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February 19, 2007

Let 100 Leos Bloom

Drink_water Beautiful Vintage stoves restored by Stevan Thomas Radakovich. (Update: See the many comments below)

Also, Meneghini antique refrigerator. (From Neatorama)

28,000 potted, blooming flowers

Mens et Manus (MIT logo) in origami, by Brian Chan

Some Hungarian home decorator

Pink Not Dead! Project

Making a little box out of a Post-It Note

Egg Bird Houses by J. Schatz

Yahoo's The Pianist

Movisi modular sofa

Seen everywhere: Folding Chair (YouTubesky). Update: Chishen Chiu's website

Petronas 2007 Chinese New Year Greetings

/// Reddit it /// Add it to your del.icio.us /// A Huge Depository of Unusual Design Concepts Here

February 19, 2007 in Home Decor | Permalink

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Comments

Here's a post from Garden Web on Stevan Thomas.
Sat, Mar 17, 07 at 11:24
A previous poster mentioned Stevan Thomas. BEWARE of Stevan Thomas and 'Vintage Stoves by Stevan Thomas'. He has the slickest website on the internet and apparently does nice work -- but he is a swindler. Took my deposit $$$ and never delivered on the product (never had any intention of delivering). I have a lawsuit against him to recover the $$$ - and found out that he has at least two other lawsuits against him currently, plus at least one consumer fraud complaint against him in Kansas (he was formerly in California... wonder what actions were taken against him there??). Find another restoration company that is honest -- there are several. Also, check out 'The Old Appliance Club' at www.antiquestoves.com/toac/index.htm They've been very helpful to me. Have fun!

Posted by: Ron Elliott at Apr 3, 2007 4:16:18 PM

Well, I have to say that the post (it wasn't made by me, I just posted it here) was not correct. Today Stevan delivered a beautiful, black O'Keefe and Merritt Aristocrat stove to my house. He did an excellent job on the stove, he was out of contact for a bit and I saw the post above and panicked. But alls well that ends well and I think Stevan is trustworthy. I'd buy a stove from him again.
Ron Elliott

Posted by: Ron Elliott at Apr 12, 2007 4:32:12 PM

It looks like I too have been swindled by Mr. Stevan Thomas. He has had the full payment for a stove restoration of mine. It is months overdue, and when I call him, he make up lies and tells me what I want to hear, then never delivers. He has on numerous occasions: told me the stove had shipped, told me he would actually ship it the next day, told me that he would get back to me with tracking information, put me on hold and never picked up again, told me "Michelle" (whoever that is) had the shipping information and would call me with it in 5 minutes....the list goes on and on. I called the BBB in Kansas and they have 15 complaints againt him in the last three years. He's been dropped from the Hutchinson KS Chamber of Commerce, etc. He screens his calls and doesn't answer. My lawsuit will be recorded soon. So, beware of Stevan Thomas

Posted by: Mark D at May 12, 2007 2:28:42 PM

I'm afraid I've got to update my post. Stevan delivered the stove, personally on April 11th. The remodel of the house was not done when he delivered the stove, I actually don't physically live in the house yet. When he delivered it, it was very hectic but right away I noticed some dents (like a car door "ding") in the front panels of the stove. I asked him about it and he said that the metal behind the porcelain caused small dents when the porcelain's temp was raised to 1200 degrees to bake it on. I carefully covered the stove with a cushioned tarp, went on vacation, came home 10 days later and started taking a close look at the stove. What I saw was pretty appalling. Not only was the front and side covered with "dings" (and not from metal behind the porcelain) but the porcelain itself looked awful. Pitted, rough finished, bumps where they shouldn't be, etc. On closer inspection, all the chrome was pitted, the interior finish of the ovens had rust on them, the bottom of the stoves were warped and to top it off, there were no air-flaps to regulate the mixture of propane and air. Just left off. This was not what I expected. There's more. Pictures are worth a thousand words and I plan on making a website to post my pictures and let other people speak about their experiences. The following is from a repairman who did a small report on what I have. "To briefly describe this restoration, all the processes and necessary
steps are not even close to satisfactory condition. I would go far as to
say that not only was the craftsmanship 'shoddy', but that every major
rebuild process is despicable (no quality restorer should have ever
considered using the parts that were used), and that it must have been put
together by an extreme amateur restorer at best. The chrome is terribly pitted and not platted properly, in fact, these parts shouldn't have even been considered for use before platting. The porcelain is the worst I have
seen and rippled and rough in many areas. The worst part of all, is that
all the body panels are dented and warped inside and out. The interior
pieces are rusty and warped (which tells me he didn't tear down and rebuild the frame and components).The Grillevator has rust inside on the
springs as the springs are old. The Air-Shutters are
missing. All the interior speckled pieces are warped and not salvageable
because they are warped beyond repair (the metal is old and worn out). All
the interior speckled pieces (if they were not warped) should have been
reporcelained and are rusty also with many carbon burns areas. The whole stove is absolutely terribly restored with no concern for
quality. Most all the pieces that make it up
are not salvageable."

You're nuts if you're thinking of buying a stove from him.

Posted by: Ron Elliott at Jun 5, 2007 4:56:11 PM

Thanks for the informative review. We too were hoping to buy a period style stove for our kitchen. There seems to be a fair number of people selling them on the web. We found out that the first thing to do is to check out the Better Business Bureau rating on the companies. That said volumes vs a sales pitch or a slick site. http://www.bbb.org/ That is the link. Under Check it Out - hit business and you can see the plus and minus information. In the end, we purchased our stove from the classifieds at www.antiquestoves.com and got everything else we needed through the Old Appliance Club. We saved 80% over buying one finished and it wasn't all that hard to do either and makes for a great family memory. We love it!

Posted by: Dean Hevell at Jun 14, 2007 10:28:32 AM

Mark D-This is an update to my previous post:

We did finally receive our
stove but only after much perstiance. We had to call him from different
phones because he screens his calls. Through my posting on the Grow a
Brain" site we were able to find the name of a personal friend of Stevan's
who contacted him on our behalf (and he did not respond to her either.)
When I convinced him that I was serious about the lawsuit he did respond.
Finally, I was able to pin him down on a delivery date and get a shipping
conformation number. I must have called him 20 times from a half dozen
different phone numbers before we got some action.
>
> Here are a few things we do know that Stevan did that were deceitful:
> 1. He sent us a picture of "our stove" that he said was done several
months into the process. He said that the only reason we didn't have it yet
was that he just hadn't had time to ship it. When we did receive the stove,
we compared the picture he sent to the actual stove and it is clear that
while it was a similar stove, the stove in the picture is NOT our stove!
> 2. While the stove looked cosmetically very good, we had heard that we
should have it checked out to see if it was working properly. We contacted
a reputable local stove guy and he took it to his shop to test it out. He
found that the inner workings had not been cleaned properly, that the pilot
lights were not adjusted and were burning far too hot, and we've just found
out that the "new" oven temperature control valve works IN REVERSE! So
hotter is cooler and vice/versa. The re-chroming of the drip pans was done
porely with minimal prep. and are pitted and "bumpy."
> 3. The clock and timer do not work at all.
> All in all, we may end up with another $500 or more into this stove just
getting it safe and reliable to use. We've heard that the reason he only takes cash or checks is because he has
lost some disputes with Visa and has had to pay some pretty hefty refunds.
Taking checks lets him keep the money without any customer recourse.
Good luck to those who have already sent deposit money.
Mark D.

Posted by: Mark D at Jul 8, 2007 6:55:03 PM

Some new information has come to light after I posted yesterday:

Stevan Thomas' real name is Stevan Thomas RADAKOVICH. I don't know why he doesn't use his real name. Also, here is an interesting link to the Kansas Secretary of State: http://www.accesskansas.org/srv-corporations/getRecord.do?number=3756855
His corporation is delinquent.
Mark D.

Posted by: Mark D at Jul 9, 2007 11:27:42 AM

I have been directly involved with the porcelain industry for 15 plus years and have personal knowledge of Stevan Thomas RADAKOVICH and yes he also left us holding the bag with quite alot of money owing. If you are looking for a quality product and customer service you can trust, contact Antique Gas Stoves. You can e-mail them at cookin@antiquegasstoves.com or check out the web site at antiquegasstoves.com. I have people contact me on a weekly basis for us to "re-do" their stoves. We are not in that particular area of the porcelain business, but do refer them on to Antique Gas Stoves. We have a great business relationship with Antique Gas Stoves, they have done a couple of stoves for myself and several for other employees. They are truly the best out there, taking pride in their work and craftmenship. Don't take my word for it nor would I ask you to take them at face value. Check out the Better Business Bureau or any of the several customer references that they have. This is most definately an up front, nothing to hide company that you can approch with confidance.

Posted by: Karen W at Jul 10, 2007 2:11:51 PM

Well, my husband and I feel quite "taken" after receiving our restored vintage stove by Stevan Thomas. Our stove arrived four months late (after I made quite a few calls, sent emails and even a demand letter to Mr. Thomas, which he claimed he never received).

I wish I could say that it was worth the wait, but there are some problems:

(1) the inside of our stove is rusty;
(2) the second oven doesn't work;
(3) the oven that does work bakes very poorly and unevenly;
(4) one oven door doesn't close properly;
(5) the pilot keeps going out on the cooktop;
(6) the chrome top is pitted and yellowed.

Certainly not what I expected for my $9,000.

Of course, Mr. Thomas has not returned any of my emails, nor do I expect he will answer my telephone calls. Perhaps he will respond to my lawyer?

DO NOT BUY ANYTHING FROM STEVAN THOMAS AT VINTAGESTOVES.COM! We are now replacing Mr. Thomas's "restoration" with a Bluestar.

