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Build a Bandit

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Any questions about Build a Bandit should be directed towards the Site Administrator. This thread had to me moved for reasons that cannot be discussed for right now. We need to keep the word out there about Build a Bandit and not to go with them and try to keep this info out there for people to be aware of. The previous thread has been moved at the owners request for now. More to follow soon.

This should include the alias shop names Pontiac Pros and Discount Classic Auto Restoration.
Potential buyers beware!!!  I'm assuming that the previous 70 page thread got taken down because crooks understand the legal system better than their victims.  I'll stick to just my story and what I know from personal experience.
My husband, Ed, paid in full $15,000 for a car restoration that was to last 11-12 months.  He'd spoken with Bob Mcelreath several times over the phone and told him this was a bucket list item.  Ed had just been diagnosed with a very rare debilitating disease.  Coincidentally, Bob had a friend with the very same rare disease.  Bob insisted that Ed stop bidding on the car on E-bay and agree to what he promised to be a much lower price for a full restoration with all the bells and whistles.  Bob insisted that he did enough business that he could afford to pass on his good fortune with someone facing such a miserable disease.  If anything should happen to Ed before the car was completed I would receive a full refund.  If he died afterward Bob assured him that his quality of car would easily be worth $25-30,000 and could really help me out if needed.  Ed was on cloud 9.  He wound up winning the bid anyway for $16,000, but Bob was so honest and good,he agreed to the original set upon price of $15,000.  $15,000 was wire transferred on June 4, 2012 and we received the paperwork (stamped “Paid”) on June 7th.  Later that night Ed died from an unknown heart condition.
I sent the final paperwork in a week later with the new information and a request for a phone call or e-mail to discuss the car.  I left a message on one of Bob’s phone lines a few days later.  After a week I started e-mailing.  After 6 weeks of attempting to call both phone lines with only a “mailbox full” message and well over a dozen e-mails I gave up trying to communicate with them from a distance.  In those 6 weeks I received 1 e-mail promising a call back later the same evening.  It never came.  I sent a certified letter demanding a full refund and stating that I’d be driving to the shop to pick it up.  I show up at the shop – a 4 ½ hour drive from my house and Bob’s son (or step-son) Zak, the “build coordinator,” is upset that he has to drive a whole 20 minutes to meet with me.  He never does.  He sends another employee with 2 copies of a new contract stating that the old contract is voided and they will reimburse me $15,000 within 30 business days.
As soon as I return home I learn that Bob is mass e-mailing all his customers explaining his absence and declaring a 30-60 day minimum hold on all contracts.  He had another family emergency (they happen quite a bit in his family if you believe him).  The company capital had been depleted.   He is liquidating the non-essential assets of his company to help him meet our unjustified demand for cars and refunds.  He threatens that any attempts by customers to get a lawyer or go to other legal authorities will force him into bankruptcy.  Further e-mails state that one customer (who he didn’t mention was more than 6 months overdue a “beautiful” car) was spreading mistruths and causing people to demand refunds.  Another e-mail unilaterally voids all contracts not signed by him.  Still another e-mail said that no one had paid him since June 1st (I have paperwork from his shop that prove otherwise, I’ve been in contact with at least one other that also paid in full, and still another got positive feedback from Bob – usually a seller only leaves positive feedback after the money is taken in).
Private contact with me are just unintelligible gibberish that contradicts his group e-mails.  He claims that the capital is depleted because employees had purchased things not even related to the shop yet a few minutes later he claims that he is the only one that makes purchases.  When I ask why my husband’s money wasn’t used for his car he first explains that that is just how he does business and then he explains that he has receipts made for my husband (He’d been gone or ignoring 6 weeks of  e-mails requesting contact yet he can purchase things for the car?) I have been in contact with 8 or 9 other customers that are all experiencing the same communication problems and contradictions.  He is horribly late on most cars.  He outright states that he is obtaining capital by selling more restorations.  He outright states that he is intending to use the money people pay thinking that he will use that money for their car and instead use it to refund me and others and finish still others’ cars.  He was upset that I added a warning to my husband’s premature positive feedback and claimed that I am hurting my chance of helping him help me (I refuse to be part of conning more victims).
This man is not to be trusted at all.  He banks on the fact that he is selling cars that are usually bought centered around a life crisis (divorce, disease, life celebration, death, etc.).  People aren’t thinking straight and get conned into giving all the money up front.  Hindsight is awesome.  Bob has changed his company name at least 3 times to get rid of bad publicity and I’d guess legal reasons.  The latest was to Pontiac Pros.  I can guarantee that my husband looked up Pontiac Pros before agreeing to the car.  There wasn’t anything out there about them yet. Google the multitude of other complaints about Bob on the internet before handing over money.  I have no personal knowledge of the quality of his work.  If you believe the hordes of previous customers, the ones that actually manage to get a car, it is not what is promised.

I asked Brett to move the thread and I sent you reason why.

 George W Payne

In my own little way, reading that 70+ page thread was one of the highlights of the day for me. Not because of the misfortune of the victims of BAB, but with the hope that Bob was getting closer to getting what he deserves. Hopefully the original thread will live another day.

waiting on the post his shop was raided by irs or sherriffs dept.

Was kind of like a soap opera or an ongoing saga. Some of his replies just have to make you laugh.

WTF are going to look foraward too reading now???

Was curious too see also if anyone else was going to folow George, and try to get thier car or some kind of reimbursement from him.
Actually, very surprised noone else has yet, that im aware of.
Well TA Widow, has been trying, hope to see/hear some good news about that soon

Whatever you guys do
Stay on em!

Sent From My Fancy Little Thinking Box


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