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Old 12-31-2005, 08:53 PM
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Tip of the day #37

Something to consider the next time you install a weld on part. Scuff the inside areas before you install it. This goes for weld on core supports, aprons, quarter panels, rear panels, boxsides and basically any part that will need to be coated after the install. Sure you'll need to clean up the weld areas after it's welded on but it sure beats trying to scuff some of these nooks and crannies when it's installed. Most of the older car's quarter panels will need zolatone/speckle paint or body schutz and paint for a proper restoration and it makes good sense to epoxy these inner areas after the install, scuffing the panel's inside prior to installation makes prep a heck of alot easier. It's saved me some time over the years. Bob

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Old 01-01-2006, 05:19 AM
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Bob... Good subject to bring up. Where I work, when we replace a welde in core support, we go as far as painting it before welding it in. We, of course, have to grind away the paint that was just applied, in the areas that are welded, when we install it. The painter then comes back and touches those areas up. That way, the whole part is painted. There are alot of places that are hard, if not impossible to paint with the part on the car, and the drive train in there.

It does take some time to touch up the areas at the welds. It is however alot less work than painting the whole thing in the vehicle, around all of that other stuff. If it is a project that has the engine compartment empty, then painting the whole thing after installed is easier, but there are still places that are easilly missed. If the whole engine compartment is being painted, it would make sense to scuff it all before installing the replacement parts. The less parts in the way, the easier it is to work.

Aaron
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Old 01-01-2006, 09:27 AM
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Brian Martin,Freelance adviser
 
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Bob, if you want to get something completely painted, you have a great plan.

Arron, I have to tell you, from a production angle, that is a loser. You have hit on a nerve for me. I have screamed, begged, and gave up at the shop I work at to get them to stop doing just what you have described. It is a waste of time to paint that rad support twice, waste of time, that is all. Hell, half the time when they paint it off the car they don't get everywhere anyway!

First off, can you charge on the work order to paint it twice? No, of course not, you have a line for painting the radiator support, so the second time is costing the shop money.

Second point, you CAN charge to remove everything you need to paint it! THAT you can do, you charge to remove wiring, battery, air cleaner, rad, a/c cond., SRS sensors, etc. You charge to remove every single thing, NOW you can paint it one time, after welding AND get paid for your time.

Third point, the rad support you are cutting off wasn't completely painted from the factory! The whole underside is bare primer! Why, because it is unnessisary to paint something that isn't being seen, WHILE STILL being protected by the Ecoat. That is the point you can't miss. You are not cheating your customer if you don't paint under that upper tie bar, it is protected by the ecoat, JUST as it was on the original one.

Forth point, you CAN paint the whole darn thing, you set up a little pressure pot and a touch up gun and you can paint the whole thing anyway.

I wish I got a check for all the time we pay the prepers and painters to paint those rad supports twice, that would be a nice bonus.

Brian
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Old 01-01-2006, 11:04 AM
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Brian
I guess how things are done are different in every area. I personally like the whole part painted. We have a hard enough time getting paid by the insurance companies for what we do, specially under the hood. We also don't want anymore paint sprayed in the body shop than necessary. I guess we could disassemble everything, push the vehicle to the paint shop to have the support painted, push it back, then reassemble it. You are right that some areas are not painted from the factory. The customers that we have won't believe that. We have had cases where we have even shown them other cars, and they swear that they had been worked on, and had it done wrong. I don't claim to know everything, I was just stating how it is done in this area.

If I was doing one of mine at home, and was not striping the engine bay, I would paint it first. That is just my opinion.

Aaron
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Old 01-01-2006, 05:01 PM
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Aaron, I understand there are differences with how each state may even have different rules for insurance companies. I also understand how different markets may have different "allowances" just like hourly rates.

And I admit that I certainly know next to zero about how wide spread those differences may be.

I wonder if it comes down to the shops where you have worked just don't ask for their fair share. I know I never worked at a shop (including my own years ago) that got paid for EVERYTHING we do. "Every turn of the wrench" gets paid for.

