(Topic ID: 205640)

The Nifty Playboy Bulldog Incident


By Sticky

1 year ago



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  • 1,375 posts
  • 220 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 1 year ago by Who-Dey
  • Topic is favorited by 34 Pinsiders

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Topic index (key posts)

32 key posts have been marked in this topic, showing the first 20

Post #30 @NiftyLED lists the customer's machine for sale on Ebay. Posted by Sticky (1 year ago)

Post #154 @NiftyLED offers to buy the machine for $800. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #186 Additional screenshots from @Sticky Posted by Sticky (1 year ago)

Post #219 @NiftyLED posts a screenshot. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #289 @NiftyLED list of parts used and services performed. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #347 @NiftyLED offers to settle for $3000 instead of $4200. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #562 Screenshots of @NiftyLED 's side of the conversation. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #670 Pictures of the completed machine. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #682 Pictures of the machine before work was performed. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)

Post #690 Nate from NiftyLED tells his version of the story. Posted by NiftyLED (1 year ago)


Topic indices are generated from key posts and maintained by Pinside Editors. For more information, or to become an editor yourself read this post!

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There are 1374 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 28.
11
#1 1 year ago

I don't even know what to say about this.

I chose OCpinballrepair/niftyled for some repair and restoration work on my 1978 Bally Playboy based on what I found on pinside about them. We came to terms over two years ago (yes, TWO YEARS) that the restore would cost $1850 cash. It was supposed to take less than six months.

Since he was taking so long I told him to go ahead and do a board update he recommended for $500 as some boards on these Bally's tend to go out and he asked me if I wanted touch up work done for a couple hundred bucks. I said fine.

Finally, he contacts me a couple weeks back and says the machine is done. I say great and ask about the final total and texts me $4200. That is more than double what we originally agreed to and certainly more than an additional $700!

He stops responding and suddenly I see my machine for sale on a local Facebook group I fortunately follow. The post is attached.

Gentlemen, is this not theft and extortion? He asked for a higher price than agreed to once the work was done and he was holding the machine hostage and now he lists my machine for sale at $5000? This is insane!

I fully intend to contact my attorney in the morning as I'm not going to allow him to hold my property hostage and then sell it. I'll file a corona police department report as well as that is his location.

Any advice?

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#2 1 year ago

What a tool. Do you have documentation of what you agreed to? I would think as a non-lawyer that would put this to bed pretty quickly.

#3 1 year ago
Quoted from VolunteerPin:

What a tool. Do you have documentation of what you agreed to? I would think as a non-lawyer that would put this to bed pretty quickly.

Yeah basically all our correspondence through text. Plus e-mails and so forth.

What a tool is right.

#4 1 year ago

Wow... thats.. Wow. What is going through his mind? What a total ass.
Talk about bad publicity..

#5 1 year ago
Quoted from Wiggy:

Wow... thats.. Wow. What is going through his mind? What a total ass.
Talk about bad publicity..

More than that. I mean I have his cell, paypal info, domain, the exact same pics he is advertising with, two years of e-mail, txt, etc.

I go to the police and this ends ends with him having a criminal record. This isn't about the money at this point.

#6 1 year ago

As of this moment, he HAS stolen your machine. Luckily for you, at the price that he is trying to fence the goods, I doubt it will change hands again(even in crazy California market) before you get a chance to proceed with legal action.

#7 1 year ago

Don't go see lawyers for small amounts of money since just a few hours will be $1000.

I think the police will not do much here since they may consider this more of a complex business dealing. He didn't break into your house and steal it.

Small claims court is I'm guessing your best bet. Document carefully every last piece of correspondence youself relating to the agree upon price and timelines. Then file a claim yourself, show up on date, and tell it to the judge who will make the call.

Quickly get unemotional about it and just go through the process above as I've found getting worked up about it will cost you ten times as much in stress & lost productivity. Life is short, you win some and you lose some - in the end you will get justice anyway one way or another if you go to small claims. Everyone eventually has to go through stuff like this so good luck.

#8 1 year ago
Quoted from spinal:

Don't go see lawyers for small amounts of money since just a few hours will be $1000.
I think the police will not do much here since they may consider this more of a complex business dealing. He didn't break into your house and steal it.
Small claims court is I'm guessing your best bet. Document carefully every last piece of correspondence youself relating to the agree upon price and timelines. Then file a claim yourself, show up on date, and tell it to the judge who will make the call.
Quickly get unemotional about it and just go through the process above as I've found getting worked up about it will cost you ten times as much in stress & lost productivity. Life is short, you win some and you lose some - in the end you will get justice anyway one way or another if you go to small claims. Good luck.

Small claims is the best bet but I see nothing wrong with bringing a police report with me to court.

I can tell you this he won't be able to list it for sale anywhere on the internet while I'm watching. Plus Google will forever have his business and name tied to this thread.

#9 1 year ago

If he has possession of your property he can do anything he wants with it and I know this must be maddening. Whatever he does, he will owe you $ in the end and it won't look good I small claims when you show him the ad.

