Please Use Caution With The Workshop Mike Rosa

Lunchbox

New Hunter
TL;DR: Please use extreme caution if you are looking to buy costumes/parts from The Workshop (Aka. Mike.) After being told my order was shipped when I paid in full $5,045, I received nothing for two months with no real validation something was sent to me. This is my experience with purchasing a full Boba Fett costume from this seller. It is also a bit of a read, so my apologies in advanced for the long story.

Hello all, I'm a long time observer of the Dented Helmet forums and now first time user of the forum. I realize there is already someone out there whose made a name for themselves (Lunchboxwars I think), I didn't notice until after the fact and don't mean to impose. A few months ago I decided to take on the endeavor of getting a commissioned Boba Fett costume. For the longest time I've just observed and browsed around, reading up on vendors as best as I could, and decide who I could buy from. All the while I've just observed, and never thought to be involved in the community myself. If ANY of this sounds familiar to you, for someone who wants to start getting into a Boba Fett costume, this is for you. Here is a rough breakdown of what happened:

I payed the amount of $5,192.30 in total for a complete screen accurate Boba Fett Special Edition costume. The agreement was his used costume for that price. I was under the agreement with the seller that I would cover the seller fees charged to the him under Goods and Services. The total amount charged to the seller was $147.30. I completed the payment in the beginning of March and he did not ship the items until the beginning of April. He said he needed to make preparations for the items and needed a little bit of time, but the assurance I was given was that majority of the costume is ready -- which was the whole reason for me making my purchase as it was completed, if not nearly completed already and he could ship it soon. So the rough ETA was to be the beginning of April. I found the Workshop through Facebook, and all my contact was done through Facebook messaging.

On April 7th he attached two tracking numbers to the transactions posted on PayPal and claimed that he had sent the packages through USPS Priority Mail. However, both tracking numbers showed pre-shipment for a number of days before I confronted him about it. Upon checking the tracking numbers in the following days and discovering them unchanged from "Pre-Shipment" status, I contacted the seller to verify that everything was shipped; The seller had reassured me that everything was properly shipped and remarked that sometimes "these things happen" and USPS takes a while to show updates on shipment tracking but also brought up that USPS could have missed a scan. (For two packages.)

It is also worth noting that the tracking numbers on the USPS site do not list my address on them anywhere. I asked him to provide pictures of the receipts from the post office, tracking numbers on them, and pictures of the packages. I asked him three times and he had never given me a straight answer nor has he provided pictures of them for me -- as a proof of him shipping the packages. I had asked him on April 4th, April 21st (he said he would send them to me the following day), and April 28th. But by the 29th he then stated he discarded the receipts and can no longer find the USPS tracking numbers on his "site."

On April 22nd, the seller notified me of a shipping error which resulted in the packages being returned to the seller, due to some kind of mix-up at a USPS location in New York -- yet re-checking the tracking numbers did not show any relevant information.

My attempts to try and resolve this matter have led to the last message with the seller over the weekend of April 28th and 29th, where I shared my concerns involving the shipment of my order, inquiring for answers. Unexpectedly, the response given to me from the seller, was one of a dismissive nature, down-playing the referenced incident of the packages being sent back from New York, a week prior. He also stated that he threw away the receipts and has lost the tracking numbers through the USPS site and cannot find them anymore. He did not given me any form of confirmation that these packages have been shipped, or any confirmation of contact he has had with USPS. I filed claims against the Workshop on May 4th -- and did not conclude until May 18th.

Unfortunately, the seller had been my only source of getting any updates on the shipment(s), as neither USPS tracking numbers have any updated information to indicate the shipments ever existing, nor returning to the seller. Additionally, I had no way to validate whether the returning shipments were received by the seller, were being sent back to the seller from said places, or verify he actually had contact with USPS.

Ultimately, I filed claims on PayPal against Workshop after four business days of receiving no response when I raised all of my concerns regarding the entire situation. In the end I received all of my money back through the claims I made with PayPal. I didn't receive my last $2,000 until a few days ago from my CC company as they had to write me a check for that amount and then mail it to me. At the very end (during the claims process) tells me there had been a serious issue, health related, which had been the cause of the miscommunication with my whole ordeal and apologized for the outcome.

I completely understand that stuff happens, I get it. However this ordeal left me feeling seriously anxious and could not help but think I was getting a runaround, while making me question if this costume actually existed or was even packaged. I understand that people have had positive experiences with this seller, while others have had very bad ones. Whatever the case may be, thank you for your time.

I can get into detail about anything else and I have screenshots as well of our communication, all done through Facebook messaging -- if anyone has questions.
 

Chris4321

Active Hunter
I am glad you were able to get a full refund. I had similar troubles when I first started (different user) and ended up getting a full refund via Paypal. It's pretty sad you were getting the run around as he seems to be pretty active on social media.

If you are looking for a full costume, commission Daz (Bobamaker) but you will wait I am sure at least a 1 to 2 years...not sure what he's up to now or what I did is slowly start piecing it all together. Honestly, even that route will take about a year unless you can get lucky in the Cargo Hold.
 

clmayfield

Active Hunter
I will say this... I have never had a single issue purchasing from sellers I found on the TDH. I know some people have had issues with some sellers on here. I would highly recommend limiting exposure by doing commissions piecemeal. There are a lot of pieces to this costume. Helmet, soft parts, boots, jet pack, armor, gauntlets, EE-3, Pulce, holster, etc. can all be broken up. Yeah, you might pay a little more in shipping. But it is worth it to know that the most you will be out is $300 - $500. I did a full JP once for $750 and a brass cast of a Webley for a little over $1k, but that's the most I have spent at one time.

