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  1. Ponte's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2006
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    245
    Dec 15, 2012, 12:33 PM - Clearing the Smear Campaign #1

    For those of you keeping up with the original thread, I'm sure you've seen my final word in the matter. I still feel as if I need to start a new thread to give myself the means to defend myself in what has been a one-sided smear campaign.

    My goal is to provide quality work. From anyone that's either seen it on this forum, Facebook, or in person, I strive to include every movie-accurate detail for any Boba Fett costume I paint either for myself, or for commission. When other people wear my work, I take that as an extreme compliment. With that, I need to make sure that whatever I'm commissioned to work on meets MY standard. With that standard, comes time...a lot of it.

    It has taken me almost 5 years to complete my Boba Fett. In those 5 years, I have painted dozens of commissions ranging from helmets, full armor sets, soft-parts, etc. I've done repair work on shoddy paint jobs, repaints; anything to create a movie accurate Boba, be it Empire Strikes Back or Return of the Jedi SE.

    I unfortunately could not meet one of my customer's time lines due to a lack of completion-time and resources. This turned into having my name and reputation dragged through the mud. As a transitioning veteran into the civilian sector, I had to deal with a lot of B.S. that the VA wasn't able to snap its fingers for to automatically "fix". This is the personal truth, not a sob story. I don't expect or want sympathy from anyone, especially the Internet.

    I have noticed a trend on this forum that is leaving me puzzled, main example being with the impatience for the deliverance of goods from Fettpride. I can't fathom how some people on this board feel as if guys like me and Chris are Walmarts? As I said in the other thread, this Fett armor is not pre-painted, pre-packaged, and has a UPC slapped on it ready to ship upon the click of your paypal payment.

    I don't own a sweat-shop, I don't have employees, and I certainly don't have the means to dedicate every waking second to paint molded fiberglass and resin. Almost all of my previous and current customers understand this...except for a select few.

    We've had characters getting banned on this forum because their harassment has been so extreme over impatience and the need to soil reputations, be it personal vendettas or just plain spite. This is not the community that I remembered joining as an 18 year old, doughy-eyed at all of the amazing work that was posted on these forums. The amount of drama and unrelenting impatience is driving the fun out of this hobby, and I KNOW I'm not alone on this.

    For my previous customers...thank you for your patience, and it's truly awesome to see you guys rocking my work to conventions! To my current customers, thank you for baring with me during these times, and I really hope you all enjoy the quality of work.
  2. terryfett's Avatar
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    Oct 2011
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    Dec 16, 2012, 12:13 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #2

    Wish I could afford you!
  3. animefan's Avatar
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    Dec 16, 2012, 2:20 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #3

    Well said
  4. BobaFiend's Avatar
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    Nov 2009
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    787
    Dec 16, 2012, 2:22 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #4

    Quote Ponte said: View Post
    As I said in the other thread, this Fett armor is not pre-painted, pre-packaged, and has a UPC slapped on it ready to ship upon the click of your paypal payment.

    I don't own a sweat-shop, I don't have employees, and I certainly don't have the means to dedicate every waking second to paint molded fiberglass and resin.
    This seems strange to me as well. I don't know you from Adam, Ponte but I do know that many users expect Fett to be as commoditized as anything else these days. For the most part if you have the money, anything and everything is purchasable on the internet but some things are so rare that they cannot be so easily acquired. It seems to be becoming a problem that people don't understand that there is a gap there.
  5. Jayvee's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 2010
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    657
    Dec 16, 2012, 7:38 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #5

    Quote Ponte said: View Post
    I have noticed a trend on this forum that is leaving me puzzled, main example being with the impatience for the deliverance of goods from Fettpride. I can't fathom how some people on this board feel as if guys like me and Chris are Walmarts? As I said in the other thread, this Fett armor is not pre-painted, pre-packaged, and has a UPC slapped on it ready to ship upon the click of your paypal payment.