Do you guys "try"? Do you write out of the "P" pages? We write into every RO things like removing the spare if it need to, battery, even cleaning up adhesive on the rare case replace a taped on moulding or emblem (3 tenths of an hour).

Could it be that you just don't ask?

Brian
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Old 01-01-2006, 06:27 PM
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I know there is one guy where I work that writes terrible estimates, I think many just to get the job since he works on commision. There was a truck that had alot of new metal added on to the frame and cargo rack and he had 4 hours to do the work and prep. The amount of masking alone to do it right and not have overspray would be very near that amount of time. Everyone gets pretty upset because it makes you look bad when the times are over the estimate. I bet quite a few places don't get paid for everything they do by the insurance companies. I see a lot of techs griping about times and how times for things are not written into the estimate. I use to read the autobody online forums which is more geared toward the collision side of things, and it was a common gripe along with insurance steering work to shops that would let them get away with cutting time or to shops they own.
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Old 01-01-2006, 09:44 PM
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MartinSR is right, you gotta charge for every operation that's not identified as an included operation for the part that's being replaced. When it is a repair on that part none of the R&I's are included so every R&I operation that needs to be performed needs to be on the estimate. Those .2, .3, .4, .5's add up to real dollars. The smarter$$ shops know and study the P-sheets. Bob

In a perfect world the Tech would get paid to drive the car in the shop, with the snow in my area this sometimes takes .5 to dig it out
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Old 01-02-2006, 07:39 AM
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Old 01-02-2006, 07:40 AM
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Martin i guess you never had a State Farm reinspector who looks under the tie bar and inside of rad support with a little mirror? We had one who was a total ***** and would deduct edge time from payment . Ever since then we would paint the parts first then go back and touch up after it was welded in. Our painter could never get paint up under the tie bar.He would go back after it was welded and brush it so it looked good for the 'mirror'
I have since bought a touch up gun that has a sidemounted cup that swivels so you can paint 100% upside down. I agree on the not getting paid twicw point you made BTW.
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Old 01-02-2006, 10:32 AM
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Shoddy, I have had mental cases that did things like they wanted me to get a print out to "prove" there were damaged suspension parts on a car that had a OBVIOUS visual -4 or so degree camber on one side and a 0 on the other. This wasn't policy, she was just being a jerk. Because this one adjuster did this, I didn't change my procedures for ever.

That State Farm adjuster with a mirror was a mental case, it doesn't mean it is the right way. Start looking under the original tie bars you cut off, they are not painted there. If you really want to "return to pre-accedent condition" you match the underhood colors, match seam sealer application, match overspray onto underhood colors with the outer color, etc.

We had a new guy the other day say he wasn't going put together a car because the paint shop had painted one side of the trunk gutter with the outside color, the rest was the semigloss "underhood" color from the factory. He was right, it looked like crap. But we have gotten so use to it, the other tech (including me) would have just put it together because we are tired of fighting about it with the paint dept.

But we have gotten WAY off track here.

For a home hobbiest wanting to do the best job possible, scuffing before is a great idea.

Brian
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Old 01-02-2006, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenseth17
I use to read the autobody online forums which is more geared toward the collision side of things, and it was a common gripe along with insurance steering work to shops that would let them get away with cutting time or to shops they own.
If you want to throw in the towel, maybe even swallow a gun, read those auto body owner "business" forums. I have never seen one that wasn't full of loosers crying about insurance companies and customers. Not only is the "glass half full", but what is there is toilet water. They remind me of myself when I had a shop and I would go get paint at the jobber and hang around with the other looser bodyshop owners (bodymen who thought they could run a business with no business education) crying that the sky was falling.

You want to learn about this business, join a business group or other groups of winners who see the glass as half full and find out a way to fill it. You don't need a college degree but some courses or seminars work wonders. At least you find out how much you don't know. You can't learn listening to guys complain.

Brian

Last edited by MARTINSR; 01-02-2006 at 09:22 PM.
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