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I think I'm a dying breed


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#41 69NovaYenko

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 10:59 AM

I needed a new battery last fall so I dropped by the NTB to picked one out and opted to let them do the swap out.  Well after a  short wait I finally was them bring my car into the bay. With my complimentary cup of dish water tasting, luke warm coffee in hand I eased out the waiting room and wondered over to the service bay where my car was parked. I discovered a young twenty one year old service tech under the hood with a ratchet attempting to remove the bolts from battery hold bracket. I engaged him in some general conversation as he worked on my car. He quickly made it a point to tell me how “GOOD” a mechanic he was; in fact he was the best darn mechanic in the entire shop. Additionally, he informed me that  the “old timers” around the shop with15 to 20 plus years of hands-on experience were jealous of his awesome skills and could not match his knowledge..after all he just got  out of tech school eighteen months ago and has been trained in the latest and greatest whiz bang technology. NTB was just a stepping stone, he had plans on becoming a lead shop manager for one of the big car dealerships or better yet opening his own shop.

 

 The whole time he is patting himself on the back I`m watching him struggle with removing the bolts from the battery hold down tray. He had both hands on the ratchet handle, you could see the muscles in his arms trembling, the veins in his neck and temple standing up; he was up on the balls of his feet and the bolts would not yield to his brute force attack. By now one of the old timers wandered by and in an attempt to be helpful to his young colleague suggested that he hit the bolts with some rust release penetrate spray. The seasoned veteran even tossed him a can of spray out of his own toolbox.

 

Now, the young lad was insulted. He didn’t need any advise from this old fart.  After all he just got out of tech school eighteen months ago and has been trained in the latest and greatest whiz bang technology. No one in the shop knew more than he did. So, he grabs a twelve inch piece of half inch pipe from the bottom tray of his toolbox and inserts it over the ratchet handle. “What I need is move leverage”, he says to me. It was at that point a chill ran up my spine as he put every ounce of strength he could summon from the mechanic gods and pulled and yanked on the ratchet. Before I could yell “ STOP” there was a loud bang and his entire body literally fell face forward into my cars engine compartment. YES…he sheered the bolt head off!!!!! The service manager pulled him off my car and got the old timer, the one that had tried to assist him in the start, to finish the job. The old timer removed the remaining undamaged bolt after a few squirts of penetrate spray. He then had to heat the remains of the sheered off bolt and work in back and forth with a pair of vice grips until he was able to extract the last remains of the bolt with a easy-all. He then scavenge the shop for a similar sized bolt and re-thread the damaged bolt hole…it took an hour and twenty minute get everything back to normal.

 

I assure you we still need you old school guys because you have far more knowledge and common sense than a lot of the "just out of tech school eighteen months ago and highly trained in the latest and greatest whiz bang technology" techs..trust me and this is a TRUE story!!!


Edited by 69NovaYenko, 20 October 2013 - 02:28 PM.


#42 charlie8575

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 11:02 AM

Thank you, Greg, for a badly-needed laugh. I hope your car suffered no permanent damage from the clown.

 

Charlie Larkin



#43 mnwildpunk

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Posted 20 October 2013 - 02:17 PM

Something very similar happened in the shop I work at a young guy had a very stuck bolt and using a breaker bar and a pipe extention with all his strengh he reefed on it having it slip and he bashed his head open and kbocked himself out. My buddy took some p.b. And a lil heat he removed the bolt with a normal sized 1/2" rachet the young guy was quite humiliated and quit soon after

#44 slusher

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 03:10 AM

Something very similar happened in the shop I work at a young guy had a very stuck bolt and using a breaker bar and a pipe extention with all his strengh he reefed on it having it slip and he bashed his head open and kbocked himself out. My buddy took some p.b. And a lil heat he removed the bolt with a normal sized 1/2" rachet the young guy was quite humiliated and quit soon after

Nothing beats experience....



#45 Terry Sumner

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 05:29 AM

Just try finding a machine shop that can rebuild a set of heads for a small block Chevy. Go ahead, I dare ya...

Believe it or not Bud...I have THREE all within 15 miles of my house that are complete automotive engine machine shops! Arico's Machine in Jewett City, B&M Machine in Brooklyn and L&L Machine in Lisbon!



#46 weasel

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 06:20 AM

I am no expert on car emissions, but I don't think any 1975 car can run cleaner than a 2013 car. You might be able to tune it to periodically run clean, but wouldn't it take continuous adjustments to keep running clean all the time? I grew up in the 70s and I can remember well the smell of car exhaust - sitting in traffic or on cold winter mornings waiting for the windows to defrost. Kids today have no idea what that old exhaust even smells like.

I am no advocate of "throw away" technology, and I think the ability to work on your car is a noble endeavor, but I also am pretty realistic when I say today's cars are a lot more reliable, safer, and cleaner than cars 40 years ago.

 

 

well, would pass emissions test kinda thing...when they stil tested..lol



#47 charlie8575

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Posted 21 October 2013 - 07:09 AM

Just try finding a machine shop that can rebuild a set of heads for a small block Chevy. Go ahead, I dare ya...

