Outfitter Warning: The Van Guys LLC in Bend

pworthington

New member
To all van owners considering an Outfitter, be fair warned of the Van Guys LLC located in Bend, Oregon. I've had to learn the hard way, and I wish I could go back in time to warn my past self of the damages that were yet to come. I had been in touch with Ian Beveridge for a while and had his shop install an Espar heater, electrical system, set cabinets, etc. After my horrible and on-going experience, I felt compelled to reach out to the van community and warn everyone.

The short story:

My brand new Sprinter van has $3400+ of body damage because of The Van Guys LLC. While they were installing my roof vent & solar panels, the roof was creased and caved in towards the front of my van, as well as the back. There are also three areas where a drillbit almost penetrated my van (one spot on roof, and two one side panel). Ultimately, my insurance is having to cover this damage. Today (two weeks later) I was also sent an additional & fraudulent bill for $2,378 after I had paid in full ($4625). If I could go back in time and warn myself of this business, I would. My van has been compromised, my insurance is paying to fix the body damage, and I have an incorrect bill that has been threatened to go to collections if I don't pay.

The detailed story:

I dropped my month old Sprinter off with less than 800 miles on ODO/ perfect condition at Ian's shop- Van Guys LLC. I left him with a bunch of parts, as well as a check for $2125 to cover the additional parts cost (Espar D2 heater, solar kit, and batteries). A week later, I showed up to pick up my finished van and pay for the labor ($2500). Once I got to his shop, I climbed my side ladder and immediately noticed roof damage and boot prints all over the roof. He had been walking around on my roof and creased/pushed in the front area of the roof, as well as the back of the roof by the doors. In addition, he pushed a rivnut almost through the roof from the inside. I pointed the damage out, but he barely recognized it as an issue. I asked him what we were going to do to fix the roof, and he said it was too late because the headliner has already been put back up. Later on in the day as he got closer to finishing, we closed the slider door and noticed two dents on the side panel. He was drilling on the inside of the van to secure wires and nearly pushed through the big side panel on the passenger wall. It wasn't until this moment that he admitted my van needed to go to a Body Shop. He said he would pay for a Body Shop near me to fix the damages he caused. I thought, he seems reasonable enough, I will go with this. In good faith, I paid Ian the remaining $2500 I owed him for his labor and said I would be in touch regarding the Body Shop estimate. The following Monday, I had two local shops estimate the damage. Both shops estimated $3400+ in damage and were within $100 of each other. I sent the estimates to Ian and he said they were "exorbitant." He said his insurance would cover the cost, so I waited for a few days to hear from his adjuster. After a week of hearing nothing, I contacted him the following Monday (yesterday). He admitted he didn't have insurance and that I needed to bring the van to Bend. I said I would be willing to do so under certain conditions (I can communicate with the body shop, you pay for my travel expenses, and you finish some loose ends you didn't have time for). He said he would contact J&R Auto Body and Bend Auto Body, so I waited. This morning, he told me to file it through my insurance. He also sent me an additional bill for $2378 for "additional parts and labor," which is fraudulent. I have two invoices from him that show my $4165 in payments and $0.00 owed, even with text reading "Final labor payment." Magically, I owe him an extra $2378 two weeks later after he finds out my insurance company will be reaching out for the $3500 in damages.

Here are the other issues besides the body damage:

He drilled holes too large to set my NOCO plugs on the exterior of the van. He used the wrong screws, which left air/water gaps and an improper seal. I found out because rusty water started dripping down the plug base from the inside and outside of the van. I had to remove both plugs, sand the rust off the body, and set them again with different screws and caulk. He also set my cabinets 1/4" off (vertically). He tried to set an aluminum light bar underneath, but there is a noticeable gap underneath it due to the 1/4" gap. The solar panel mounts included 2" stacks of washers on the driver's side of the track, and I believe they're galvanized washers (still yet to confirm).

All around, this is the worst experience I've ever had with a business. My brand new van is compromised and is sitting in my driveway with water collecting in the roof dents as I wait for my insurance to issue a claim. I'm having to use my insurance and pay a deductible. On top of all this, he's issued a false $2378 invoice two weeks after final & full payment and threatened to send it to collections if I don't pay within 30 days. You can't make this stuff up!

I hope people read this and think twice about using The Van Guys in Bend, OR. Although other Outfitters like Outside Van and Van Specialities are more expensive & have a wait, I'm sure they'd never treat a customer like this. You truly get what you pay for in this world!
 

pworthington

New member
To all van owners considering an Outfitter, be fair warned of the Van Guys LLC located in Bend, Oregon. I've had to learn the hard way, and I wish I could go back in time to warn my past self of the damages that were yet to come. I had been in touch with Ian Beveridge for a while and had his shop install an Espar heater, electrical system, set cabinets, etc. After my horrible and on-going experience, I felt compelled to reach out to the van community and warn everyone.

