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Toyman01
Toyman01 MegaDork
9/11/19 2:17 p.m.

Dear large national service company,

The price is the price. Accept it or send your employees down here to do the job. It's only 600 miles or so to your nearest office. 

No, I will not install parts that you provide. I don't care if you can buy them cheaper than I am supplying them. I don't care that you told your customer you would do the work for 10% over wholesale and think my prices are too high. I'm not going to cut my profit so you can get yours. Might should have thought about that before you threw that cheap price out there. 

I've got 4 guys working overtime every week keeping up with my customers, I really don't care if your customers get serviced in a timely or cheap manor. That goes doubly true when it's Walmart. To put it bluntly, I don't need your business or theirs. 

Go trade nickles with someone else. 

 

 

Antihero
Antihero SuperDork
9/11/19 2:55 p.m.
eastsideTim said:
Ashyukun (Robert) said:

In reply to eastsideTim :

I wish I would convince mine to drive something smaller when she doesn't have to be driving the truck toting around all of the stuff for work, but she doesn't even like riding in smaller vehicles except on occasion- when we've had something smaller (like the Saturn or the Prius) she always wanted to take her SUV.

On the other hand, I sorely miss having something smaller with a manual transmission- the Infiniti is great for what it was bought for (getting to and from the cabin, and now ferrying/towing stuff out there) and is IMO more fun to drive than the truck despite having less power, but once things are more settled financially I'm pretty certainly going to pick up something small, cheap, and stickshift to drive while the DMC is in the garage for the next few years...

Miata is always the answer laugh

Zx2s can be had stupid cheap everywhere.

 

Light, fun, fast for what it is (7ish sec 0-60),and gets great mpg

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/11/19 3:28 p.m.
Toyman01 said:

Dear large national service company,

The price is the price. Accept it or send your employees down here to do the job. It's only 600 miles or so to your nearest office. 

No, I will not install parts that you provide. I don't care if you can buy them cheaper than I am supplying them. I don't care that you told your customer you would do the work for 10% over wholesale and think my prices are too high. I'm not going to cut my profit so you can get yours. Might should have thought about that before you threw that cheap price out there. 

I've got 4 guys working overtime every week keeping up with my customers, I really don't care if your customers get serviced in a timely or cheap manor. That goes doubly true when it's Walmart. To put it bluntly, I don't need your business or theirs. 

Go trade nickles with someone else.

That's your preference, but personally if I find out that a company offering both parts and labor is essentially hiding labor costs in inflated parts prices like this, I find it to be a bit dishonest and avoid them (or start looking for alternatives if I found out the hard way). That's my preference...I have no problem with a company making a decent profit on labor, just tell me what the labor cost really is, don't play shell games with it and treat me like a bad guy for accidentally discovering the truth.

mtn
mtn MegaDork
9/11/19 3:37 p.m.

We got a medical bill, and they clearly had erred on the amount and the due date. The amount was off by about $100, fine, whatever. But the due date was for 9/19/2069. 

 

Rant part of this? My wife called and said it was wrong. Seriously honey? We couldn't have let them figure that out on their own? We could have had an interest free loan for 50 years!

Tactical Penguin
Tactical Penguin SuperDork
9/11/19 4:30 p.m.

Really?  None of you berkeleyin' tough guys even bothered to check on a coworker with a flat because its kinda warm out and raining a little?

Years of beater experience are the reason I carry a moving blanket and a pair of knee pads in the car.  Got him on his way in under fifteen minutes, probably could have been less but I was being super careful because I was wearing dress clothes.

 

Duke
Duke MegaDork
9/11/19 5:12 p.m.

In reply to Brett_Murphy :

It’s also illegal. Call the postmaster and report them. 

 

RevRico
RevRico PowerDork
9/11/19 5:59 p.m.

If you didn't want my opinion you wouldn't have shoved your opinion down my throat. 

Toyman01
Toyman01 MegaDork
9/11/19 6:03 p.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :

I don't hide anything. Parts prices are clearly listed on the quote. We mark them up 30% on average. Labor rates and hours are also clearly listed on the quotes, they are not cheap either. 

I am a retailer, not a wholesaler. If you want wholesale, buy from wholesalers and install it yourself. If you want me to install and warranty it, you will have to buy the parts from me at the prices I set. 

