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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I screwed up the other night and now have a Nascar stripe that starts on the driver's door and goes back over the tire. Since I have no choice but to run this through my insurance, I was thinking that the dealership (Bob Smith BMW) would do the best repair job. I have several questions, and would appreciate any help that anyone can offer.
Is the dealership my best choice, or does anyone know an excellent body shop in the San Fernando valley?
Will the dealership report this to CarFax, or should I just not worry about that?
How long should I expect this repair to take? (I'll have to get a rental car)
Should I get my hood repainted at the same time? I've got several rock chips in it.
Will the color match perfectly?
What kind of run-around should I expect?

Thanks to all for looking, and more thanks to those who reply. Needless to say, I'm feeling pretty down right about now, but I've got nobody to blame but myself.
P.S. Nobody was hurt, just body pannels and perhaps a wheel needs to be rechromed.
 

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I would not go to a dealer. But go talk to them and get an estimate. Getting estimates will show you who is thorough and detailed and who is not.

But you should stop by Doug's Customs in Chatsworth.

Tell them you are considering going to Bob Smith and see what they say.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What I learned this morning...

I went to Bob Smith for an estimate. The service rep said that they didn't have a body shop on the premises. They refer all their work to Precision Auto Body in Reseda. This shop is close to my home, and so is Doug's Customs. I'll visit both, unless someone can shed light on Precision Auto Body.

Thanks for the reply, JonM. :thumbup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
An Update

Yesterday afternoon I was able to visit 2 body shops. Here are my feelings on both:

Precision Auto Body. Large, professional shop. Their parking lot was full of cars waiting to be repaired, and ones that had been recently finished. The finished ones looked great. I could be sure that my repair would come out well within my expectations. However, the man who wrote up my estimate wasn't very friendly. I got the impression that I was wasting his time. While I was there, I overheard a phone call in which I could tell the client was upset that his/her car hadn't been started yet, even though the car was dropped off 10 days ago. The response from Precision was "We'll get it started tomorrow then!" Honestly, I don't know the entire story here, but I felt like they were stringing along the caller. Oh, and they want to keep my car for 3 weeks (minimum) which means that I'd have to rent a car for that time (more $ out of my pocket). Their quote was $3300.

Doug's Customs. Doug wrote up my estimate and was very friendly. His shop was not as large as Precision, but the work he turns out is every bit as good. While he specializes in Hot Rods and Harleys, he also had quite a few "regular" cars in the process of repair. Doug was very helpful, and had lots of good advice. He patiently answered all my questions and made me feel like he wanted my business. He said that the repair would take 7 to 10 working days. His estimate $2850.

I will be going with Doug's Customs. The work was comparable, but he made me feel comfortable leaving my car with him. I know (as best I can) that it will get repaired correctly. He also made me feel like he wanted my business.

All I can say, is Thanks, JonM! I never would have found Doug's without your recommendation.
 

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Excellent. I should have mentioned they do Harleys mostly. It's my perception they do cars to pay the bills and they do Harleys and choppers for fun. My memory is a little fuzzy, but I think Doug himself still does painting. He hired someone else to run the company so he didn't have to be bothered with it.

It's been a few years since I have had anything done there. They did some aftermarkets body parts on my VWs, both the 1.8T and the VR6. I would not recommend them if I had anything bad to say.

They were on an episode of Overhaulin' too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
JonM said:
They were on an episode of Overhaulin' too.
I'll have to ask Doug about that! :D
Your reputation for excellent work precedes you, so I know that a recommendation from you really means something. I'm not a customer of yours yet, but I'm saving my pennies to get some great leather stuff for my car.
Thanks Jon!
 

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Wise Choice

Precision Auto Body is a rip-off. I am trying to work with Bob Smith BMW to get some money refunded since they referred me to them, but if not, I wil post the gory detail on a fresh post.
 
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