Posted by: Sherry at Jul 12, 2007 1:31:11 PM

Stevan Thomas has cheated us out of our stove and a substantial amount of money. At this point, he refuses to communicate with us in any way.
Mr. Thomas contracted to completely restore our 1953 O'Keefe & Merritt Model 905 stove, which we have owned for thirty years.He delivered the stove in three times the agreed upon time in an unacceptable condition. The defects were many and varied.
Mr. Thomas agreed to take the stove back and correct the defects. He has now held our stove captive for three months after estimating a two week turn around.
We have filed a complaint with the State of Kansas Attorney General's Office and are contemplating other legal action.
Mr. Thomas has lied to us over and over again. He cannot be trusted!!

Posted by: Susan H at Jul 29, 2007 8:18:36 PM

We had an experience pretty similar to everyone else who has posted. Our variation was "money sent, no stove ever delivered." We finally got our money back by filing a detailed fraud complaint with the Kansas Attorney General's office. The legal advice I received was to go this route, rather than to file a personal lawsuit. I thought the KSAG's office was great - very responsive! The lesson I learned was to NEVER deal with anyone who will not take a credit card. Also, there are now multitudes of BBB complaints tied to the business; that was not the case when my saga started, however. Good luck.

Posted by: P.J. at Aug 17, 2007 2:14:59 PM

I have received several complaints about Stevan Thomas. I contacted him more than once on behalf of a woman who had him restore a CHAMBERS range, to no avail. He now doesn't answer my calls, either.

After reading this, contacted him about what's going on.

No reply.

I have removed him from my list of recommended Parts & Service companies on my website.

Todd W. White, Owner & Webmaster
Chambers Stove Lovers Website
http://www.chamberstoves.net/

Posted by: Todd W. White at Aug 31, 2007 7:47:13 AM

Update:

Finally got a reply from him:

"Who the (expletive deleted) do you think you are, you self-righteous (expletive deleted)? You send me this email and ten minutes late post your self-promoting (expletive deleted)?

No reply within the 10 minutes it took you to post? Are you out of your (expletive deleted) mind?

My customers may have legitimate complaints, but you have no
contractual/personal/business relationship with me, whatsoever. Making it your business to (expletive deleted) with me and my business may prove to be bad for your health..."

Oh well...

Posted by: Todd W. White at Aug 31, 2007 9:00:39 AM

We bid on several antique stoves on ebay and eventually won what we thought was a perfect old Wedgewood stove. We wanted it to compliment a complete kitchen remodeling.

What we did not know about old stoves hurt us. When it was delivered we learned by our gas company serviceman that it could not be used because the oven had to be ignited with a match.

At that time we had almost $1,200.00 invested for the stove and the shipping. We were so heartsick we didn't know what to do.
Our service man must have felt sorry for us and went out of his way to assist. We didn't know what to do, but the story does have a good ending.

The gas company gave us the name of JES Enterprises in California at this web site - www.antiquestoves.com. They had previously ordered parts and rebuilding services for other customers and had an excellent rating.
JES knew the stove and within one week made an easy to install system for our stove so it could pass our city code. (They had a bunch of other parts that we didn't even realize were missing.)

Now the stove is operating better than a brand new range and it looks just sensational in our new kitchen.

If there is a moral to the story we would have to say this. If you don't know what you are buying from an auction, antique store or an individual - EDUCATE yourself first. Ask questions. People usually are honest and will help you. Just doing that much will save you much expense and heartache.

A call to your city will help in finding out if there are any problems with using an older stove, building codes, etc.
Good servicemen may be hard to find to work on old stoves, but they are out there and they have tips that can help. Good luck! Luke and Anna

Posted by: Luke and Anna at Sep 20, 2007 9:05:55 AM

Steven Thomas Radakoviche. Where are you? My staggered burner Roeper Is still on your web site. --Sold To Hillsborough. Can I have my $4800.00 Back. I called the local detective and he said the store was boarded up and Stevie flew the coop. I have filed a complaint with the attorney general Probabaly will not be a help. Beware of Mr. radakoviche. I hope het gets whats coming to him.

Posted by: Roger Emerick at Sep 28, 2007 1:06:04 PM

Check out Vintage Stoves Inc. website. Mr. Radakoviche has posted a notice that he is not taking new orders so he can fulfill his current obligations. Looks like he may be trying to keep ahead of the State Attorney General.

Posted by: Ann Rushing at Oct 2, 2007 10:03:29 PM

On July 1, 2007, we sent a deposit of $12,500 for an O'Keefe and Merritt 1952 Aristocrat stove. Top of the line the priciest stove on the website. The trouble actually started within a few days when the pictures of the back of the stove and gas/wiring specs were never sent. At first, I didn't think much about it. After numerous calls and emails from my kitchen designer and and myself went unanswered I started questioning the ethics of this company/man. If I would be able to get him to answer a call, he would act like "someone" was supposed to send the info and he acted surprised that they hadn't. He assurred me that he would take care of it. Well, he didn't. He would have an excuse and promise to get back with us. He didn't......not until after my husband called and left a "not so pleasant" message. The following day, we got a picture of the back of a black unfinished stove. There were all of maybe 8 words about the spec requirements. All of a sudden, after months of no replies to emails or answered phone calls, today I get an invoice for the balance of a "white" 1952 Aristocrat stove from Stevan Thomas Radakovich. Pretty strange that I had asked him about colors as early as Feb. and he told me he could make it any color. Of course, custom colors would be an extra charge.....but he told me I had plenty of time to decide. For some reason, he seems to have taken it upon himself to paint the stove white! Lots of concerns on our part after speaking with people in the town he "operates" from, previous and current customers, the KS attorney general's office, local chamber of commerce in Hutchinson,KS, law enforcement, better business bureau and on and on and on. Has anyone else received any like correspondence that their projects are completed, will be gas tested "today" and crated Friday? He wants final payment. Mysteriously, there is no mention of the ship date. Upon the advice of our attorneys(in WV and KS) Mr. Radakovich's work will be fully inspected and tested before we proceed.......

Posted by: Vickie Falbo at Oct 9, 2007 5:10:11 PM

If you take a look at the Vintage Stoves Web site, he has changed the name of the company to Vintage Stove Works - a wholly owned subsidiary of Vintage Stoves. Very interesting.

Posted by: Lucy at Oct 13, 2007 2:18:04 PM

Yeah, same stoves, same address, same URL. Big deal. Get a life.

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Oct 13, 2007 4:02:10 PM

Same Stevan Thomas,too. Respectfully, Lucy

Posted by: Lucy at Oct 13, 2007 9:58:04 PM

wow... must make you all feel good to keep kicking a guy when he is down! wwjd?
topcrop

Posted by: nickerson at Oct 15, 2007 4:31:38 PM

You asked What Would Jesus Do? Don't you think you should ask that question to Mr. Radakovich? Not to his victims. Because Jesus would not have treated these people the way Steven Thomas has. All of these people have been taken to the cleaners by Mr. Steven Thomas. They have all been given the run around. They all have been victims of him and his dirty business tactics. You said they are kicking the guy when he is down. He put himself there... Not his victims! And he writes to the people he has screwed over GET A LIFE! What a jerk!

Posted by: Susan H at Oct 15, 2007 5:15:11 PM

sorry to upset the applecart i was just passing through when i stumbled upon this web site.
I feel bad for everyone involved...i'm sure that everyone has a story and it seems not always a happy one. I will just add everyone to our prayer chain including MR. Thomas and Copmany..I'm sure everyone pays all thier taxes to the state and federal goverments, they never stiff a hard working waitperson on the tip and they never tried to talk their way out of a speeding ticket, they have never squabbled over the "Will" of a loved one for a bigger piece of the pie, they have never did a deal in the back room of the office...WOW..
I'm glad i am not perfect and never make a mistake or wrong turn at the fork in the road.
as perfect as you all are how do you sleep??

Posted by: nickerson at Oct 15, 2007 7:24:46 PM

Yeah, thanks for letting everyone know you got you're stove, Susan. Just let your post hang out there and never let anyone know that you have been made whole. God knows if it were not perfect you would have said so by now... obviously you got what you paid for but choose not to say it...

And Lucy? Screwed over? Wanna see the stove she got screwed into: http://www.vintagestoves.com/stove/31gafferssattlernov05/ She has had it for going on two years now but could not resist the smell of blood.

It's only too bad you didn't get to cast the first stone, Susan.

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Oct 15, 2007 8:01:56 PM

More "victim" stoves:

Ron Elliott - http://www.vintagestoves.com/stove/black5850L/
Oh, hey Ron... remember sending me this email on 5.23.2007 - a month and an half AFTER you got your stove (not ten days later like you stated above), that you helped me install?
"P.S. If the poor business decisions have left you a little cash-starved, we can talk." What was that? The Attorney General asked me to forward the entire email to him...

Sherri Millis - http://www.vintagestoves.com/stove/blackwedge6double/

Damn ugly stoves, hugh?

Some of you have legit complaints and I am working to resolve them. Ann, you are still at the top of the list and I await the email from the A.G.

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Oct 15, 2007 8:21:13 PM

"All of these people have been taken to the cleaners by Mr. Steven Thomas. They have all been given the run around. They all have been victims of him and his dirty business tactics."

That so? let's see about that:

Karen W. - Posted Jul 10, 2007
Actually works for West Coast Porcelain in Corona, CA. Is a mere secretary for the owner, Dean Reed. According to Dean, when we picked up the last of the fucked-up porcelain they did for us, we owed them no money. They are lucky we didn't sue them after they knowingly changed the formula for the Buttercup Yellow porcelain they did for us and tried to play dumb about it... fortunately for us, a former employee (was out on disability at the time) got the call from Dean wanting to know the actual formula and decided to make a change because "it would be cheaper". No wonder none of the panels matched, eh Dean? Karen is also personal friends with Terri and Dave over at Antique Gas Stoves. Her posting was not only a lie that will find West Coast Porcelain defending a slander/liable suite before the year is out, it was a pathetic attempt to promote the business interests of her close and personal friends at our expense. Dean can't claim ignorance because he was advised of this posting when he was confronted about an alleged debt owed to his company by us. Good luck Dean.

