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Gonzo

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Gonzo last won the day on December 9

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About Gonzo

  • Rank
    Expert Member
  • Birthday 01/10/1959

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  • Business Address
    9911 e. 5th st., Tulsa, Oklahoma, 74146
  • Automotive Franchise
    Other
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    Other
  • Certifications
    ASE CMAT
    USMC
    TEA (Tulsa Executive Association) Past president and chairman of the board
    FATHER, HUSBAND,

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  1. I recently sold my business, but ive been trying to sell it for about 2 years. Circumstances meant that I had to figure out how to sell it now, and still turn a profit...without having to resort to the dreaded auction scenario. The solution for me, sell the shop in two steps. I offered the main shop equipment and the client base at one price, then offered the remaining equipment as a separate sale. In other words, this way I could attract potential buyers who were looking to buy cheaper, only to find out they really needed to step up and buy everything else. It worked for me.
  2. Vision KC

    Only in my own feeble mind. LOL
  3. Vision KC

    I've got two invites to Vision this year. The usual from the magazine company, which I'll be hanging around the booth a lot (that's where you're most likely to find me) and the tech college I've been teaching at. They're new at this "convention" stuff and the college is very small, but their trying to make it work. I'm going to introduce them around and see if I can get them up to speed on today's technology and bring in some better testing equipment such as Consulab trainers and stuff like that. Should be a hoot. OH, and the magazine company is working really hard to get rooms at the convention center this year so we don't have to drive all over town like we have in the past. LOL Looking forward to meeting everyone. Some of the places you'll find me: In the convention center at the Babcox magazine booth, the AVI booth, MotorAge and the ASE booth (if they are going to be there. ASE got a bit pissy the last year or two because Vision wasn't going to give them a free booth anymore) and at the Bar area. (that's where everybody hangs out)
  4. Ode to Santa and the Economy There goes Santa, running for his sleigh; He’s gotta run fast, to get away. You see, the economy has struck the North Pole as well; The elves are on strike, and his wife is givin' em' hell. These days when Santa appears at the local department store; It’s not just for fun or photos, but for gifts he needs to score. He'll check the store layout and make a quick dash; Why even Santa max'd out his credit card and is low on cash. So off he goes, into the night; To find those gifts, and get out of sight. Now, he’s not going to make a whole lot of stops; ‘Cause look out Santa… here comes the cops. Santa leaps to his sleigh and flys far into the night; Carrying all those gifts, on his yearly flight. Way into the morning, the police search high and low; Only to find a few tracks left in the snow. You'll hear all the alarms blaring, late into the night; But old Saint Nick will be long gone, and clean out of sight. Santa has to be quick, to have it done by Christmas Eve; So many gifts, and so many places to be… The presents will be wrapped, and the tags will be off; Cause old Santa is very careful, not to get caught. So check your presents, early on Christmas day; (Keep it hush-hush if they're from Santa, OK...?) Now, I don’t know if Old Saint Nick, stopped at your house or not; But If he did … … … … … .....THOSE GIFTS ARE . . . HOT ! ! PEACE ON EARTH, GOOD WILL TO ALL MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! ! !
  5. Ode to Santa and the Economy There goes Santa, running for his sleigh; He’s gotta run fast, to get away. You see, the economy has struck the North Pole as well; The elves are on strike, and his wife is givin' em' hell. These days when Santa appears at the local department store; It’s not just for fun or photos, but for gifts he needs to score. He'll check the store layout and make a quick dash; Why even Santa max'd out his credit card and is low on cash. So off he goes, into the night; To find those gifts, and get out of sight. Now, he’s not going to make a whole lot of stops; ‘Cause look out Santa… here comes the cops. Santa leaps to his sleigh and flys far into the night; Carrying all those gifts, on his yearly flight. Way into the morning, the police search high and low; Only to find a few tracks left in the snow. You'll hear all the alarms blaring, late into the night; But old Saint Nick will be long gone, and clean out of sight. Santa has to be quick, to have it done by Christmas Eve; So many gifts, and so many places to be… The presents will be wrapped, and the tags will be off; Cause old Santa is very careful, not to get caught. So check your presents, early on Christmas day; (Keep it hush-hush if they're from Santa, OK...?) Now, I don’t know if Old Saint Nick, stopped at your house or not; But If he did … … … … … .....THOSE GIFTS ARE . . . HOT ! ! PEACE ON EARTH, GOOD WILL TO ALL MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! ! ! View full article
  6. Checkin In

    Well, I think thats great. Sorry I influenced your decision, or maybe I should say, your welcome. Lol
  7. To all my fellow shop owners and friends here at ASO, today is a day that I knew had to come along sooner or later.  I've closed the sale on my repair shop that I started with my own two hands nearly 34 years ago.  I hope the new owner becomes a member of ASO too.  I'll still be around and for those followers of Gonzo's Toolbox ... don't worry... I've got lots more stories to tell. 

