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Old June 23, 2012, 12:29 AM   #1
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Gun smith won't return my gun!

Long story short, I sent my M1917 S&W to an out-of-state gunsmith for restoration about 15 months ago. He claims the work was completed, but he hasn't had time to test fire least that's what he's been saying since April.

I've been asking for the retun of my weapon since then. Two weeks ago I demanded it's return and he agreed to have it to me this week.

Keep in mind that all fees, return shipping, etc., were paid in advance!

What do I do? Do I give him one more chance?

If he still doesn't return my weapon after another demand, then whom do I call? ATF? The local authorities in his state? File a lawsuit?
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Old June 23, 2012, 12:42 AM   #2
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I would start with the police department in his city or town, and follow up immediately with the BATFE.
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Old June 23, 2012, 01:55 AM   #3
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Never, ever pay any craftsman in advance,
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Old June 23, 2012, 02:01 AM   #4
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good advice ty
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Old June 23, 2012, 02:33 AM   #5
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call the local police dept asap...see first reply too
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Old June 23, 2012, 07:51 AM   #6
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Contact as many consumer protection agencies as you can locate. BBB, Attorney General, Chamber of Commerce, local police, State police, AFT. Write a letter to the editor of his local paper. Whatever you can think of. Bombard him with inquiries and other annoyances. Call him frequently and complain. Threaten legal action. Don't let up. As a former debt collector I know it can often be hard to get the message through, you have to be persistent. Demand action "now", but don't threaten physical harm.
Good luck.
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Old June 24, 2012, 09:33 AM   #7
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Sounds to me like he might not have your gun done and might not have the funds to finish it.
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Old June 24, 2012, 09:34 AM   #8
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He's had his chance. Your first phone call was enough for any honest person. Call the sheriff of his town. Call your own sheriff and file a criminal complaint for theft or conversion of property, give the serial number for the search warrant. They can sieze it and return it to you. Have your attorney call him and tell him he's going to be sued if the pistol isn't shipped within the hour. Complain to the media that runs his advertisements, and BBB, all of them.

I'm a nice guy, but I get tired of being ripped off.
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Old June 24, 2012, 11:58 AM   #9
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If you paid with a credit card, you can get the charges reversed and let them pursue him for theft
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Old June 24, 2012, 10:20 PM   #10
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After that long the CC reversal is not going to be simple.

I would call his local PD and talk with them. See if they know anything about him. Almost had a local gunsmith do some work for me a few years back. THen all the sudden it came out a bunch of rifles and handguns were missing and several people in his operation had long criminal records. Big mess.
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Old June 25, 2012, 06:00 PM   #11
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They will certainly reverse the charges, but may need some encouragement to actually work for a few minutes. Don't let them blow you off on that!

A similar incident happened to a friend of mine locally. He had two or three pistols in with this (nameless) smith and he just ups and closes shop one day, no sign, no forwarding addy, nothing. He wasn't too hard to track down and he took a Deputy over there to the mans house and collected his guns. They call it theft, and no amount of rationalizing it with details changes that.

I would make the trip on principle if it came to that. File with his local BBB also. Then others can easily check and see if there's any honor problems with the man. That will hurt him in the wallet. Perseverance is on your side.
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Old June 25, 2012, 07:31 PM   #12
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I had something similar happen a couple of years ago. Lots of promises, then after the promised completion date had long since come and gone, no more responses to e-mails, nobody answered the telephone, nothing at all. Did a bit of Googling on the name and discovered that the business had tanked and was in bankruptcy.

Call to the local PD, spoke with a nice sounding desk officer who understood the problem and was willing to see if they could grease the skids a bit short of having to get me to swear out a formal complaint. I think an officer patrolling the guy's residence neighborhood stopped by to ask how things were going. A few days after the phone call, I received a package with my guns and parts in it. All there, work maybe 50 to 60 percent completed. The only note in the package just said, "Sorry." My guess is that the officer explained to the gentleman that theft by conversion is still theft, and a crime.
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Old June 25, 2012, 07:43 PM   #13
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It would be nice to know this gunsmiths name. Hopefully I never unknowingly select him to work for me.
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Old June 27, 2012, 03:18 PM   #14
Don P
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It would be nice to know this gunsmiths name
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