Todd White - Posted Aug. 31, 2007
My unedited email to him tells the whole story:

"Who the fuck do you think you are, you self-righteous asshole? You send me this email and ten minutes late (sic) post your self-promoting bullshit?

"After reading this, contacted him about what's going on. No reply."

No reply within the 10 minutes it took you to post? Are you out of your fuckin' mind?

My customers may have legitimate complaints, but you have no contractual/personal/business relationship with me, whatsoever. Making it your business to fuck with me and my business may prove to be bad for your health..."

More to follow...

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Oct 15, 2007 8:39:24 PM

Just Remember Folks...... Where there is billowing smoke you will find fire, and where you find fire you will get burnt!!!

The Attorey General is not having to act as a go between for Antique Gas Stoves. Why....becasue they are HONEST

By the way, I never claimed not to be friends with them. Yes they are close personal friends, why???? Well maybe becasue they don't screw people over and there business practices are legit.

And for those of you who don't know Steve personally.....I would be willing to bet that "nickerson" is an alias.

And Steve....wwjd???? Probably get to work and make everything you screwed up right. - Maybe you should take the hint......

And if you use just a little more profanity they just might remove this blog and your little problem would dissapear..... you know all about that don't you.

Posted by: Karen at Oct 16, 2007 10:28:44 AM

Nothing to say about your lie, Karen? Just gonna pretend THAT didn't happen?

Wasn't gonna throw rocks at AGS but... "an up front company"? Why do they hide behind a P.O. Box then? We don't. Physical address is right on the website. I defy anybody to call them and see if they will give you their physical address (951.445.0300) And as for their BBB record, perhaps if they asked about AGS under their former name: A & B Restorations, more would be revealed.

Boy, I'll bet Terri and Dave are just SO HAPPY you keep sticking your nose where it doesn't belong. I know I am... (wink-wink, Dean! It's commin'!) With friends like you, who needs enemies? You're like the proverbial monkey that said to the fish, "Oh, you'll drown! Here, let me help you up into this tree!"

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Oct 16, 2007 1:51:05 PM

nickerson= nixson@ cotipxi, colo

Posted by: nickerson at Oct 16, 2007 2:38:15 PM

In case there is any confusion, the Susan H. who posted on July 29th is not the same Susan H. who posted on October 15th. I will be happy to update my posting as soon as all of my issues have been resolved.

Posted by: Susan H. at Oct 16, 2007 9:05:11 PM

Hi Stevan. The 1951 Wedgewood I bought from you 1-2 years ago looks great and is working well. But I'm still waiting for the kickplate? Can you please send one to me? Thank you.

Posted by: brooke schooley at Nov 9, 2007 11:32:58 AM

Brooke: kickplate will go out 11/13 - after the holiday. I'll email the tracking info to you rather than posting it here.

Posted by: Stevan Thomas at Nov 12, 2007 8:56:54 AM

I'm the next person on the list of people who have endless problems with Stevan Thomas. I would advise no one to get mixed up with this guy under any circumstances. I sent him my 1948 O'Keefe&Merritt stove which I have had for 25 years to be restored. It went out to him the first of July with a contract stating it would be returned by September 15. My first hint that there was a problem was when I called around the first of September to find out if it was close to ready. He said it would not be ready then but that it would be ready by September 27 at which point he would be driving through Albuquerque and he could drop the stove off and install it on his way to California. He says he has "vendors" there--there is actually much more to the story than that as I've found out. I asked him if he needed directions to my house; he said no, but to please have my contractor call him so that he could make certain that the stove could be moved in without any problems. My contractor called; he never returned the call. September 27th came and went with neither hide nor hair of Stevan Thomas; I called him probably 50 times and he never answered his phone. In the meantime, I called the BBB; they had 20 complaints pending. I called the Hutchinson PD; they knew immediately who I was talking about; I called the state Attorney General; they have 3 (mine now makes 4) complaints against him. After about 10 days, he finally answered his phone and went on to tell me this and that about why he hadn't bothered to return phone calls. At that point, the detective at the PD went to his store and saw the stove and said it looked complete. My accountant acted as an intermediary and Stevan Thomas pledged to send the stove so I bank-wired the balance. The stove arrived about a week later; I travel out of the country for my work a lot so the contractor received the stove; unpacked it and found that it was missing the kickplate (seems like that is a prevailing theme) and the cooktop. My contractor called the accountant--this was mid-October--who then called Stevan who said he would send out the missing parts immediately. I called repeatedly when I returned from out of the country--no answer. He finally called with a tracking number and lo and behold, the kickplate arrived. But no cooktop--and in the interim, I had the contractor hook up the stove to discover that neither the oven nor broiler works. Again, I've called him repeatedly with no answer. So now my case is with the State AG. He has something called an ABC lodged against him and he has been deposed by the state AG several times. Apparently, an ABC means he must satisfy the complaints against him or face charges. I am now out $7,000 with no functional stove. There is something seriously wrong with this guy--DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH HIM. The investigator that I spoke with at the Kansas state Attorney General's office said they have discovered that there is a long standing history of Steven Thomas running afoul of the law, not just in this business but in many other ways. I learned a hard lesson--never do business with an individual over the internet without checking the BBB. He's a scam artist who's been at it for a long time.

Posted by: Suzanne Stalls at Nov 25, 2007 9:15:32 PM

Add my wife and I to the list of unsatisfied customers for Stevan Thomas Vintage Stoves.

Stevan has had our 1934 Estate "Fresh Air" stove for approaching 18 months(contract signed 6/13/2006), with no sign of completion after numerous phone calls, emails, and calls from our attorney(it was our attorney's call that apparently prompted the brief website change/disclaimer in October). The stove was to have been completed by October 15th of 2006 according to the contract.

He has not answered nor returned our calls or emails for months at a time, and based on an experiment using another phone with a California area code earlier in the year, we are convinced he was screening his calls.

When we have managed to get through(mostly back in 2006 and early 2007), we have had numerous promises of delivery, photos, and completion over the last year... all passing without an update, and utter silence.

The last information we received was via our attorney in October(or perhaps late September, I forget)where Mr. Thomas assured her that our stove would be complete by the end of October, 2007. He still won't answer or return our calls or email though. But it's interesting that she was able to get right through, when we are consistently unable to reach him, even after leaving voice mails. But the "end of October" came and went, and after a follow up email and voice-mail to him in early November, we still have not heard anything.

We currently have about $3200 in prepaid stove restoration costs, $1800 in the stove itself, probably around $1000 in shipping, and another hundred or two in another donor Estate Stove we bought for Mr.Thomas to use to complete ours. So that's about $6000 that is tied up in our stove sitting somewhere in Kansas.

What is odd, and perhaps most upsetting, is that Mr. Thomas seemed very genuine and customer focused during our numerous conversations early in the process. And to his credit, in the Spring of this year(I'd have to check which month) after many many calls and begging for him to complete our stove, he did send us a "loaner" Okeefe and Merit stove that he had cobbled together from spare parts, which we really appreciated and are still using(although the oven has problems).

Since that time, Mr. Thomas has been unreachable, and we can receive no update on our stove, which ultimately is all we want.

At this point we have done all we can, called, emailed, and even had our attorney attempt to reach a resolution. We have not threatened Mr. Thomas with legal action, and have merely asked to fulfill the contract. But we are left with no alternative now, and we too are filing with the Wichita Better Business Bureau and Kansas Attorney General.

I have called both organizations already and spoke with them, and as mentioned in the posts above, it is distressing to find that there are already numerous(20+) complaints with the BBB, and "several"(The AG wouldn't tell me yet how many) cases pending with the Kansas Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division.

I have also called the Hutchinson Chamber of Commerce, where Vintage Stoves is no longer a member(to be fair, Stevan Thomas simply declined to renew membership), but the folks there have not seen Mr. Thomas for "2 or 3 months" and the "shop looks closed".

I will be calling the Hutchinson PD next.

In closing, I personally hate to have to resort to taking these final steps, as we really only want to resolve and receive the service we have contracted. But Mr. Thomas has left us with no choice.

We also hesitated to escalate this with the State of Kansas AG, etc.. until we saw via this forum and other information such as the Wichita BBB that others had been similarly treated. With that in mind, we felt it was our civic duty to step forward as well to help others in this predicament.

But based on our current experience, we too cannot in good faith recommend anyone contract stove restoration services with Stevan Thomas Vintage Stoves. Perhaps this situation may improve over time, and I honestly hope it does, but the current situation is unacceptable.

By the way, one other avenue we may suggest exploring is contacting The Rachael Ray Show production. Stevan Thomas provided a stove for her set, and Vintage Stoves is listed as a sponsor, or was listed the last time I saw the show some months ago. I suspect that their production company, if not Ms. Ray herself, would not like to be promoting her viewers use a service with this much trouble. We will be contacting them, and perhaps all of you that have outstanding issues may want to do the same. The Rahael Ray Show can then choose to use that information as they see fit, verify it, etc...

Best of luck to everyone, and I hope that if something has happened in Mr. Thomas' life to precipitate this problem, that it improves and he can focus again on delivering our stoves.

In the end, that's all we want, our stove, restored and operating correctly and safely.

Al


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Nov 27, 2007 3:08:33 PM


Update:

I spoke with Detective Harcrow at the Hutchinson PD(620-694-2828) today, and said that he has seen Mr Thomas around town in the last few weeks, so he believes Mr. Thomas should still "be around" and hasn't disappeared.

Based on our conversation, Detective Harcrow appears to be the detective that assisted Ms. Stalls in the post above, but he stressed to me that since this is a civil matter there is little he can currently do. Although he intervened in Ms. Stalls' case, it appeared he has since clarified with his legal counsel that what he can do is limited until engaged via an actual criminal investigation.

