Bucket Trucks USA

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Lifetime Parts Warranty Doesn't Exist So Far
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GETTYSBURG, PA -- Brian of Bucket Trucks USA/Classic Motor Car Garage reconditions and sells bucket trucks via his website and on Ebay.

He touts his "lifetime parts warranty" and has a lengthy section in his eBay auctions about the dishonest practices of his competition and why folks should deal with his business.

I recently did a lease to own deal with him on a 1997 Ford F SuperDuty bucket truck. From day one, the heat/defrost/vent controls never worked properly. Everything defaulted to defrost. A check with a certified Ford mechanic determined that the vacuum pump was bad. The controls all run off of vacuum.

Brian was notified of this issue via email. His wife replied the same evening that he was "on the road for a few days" and would get back to me. That was September 14th. It is now October 1st and I have yet to hear another reply even though I've emailed twice since the initial notification.
During the transaction process Brian repeatedly told me about his parts warranty and how he had once shipped a transmission to a customer with a problem. He even wrote in by hand on the buyer's order, "Lifetime parts warranty from selling dealer's parts inventory. Customer to pay shipping costs. Does not cover labor".

At this juncture, I can't even get a reply about a relatively small item like a vacuum pump. I've since purchased a pump at my local NAPA and made arrangements for my Ford mechanic to intall.
Just a heads up to buyers. He has not backed up the warranty represented to me at this point in time. I feel that I've been forgotten now that the truck is off of his lot and resides 400 miles away from him.
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User Replies:
Starlord on 10/01/2011:
I believe that legally, he only warrants the parts that he installs. Since the vacuum pump is an original Ford part, he cannot warrant it against failure at all, that is the sole bailiwick of Ford Motor Company. Since he buys the parts from Ford, he can only guarantee that they are factory Ford parts, but not on how they will last.
toddsgoldens24 on 10/02/2011:
The point is that the dealer both verbally and in his own hand on the transaction paperwork offers to back up these parts.
This has not happened as yet. Is there recourse with the PA attorney general? I don't know yet.
Should he be morally obligated to do it because he wrote it into the paperwork himself as well as verbally telling me and citing previous examples? I believe that he should.
Alain on 10/02/2011:
You can contact the Pennsylvania Bureau of Consumer Protection for their advice on this, Toddsgolden, using this link to their website http://www.attorneygeneral.gov/consumers.aspx
or call their hotline: 1-800-441-2555, (717) 787-9707 [Harrisburg] or (215) 560-2414 [Philadelphia].
At Your Service on 10/02/2011:
It would seem to me that, before someone was to replace a part, they would have to confirm the part defective. I'd assume the only way to do this is work on the vehicle them self.

I would also think it incumbent on the buyer to try to reach Mr. Shafer a second time. Ideally, it would have been nice, assuming he was back in town, if he would have responded back quickly. But the additional effort to contact him is not a bad idea.
trmn8r on 10/02/2011:
I don't understand exactly what the statement "Lifetime parts warranty from selling dealer's parts inventory" means. It can't mean that he warranties everything on the truck from failure - he would go broke.

Seems to me you would need to reach Mr. Shafer to find out. Since email didn't work, did you try telephone?
toddsgoldens24 on 10/02/2011:
Additional efforts have been made to contact Mr. Shafer. No reply since September 14. I had no such problems getting calls/emails returned during the sale process.
Most of Mr. Shafer's sales leave his local area. If he thought he'd go broke by his "lifetime parts warranty" (his idea and wording, not mine), then he shouldn't offer it if he isn't legally obligated to.
He makes these offers no matter where the truck goes, so I have no idea how he plans on finding if the parts are truly defective or not. I'd gladly ship the old one to him. But again, he makes the warranty offer. It's written in his own hand. I didn't make it up.
Heck, even if he'd replied to me that he didn't cover this issue at least it would have been something. I just don't like the fact of being totally ignored after the sale.
BucketTrucks on 10/03/2011:
Hey Toddsgoldens24,
As a guy that works in the industry, these guys are pretty notorious for stuff like that. I have to admit that most warranties in the utility truck industry are bogus.

There are only a few dealers that actually "recondition" bucket trucks. A lot of times, dealers will just repaint them and do cosmetic fixes.

I'd suggest having an attorney contact Mr. Shafer. Unfortunately, that might be the only way to get the point across that you are serious.