  8. 12 Days of Christmas at an Automotive Repair Shop You know the song, so just sing along with me in the holiday spirit. On the 1st day of Christmas a customer sent to me: A cartridge for my grease gun. On the 2nd day Christmas a customer sent to me: 2 Latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 3rd day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 3 Wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 4th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 4 Wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 5th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 5 Piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 6th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 6 Brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 7th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 7 Dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 8th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 8 Engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 9th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 9 Coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 10th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 10 Headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 11th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 11 Gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 12th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 12 Trannys slipping, 11 gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
  9. 12 Days of Christmas at an Automotive Repair Shop You know the song, so just sing along with me in the holiday spirit. On the 1st day of Christmas a customer sent to me: A cartridge for my grease gun. On the 2nd day Christmas a customer sent to me: 2 Latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 3rd day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 3 Wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 4th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 4 Wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 5th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 5 Piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 6th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 6 Brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 7th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 7 Dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 8th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 8 Engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 9th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 9 Coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 10th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 10 Headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 11th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 11 Gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. On the 12th day of Christmas a customer sent to me: 12 Trannys slipping, 11 gears a-grinding, 10 headlights blinking, 9 coils a-sparking, 8 engines leaking, 7 dash lights flashing, 6 brand new sockets, 5 piston rings, 4 wire straps, 3 wrench ends, 2 latex gloves, and a cartridge for my grease gun. Have a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. View full article
  10. Checkin In

    Well, Jeff... ya beat me to it. But not by much. Dec. 8th/2017 my shop officially changes hands. Yep, I've sold out myself. Now, I'm teaching at a small technical college as well as doing all my usual writing. It's a bitter sweet time, but overall I'm so glad that I was able to sell the shop. Now, I can pursue new adventures in the automotive world. Good luck Jeff!
  11. The Magical Elf There’s a Christmas tradition in our family involving a little magical elf. This elf lives in a box all year until December 1st. Then he magically comes to life. At night he gets into all kinds of mischief, and just before the little ones get up in the morning, he freezes motionless, wherever or whatever he was doing at that very moment. He’s been known to spill flour on the kitchen counters and make snow angels, sometimes he can be found sitting on the toothpaste tube, one night he even wrapped the big screen TV like a huge present with a large bow on top! He could be anywhere, you just never know what he’ll be into next, and he seems to stay busy getting into things all night long. But, even when he is motionless he’s actually working… watching and listening to all the children in the house. His job is to report back to the north pole so Santa can be sure to have every little boy and girl is on the right list. You know, that “Naughty or Nice list” you've heard about. Yep, now you know, Santa has his own spies, and that little elf doesn’t miss a thing. My oldest daughter Katie, is continuing the tradition with her own magical elf with her kids. Let me introduce you to my three adorable granddaughters; Kelsie is 12, she’s the nonbeliever. She doesn’t think Santa is real at all… that’s kid stuff… she’s all grown up, you know. Kaitlyn is 9, she’s the talker… even if she’s a part of whatever trouble has been brewing up, she can't help but to spill the beans sooner or later. She’s still a big fan of the guy in the big red suit. Now, ask her if he brings presents she'll tell you, "Only one, but the rest are from mom and dad." Then there's little Audrey, she’s 6. Now Audrey…well, she and Santa go way back. (Too cute for words the way she tells her stories about Santa.) She’s all about decorating the tree, and making sure the milk and cookies are set out in perfect arrangement for Santa on his big day, and of course writing letters to the big guy as often as possible. With