    I don't own a sweat-shop, I don't have employees, and I certainly don't have the means to dedicate every waking second to paint molded fiberglass and resin. Almost all of my previous and current customers understand this...except for a select few.
    Rick, iv'e only had limited contact with you in the past, but that contact has been just fine, and you seem like a really good guy. But in this particular case, I have to politely disagree with you. I doubt anyone thinks these are a wall-mart production line, but to call out 'unrelenting impatience' in this case is a bit rough. There was a 5 month time frame given, and it took 3 times that to be half completed. I would think any nomal person would be more than in thier rights to question this. This could have been helped by good communication - that didnt seem sound either. I'm sure you have had many happy customers - but this customer was not happy, and by the evidence produced from both parties, seemed within his rights..

    While I understand these items take time, the vendors also have to understand that they are dealing with peoples hard earned money. I actually think people spending good money have actually shown excellent patience. If you have so much trouble meeting a rough time frame, you should either not take as much on to begin with, or give a more accurate time frame, taking all into account. I am as pedantic as anything with my paint ups, and know they do not take 15 months to do half the job, even with a mental busy year. Same with Chris - I love the work he does for the community, but how he wouldn't know the GMH'S were going to go gangbusters is beyond me. Knowing this, why not start with smaller runs, and offer more once they were completed, and once you had a feel of how long each run would take. Would've made more sense and avoided some heartache. But the bottom line, and the thing most would be happy with - is simple communication. Yeah, the vendors might get frustrated at times, but how do you honestly think the client feels, waiting 3 times the time frame for thier product, only for it to be unfinished, and made numerous attempts for contact, which went unanswered? C'mon man. I honestly think you do awesome work, and have had many happy customers, but this one seemed handled poorly. This thread does seem like damage control, and probably wouldnt exist if you didn't feel a teeny bit of guilt or embarrasment. That would be understandable for someone with such a high standard for thier work, and I respect that. But I also dont really go for the point of the vendors being victims all the time either - once the people have paid, the vendors themselves have reasonable responsibilities - if not met, the client will very likely, and deservedly ask the question, to which communication is the key - surely everyone can understand this.

    In summary, I am done commenting on this - I really like you and your work, and I am not out for a witch hunt. I am simply a casual observer, trying to put myself in the shoes of both parties. I hope you continue to produce outstanding work, and wish you all the very best, and hope we can still discuss fine details when they come up.

    Sincerely,
    Jonny
  6. Member Since
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    190
    Dec 16, 2012, 10:09 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #6

    The only way that you can clear the "Smear Campaign" is if you can prove it to be false, so if you did an excellent job with good communication and customer service.
    If you are missing any of the above then instead of clearing your name you need to work on re-building your reputation, which again can be done by turning out an excellent product with good communication and customer service.
    In my limited time on the board I have seen some of the biggest and the best damage their reputations, some are no longer on the boards and some have started to build their reputations up again.
    Which you decide to do is up to you, not us.
  7. formerly Woodman woodman's Avatar
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    Dec 16, 2012, 6:01 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #7

  8. Jc27's Avatar
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    Dec 16, 2012, 6:52 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #8

    Wood, that's hilarious.
  9. Member Since
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    30
    Dec 17, 2012, 10:09 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #9

    I'm new here but don't people understand that the people making/doing this work have other jobs, families, hardships another resposibilities? Find someone else if you want it yesterday! I'm sorry, but I find it rude to think that people that are trying to provide a service to this group are being ragged on. I'm working on my own Boba. It consumes much time. Just my own costume. Think of these people who do it for multiple people that expect perfection. Give them a break! Can you, or will you do the same thing? Walk in thier shoes first. Shame on you. Like I said, I'm new here and hope I'm not out of line with my opinions.
  10. rubio95's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2009
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    315
    Dec 17, 2012, 10:48 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #10

    Quote Fetterling said: View Post
    I'm new here but don't people understand that the people making/doing this work have other jobs, families, hardships another resposibilities? Find someone else if you want it yesterday! I'm sorry, but I find it rude to think that people that are trying to provide a service to this group are being ragged on. I'm working on my own Boba. It consumes much time. Just my own costume. Think of these people who do it for multiple people that expect perfection. Give them a break! Can you, or will you do the same thing? Walk in thier shoes first. Shame on you. Like I said, I'm new here and hope I'm not out of line with my opinions.
    You are out of line with this opinion, and it's very obvious that you didn't read the thread that this is in reference to.