That being said, he expressed that he was quite distressed about this situation after having spoken to other dissatisfied customers. And when cases are filed with the Kansas Attorney General, he encouraged that his name and contact information be given to the AG as a local resource to employ as needed. So be sure to provide his contact information in any filing with the BBB and Kansas AG.

Also so the local PD is aware, for those filing with the BBB and Kansas AG, I would recommend at least giving the detective a call and letting him know about your case and situation. That way they have proactive visibility at the local level in case the AG or BBB contacts them.

I am filing our complaint with the Wichita BBB today, and will post any information or feedback received from that process.

Let's continue to use this forum as a centralized community exchange of information to keep everyone aware of status, and hopefully progress.

United as a consumer group, we can perhaps encourage Mr. Thomas to get back on track, deliver our stoves restored and in good working order, and hopefully for his business, restore his good name.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Nov 28, 2007 7:34:17 AM


Wichita BBB case filed today, November 28th, 2007. Case#: 7462


I also spoke with a business associate of Mr. Thomas today who has done much of the quality porcelain work for Vintage Stoves in the past, including the porcelain work for our stove which was completed over 8 months ago according to his recollection.

In respecting his privacy and his reticence to be put in the middle of this dispute, I will not provide his name or business contact. But this contact did call Mr. Thomas on our behalf and Mr. Thomas took his call.

By way of this contact, Mr. Thomas indicated that he is actively working on our stove, that it is "3/4 complete", but that being a 1930s era stove it has been giving him some difficulties beyond the stoves he normally works on. With that in mind, Mr. Thomas commented that he sometimes runs into challenges with our stove that frustrate him, and then he has to "walk away" for a while, hence the ongoing delay.

While understandable to some degree, my thoughts are that this never the less does not justify a year's delay in delivery, and complete lack of communication on Mr. Thomas' part.

However, Mr. Thomas relayed through this contact that he hopes to have our stove completed in "2 to 3 weeks", which given the coming holidays I have to assume at best would indicate an early 2008 delivery. As a point of reference, keep in mind our contracted delivery date was October 15th, 2006. So I believe we have been more than patient.

Although the contact did not want to place himself in the middle of this situation, we very much appreciate his effort to contact Mr. Thomas on our behalf. This is an example of excellent customer service, even when we were an indirect consumer of his services. So again, many thanks to this this contact.

This contact also indicated that Mr. Thomas has been a good customer and business partner in the past, and has also in the past been a good supplier of quality stove restoration services from what he can tell. So it is very distressing to hear that the current situation has developed.

We are pleased to hear this feedback via this contact, and do honestly hope that Mr. Thomas will deliver on this latest commitment.

However, I also respectfully let the business contact know that we have received these "2 to 3 week" type of assurances before over the last year with no results. So at this time we will still be filing our grievance with the Wichita BBB and Kansas Attorney General's office.

Hopefully the situation can be resolved before these processes reach their ultimate conclusion, but in light of past missed deadlines and utter lack of communication, we feel we have no choice but to pursue these courses in parallel.

We will be mailing in our paperwork to the Kansas AG this week.

I will update this thread if there is any news or meaningful developments in our case.

Please feel free to contact me directly at al_roethlisberger@yahoo.com if you have any comments, suggestions, or feedback. We would especially like to hear from other customers of Stevan Thomas Vintage Stoves that are having difficulties, and see how we can pool our resources to resolve these outstanding issues.


I also want to clarify and publicly comment that we do not bear Mr Thomas any personal ill will, nor wish to negatively impact his business in a punitive fashion. We do however feel justified in pursuing any legal avenue available to reach a satisfactory fulfillment of our and other customers' grievances.

We have heard unconfirmed comments regarding personal problems that may have impacted Mr. Thomas' business and personal life, and we wish him the best if that is true. However, we also must recognize that Mr. Thomas has significant outstanding business commitments which hopefully can be addressed in the near term before his business suffers further.

Let's hope Mr. Thomas can pull his business back from the brink, and resume providing quality vintage stove restorations. After all, there are a lot of preservation minded customers out there that would like to save their vintage stoves from the junk pile.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Nov 28, 2007 9:38:30 AM


By the way, for anyone interested in the details of our stove:

circa 1934 Estate Fresh Air
8 burner, with griddle
2 oven
custom factory paint scheme


Some photos are here:
http://share.shutterfly.com/action/slideshow?a=67b0de21b337a26a4500&sid=8AYtmTZi1aM2wo&auto=0&m=1&d=1196271555481


We also found another smaller donor Estate stove that we bought, and Mr. Thomas has in his possession, to repair/replace the automatic oven rack system, built-in toaster(non functional/unsafe), and overhead light and vent for our stove... among other replacement parts.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Nov 28, 2007 9:45:09 AM

Hi Stevan. I have not received the kickplate that you indicated would be sent on Nov 13. Can you please send it and email me a tracking number? Thank you.

Posted by: brooke schooley at Nov 29, 2007 5:36:10 PM

I too have been a victim of Stevan Thomas. When I first contacted him in early spring of '07 he made a point of telling me that he had restored the stove that was being used on the "Rachel Ray" program. My husband and I were having a home built in Colorado and designing a kitchen that would compliment a 1950 O'Keefe & Merritt model 600-G gas stove. A contract was signed on 5/7/07 with expected delivery on 9/15/07 with a desposit of $3600.00

In the beginning we had great contact with him for measurements. Even our contractor was able to contact him. He called me in September and said he was running behing schedule and it would be finished in October. Come October and could not reach him. Finally reached him and he said to call him in a few days to remind him to send the pictures. Just like everyone else we called, left messages, I called the Chamber of Commerce, the Huchinson PD--thought he had died or something. I finally reached him and he was upset with me saying he needed to be out of town to get parts. He finally e-mail pictures of the stove (although the top was chrome when I had asked for white). I figured I'd take it anyway. He also e-mail the invoice for the final payments. I sent it and then a couple of days later I told my husband I should put a stop payment on the check but he said no, Mr. Thomas will come through. Two weeks past and no word. Finally my husband reached him and he said he was shipping three stoves the following week. That was the week we were moving into our home. No stove yet. We have contacted Lt. Fesler with the Hutchinson PD, filed a complaint with the BBB (Case #7429) and also with the AG's office. Our kitchen was designed to accommodate a 40" stove and will now have to be remodeled at great expense to accommodate a small modern stove - I'm cooking with an electric frying pan and a crock pot, have become ill over this, and like many of you, feel completely deceived. Mr. Thomas should not take on jobs he cannot complete or make promises he can't keep.

Mr. Thomas, since you apparently read this blog, we just want our money back - no longer interested in a vintage stove. I will be in touch with the Rachel Ray program.

Posted by: Stella Ledbetter at Dec 3, 2007 12:18:56 PM

wow! am i glad i found this site before i got any more involved with this person/company. too bad it cannot be linked to the major search engines when the company name, antique stoves or "just" stevan thomas is typed in. lots of people would have many less heartaches if they could be informed before they sign a fradulent contract with this fraud. he must be on a "roll" right now since he has not answered any of the blogs. maybe holidays get the best of him. yeah, right. i am sure we will hear from him soon.

Posted by: Ricca at Dec 4, 2007 9:41:08 AM

Wichita BBB sent out a "second letter to the business" today.

No response from Vintage Stoves to their first inquiry sent back on November, 28th.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Dec 14, 2007 11:13:02 AM

BBB has also sent second letter on 12/11/07. No response on first inquiry. Getting ready to check into filing lawsuit.

Posted by: Stella Ledbetter at Dec 14, 2007 12:31:36 PM

Wichita BBB sent out a "Final Notice to Company- Via Mail/Fax " today.

There has been no response to the BBB following their first inquiry sent on November 28th or the second inquiry sent on December 4th.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Jan 3, 2008 10:37:31 AM

What's the status of your situation, Al?

Posted by: Todd W. White at Jan 8, 2008 3:23:10 PM

I,too, have taken the Vintage Stove Express into hell!! After paying $7,900.00 for a 1949 Roper stove I am now paying for an attorney to help me get it. It's is not looking good. I have filed a police report, etc. but it looks like Stevan has gotten by with theft AGAIN. He seems to have been getting by with taking money and not delivering product for quit a while...shame on Hutchinson, Kansas for not helping people put him out of business.

I will continue to try to find a way to resolve this and hopefully keep him from stealing from someone else. He is a thief and should be delt with that way.

Posted by: kris at Jan 11, 2008 1:31:18 PM


Nothing to report for our case, other than it continues to languish...

I do check this blog a few times a week though to see if anyone else has an update, or any new victims have come forward.

The only news is that we are waiting for our BBB case to close before sending in our info to the KS Attorney General's office. There isn't any real reason to wait, but I felt better going "through the process" and being able to cite our best efforts to resolve the situation in the pleading.

We'll send in our letter to Rachael Ray's production company at the same time we send in our case to the Attorney General.

With that in mind, the BBB usually provides 7 days for the business to respond to the "final notice", which was sent on January 3rd.

Given that we've heard no response, and the BBB case notes don't indicate any feedback from Vintage Stoves either, I am expecting the BBB case to close any day now.

From my email conversations with the Wichita BBB, Stevan Thomas is pretty much ignoring their correspondence at this point. So at best, it is just record keeping and a public service to file with the BBB.

But I'd still recommend doing so, so that other potential victims that check the BBB can see that the problem is still current. Plus that data may prove useful to the KS AG.

I'll post as soon as the BBB case closes, when we file with the KS AG, and any updates that follow.

Good luck to everyone.

I'll say it again though, maybe some sort of "class action" type suit could save everyone time/money if one attorney handled all the cases?

