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Thread: Gibbon Fiberglass
          
   
   

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  1. #1
    Raymond@gibbons is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Cool Gibbon Fiberglass

     



    Well I'm sure that there are some unhappy people out there .No matter what they buy or who they buy from , they will badger you to death . Well I dill with people everyday that buy a body from Westscott , Downs , Ratts . No one manufactures product is truely better than the others product . Every manufacture has there problems .
    We at gibbon fiberglass have been Praised by some and damned by others . It all depends on the expectations of the Customers .
    We have gone thru quite a few changes and I can assure you that this is not the Gibbons that you bought 4 years ago . We have the best staff a company could ask for and the quality is second to none now .
    As with an older car , We have only gotten better with age . Come by and see for your self .
    As for Mr. Rifle . I only wish that your car would have rolled out of our Darlington , Sc facility 6 months ago . You would have jumped with joy . Soory ! OH yea we do not and have not modified any Pete & Jakes frames thats how we got it .
    Last edited by Raymond@gibbons; 10-24-2004 at 07:27 PM.

  2. #2
    Bob Parmenter's Avatar
    Bob Parmenter is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Good to see you here Raymond. Looks like you've already been pretty active trying to give some help on the board. Much appreciated.

    To the best of my recollection there are three folks on this board who have Gibbon bodies. Looks like you've already read Henry's comments. You'll be glad to hear that Dan J. is happy with his '33 sedan body. And then there's me. My sentiments are closer to Henry's. To be fair, I bought my body about 13 years ago when Dwight still ran the company in NE, and Kyle was doing the assembly.

    I would disagree with you just slightly about problems being a result of the customer's expectations. The selling business has a lot to do with setting those expectations, and should take criticism when the expectations set are not met. Maybe you meant that, but it wasn't clear. In my case I expected to do some body work to smooth out some distortions, but the fitment of the deck lid was about as bad as anything I've ever seen in a glass body. Well, no, the worst I ever saw was some junk from AI, but they were in a different part of the market at that time.

    Since getting my body I've been involved with two Minotti '34 3 windows. Combined the two of them needed less than a cup of filler to get smooth. The one Poli-form '34 I helped a buddy with was only slightly worse. My own experience with Wescott bodies is by and large nearly as favorable. Not saying you're not correct, I'm sure all those companies have put out a blivet or two, (another buddy did a Downs that was horrible and was what pushed me towards Gibbon) but buyers look for patterns of disappointment. If you ask ten people and one says something bad, that's not too bad. If 6 say something bad, the company has a problem delivering. Unfortunately Gibbon has been more toward the 6 than the one in my experience.

    Your words of encouragement are a good thing. If there have been some positive changes in the past year to improve quality I tip my hat to the company. Earning back a good reputation is an uphill battle, I wish you all the best.

    Noticed that you posted some different company names associated with Kyle in some other posts. Did he leave Gibbon, or is he running some subsidiaries too?
    Your Uncle Bob, Senior Geezer Curmudgeon

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  3. #3
    Henry Rifle's Avatar
    Henry Rifle is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    I only wish that your car would have rolled out of our Darlington , Sc facility 6 months ago . You would have jumped with joy . Soory !
    Possibly, Raymond. However, mine rolled out 14 months ago, and I'm not jumping for Joy. There is not a statement in my post that is untrue to my knowledge. As I said, the door and trunk fitment is great. The gelcoat and the general shape of the body is fine also. It will not take a lot of work to put a nice paint job on it. However, the rest still stands.

    The inside window molding had gaps and didn't fit worth a darn. I had to completely redo them. The interior windshield molding doesn't fit at all, and the finishing around the windshield opening needs to be completely redone at the A pillars. You mention expectations. Well, I expected them to be close. How do you explain the rear package shelf being close to 2" out of level in the width of the car? How do you explain the fact that the body hit the transmission at the firewall AND in the tunnel- and the setup was supposed to be for the same engine and trans I used? How do you explain the fact that it STILL hit the tunnel (both servo and oil cooling lines)after I brought it back to Darlington (at my expense) with the engine and trans installed and you supposedly fixed it. Instead of refitting the tunnel, you simply cut out pieces and grafted more over the top. There are places in the tunnel where there are 3 layers of glass, and it's over 1 1/2 inches thick. Makes it a lot of fun when trying to install shifters and emergency brakes. Where the "repaired" tunnel was reattached to the firewall, the glass is so thick that installing a brake pedal was a real adventure. When you repaired the firewall, you put so much glass over the frame rails that it raised the body up 3/8", and destroyed the fit to the hood and hood side panels. The screws that hold the hood side panels to to the hood opening mechanism are drilled at an angle so the screws won't go in straight. When I cut the rear valence for tail lights one side of it was so thick that the studs to attach the lights won't reach. The wood reinforcing panels in the trunk are all set at wierd angles, and nothing is square. The body was just dropped over the frame and glassed in place. NOTHING underneath was finished.

