Robert M posted:
michel posted:
Chris Kleber, KitMan Motors posted:

For those that are interested:     this is public information on website

I just checked the City of San Marcos, CA website  business license division

JPS Classics LLC is listed with  an ACTIVE business license in San Marcos

License BL18-029631  that was issued on 3/12/2018 for 1 year.

Owner is listed as Patrick Crane , Co owner is listed as John Steele

So if Patrick Crane is co-owner why doesn't he come on this forum and enlighten us?

BTW I live 18 minutes from their shop. Have not been there. just going by address posted here.

Thanks Michel. I didn't know you lived in San Diego since there's no information on your profile. Let us know what's happening.

I live in Oceanside (North San Diego).  In will try and swing by there today. 

Robert M posted:
michel posted:
Chris Kleber, KitMan Motors posted:

For those that are interested:     this is public information on website

I just checked the City of San Marcos, CA website  business license division

JPS Classics LLC is listed with  an ACTIVE business license in San Marcos

License BL18-029631  that was issued on 3/12/2018 for 1 year.

Owner is listed as Patrick Crane , Co owner is listed as John Steele

So if Patrick Crane is co-owner why doesn't he come on this forum and enlighten us?

BTW I live 18 minutes from their shop. Have not been there. just going by address posted here.

Thanks Michel. I didn't know you lived in San Diego since there's no information on your profile. Let us know what's happening.

Robert, thanks for reminding me, just updated my profile.

This will be a rare comment from me (you all know that I have never been a big fan of John Steele, going back to when Curt Scott shined the light of exposure on him in the 1990's) but I believe there is a legitimate health issue at work here. 

Last year, at Carlisle, I rode around with Tom Marantz in his JPS-built 356 coupe all weekend and Tom related to me that half-way through his build, John had one or more serious heart attacks which laid him up for quite a spell.  That alone would be a major setback for a 1 or 2 person shop.  

As it turns out, Tom is a recently retired Cardiac Specialist who understood completely the extent of John's heart problems and gave him a lot of slack in completing the build (as well as coaching him through some of the rougher patches, I guess).  Coming back from something like that can be a long hard road, even for a person much younger than me or John - Hell, I've been stricken by illnesses less severe than a heart attack and sometimes it took me a long time to get back to a new "normal".  I honestly do not know what's going on out there, but I suspect that this time John saw it as time to begin to bow out and brought in someone to sell the business to while he stayed involved as a "consultant" or something.  Just guessing, but that's what I might do.

Anyway, the ultimate answer is to get someone over to the new place in San Marcos and get introduced to Patrick Crane and just chat about what's going on from his perspective, then swing it around to expectations of what's happening with any cars in queue, just to help reset expectations.  Lastly, I would invite Patrick to have a presence on here, not to beat him up, but to get him included in the conversations - much like as has happened with Greg Leach and Carey Hines and a few others.

Anybody want to volunteer to be a "Long Range Recon Guy"??

Man (men), I am so grateful. You don't know. Grateful for decent people. The help and advice has been great. I assure you I could see the handwriting a long time ago and have documented well and, with help, made sure I covered a lot of bases. And we have not been idle by any means. What is "missing" here has always been stability. We asked John to deliver a car per the contract or refund. It's a simple matter and he simply did not do either. I always tried to work with him, not delay his production, and staying focused on the matter at hand. I got excuses and rants about his accomplishments. It is and was just weird. People want things to change. People ignore the facts because of a shiny new dream. Some things will not change and must end.

So I ask the simple question. Why doesn't a man tell a client(s) he is moving his shop...taking on a partner...and establishing an LLC? And like it was suggested, why isn't this partner clearing matters up? I don't envy him. I've been on top of the activities for some time. We have been watching maybe even from a prime location. I just can't elaborate now.

Times like these requires one to stay focused. Not to be swayed by distraction tactics regarding personal life, a new website, tales of success stories, etc. True or not, it's more of the same. This is a business transaction. And if a business, regardless of the name or location changes conducts itself consistently one way, you just might be able to predict something from that. Like the song says, "I can see clearly now." I am prepared to lose my money and expenses but not without seeing the matter to an end. Damages often far exceed contracts. I am not prepared to go quietly. Again, all I asked from John was a car right then or money right then. His choice was simple.

Gordon Nichols posted:

This will be a rare comment from me (you all know that I have never been a big fan of John Steele, going back to when Curt Scott shined the light of exposure on him in the 1990's) but I believe there is a legitimate health issue at work here. 

Last year, at Carlisle, I rode around with Tom Marantz in his JPS-built 356 coupe all weekend and Tom related to me that half-way through his build, John had one or more serious heart attacks which laid him up for quite a spell.  That alone would be a major setback for a 1 or 2 person shop.  

