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'Short stack' accusation lands seller in court

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by tonelover, Dec 8, 2010.

  1. tonelover

    tonelover Member

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    A link to an article in our local paper about a guy selling someone 2.5 cords of wood and calling it 7!

    Article

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  2. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Thats just a little off.....Wow
  3. shawneyboy

    shawneyboy Minister of Fire

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    OK I can tell you this much, if she indeed had any idea what a cord was, she would have known that what she got was NOT 7 cords. 2.5 cords is no where near 7 !!!! Wowser, it is interesting looking at some of the coments, I do have to wonder with the prices stated, if he meant, maybe even said it was "face cords". Not that it excuses anything, if he is a seller of wood he needs to use the state measurement of a cord.
  4. Backwoods Savage

    Backwoods Savage Minister of Fire

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    Methinks we need more of this.
  5. schortie

    schortie Member

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    Crooked? yes. Felony?...I'm not so sure. But then again, I don't know all the facts of the case.
  6. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    2.56 cord would be a heavy 7 cord load here. However, people don't pay $150 for a face cord.
  7. NH_Wood

    NH_Wood Minister of Fire

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    That's brutal. But, I must say, I love when I read about number of cords broken down to 2 decimal places. 2.56 cord, eh? Could have been 2.55, perhaps 2.57, hmmmm......Cheers!
  8. Bigg_Redd

    Bigg_Redd Minister of Fire

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    It's fraud. I don't know what the NH threshold is between misdemeanor and a felony but here in WA frauding someone for over $500 will land you prison time.
  9. Kenster

    Kenster Minister of Fire

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    Read the whole article and the comments. Apparently, the lady made the complaint almost three months after the delivery. She claimed she was suppose to get seven cords for $1010.00. That's $144 a cord, which seems very cheap. 2.5 cords at $1010 would be just a little under $400 a cord. Which is on the high side. Regardless, the seller offered to make it good with more wood or a refund but the buyer refused. I think there is more to this story.
  10. mayhem

    mayhem Minister of Fire

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    This is what happens when people start calling face cords, cords and think its ok. I think the guy sold 7 face cords and either told her 7 cords or she heard cords when he saif face cords. If a face cord is considered to typically be 1/3 of a cord, then 2.56 cords would be a bit over 7 face cords...he probably thought he was being generous.

    I posted a comment on that site explaning my thoghts.
  11. Danno77

    Danno77 Minister of Fire

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    I've got a Cadillac I'd like to sell you. What? You guys call these things "Yugos?" Weird, we've always called them Cadillacs. Well, I know I agreed to bring you a Cadillac, but just because I don't know what I'm talking about, I'll take your money and give you a Yugo.

    I don't care what the guy THINKS he was selling. He SAID "Cord." There is only ONE definition of Cord that matters (128cuft). It's a darn shame when the uneducated get taken advantage of, but if you don't know an oil filter from an air filter, you don't work on cars. If you don't know depression from tourrettes then you don't become a psychologist, if you don't know a nail from a screw you don't become a carpenter. If you don't know the difference between a face cord and a cord, then you don't sell firewood. period.
  12. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    I believe this is why some states (such as MA) do not recognize the term "cord" for advertising or selling wood. The only legal unit of measure for selling firewood is the number of cubic feet. Of course reality is that you rarely see anyone actually advertise selling for $x per 128cuft, but that is what the legal way to sell is. IF there were greater enforcement then it may reduce such confusion, however I suspect the requirements are more likely used to weed out cases like this from the court system - i.e. if you try to press the weights and measures dept for a sale they will likely ask you to show the (required) receipt showing how many cuft were sold as a starting point...
  13. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    . . . or only allow folks to sell wood in cords . . . and define those cords in plain and simple language . . . i.e. 4 x 4 x 8 feet or 128 cubic feet.
  14. mayhem

    mayhem Minister of Fire

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    Don't get me wrong, I'm not defending the seller, simply illustrating how this might have gone wrong.

    Since neither of us was there when the sales conversation took place, we don't know that.

    Lots of people unfortunately refer to face cords as cords...many people right here on hearth.com do it and it always frustrates me.
  15. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    not much story there - at least about what happened to instigate the story.

    course no one's gonna do nor be allowed to do much talking until after a jury trial is over anyway usually, so it's just he said she said fodder until we are actually privy to what he and she actually said and maybe even did.


    Makes for some fun arguing online, though.

    anyone wanna take this outside ?

    :)
  16. wood-fan-atic

    wood-fan-atic New Member

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    Let's just assume ( and I dont think it happened this way) that the seller DID say 7 FACE cords for $1010. Thats $145 PER face cord!! That is $435 PER CORD!!! And on top of that , figure in that shes buying a large quantity (i.e. multiple 'face cords') - I would say that shes an eskimo being sold a snowball. Who would agree to buy 2.5 cords of wood for $1000?! NoBody!! Thats who!! My guess is that the seller figured he would burn an old lady with the old cord/face cord confusion routine, and he got caught. Or, he just shorted her. Either way---->Shame on him.
  17. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

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    You get what you pay for when it comes to cordwood. The time to argue over the size of the pile is when the truck shows up, and not when the truck leaves. That being said, he must have known what's up, and just hoped he wouldn't get caught. Koodos to her for standing up to it, but I think its a little sour grapes to drag the legal system into it. Craigslist is about people helping people. Pretty soon you'll need a license to buy/sell things, or even barter so the government can get their sales tax!
  18. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    Thats right, and not only does the law require selling by cu ft, but it also requires sellers to give written receipt. you can challenge on either count.


    You would be surprised but they actually do take it seriously. I got massively shorted last summer and reported it, and within 2 weeks the weights and measures guy came to my house and measured the stack. He told me they do take these calls serious and will take scammers to court because firewood is a heating fuel and they are concerned about low income folk being taken advantage of.
  19. rnlincourt

    rnlincourt Member

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    I guess the lesson is Buyer Beware...!?
  20. Slow1

    Slow1 Minister of Fire

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    I am not sure that the limited known facts of this case fully support that conclusion, even if it is a valid point.

    However based on what is known here there are some points to be taken if you are buying wood.

    1) Communicate with your seller so you know what you are buying and how much you are paying.
    2) When delivery is made, get a receipt that details exactly what was delivered and how much (in terms legal to the state/area you live in - in MA that would mean # cuft delivered).
    3) Stack and measure as soon as possible after delivery to verify quantity.
    4) IF there is a discrepancy contact seller immediately and try to work it out (documenting everything). Don't wait 3 months (?) as is alleged by some in this story.
    5) If all else fails, take it up with your dept of weights and measures / legal system for assistance. Don't just 'give up' as if a wrong has been done it is worth correcting to help the market for all buyers and sellers.

    Or more simply - an informed and empowered consumer is good for everyone in the market over the long run.
  21. Dakotas Dad

    Dakotas Dad Minister of Fire

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    Here, a split, unseasoned, u-pick up face cord of hardwood is $40. all day long. so $120 for a cord. My neighbor just bought 18 "face cords" delivered. It was $875. It was a true 6 cords, actually a bit better, it was almost all cut 18", nothing shorter. We had pre-built 9 racks, 16' long next to her barn/shed. And we were able to stack it that day. Everyone of them is more than 4' tall.

    the price of firewood does vary greatly. My take on it is the if grand jury indicted.. there is at least probable cause to investigate and/or prosecute.. but an indictment is not a guilty verdict.

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