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Old 11-29-07, 07:24 PM   #1
Cripes2
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Lemon Law for Vintage Bikes?

A friend of mine sold a vintage Peugeot on Craigslist earlier this week. The buyer checked it out, took it for a test ride and found everything to be in satisfactory condition. Tonight he showed me an email from the buyer stating that he wonted his money back on the grounds that he has rights under the North Carolina lemon law. He claims the dérailleur bolt is stripped, causing the chain to continuously fall off, and that the rear dérailleur cable was routed incorrectly. Does anyone here have any experience with customers demanding there money back on Craigslist? I believe his words were that if he didn't pay him his money back then he would be paying his court bills. My friend said he had the bike in good working condition before selling it, I am suspicious that the buyer caused these problems himself. Either way are Craigslist sellers obligated to give refunds? Any suggestions on how to handle the issue would be very helpful.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:26 PM   #2
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I don't believe you're in anyway obligated to refund any money. It's like a garage sale. You could take the bike back and refund him if you want. But it's not like you are a car dealer, or a store of any sort.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:28 PM   #3
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When ever I sell anything on CL I make sure the buyer knows the item is sold as is with no warranty implied or written. I usually get a bill of sale signed by the buyer stating the same and if they aren't willing to sign then no sale.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:34 PM   #4
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Anytime someone says do it or else, I say else. How bad could it be? Just politely say a deal is a deal and leave it at that. Next move is his.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:35 PM   #5
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A friend of mine sold a vintage Peugeot on Craigslist earlier this week. The buyer checked it out, took it for a test ride and found everything to be in satisfactory condition. Tonight he showed me an email from the buyer stating that he wonted his money back on the grounds that he has rights under the North Carolina lemon law. He claims the dérailleur bolt is stripped, causing the chain to continuously fall off, and that the rear dérailleur cable was routed incorrectly. Does anyone here have any experience with customers demanding there money back on Craigslist? I believe his words were that if he didn't pay him his money back then he would be paying his court bills. My friend said he had the bike in good working condition before selling it, I am suspicious that the buyer caused these problems himself. Either way are Craigslist sellers obligated to give refunds? Any suggestions on how to handle the issue would be very helpful.
By "lemon law," does he mean this?

If so, would any reasonable person believe that the buyer has "rights" under this law that apply to purchasing a used bicycle?

For what it's worth, whenever I sell a used item, I draw up a bill of sale that clearly states the item is sold "as is." I sign the bill of sale, and so does the buyer. No confusion about what I represented to the buyer that way.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:37 PM   #6
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How much did this bike sell for? Court costs? Wouldn't it be small claims?

Sounds like somebody's trying to use scare tactics. Was this a local sale? Was there shipping involved?

I guess your friend has to decide if it's worth the hassle to call his bluff and see what happens.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:42 PM   #7
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How much did this bike sell for? Court costs? Wouldn't it be small claims?

Sounds like somebody's trying to use scare tactics. Was this a local sale? Was there shipping involved?

I guess your friend has to decide if it's worth the hassle to call his bluff and see what happens.

I think he sold the bike for around $100, it was a local sale. I think you are right about the scare tactics, I have been looking and I don't see how any used vehicle can be covered under the lemon law, much less a bike.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:50 PM   #8
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I doubt that he would go to the expense of taking you to court. If your friend genuine sold the bike in good condition, just tell the buyer that the sale was as-is, and forget about it. You have to remember that there are a LOT of crooks on craigslist, and it works BOTH ways: a lot of sellers are crooks, and a LOT of buyers also are crooks.
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Old 11-29-07, 07:56 PM   #9
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I say your friend should just calmly and politely tell the buyer - I sold you the bicycle in good faith. You had a chance to look the bicycle over before you bought it. You were satisfied with it when you left. The lemon law does not apply to the sale of used bicycles. Sale complete. No refund.
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Old 11-29-07, 08:06 PM   #10
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The bicycle needs relatively simple, inexpensive repairs to be made ridable. What's the big deal?
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Old 11-29-07, 08:14 PM   #11
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Hmmm, but the chain didn't happen to fall off on the test ride, correct? How easy is it to route a rear derailleur cable incorrectly? Probably not too easy as they route off of the chainstay and loop onto the RD. If the seller used photos to sell the bike on CL he could compare those to what the bike currently looks like. I'd guess the buyer tried to change the RD and messed up the threading.

For items I sell on CL I add a "Used Item -- Sold AS-IS" comment in the description so these issues don't come up.
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Old 11-29-07, 08:30 PM   #12
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This all sounds good, I don't think he did anything wrong and he should tell the buyer that he knew it was used and had a chance to check it out. Hopefully the buyer will back down realizing his bluff has been called. I'll tell him from now on to add the clause about being sold "as is" and I will start doing the same. Thanks for the advice.
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Old 11-29-07, 08:35 PM   #13
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The lemon law does not apply. Caveat emptor applies.

http://dictionary.reference.com/sear...aveat%20emptor
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Old 11-29-07, 08:38 PM   #14
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Tell him to suck that very same lemon.
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Old 11-29-07, 08:52 PM   #15
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Peugeot? Stripped derailer bolt?