    You talk about customer expectations. Well, I expected to do a lot of finishing. However, I didn't expect to redo a whole litany of items that should have been done correctly in the first place.

    If you want to come get the body - at your expense - and make it work like you say they should, you're certainly welcome. If not, my post stands. You can attribute it to an unreasonable customer, but in my book, that's not a reason . . . it's an excuse.

  4. #4
    Dave Severson is offline CHR Member/Contributor Visit my Photo Gallery
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    I have never seen Henry's body, so I can't comment on it. But I have dealt with Gibbons bodies on various projects since they were located in Gibbon, Ne. If you have made huge improvements in the last 6 months, that's great. However, having heard this everytime there was a move or regime change over the years I will have to withold comment until I see one in person. I sincerely hope they are better.
    Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, Live for Today!
    Carroll Shelby

    Learning must be difficult for those who already know it all!!!!

  5. #5
    robot's Avatar
    robot is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    It's posts like these that make me really glad that we bought a steel body.....it may not be straight but at least it's a constant thickness!!

    It is interesting that there are such varying opinions regarding a specific manufacturer.....is this because the manufacturer has such a swing in quality? Do they make a blooper and then keep adding 'glass till it looks good enough to ship? Do they short cure a body to get it out and then the body warps in the sun?

    Is there a significant price spread amongst the fiberglass vendors? I see some really nice glass roadster bodies out there but the prices approach steel stuff.....

    The Cobra forum seems to mirror the problem.....some good bodies, some not so good. IF I were going to buy a glass body, there are some basic guidelines that I would follow:

    1. Dont buy a body based upon low price. Set your expectations and then shop for the best value, not the lowest price. Your boss didnt hire the cheapest solution when he hired you, did he?
    2. Dont buy a body that you haven't seen and touched in the bare state.....before any work is done on them.
    3. Find a finished car and take some basic measurements to compare to the new body. Being off 2" is not acceptable. There are posts about "standard" tops not fitting some brands.....not good.
    4. Ask the manufacturer for five or ten references; throw these out because they are ringers. Ask for five more.
    5. Dont buy in a heat of passion. Pretty pictures of finished cars are cool but they are a long way from a bare body.
    6. Consider buying a roller from a professional where you can buy a body plus their expertise.....let them mount the darned thing. There are a bunch of professional builders on this site that are very competent. They can show you examples of their work. And, unless you value your time at $1 and hour, the pros are not much more expensive, if any. If you muck up the project and it ends up sitting in your garage for 10 years, the pros are much cheaper.
    7. The darn thing is going to cost more than you think. Period.
    Pro or amateur, this is always true.

    mike in tucson

  6. #6
    topsterguy's Avatar
    topsterguy is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Glass bodies

     



    "ray@gibbons" I was just reading your first post and I have to disagree with you on the quality diferences between bodies. There definitely ARE diferences and I've never heard a complaint about Wescott's bodies, especially the roadster ones - they are number one and the closest to them are outlaw, at least according to people I know who have outlaw bodies. A friend of mine here in Victoria bought a Gibbon 39 Ford convertible (new)a few years back and he wouldn't do it again. He had an incredible amount of glassing, modifying, and reinforcing to do to get it right Things "might" be diferent now but they were really bad then. I know one thing tho, I'm sure a LOT of guys wish there would've been these forums around when they were building their last hot rods!
    "nobody likes a top on a roadster, but it's nice to have one in the trunk when you need it!"See us at www.topsters.com

  7. #7
    Henry Rifle's Avatar
    Henry Rifle is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    No one manufactures product is truely better than the others product
    Ray,

    You have to know that's baloney. If it isn't, why would anyone buy a Gibbon body? Why not just buy one from the closest supplier? Anyone for a Street Beast?
    Jack

    Gone to Texas

  8. #8
    topsterguy's Avatar
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    Street Beast!!????

