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Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?
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Posted 2018-01-04 12:46 PM (#555584)
Subject: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?

New User

Posts: 1

I recall years worth of discussion on issues dealing with SMS for upholstery materials and door panel restorations. Mostly had to do with unreliable staff, long delays, communications problems, wrong orders shipped, etc. Have they gotten over those problems? Are there others I should consider (especially those that make door panels)? This is a simple 1959 Dodge coronet panel, with the embossed mylar across the top, and a mylar and whilte ribbon-strip across 1/3 the way down the bottom.

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The Adventurer
Posted 2018-01-05 1:51 AM (#555644 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: RE: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?

Elite Veteran

Posts: 707
Location: Melbourne, Australia
They have a new website as of earlier this week , and say they are making things better but who knows . Doug Is on retirement age , so it will be interesting to hear if they have improved . They have always been ok with me , but I know others have had problems .
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Posted 2018-01-05 5:59 PM (#555672 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 3454
Location: Northen Virginia
I'm sure they are customers here with unfulfilled orders for a couple of years.
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Posted 2018-01-08 9:36 AM (#555846 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: RE: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 3426
Location: Quebec, Canada
From what I have read here over the years, I guess I am one of the few customers that have had perfect service, and very quick delivery time with SMS (perfect order, shipped and received here in Canada in about two weeks). I had ordered two rolls of rare seat cloth for my canadian Dodge Regent, and it was a perfect match, and they were the only suppliers to carry it. I guess most problems occur when you order fully sewn covers and repro complete door panels.

I am now considering another order for some rolls of cloth, and I would take the plunge without hesitation.
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Posted 2018-01-09 6:49 AM (#555899 - in reply to #555846)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 6

I too have no complaints. Doug was happy to send samples over here for perusal first and the shipping of material (yards only) was fairly prompt. Like David, I wouldn't hesitate to order any other material based on my experiences so far.
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Posted 2018-01-12 5:57 PM (#556123 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: RE: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 169
Location: Southern CA
I ordered some cloth about three weeks ago and received it today. Will order again. My seat centers and Lower door panels have embossed tuck and roll. I’m considering ordering some embossed vinyl from SMS to match, the other option is to have the upholstery guy stitch them in. I’ll probably try the order and see what happens, I’m busy under the hood now anyway, so waiting a few months won’t be an issue.
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Posted 2018-02-12 8:15 AM (#557939 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: RE: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 1263
Location: Hickory, NC
SMS is run by a idiot. Their business practices and ethics are horrible. I've dealt with them three times and all three times was a joke.

First off was trying to get original seat cloth for a 1953 Oldsmobile for a friend. Doug assured us that their material was 100% correct and they would custom make it to exact specifications. Requested was the original blue striped fabric. What arrived was a shade of purple and totally wrong. Of course Doug knew the car did not have a scrap of original material in it so he was 100% confident in his scam. SMS was contacted again and we complained about the color so they sent another roll of fabric after the first order was returned. What came was some kind of fabric in a green hue. Again we complained that the color wasn't right. He then claimed it was a 100% match and was perfect in every detail and that he was looking at it in a dealer book. What he didn't know is that my friend had a dealer book as well. So we sent him photos of the crap he was trying to pass off as original right next to a perfect factory sample. The color didn't match and neither did the weave or pattern. Doug then all of a sudden didn't have anything to say. He was caught in his lie. My friend got fed up and ended up getting 1957 Plymouth Belvedere hardtop fabric which they had yardage in stock as he was tired of waiting. However it has faded terribly since being installed.

I wanted to get original seat bolster material for my 1959 Plymouth. I had gotten insert material and NOS rear seat covers from Original Auto already. So I needed the bolster cloth so it would match the NOS rear seat covers. SMS was the only choice. They sent samples and they matched perfectly. I ordered enough for the front seat. What came was something very similar but totally wrong. Different color and weave. It obviously wouldn't match the original materials of the rear seat. I contacted SMS and they said it was correct. Of course they didn't know I had NOS material on hand so I sent them another photo of the new cloth against the original. Then sent them a photo of their own sample which was original. So Doug then sends me the correct material which turns out to be a bunch of cut up scraps. So obviously they were trying to pass off some old crap they had on the shelf as original. After heated conversation I ended up having to use the cut up scraps and have my upholsterer sew pieces together to make it work. Ridiculous for what I paid for the material.

