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Real Time Chronicle of my Body Shop Experience

How many of you actually own cats?


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Motomania

Member
Feb 12, 2017
25
11
St.Louis, MO
If you have ever been in an automotive plant paint line you would understand what I'm talking about. You simply are never going to get the level of adheasion that the factory does in an aftermarket environment.
-
I have several times, and I do understand what you're talking about. But, from a practical standpoint for a consumer; my point is just that a reputable bodyshop/dealership will offer a lifetime guarantee in writing on any work. (Using repair products and techniques warrantied for life by companies like DuPont, PPG, Sikkens, etc)
-
No big deal though; we can just kinda-sorta disagree on the issue. No biggee.:)
 
Last edited:

JRP3

Hyperactive Member
Aug 20, 2007
20,656
49,726
Central New York
If you have ever been in an automotive plant paint line you would understand what I'm talking about. You simply are never going to get the level of adheasion that the factory does in an aftermarket environment.
Probably not the same level of adhesion but I painted my plastic bumper over 4 years ago with just a regular 2 part epoxy primer and 2 part paint with no signs of any lifting. I don't think I used any flex additive either, and I'm far from a professional painter.
 

Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC
There has been brooding buzz on the web of late regarding Tesla and what seems to be their biggest weakness: body repair.

Here are is some of what I've seen:
And action from Tesla:
What a coincidence that my Model S should get damaged only a week ago.

Given the current situation, I think it will be very valuable for everyone to see a repair happen in real time.
The first post is me playing catch-up with the last few days. After that, you will see updates as they happen.

This will be an unbiased, factual, lightly comical account of my experience getting my Tesla Model S repaired.

Here we go!

Friday, March 10, 2017 - Day 1:

Having spent the afternoon around town and my car being parked for several hours, I came back to find the rear liftgate and bumper damaged on my Model S 70 D. I immediately called and reported a claim to my insurance company - GEICO.

Michele the Claims Adjuster was more upset than I was. She was one of those sexy-over-the-phone people that you hope to never meet in real life and have to face the disappoinment. After only 15 minutes of me divulging everything I've ever known or felt to her, I was told to be expecting a call from their local appraiser within the next 24 business hours. Hmm... 24 business hours. It's Friday early afternoon. So, I'll hear from the appraiser on Monday.

I get in contact with 3 Tesla Certified Body Shops:
  1. Dorn's Body and Paint - Mechanicsville, VA
    • Rob tells me to send pictures and he'll put a quote together for me
  2. Caldwell Collision - Charlotte, NC
    • Josh Caldwell warns me of wait times for parts.
    • I send over pictures.
  3. Caliber Collision - Charlotte, NC
    • Caliber has to see the car in person to give an estimate.
An hour later I have a quote from Caldwell Collision - $7855.70! They want to replace everything. I'm not the one who will a problem with it. GEICO on the other hand might. Let's see what the other shops have to say.

At 3:30pm on the same day I receive a call from a local number I didn't know. Seeing as how I was in a super-important top-secret meeting about the number of plies on our office t.p. and it couldn't possibly be my insurance company, I declined the call.

When I checked my messages at 4:32pm, I discovered that the mystery caller was Brian the insurance appraiser from GEICO.

Great! I call him back to find out his working hours are from 8am to 4:30pm - just missed him. No problem, we'll talk on Monday.

Monday March 13th, 2017 - Day 4:

Brian calls me at 9:12am. We schedule a time for him to stop by my office at 1pm on Tuesday the 14th.
Tomorrow, Tomorrow, I love you tomorrow! You're only a day away! - Yeah, I'm old. Shut up.

Tuesday March 14th, 2017 - Day 5:

When I get to the office I have a quote in my inbox from Dorn's Body and Paint - $6215.84!
It's like that time your buddy Steve from college got drunk and banged a hooker. Did Steve get dumped? No way.
Why would Sarah break up with Steve? He was drunk. He didn't know what he was doing. But you... you sober piece of [email protected]%&. Why would you let Steve do that? I just can't trust you any more.

In other words, my insurance company is definitely dropping me after this one.