Just a thought. I'm sure Vintage Stoves has snookered at least a few more folks than have found this site and posted here.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Jan 11, 2008 2:31:09 PM

I'm not sure he's REALLY the one who did and/or services Rachael Ray's CHAMBERS - our discussion group, the Chambers Rangers, had a member some time back that used a serviceman in the NY area, as I recall, who actually WAS the fellow who services RR's CHAMBERS. I talked to him once - very nice guy.

That said, I'd be hesitant to believe anything Mr. Thomas says - I personally know of one lady who's STILL waiting on her Chambers Thermowell Kettles from him, even though she paid him already.

This is why I keep a current listing of reputable repair places on my website for owner's of Chambers ranges - to protect people from being ripped off..

Posted by: Todd W. White at Jan 12, 2008 2:32:42 PM

MR. THOMAS'S BUILDING SEEMS TO BE UNMANNED.. A LOCAL LAW OFFICER SPOKE TO AN X-EMPLOYEE. SAYS HE HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH HIM MR. THOMAS ANY LONGER.... GOOD LUCK EVERYONE....

Posted by: JOANNE at Jan 14, 2008 1:39:58 PM

Any further news on this anyone????

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 6, 2008 3:37:36 PM

BBB has closed my inquiry - they received no response, better file quickly with the AG. I did back in November. They are pursuing but good luck getting your stove or your money. We finally bought a NEW stove last week after spending three months with NO stove and NO response. Found out from AG's office that there have been many victims. Leary of purchasing over the internet now.

Posted by: Stella Ledbetter at Feb 20, 2008 9:19:00 AM

After several months of working with an attorney I still have no stove, even though we went to court and proved that I had paid for it as well as the shipping...my attorney neglected to get thomas or his wife served (who is an officer of the corporation by the way) so thomas has my stove, my money and is moving to California. oh yes, he has been kicked out of his space in hutchinson, might be filing for bankruptcy, and is moving out of state..please talk to the attorney general in kansas before he leaves!!!! they have contacted me and would like others to file against thomas so they can go after him. I have also been told by our attorney here in arizona that we can get the post office fraud division involved and they are "bulldogs" about prosecuting people that receive payment for goods through the mail and then do not deliver......PLEASE FOLLOW THROUGH ON ONE OF THE ABOVE. I am going to get another attorney (one that will not feel sorry for every sob story thomas tells him) and go after his wife if I have to...i may not get my stove but i will get him by the short hairs before i'm done.

Posted by: kris at Feb 21, 2008 7:04:01 AM

Our apologies for not posting any updates in a while....

We had delayed posting any updates due to "one last chance" we recently provided Mr. Thomas to deliver our completed stove by "the end of February". After our posts on this site, Mr. Thomas called us at our home in mid January, 2008, after not hearing from him directly for approximately 9 months(he had answered a call from our attorney last October/November 2007).

He provided us with various apologies for not delivering our stove and not returning calls, attributing it to various personal issues we are all familiar with. He offered that if we would delay filing with the KS AG and posting further on this site, he would have our stove delivered to us "by the end of February" at no additional cost, other than the cost of shipping. And we could just keep the cobbled together loaner stove he had sent the prior Spring.

He also indicated that he was permanently closing his business, and working to resolve all outstanding issues with customers.

We found this arrangement acceptable, but also clearly let him know we would proceed with our legal options if after this final promise, he was unable to deliver. So we agreed to wait until March 1st to file with KS AG and take other steps.

However, I have sent Mr. Thomas two emails, one in early February, and one yesterday(2/20) asking for status, and if he was still on track for a late February or early March delivery of our stove. These emails have gone unanswered. We have also tried to call his business number, with no answer. Given that it takes FedEx or Vintage Transport a week or more to deliver stoves, we are losing any hope that a delivery in the next week will appear.

None of this is really a surprise unfortunately, but we will still wait until March 1st to file if he doesn't deliver our stove. Unfortunately given his typical lack of response and track record, we don't have a lot of confidence in that he will come through. Perhaps we'll be surprised though. It would be nice.

I would have waited until March 1st to post anything else, but along with the unanswered emails, I was contacted by John Green at the Hutchinson News, who is doing a story on Vintage Stoves and all of our problems with Mr. Thomas. These two developments stirred me to action a little earlier than originally anticipated. So I am posting this update.

It seems that Mr. Green wrote a story a couple years ago featuring Vintage Stoves as a successful local business, but was recently made aware of the almost 30 cases opened with the Wichita BBB and the blog here. So the paper thought it was time to follow up and cover the story.

I do not know when the story will run, but I do know that they are looking to publish it in the coming days.

If you would like to contact Mr. Green, please do so by today: February, 21st.

After that, I suspect the story will already be complete.

He can be reached at:

John Green
jgreen@hutchnews.com
1-800-766-5740, ext. 311


Mr. Green had expressed some concern if I posted his contact information here that he may be flooded with contacts after the story was complete. So please be considerate of his time if you see this post after the story has already run.

Given the recent uptick in interest on this topic, I thought it was better to get the word out though, just in case anyone has information that Mr. Green can report that will help others. I hate to have someone miss this opportunity.

If there is a free online link to the article once published that I can find, I'll try to post it here.


Good luck, and we're keeping our fingers crossed that Mr. Thomas will keep this most recent promise. We'll see in a week I guess.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 21, 2008 10:13:11 AM


BTW, today I sent emails to:

showcomments@rachaelrayshow.com

info@bigchillfridge.com


The former, "The Rachael Ray Show" of course still credits Vintage Stoves on their website for "set contributors" and did as of the last airing I saw some months ago in the closing as a sponsor.

The latter is another sponsor, that provided the big blue vintage repro refrigerator on the set.

I sent them both emails asking if they have any leverage with Mr. Thomas, especially in the case of the RR production team. And I asked if they could even consider getting actively involved. In the case of "Big Chill" I simply asked if they had any way to bring this to the RR production team's attention.

I have a physical letter packet prepared and ready to go as well to the RR show that I'll send off March 1st if we don't have our stove or a FedEx tracking number.

I don't know if it will help, but I'd encourage others to contact the RR show as well. Perhaps a volume of 20+ emails from different customers will get their attention, at the very least so they can consider discontinuing featuring Vintage Stoves as a sponsor and protect their viewers from this nightmare.

Al & Denise Roethlisberger

al_roethlisberger@yahoo.com


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 21, 2008 10:23:17 AM


BTW, my wife tried to call his business number again today. There was no answer and the voice-mail was "full". *sigh*

Al

al_roethlisberger@yahoo.com

www.isenhourhouse.com

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 21, 2008 11:13:19 AM

It looks like Stevan Thomas, aka STEVAN T. RADAKOVICH, has dissolved the corporation:

http://www.accesskansas.org/srv-corporations/getRecord.do?number=3756855


It doesn't say when the corporation was dissolved, and I'm not sure how that impacts anyone seeking resolution, but just an FYI.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 21, 2008 12:20:18 PM


FYI: I called the Kansas Secretary of State (785)296-4564 and confirmed that the corporation was dissolved on 02/19/2008. Again, I'm not certain what impact, if any, this may have on any outstanding litigation or settlements. This is just an heads-up.

I think this is common knowledge at this point, but the two corporate officers were:

President: Stevan T. Radakovich
Secretary & Treasurer: Rachel Radakovich


Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 21, 2008 1:15:46 PM


The newspaper article on the recent issues with Vintage Stoves is due to run in the Hutchinson News tomorrow(Saturday, 2/23/2008).

If interested, the article can be read free of charge on the day of publication at: http://www.hutchnews.com/

After publishing, the article can be read for a small fee via their "archives" section. Just do a search for "vintage stoves", and you will also find the original article from October, 26th 2006.

However, if you are one of Vintage Stoves' customers, you may be able to ask John Green at the Hutchinson News if he can make the article available to you free of charge. I may ask him as well if we can post the article here in its entirety.


On an interesting aside, a quote from the October 26th, 2006 article caught our eye:

"A T-shirted worker a few feet away installed new copper tubing on the
skeletal porcelain innards of another stove, while a newly arrived beige stove with fading scrollwork awaited a ride up a freight elevator that pre-dates the stove. "


That "beige stove with fading scrollwork" is our stove... kinda choked my wife and I up to hear it was sitting there waiting to be disassembled on October 26th 2006, 11 days after it was to have been completed and shipped to us. It's long ordeal was only beginning, and it is ironic that it was mentioned in this article so long ago when we still held so much excitement for our treasured stove. If only the Hutchinson News had known then that things had already started to go downhill.

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8AYtmTZi1aM2w5

It's like a member of the family can't return home...

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 22, 2008 9:09:05 AM


I just got off the phone with the attorney handling the Vintage Stoves complaints filed with the Kansas Attorney General's office. He indicated that many customers have come forward in recent months, and after working with Mr. Thomas, his office is about to take action. Mr. Thomas is also apparently not returning the AG's calls at this time.

The AG attorney has instructed us to file immediately, and if anyone else has held off doing so, to do the same right away.

If Mr. Thomas comes through on our(or your) stove, which would still be the ideal resolution, then filing with the AG will cause no harm. But he stressed that if there is resolution to be had through the AG office, you should file right away to make certain that your case is included in the imminent action.

Without going into specifics, again, if you have not yet filed with the Kansas Attorney General's office, do so immediately via FAX or overnight mail.

Information on filing your complaint can be found at:

http://www.ksag.org/content/page/id/98

You can also submit your information online, and mail or FAX supporting documentation immediately following as needed.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 22, 2008 10:24:00 AM

Wow, I wish I'd found this blog six months ago. I put down a deposit last November, with delivery in March. I called about a month ago to check on the status, and didn't really think anything of it when I didn't get a response. No response to an email last week either. When I called again yesterday, however, and got a weird mailbox response, I did some internet searching and this is what I found. I feel completely sick. I'm rehabbing my whole house and the stove was to be the centerpiece of the kitchen. I sent Stevan Thomas an email yesterday demanding my deposit back, and demanding that he contact me immediately. I am, obviously, not holding my breath.