As it turns out, Tom is a recently retired Cardiac Specialist who understood completely the extent of John's heart problems and gave him a lot of slack in completing the build (as well as coaching him through some of the rougher patches, I guess).  Coming back from something like that can be a long hard road, even for a person much younger than me or John - Hell, I've been stricken by illnesses less severe than a heart attack and sometimes it took me a long time to get back to a new "normal".  I honestly do not know what's going on out there, but I suspect that this time John saw it as time to begin to bow out and brought in someone to sell the business to while he stayed involved as a "consultant" or something.  Just guessing, but that's what I might do.

Anyway, the ultimate answer is to get someone over to the new place in San Marcos and get introduced to Patrick Crane and just chat about what's going on from his perspective, then swing it around to expectations of what's happening with any cars in queue, just to help reset expectations.  Lastly, I would invite Patrick to have a presence on here, not to beat him up, but to get him included in the conversations - much like as has happened with Greg Leach and Carey Hines and a few others.

Anybody want to volunteer to be a "Long Range Recon Guy"??

Gordon. Your rare reply (ha) is appreciated. Consider this.

I never mentioned but I had three surgeries last year during the time of my dealings with John. One for cardiovascular and most serious. Prior to going in, I asked John to see this through and take care of my wife even though we already knew the score. Thankfully John and I survived. So ? 

How much of this can be the cause of illnesses and not just a symptom?

I have always felt that if a man focusses on his work, things will take care of themselves. If that means e has to eat better, you do it cause the work demands it. If there is a demand for the service, his work will yield good results and he will be successful. If not, the business is not wanted enough and go try something else. Dodging preverbal bullets is not a profession although many spend most of their time and energy doing that instead of the real work.

Sorry, but my compassion is best spent trying to take care of my deserving wife and some of our retirement money. I am focused on my work at hand and will not be distracted.

Ndpendant posted:

I found this, maybe an alternative approach.  Forclose on his business if it exists.  Get the court order and perhaps open his eyes and wallet to get your deal resolved. Interesting tactic I have to admit.  Video included below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ctLEGrOmf4

This is done through the small claims process if you want to handle it yourself but the award limit is $10,000. Or it's done through the civil process. In small claims you sue the debtor in court and after you win the judgement against them you serve them the judgement and request payment. If they fail to pay you can seize a portion of their paycheck, if they are employed by someone, or you can, if after the debtor refuses to pay, go seize their assets to satisfy the debt. Not sure if it is the same process in the civil court system.

The problem however, may be because JPS has started under a new business name the old business may have filed bankruptcy and those assets may not be available anymore.

I'm not an attorney so do your own research.

I may be old school, but with regard to John Steel, regardless of health or other personal issues "A man is only as good as his word". PERIOD!

Kirk & Mary of Vintage Speedster BOTH went through MAJOR health issues requiring very invasive surgery and extended recovery. Kirk still managed to take care of business and customer service issues.

I'm just saying... 

I sure hope that @4Banger and @MaxMartens get this resolved and get the cars they paid for.

@Chris Kleber, KitMan Motors Hey Doc, appreciate your input. Here's wishing you continued success in your endeavors. 

Does Patrick Crane know about the SOC site?

michel posted:
Chris Kleber, KitMan Motors posted:

For those that are interested:     this is public information on website

I just checked the City of San Marcos, CA website  business license division

JPS Classics LLC is listed with  an ACTIVE business license in San Marcos

License BL18-029631  that was issued on 3/12/2018 for 1 year.

Owner is listed as Patrick Crane , Co owner is listed as John Steele

So if Patrick Crane is co-owner why doesn't he come on this forum and enlighten us?

BTW I live 18 minutes from their shop. Have not been there. just going by address posted here.

Then...

in 2004 I ran a Auto Shop program for At Risk Youth we bought 3 turn keys. 2 were delivered on time the 3rd was 6 weeks late even though the CEO s as t a week in a motel near Steels Facility. All 3 cars needed work to be made road safe. Over the years I endured insults from John regarding my speedster hobby. I was able to get him to ship missing parts to 3 different JPS customers because I wouldn't quit . His product did get better over recent years bur his business attitude remained poor at best. I hope I am wrong but I feel he has pulled a business  ploy.....Hope I  am wrong

You are likely correct yet hopefully some may have been prepared all along. Like poorly built businesses and cars, how good is a ploy? Some things are much bigger than they appear. Some things you just can't outrun or out maneuver. Some things are better handled now than later. Just sayin.

 

Sorry if someone's mentioned this, but Patrick Crane writes a blog on the JPS web site.

It's here.

While he hasn't put up many posts yet, the most recent was about two weeks ago, so there's some public evidence that he's at least drawing breath. The blog accepts public comments, so that's one place you could post something that he's likely to read.