Brian arrives at 12:56pm. After a brief inspection I give him the quotes and he is off doing his thing.
15 minutes later he is done with the appraisal - $1547.26. High hopes Brian, high hopes.

Brian informs me that he recently had another claim on a Tesla in town. It was sent to Caliber Collision in Charlotte, NC. The owner and the insurance company were very happy with the process and results. We'll see about that.

Wednesday March 15th, 2017 - Day 6:

I submit the estimate to Dorn's Paint and Body and immediately get a response from them that essentially says, "We don't like dealing with GEICO. They suck." Well, seeing as how I've only dealt with Sexy-Over-The-Phone Michele and Brian the Prompt, I disagree.

I get in touch with Brian and inform him that he has haters in Virginia. Non-Nonplussed, he tells me that I should at least give Caliber a shot. GEICO will pay for the towing there and back (on a flatbed, of course).

Fine, Brian. I'll do it just for you.

After a quick call to Caliber Collision, they ask for a copy of the GEICO estimate. I send that over and here we are.

NOW YOU'RE ALL CAUGHT UP.

Like I said, I'll post updates as they happen - all the way to the bitter end.

Now go feed your cats, weirdos.




You all may or may not be cat-weirdos, but judging by the direction this thread has taken you should all be checked for attention deficit disorder. Argue about paint somewhere else. BACK TO THE CHRONICLES!

Friday, March 17, 2017 - Day 8:

Only a week after the initial incident, I have an email in my inbox from GEICO's recommended shop. Caliber Collision Luxury in Charlotte, NC. I assume that "Luxury" means that they have a Nespresso machine instead of the standard "coffee pot from the 70's" in the waiting room. Otherwise, I will be very disappointed.

In the email David tells me he has already been in contact with Brian the Prompt. He subsequently asks for some pictures of the damaged area. I send them right over.

As I sat and daydreamed about all the different cartoon characters I've wanted to , I get an email from David at Caliber. He has ordered the parts and will schedule Jessica Rabbit in the shop as soon as he hears back from Tesla.

Sidenote: my Telsa Model S is named Jessica Rabbit. A voluptuous curvy red... So smooth, confident and sexy. I have been longing to be inside of her since the day I first laid eyes on her. No name could be more apropos.

Ok, Tesla. The ball is in your court.
 

Max*

Charging
Apr 8, 2015
6,672
3,835
NoVa
I have never heard of an insurance company requiring that you use wrecked body parts to fit the bill.

Insurance companies mostly quote aftermarket parts, when available. The Tesla has no real aftermarket parts, so they replace them with genuine.
-
Actually, virtually every insurance company policy allows for the use of used/recycled/Like Kind Quality parts. It's extremely common as most indicate they have to come off a same model year or newer vehicle, have less miles then the vehicle they are going on and be in excellent condition. (Little to nothing needs to be done to the part besides prep/paint)
Those are very different words. It's one thing to allow it, and if the customer is happy, more power to them.

It's a whole different ballgame for the insurance company to require the use of junkyard body parts. And again, I've never heard of an insurance company requiring it.
 

Rob_B

Member
Jun 17, 2016
16
31
Redmond
It's a whole different ballgame for the insurance company to require the use of junkyard body parts. And again, I've never heard of an insurance company requiring it.
USAA routinely insists on used parts in collision repairs, and has for years. And this isn't unique to USAA. That may be preferable to non-OEM parts, though. This wouldn't include the frequently-elusive rivets we've probably all read about, but it might help get a Tesla back on the road without waiting months for parts. I've had two vehicles where USAA insisted on used parts, within the past eight years.
 

Motomania

Member
Feb 12, 2017
25
11
St.Louis, MO
Those are very different words. It's one thing to allow it, and if the customer is happy, more power to them.

It's a whole different ballgame for the insurance company to require the use of junkyard body parts. And again, I've never heard of an insurance company requiring it.
-
You are correct in that those are very different words; under most circumstances.
-
But in terms of an insurance policy; which is a legally binding contract between the company and the insured, the word 'allows' means it's the company's discretion.
-
It may not be common knowledge; but dig into the language of most insurance companies and it's there.(typically under 'alternate part usage', sometimes used parts are referred to in the policy as recycled or LKQ - Like Kind Quality)
-
But; we can agree to disagree, it's all good.:)
 
Last edited:

CHG-ON

Still in love after all these miles
Jun 24, 2014
3,079
648
Santa Cruz Mountains, USA
My policy specifies OEM parts only. I insisted on it. And I only pay 200 more per year than on my 40K Acura.