Did this machine have a threaded derailer hanger in the first place? If it's running a non-threaded Simplex, it could be that El Lemon Lime customer tried removing the nut at the back, or tried sticking another Simplex on it without putting the nut back on.

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Old 11-29-07, 09:31 PM   #16
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Per most laws and statutes, it depends on how the bike was described in the ad, and the sellers ability to "prove" his case.

Words like excellent, good, awesome, mint, cherry, beautiful, etc - descriptive words - are subjective and subject to intrepretation. Can't be proved in court. Excellent mechanical condition is also subjective and hard to prove otherwise in court - it can't be measured and it's subjective.

For a $100 bike tell the guy to go away and sue if he wants - that would be a joke.
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Old 11-29-07, 09:35 PM   #17
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vintage Peugeot : buyer is a numbskull

> A friend of mine sold a vintage Peugeot on Craigslist earlier this week. The buyer checked it out, took it for a test ride and found everything to be in satisfactory condition. He claims the dérailleur bolt is stripped, causing the chain to continuously fall off, and that the rear dérailleur cable was routed incorrectly.

If this is a vintage Peugeot, then it very likely has a Simplex derailleur hanger. These hangers cannot be stripped, because they have no threads in the first place.

The Simplex derailleurs that go on these do not have a threaded bolt either. It seems as if the buyer was screwing around with the rear derailleur and messed it up. He was probably thrown by the fact that Simplex derailleurs are removed by taking a hex key to the back of the derailleur. Trying to remove the derailleur from the front is a sure way to destroy these units. My guess: buyer error.

Second: to want a refund on a bike because the derailleur cable is wrong is pretty pathetic.
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Old 11-29-07, 10:02 PM   #18
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In this case, I'd avoid a pointless confrontation and offer to take the bike back and refund the money in full. Then, I'd make the repair and sell the bike for $125. I wouldn't offer to fix whatever the problem is; the deal would be I take the bike back or the buyer keeps his lemon as is. The whole lemon-law thing is ridiculous in this case, but if your friend is a regular flipper, there's no reason to get all bent out of shape by one Ralph Nader wanna-be buyer.

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Old 11-29-07, 10:05 PM   #19
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I have a couple of related experiences selling on CL. I sold a bike to a young college woman. About ten minutes she called back and incredulously asked where the lock to the bike was. I said there was no lock in the sale. (And there had never been one on the bike when I showed it; nor had anyone mentioned one.) I really did not want to sound harsh, but I said that locks and bikes were different, and I had sold her a bike. She was clearly pissed and hung up thinking I had ripped her off. Oh well.

Another time I sold a fixed gear conversion with a respaced/redished rear wheel. A couple of days later he called back saying the rear wheel was badly out of true. I told him to bring it back and I retrued it. I have seen him around town a couple of times and so far the wheel has held up. He was a nice guy and the bike was nice, and so I just could not bear the thought of it having a sick wheel, so I was glad to help out.

I guess I would just assume that if I bought a used bike that it was my baby as soon as the money changed hands. Seems pretty strange to me that one would think otherwise. I wonder if it is the Ebay world we live in where everyone is sort of a "store". And as a store we are expected to act like one. I am not defending the attitude, just trying to understand it.

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Old 11-29-07, 10:06 PM   #20
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So any info on what derailer it is?
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Old 11-29-07, 10:12 PM   #21
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I guess I would just assume that if I bought a used bike that it was my baby as soon as the money changed hands.
I think it would depend on the circumstances, though. Was the ad and presentation of the bike honest? if so, I would assume that I bought it as-is.

On the other hand, if the seller lied about it in some way that isn't apparent with an ordinary inspection, or concealed damage in some way that isn't apparent, then I wouldn't feel that I made a bargain that includes the lied-about problem.
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Old 11-29-07, 11:40 PM   #22
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You may consider giving the moron his money back, you never know these days, the guy could go tilt and kill your friend.
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Old 11-30-07, 01:22 AM   #23
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I agree with the burden of the bike now being the buyer's responsibility. Unless your friend intentionally ripped him off, which sounds contrary to your story, the buyer is either trying to weasel his way out of a decision he regrets because of his own fault of not making a thorough inspection prior, or he's just a cheat. And if your friend goes to court and loses, then let the revolution commence!
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Old 11-30-07, 06:59 AM   #24
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Whenever I sell anything on Craigslist, a meeting is set up somewhere nearby in a large public parking area. And the buyer never gets anything more than my first name and cell number. It's very easy to ignore any idiot problems that way. I'll do everything I can to make something right, but some people are simply not sharing the same reality or can never be satisfied. Those people I ignore.

I've met some really odd people from Craigslist ads. I do not want them to know where I live or who I am.

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Old 11-30-07, 07:48 AM   #25
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Sounds like the buyer is a touch psycho.

Over $100, I would take it back & sell it to one of the 20 other people that responded to the add.
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