If that is not acceptable or they want bargain basement pricing and the quality that goes with it, they are welcome to call someone else. 

Cooter
Cooter UltraDork
9/11/19 7:58 p.m.

I'm really starting to get tired of seeing people in my life get cancer.

Cotton
Cotton PowerDork
9/11/19 8:02 p.m.
Ashyukun (Robert) said:

In reply to eastsideTim :

I wish I would convince mine to drive something smaller when she doesn't have to be driving the truck toting around all of the stuff for work, but she doesn't even like riding in smaller vehicles except on occasion- when we've had something smaller (like the Saturn or the Prius) she always wanted to take her SUV.

On the other hand, I sorely miss having something smaller with a manual transmission- the Infiniti is great for what it was bought for (getting to and from the cabin, and now ferrying/towing stuff out there) and is IMO more fun to drive than the truck despite having less power, but once things are more settled financially I'm pretty certainly going to pick up something small, cheap, and stickshift to drive while the DMC is in the garage for the next few years...

Not sure how in tune you are with the DMC crowd,   but I’m looking for a project if you know of any available.

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH MegaDork
9/11/19 8:06 p.m.
Toyman01 said:

In reply to GameboyRMH :

I don't hide anything. Parts prices are clearly listed on the quote. We mark them up 30% on average. Labor rates and hours are also clearly listed on the quotes, they are not cheap either. 

I am a retailer, not a wholesaler. If you want wholesale, buy from wholesalers and install it yourself. If you want me to install and warranty it, you will have to buy the parts from me at the prices I set. 

If that is not acceptable or they want bargain basement pricing and the quality that goes with it, they are welcome to call someone else. 

 

If you don't want to warranty parts bought elsewhere that's completely understandable and normal, but if you won't even install parts bought elsewhere and can't turn a profit on a labor-only job, I can't think of any rational explanation other than part of the labor cost actually being in your parts cost, whether the construction of such a pricing system was intentional or not. Lots of people are happy to install parts and not be on the hook if they lunch themselves later, myself included.

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
9/11/19 8:15 p.m.
GameboyRMH said:
Toyman01 said:

Dear large national service company,

The price is the price. Accept it or send your employees down here to do the job. It's only 600 miles or so to your nearest office. 

No, I will not install parts that you provide. I don't care if you can buy them cheaper than I am supplying them. I don't care that you told your customer you would do the work for 10% over wholesale and think my prices are too high. I'm not going to cut my profit so you can get yours. Might should have thought about that before you threw that cheap price out there. 

I've got 4 guys working overtime every week keeping up with my customers, I really don't care if your customers get serviced in a timely or cheap manor. That goes doubly true when it's Walmart. To put it bluntly, I don't need your business or theirs. 

Go trade nickles with someone else.

That's your preference, but personally if I find out that a company offering both parts and labor is essentially hiding labor costs in inflated parts prices like this, I find it to be a bit dishonest and avoid them (or start looking for alternatives if I found out the hard way). That's my preference...I have no problem with a company making a decent profit on labor, just tell me what the labor cost really is, don't play shell games with it and treat me like a bad guy for accidentally discovering the truth.

It's not a shell game.  It's how business is done.  I supply the parts, I get to mark them up.   You supply the parts, there is exactly no warranty. I charge you $200 to install and it doesn't work?  The next one costs you $200 to install   Part is wrong?  You pay for the time I'm sitting.

Profit is not a dirty word.

RevRico
RevRico PowerDork
9/11/19 8:30 p.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :

Just judging by what I've seen in threads, and how busy the guys in his line of work are here in a dying low populated area, I'm betting there's no shortage of work available. You don't stay in this business long with a bad reputation either. When you have the ability to choose who to do work for, and name your price, you're spinning your wheels doing labor only gigs at best, costing money from bigger jobs at worst by having crews busy earning less than they could be. 

There's still the liability and frivolous lawsuit thing too. You're safer installing parts and systems you sourced yourself than risking whatever used/discount/off brand is still going to perform and function as it should. Because when Jimmy DipE36 M3 somehow manages to get his hands stuck in a door, if you installed it, you're first in line when the lawsuits start. 

I apologize if I'm speaking out of turn here, but I really have to hand it to Toyman for getting himself into a position where he can make those decisions. 

