Lots of ways but my favorite is the one guy I know who gets more than he is owed.
Here is what I'm told:
Screw small claims court.
Send guy registered letter giving him 10 days to pay or you will have your attorney file suit in district court seeking full pay and attorney fees.
Now an attorney will not do a small case like $1000, so you find one that will work with you on an hourly based fee.
You instruct not to send a demand letter as just a waste of time, you tell him to file suit for full amount and attorney fees.
Ok, the attorney may require you to give him a $1000 up front to bill his hours from, no problem within a week you will have your money and money for the attorney fees, why???
Because this guy when he goes to an attorney will learn real fast, it will be cheaper now to give you your 1400 inc atty fees than fight it and good chance of losing.
All my work aside from a few large corporate accounts is COD, meaning no money, no car. Be clear from the outset that payment is due on delivery. Get a card swiper and tell the customers that while you aren't able to loan money, credit card companies are happy to do so.
Now after being stuck for a $900 Honda Odyssey Slide door I get a deposit to cover parts on customer pay collision jobs. On restorations I do a contract and work off the owners $. The owner pays up front a sum first say 2000 or so when that is used up or billed out they own more. Also some advice from Shine I do record them as it is funny what you said how much free work you will do for them!!!!! And yes NO car leaves until payment .