The short story:

My brand new Sprinter van has $3400+ of body damage because of The Van Guys LLC. While they were installing my roof vent & solar panels, the roof was creased and caved in towards the front of my van, as well as the back. There are also three areas where a drillbit almost penetrated my van (one spot on roof, and two one side panel). Ultimately, my insurance is having to cover this damage. Today (two weeks later) I was also sent an additional & fraudulent bill for $2,378 after I had paid in full ($4625). If I could go back in time and warn myself of this business, I would. My van has been compromised, my insurance is paying to fix the body damage, and I have an incorrect bill that has been threatened to go to collections if I don't pay.

The detailed story:

I dropped my month old Sprinter off with less than 800 miles on ODO/ perfect condition at Ian's shop- Van Guys LLC. I left him with a bunch of parts, as well as a check for $2125 to cover the additional parts cost (Espar D2 heater, solar kit, and batteries). A week later, I showed up to pick up my finished van and pay for the labor ($2500). Once I got to his shop, I climbed my side ladder and immediately noticed roof damage and boot prints all over the roof. He had been walking around on my roof and creased/pushed in the front area of the roof, as well as the back of the roof by the doors. In addition, he pushed a rivnut almost through the roof from the inside. I pointed the damage out, but he barely recognized it as an issue. I asked him what we were going to do to fix the roof, and he said it was too late because the headliner has already been put back up. Later on in the day as he got closer to finishing, we closed the slider door and noticed two dents on the side panel. He was drilling on the inside of the van to secure wires and nearly pushed through the big side panel on the passenger wall. It wasn't until this moment that he admitted my van needed to go to a Body Shop. He said he would pay for a Body Shop near me to fix the damages he caused. I thought, he seems reasonable enough, I will go with this. In good faith, I paid Ian the remaining $2500 I owed him for his labor and said I would be in touch regarding the Body Shop estimate. The following Monday, I had two local shops estimate the damage. Both shops estimated $3400+ in damage and were within $100 of each other. I sent the estimates to Ian and he said they were "exorbitant." He said his insurance would cover the cost, so I waited for a few days to hear from his adjuster. After a week of hearing nothing, I contacted him the following Monday (yesterday). He admitted he didn't have insurance and that I needed to bring the van to Bend. I said I would be willing to do so under certain conditions (I can communicate with the body shop, you pay for my travel expenses, and you finish some loose ends you didn't have time for). He said he would contact J&R Auto Body and Bend Auto Body, so I waited. This morning, he told me to file it through my insurance. He also sent me an additional bill for $2378 for "additional parts and labor," which is fraudulent. I have two invoices from him that show my $4165 in payments and $0.00 owed, even with text reading "Final labor payment." Magically, I owe him an extra $2378 two weeks later after he finds out my insurance company will be reaching out for the $3500 in damages.

Here are the other issues besides the body damage:

He drilled holes too large to set my NOCO plugs on the exterior of the van. He used the wrong screws, which left air/water gaps and an improper seal. I found out because rusty water started dripping down the plug base from the inside and outside of the van. I had to remove both plugs, sand the rust off the body, and set them again with different screws and caulk. He also set my cabinets 1/4" off (vertically). He tried to set an aluminum light bar underneath, but there is a noticeable gap underneath it due to the 1/4" gap. The solar panel mounts included 2" stacks of washers on the driver's side of the track, and I believe they're galvanized washers (still yet to confirm).

All around, this is the worst experience I've ever had with a business. My brand new van is compromised and is sitting in my driveway with water collecting in the roof dents as I wait for my insurance to issue a claim. I'm having to use my insurance and pay a deductible. On top of all this, he's issued a false $2378 invoice two weeks after final & full payment and threatened to send it to collections if I don't pay within 30 days. You can't make this stuff up!

I hope people read this and think twice about using The Van Guys in Bend, OR. Although other Outfitters like Outside Van and Van Specialities are more expensive & have a wait, I'm sure they'd never treat a customer like this. You truly get what you pay for in this world!
 

GeorgeRa

2013 Sprinter DIY 144WB, Portland OR

pworthington

New member
I recognized the name Eric Voss from the MB dealership in Eugene in this article - http://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/4418540-151/bend-business-turns-vans-into-base-camps



I would suggest sending an email with your issues to Eric Voss so he will not recommend this outfit to his customers as well to the person who wrote this article.



Sorry about your experience, I can imagine how frustrating this is for you.



George.


I wanted to make sure I attached photos of the damage I was sent away from Van Guys LLC with. Hope this helps someone!




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
Oh Dear!
This is what scares me daily as a business owner--employee carelessness.
I have been mentioning this in another post !

I suppose it begs the question have you taken these issues up with the owners of the business? Normally this is covered by their garage keepers insurance.