And it ain't Geico. Don't trust 'em.

Great post and yes, cats are Satan's spawn.
 

Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC



You all may or may not be cat-weirdos, but judging by the direction this thread has taken you should all be checked for attention deficit disorder. Argue about paint somewhere else. BACK TO THE CHRONICLES!

Friday, March 17, 2017 - Day 8:

Only a week after the initial incident, I have an email in my inbox from GEICO's recommended shop. Caliber Collision Luxury in Charlotte, NC. I assume that "Luxury" means that they have a Nespresso machine instead of the standard "coffee pot from the 70's" in the waiting room. Otherwise, I will be very disappointed.

In the email David tells me he has already been in contact with Brian the Prompt. He subsequently asks for some pictures of the damaged area. I send them right over.

As I sat and daydreamed about all the different cartoon characters I've wanted to , I get an email from David at Caliber. He has ordered the parts and will schedule Jessica Rabbit in the shop as soon as he hears back from Tesla.

Sidenote: my Telsa Model S is named Jessica Rabbit. A voluptuous curvy red... So smooth, confident and sexy. I have been longing to be inside of her since the day I first laid eyes on her. No name could be more apropos.

Ok, Tesla. The ball is in your court.

I tried to rename this thread from "Real Time Chronicle of my Body Shop Experience" to "Lazy Piece Of $H!T Attempts To Do Something For Others But Is Too Selfish To Put Any Real Effort In And It Shows". Lucky for me the TMC Forum doesn't allow you to rename threads.

BACK TO THE CHRONICLES!

Thursday, March 23rd - Day 14:

In the afternoon I get an unexpected call. The dude on the phone had the most perfect non-regional accent, which ironically lead me to know the he was somewhere in California. It's Telsa. They have apparently just set up a team to coordinate the entire process for when a car needs to be repaired. He informs me that he has been in touch with Caliber Collision and has received their parts prder. When his parts team gets back tomorrow, he'll call and let me know if they will ship out then or on the following Monday. Sounds good.

Not long after, I get a call from David over at Caliber informing me that the parts had been ordered and will hopefully arrive soon.

Friday, March 24th - Day 15:

Non-regional Joe calls to inform me that all the parts have been shipped and I should be hearing from Caliber soon. You can tell they are working hard to fix this image problem they are having. WORKS FOR ME!

Throughout the following week there is miscellaneous communication

Wednesday, March 29th - Day 20:

Tesla Roadside Service calls me wondering when they can come pick up the car. Weird. I figured Geico would be coordinating the tow. Whatever. I tell them I need the car for another week. No problem. I just need to call them a day ahead of time and we'll get everything scheduled.

Tuesday, April 4th - Day 26:

I call Tesla Roadside to schedule the tow. They say they will get everything together and call me back. They are making all of this REALLY easy. Soon thereafter I get a call from Caliber Collision. They are a Tesla Approved Towing company as well. Great! Problem is, they're not going to be able to make it down my way until Friday. David explains that this works best because they're not going to be able to get to work on it until then anyways. Sounds good. Come and get Jessica Rabbit on Friday.

Friday, April 7th - Day 29:

Art is the nicest tow truck driver I have ever met, and somehow I have met several memorable tow truck drivers.

By far my favorite was Gary - the informal leader of the construction crew I worked on in high school. We worked together every day. Gary had no upper front teeth. One day we finally got around to the story behind it. It seems as though the good money in towing is in reposession because of the risk associated. Risk like being hit right in the face with a baseball bat. Gary wasn't afraid of anything... Well, anything except tomatoes. KFC once forgot to leave the tomatoes off his Twister. I had never heard a grown man scream like a 4 year old girl before. As he frantically cranked the Flatbed F350's manual window lever we nearly drove right in the ditch. Once the sandwich had been tossed out the window, Gary was out of breath and red in the face. Gary was awesome.

