note with its contact and insurance info:

      "Sorry I fell on your trailer, here's my phone number and Geico policy"
      LOL!

    17. Member
      Join Date
      Feb 8th, 2002
      Location
      Lincoln, NE
      Posts
      2,695
      Vehicles
      1966 Corvair | 2010 Mazda5 | 2002 Chevy 2500HD | 2017 Locost 7 | Many Subarus
      09-17-2020 10:25 AM #16
      Excited to see you work in a "new medium", Barry.
      Quote Originally Posted by sosumi on the B6 S4 V8
      It sounds like a giant shotgun and then like a bunch of ground up Yugo's in a cement mixer followed by weeks of silence interspersed by wails from the owner.

    18. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-17-2020 10:51 AM #17
      Quote Originally Posted by ArmenB View Post
      Excited to see you work in a "new medium", Barry.
      There is nothing new under the Sun. Modified, but nothing new.

      However, this is about the coolest tool for this kind of use. I wish these existed in 2006, when I built mine. I had Tom buy one and he kept it, so Gary id buying one for the project.


    19. Member 2 doors's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 18th, 2003
      Location
      Baltimore, MD
      Posts
      5,886
      Vehicles
      '19 Accord EX Hybrid, '16 e-Golf SE, '04 Sequoia SR5
      09-17-2020 12:47 PM #18
      Quote Originally Posted by GLI Dan View Post
      As a total aside, the trailer/camper market is one of the most disgusting markets I've ever witnessed/read about rife with shady salesmen taking advantage of would-be buyers with finance and option packages that put them in the red immediately; all too often of the elderly looking to make their road trip retirement dreams come true. how there hasn't been a Supersize Me style documentary and/or Anchorman type satirical comedy of these jack wagons is beyond me.

      I hope the repairs go smoothly and turn out great. Good luck.
      The thing that really bugs me about the camper market is the absolute crap quality of the construction. These are made from cheap particle board, thin laminate, and a sprinkling of aluminum all held together with staples and glue.

      Quote Originally Posted by barry2952 View Post

      Oh, it looks like I left styrofoam off my list. Frankly I'm amazed this withstood the tree as well as it did. Hitting on a corner certainly helped. I'm curious to see what this looks like once Barry tears into it.

    20. Member Baltimoron's Avatar
      Join Date
      Oct 9th, 2001
      Location
      Trailer Park Heaven, MD
      Posts
      4,439
      Vehicles
      2013 Conestoga Wagon & 2023 VigorousZX Campermobile
      09-17-2020 04:09 PM #19
      Quote Originally Posted by 2 doors View Post
      The thing that really bugs me about the camper market is the absolute crap quality of the construction. These are made from cheap particle board, thin laminate, and a sprinkling of aluminum all held together with staples and glue.
      Oh, it looks like I left styrofoam off my list. Frankly I'm amazed this withstood the tree as well as it did. Hitting on a corner certainly helped. I'm curious to see what this looks like once Barry tears into it.
      It's all about making these things as light as possible to open up towing options to CUVs and light trucks. The entire running gear on the non-fifth wheel trailers are really chintzy and it's pretty scary when you think about how many of these things are on the road every summer. My neighbor just picked up an 18ft trailer he'll be pulling with his Tacoma and it's so flimsy and light I feel like I could either run through the wall like the Kool-Aid man or tip it over.

    21. Member
      Join Date
      Dec 2nd, 2010
      Posts
      2,007
      09-17-2020 08:43 PM #20
      Quote Originally Posted by 2 doors View Post
      The thing that really bugs me about the camper market is the absolute crap quality of the construction. These are made from cheap particle board, thin laminate, and a sprinkling of aluminum all held together with staples and glue.

      Oh, it looks like I left styrofoam off my list. Frankly I'm amazed this withstood the tree as well as it did. Hitting on a corner certainly helped. I'm curious to see what this looks like once Barry tears into it.
      My RV is fiberglass gelcoat over styrofoam. There's steel for the actual framing. But the walls are literally the cheapest wood paneling, styrofoam, tyvek, foil, styrofoam and fiberglass/gelcoat. I made one hatch 2" bigger, absolutely insane how flimsy the thing is. You could cut a door sized hole in an rv in seconds, or just bash it in with a hammer. no sledge required.