From his perspective he might be justifying the sale by claiming that he has a non-paying client for the work he's done so he's going to recoup his losses. But if there is nothing on paper (a detailed contract) detailing his rights to seize your property and sell in the case of non-payment for his work, then he will have to answer for that.

#10 1 year ago

He has another business called niftyled and there are a ton of pics of my machine on the instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/niftyled/

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#11 1 year ago
Quoted from spinal:

If he has possession of your property he can do anything he wants with it and I know this must be maddening. Whatever he does, he will owe you $ in the end and it won't look good I small claims when you show him the ad.
From his perspective he might be justifying the sale by claiming that he has a non-paying client for the work he's done so he's going to recoup his losses. But if there is nothing on paper (a detailed contract) detailing his rights to seize your property and sell in the case of non-payment for his work, then he will have to answer for that.

He knows exactly what he's doing. Stealing it because I didn't immediately jump at paying the inflated amount he sent me.

The last text was me literally saying I expected the price to be what we agreed to plus the board and touch up.

After this he lists it for sale without ever saying a word about it?

Anyway, whatever, I'm just going through the social media accounts saving everything for documentation.

#12 1 year ago

Just when I thought I’ve seen it all. Man this sucks. Hopefully you can get your game back.

#13 1 year ago

Anyway, going through the social media account my machine pops up and amusingly someone says just deliver it to the customer already.

I went back through the dates and it's been two years and three months since he got my machine. I was way too lenient and I should have gone with my gut but it's ok just need to keep collecting evidence. This will work itself out. Just sucks as it actually looks great:

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#14 1 year ago

He's the guy on the far right in this photo so I'm sure there are some local pinheads who know him

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#15 1 year ago

Is this the same NiftyLED that advertises on The Pinball Podcast?

#16 1 year ago
Quoted from Rush1169:

Is this the same NiftyLED that advertises on The Pinball Podcast?

I believe so, yes.

#17 1 year ago

Wow, I would love to hear the other side of the story....

#18 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

He's the guy on the far right in this photo so I'm sure there are some local pinheads who know him

ryanclaytor is that you in this photo? Can you reach out to help this guy out?

#19 1 year ago
Quoted from cosmokramer:

Wow, I would love to hear the other side of the story....

You might think there is another side but here are the last texts. No response. Nothing. I tell him I'd like to work it out but that the price is way too high and I'm out of town this weekend so delivery was to be that next weekend. I was very reasonable all things considered.

He never said another word and listed it for sale. It's obvious what transpired. He never even asked if he could go over budget. Go look on the Instagram feed and he's making his own decisions as to what to do and not even asking me if it's ok! The only added items specified were the board and touch up which is $700 more.

He tried to take advantage of me after being a year and a half late and then tried to quickly sell it hoping to get $5k for my machine behind my back.

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#20 1 year ago

Sad, I hate when I read this stuff... You try and be nice being more than patient and it seems you always get screwed.

Hopefully this will work out for you and he will respond accordingly.

#21 1 year ago
Quoted from Blacksun:

Sad, I hate when I read this stuff... You try and be nice being more than patient and it seems you always get screwed.
Hopefully this will work out for you and he will respond accordingly.

I guess all my experience in pinball has been so positive with people from pinside that I didn't mind it took so long for this work. I even told him, hey, I'll wait if necessary for quality work. Clearly my machine wasn't a priority but that's ok. I get it that people are busy and to me this is a fun hobby.

This is the first time I've ever experienced anything like this in Pinball. Everyone else I dealt with especially from Pinside had such positive enthusiasm and wanted to share it. This guy wanted to scam me.

I'm a younger guy who is doing pretty well for himself so I guess he saw me as a target.

13
#22 1 year ago

Guess I'll steer clear of nifty led... Almost bought from that site.

#23 1 year ago

What's odd about this is from your last text exchange, it seems like the negotiations didn't exactly hit a brick wall, there was dialog going on about the job.

Hopefully cooler heads can prevail. Good luck.

#24 1 year ago

Is this the place associated with surfsidedetail?
My apologies if not...

#25 1 year ago
Quoted from cosmokramer:

Is this the place associated with surfsidedetail?
My apologies if not...

No and by the way I had a fantastic transaction with surfsidedetail

Great guy and was completely up front with me. Even gave a discount once he learned I was a pinsider. Very happy with my purchase from him.

#26 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

He has another business called niftyled and there are a ton of pics of my machine on the instagram account: https://www.instagram.com/niftyled/

Sorry, a little off-topic, but..
While I'm no graphic designer, I did often work up various business card designes for companies..
I'm really confused by this. WTH does a basket of fries have to do with LEDs?

#27 1 year ago
Quoted from frolic:

What's odd about this is from your last text exchange, it seems like the negotiations didn't exactly hit a brick wall, there was dialog going on about the job.
Hopefully cooler heads can prevail. Good luck.

I can post a few of the texts before but you get the idea. We go over the original $1850 budget and I say I'm out of town so I expected a follow up the next week.

I didn't hear anything and now it's listed for sale by him for $5k...

#28 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

No and by the way I had a fantastic transaction with surfsidedetail
Great guy and was completely up front with me. Even gave a discount once he learned I was a pinsider. Very happy with my purchase from him.