    Read first, then formulate an opinion.
  11. mandosoldier's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2007
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    755
    Dec 17, 2012, 10:52 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #11

    being new here you may want to read the other thread leading to this before getting on your high horse on a topic you don't know anything about. Did you know that this guy

    1. agreed to a 5 month turnaround time
    2. Had helmet for 15 months and STILL had barely touched it.
    3. promised full refund and (upon request) return of helmet in unfinished state
    4. lied about having sent the helmet, taking 3 months to get it back
    5. Still has not given refund
    6. Has been impossible to get hold of
    7. Has attempted to shift all blame on to the buyer

    Does this sound like someone YOU would buy your costume parts from?

    Original thread here...

    http://www.thedentedhelmet.com/f22/b...e-ponte-46022/
  12. Gilmortar's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    1,753
    Dec 17, 2012, 11:09 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #12

    You know...i've known Rick along time here...and I myself fell into some very hard times and had ALOT of trouble shipping items out to people due to finance woes. And like Rick, people are dragging my name through the dirt, people NOT INVOLVED in any transactions.

    THAT is the growing trend here. This has become a community of pitch fork holders and noose bearers ready in the wings to call out anyone.

    over 10 years I've been part of this community, part of this board. And I've seen REAL crooks come and go. People who joined with the sole intention of ripping thousands of dollars off from people. I've seen good members go out in a blaze of glory, and some forced out.

    But recently, it's been everyone jumping in with their 2 cents.

    NONE of you know the reasons behind it. I waited 2 years for a helmet to be painted a few years ago from a then HIGH STANDING member here. I needed it 6 months after I gave it to him...but I waited...and I waited...and after 2 years, I asked for the helmet back. I had to drive the 3 1/2 hours to go GET the helmet because he was unable to even ship it to me. And guess what....

    I AM STILL FRIENDS WITH THAT MEMBER TO THIS DAY!!!

    I've also waited over a year and a half to get pieces i bought 2nd hand from a person. He disappeared. POOF. Come to find out, the guy was known for just disappearing sometimes...I took the owner of this board at his word that he would come through. Sure enough...a year and half later, he reappeared as well as my items I bought from him.

    Things happen in people's lives. God knows alot of BS has happened in my life the last 9 months...The moment I got home from Afghanistan in March, it's been one bad luck event after another for me. I moved to take a good job, that I then lost, dealt with health and emotional issues for me and my significant, to include financial struggles, then had my paypal hacked, had my debit cards stolen, and then to top it all off, my leasing agency stole almost 3 grand from me, and evicted me from the home on fraudulent accounts. So now I moved back to Oklahoma (an emergency 2 day notice move at that) so I would be able to file a countersuit against them with my JAG office.

    So sit here, and tell me that people don't have to deal with things in life. Let the 2 people here involved deal with this themselves. Just like people here knew they could get ahold of me when people were concerned, they did! People got ahold of Rick to find out what it is. Sometimes people have to take a step back from the internet, get caught up with life, and then get back to people. And as well, sometimes, people drop off the boards due to knowing they don't want to be seen logged in and dodge responsibility. BUT for the veterans around here, we know the other veterans. We know each other well.

    so seriously STOP BEATING A DEAD HORSE. LET THE PARTIES INVOLVED HANDLE IT NOW. IF YOU HAVE NO MONETARY OR PHYSICAL OBLIGATION TO THIS THREAD, LEAVE IT ALONE

