Collector’s Dream Becomes Collector’s Nightmare

By Staff

PO Box 523 Albany, Louisiana 70711

In the March/April 1985 issue of the Gas Engine Magazine, a
large two page ad was printed introducing a half scale model John
Deere. The caption of this ad was ‘A Collector’s
Dream.’ It has in fact, become a nightmare. This article is to
inform those of you who have already ordered and to warn those of
you who might be considering it.

Another gentleman and I promptly ordered two of the engines,
enclosing our money order for $ 1050.00, made payable, as told, to
a Mr. Terry Wiegand. The ad claimed three to four months for
delivery. In November, we received a letter from Mr. Gene Dettmer,
of Dettmer Industries, explaining that he was ‘in
negotiations’ with Mr. Wiegand to purchase the rights to the
engines, and that the delivery date was delayed until between
Christmas and Valentine’s Day.

As you have probably already gathered, we still haven’t seen
our engines. I have been in touch with Mr. Dettmer several times
since the November letter and was told nothing of any substance,
only that Dettmer Industries was trying to fill the orders.

Suddenly, I received a letter dated April 21, 1986, explaining
that Replica Production Motors (RPM) has acquired the rights and
patterns of the replica engine, and that Dettmer Industries was out
of business because of miscalculation of production expenses. I
assume this letter was mailed to everyone who ordered the engines.
It explained that ‘Combined Financial Services has been
retained to handle RPM’s account, and that Peoples Federal
Savings and Loan Association has been asked to be the depository
for RPM.’ Questions are to be directed to CFS, who are said to
be the accounting and business advisor for RPM.

The letter stated that their records indicate the payment for
the two engines, but disclaimed any obligation to honor the orders.
They would, however, fill the order if we sent another $350.00 for
each engine (total of $700.00). We were given a 15 day deadline in
which to make our decision. If they didn’t get a response from
us within that time, the letter stated that the offer would be
void. No mention was made of refunding the money already paid.

I am not accusing any of these companies of being deceitful or
fraudulent. If you or someone you know has any information
concerning this situation, I would certainly appreciate hearing
from you. Also, I am asking the other people who have ordered these
engines to contact me. My address is above; home phone:
504-567-1539, work phone: 504-567-5100.

Editor’s note: The GEM staff has had some communication with
Mr. Wiegand during the past year regarding his original
advertisement and the events which followed. In a letter dated
April 10, 1986, he said, ‘Please have the fellows contact me
that write to you. Together we are going to get the problem
resolved.’ It is certainly our hope that the matter does get
resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.

Mr. Wiegand’s address is 308 Terrace Drive, Waterloo, Iowa
50702. His attorney, who is working on this, is Susan Keith, 612
Mulberry Street, Waterloo, Iowa 50701. 319-236-2228.

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