I can't imagine parting with $5k and hoping for the best. That is too much to put out there. And for vendors living hand to mouth, that just invites the opportunity to live off of the next full commission. You are creating an opportunity for someone to dig themselves in a hole they don't want to find themselves in. In fact, I believe that a lot of the people who have turned into crooks on here started out with good intentions and found themselves broke and without motivation.

Another purely selfish reason to do these things piecemeal is the joy of unboxing a new toy. You can unbox one big toy. Or you can unbox a ton of little toys throughout the year. I personally enjoy unboxing all of the individual parts. I end up having a lot more appreciation of all of the little parts when I do it that way. But that's just me.
 

Funkyred

Active Hunter
Preferred Vendor
Wow ! That's seriously uncool. Glad you got your money back in the end.

Did you receive any pictures during the build ?
 

Jc27

Well-Known Hunter
Preferred Vendor
This is why Mike was banned here as well as a few other prop forums. I don't know of anyone that has had a good experience dealing with Mike, so best bet is to just look through the threads here and get your parts from members like DVH, Wasted Fett, Fettseven, Animefan, Arkady, and others with a good reputation. If you aren't sure, just ask, we will let you know.
 

Slash

Hunter
I had the misfortune of commissioning some work from him. Ultimately I got him to refund my money and send my commission work on elsewhere, which fortunately he did. Although it chewed up a few months of my build time and cost me additional postage. But there was some really shady things happening and I wouldn’t trust him at all.
 

Evan1701

Hunter
As far as I know this guy has been blacklisted 501st-wide. It's so important to do your research before spending a dime. Full commissions are close to impossible to find, not just for this particular costume, but in this hobby. Your best bet is to do everything you possibly can yourself. I personally don't trust anyone I don't know personally to not give me the shaft. If you're hell bent on getting everything commissioned, start talking to folks on here. Most of them are great.
 

hvacdon

Active Hunter
Glad to hear you got your cash back in hand. Before I researched the site and learned better, I bought a good bit items from Evolution Props in Argentina. I had to do the same as you
and get Paypal to refund the money. I believe he was stalling in hopes that the Paypal time limit to make a claim would run out......What a Guy !!
I'm sure anyone here would be glad to make recommendations on who to check with for just about any and all pieces you need to build your Fett !!
 

Lunchbox

New Hunter
Jumping in trying to buy everything lock stock & barrel, on my part, probably wasn't the wisest decision -- even if it seems the most convenient. I'll look more to getting things piece by piece; thank you for the tips. (I've been reminded on how many numerous and complex parts this costume has.)

I did receive pictures of the build, but they were of the pieces already assembled or him wearing the whole costume to see what it looks like. The only picture I got of items being laid out were the gloves, cape, girth belt, neck seal, codpiece and spats laid out in one photo. Then a picture of the flightsuit. The armor and helmet photo's I couldn't tell if they were being laid out or if they were pictures taken from the past. The armor was already assembled onto a flak jacket and the picture I got of the whole costume was the same ones of him wearing them on his Facebook. But any pictures of them being packaged or getting the costume prepared for shipment were not sent.

It's my fault for not looking into this deep enough or asking the community beforehand. It wasn't until after the fact that I realized what I had possibly gotten myself into around March.
 

clmayfield

Active Hunter
I'm not faulting you at all. A dozen people told me not to use eBay. What did I do when I was starting out? I bought a whole bunch of things from a reputable vendor -of lightsabers- on eBay. He sent me the stuff, but it was not accurate. I did not know any better. The few things I was able to keep, I repainted... which took more time than just starting with accurate pieces. I think everyone gets enthusiastic when they start and want to do things faster and cheaper. I know I did. You didn't even go cheap. I think $5k is a pretty fair price.
 

bobawomble

Jr Hunter
Yeah, issues with this guy are fairly common. Sorry to hear you went through it but I’m glad you got your money back!
yep having read in other posts that somebody claimed your paint up on a helmet as his and then claimed a crock of s--t excuse to make money out of somebody ! is this the same fella ?
 
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toofastrobot

Active Hunter
yep having read in other posts that somebody claimed your paint up on a helmet as his and then clamed a crock s--t excuse to make money out of somebody ! is this the same fella ?
Yes sir! I wasn’t the first person and unfortunately looks like I’m not the last to have a run in with him... real piece of work that guy
 

bobawomble

Jr Hunter
Yes sir! I wasn’t the first person and unfortunately looks like I’m not the last to have a run in with him... real piece of work that guy
What goes around, comes around! he will pay for it at some point o_O
ps nice work on your esb build and I hope your on the mend ? and no hard feelings on any of my last posts with you as I type after work so drunk in charge of keyboard I'm sorry pal
 
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Jc27

Well-Known Hunter
Preferred Vendor
You would think that people would know about him now, but if you look at his FB page, people are like "your work is awesome, can you do a commission for me". He also took one of wasted fett's photos from his instagram account, him out, and is saying he painted the armor and will be making Jango armor soon.
 
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