J&M Machine, Southborough, Ma., Neil. The Gulbankians can rebuild/repair/replace almost anything.

 

Charlie Larkin



#48 Maindrian Pace

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 03:00 PM

A friend of mine referred a friend of his to me several weeks ago. This guy had a '66 Mustang convertible with a 289/auto that had a terrible rough idle in gear at a stop. Idled OK in park, drove down the road decently enough, but maybe 30 of the 195 horses had escaped the corral. He had already been to another local shop that rebuilt the carb, installed new plugs and wires, tried all different timing settings, idle speeds, mixtures, 2 sets of jets, etc. They then told him that the miss was a burned valve or bad guides, and a valve job would have to be done at a minimum. Estimate: $1,500. He didn't trust them.

 

The first thing I did was a compression check, 145-152 lbs in all eight, vacuum gauge steady at 12 inches at idle. A bit low - check timing, way advanced, crank it back down to 8 degrees from 15 or some such, vacuum up to 16 inches. Adjust air/fuel, now up to 18 inches, this engine is in good shape... but still has the fast miss at idle in gear. A fast miss is almost always ignition, so I figure the dwell is a mile off, like everything else was. So I pop the cap, and there it is: a Pertronix Ignitor II. Now I've had plenty of experience with these things, I even run a Pertronix I on my Comet - and I know that they either work flawlessly, or they run bad or worse. It didn't help that the installer of this unit several years back hooked it up to the resisted wire that feeds the coil, (8V) when the instructions call for a clean 12V connection, so I changed that, re-gapped the unit because it was too far closed, and... no difference at all.

 

So I pulled it all out, changed back to points and condenser, fired right up and settled to a smooth idle. Corrected timing again, closed plugs from .045 to .035, runs perfect and the missing horses are back in the corral. Owner elected to stay with points rather than buy a new Pertronix, and was very happy that it wasn't an internal engine problem. Bad diagnostics can cost customers a lot of money.

 

-MJS



#49 Danno

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Posted 22 October 2013 - 04:28 PM

True, Mike.  And it's even funnier (ironic) that bad diagnostics almost always involve the most expensive repair possible.  Funny they never seem to mis-diagnose cheaper!



#50 Ace-Garageguy

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:27 AM

I'm always amazed that the 'tards will still diagnose a burned valve without even doing a compression test. Just goes to show how few folks REALLY know how an IC engine operates. I wonder what the shop's excuse would have been if the Mustang with the bad Pertronix unit had HAD the recommended valve job and had still run like dog exhaust.

 

I'm also am frequently entertained by how many aftermarket parts are installed with total disregard for the instructions, and then the installer blames the unit. I guess reading the instructions (and understanding them) isn't deemed to be a necessity.

 

My hat's off to Maindrian Pace (Mike).  All the right moves, in the right order. B)


Edited by Ace-Garageguy, 24 October 2013 - 02:42 AM.


#51 JunkPile

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:44 AM

'tards....REALLY Ace?



#52 MAGNUM4342

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:48 AM

'tards....REALLY Ace?

X2! To me that word, truncated or in it's entirety is just as offensive as some words that they've tried to ban!



#53 JunkPile

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:57 AM

I'm always amazed that the 'tards will still diagnose a burned valve without even doing a compression test. Just goes to show how few folks REALLY know how an IC engine operates. I wonder what the shop's excuse would have been if the Mustang with the bad Pertronix unit had HAD the recommended valve job and had still run like .

 

I'm also am frequently entertained by how many aftermarket parts are installed with total disregard for the instructions, and then the installer blames the unit. I guess reading the instructions (and understanding them) isn't deemed to be a necessity.

 

My hat's off to Maindrian Pace (Mike).  All the right moves, in the right orde

Isn't it about time for you to get over yourself ???



#54 george 53

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 09:59 AM

 

OK George I have to call BS. Did you really rebuild the rear suspension on a "Porche" 917 ??? First you should know it is spelled Porsche, second the 917 was a 12 cylinder full race car that was run in Can Am and Le Mans, not a street driven Porsche. I highly doubt that the Porsche factory engineers would have let a high school kid from Detroit work on one of their, at the time state of the art race cars. Don't worry, I do believe the old part. :rolleyes:

No problem Rod. My autoshop teacher at Ecorse High School's name was Leonard Armstrong. Mr. Armstrongs brother was a Dr. who enjoyed raceing. In 1971 whenI was in the 12 gr, Dr. Armstong aquired TWO 917 Porsche's and had them sent over from Germany. One was all white with gold scallops and the other was a weird candy green with gold scallops, supposedly run at Le Mans. Mr Armstrong, the teacher, asked mysel and my classmate  to dissassemble and check the bearings and axles for stress cracks and trueness. It was a big job, but with the service manuals and his guidance we did it. That's when he took us out at Lime Rock I believe, it was in Ohio, and we got to ride in it, to MAKE SURE we had done it right. I'm glad we HAD!