I had refused to do business with SMS since the last debacle. But I wanted to get original material for my 1958 Fury just because of what it is. I caved and called up SMS. They sent samples and it seemed good. I asked if it was in stock and I was assured that it was and it would be at my door in probably a week. Awesome right? Wrong. 2 weeks go by and still nothing. Of course they had already charged my card for the full amount which wasn't cheap. I contacted SMS and they said it would be coming soon. 3 weeks. Nothing. I contact them again and now I'm told the material has to be made but no worries its already being done at the mill. 4 weeks. Nada. Everytime I talk to them (through email because they won't talk to you on the phone unless you are giving them money) there's new excuses. "It's a complicated weave." "Takes time to do it right." "It's coming soon." Everytime I ask for a time frame it just gets longer and longer. Now its been a few months and still nothing. So I ask for a refund. Then Doug starts belittling me. Asking what crap I'm going to use in my car. And how it will look bad and that anything but his material would be inferior and blah blah. He refuses to refund my money. I demand a refund and then he says that its people like me who can't wait that ruin things and makes it oh so hard for his business. Then I learn that he's basically got 10 people waiting for this fabric apparently. Again I request a refund especially since I was told it was in stock. All of a sudden he says he does have some and that he'd send it to me quickly. What arrived? Enough quality fabric to redo my entire car? WRONG! I received a bunch of scraps. It was the material he cuts the samples from to send to people. So I'm in at $800 for a bunch of mix matched scraps of various cuts. Also none of the scraps match each other. They are different hues and weaves. So who knows whats correct anyhow? I am furious (no pun intended) and demand a refund immediately. He then asks what I'd give for the material. I tell him $150. He refuses that and then starts ignoring me. I continuously email SMS without reply. So I get my bank involved and they refund my money and they start going after SMS. Then one of Dougs minions contacts me and wants the scraps back. They send UPS to take the material and then still refuse to refund it. Long story short...I had to get my bank to get my money back as SMS wouldn't. Then after all that Doug sends me an email saying he'd love to see how crappy my car looks with whatever I put in it. Who does business like that?

So if you're wont do business with them. SMS is scam city. Doug is a POS as well. You'll be waiting years before you receive to just have your trim shop make something themselves.
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Posted 2018-02-12 10:05 AM (#557944 - in reply to #557939)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 3033
Location: Chestertown, NY ( near Lake George)
Waited 14 months for the imprinted vinyl section of a 59 Coronet seat cover, it did come perfect, the soft material with the multi colored thread took 2 months, so except for delays and price changes, it wasn't too bad a transaction.
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Dave L.
Posted 2018-02-13 11:45 PM (#558081 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?

Extreme Veteran

Posts: 310
Location: Tacoma, WA
I just got my complex order after just under a year, and that was with some stock vinyl patterns and material, plus some of unknown origin that had to be matched. And some that needed custom heat-seaming that needed to be matched in pattern and pleat spacing, all of which they matched very well, so I am happy. Though some were standard patterns for the year and in their catalog, they still had to be manufactured and embossed seams applied. I ordered very early, and I specified no rush on shipment; I can wait until it's all ready. (I still don't need it yet; it was just a Christmas present to myself as a motivator.)

Edited by Dave L. 2018-02-14 12:10 AM
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Posted 2018-02-14 11:09 AM (#558096 - in reply to #558081)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 2803
Location: NY & VT
Evidently Original Auto Interiors has just sold their entire business to Doug Pollack aka SMS, as the owner Tom Ames has retired.
I've done business with OAI several times over 25 years, and it was always a pleasure. Now we will no longer have that as an alternative for original fabric.
If SMS was bad before,you can just imagine how it will be now that they're the only game in town.. shudder.
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Posted 2018-02-14 11:34 PM (#558128 - in reply to #555584)
Subject: Re: Has SMS Auto Fabrics gotten better?


Posts: 2496
I wonder really how hard it is to get some cloth made in China... I have some connections maybe ill ask at least.

There is no real market though unless you doing all makes and models like SMS is I guess?

I know its expensive stuff.
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