these little munchkins, you can count on one thing for sure, there’s always something about to unfold at the house, especially around the holidays. This story is a special one, this is about the first year for Katie's magical elf. As the grand-kids will later tell me, "Pappa, he came in his own little elf box, all decorated like a little house and everything!" There are even holes on the sides for him to breathe, cause ya know, ya gotta keep him comfortable and all. The house rules about the magic elf are simple. No one is allowed near the box, no touching, no looking, no poking, and most certainly no encouraging your sister into breaking the rules. (Gotta have that rule) So on the shelf this little house sat… waiting for the right time to make his entrance. All the kids understood the rules, and they all knew the story of the magical elf. The big fear of course wasn't mom, it was that little elf, and what he would say to Santa. Well, except of course for the nonbeliever. It was December 1st, and Katie was so busy preoccupied with putting up decorations she had completely forgotten about the little elf. She had to get him out of the box and into his mischief as soon as possible. Time for a plan, a plan that would distract those little all seeing, all knowing, and all hearing little ones long enough for her to accomplish her mission. She had an idea that just might work. Get the younger two interested in decorating cookies while nonbeliever was upstairs in her room. Then, she could pop the little guy out of his box and put him somewhere for the girls to discover later. The smell of fresh baked cookies filled the house as the two younger ones raced to the kitchen to help with the decorating. The elf "de-boxing" was well on its way. Katie crept out of the kitchen unnoticed while the two were busy adding sprinkles to everything and anything that was on or near the cookies. A quick peak up the stairs to make sure the non-believer was out of sight, OK good there. Time for the little elf to get out of his resting place. As she carefully opened the box she could hear tiny footsteps coming down the hallway. The rush was on, Mom can’t be caught with the box opened, there was no turning back now. Oh no.... what’s this???? The new little elf is wire tied into his little house!!! Quick, quick, untie him and get him out of there! The footsteps grew closer as the last wire tie came loose, then with a quick fling the elf went sailing through the air and landed in the branches of the Christmas tree. His head was buried amongst all the lights and ornaments with only his butt and legs exposed… undignified yes, but no harm, no foul… the game was on. Just as the tattle-teller (Kaitlyn) rounded the corner Katie put her mom face on. You know, that typical motherly look we all know from being on the other end of the situation. Then, using her best “mom” voice she tilted the elf's little box down to show her the empty box and said, “Kaitlyn have you been in this box? Where is the elf?” (Now that's some mom quick thinking) Kaitlyn was completely surprised, “No Mommy, I know I'm not supposed to touch it. It wasn’t me… honest…ah, ah, it was… ah, Audrey.” Of course by now, that mom voice brought the youngest one running into the room carrying a half-eaten cookie while leaving a long trail of sprinkles behind her. “Where’s the elf mommy?” she asked. Katie with that stern look still on her face said to her, “Did you open the box?” Audrey, now almost in tears thinking the little elf must have ran away, “No Mommy, where did he go?” Katie wasn’t about to let up on the Mommy thing just yet, but decided to soften the blow of their now missing elf and assure them it was perfectly alright. She said, “Well, it is December 1st, he's probably somewhere in the house.” About then the nonbeliever came down from her bedroom, “What’s going on?” Kaitlyn quickly told everything (as usual), “He got out, he’s in the house, and we’ve got to go find him! Come on, let’s go!” Now Kelsie, who didn’t seem so interested, is now very interested. But, she was going to logically explain the whole thing, even though she didn't believe in all of this "magic elf" stuff she knew mom had know idea either. You know, since mom and Kelsie are both older and more more mature, mom couldn't hide anything from her. With firm conviction, Kelsie said to them, “There’s no way he could have gotten out. He was strapped in there!” (That little sneak peeker!!) Clearly she had more interest in that little elf than she let on. Kelsie, being the oldest, took charge of the situation and told the other two, “You look over there, you go over there, and I’ll look over here.” Off went the three of them, running through the house in search of one small magical elf, while mom stood by the tree still clutching the empty box. They eventually found him and screamed with joy like the little girls they are. As for Kelsie, well, the non believer, she knew mom is really Santa after all, (the hand writing on the present tags and the way the packages are wrapped are exactly like her birthday presents and Santa doesn't bring birthday presents… sorry mom, she’s figured it out.). But, anything to do with that magic elf, just ask her, "Oh he’s real grandpa… he’s very real." There’s no doubt in my mind the magic of the season is for the kid in all of us, and sometimes all it takes is a little mischievous elf to bring out. Wishing you and your family (and your little magical elves) a Very Merry Christmas. View full article
