The Official Livewire Guitars Thread

Discussion in 'Dealers & Group Buys' started by michael777, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. Cloudy

    Cloudy Dunvegan Guitars Contributor

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    its disgusting that people can get away with .... like this. A 'work order' shouldn't be a free excuse to hold other peoples assets for basically an infinite amount of time. Absolutely ridiculous.
     
  2. ddcmiller

    ddcmiller SS.org Regular

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    Do not use Livewire guitars for anything unless you are OK with never getting your stuff back. Back in 2013 I commissioned Livewire guitars (Michael Carballo) to do some fretboard swaps for me on my RG570 necks after a glowing review form his friend Sebastian. He was paid to do 2 vine inlays. I sent him both necks and two bodies I acquired from Chris Mai at Mai-guitars. Micheal was supposed to fit the neck pockets to the necks I sent him. He then ran into nothing but personal problems. Every time he had another problem I told him take your time get through it I can wait. One problem after another one delay after another. At one point I told him to send my stuff back and issue me a refund. He told me I had 2 options let him finish or get my stuff back as is but either way I was not getting a refund. I told him to finish. This job was to take 4 months and I caused one delay by insisting that the stem in the inlay be real wood as were the originals and not acrylic as Michael was used to doing. Fast forward to almost 2 years now and still nothing has been returned. I finally came unglued when I went to Livewire's Facebook business page and found under hours of operation "permanently closed". I immediately sent an email demanding my stuff back at whatever stage of completion they were at. He agreed that he would send my stuff back as is the next day. That was 4 months ago. Since then he has ceased all communications with all of his customers which tally up to almost 20 of us waiting on our stuff.
    However since we have a contract (work order) and it is only an estimate for completion it is not criminal it is a civil complaint.This is what my local sheriff and Michael's Sheriff and fraud agent told all of us. Which gives him the right keep our stuff for the rest of his life. Now he has claimed to his local Sheriff that he is trying to get a loan to be able to afford to send our stuff back even though we have all paid for return shipping. And do not be fooled all of us have paid in full for a year or more. On top of that we have all offered to pay return shipping again in order to get our stuff back and agreed to no refunds. So why he is trying to get a loan I am not sure.

    Sorry for the long post but I feel this is the only way I am going to have a chance of getting my stuff back since I and many others can't afford to sue the guy.

    So if you know Michael and Katie Carballo please let them know every time I see a post asking about Livewire guitars I will be there to tell this story and insure that they don't get any further buisness. People need to know that if you send them your stuff plan on never getting it back.

    And for anybody else, all of your work orders better have the clause "all items either purchased or customer supplied will be shipped back to the customer within 48 hours at customers request either finished or unfinished". This is the only way you can get around this crap that these people are pulling on their customers.
     
  3. SeditiousDissent

    SeditiousDissent i drove bus

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    That is definitely a major bummer. Unfortunately, you aren't the first person who has lost their hard earned money and guitars to that scam artist. Oddly enough, I was just reading through this thread earlier this afternoon.

    The Official Livewire Guitars Thread
     
  4. ddcmiller

    ddcmiller SS.org Regular

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    Yea, I am posting on that thread also as are many of the customers Livewire has screwed over with this scam.
     
  5. MrTeatime

    MrTeatime SS.org Regular

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    I can't see why he would keep unfinished guitar parts laying around...
     
  6. ddcmiller

    ddcmiller SS.org Regular

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  7. UnderTheSign

    UnderTheSign SS.org Regular

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    Eh, a smart thing to do is always to look up the most recent responses to see what's going on in someones business right now. Not really buried if you ask me.
     
  8. Webmaestro

    Webmaestro Ibanez Fanatic Contributor

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    Agreed. Typical user behavior is to start reading the latest post first--especially on a longer thread like this one. So, I think the OP is okay as far as visibility goes.
     
  9. ddcmiller

    ddcmiller SS.org Regular

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    I agree with both of you. And that was what I did and all was fantastic reviews were great and I pulled the trigger and sent my stuff. Then his life fell apart and i waited. Then I waited long enough and asked for my stuff back he agreed then stopped communicating and hasn't sent my stuff back.

    If you have any suggestions other than suing him please advise me. I tried helping him out during his troubles by updating potential customers of his back log and to be patient while waiting for email responses. But the lack of communication and refusal to send back my stuff even with the offer of paying even more return shipping to help him out has really upset me. We all need to know where are stuff is and what it is going to take to get it back. I know I am coming off as a douchebag but damn it I feel like someone broke into my house and robbed me. How would you feel?
     
  10. ddcmiller

    ddcmiller SS.org Regular

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    Just so everyone knows where my head was before Livewire closed their doors this was the last request i sent him before I saw the "permanently closed" status on his Facebook business page. I would have stuck to this if he would have responded but he did not. The last we communicated and were on good terms was last Oct. Tell me if I'm out of line being upset with the situation.