    These witch hunts are getting out of hand...I hate where this board is heading with this kind of mentality...it sickens me to know the community I've been apart of for over 10 years is becoming the epitome of something I loathe...
  13. rubio95's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
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    315
    Dec 17, 2012, 12:00 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #13

    Quote Gilmore of OK said: View Post
    You know...i've known Rick along time here...and I myself fell into some very hard times and had ALOT of trouble shipping items out to people due to finance woes. And like Rick, people are dragging my name through the dirt, people NOT INVOLVED in any transactions.
    I'm very curious about the part that I have marked in bold. What about your financial woes stopped you from keeping your word? People pay for their own shipping to/from when they make deals, right? Did you spend other people's money before meeting your obligation? If I read that right, it doesn't sound very responsible on your part.

    THAT is the real problem here. Not the so-called 'beating a dead horse'.

    I had planned a much longer response, but decided against it. My mindset is 'Be a responsible, accountable individual and stand by your word.'

    Instead of starting a new thread pleading innocence, poverty, natural disasters, act of God, etc, Ponte should simply have apologized and left it alone. Not start a new thread about how this is a witch hunt, mudslinging, etc, feeling like the world is out to get him and how it's so unfair. This is not about him or you or anyone else. I've been speaking about the PRINCIPLES involved.

    Speaking of which, I'll leave this alone now. I am not attacking anyone here, including Ponte or you, Gilmore.

    Considering some of the things that I've read/heard about on other prop boards, we don't have it bad here. It's good to have a vigorous debate/discussion BEFORE an epidemic.
  14. mandosoldier's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2007
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    755
    Dec 17, 2012, 1:20 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #14

    What getting scared we're gonna scare away suckers to pay your bills? Sorry, if you take people's cash, disappear for months to a year with no communication it is indeed you that are the bad guy, and a torch wielding we shall go. And stop dishonoring your service by using it as an excuse. I too served, and sold stuff while deployed, and kept in touch until they got their items. Saying "I'm a soldier" simply doesn't float anymore when everywhere you go there's email even in Afghanistan and Iraq. I'm sorry you've fallen on hard times, but what? you couldn't spare 5 mins to shoot someone an email or answer one? You say you sent people items back in October? well how about answering a message months later when they still have not gotten them? You claim to still have their tracking #'s, then you could have figured out yourself that they didn't get it. We're not wrong for calling you out, regardless if we've bought from you or not. If you and yours keep taking people's cash but being hard to communicate with, and continue to not get people their items we're going to keep your name going around and make sure future prospects know your rep before they too get suckered. Don't like your rep as a thief? stop being one. It's not us that's ruining this place it's you and yours that has made trying to assemble a Fett a very risky prospect on a board that's supposed to be the best place to assemble a Fett. None of us mind a wait, some will even let go a wait of a year or 2 as long as communication is kept, is your case as well as Ponte's you didn't. You THEN returned and blamed everyone but yourselves for your predicament. grow up, take the consequences of being poor vendors, don't repeat mistakes and get a better rep.
  15. dsonik1's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 2009
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    1,492
    Dec 17, 2012, 2:56 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #15

    I find it hilarious seeing people who raked me across the coals over shirts, while my family and I lost everything, have been getting a taste of what it feels like. Even more humorous watching the ones who have been shtupping people for years, still getting the old free pass simply because of politics. I lost friends, was kicked off the boards by a coward (further hindering me from contacting people that were owed), which ART himself didnt even know about, until I was finally able to contact him about (which he then fixed and reinstated me). But in that time, I've still been able to observe. Funny, cause almost 2 years later, and I STILL dont have things that I ordered. Unfortunately, it's the risk we take.

    This in NO WAY justifies my, or anyone else's, shortcomings as vendors... but this is a MUTUAL situation.

    On one hand, you have vendors acting irresponsibly, which puts me in line with mandosoldier...

    on the other, I agree with Gilmore. There is a bit of a witchhunt going.

    Sometimes vendors are just shady, in other cases, things happen... Bad, life altering things.