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) UberDork
9/11/19 10:28 p.m.
Cotton said:
Ashyukun (Robert) said:

In reply to eastsideTim :

I wish I would convince mine to drive something smaller when she doesn't have to be driving the truck toting around all of the stuff for work, but she doesn't even like riding in smaller vehicles except on occasion- when we've had something smaller (like the Saturn or the Prius) she always wanted to take her SUV.

On the other hand, I sorely miss having something smaller with a manual transmission- the Infiniti is great for what it was bought for (getting to and from the cabin, and now ferrying/towing stuff out there) and is IMO more fun to drive than the truck despite having less power, but once things are more settled financially I'm pretty certainly going to pick up something small, cheap, and stickshift to drive while the DMC is in the garage for the next few years...

Not sure how in tune you are with the DMC crowd,   but I’m looking for a project if you know of any available.

I'm unfortunately pretty out of touch with the community, but once I get into the work on the car will be looking to reconnect more with them. DMCTalk.org is one of the main forums that I used to be active on and will likely be documenting the work on mine at (as well as here), and they have a decent sales section that may be worth looking at.

Appleseed
Appleseed MegaDork
9/11/19 10:44 p.m.

Its 86 F, 99% humidity.

Windows are shut because its raining like mad.

Air conditioning isn't on.

 

 

Guess who's not sleeping tonight?

Toyman01
Toyman01 MegaDork
9/12/19 8:03 a.m.

In reply to GameboyRMH :

I think it's great you have a system that is making money and works for you. Stick with it. Being successful in business is all about finding a niche you can fill better than anyone else. Sounds like you have done that. There are a lot of people that never make it to that point and go broke trying.

My problem is we are already averaging 10-20 man hours of OT a week. My last worker comp audit hit me for $4000 in additional premiums because of overtime in the last 12 months. If a customer wants a cheap labor rate and to supply their own parts, then I have to pass that OT cost to my normal customers, the customers that don't mind paying a little more for the best. I would also have to ask my guys to work more hours than they already are. Why would I do that for a tiny percentage of my total sales. I'm better off not making my guys not work even longer hours and just telling the those customers to call someone else.

There are a lot of companies that will do anything for any price. To be honest, I could probably make more money if I did the same, but I decided 15 years ago that I was not going to be the cheap alternative in my industry. We would do our best work to provide a quality product and service all the time. We are not cheap. Cheap is the guy down the road. I'm the company you call when he can't get it done. I make as much or more money fixing other peoples screw-ups than I would if I had sold the job to start with and done it right the first time. Some people have learned that lesson and call us. Some haven't and a lot of them still end up calling us. 

 

 

Antihero
Antihero SuperDork
9/12/19 9:02 a.m.
Toyman01 said:

In reply to GameboyRMH :

I think it's great you have a system that is making money and works for you. Stick with it. Being successful in business is all about finding a niche you can fill better than anyone else. Sounds like you have done that. There are a lot of people that never make it to that point and go broke trying.

My problem is we are already averaging 10-20 man hours of OT a week. My last worker comp audit hit me for $4000 in additional premiums because of overtime in the last 12 months. If a customer wants a cheap labor rate and to supply their own parts, then I have to pass that OT cost to my normal customers, the customers that don't mind paying a little more for the best. I would also have to ask my guys to work more hours than they already are. Why would I do that for a tiny percentage of my total sales. I'm better off not making my guys not work even longer hours and just telling the those customers to call someone else.

There are a lot of companies that will do anything for any price. To be honest, I could probably make more money if I did the same, but I decided 15 years ago that I was not going to be the cheap alternative in my industry. We would do our best work to provide a quality product and service all the time. We are not cheap. Cheap is the guy down the road. I'm the company you call when he can't get it done. I make as much or more money fixing other peoples screw-ups than I would if I had sold the job to start with and done it right the first time. Some people have learned that lesson and call us. Some haven't and a lot of them still end up calling us. 

 

 

I tell people that I'm not in the business of  cheapest, I'm in the business of best.

 

And most the time the most expensive thing you can do is go for the cheapest concrete/construction guy around

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) UberDork
9/12/19 9:10 a.m.