  12. The Magical Elf There’s a Christmas tradition in our family involving a little magical elf. This elf lives in a box all year until December 1st. Then he magically comes to life. At night he gets into all kinds of mischief, and just before the little ones get up in the morning, he freezes motionless, wherever or whatever he was doing at that very moment. He’s been known to spill flour on the kitchen counters and make snow angels, sometimes he can be found sitting on the toothpaste tube, one night he even wrapped the big screen TV like a huge present with a large bow on top! He could be anywhere, you just never know what he’ll be into next, and he seems to stay busy getting into things all night long. But, even when he is motionless he’s actually working… watching and listening to all the children in the house. His job is to report back to the north pole so Santa can be sure to have every little boy and girl is on the right list. You know, that “Naughty or Nice list” you've heard about. Yep, now you know, Santa has his own spies, and that little elf doesn’t miss a thing. My oldest daughter Katie, is continuing the tradition with her own magical elf with her kids. Let me introduce you to my three adorable granddaughters; Kelsie is 12, she’s the nonbeliever. She doesn’t think Santa is real at all… that’s kid stuff… she’s all grown up, you know. Kaitlyn is 9, she’s the talker… even if she’s a part of whatever trouble has been brewing up, she can't help but to spill the beans sooner or later. She’s still a big fan of the guy in the big red suit. Now, ask her if he brings presents she'll tell you, "Only one, but the rest are from mom and dad." Then there's little Audrey, she’s 6. Now Audrey…well, she and Santa go way back. (Too cute for words the way she tells her stories about Santa.) She’s all about decorating the tree, and making sure the milk and cookies are set out in perfect arrangement for Santa on his big day, and of course writing letters to the big guy as often as possible. With these little munchkins, you can count on one thing for sure, there’s always something about to unfold at the house, especially around the holidays. This story is a special one, this is about the first year for Katie's magical elf. As the grand-kids will later tell me, "Pappa, he came in his own little elf box, all decorated like a little house and everything!" There are even holes on the sides for him to breathe, cause ya know, ya gotta keep him comfortable and all. The house rules about the magic elf are simple. No one is allowed near the box, no touching, no looking, no poking, and most certainly no encouraging your sister into breaking the rules. (Gotta have that rule) So on the shelf this little house sat… waiting for the right time to make his entrance. All the kids understood the rules, and they all knew the story of the magical elf. The big fear of course wasn't mom, it was that little elf, and what he would say to Santa. Well, except of course for the nonbeliever. It was December 1st, and Katie was so busy preoccupied with putting up decorations she had completely forgotten about the little elf. She had to get him out of the box and into his mischief as soon as possible. Time for a plan, a plan that would distract those little all seeing, all knowing, and all hearing little ones long enough for her to accomplish her mission. She had an idea that just might work. Get the younger two interested in decorating cookies while nonbeliever was upstairs in her room. Then, she could pop the little guy out of his box and put him somewhere for the girls to discover later. The smell of fresh baked cookies filled the house as the two younger ones raced to the kitchen to help with the decorating. The elf "de-boxing" was well on its way. Katie crept out of the kitchen unnoticed while the two were busy adding sprinkles to everything and anything that was on or near the cookies. A quick peak up the stairs to make sure the non-believer was out of sight, OK good there. Time for the little elf to get out of his resting place. As she carefully opened the box she could hear tiny footsteps coming down the hallway. The rush was on, Mom can’t be caught with the box opened, there was no turning back now. Oh no.... what’s this???? The new little elf is wire tied into his little house!!! Quick, quick, untie him and get him out of there! The footsteps grew closer as the last wire tie came loose, then with a quick fling the elf went sailing through the air and landed in the branches of the Christmas tree. His head was buried amongst all the lights and ornaments with only his butt and legs exposed… undignified yes, but no harm, no foul… the game was on. Just as the tattle-teller (Kaitlyn) rounded the corner Katie put her mom face on. You know, that typical motherly look we all know from being on the other end of the situation. Then, using her best “mom” voice she tilted the elf's little box down to show her the empty box and said, “Kaitlyn have you been in this box? Where is the elf?” (Now that's some mom quick thinking) Kaitlyn was completely surprised, “No Mommy, I know I'm not supposed to touch it. It wasn’t me… honest…ah, ah, it was… ah, Audrey.” Of course by now, that mom voice brought the youngest one running into the room carrying a half-eaten cookie while leaving a long trail of sprinkles behind her. “Where’s the elf mommy?” she asked. Katie with that stern look still on her face said to her, “Did you open the box?” Audrey, now almost in tears thinking the little elf must have ran away, “No Mommy, where did he go?” Katie wasn’t about to let up on the Mommy thing just yet, but decided to soften the blow of their now missing elf and assure them it was perfectly alright. She