    And sometimes, other vendors stir things up in hopes that the other vendor will be run out of town... so they can profit from it with a subpar product because they are too stupid to read a tutorial the former vendor wrote, detailing the proper way to do things. Or, they read it it, and realized with no other vendor to produce the product, they can make more money by using cheaper materials and still charge the same amount of money, or more.

    These vendors are easy to spot, since they flip flop allegiances depending on whether or not its a good business move, rather than whats honorable and true. Especially f'd up when the vendor that they attack helped them build their reputation in the community.

    In the end. Being a vendor here, or a consumer, are both tricky. Rick, you're way out of line in this. You F'd up, just apologize and move forward. Your work is impeccable, people know that, you just tripped and stumbled... it has happened to even the most esteemed of vendors here.

    Hell, I STILL owe Damo a girth belt, which he has been probably the most kind and understanding person I have ever met. He reads my fb, and knows that I'm still struggling to regain my life. I WILL get him sussed. And hopefully, that counts for something.

    I learned a valuable lesson through all of this, though. NEVER take on more than you're **** sure you can handle, Never accept full payment on something you dont have ready to ship out, ALWAYS take into account that life happens... regardless of your schedule.

    FLAME AWAY. :P
    Last edited by dsonik1; Dec 17, 2012 at 4:16 PM.
  16. rubio95's Avatar
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    Jun 2009
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    Dec 17, 2012, 4:34 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #16

    Quote dsonik1 said: View Post
    NEVER take on more than you're **** sure you can handle, Never accept full payment on something you dont have ready to ship out, ALWAYS take into account that life happens... regardless of your schedule.

    FLAME AWAY. :P
    No flaming. The last sentence sums it up perfectly.
  17. Lichtbringer's Avatar
    Member Since
    Feb 2011
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    92
    Dec 17, 2012, 5:38 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #17

    There would be no "witchhunt" (i donīt see it as one) if people would act responsible after taking someones money.

    Everything changes after you took money for your work.

    If you do work for free for a friend, he had to accept any waiting - if he thinks it takes to long he could get his stuff back, but other than that he has to wait until you managed your life, and did any commissions from paying customers.

    With taking money you change the game - then you have to act responsible as a company. Meet your timelines, do what you promised, keep care of your life in your free time - if you are unable to handle things the right way, donīt mess it up on the back of your customer.

    DON`T TAKE MONEY IN ADVANCE - and spend it due to your own personal problems before the order is done. If you do such, you are far away from a professional handling of business (and it IS business when taking money). After taking money your no longer in a position to work only when you are "in the right mood", meet the promised timeline.


    From time to time i do commissions myself, not to upgrade my income, but cause i like doing stuff with my machines. And i have 2 general ways i handle them.

    A buildup with bought parts mostly delivered by the customer - then i only take money when ready, or if it takes him a long time to provide everything (esspecially when working on a blaster with mainly real parts) i take part payment AFTER i showed him pics of the stuff i did already when waiting for him to send the still missing parts. And at every moment the customer is free to get his stuff back, cause he changed his mind, run out of money, or wasnīt able to find the final parts. As soon as he decides to want it back he gets a shipping quote additional to the price for the altready done work, and after payment it will be send back within a week (sometimes life takes care that you canīt go to the post office the next day, but within a week should be doable for everyone).

    Another thing is doing machined parts for someone - after i was asked to do it, we determine what should be done, and if we both agree on a price and a timeframe (usually "iīm ready when iīm ready, but i assume it to take xxx weeks) i start working on it. If it is nothing completely unusual or extremly expensive, so if itīs the usual alu (for example), i use existing stock or buy it and manufacture the part/parts. Then i show him pics as a proof of the ready parts and ask for the payment, NOT sooner. And after payment i ship it. If i donīt get it done due to not having my life in straight line, no customer can be harmed that way. But additional iīm safe not to harm anyone if life gets troublesome.