    "Michael, I am not trying to be an asshole or break your balls here. But, I need an update on my projects. It has been 4 months since the last update and you assured me that it would take less than 2 months to finish both necks. What I need are pics of the necks and bodies to see exactly what stage they are in. I'm sorry but I can't accept a verbal "they're almost done and will ship next week" answer this time around you've already given me that twice. If you need more time I am more than willing to talk to you about that and come up with a plan with you. I don't care if they are 2 hours from completion or barely started I am OK with either scenario as long as i can see exactly where they are at. I would like pics to see and then we can go from there and discuss the next steps to get us to a concrete completion date. I know we can continue to have a good working relationship here but I need you to give me something to keep that going. Again I'm not trying to be an asshole or bust your balls so please do not get upset at this request".
     
  11. NemesisTheory

    NemesisTheory SS.org Regular

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    Dude, you are so not coming off as a douchebag. You are justified in being extremely pissed off at the situation. I was in the same boat. I apparently just got lucky in getting my guitar back and maybe I was the last person to get his stuff back. I dunno. I was upset when I got it in the condition I did but just glad I got it and knew I could finish it the rest of the way. The problem with these kind of situations is that as paying customers, we somehow feel guilt at expecting or demanding to get what we paid for! I would try to periodically appeal to him to get your stuff back, but I wouldn't expect it. I didn't think I would get mine after a while at all. I had almost resolved that I was going to have to walk away from it at a certain point. Its just... when does persistence lead to madness?

     
  12. Jesse11

    Jesse11 SS.org Regular

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    You guys want to read something really humorous? This is an email that Michael sent to one of his "customers" on February 12th. This guy had not sent any parts but had paid Michael in full to source and swirl a guitar. The guy had initiated a dispute with his credit card company, that's what Michael is talking about.

    Michael seems to truly believe that HE is the victim here. If he's a victim of anyone, it's only his wife. You can read here or on various Facebook pages how completely flexible and understanding his customers have been. Also keep in mind that at the time of this email, approximately one person had really gotten fed up and trashed the guy.

    This is pretty incoherent but follow along.

     
  13. Jesse11

    Jesse11 SS.org Regular

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    By the way Michael, if you're reading this and want to eventually finish my guitar you still have, I'll be happy to pay you in full for it as soon as it's done.
     
  14. macavelle50

    macavelle50 SS.org Regular

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    Michael, bro why did you steal my money? Why have I not received my guitar after 2 years of waiting? Why are you now ignoring my emails? Can I at least get a refund if you are not going to send me my guitar?
     
  15. macavelle50

    macavelle50 SS.org Regular

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    I read some of the posts here and it seems that Michael lost respect for his customers and seems to think that we are a bunch of jerks. Let me ask everyone here. I ordered a guitar body from him and this is what I received. Would ANYONE be happy with this?

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...44629431.1073741832.1195982646&type=3&theater

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?...44629431.1073741832.1195982646&type=3&theater

    He told me that this was normal for the way that he does his swirls and that it was not a scratch in the paint (that he clear coated over without repairing). I was extremely unhappy with this (if it had been on the back I probably would have just dealt with it) so I sent it back...and apparently now I am a jerk. He didn't send me anything back (which is what I wanted - I only wanted one done correctly) and then refused to refund my money. Now I am out..um - its been so long that I forgot how much I paid...I think I paid him $375.

    You tell me what you think! Am I an ********?
     
  16. AxeHappy

    AxeHappy SS.org Regular

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    That is normal for swirling. Marbling is a very un-controlled art form.

    Sorry you didn't like it, and him keeping your guitar is completely unacceptable, but if you're going for a swirl...be prepared to accept stuff like that.
     
  17. oracles

    oracles Australian in Canda

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    I've spoken to a lot of other people in the same situation, and you seem to have come out of it the best thus far, not that it's any consolation, or a reason for you not to be upset. I'm in over $1k and well over two years at this point, and there's many others in the same spot.

    Unfortunately not liking the swirl is part of the risk you take when you commission one, that's all there is to it. I don't blame Michael for not giving you the exact swirl pattern you wanted, but I do hold him accountable for disappearing with everyone's instruments and money. You're not the only one who has been burned here.
     
  18. macavelle50

    macavelle50 SS.org Regular

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    A scratch is so not normal for a swirl. What you are looking at in those pictures is a scratch in the black paint where something hit it and then it was cleared over. That's horrible work. By the time I'm done building that guitar I would have had close to 2000$ into it and to have to deal with a scratch under the clear on the front....NO WAY. I have 28 guitars and 9 of them are swirls and that is not normal. But whatever. I have an awesome guitar built by pearle guitars. From my experience their work is a lot better.

    Perle Guitars


    Good luck to everyone.
     
  19. MrTeatime

    MrTeatime SS.org Regular

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    I didn't see at first what you were showing.
    Mine too had a small chip in the yellow paint on the upper horn between painting and clearing.
    The only thing I regret on mine : I was sold a "better than factory clear coat" and the clear coat is quite thin compared to any of my other guitars. But I'd rather have a thin clear coat than no guitar at all at the moment
     
  20. AxeHappy

    AxeHappy SS.org Regular

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    To be fair, there are many people who would consider a thin clear coat an improvement.

    I am not among them, but there are a lot of them.
     

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