Glad to hear, I was reluctant to ask as I didnt want to bring him into this...but thought he could help if it was...

#31 1 year ago

So the original budget was 1850. Then throw in the 500 for boards and 200 for "touch-ups" brings it to 2550 you were expecting but he also did LED displays for 300, LEDs for 125, chrome for 700 and plastic set for 150 so that's 1275 in addition to the 2550 for a total of 3825.... there is 375 not accounted for! So are you saying he took it upon himself to do the chrome, plastic set and LEDs on his own and never mentioned it to you?

#32 1 year ago

I don't want to comment too much without hearing the other side of the story but what sticks out to me is the chrome job. Was there ever any conversation about chroming? That is a big ticket item to just add on without permission first? Do you have anything in writing for an estimate for work to be performed?

I really feel for you and hopefully this situation can be resolved, $5000 for a restored Playboy is nuts!

Oh crap I almost forgot to add the popcorn GIF....

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#33 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

He has it listed on Ebay as well for $5500: ebay.com link » 1978 Original Playboy Pinball By Bally Restored Beauty Works 100

Is there anyway to go through eBay to report the game as stolen?

#34 1 year ago
Quoted from meSz:

So the original budget was 1850. Then throw in the 500 for boards and 200 for "touch-ups" brings it to 2550 you were expecting but he also did LED displays for 300, LEDs for 125, chrome for 700 and plastic set for 150 so that's 1275 in addition to the 2550 for a total of 3825.... there is 375 not accounted for! So are you saying he took it upon himself to do the chrome, plastic set and LEDs on his own and never mentioned it to you?

The chrome, plastic, and LED's were all in the original budget. He just decided to charge me more and I guess isn't even good at math as you point out.

I would never have agreed to $4200 for that work. We agreed to an $1850 budget and then he jacked up the price when he was finally done. I certainly didn't tell him to list my property for sale.

12
#35 1 year ago

He just texted me saying 'you made it sound like you couldn't pay.'

Odd, isn't it? Especially after he mentioned my Porsche in the garage a few times which I'm sure had no bearing on him jacking up the price...

#36 1 year ago

Pretty sticky situation.

#37 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

He just texted me saying 'you made it sound like you couldn't pay.'

Not sure what he is thinking? There is a process in California to collect a debt, and it does not include taking someone's personal property to settle such debt. You have the upper hand on this one.

#38 1 year ago
Quoted from chuckwurt:

Is there anyway to go through eBay to report the game as stolen?

Just tried and don't see this option. Apparently you are supposed to contact law enforcement.

#39 1 year ago
Quoted from pinmister:

Not sure what he is thinking? There is a process in California to collect a debt, and it does not include taking someone's personal property to settle such debt. You have the upper hand on this one.

We know what he was thinking. He was thinking of pocketing $5 grand and hoping I let it go. So now this is his flimsy excuse.

52
#40 1 year ago
Quoted from Buzz:

Pretty sticky situation.

Typical with used Playboys.

#41 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

Just tried and don't see this option. Apparently you are supposed to contact law enforcement.

scroll down and just above the description field there is a REPORT ITEM .... click on it!

#42 1 year ago
Quoted from meSz:

scroll down and just above the description field there is a REPORT ITEM .... click on it!

I did but no option for stolen once reporting...

#43 1 year ago

2 years and 3 months? That is nuts. He should not have taken possession of the game until he was close to starting it. I have had full blown bally restores done for way less with clear coated playfield. $500 for board work? You can buy all new boards for $500.

#44 1 year ago
Quoted from Sticky:

I did but no option for stolen once reporting...

Yeah its there but to your point it states that you have to be law enforcement to use it! Just like ebay ...... they dont want to lose the fees off the sale if they can help it!

#45 1 year ago

You NEED to call law enforcement NOW. Do the work to get a police report filed and be sure that you provide print outs/ scans off 100% of your communication with the guy.

It appears you have stuff well kept track of and this guy flat out stole your game and is trying to sell it.

Take screen captures of EVERYHTHING you find on it as evidence. The more work you do for the cops the better chance they will be able to get something done.

#46 1 year ago

I would add niftyled in your title also. Most folks around here know that name over orange county pinball.

10
#47 1 year ago

This would be a prime time case for Judge Judy.... I can hear her now " So sir you indicated you could perform a partial restore on a pinball machine for $1850 within a 6 month time frame and now over two years later you are asking for $4200 with nothing in writing?" Eye's roll as she looks over to her bailiff, and they nod in agreement.

#48 1 year ago

Police report should be first regardless of the outcome (if they can help or not) it just adds to your case.

#49 1 year ago
Quoted from woody76:

I would add niftyled in your title also. Most folks around here know that name over orange county pinball.

for sure! Always worth making sure you get the thread on fire and get the word out. If the guy has even a speck of understanding on how business works he will see the thread, contact you privately to ensure you get the machine for EXACTLY the quoted price of the restoration, and then you can return to say all is resolved.

If he is stupid he sinks his business.

#50 1 year ago

5k for a playboy will sink his business too. Once I see a price like that I'm not going to bother looking any further and anything priced right I'm going to assume is a piece of shit.

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