    And from buyers side (thatīs just my private opinion) i donīt like doing business with people who accept a lot of orders and money to get additional income immediatly, and then starting to keep all the builds in line. Donīt accept more than you can chew! You want my money? Have it ready for shipping when you ask for my money, or at least be sure to have it done within paypals timeframe - otherwise donīt be upset when i start a pp claim before time runs out.
  18. Hydra's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 2006
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    158
    Dec 17, 2012, 8:34 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #18

    Quote mandosoldier said: View Post
    And stop dishonoring your service by using it as an excuse. I too served, and sold stuff while deployed, and kept in touch until they got their items. Saying "I'm a soldier" simply doesn't float anymore when everywhere you go there's email even in Afghanistan and Iraq. I'm sorry you've fallen on hard times, but what? you couldn't spare 5 mins to shoot someone an email or answer one? You say you sent people items back in October? well how about answering a message months later when they still have not gotten them? You claim to still have their tracking #'s, then you could have figured out yourself that they didn't get it. We're not wrong for calling you out, regardless if we've bought from you or not. If you and yours keep taking people's cash but being hard to communicate with, and continue to not get people their items we're going to keep your name going around and make sure future prospects know your rep before they too get suckered. Don't like your rep as a thief? stop being one.
    You are being a troll. No matter the information put before you or the opportunity to obtain the correct information, no matter whether or not you acknowledge fact or fiction you will be a nay-sayer, a s*** slinger. Do you know either of these people personally? Do you know what their last year has been like, do you feel like you can speak for them? Make assumptions? Oh. Forget their years, and years of positive forum presence.

    People like you kill my enthusiasm to post and participate in communities like this.

    Being Gilmore's SO, I'm about as red in the face as I can be. He has been through hell, we both have. We sold his amounting fett stuff to pay for future bills when MY health problems popped out of no where. But screw real world problems man, sorry our priorities were focused elsewhere when I was bouncing in and out of the hospital. Do you think those "excuses" would have cured sour spirits? Because I'm sure paypal disputes would have still been filed with this kind of attitude being prevalent.

    Additionally, for the record, since I'm finding your attitude particularly troubling, not only was he gone from home for 14 months, he served as Sgt of the Guard for his remote FOB working 12-24 hr shifts 7 days a week. His job was incredibly emotionally and physically taxing, I don't want you sitting here as a prior service member speaking for his experiences, really? He did not have time overseas because his job was taking charge of an entire FOBs activities daily, his job was keeping people safe. I'd think that a former solider would understand.

    We still haven't gotten back on our feet completely and I'm unsure if I'm eager to post my finished Bo Katan on TDH anymore, OR offer runs of the armor. Who knows if I'd be smeared for taking an extra week on a paint job?

    Edit: I realize I'm coming across well, rather cross. But I you know, I always loved this community. And the way that I have seen these two outstanding members being treated really gets my goat. Community means friendship, friendship means some menial level of empathy and forgiveness... Not shaming and flaming. We are all human and regardless of what happened transactions were completed, paypal pacified. Get the hell over it, they sure as hell aren't Reinone(s), if any one remembers that pile of filth.
    Lol usually not this steamed up, sorry all.
    Last edited by Hydra; Dec 17, 2012 at 8:42 PM.
  19. Jc27's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2012
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    1,850
    Dec 17, 2012, 9:13 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #19

    Hopefully now that everyone has made their point, Art will close this thread before it gets even more personal.
    Everyone should just press on and focus on the more positive aspects of life. This is a hobby and everyone should remember that.
  20. mandosoldier's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
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    755
    Dec 17, 2012, 9:33 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #20

    edited. My stance has been made and will leave it at that.
  21. Hydra's Avatar
    Member Since
    Mar 2006
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    158
    Dec 17, 2012, 9:39 PM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #21

    The only reason I chose to comment on this thread is because I love this hobby and I'm sick of all the hot air. I agree with a moderator closing these topics.
  22. Dec 18, 2012, 3:43 AM - Re: Clearing the Smear Campaign #22

    The issue has been discussed and no more is needed to be said.

    This thread is locked.

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