Elsewhere on the site, they say new operations at the San Marcos location won't be starting until April.

I don't want to step into the whole John Steele thing a) because I have no history with him and b) because I think more than enough has already been said. And said.

But it looks like, going forward, any business with JPS will be handled by Crane, so maybe the best approach for anyone who's already ordered a car is to holster the shooting irons for now and try a calm, business-like approach with the new owner.

I was owed a substantial sum from another vendor and reimbursement dragged on for over a year, but, in the end, patience, perseverance, and some restraint on my part turned out to be the best course. I think torches and pitchforks work only in the movies.

 

 

 

Sacto Mitch posted:

 

Sorry if someone's mentioned this, but Patrick Crane writes a blog on the JPS web site.

It's here.

While he hasn't put up many posts yet, the most recent was about two weeks ago, so there's some public evidence that he's at least drawing breath. The blog accepts public comments, so that's one place you could post something that he's likely to read.

Elsewhere on the site, they say new operations at the San Marcos location won't be starting until April.

I don't want to step into the whole John Steele thing a) because I have no history with him and b) because I think more than enough has already been said. And said.

But it looks like, going forward, any business with JPS will be handled by Crane, so maybe the best approach for anyone who's already ordered a car is to holster the shooting irons for now and try a calm, business-like approach with the new owner.

I was owed a substantial sum from another vendor and reimbursement dragged on for over a year, but, in the end, patience, perseverance, and some restraint on my part turned out to be the best course. I think torches and pitchforks work only in the movies.

 

 

 

Wise words and will keep them in mind. I will remain cooperative and I am restrained and patient. At the same time, any responsible party needs to understand there are limits  and consequences they just may not have considered. As long as everyone understands that,  I was ready to end this 7 months ago or today.

 

WOLFGANG posted:

...Seems this forum would be where his current and future customers would come from?...

 Don't know anything about the guy or how much he knows about 'the community'. And not making excuses for him. If I were starting out as a new builder of these cars, I would certainly establish a presence here.

But, for anyone wondering how to contact him, that might be a place to start.

 

Ok, Troops.  Here is the daily Recon report on JPS  Dateline April 5, 2018  afternoon.

I stopped by the City of San Marcos business license division and verified the active license of JPS Classics LLC.  the address listed in the city records is in fact :

1825 Diamond St. Suite 103, San Marcos

I drove by the suite in a light industrial complex.  No signs on the doors, No suite numbers on the doors,  the larger suite next door is for rent.   JPS has the back suite that I estimate to be no larger than 2000 sq. ft.

I went to the leasing Agent's office and spoke to  Ken Dubs Sr. ( Dubs and Co. commercial Real Estate agents 1850 Diamond St #103, San MArcos (760)591-4100).

He said that Richard Crane was at the suite yesterday and he may have gone out for lunch. ( this was about 1:00PM) .  He said that he had Richard Crane's cell phone number and he could give him a call if I wanted.  Not wanting to "tip my hand", I told him that I wanted to show Richard something related to kit cars. I was just going to run a quick errand and then I would stop back by and see if I could catch him.  I then left the area and headed home.

My advice would be to contact Mr. Dubs and see if he would relay a message to Richard Crane and John Steele with the request that they contact you.  It never hurts to alert a landlord that there is "something not right" with a tenant and see if they can help you out.  Once you can establish contact with Crane/ Steele......... Take it from there.

Having personally gone a number of rounds with shady characters the likes of the former owners of Thunder Ranch, Carrera Coachwerks, ..........   I feel for you, 4 Banger........ it really sucks and I am constantly amazed at the under handed ways of some of these shysters. They think nothing of lying straight to your face ( since they have done that to everyone else for so long).    I am in deep with the $6 figures of "learning tuition" partly by my own fault and stubbornness not to cut my losses and run. But that is not me.  I have found some wonderfully talented and honest subcontractors that I use and am grateful for.   There are still some bad dogs out there.   Caveat Emptor  ( Buyer Beware)

Persevere,

Dr. Chris

Today at 2;30 pm I went to the JPS building in San Marcos. The building was shut tight. I peeked through the smoked office front glass and saw a desk with a phone some papers and a big can of Bondo on it, I looked through the next window which showed a small room like a waiting room with a coffee table some chairs and some books on table which had some pics of early 356 Porsches on them. I could see through the office part of it and through a partially open door looking into the shop area a huge JPS Motorsport shield sign mounted on wall. I went around to their outside storage area which was locked and there was just an old Mercedes . I will try to upload pics I took but they will just confirm what I saw as far as the exterior. it looks like the first attempt of a move to me on this end. Sorry I couldn't report a better situation. I'm a general contractor in this area and do work on Commercial buildings near by. I will swing by as I can and report any new action. 