My question, for Al I guess, is should I go ahead and file with the Kansas AG even though technically under the contract he still has a couple weeks to get me my stove? I don't want to miss out on participation in the action, when it is perfectly apparent from the situation that he has no intention of performing on the contract, and I'm sure never did.

Posted by: Cameron at Feb 24, 2008 1:59:31 PM

Hi Cameron,

First, let me express my sympathy for your concerns as we can all empathize with your anxiety. Perhaps Mr. Thomas is indeed working on your stove, and in theory it is true that he could deliver the product in time. This would be the ideal outcome. But based on the current issues I would recommend at least preparing yourself for alternate approaches in case that doesn't occur.

Second, I would at least call the KS AG and ask for the attorney handling the case and ask his opinion on how you should proceed.

Good luck.

Al


P.S.

As an aside, now that the Hutchinson News story has run, I can expand a bit on the content. From my conversations with some local sources, Mr. Thomas *is* in his building, at least as of early last week. He is working on stoves, and did have 4 or 5 finished and on the dock ostensibly ready to be shipped. He also had another 4 or 5 that he indicated that he was working on next to get together in the "next 90 days". So perhaps there is some hope some customers may receive their stoves. We'll have to see. The other challenge is that according to local sources, Mr. Thomas has had his lease terminated and was given notice in January. So even if he is working on the remaining stoves, it may prove challenging for him if he is indeed forced to vacate his warehouse.


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 25, 2008 7:13:59 AM

I've been a lurker here for quite some time -- I, too, contracted with Mr. Thomas over a year ago and have yet to see the oven or hear from him. Two things:

1. Many, many thanks, Mr. Roethlisberger, for your thoughtful, thorough, and well-tempered postings. I'm sure I'm not the only one out here who is very grateful to you for keeping us apprised of your progress and for suggesting useful ways to deal with this very frustrating situation.

2. Go to the Vintage Stoves website (www.vintagestoves.com). Mr. Thomas has just posted a long account of how his building was taken over -- locks changed, windows nailed shut -- last night. Apparently all of our stoves are in the building. he has posted contact information for the people who ostensibly took over the building and suggests that we contact them if we hope to get our stoves back.

Good luck!

Catherine.

Posted by: Catherine at Feb 25, 2008 8:39:45 AM

If you believe Stevan Thomas Radakovich and that this wasn't all carefully orchestrated by him and his buddy Dan. You are crazy... Hey Steve don't you live on top floor of the building? That would be very strange that you didn't know they were in the building that you live in. With changing the locks and nailing the windows shut. That is hard to believe. This all sounds like the usual fraud from Vintage Stoves and Stevan Thomas Radakovich. Pretty strange timing. He closes the corporation. The news paper article comes out that is not to favorable to him and his "Business" The article also gives him the out with stating he was given notice to move. The property that Stevan Thomas Radakovich probably still owns. And maybe owns with his good buddy Dan. He post this notice on the website. If that is true why didn't the newspaper cover this breaking story??
And were not all left to think that this wasn't all carefully orchestrated I am sure this is just another sham.

Posted by: Susan H at Feb 25, 2008 11:04:38 AM

Summary: Call Dan Brizendine. Dan is happy to take your calls and start the process of identifying stoves and making Mr. Thomas' customers whole. He has indeed taken possession of the Vintage Stoves premise. He is working with the KS AG.

Email: danbrizendine@sbcglobal.net
Cell: 620.960.0443


**********************************************

*sigh*.... where to start?


Well, I just got off the phone with Brad Dillon and Dan Brizendine(multiple times)....

As with many things, the general events of Mr. Thomas' posting on www.vintagestoves.com are correct, but the details are at best seem misleading. After chatting with Dan, this appears to be another one of Mr. Radakovich's clever tactics... one that will fortunately likely serve his customers rather than deflect the issue further. I think it has now gone so far, that is thankfully impossible.

Dan is receiving so many phone calls from customers that he can direct to the KS AG that it is a real blessing.

A little background from Dan:

Dan was an early customer of Mr. Radakovich, and then Mr. Radakovich enticed Dan to assist in buying the warehouse and other support. It's a longer story, but that's the jist.

Dan and his wife own the buildings in use by Vintage Stoves, and they have been trying to vacate Mr. Radakovich since last Fall due to a string of deceptions and financial pitfalls. The buildings have been on the market for some time, but understandably have had issue with showing them. This is a long story, but basically Dan and his wife assisted Mr. Radakovich and the business through some financial difficulties, buying the buildings when Mr. Radakovich had financial problems and leasing them back to him, etc. But that now has left Dan and his wife in an unfortunate situation.

I unfortunately agree that it is likely true that Stevan Thomas Radakovich did orchestrate much of the all the events of the last year, but at this point I personally do not believe that Dan Brizendine or his wife Jennifer Randall are complicit. From my conversation, it appears that they not only too have been taken for a financial and emotional ride by Stevan, but also likely have absorbed an even larger financial hit than many of us.

Although Mr. Dillon has represented Mr. Brizendine and his wife before, Mr. Dillon is not their attorney currently or in regard to this issue. Mr. Dillon is a pleasure to speak with, and expressed his sympathy as he too has read this blog recently. He directed me to call Mr. Brizendine directly, and indicated that Mr. Brizendine would be happy to speak with me or any customers of Vintage Stoves.

As an aside, Stevan has actually resided at 720 N. Plum for some time according to Dan, not in the warehouse.

Stevan told Dan last week that he had planned to vacate the building by last Friday, and "he could have the keys". So Dan went in late on Friday evening, changed the locks, boarded the windows, and has been sleeping in the building with his dog over the weekend. He has been in touch with the KS AG, and is hoping to hear from all customers that need assistance.

Dan's words are, although painful(due to all the calls and email), this posting on the Vintage Stoves website is probably the best thing Stevan could have done. Dan has received innumerable calls today from many other customers that never saw this blog, and had even up until just a few weeks ago were still signing contracts and placing deposits with Vintage Stoves. Stevan apparently just took another $4-5000 deposit from a woman in Canada just the other week, and she just called Dan panicked. Poor woman.

Sadly, the breadth of this disaster seems like it could be quite a bit more extensive than even we have thought. But Stevan's posting is fortunately bringing them out of the woodwork even more than this blog has. That is excellent.

Give Dan a call, register with the KS AG, and perhaps expect a call from Stevan with some sob story claiming his virtue and Dan's fault in that he kept working on stoves right up until the end, as he could have walked away and declared bankruptcy at any time and customers would have had no recourse due to the contract language. He just chatted with my wife and gave her that excuse... after nothing since last January, and months before that nothing.... amazing.

Stevan, if you are reading this: You have had numerous opportunities to make us(and other customers) "whole" both through informal agreements with customers and formal negotiations with the Kansas Attorney General's office. Although I have posted regularly on this blog, I think I have been fair and patient, trying to provide impartial and measured factual information. However, the time for last minute phone calls and pleas for additional time is exhausted. Perhaps I have been too patient, but at this point I do not have any confidence in your promises to deliver. We consider this a matter for the State of Kansas Attorney General's office to handle at this point. It is unfortunate.

We will be assisting the KS AG in every possible way to bring prosecution and remedy against Stevan Thomas Vintage Stoves and Stevan Thomas Radakovich.

Beyond the pure financial impact, Mr. Radakovich manipulated and defrauded families in one of their most sacred of concerns, their home. This has caused much emotional distress, and is inexcusable.


Beyond this point, I will continue to focus on reporting the status of the overall case as I am made aware and believe to be accurate.

Al


P.S.

One can read the Hutchinson News article from Saturday online here:

http://www.hutchnews.com/Localregional/stove


The paper is planning a follow up story in the next day or so based on recent events. So keep your eyes out.

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 25, 2008 2:47:39 PM


The Hutchinson News has posted its follow up story:

http://www.hutchnews.com/Localregional/stovedispute


BTW, I have been speaking with Mr. Dan Brizendine and he's been taking photos of the facility. Many many stoves are totally disassembled and in disarray. We hope to get the photos online at some point in the near future to help folks possibly identify stoves, and to also show the general state of affairs.

Dan has been overwhelmed with calls, so it still may be a day or three before that begins to happen though.

Cheers,
Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 7:06:12 AM


As of 10am EST, www.vintagestoves.com website is completely down. It may have been taken down any time between 5pm EST yesterday and this morning, I have no idea.

If needed, I have the page from yesterday saved though.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 7:10:22 AM

Ah, my mistake, there was apparently a networking issue for a little while.

The page is still up.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 7:11:03 AM

We have begun to start seeing some photos of the "production line" at the Vintage Stoves facility, and it is appalling. Our stove, which ostensibly was to be completed by the "end of February" is just a stripped down rusty skeleton and was apparently being used as a workbench.

I'll try to setup a photo share this evening or tomorrow for what we have so far. It is apparent that many stoves were nowhere near completion.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 11:36:50 AM

***DEMAND YOUR STOVE!***

I kept all information (emails, images and contract), including Stevan Thomas' direct phone number (original posted as a direct line on http://www.vintagestoves.com).

STEVAN THOMAS DIRECT LINE: (620) 474-0299

***DEMAND YOUR STOVE!***

After getting into a shouting match about my supposedly completed stove (told way back in October that by November 1st, 2007 was going to be finished [gas test and bad weather for delivery] and have now recently found out by Dan Brizendine that it's just a unfinished shell sitting in the shop) Stevan hung up on me.

I am now reporting him to http://www.ksag.org/ and have heard that there maybe a Class Action Lawsuit in the works. I'm printing everything out as I type this and will be sending it out tomorrow morning.

