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WARNING: Darrin Huff Basses / Zeller Guitars

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Fuzzbass, Jun 16, 2006.


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  1. Robus

    Robus

    Aug 25, 2013
    Chicago Area
    His method has been on display for 20 years.
     
    ajkula66, Ukko and oddentity like this.
  2. Sam Dingle

    Sam Dingle Supporting Member

    Aug 16, 2011
    Tallahassee
    im always surprised that this thread is still open but at the same time not. I really hope he hasn't gained any $$ in at lease 8 years but based on the zeller guitars thing I assume he has.
     
  3. eude

    eude

    Apr 13, 2006
    London
    I honestly think he's struggled to make or at least keep the money with those too.
    I think in his heart of hearts, he would still like to build all the instruments he owes, given the obvious issues the guy is going through, I expect the guilt of it will get to him, very badly at least some of the time.
    If he had made money, and was doing well, I don't doubt he'd be doing his best to build all your basses too. It's such a rubbish situation that you guys have ended up in, through no fault of your own.

    Eude
     
    Fuzzbass and Duder like this.
  4. Snaxster

    Snaxster

    Nov 29, 2008
    I don't think that.

    No way. I am confident that he is free of the the burden of any feeling of guilt.

    That does not calculate. Had he done the right thing in the first place, then likely he would have made money. In that event, on continuing to run his business legitimately, of course he would be doing his best to build the basses.

    The point is that, as he demonstrated clearly, his honest effort was not predicated on whether or not he made money: he "made" money by inappropriately keeping the money he was given, then proceeded to not do his best to build the basses for many years.
     
    Obese Chess, ajkula66, Ikkir and 7 others like this.
  5. rocmonster

    rocmonster

    Oct 31, 2011
    Whether or not he feels guilt is immaterial. The fact that he can push past it or justify not fulfilling his obligations tells me everything I need to know about him.
     
    DrMole and Snaxster like this.
  6. scarswebare

    scarswebare

    Jun 2, 2016
    Well apparently he's now expanding his shop by 750sf and going to also be teaching people on some luthier-esque skills in part of the newly expanded shop. I'm very confused where he would find the time to teach anyone anything since he still owes a sh*t ton of you basses! I'd think he would be wanting to take some classes on some business 101 skills.

    Anyhow, I guess for those who find this thread because they have been wanting a scroll bass, check out Cliff Bordwell's basses. That dude does some incredible work!
     
  7. slowburnaz

    slowburnaz

    Mar 27, 2002
    Tucson, AZ
    I dunno man... I think he's got the business stuff down. I mean, how else did he earn tens of thousands of dollars without having to deliver anything? Seems like some business savvy to me! That's some next-level dream selling, kids.



    /sarcasm
     
  8. Sid Fang

    Sid Fang Reformed Fusion Player

    Jun 12, 2008
    So there’s his solution. Have students *pay* for the educational experience of building his backlog of basses.
     
    Clark W, Duder, DrMole and 8 others like this.
  9. slowburnaz

    slowburnaz

    Mar 27, 2002
    Tucson, AZ
    The man is a genius!
     
    EddiePlaysBass and CatchaCuda like this.
  10. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Well ya know, the surgeon you were assigned and consulted isn't necessarily the one who will wield the scalpel during the procedure.


    Just goofing. Darrin's way too much of a perfectionist to farm out his work to interns, I'll give him credit for that. His perfectionism is a double-edged scalpel.
     
    BassToGoGo and Duder like this.
  11. eude

    eude

    Apr 13, 2006
    London
    I just think that if he was a really bad guy, nobody would ever have heard from him again once he got the money.
    Not making excuses for him, not at all. I just think there's still the slightest chance he might come good on these builds, assuming he doesn't die of old age first...

    Eude
     
    Bob_D and Fuzzbass like this.
  12. EddiePlaysBass

    EddiePlaysBass

    Feb 26, 2009
    Belgium
    But the people whose money he got, hardly if ever heard from him again ...
     
    DrMole and Goatrope like this.
  13. charlie monroe

    charlie monroe Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 2011
    Buffalo, NY
    All of that deposit money is revenue. Excellent point snaxster.

    Anyone imagine that he declared those 10's of thousands of dollars to the IRS? We all know that suing him is a futile venture and that the cops aren't much interested in fraud charges. However, AFAIK, there is no statute of limitation for tax evasion. Nobody would get their money back, or get a bass, but just maybe they might feel justice has been served.
     
    Snaxster likes this.
  14. gln1955

    gln1955 Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
    It seems like occasionally contacting his customers or throwing a teaser on FB, while all the time actually doing no work, is part of his schtick. I can't know what's going on in his head, but it's feels like sociopathic behavior.
     
  15. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Darrin has amazing luthiery skills -- closeup photos and user reviews attest to this. He's also an artist. His scroll basses definitely won't appeal to everyone, but I like them every bit as much if not more than others in that vein. He's a perfectionist, takes pride in his work, and despite his often questionable behavior I believe he's truly in anguish over the damage to his rep. All this considered, my gut tells me that he wants to finish the back orders and get his luthiery career back on track -- the question is, can he?

    But that's just my gut. As I've said before, I'm not about to argue with anyone who doubts his intentions. He's got overdue orders going back nearly 20 years, 'nuff said.
     
    JLY and Joshua like this.
  16. JKos

    JKos Supporting Member

    Oct 26, 2010
    Torrance, CA
    There seems to be no evidence of that. Every indication seems to be exactly the opposite.
     
  17. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Actions -- I agree that there isn't much evidence. The "Iceland bass" that finally shipped out back in 2018 is a rare exception, and as Kristjan stated, that bass had been nearly complete for years.

    Words -- there have been mea culpas (often but not always with excuses) on social media, including a YouTube video in which he was literally crying about how he's let his customers down (removed from his channel years ago, I believe).

    We all know about actions versus words. Just offering evidence for my gut opinion.
     
    Duder and Joshua like this.
  18. MatchFive

    MatchFive Supporting Member

    Jul 26, 2019
    I'm not sure how many basses in total he owes, but you would think by now even if he made one a year he would be caught up?
     
    Fuzzbass likes this.
  19. Fuzzbass

    Fuzzbass P5 with overdrive Gold Supporting Member

    Darrin likes to make promises such as "half the basses (or all the basses) done by the end of the year". Sure, it's significantly more efficient to build similar basses (four strings, whatever) in a batch... but he's never delivered a batch. We're now reaching the three year point with no completions, so yeah, I'd also like to say "dude, just build one at a time!" However his scroll basses are amazingly intricate, and the backlog is significant, so I understand why he only seems to think in terms of batches.

    As for the backlog: within the last couple/few years, one of Darrin's stated goals was to complete 10 overdue basses by X date, and he said that this was "about half", so we can estimate 20 total. I believe a one-bass-per-year rate would be better than his actual completion rate over the past two decades, but I'm guessing there are at least a dozen (?) Huff basses out in the wild, so a flat one-per-year would not be enough. One-per-year in addition to those he's already completed should have done the trick. That doesn't seem like much, but it wasn't done, so here we are.
     
  20. BadJazz

    BadJazz Supporting Member

    Nov 29, 2007
    Eugene, Oregon
    I made this a few weeks ago but neglected to post it. Feel free to save this picture and re-post when needed. (I have the text file as well and can update in the rather rare event that something changes.)

    Huff.jpg
     
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

     
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