Best of luck!
Gotrippedoff on 11/23/2011:
I also purchased a 97 f450 from Brian. I live in western Canada and decided to drive home form Gettysburg. Roughly 10 hrs of driving and the transmission would not shift from third to forth. By the time I made it home I had spoken to Brian numerous times and he assured me he would send the parts. He did send a solenoid for the tranny (ended up being a different problem). Anyway I took the truck in to become certified at a very reputable truck builder. I was informed that the truck had been sand blasted without being properly protected. There was also paint on the cylinders (not taped off). Anyway to make a long story short Brian is an amazing salesman who doesn't back his products. I traded the truck in before completing a single job with it.
ramsrule0_0 on 11/23/2011:
I would like to speak with you about this. I purchased a truck last year and had nothing but problems with it. About 10 hrs into the drive home the tranny would not change gears from third to forth. He assured me this was a solenoid issue and that he would send the parts. I also noticed a leak coming from the pump (for the lift) he told me it was a two dollar gasket and that he would send the part. I received the solenoid (ended up this was not the problem) and told the gasket for the pump had been shipped (never received). I also noticed a crack on the door for the bucket. Nothing was ever sent to remedy this. The steel step to enter the bucket was also damaged (again nothing was done to correct this). This all happened before my first day of work. I ended up trading the truck in and had a 10k loss. My advice to you is to rent a lift and build your client base. I am now working around the clock and am building a brand new bucket truck. I would really like to speak with you about this. I don't want this to happen to anyone else. My business almost went belly up before it started. I had a very difficult time contacting Brian via phone and email... this was an experience I wish I could forget.
toddsgoldens24 on 11/24/2011:
I've had the truck home since the beginning of September and used it on a few jobs. I also put a couple of thousand miles on it pulling my 7,000 lb. trailer.
So far the truck has performed as expected other than the vacuum pump issue. I also have a tow behind JLG lift that I owned before this truck and kept it as a backup or if I need to lifts on a job.
In my original post, I never mentioned the trailer/trailer brake wiring. I requested the truck to be ready to haul a trailer with a 7 pin connector and electric brakes. Brian & company tossed in an old trailer brake controller and the wiring never operated the brakes or lights correctly. Had to buy a new controller and then take the truck to a local shop to have that corrected.
To Gotrippedoff and ramsrule, thank you for your corroborating comments. Others who have posted here seem to think that it's somehow my fault for asking a guy to honor his own words both spoken and written. This guy is a fraud and should be exposed as such.
I had decided to let this issue go, but now that I find others have had problems, I just made an initial contact with the PA attorney general via the link provided by another user in an above post.
toddsgoldens24 on 12/21/2011:
Here it is, almost Christmas and I've yet to receive any answer from Mr. Shafer.
I've given the PA attorney general all of my information and the ball is in their court.
fishtration on 03/01/2012:
Would love to talk with anyone who has had problems with this company so far nothing but a bunch of talk wish I had never heard of them now all I have is truck that you don't know what will break next
signpro on 03/04/2012:
I had to use a local Pa. lawyer to get anything out of this guy... cost me a bunch, learned a good but expensive lesson. Be glad to talk to you anytime, I see this guy is changing his web site - probably his name as well... email me at vision@on.aibn.com anytime.
SAM on 02/24/2013:
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Buyer Beware
Posted by on
Contact me before considering purchasing a bucket truck from this company. I had a costly, terrible experience with this company and finally had to sue them to recover my money. I had a chance to see the entire operation, the quality of their refurbs and was fully exposed to the honesty claims.

I'd be glad to discuss it with anyone and strongly recommend contacting me before committing to any purchase.
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User Replies:
ramsrule0_0 on 01/22/2012:
Hello, I would love to speak to you about this, is there any way to talk over the phone? Damage was already done to me took a big loss! Curious how you sued them and who your lawyer was
trmn8r on 01/22/2012:
You can click on their name and send them a message.
bankyf on 03/11/2013:
Same experience here. They paint over the rust. Spray paint the interior and call it a refurb. BUYER BEWARE!! Picked it up from their VA state inspection station with a brand new safety inspection sticker and it needed over 2k in work to actually pass the inspection.
Signpro on 03/16/2013:
bankyf, that inspection station is just around the corner from their "shop". Too bad you didn't get a chance to see the "operation". Had another sign company in NY contact me for the name of the lawyer I used,last week. Glad lots of people have contacted me since I had to sue this character.
robert on 03/23/2013:
I am currently fighting brian for the delivery of a truck he began refurbishing in December, he said 5-6 weeks and it has been 15..brian will tell you anything to get you off the phone, I have hired a lawyer in gettysburg to begin filing suit against them and I have stopped all payment to finance company.. do not deal with his company!!!!!!
signpro on 10/16/2013:
just curious, did any of the trucks that had trouble shifting gears have a polished aluminum deck? the truck I had problems with had this type of deck......
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