Drove the Infiniti out to the cabin last night for the (mostly) final walk-through with the contractor since we needed to haul out the 6-foot long branch chandelier I built and using the truck for it would have meant emptying out all of the Dancer's work stuff from the bed. No problem right, the Infiniti (which I some time ago affectionately nicknamed 'Buzz') was bought pretty much expressly for things like this.

One of the things that I brought out was my 8-foot ladder since I was hoping it would be enough to put up the chandelier with (it wasn't). It had to be strapped to the roof, which worked fine- until I was stupid and didn't pull it off first and hoped I could get some stuff out of the hatch and broke off part of the wind deflector thing that mounts to the top of the back hatch. Guess I'll be looking for a replacement one in a junkyard down the line (though honestly, at this point? I would LOVE to get to spend a day just poking around in a junkyard... am I going to have the time to anytime soon? NOPE).

Furthermore, the banging around going up and down the hill knocked the muffler connection loose again and it was too hot to be able to put back together out there so had to drive home with it not hooked up right, meaning it was dumping hot exhaust onto the underside of the cargo area heating it up and making a huge stink. The Dancer's allergies are being horrible now so we had the windows closed and A/C on, so it was either open the windows and have her allergies get worse or have the windows closed and deal with the smell of hot insulation and carpet.

Even though the contractor's primary work on the cabin is done, there is still a E36 M3TON of work still to be done, at least a modest amount of which I'm probably doing myself but a good bit (namely putting up the wood to enclose the underside) will take at least one other person, so I've got to figure out that as well on top of trying to make all of the financial pieces fit. 

As I said... I need a vacation to just wander around in a junkyard for a day...

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) UberDork
9/12/19 9:30 a.m.

In reply to Antihero :

Unfortunately there's not apparently a lot of them nearby- there's only one on CL. Currently the most promising for my purposes would be this: https://lexington.craigslist.org/cto/d/mount-sterling-1994-mitsubishi-eclipse/6973747483.html

Likely going to start a separate thread for this, though for at least the next month (and likely longer) it will be purely wishful thinking.

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
9/12/19 1:11 p.m.

Everyone is feeling better, finally.

and now the water heater is acting up.

The burner and pilot light won't stay lit for very long.

I know its never been serviced, so now I get to learn about natural gas hot water heaters.

Of course the wife is making comments about how "everything is falling apart around here"

Yeah its been there since 2006, I'd say its had a good long run, so lets not go throwing "everything" into the trash, eh?

Ashyukun (Robert)
Ashyukun (Robert) UberDork
9/12/19 3:07 p.m.

I'm really, really worried that when the original contractor had the digging done to hook up the electric to the cabin (and, ironically, to run the waste line to the septic) that the digger destroyed a pipe between the primary leaching part of the septic and the overflow tank. I've been on the phone with the septic installer and send pictures, but I'm far from convinced that he's understanding what I'm saying/showing the pictures of. I REALLY don't want to get all of the plumbing and everything hooked up only to find out that the septic system is essentially venting into the air at the bottom of the steps to the cabin...

Streetwiseguy
Streetwiseguy MegaDork
9/12/19 3:31 p.m.
Stefan said:

Everyone is feeling better, finally.

and now the water heater is acting up.

The burner and pilot light won't stay lit for very long.

I know its never been serviced, so now I get to learn about natural gas hot water heaters.

Of course the wife is making comments about how "everything is falling apart around here"

Yeah its been there since 2006, I'd say its had a good long run, so lets not go throwing "everything" into the trash, eh?

If it has a pilot light instead of a electronic ignitor, it has a thing called a thermocouple.  It sits in the flame of the pilot and creates a signal  down a tube that tells the gas valve to keep the pilot lit.

Cheap, pretty generic, available at any hardware store.  I keep a spare hanging beside the furnace and water heater.

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
9/12/19 5:26 p.m.

In reply to Streetwiseguy :

Seems like it just needed to be cleaned up...

After a thorough vacuuming, cleaning the burner and shining up the thermocouple it works again.

I need to look at the parts diagram to figure out what rusted out, but at least its working again.

mad_machine
mad_machine MegaDork
9/12/19 9:35 p.m.

wow.. that rust is a bit scary looking. I would be considering a new hot water heater soon

Stefan
Stefan MegaDork
9/12/19 10:44 p.m.

In reply to mad_machine :

yeah, I believe it’s the baffle that runs up the middle.

I’ll probably pick one up this weekend.

 

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