For me very alarming and if this was done in my shop I would be on the warpath !
Angry would not describe my reaction to handing over a final product to a customer in that shape. Embarrassing
Not good! 'BUT fixable!
Dennis
 

pworthington

New member
The sad part is that the owner of the business, Ian Beveridge, did all the faulty work himself, not even an employee of his. Nonetheless, it's been a rough path.
 

lindenengineering

Well-known member
Then that is troubling!
In any case it will be alright in the end!
This problem will pass as it often does!
Have faith and enjoy your Thanksgiving and the very best festive of American festive occasions with your close family friends .
My best wishes to you from us at Linden and a satisfactory ultimate resolution.
Best Wishes
Dennis
 

Cheyenne

UK 2004 T1N 313CDi
Is that clear household (domestic) silicon he has used to seal you Maxfan to the roof?

If so it is totally unsuitable and can lead to corrosion as the Acetic acid leaches out during curing. The quick way to tell is does it smell of Vinegar? If it is then it needs removing asap and replacing with the correct non setting caulking mastic. I am sure others can advise on a suitable product for your locale.

Keith.
 

kendall69

New member
Stupidity never ceases to amaze me. If all this guy does is roof work one would think he would have a custom scaffold system that "hovers" over the printer by a few inched so his workers can be in the scaffold and do their work and never set foot on the van.

The thing is that this damage NO MATTER how it's fixed will still not be "new" or "original" and the owner now must life with a bastardized Sprinter.
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
Pworthington,
For the second time I have merged your multiple threads. They are now in the Conversion Section. I can appreciate your frustration, but creating multiple threads clutters the forum and loses continuity for replies. Please keep to this thread only.

vic
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
reason to only deal with MB approved upfitter

https://www.upfitterportal.com/en-us/upfitters/locator
That's good advice, but not necessarily easy.

The search function allows RV only upfitter selection. That knocks a bunch off the list.

Adding to that, many hits are manufacturers like Airstream, Roadtrek, Tiffin... that I don't think want custom business. The list becomes very short.

My guess is less than 10 MB approved custom shops nationwide, actually likely less. Assuming that, Sportsmoble comprises 30% of the total.

The results remind me of the very long official BeVo lists for fluids as opposed to those that are actually available in North America.

:2cents: vic
 

pworthington

New member
Yes he used clear silicone and I need to remove it and re-caulk it. I build homes, so was thinking of using DAP 230. Anyone recommend something specific for this? Or recommendations on how to remove it?

**UPDATE**

I forgot to mention this in my above thread. Ian wired a switch in my dash so that I could cut the connection from alternator to selenoid if my batteries were topped off while driving. I asked if this was possible/ reasonable, he said oh yeah no problem. The way he wired it, the collision control kicks on when you switch it OFF while driving. This kicks on braking! AND the check engine light. It's absolutely insane! Since he has basically told me to go F&$* myself, I have to remove this switch for my own safety and my vehicle's well-being. In the building world, we call these types of people HACKS.
 

Cheyenne

UK 2004 T1N 313CDi

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
The way he wired it, the collision control kicks on when you switch it OFF while driving. This kicks on braking! AND the check engine light.
:wtf:

Okay, so if everything is as described, You have a strong case for legal action. This type of work is not only shoddy, its dangerous. Improper wiring practices are a fire risk as well. You may have some moral obligation to pursue this...

I also suggest having a professional mechanic (or the dealer if you can handle the cost) review this guys electrical work. You don't want some crazy problem down the road.

Acetone and xylene will soften silicone. Then scrape it off and scuff to remove the residue. Remember that nothing will bond to cured silicone, not even more silicone! Dicor makes several self leveling sealants that are designed for sealing roof penetrations.
 
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pworthington

New member
I've taken to the internet to try and warn as many people as possible of his quality of work. He has totally and completely comrpomised my brand new van, which I'm having to stitch back together via my insurance and personal time. Yes, the switch wiring is absolutely dangerous. I've taped it in an ON position so that I don't accidentally bump it while driving and have the brakes slam on.

Dicor Lap Sealant seems like a good choice for my re-caulk. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BRF7QE/ref=ox_sc_mini_detail?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER and this 3M product to remove old silicone: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000H5VNG8/ref=ox_sc_act_title_2?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER

I appreciate everyone's support on this thread. And yes I do feel morally obligated to pursue this.
 

Terrapin

Member
This is so sad. I hate to think about it. It's kind of like Vic's (Aqua Puttana) thread. "Why do we do our own sprinter work". Well, ... If you want it done right or at least to your specifications, you've got to do it yourself. We sure don't do our own conversions to save money unless you value your time at about $.38 per hour.
 

outbound

06/2500/140
this sort of stuff is precisely why i gave up trying to find competent help in my boat biz.
(where a hole drilled in the wrong place could result in me having to work for free for the next 2 weeks, if not months)
and why i do most/nearly all of my own sprinter work, so far anyway - just hope i can make it to Littleton Colorado
when i eventually will need EXPERT work done (vs the 'yeah we can work on your sprinter' shops that are clueless on these vans)

sorry to read about this, hope you get made whole in the outcome.
 

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