     



    Street beast!!??? Now THERE'S a bad body, okay....... bad kit!!! I can't believe that ANY magazine is still accepting their advertising, and even moreso that ANYONE is still buying them!
    "nobody likes a top on a roadster, but it's nice to have one in the trunk when you need it!"See us at www.topsters.com

  9. #9
    Henry Rifle's Avatar
    Henry Rifle is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    My point exactly.
    Jack

    Gone to Texas

  10. #10
    FFR428's Avatar
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    Car Year, Make, Model: 68 Cougar S code, 427 Tunnelport.
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    FWIW I have an Early Factory Five Cobra MK1 replica. The early FFR's were stated to have horrible bodies that needed many hours of prep before paint ready. At the point I purchased my kit new molds were tooled and mine is not that bad. It's not as good as the new MK3 but better then some MK2's I've seen. The way it was explained to me was as the molds become old their shapes and tolances vary resulting in a poor quality body and fitment issues. FFR has been branded for having some of the worse cobra bodys in the industry. I saw a ERA that was really bad and had a ton of spider cracks and gelcoat delaminations worse than ANY FFR body I've seen. The body panel fitment on mine is good with no major issues. No matter what glass body or parts you get there will always be some differences and issues with fit and finish. It's just the nature of the beast. Just wanted to offer my opinon being I have one of those "horrible FFR's" LOL. Good luck and hope you get things sorted. G.

  11. #11
    Raymond@gibbons is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Henry I see that you and many others out there do not like gibbon . I am not going to argue that every one has thier opinions and you can't nock a man for that . I just take offence to this because it's who I work for . It's like you are talking about me dirrectly . When I came to Gibbon it was a mess and there are still some things that need to be worked on and fixxed . We have a complettely naew crew from front to back . These guy's are here for thier love love of cars not money . I personaly took about a $20,000. a year pay cut to come here and work . It helps me stay mellow . I don't have to worry about paperwork ,budgets, expences or kepping 60 men from goofing off all day . I can come in and do what I have loved to do sence I was about 7 . Work on a car , chop a car , andcustom build a car from the ground up . I will not be complettely happy untill I can get something going all on my own with a select few but for know this is what I have to work with . I'm sorry to all the people out there that have been shafted by gibbon in the past . We are trying to get gibbon striaghtened out . Untill then I can only offer my appologies and say I'm sorry.

  12. #12
    Dan J's Avatar
    Dan J is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Raymond, I guess that I’m one of the lucky / fortunate persons to be satisfied with my Gibbon sedan. It was manufactured in late 2001 – early 2002. It appears that Gibbon let their focus move off of “business” at some point, and the dissatisfied customers are being heard from....

    Hard work, a good product, and taking care of your customers will eventually correct the company’s standing in the marketplace, but it certainly takes longer to regain your good name than it does to loose it.

    Best of luck to you.

    Dan J

  13. #13
    topsterguy's Avatar
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    Gibbon bodies

     



    Ray, as I mentioned in my last reply about the 5 window bodies that Ed at New Age is putting out - I figure it's only right to give credit as well as criticism where it's due. I'm sure that Ed's doing everything he can to straighten out the problems he's had with his products, and I'm sure that you are too now that you see and agree that there are problems with yours too. Guys in the position that you and Ed are in would be nothing short of fools if you sat back and said there were no problems where there were problems and did nothing to corredt them - you'd be down the road. I too hope you get it all ironed out and restore confidence in your customers, both past and future. As I've said, I'm one of the two guys that make Topsters (hideaway top frame kits for roadsters) and I guarantee you that if we hear of a problem with them ( and we REALLY hope we hear of problems so we can fix them) we look at it right away, before another one goes out the door. That's the way you keep customers happy, right?
    "nobody likes a top on a roadster, but it's nice to have one in the trunk when you need it!"See us at www.topsters.com

  14. #14
    Raymond@gibbons is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Topsterguy you are absolutely right . We do need to hear compliants . So we can continue to improve our line as well as you with yours . I just need to go ahesd and get the investers to gether to start up a new company with the best men and women I can get and get the best product to the street . It's hard to advance a company when the key people start to loose intrest in it . I need investors to start a company that not only manufactures bodies but will sell you any body you want . I want to do custom one off frames as well as cars . It makes it hard to sleep at night knowing what you need to do to advance a company but the man thinks it's fine . For a true car man that has the touch and feel and emotional atachment to what he does it's hard . But I will keep on truckin untill I can do what this industy needs from me as well as every other manufacture .ONLY THE BEST !!

  15. #15
    awsum34's Avatar
    awsum34 is offline CHR Member Visit my Photo Gallery
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    Raymond, Glad your here. I'm alway glad to see guys here to represent their product. I just wished there were more like you.
    As of any product you can here the pro and cons of the product. I never bought a Gibbons body before so i can't say anything.

    one thing i would like to know is why is everybodies messurements different? let's just use the 32's. Should all 32's be the same? One company is 1" longer of 2" wider or the doors of one don't fit another body. Shouldn't the molds come off a steel body?

    I had a 34 chevy (Downs) and a friend of mind has 34 chevy (Outlaw) you can sit back and look at all the difference.

    I'm not pointing blame. i'm just wondering.
    The only dumb question is the one you don't ask..

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