Good recon gentlemen. Now we need to recon at the old address. Cleared out, locked up?

There was a lot of product at the old location. Not things that could be hidden away easily. A lot of tubs and pans and cars. Its a gated industrial neighborhood in which the gates are open for other businesses. Easy to drive through (in a semi rough business district).

New management should come through and speak up with intentions.

I will be in socal in about a week to pursue my options. I will not burn bridges with anybody. If that happens, others will do it on their own.

 

My guess is that ears & eyes are in the room to spectate the scuttlebutt.

My wife and I are amazed !!!! Thank you just doesn't cut it.

I immediately became a supporting member of this forum. I am now an official tub-head (without a tub or money...ha).

I am preparing two solutions for Mr. Crane and Mr. Steele. I can not urge them enough to consider them seriously. Stay tuned. Oh...and glad to be associated with people like you.

MaxMartens posted:

Sacto, that JPS blog only accepts fb logged in replies unfortunately.

FB unfortunately does not guarantee that your comment will be seen by anyone but YOU.   The other party can block you, remove your comment and there is no DISLIKE button.  

I am not on FB for that reason... Ebay at least allows you to make a true comment and then gives the seller the chance to explain or fix it... 

4Banger, you should have been around when Carrera Coachworks (see Dr. Chris reference) was around and taking advantage. That too was a full court press by the guys on this site. Point is, this is a small hobby and shysters get weeded out pretty quickly. 

One of our strengths is that we try and take care of each other and those who come with questions, issues or suspicions. 

The challenge is not to draw conclusions without the facts. Most of the time we get to the truth.

I hope this gets worked out to your satisfaction and that the new active management at JPS squares away the company.

I also hope that John Steele regains his health.

4Banger posted:

Wise words and will keep them in mind. I will remain cooperative and I am restrained and patient. At the same time, any responsible party needs to understand there are limits  and consequences they just may not have considered. As long as everyone understands that,  I was ready to end this 7 months ago or today.

It looks like you had not ordered anything on 7/9/1712:59 PM.

https://www.speedsterowners.co...7#563276256719572807

4Banger, did you change your mind before ordering?

4Banger, do you have a name?

What was your signed contract expected, delivery date?

Just wondering, what the timeline really is/was.

As an effort to settle my business matter with JPS, John Steele, Patrick Crane, etc, and to show my good intentions I have some ideas to present here. This new co-owner is interested in establishing a clean slate and offering a quality service to his future clients. What better way to do this than to show real integrity and commitment at this time?  I think this is an excellent opportunity for him. Here are my options.

1.Just refund the remainder of our payments by EOD Monday, 04/09/18. You can get the details but it is a little less than $21k right now. Boom...done. Business off to a good start and everyone can at least recommend you for your integrity. Much better advertising than some old pics of JPS builds at the old address from years ago.

2.You say you have 4 cars ready for the customer to choose an engine and start their summer fun. I want to start having summer fun. Give me one. We can work out the small details like which color, what wheels, non-salvage title, legit engine, etc.. Nothing elaborate... just standard service issue things I promise. And I'll come over there with $10k and verify it is what we agreed and drive away into all that summer fun.

How about it? The ball is in your court JPS Motorsports, JPS Classics, P. Crane,  J. Steele,  or whoever has the keys.

Roy Simpson, FF Plastic Porsche posted:
4Banger posted:

Wise words and will keep them in mind. I will remain cooperative and I am restrained and patient. At the same time, any responsible party needs to understand there are limits  and consequences they just may not have considered. As long as everyone understands that,  I was ready to end this 7 months ago or today.

It looks like you had not ordered anything on 7/9/1712:59 PM.

https://www.speedsterowners.co...7#563276256719572807

4Banger, did you change your mind before ordering?

4Banger, do you have a name?

What was your signed contract expected, delivery date?

Just wondering, what the timeline really is/was.

Contract dated April, 2017. Contract due date given to us no later than 1st week September, 2017 for a completed car, registered and delivered to our door. We questioned this fully at the beginning and were assured there was no prob. We allowed extra time past due date due to nature of project. Finally requested refund and set deadline for EOY 2017. I question why the scrutiny? That post you cite doesn't say I hadn't ordered anything. In fact it shows I already knew there were problems...that is why I said "I think I ordered..." And yes, I actually have two names. One at the start and one at the end. Ha.

MaxMartens posted:

JPS FB shows activity 4-1 & yesterday claiming attendance at La Jolla Concourse. Somebody attend!

And yes any of those available cars should be ours, NOT to new clients.

I will keep my positivity and look to see progress on the JPS business front.

$70.00 per ticket. WE are going to Good Guys in Del Mar instead. 

 

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