said, “Well, it is December 1st, he's probably somewhere in the house.” About then the nonbeliever came down from her bedroom, “What’s going on?” Kaitlyn quickly told everything (as usual), “He got out, he’s in the house, and we’ve got to go find him! Come on, let’s go!” Now Kelsie, who didn’t seem so interested, is now very interested. But, she was going to logically explain the whole thing, even though she didn't believe in all of this "magic elf" stuff she knew mom had know idea either. You know, since mom and Kelsie are both older and more more mature, mom couldn't hide anything from her. With firm conviction, Kelsie said to them, “There’s no way he could have gotten out. He was strapped in there!” (That little sneak peeker!!) Clearly she had more interest in that little elf than she let on. Kelsie, being the oldest, took charge of the situation and told the other two, “You look over there, you go over there, and I’ll look over here.” Off went the three of them, running through the house in search of one small magical elf, while mom stood by the tree still clutching the empty box. They eventually found him and screamed with joy like the little girls they are. As for Kelsie, well, the non believer, she knew mom is really Santa after all, (the hand writing on the present tags and the way the packages are wrapped are exactly like her birthday presents and Santa doesn't bring birthday presents… sorry mom, she’s figured it out.). But, anything to do with that magic elf, just ask her, "Oh he’s real grandpa… he’s very real." There’s no doubt in my mind the magic of the season is for the kid in all of us, and sometimes all it takes is a little mischievous elf to bring out. Wishing you and your family (and your little magical elves) a Very Merry Christmas.
  13. Where’s That Machine? Even in this age of electronic gadgets, voice recognition systems, and cell phones, there are still a few things that require the dexterity of a human being. For some skilled and unskilled jobs the physical work or mental intuitiveness hasn’t been entirely replaced by machines, microprocessors and LED’s, just yet. Automotive diagnostics and repair is one of those fields. The modern mechanic is still very much a part of the repair equation. But, go to any repair shop in this country, and you’ll probably hear somebody at the service counter ask the service writer, “You guys do have one of those machines that tells you what’s wrong, don’t ya?” Yeah, we have one of those machines. It’s that guy in the service bay leaning over your car right now. You know, the mechanic. Oh, you know who they are. They’re usually the guy you spot in the elevator or at the supermarket who has more than a few grease spots on his clothes, scuffed up shoes, a pocket screwdriver, rough calloused hands, and wearing a shirt with his own name on it. He’s generally not a college graduate, probably doesn’t know the difference between Harvard and Yale, and probably doesn’t care either, but intelligent just the same. Yes, a machine all right. A walking, talking, hardworking, diagnostic and mechanically inclined individual who uses tools and equipment to solve your car problems. Look how the tools of the modern mechanic have changed over the years, such as scanners and meters. They are an aide, a machine, a tool if you will, but they don’t give out answers. Although, these tools can do so much in the way of diagnosing a problem in the hands of an expert mechanic. They show the technician a code or information in regards to the internal aspects of the vehicle. Code numbers and definitions are a strategic direction for the repair. This allows a trained technician to know which pathway to take in making the repair. To put it in other words: the real machine that finds out what’s wrong with your car is those two hands and brain of the very guy with his name imprinted on his shirt. Not some box of transistors and relays, but people still ask about and believe there is this magical mystery machine that does all the work. The automotive field isn’t what those reality TV shows portray it to be, either. Most of these shows highlight the automotive industry as a place for stupid, filthy, disorganized-knuckle dragging fools who can’t read or write, and wouldn't know a dentist office if they stumbled in one. It’s just one more reason why it’s so hard to find sharp, young talent to take up the trade. Car technology changes so fast these knuckle draggers can’t keep up with the true professional mechanic field and what goes on in a real repair facility, but for some reason somebody at these networks think reality shows of guys taking old non-computerized cars apart is what we want to watch on television. I for one would rather watch something useful like reflashing a GM than what it takes to weld in a new quarter panel. You want to get the next generation interested in the field…show em’ something of interest in the way of a modern computer driven vehicle. The vast number of computer systems, hydraulics, electrical, radar/navigation systems and mechanical aspects of the modern car are constantly changing. This means continual education is a must for the professional mechanic. A modern mechanic is more like a surgeon than a brick layer is to one. Even though both are considered laborer trades, one is more artistic in nature while the other is more technology driven. For some people, the mere thought that somebody out there knows more about their car than they do is quite disturbing to them. They seem to think they are far more intelligent than the engineers, designers, and the mechanics combined. In