Anyway, back to Art. Art is the first guy to drive my car while I spectate. Art did me a huge favor. I finally got to see what everyone else sees. My beautiful Jessica Rabbit silently skimming down the street. What a sight.

I was sad to see her go, but I loved watching her leave.
 

Sir Guacamolaf

The good kind of fat
Mar 15, 2016
1,150
1,918
Not in a Tesla
Thanks for the update Jett. Especially interested in hearing your experiences with Geico, and if they give you hassles in getting the car repaired properly at proper price from a legit Tesla authorized shop. So far looks like no $ out of your pocket, yet! Or is it pay and then hope to get reimbursed?
 

okcorral

Member
Jun 29, 2015
48
15
Los Angeles, CA
Thanks for the update Jett. Especially interested in hearing your experiences with Geico, and if they give you hassles in getting the car repaired properly at proper price from a legit Tesla authorized shop. So far looks like no $ out of your pocket, yet! Or is it pay and then hope to get reimbursed?

I've heard a lot of poor experiences with Geico including my own. My wife was hit by a driver who was 100% at fault and even ticketed. We sighed in relief the other driver had insurance. But little did we realize how bad Geico is. We finally got it settled out but was a pain in the arse. Good luck!
 

Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC
Thanks for the update Jett. Especially interested in hearing your experiences with Geico, and if they give you hassles in getting the car repaired properly at proper price from a legit Tesla authorized shop. So far looks like no $ out of your pocket, yet! Or is it pay and then hope to get reimbursed?
It seems that GEICO has been on top of things. I say "it seems" because they are the ones I have had the least contact with. They did lowball the initial repair estimate, but the body shops all highballed it. Definitely expected behavior on both ends.

In terms of "out of pocket", I will pay my deductible directly to Caliber. They will then negotiate with GEICO for any supplemental monies needed to repair the vehicle.

BACK TO THE CHRONICLES! (In the next post...)
 
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Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC
I tried to rename this thread from "Real Time Chronicle of my Body Shop Experience" to "Lazy Piece Of $H!T Attempts To Do Something For Others But Is Too Selfish To Put Any Real Effort In And It Shows". Lucky for me the TMC Forum doesn't allow you to rename threads.

BACK TO THE CHRONICLES!

Thursday, March 23rd - Day 14:

In the afternoon I get an unexpected call. The dude on the phone had the most perfect non-regional accent, which ironically lead me to know the he was somewhere in California. It's Telsa. They have apparently just set up a team to coordinate the entire process for when a car needs to be repaired. He informs me that he has been in touch with Caliber Collision and has received their parts prder. When his parts team gets back tomorrow, he'll call and let me know if they will ship out then or on the following Monday. Sounds good.

Not long after, I get a call from David over at Caliber informing me that the parts had been ordered and will hopefully arrive soon.

Friday, March 24th - Day 15:

Non-regional Joe calls to inform me that all the parts have been shipped and I should be hearing from Caliber soon. You can tell they are working hard to fix this image problem they are having. WORKS FOR ME!

Throughout the following week there is miscellaneous communication

Wednesday, March 29th - Day 20:

Tesla Roadside Service calls me wondering when they can come pick up the car. Weird. I figured Geico would be coordinating the tow. Whatever. I tell them I need the car for another week. No problem. I just need to call them a day ahead of time and we'll get everything scheduled.

Tuesday, April 4th - Day 26:

I call Tesla Roadside to schedule the tow. They say they will get everything together and call me back. They are making all of this REALLY easy. Soon thereafter I get a call from Caliber Collision. They are a Tesla Approved Towing company as well. Great! Problem is, they're not going to be able to make it down my way until Friday. David explains that this works best because they're not going to be able to get to work on it until then anyways. Sounds good. Come and get Jessica Rabbit on Friday.

Friday, April 7th - Day 29:

Art is the nicest tow truck driver I have ever met, and somehow I have met several memorable tow truck drivers.