I implore you, don't be a victim, fill out the Complaint Form found at http://www.ksag.org/content/page/id/98 and send all information you can to the following address:

Kansas Attorney General's Consumer Protection Office
120 S.W. 10th Avenue, 4th Floor
Topeka, KS 66612


Posted by: Jayson Spirtos at Feb 26, 2008 2:36:45 PM

Hi Jayson,

We are sorry to hear that you too have been victimized. Definitely stay in touch with Dan, and file with the KS AG right away.

I have also uploaded some photos to following URL:

http://s93.photobucket.com/albums/l69/aroethli/Stevan%20Thomas%20Vintage%20Stoves/


I'll update it with more if I receive more. I believe Dan is considering doing the same as he compiles photos while working with customers to identify stoves.

If I hear that he does, I'll update that here.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 2:58:18 PM

I just got off the phone with Dan and he's sending me photos as well. I also dug up the "completed" photo that Stevan sent. Will be posting soon.

BTW I live in Los Angeles, who here lives out of state that is dealing with this?

Posted by: Jayson Spirtos at Feb 26, 2008 3:08:04 PM

Al, I'm so sorry to see your stove like that -- the old picture you posted way back when was charming! Looking at those pictures makes one wonder just what Stevan WAS doing all those months we waited. Grim indeed.

FYI, I, too, have filed with the KS AG's Office, and I've talked with them on the phone. I've also been in touch with Dan via e-mail. Very nice guy.

FWIW, Stevan was supposed to be restoring a small copper Chambers oven for me. I had no hope of seeing it in the pictures posted already -- it's about 28" x 24" x 30", as I recall. He's had it since January 2007.

And Jayson, I'm out in Oregon -- another out-of-stater -- I suspect that the majority of Stevan's clients (former clients??) are from out-of-state.

Thanks to all who are keeping the information flowing here!

Posted by: Catherine at Feb 26, 2008 3:28:37 PM

Here's my pain:

http://hideho.net/stove/

Posted by: Jayson Spirtos at Feb 26, 2008 4:06:37 PM

I know your copper stove, it came out of a house I bid on @ auction, here in hutchinson on 21st street, I will find it for you! I'm sure this is one of a kind! what a small world! call direct for info!

Posted by: dan at Feb 26, 2008 4:08:30 PM

This post is in response to the legally-uninformed postings that have inundated this thread. I pay much attention to corporate matters, especially those that allege fraad for failure to provide contracted services.

I have much experience in transactional and litigation work involving corporate clients, having set up and maintained corporations in California, Nevada, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois and New York.

To plead for fraud, the Plaintiff has the burden to prove that AT THE TIME OF EXECUTION OF THE CONTRACT, that the Defendant had the intent to defraud. For this Vintage Stoves case, there is ample evidence that Vintage Stoves did not intend to defraud AT THE TIME OF CONTRACT.

For instance, as I learned herein, Vintage Stoves voluntarily met with the Kansas Attorney General to formulate a plan to fulfill all outstanding contracts. Further, Vintage Stoves worked diligently to meet the plan approved by the Attorney General, but was thwarted both by financial difficulties and the fact that one Danny Brizendine has locked Vintage out of Vintage Stoves premises without allowing Vintage Stoves the ability to retrieve its property.

That is a clear violation of Landlord-Tenant laws. As an example, if a tenant lives in an apartment and is evicted, the landlord is forbidden from seizing the tenant's property, but may evict, allowing the Tenant to retrieve his property, and then the Landlord must bring a civil action for payment of past-due rent.

Here, Brizendine has seized all of the property in the Vintage Stoves building, both the personal property of Vintage Stoves and the personal property of its clients. Therefore, Brizendine has possibly exposed himself to liability for civil actions from Vintage Stoves clients to reclaim their property.

Further, by seizing all property, Brizendine has exposed himself to civil action for liability for the entire debt of Vintage Stoves, as his actions suggest that he has a financial interest in Vintage Stoves.

Simply put, if Vintage Stoves and its President declare bankruptcy, the only legal action that clients may have is to bring a civil action against Danny Brizendine

I dont know a lot about the allegations posted herein. However, under KS law, a Plaintiff cannot even plead for punitives absent an Order from a judge directing the Plaintiff to amend their Petition for Punitives. To prove penalties, the Plaintiff must PROVE that the Defendant acted with malice aforethought and that the Defendant intended to disregard the rights of others. Both can be disproved by the fact that Vinatage Stoves VOLUNTARILY met with tthe KS Attorney General's oFFice, that the Attorney General and Vintage Stoves formulated a plan, and that Vintage Stoves moved forward on that plan. Due to financial difficulties and that fact that Brizendine has seized all of Vintage Stoves and its Client's property, that plan can no longer be fulfilled.

In essence, if Vintage Stoves files for banckruptcy, the only recourse clients have is to bring civil actions against Brizendine for unlawful detainer and for replevin (to get there goods back). I suggest hiring an attorney from Wichita to handle any such matters, as there have been some very questionable moves by Hutchinson attorneys in regard to actions against Vintage Stoves--as you may note, not one action against Vintage Stoves has gone to verdict, mostly due to the procedural inadequacies of Hutchinson, KS attorneys. PLeas check with the reno County courthouse to verify that no actions have goen to verdict and that several have been thrown out on procedural grounds. If you want to get you stove and or money back from Brizendine, then you should hire a competent corporate counselor from Wichita, KS.

As i Said, I am not an interested party in this mater, but I follow such matters closely, as Plaintiffs may often by liable for counter-suites for defamation and failure to perform, if they hire an inadequate attorney.

Good luck against Brizendine--its out of Stevan Thomas' hands now.

Posted by: Corporate attorney at Feb 26, 2008 6:28:32 PM


Ah yes, thank you for your consultation, "Corporate Attorney"

I think the Kansas Attorney General's office, and their attorney Mr. Molina, has the matter well in hand and we'll defer to their advice.

Thank you for explaining the situation such that we understand our risk of losing sight of the primary issue at hand though. You have inspired me to give additional thought toward how defrauded customers of Vintage Stoves can make certain we keep our eye on the ball, Stevan Thomas Radakovich.

A call to the USPS Inspector General's office will likely prove to offer sound advice as well regarding Federal charges. So I'll be sure to discuss that with Mr. Molina at the KS AG's office at my first opportunity.

And you are right, we should likely follow up with a civil suit, emotional distress, the whole "works", but against Mr. Radakovich. This has been sage advice indeed. Thank you.

If I sound sarcastic, my apologies. But this post by "Corporate Attorney" is simply so ridiculous, it is laughable.

Cheers,
Al


P.S.

This post from "Corporate Attorney" just further illustrates Mr. Radakovich's lack of respect and utter contempt for the intelligence of his customers. I guess considering past events, I can't blame him for thinking we are so gullible, but good grief *sigh*

If this isn't yet another alias used by Mr. Radakovich, my apologies. But I stand by my assumption until proven otherwise.


P.P.S.

And in case it isn't clear, at this point we(and I suspect for many others as well) sadly consider our stove(s) likely a near total loss, our deposit likely unrecoverable. If at some point we do recover either in part or whole, it will be a blessing and surprise.

One positive side effect of this final realization is that we no longer can be manipulated by promises or threats regarding delivery of product or funds. At this point, our primary goal has then become to assist the KS AG in the prosecution and resolution of this case successfully with due speed and vigor.

And Stevan, you can count on it.


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 26, 2008 8:28:11 PM

Stevan please do file bankruptcy, at least someone else can unwind your mess, and their word will be law, unlike your word. I cared very much for you as a friend, I saved you many times, starting with my grandfathers money, I recieved on my birthday, I gave it all to you. I gave you my all many times. I offered my home to you and your family, before I even knew you. My wife is very quite and gentle, she has never tried to hurt you or your family, she just wanted back the money we loaned you! we trusted you with our life, home and children, I will never understand why you set me up so far in advance. I didn't change my opinion of you until you said it was over and then didn't quit, But it's over now. It will be very easy to prove intent, The stoves you sold don't exist. The stove you sold to the pawn shop was stolen from Mr. Burton. That is going back to him now. I will be the human sacrafice you need, but nobody else can be hurt by you!!! Still your "distant" friend and yes I will help you at your trial, you are one of the smartest men in the world and a great artist! but you need help. My last post ever!!!!! use it how you may! slam me if you wish! it won't change me much! I'm now seasoned oak! Dan Brizendine 620-960-0443

Posted by: dan at Feb 26, 2008 8:41:42 PM

I'm reading this blog with sadness, horror and (almost) disbelief. I too was defrauded by Steve Thomas in 2006. He took my deposit, made promises for months, asked for the rest of the money (which I sent), then he disappeared. I had to call both the KS BBB and the local police departement, both of whom paid Thomas a call on my behalf. Ultimately, he delivered a stove, but it was defective (leaded gas), has lots of rust spots, is underpowered (barely able to make water boil). Even one of the burner grates was deliverd newly enameled, but broken (enameled over the broken spoke). I tried to get Steve's help with all of this but he gave dozens of excuses and ultimately refused to help. He did work over the phone with one of my repairmen to get the gas lead under control; but I had to pay the repairman. Even on the smallest of details, like asking Steve for an exact measurement on the stove so we could build out the kitchen to properly accomodate the stove, he couldn't do without error.

I wanted to return my stove, but Steve threw up a bunch of legal mumbo jumbo and I knew the effort would not be worth the recovery. Unfortunately, Steve is a suffering man and I feel badly for him. But I feel worse for all of us who have suffered because of his deceit. I hope the KS AG can get a settlement for us all.

Posted by: Marybeth Robb at Feb 27, 2008 11:05:59 AM

While doing various Google-ing for Stevan Thomas Vintage Stove references online, along with the owner of - - - - - - - - - (edited by webmaster, per individual's request) (if you are a tube amp buff as I am, this was a surprise), I found a great article the LA Times wrote back in 2003 when Mr. Radakovich was still operating out of his garage in San Bernardino:

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/valley/la-hm-stove27nov27,1,7710493.story?page=1&coll=la-editions-valley

The article is a nice read. I bet it was his watershed moment.