their interpretation of the automotive repair world, the mechanic has to be an idiot to even think they can make a living fixing this stuff when it’s just as easy to fix it yourself at home in the garage. I’ve been told more than once by an irate customer that it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to fix a car, so it shouldn’t cost that much. So, why would these types of people even want to talk with this guy who has his name tattooed on his shirt? Why not bypass him altogether and go right to the mechanized technical wonder they can’t seem to find at the local part store. You know, that machine. That thing-a-mabob that tells those dimwitted Neanderthal mechanics what part to change and how to make their car all better. As far as they are concerned, diagnostics are not needed, because following a path laid out in a diagnostic chart isn’t a skill that’s required when making a repair. Just read the results on the scanner, order the part, stick it on, and then get back to their own lives with as little interruption as possible. All they want to pay for is what they consider the main reason for going to the mechanic in the first place. You know, let them get greasy, change some widget and make their car run like new without costing them a fortune, and if it doesn’t… blame the mechanic, and not that dime store diagnostic machine they relied on. Where the idea of a machine that can answer every type of automotive problem by simply plugging it into the car is beyond me. I suppose, some of it comes from growing up with the TV and watching sci-fi shows, but reality doesn’t come across as real with a portion of the driving public. They’re still stuck with the notion that Mr. Spock will break out his Tri-corder and inform them about the composition of material making up their engine block, and the exact cause of their engine misfire. Seriously people, get a grip on reality. The idea that this perfect machine actually exists is simply absurd, but the mystery of it all still lingers in the minds of those tried and true believers of all this technical wizardry of which they don’t understand. In their minds that “machine” is real, and any mechanic that doesn’t know about one is a fool. In the near future, even this mythical, magical machine may actually be more fiction than myth. Telematics and remote diagnostics may make the vision of a “one machine can fix-all” far more real than we can imagine. Not that I believe there really will be a “fix-all” machine capable of re-gapping a worn out spark plug, but I do believe a lot of systems will be diagnosed, and possibly electronically repaired by remote intervention. Although, those tough diagnostics that can’t be sorted out will still require the skill of a good diagnostic mechanic to accomplish them. Maintenance and wearable item repairs will most likely be the commonplace activities at a repair shop in the future. Needless to say, the days of a home mechanic with a set of tools picked up at a garage sale may soon be a thing of the past or left up to the hobbyist working on antique vehicles. The modern technically advanced vehicle of the future may become too far advanced for anyone except for the skilled mechanic. We may be in a technically advanced computer age, and there’s no doubt there are further advancements to be made, but the trained mechanic is still a big part of the future. So, the next time someone asks, “Where’s that machine?” tell them it’s where it’s always been, in the service bay, and you’ve been talking to it all this time… your mechanic. View full article
  14. Where’s That Machine? Even in this age of electronic gadgets, voice recognition systems, and cell phones, there are still a few things that require the dexterity of a human being. For some skilled and unskilled jobs the physical work or mental intuitiveness hasn’t been entirely replaced by machines, microprocessors and LED’s, just yet. Automotive diagnostics and repair is one of those fields. The modern mechanic is still very much a part of the repair equation. But, go to any repair shop in this country, and you’ll probably hear somebody at the service counter ask the service writer, “You guys do have one of those machines that tells you what’s wrong, don’t ya?” Yeah, we have one of those machines. It’s that guy in the service bay leaning over your car right now. You know, the mechanic. Oh, you know who they are. They’re usually the guy you spot in the elevator or at the supermarket who has more than a few grease spots on his clothes, scuffed up shoes, a pocket screwdriver, rough calloused hands, and wearing a shirt with his own name on it. He’s generally not a college graduate, probably doesn’t know the difference between Harvard and Yale, and probably doesn’t care either, but intelligent just the same. Yes, a machine all right. A walking, talking, hardworking, diagnostic and mechanically inclined individual who uses tools and equipment to solve your car problems. Look how the tools of the modern mechanic have changed over the years, such as scanners and meters. They are an aide, a machine, a tool if you will, but they don’t give out answers. Although, these tools can do so much in the way of diagnosing a problem in the hands of an expert mechanic. They show the technician a code or information in regards to the internal aspects of the vehicle. Code numbers and definitions are a strategic direction for the repair. This allows a trained technician to know which pathway to take in making the repair. To put it in other words: the real machine that finds out what’s wrong with your car is those two hands and