#55 69NovaYenko

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 10:24 AM

True, Mike.  And it's even funnier (ironic) that bad diagnostics almost always involve the most expensive repair possible.  Funny they never seem to mis-diagnose cheaper!

There are a lot of highly skilled, competent and honest  repair shops and mechanics (of all ages) out there!!!

With that said, now-a-days, there are some repair technicians and auto services facilities (particularly some that are affiliated  with large nationally chains)  who`s focus is being a "good earner" for the parent organization. Either, the  national or regional office  have mandated  that each store must hit specific sales quotas or bring in X amount of $$$ monthly if the employee/shop manager wishes to be seen in a favorable light with his superiors. This type of environment breeds up-selling and /or diagnostics involving  the most expensive repair possible.

 

While I hate to say this and my words may seem harshly grotesque to some;however  it is an unfortunate sign  of the times. Buzz words like "friendly", helpful","customer service", "valued customer", honesty" and "integrity" are mere punch lines to get you the customer in the door; sadly "profitability"   are the new marching orders of the day for some (not all) repair facilities/service techs.


Edited by 69NovaYenko, 23 October 2013 - 10:57 AM.


#56 Ace-Garageguy

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 12:01 PM

Isn't it about time for you to get over yourself ???

 

Gee, just because I know my stuff and I'm not afraid to call an idiot an idiot in this over-pampered PC BS world? Nah, I'm okay. My mission in life just isn't to be inoffensive when dealing with rampant incompetence, which IS rampant, in EVERY industry, and I see it DAILY.

 

I am sorry if anyone was offended by my word choice, but it's accurately descriptive of the behavior noted. At least someone intellectually challenged (happy now ? ) has an excuse for being incompetent in a technically demanding setting.

 

Let me clarify. DIAGNOSING AN ENGINE MALFUNCTION AND RECOMMENDING A VALVE JOB, WITHOUT DOING A COMPRESSION TEST...IS INCOMPETENT...or just plain dishonest. Everything else that was done to the car was idiot monkey-motion as well. When Mike got it and went through the right procedure, surprise...he got the car to run right. Simply amazing what happens when you actually KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING.


Edited by Ace-Garageguy, 23 October 2013 - 12:39 PM.


#57 Deano

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 01:30 PM

 

Gee, just because I know my stuff and I'm not afraid to call an idiot an idiot in this over-pampered PC BS world? Nah, I'm okay. My mission in life just isn't to be inoffensive when dealing with rampant incompetence, which IS rampant, in EVERY industry, and I see it DAILY.

 

I am sorry if anyone was offended by my word choice, but it's accurately descriptive of the behavior noted. At least someone intellectually challenged (happy now ? ) has an excuse for being incompetent in a technically demanding setting.

 

Let me clarify. DIAGNOSING AN ENGINE MALFUNCTION AND RECOMMENDING A VALVE JOB, WITHOUT DOING A COMPRESSION TEST...IS INCOMPETENT...or just plain dishonest. Everything else that was done to the car was idiot monkey-motion as well. When Mike got it and went through the right procedure, surprise...he got the car to run right. Simply amazing what happens when you actually KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

Interesting how your descriptor didn't offend me, like I'm sure in this modern society it was supposed to; of course it didn't apply to me.  I also refuse to be offended on someone else's behalf; let THEM be offended for themselves.  I could go on and get into a rant, but then I'd just get into trouble.



#58 wrecker388

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 01:58 PM

...and we're already encountering the "not economically feasible to repair" syndrome when all of the fancy computer management ###### gets old and quits. There are already MANY electronic components no longer serviced by the vehicle manufacturers, and the aftermarket doesn't have them either. Cars like the old Ford that responded happily to a competent tech with a simple carb-rebuild kit have been replaced by a fleet of vehicles THAT WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP OPERATING without significant re-engineering.

100% Agreement. A friend of mine who has a 98 Sunfire has repeatedly tried to tell me how much better his car is than my Thunderbird. He will argue and say that it will still start when it is 35 years old. I then proceed to tell him that the computer  would have long  died, and he tries to call me an idiot and say the computer will still be good. He currently goes to the local Vocational school if that shows what the youngest generation is learning.


Edited by wrecker388, 23 October 2013 - 01:59 PM.


#59 tbill

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 12:15 PM

well, on a lighter note, in the past week and a half I have had to replace a water pump on two buicks, one being a 68 riv, and the other a 62 electra 225 rag top. I mean really, what are the chances of these two cars showing up in my area in the same week, and both needing the same repair.....[ ya, I know, apparently pretty good from my little story, haha, but I found it funny]



#60 charlie8575

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 12:57 PM

 He currently goes to the local Vocational school if that shows what the youngest generation is learning.

Having taught, Riley, I know what the youngest generation is learning on all fronts- math, language, social studies, science, and practical arts-type classes like shop and home ec.

 

Wanna know something? What they are learning terrifies me, and it should terrify everyone else, too.

 

Charlie Larkin