Livewire guitars - Jemsite
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-21-2015, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Livewire guitars

Do not use Livewire guitars for anything unless you are OK with never getting your stuff back. Back in 2013 I commissioned Livewire guitars (Michael Carballo) to do some fretboard swaps for me on my RG570 necks after a glowing review form his friend and Jemsite member Sebastian. He was paid to do 2 vine inlays. I sent him both necks and two bodies I acquired from Chris Mai at Mai-guitars. Micheal was supposed to fit the neck pockets to the necks I sent him. He then ran into nothing but personal problems. Every time he had another problem I told him take your time get through it I can wait. One problem after another one delay after another. At one point I told him to send my stuff back and issue me a refund. He told me I had 2 options let him finish or get my stuff back as is but either way I was not getting a refund. I told him to finish. This job was to take 4 months and I caused one delay by insisting that the stem in the inlay be real wood as were the originals and not acrylic as Michael was used to doing. Fast forward to almost 2 years now and still nothing has been returned. I finally came unglued when I went to Livewire's Facebook business page and found under hours of operation "permanently closed". I immediately sent an email demanding my stuff back at whatever stage of completion they were at. He agreed that he would send my stuff back as is the next day. That was 4 months ago. Since then he has ceased all communications with all of his customers which tally up to almost 20 of us waiting on our stuff.
However since we have a contract (work order) and it is only an estimate for completion it is not criminal it is a civil complaint.This is what my local sheriff and Michael's Sheriff and fraud agent told all of us. Which gives him the right keep our stuff for the rest of his life. Now he has claimed to his local Sheriff that he is trying to get a loan to be able to afford to send our stuff back even though we have all paid for return shipping. And do not be fooled all of us have paid in full for a year or more. On top of that we have all offered to pay return shipping again in order to get our stuff back and agreed to no refunds. So why he is trying to get a loan I am not sure.

Sorry for the long post but I feel this is the only way I am going to have a chance of getting my stuff back since I and many others can't afford to sue the guy.

So if you know Michael and Katie Carballo please let them know every time I see a post asking about Livewire guitars I will be there to tell this story and insure that they don't get any further buisness. People need to know that if you send them your stuff plan on never getting it back.

And for anybody else, all of your work orders better have the clause "all items either purchased or customer supplied will be shipped back to the customer within 48 hours at customers request either finished or unfinished". This is the only way you can get around this crap that these people are pulling on their customers.
ddcmiller is offline  
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-21-2015, 08:19 PM
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Northern California
Posts: 2,511
Re: Livewire guitars

Sorry to hear about your hardship. I can understand big companies being slow sometimes, but aren't they (Livewire) a small business? I hope things work out for you.

I had the same two year issue with pre-Bill Schultz Fender from 1983-1984 (which was a major reason Schultz came from Yamaha to buy Fender and make them good again. All I got from Fender was delay after delay, and excuse after excuse and the CBS guys who took them over in 1965 really ran things into the ground as far as customer service. The story you tell me about your small guitar company who didn't follow through is pretty much exactly like the stuff CBS Fender did to many of its customers and authorized dealers on and off for 20 years.
63Blazer is offline  
post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-21-2015, 09:48 PM
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canadia
Posts: 1,969
Re: Livewire guitars

Sucks what has happen. I got a killer guitar from Michael but after the death of his father and another family issue, things went poorly.

I don't think he ever intended to screw anyone over, but like a lot of small business owners, he bit off more than he could chew.
Stealthtastic is offline  
post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-22-2015, 05:43 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Re: Livewire guitars

Yea I understand all that he has gone through even empathize with him. We have all lost someone very close to us. And did he take on too much work absolutely. But I have offered to take some of that off his plate as have others, no harm no fowl. And yet he still has not communicated or returned our stuff. There was a rumor that they were financial trouble and when we offer to pay the return shipping and ask for no refund why would he not jump on that and alleviate some of his stress in life and take some of that workload off his plate. Will we still be pissed yes but guess what we are going to be pissed no matter what so what is there to lose. We can't sue him for not fulfilling the contract (work order) because we demanded our stuff back as-is. He agreed to these terms and failed to follow through. So at this point anybody is going to be hard pressed to convince me that he will ever send me my stuff back.
ddcmiller is offline  
post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-27-2015, 09:08 AM
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 57
Re: Livewire guitars

Weren't they located in Palm Bay?