brain of the very guy with his name imprinted on his shirt. Not some box of transistors and relays, but people still ask about and believe there is this magical mystery machine that does all the work. The automotive field isn’t what those reality TV shows portray it to be, either. Most of these shows highlight the automotive industry as a place for stupid, filthy, disorganized-knuckle dragging fools who can’t read or write, and wouldn't know a dentist office if they stumbled in one. It’s just one more reason why it’s so hard to find sharp, young talent to take up the trade. Car technology changes so fast these knuckle draggers can’t keep up with the true professional mechanic field and what goes on in a real repair facility, but for some reason somebody at these networks think reality shows of guys taking old non-computerized cars apart is what we want to watch on television. I for one would rather watch something useful like reflashing a GM than what it takes to weld in a new quarter panel. You want to get the next generation interested in the field…show em’ something of interest in the way of a modern computer driven vehicle. The vast number of computer systems, hydraulics, electrical, radar/navigation systems and mechanical aspects of the modern car are constantly changing. This means continual education is a must for the professional mechanic. A modern mechanic is more like a surgeon than a brick layer is to one. Even though both are considered laborer trades, one is more artistic in nature while the other is more technology driven. For some people, the mere thought that somebody out there knows more about their car than they do is quite disturbing to them. They seem to think they are far more intelligent than the engineers, designers, and the mechanics combined. In their interpretation of the automotive repair world, the mechanic has to be an idiot to even think they can make a living fixing this stuff when it’s just as easy to fix it yourself at home in the garage. I’ve been told more than once by an irate customer that it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to fix a car, so it shouldn’t cost that much. So, why would these types of people even want to talk with this guy who has his name tattooed on his shirt? Why not bypass him altogether and go right to the mechanized technical wonder they can’t seem to find at the local part store. You know, that machine. That thing-a-mabob that tells those dimwitted Neanderthal mechanics what part to change and how to make their car all better. As far as they are concerned, diagnostics are not needed, because following a path laid out in a diagnostic chart isn’t a skill that’s required when making a repair. Just read the results on the scanner, order the part, stick it on, and then get back to their own lives with as little interruption as possible. All they want to pay for is what they consider the main reason for going to the mechanic in the first place. You know, let them get greasy, change some widget and make their car run like new without costing them a fortune, and if it doesn’t… blame the mechanic, and not that dime store diagnostic machine they relied on. Where the idea of a machine that can answer every type of automotive problem by simply plugging it into the car is beyond me. I suppose, some of it comes from growing up with the TV and watching sci-fi shows, but reality doesn’t come across as real with a portion of the driving public. They’re still stuck with the notion that Mr. Spock will break out his Tri-corder and inform them about the composition of material making up their engine block, and the exact cause of their engine misfire. Seriously people, get a grip on reality. The idea that this perfect machine actually exists is simply absurd, but the mystery of it all still lingers in the minds of those tried and true believers of all this technical wizardry of which they don’t understand. In their minds that “machine” is real, and any mechanic that doesn’t know about one is a fool. In the near future, even this mythical, magical machine may actually be more fiction than myth. Telematics and remote diagnostics may make the vision of a “one machine can fix-all” far more real than we can imagine. Not that I believe there really will be a “fix-all” machine capable of re-gapping a worn out spark plug, but I do believe a lot of systems will be diagnosed, and possibly electronically repaired by remote intervention. Although, those tough diagnostics that can’t be sorted out will still require the skill of a good diagnostic mechanic to accomplish them. Maintenance and wearable item repairs will most likely be the commonplace activities at a repair shop in the future. Needless to say, the days of a home mechanic with a set of tools picked up at a garage sale may soon be a thing of the past or left up to the hobbyist working on antique vehicles. The modern technically advanced vehicle of the future may become too far advanced for anyone except for the skilled mechanic. We may be in a technically advanced computer age, and there’s no doubt there are further advancements to be made, but the trained mechanic is still a big part of the future. So, the next time someone asks, “Where’s that machine?” tell them it’s where it’s always been, in the service bay, and you’ve been talking to it all this time… your mechanic.
  15. Two turkeys sitting on a fence. They look up and see a jet zipping by with it's after-burners on. The one turkey says to the other, "I'd fly that fast too, if my ass was on fire." HAPPY THANKSGIVING ! ! !


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