    22. Senior Member Iroczgirl's Avatar
      Join Date
      Feb 17th, 2007
      Location
      Bend, OR
      Posts
      34,109
      Vehicles
      Hot hatchback coupé heaven
      09-17-2020 09:38 PM #21
      Quote Originally Posted by Aseras View Post
      My RV is fiberglass gelcoat over styrofoam. There's steel for the actual framing. But the walls are literally the cheapest wood paneling, styrofoam, tyvek, foil, styrofoam and fiberglass/gelcoat. I made one hatch 2" bigger, absolutely insane how flimsy the thing is. You could cut a door sized hole in an rv in seconds, or just bash it in with a hammer. no sledge required.
      All the more reason not to buy one.
      Lots of VW stuff|Rare Scirocco parts!
      The family: 1955 Customline 351C | 1970 TR6 262Olds | 1977 Capri Cologne | 1980 Rabbit AAZ | 1984 C30 350 | 1988 Scirocco 9A | 1988 Scirocco LP7Y | 1992 Pickup 22RE | 1997 D21 KA24E | 2000 Grand Marquis Modular
      Quote Originally Posted by Crimping Is Easy View Post
      You're always better off with a Citroën.™

    23. Member
      Join Date
      Dec 2nd, 2010
      Posts
      2,007
      09-17-2020 10:11 PM #22
      Quote Originally Posted by Iroczgirl View Post
      All the more reason not to buy one.
      You need one if you are going to travel with 9 or more dogs.

      https://forums.vwvortex.com/showthre...#post113222583

    24. Member ch.davis's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 26th, 2016
      Location
      Monaco/Philadelphia/Bogota
      Posts
      199
      Vehicles
      20 Tesla Model 3 Performance, 13 RRS Supercharged, 08 Ferrari F430, 07 Touareg V10, 19 Volvo S60
      09-17-2020 11:11 PM #23
      Quote Originally Posted by GLI Dan View Post
      That is how you think it would work, how it should reasonably work. I can tell you, at least in FL/CA and other high liability/litigious states, that is not how it works. Property owner has a duty to maintain the property in a reasonably safe condition, the details of which will vary on use/location. If, as initially stated, this is a clearly dead tree, which clearly poses a potential danger of falling, the property owner has a duty to rectify the danger, warn of the danger, etc. in which case, he didn't because he allowed an invitee to the property to park in a place where the danger could cause harm. My guess is a well worded letter forcing the property owner to put his insurance carrier on notice will net at least a few thousand just to make it go away. Whether there is a viable claim for full damage worth pursuing depends on many more variables that are unknown, nor appropriate to be vetted in this medium.
      I forgot that it's possible that neither they nor their neighbors own the land on which the trailers are located. That's a little different, you're right. A commercial policy would definitely pay out something on this, and the property owner shouldn't have any reason to hesitate to inform his insurer that he received service.

      Whether it's worth it to these people, is really more of a personality thing.

    25. Geriatric Member BRealistic's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 16th, 2005
      Location
      East-10EC
      Posts
      81,851
      Vehicles
      2018 F150
      09-18-2020 08:01 AM #24
      Lucky it hit right on that box corner.
      If it had hit further in it could have really squashed the trailer.
      Vehicles owned (*=automatic):
      Chevy: 82 Cavalier Type 10, 94 Cavalier Coupe* | Chrysler: 96 Town & Country* | Ford: 73 F100, 88 F150, 18 F150* | Jeep: 78 CJ-5 | Mazdas: 83 GLC, 85 RX7 GS, 86 323, 90 323, 90 B2600i, 92 Miata, 97 Protege, 01 B2300, 01 B3000, 04 RX8 | Nissan: 90 240SX SE | Plymouth: 88 Caravan* | Pontiac: 84 Grand Prix* | Toyota: 84 Celica GTS, 02 Tundra*

    26. Member barry2952's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 13th, 2007
      Location
      Farmington Hills, MI
      Posts
      18,548
      09-18-2020 09:43 AM #25
      Many of you weren't around in 2006 when I built my trailer. I believe I signed up here in 2007.

      I went to a huge AACA meet, not to see the vintage cars, but to see what these million dollar cars were being towed around in. They were all big white boxes, some with graphics. Boring.

      I bought a 1951 Royal Spartanette. Considered the "Cadillac" of silver torpedos. A politician that lived in Elgin Illinois needed some money and I needed a specific trailer that I could turn into a toy hauler. The trailer was 35 feet, overall, including the stubby tongue. I believe I might have been the first to convert an aluminum trailer into a toy box. I had seen school busses and commercial trailers, but never a '50s trailer park queen. As is the way I do things I put my plan to paper, bought the trailer, gave a 20 x 60 stall in my building a paint job, epoxy floor, good lighting and air conditioning. The trailer arrived and I nearly died from inhaling some kind of mouse piss that made me quite ill. I learned my lesson. That stalled the tear-out for about two weeks. I gutted the trailer and gave away or threw away all the built in furniture paneling and stripped the plumbing, heating and electrical. I stripped it to the bare studs and was horrified to find that in 1951, for a period they substituted wood studs and rafter for nicely made aluminum stampings used before and after 1951. They hadn't taken into account that the moisture of the wood coupled with steel screws holding the aluminum to the wood studs the steel screws had melted away, along with the surrounding aluminum. It had turned to chalk. Apparently there was no thought given to dissimilar metals. I'm surprised it made it to my shop from Illinois without the body falling off. My first major task was to raise the body off the flimsy chassis about 8 feet off the ground. I did that using 6 come-alongs hung from the ceiling, two clicks at a time. There it sat while I made a totally modern, incredibly strong chassis and suspension for it. I sistered new 6" x 2" 1/4" wall tubing frame rails to the existing chassis and created a tongue almost 18" longer. I added 3 Dexter 8,000# axles with torque-flex suspension and airbags. The original suspension was 2 3,500# axles for a 6,800# trailer. By the time I was done the trailer weighed 10,200# empty.

