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Outlaws Rod & Custom Reviews
During the latter part of July 2014 I took my beloved, 1994 Chevrolet Corvette to Asa Wilson and his Outlaw Racing company.
My car had a new engine, with a minor exhaust backfire. When I delivered my vehicle to Outlaws it was a complete running vehicle. Engine was running with only problem known was backfiring.
My car was driven off trailer by me & driven into Outlaws shop by Asa Wilson.
Asa Wilson in an email before I took my car there, advised me that if his shop could not determine what was wrong with my car, he would not charge me. (Exhibit 1).
That along with Asa being Navy retired, or so he claims, along with the many performance cars in his shop, gave me confidence to believe in him.
What should the approach be to diagnosing the backfiring? They were to check the engine timing, since on a previous motor, the timing was off.
There is more than one way to verify timing.
They could have pull spark plug #1, check for TDC Top Dead Center on the crank and piston positioning . If a problem found, they should have reported back to me the owner for follow-ups.
They could do as they did, and pull the front of the timing chain cover off. Upon doing this, they found the timing was correctly set.
Next they convinced me my new engine had a used or bad timing chain. They did this by showing me what is called looseness in the chain.
I said ok If you all think the chain should be replaced. Unfortunately they gave me no quote on how much. Keep in mind there was to be no charge, if they did not find the backfiring problem. Since they had the timing chain cover off, (their choice) and they convinced me the chain was bad, I said ok. This required nothing more than removing the harmonic balancer and installing the replacement chain.
Unfortunately Outlaws couldn’t figure out how to get the ATI harmonic balancer off: So they did the following:
This very complicated engine was removed from my car. Total incompetence and disregard for me the customer. Without consulting me and certainly without my consent they took my engine out and damaged parts and never returned some parts. See photos attached below as to the state of my car when delivered and when Asa Wilson asked me to pick it up.
They then sent me several invoices weeks apart. One for 1200.00, 1600.00 and one for just over 2100.00 or so. Attached.
When I asked why I was getting invoices with no work being completed? I was told they Outlaw, do something called advanced billing. I was like what? Advanced billing? Bill before work has been approved or done? Keep in mind they told em they would not charge me if they did not find the problem with the backfiring. The timing chain was not defected nor was it the cause of the backfiring. So there should have been no charges, but they were sending bill after bill.
Maybe this was because they know what they will charge, since they know what they would do to a customer’s vehicle even if their approach was in error. Charge anyway and later recover from the error at the customers expense. Unbelievable!
Shortly after dropping off my car I and another customer, over heard one of their employees bragging about a late model sports car he says he got real cheap. The other customer and I sort of shrugged it off as hum wonder what that is about?