I pass through there every couple months, it's a straight shot up 95 for me. If it's of any help to either side, I'd be more than happy to make arrangements to pick up anything that needed to be shipped out (within reason, I drive a Sentra) to customers needing so. I can't pay for anyone's shipping, but I live directly next door to a UPS store and could help get parts out to the people who paid for him.

Either side can shoot me a PM. I've got no stake in either side, just have an opportunity to help resolve some issues.
RevDrucifer is offline  
post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-27-2015, 11:06 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 2,516
Re: Livewire guitars

I sold Livewire a guitar for him to use to convert to a Jem. Very sketchy all around. Horrible business practices. I had considered using him to do some work in the future but this one deal I did with him was enough to scare me away.

I know someone who used to work for him and he got majorly screwed over by Livewire. I would put Livewire guitars in the same category as a used car salesman.
moebius is offline  
post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-27-2015, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Re: Livewire guitars

Quote:
Originally Posted by RevDrucifer View Post
Weren't they located in Palm Bay?

I pass through there every couple months, it's a straight shot up 95 for me. If it's of any help to either side, I'd be more than happy to make arrangements to pick up anything that needed to be shipped out (within reason, I drive a Sentra) to customers needing so. I can't pay for anyone's shipping, but I live directly next door to a UPS store and could help get parts out to the people who paid for him.

Either side can shoot me a PM. I've got no stake in either side, just have an opportunity to help resolve some issues.
Thanks for the offer man. He is not going to release it to anyone other than the owner. One guy from Canada asked to have his stuff shipped to his buddy in the states here and Michael refused to do so because he could only to ship to the original destination for some reason or another.
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 08-01-2015, 11:28 AM
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: St. Louis, MO
Posts: 1
Re: Livewire guitars

I too commissioned Michael Carballo of Livewire to do a custom job on a mid '80's Roadstar II around June of 2013. At first communication was great. He would send me pictures of the painted components showing progress. Then in December of 2013, he asked for final payment, saying there were only a few things left to do. So, like an idiot, I paid it. Over $2000 total in the customization. Then, like a bigger idiot, I put a down payment on a custom Jem Swirl at around the same time. My last communication with him was in March of 2014, talking about a headstock decal. Obviously he was close to being finished!!! Then this whole move thing and his family issues started. I haven't heard back from him since.

He has my guitar, a hardshell case, and over $2500 of my money. Now I see on his facebook page that he is listed as permanently closed. The phone number on livewireguitars.com has been disconnected.

If anyone figures out a way to get property back from this crook, or even figures out a way to get in contact with him, please let me know.
cycolac750 is offline  
post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 09:20 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Re: Livewire guitars

Update. Michael has started selling the stolen guitars. Here is Clive Murray's body used on a guitar on the bay. http://www.ebay.com/itm/232089559661
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 04:31 PM
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Location: Orlando, FL
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Re: Livewire guitars

Report it to ebay.
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 07:59 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Re: Livewire guitars

I did. Also contacted the owner. Got no response from either. Just wrestling with the idea of picking it up to make sure it doesn't disappear forever.
ddcmiller is offline  
post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 08:04 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Melbourne, FL 32940
Posts: 3,348
Re: Livewire guitars

That doesn't look at all like a Livewire swirl.
sebastian is offline  
post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 05:35 AM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: iowa
Posts: 85
Re: Livewire guitars

It was done by him exactly as Clive wanted it. http://projectjem.tumblr.com/
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 06:39 AM
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Melbourne, FL 32940
Posts: 3,348
Re: Livewire guitars

Yes, that does look like the same swirl.
sebastian is offline  
post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-18-2019, 04:07 AM
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 1
This Michael carballo guy ripped me off of two swirled guitars a few years back that I paid for in full through eBay and PayPal . I bought he first one after being released from hospital following my heart attack. The whole fiasco with live wire guitars nearly induced another. I am heading over to Florida for work as i live in Australia and would love to look this guy up and would really appreciate if anyone has any details to let me know. Regards
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