By far my favorite was Gary - the informal leader of the construction crew I worked on in high school. We worked together every day. Gary had no upper front teeth. One day we finally got around to the story behind it. It seems as though the good money in towing is in reposession because of the risk associated. Risk like being hit right in the face with a baseball bat. Gary wasn't afraid of anything... Well, anything except tomatoes. KFC once forgot to leave the tomatoes off his Twister. I had never heard a grown man scream like a 4 year old girl before. As he frantically cranked the Flatbed F350's manual window lever we nearly drove right in the ditch. Once the sandwich had been tossed out the window, Gary was out of breath and red in the face. Gary was awesome.

Anyway, back to Art. Art is the first guy to drive my car while I spectate. Art did me a huge favor. I finally got to see what everyone else sees. My beautiful Jessica Rabbit silently skimming down the street. What a sight.

I was sad to see her go, but I loved watching her leave.

Monday, April 10th - Day 32:

At 9:06 AM I receive the following email:

-------------
Mr. Black,
Good morning sir. I just wanted to follow up Friday’s conversation this morning. There was no additional damage found, just a couple of small parts that were need for the repair. We are looking at no later than the end of the week to get the car completed and back to you. I hope that this is in line with your expectation or exceeding it. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks
David Kaye
---------------

These guys are definitely on top of things. Also, I can't figure out how to get the font back to normal size, which seems to be about 3.5pt. Deal with it.

Tuesday, April 11th - Day 33:


At 12:02PM I receive the following email:

-------------​
Mr. Black,
I just wanted to update you that the body repairs have been completed and that your Tesla has moved to the refinish stage of the process. I will update you again tomorrow. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks
David Kaye

-------------

That was fast. I would be ecstatic to have Jessica Rabbit back by this weekend. There is a big golf tournament this weekend in my hometown. I don't really care about golf, but I do care about girls that act like they care about golf.

Let's see what happens.​
 

Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC
Monday, April 10th - Day 32:

At 9:06 AM I receive the following email:

-------------
Mr. Black,
Good morning sir. I just wanted to follow up Friday’s conversation this morning. There was no additional damage found, just a couple of small parts that were need for the repair. We are looking at no later than the end of the week to get the car completed and back to you. I hope that this is in line with your expectation or exceeding it. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks
David Kaye
---------------

These guys are definitely on top of things. Also, I can't figure out how to get the font back to normal size, which seems to be about 3.5pt. Deal with it.

Tuesday, April 11th - Day 33:


At 12:02PM I receive the following email:

-------------​
Mr. Black,
I just wanted to update you that the body repairs have been completed and that your Tesla has moved to the refinish stage of the process. I will update you again tomorrow. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks
David Kaye

-------------

That was fast. I would be ecstatic to have Jessica Rabbit back by this weekend. There is a big golf tournament this weekend in my hometown. I don't really care about golf, but I do care about girls that act like they care about golf.

Let's see what happens.​

THE CONCLUSION OF THE CHRONICLES!

Thursday, April 13th - Day 35:

I get a call from David at Caliber letting me know that Art was loading up Jessica Rabbit and would be down my way by mid-day. I am ecstatic.

I was without my car for only 6 days.

Considering that I began this "body shop" journey the week after Tesla implemented their new "Body Shop Advocacy" program, I was sure that things would be "sticky" at best.

That was not the case.

It was made abundantly clear that Tesla and Caliber were interested in only one thing - making sure that I was satisfied with the process and end result.

Jessica Rabbit was restored to her OEM glory.

I hope that Tesla and all of their affiliated body shops work as hard for all of their customers as they did for me.
 

luvacoustic

Member
May 23, 2017
45
149
Greenville SC
I'm in Greenville and about to use Caliber Luxury in Charlotte to repair where someone swiped me while they were cutting corners in a parking lot. Did Caliber arrange for the car to be towed or did Tesla or Geico? That would save me around 7 hours doing two round trips!
 

Jett Black

Member
Jun 14, 2016
12
51
Charleston, SC
I'm in Greenville and about to use Caliber Luxury in Charlotte to repair where someone swiped me while they were cutting corners in a parking lot. Did Caliber arrange for the car to be towed or did Tesla or Geico? That would save me around 7 hours doing two round trips!
Caliber has their own truck with the capability to tow Teslas. Talk to David at Caliber. If I recall correctly, they were able to wrap the towing fees in to the invoice charged to my insurance company. Good luck!
 
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