It's such a shame that the business has collapsed in this manner in just 3 short years. .....so much potential lost.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 27, 2008 12:07:51 PM

The KS AG's Office called me today.

My advice is for anyone who has suffered a loss at the hands of STR to contact them NOW and register their complaint NOW.

Do not hesitate - time is of the essence!

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 27, 2008 12:28:54 PM


We filed with the KS AG online last Friday, and as of today the KS AG has received(I called to verify) our detailed receipts, detailed photos of both stoves and all parts, copied canceled checks, contract, all emails(yes we saved them all), correspondence from our attorney, spreadsheet of all costs incurred, etc.... It's about 2 inches thick.

I have also just filed an online complaint with the Federal Trade Commission, which if accepted may place Mr. Radakovich and Vintage Stoves in the Consumer Sentinel(http://www.consumer.gov/sentinel/) public and law enforcement consumer and identity theft fraud database.

If interested, following is the link to the FTC online complaint form:

https://rn.ftc.gov/pls/dod/wsolcq$solcq.actionview


Al


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 27, 2008 3:06:15 PM


Correction, this is the working link to the FTC online complaint form:

https://rn.ftc.gov/pls/dod/wsolcq$.startup?Z_ORG_CODE=PU01


*sigh* .....it's been "one of those days" =P

Al

P.S.
The "Explain your problem" field states a limit of 2000 characters, but I found that it actually requires a bit less to accept the form. So if you get an oracle error about a field being too small after having typed a tome, you likely have over 1950-ish characters in the form box. Just hit the back button and edit it down a bit.

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 27, 2008 3:11:51 PM


United States Postal Inspection Service:

http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/forms/MailFraudComplaint.aspx

If *any* part of your transaction utilized the USPS, they too may have jurisdiction.

"Although the Inspection Service cannot resolve routine business disputes between companies and their customers, it can act against a company or individual if there is a pattern of activity suggesting a potential scheme to defraud."


I have filed a complaint with the USPS Postal Inspection service as well.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 27, 2008 3:23:10 PM


Awesome, it looks like the staff at the Rachael Ray Show finally got the message... after numerous emails to their general show contacts, the "ask rach" feedback, and letters from customers.

I also posted to their show/fan message forum, so maybe that got their attention as well.

Anyway, they've removed the sponsor reference on their "Tour the Set" portion of the website as of this afternoon. Vintage Stoves used to be listed right under Viking. Hooray.

http://www.rachaelrayshow.com/show-info/tour-the-set/

Thank you RR staff. Even with the Vintage Stoves website and physical property shuttered, anything that helps protect others from becoming victimized is a huge win.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 27, 2008 3:43:20 PM

Just sent out my "How Stevan Thomas Ripped Me Off" hobby kit to the KS AG today... and it felt great. It has a little bit of everything; including a 9 month timeline of emailed false promises and lies, an invoice asking for an extra $3,600.00 when my brother and I paid up-front (Stevan promised he would wave all freight fees if we paid in full) and a very nice fraudulent photo of a completed stove that doesn't exist (my favorite).

I've noticed that there has been some sympathy over the man.

F*CK THAT!

He lied, stole my money, demand more and took my trust.

Posted by: Jayson Spirtos at Feb 28, 2008 12:33:07 AM

Seems to be more here than meets the eye. Anyone know who this Brizendine guy is? Everything I read here tells me this is not a mere tenant/landlord issue - this guy is acting like he is vintage stoves.

Why is brizendine offering himself as a "human sacrifice" anyway? Got a feeling this guy has more to do with this failed business then anyone knows.

Best way to get to the bottom of this great mystery is to "follow the money"...

Posted by: Bill at Feb 28, 2008 8:21:54 AM

According to the Rachael Ray people, Stevan Thomas Radakovich (wow! guy has three names, like a serial killer!) instructed them to drop the links to vintagestoves.com - not Al.

Nice try, Al. Seems they were not concerned about all this hoopla.

This is too bad, really. Stevan seemed to have a pretty neat buis - LA Times story was great. I wonder what happened?

Posted by: Cindy H. at Feb 28, 2008 8:31:31 AM

Hi Cindy,

Thanks for the correction, regardless of "how", I'm glad to see it was removed.

Although I have a question:

Who did you speak with at the RR show to confirm this? I'm just curious as I've had a hard time reaching a real person there to talk with. I'd like to chat with that contact as well.

I tried to send an email to you via the email address you provided here: cindy634@yahoo.com

However:

"Sorry your message to cindy634@yahoo.com cannot be delivered. This account has been disabled or discontinued [#103]. - mta159.mail.re2.yahoo.com"


If you have a contact or working email, can you let me know?

Thanks
Al


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 28, 2008 8:48:15 AM

Comments:

1. Regarding RR's show - I have been trying to get through to them to get them to correctly identify her CHAMBERS Range (they've got the wrong model number listed for it), and to offer to send them operating and service instructions for it for years, yet no reply. Sent it again the other day to the e-mail Al gave - still no reply. If STR had them remove it, he must have their "private" contact info, which he may, but, unless he's shared it, Cindy, how did you get in touch with them? I'd really like to contact them.

2. As for Danny Brizendine - I've talked with him repeatedly, as well as the KS AG's Office. My take on him is that he is a too-nice-of-a-person who is too trusting of people, therefore they take advantage of him. He's not, as far as I can tell, attempting to act as though HE is VintageStoves - in fact, he's trying to get the KS AG's Office to take control of the distribution of the stoves and parts so as to assure they get to their proper owners. Of course, if STR has sold an item(s) to more than one individual - and he very well may have done so - then the AG's Office is going to have a heck of a time sorting it all out, as they will have multiple claims to the same item(s).

As for Danny Brizendine's veracity, I'm inclined to believe him - he seems genuinely upset that so many people have been harmed by a friend of his whom he knew was having problems. He sort of feels responsible for making sure they get some satisfaction from the mess that he saw coming. If he's really got a legitimate legal claim to the property and/or the contents, I do not know. That's something for the Court to decide...

3. I know of one of STR's customers who was EXTREMELY pleased with his work, his service, and his promptness in getting the job done. However, she found him when he was in his heyday - before these problems began. She recommended him on our Chambers Rangers Discussion Forum often.

That said, it would appear she became the exception, not the rule of late. If the records are still extant, it might behoove the KS AG's Office to go back through all of STR/VintageStove's customer list and make sure there aren't others they haven't heard from who might need to file a complaint.

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 28, 2008 9:07:46 AM


Todd,

I have just had a conversation with a contact on the RR production team. It took "starting at the top" at CBS and working the phone tree down.... but I finally reached a live person, and they seem interested in these developments.

I also spoke with the reporter from the LA Times article in 2003, so they have a heads up as well in case this transitions back to California in any way.

If you can send me your direct email and phone, we can chat.

Al

al_roethlisberger@yahoo.com


Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 28, 2008 9:23:27 AM


Correction, I had an email "conversation" with Mr. Colker at the LA Times.

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 28, 2008 9:28:10 AM

I know brizendine owns both 201 and 203 (next door) Plum Street and 203 North Plum Street is an underground night club called "The Temple". Underage drinking, drugs, you name it. "The Temple" is all over MySpace. Maybe vintage stoves had to go because the underground night club was more profitable.

Posted by: Jim Melling at Feb 28, 2008 9:34:35 AM

Hmmm....they must not have a phone there.

switchboard.com doesn't have a listing for "The Temple" in Hutchinson, and a Google search doesn't show them, either.

At least not on my computer... ;)

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 28, 2008 9:42:49 AM

Hmmm....they must not have a phone there.

switchboard.com doesn't have a listing for "The Temple" in Hutchinson, and a Google search doesn't show them, either.

At least not on my computer... ;)

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 28, 2008 9:42:50 AM

Did you look under "undergroung night clubs"? Why would it be in the phone book?

Nobody could really be as dumb as you.

Posted by: Jim Melling at Feb 28, 2008 9:49:51 AM

No, Stevan, er, "Jim" (your email address doesn't even match your name here), I didn't look under "undergroung night clubs", as there is no such thing as an undergrounG nite club.

I may be stupid, but I can spell.

Oh - the Hutchinson PD has never heard of this "undergroung night club" - of all the people in the city, you'd they'd know about it, IF it existed.

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 28, 2008 10:12:09 AM

Hi "Jim"

Again, this is getting so ludicrous, I just have to laugh.

Who at this point would attack the victims here? That says volumes.


Anyway, I also called the Hutchinson, PD and spoke to Detective Harcrow, and indeed they have never heard of this club.

See definition #2:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/redherring


Cheers,
Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 28, 2008 10:23:25 AM

I should probably let this go(see definition above *laugh*) but I also did a cursory search of My Space, and the only thing I found was an obtuse reference to "Temple of the Eternal Night" and "Hutchinson" which didn't seem to reference a club. Or maybe it does.

Anyway, it doesn't matter....

Al

Posted by: Al Roethlisberger at Feb 28, 2008 10:29:00 AM

At least I can claim 'typ-o' - can you blame your stupidity on anything? Did you really look for a listing for an underground night club?

I am still laughing at that, out loud, really!

Posted by: Jim Melling at Feb 28, 2008 10:29:27 AM

I guess the Hutchinson PD is stupid, too - they don't anything about it.

Posted by: Todd W. White at Feb 28, 2008 10:44:20 AM

I don't think it's wise or useful to insult the Hutchinson PD that might be able to help us in the future. As well, I think talking about a "Night Club" that may or may not have taken place is not the issue here. Can we stay on the main subject here: Stevan Thomas, owner of VintageStoves.com, the man that took our money and our trust.

Posted by: Jayson Spirtos at Feb 28, 2008 12:39:09 PM