      That all being said, I crashed it on the maiden voyage. I loaded the Porsche too close to he rear, even though the scale said I had it right. I didn't know it, but I had set up a pendulum effect by not thinking about the mass of the engine. Everything went to hell in just a moment's time when the poorly-made weight-equalizing hitch came apart, leaving one side hooked up. We flopped around like a fish out of water with the trailer wagging across 3 lanes of traffic standing my F-450 on two tires causing it to nearly tip. I managed to stop the whipping but ended up headed for a ravine. I whipped the wheel and hit the guard rail with the truck and then the trailer. I hugged it until we came to rest. The 2" square hitch stinger was bent like it was tubing. The tongue was bent. The Porsche had smashed against the inside of the trailer and suffered a busted suspension and a flat side. The guard rail saved the Porsche from coming out of the trailer. I changed hitch stingers and drove it home without mishap.

      Here's where the story thickens. I had just secured insurance on the trailer. I had it valued at $100,000. I had $85,000 in material alone. The premium was $777.00. We hadn't received the bill yet when I crashed. I sent photos to the insurance company and they determined hat I needed a specialized adjuster that dealt with aircraft and the trailers made of aluminum. I met with the guy, and for once in my life, I kept my mouth shut and let him do his thing. He said he needed to get an air frame mechanic involved and I really had to bite my lip, as I knew what needed to be done, and I sure didn't need his services, and after chatting with the guy I'm surprised his head fit through the door. Damn, I thought I had a big ego! After enduring the tag team I felt something was up. It's not like a trailer can fall from the sky.

      After two weeks I called the insurance company asking why there was a delay. They were told it was a very complicated estimate, but they had just received it and only asked where I wanted to take it for repairs so they could issue a joint check. I told them to just make the check to me. They balked and I took a stand. I won. It appears they had no right to restrict me from making the repairs. I could almost hear the adjuster's head exploding, but I didn't know why until I asked how much the check was for. I stuttered a response, and I never stutter. "$48,000???" was the response. I really knew something was up then, but I managed to keep from jumping up and down with joy!

      The adjuster had figured on 400 hours of an air frame mechanic's time, plus material. I deposited the check, paid the insurance premium and started dissecting the damage to the trailer. I replaced about 12 feet of damaged aircraft aluminum and, without comparing sides no one has been able to detect the repairs. The materials were $300 in rivets and Alclad, an aluminum alloy with pure aluminum on both sides for polishing. I kept track of my time. I figure I made just about $1,000 an hour for 48 hours of work.

      The scam became apparent when I got a heated message from the adjuster that claimed that just one bad rivet could cause the skin to peel off like shingles in a hurricane, and that I had made a horrible mistake in fixing it myself. I never returned his call. He used his position to find a scenario where he could direct the work to a buddy and get a kickback. That was criminal, but I had no standing to do anything. I happened to know a few people at the insurance company and I let them know what he had done. I don't believe they prosecuted him, but I'm told they never used his services again.

      I'm not saying this scenario is a scam, but I sure don't think things are Kosher. However, I instructed my friend to go back for more money. They were offered just under $19,000 to settle and lose the trailer or $14,000 and they get to keep it. That's a huge difference on a salvage amount so I left that for them to argue. If the amount is legit it meant that the estimate was likely over $20,000, triggering the totaling of the trailer. I used the $20,000 figure as my bid for repairs. Gary balked initially as he had paid less than that for the trailer and his wife beat him into submission as she really wants me to do the work. I believe I provide a comfort level they are not going to get anywhere else.

      To avoid friendship problems I offered an alternative payment method that I used with Tom's trailer. $300 a week in rent and $85 hr. Gary is going to be my helper, so he gets to save the $20 hour I'll pay him.

      I re-created the tailer build here:

      https://forums.vwvortex.com/showthre...ht=Spartanette

      Note: No tongue jack.


    Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •  
    vwvortex.com is an independent Volkswagen enthusiast website owned and operated by VerticalScope Inc. Content on vwvortex.com is generated by its users. vwvortex.com is not in any way affiliated with Volkswagen AG.