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Old 12-02-2013, 06:40 PM   #1
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What would people like to see out of a local jeep shop (Colorado Springs) parts? Service?

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Old 12-02-2013, 07:21 PM   #2
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Reliable and reasonable service and fees. I've never been bothered by paying people to do work. What I don't like is paying a huge mark up on labor because it's a "4x4". My 8.8 was quoted at $2500+ from predator. I laughed and walked out. I ended up paying $1300'ish after mats.

Parts are cool but the truth is that 90% of what I've bought for my jeep has been online.

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Old 12-02-2013, 07:45 PM   #3
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I think what really separates shops is ability and customer service. In the end, of course, you need to be competitive especially in the days of the internet as Brian said but take a look at what people on this board have said about shops. It's either they know their stuff talked, talked me through everything, blah blah blah, or they suck, they can't do it, they over charge blah blah blah. If you are going to do it, which I wouldn't discourage, I would just have to say reputation and knowledge are what people are really looking for.

I've seen your work and it really does speak for itself and if you keep getting more Jeeps on the road then that rep will come.
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Old 12-02-2013, 11:24 PM   #4
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If I were starting a shop (and had the skill set you do), I'd keep some misc small inventory of the most common items (mid level cb radios, sliders, winches, aux lighting, sway bar discos, etc. items that aren't that expensive or specialized and most likely impulse/I want it now purchases that a quick buck could be made on with the install as margins are so low on 4x4 products.

That said, a friend of mine in Silverthorne started a mechanic shop. He has reasonable prices, is EXTREMELY honest, and very helpful to his clients. He did essentially zero advertising since he opened 3 years ago and cleared 6 figures his first year himself, hired a second mechanic and is into the 3xx,xxx range now. He wasn't ridiculously cheap, but didn't have obnoxious shop minimums. When I first took my range rover to him for an oil change, it took 3+ hours. I was super upset as I was killing time at target.... When they called me and I went back to his shop he had pulled all the diagnostic codes, gone over the entire vehicle..... He had my business from that point forward.... He's extremely thorough and takes the time to do things right, and double checks his work. I feel too many shops "get it done" and aren't concerned about it done right.... Now his lot is overflowing and works 15 hours a day. He hasn't gotten greedy or started cutting corners.

One experience I had with a shop in Frisco that rubbed me the wrong way was when I snapped a windshield bolt on my tj. I didn't have a snap on easy out nor any good place to source one in summit county. I called their shop and they said "no problem, come on down". 3 minutes later it was done.... My bill? 80.00 plus tax..... "Shop minimum" which they neglected to mention. I was disgusted.

Bottom line, solid work, following through on timelines, and having good prices are key. Look at Josh in parker with his regears and 8.8 swaps, He's cleaning house..... Does a good job is quick, and price can't be beat.... He is charging more now, but no one else is in the same ballpark..... He is working around the clock and probably making a lot of cash.... If you found a niche like that to cover the overhead at startup your kick ass suspension and fab work will be the icing on the cake.

Just my two cents. Good luck! I look forward to seeing more of your work posted soon!
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Old 12-03-2013, 04:25 AM   #5
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Knowledge- If there is a better way to do something that cost less or cost more, explain it to me. If we are not thinking about the long term effects or other factors to consider, tell me. I am willing to pay more for knowledge and quality. I also expect them to guarantee their work.


Communication and honesty- Here is a recent example. I took my husbands 96 Bronco in to get some work done on it while he is away. It had a long list of things that needed to be done to it. Ok, no problem. The repair shop has had it for 5 months and put a nice dent in the hood to top it off. I showed them pics of the Bronco a week prior to their shop with no dent. It is clear that a tool was still under the hood when the mechanic closed it up. The owner of the shop said he would replace the hood but, he assured me his shop wasn't responsible for the damage. I understand things happen but, come on. What gets me is I've had to call him numerous times to find out the statues of the Bronco. He said one week and here it's been over 5 months. Ridiculous!!!! Now I'm worried about the quality. I will not mention the shops name but, I will say it is a highly reputable shop in this area.


Time- I bought a locker at the 4x4 show in June for my Jeep. 4x4 parts told me my locker would be ready in 3 weeks. 3 months later and 3 different calls to them I still had nothing to show for my cash. I wanted to know what was taking them so long. I finally called Eaton directly to see what was going on and they flat out told me it could be 6 months before they ship the part out. Eaton said they were working on back orders for 6 months prior to mine. All the while 4x4 kept my money locked up and was giving me the run around. It should be in, in 3 weeks they kept saying. When I told them I was pulling out, they tried to sell me on a shit locker for the same price. I missed going out on some fun runs thanks to them. It's the one things I look forward to doing on the weekends and my time wasn't important to them. I ended up calling Jags and I had my locker in 3 days for the same price and was heading to BV to do some wheeling that weekend with you guys on Chinamen's. I had a sensor break on me so I ended up riding with Doug but, that's another story. It's a Jeep thing. Got to love it.
I wish you the best of luck.
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:54 AM   #6
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Thanks for the input guys and gals. Keep it coming. I am putting together a business plan and model. Since this is my target demographic I really want to be a place for the people.
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Old 12-03-2013, 09:09 AM   #7
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Good honest sales person. People who know what the hell they are doind and selling. Jeff at Tomken is a good example. They make and sell their own lift kits and accessories. Their stuff is great quality but not the most appealing in looks. The thing is they will install anything from any company. They install all lift kits and accessories from any company. He will tell you if what you are buying will serve you in your application. If it is overkill for your money he will let you know.

A little give. Like the mentioned a broken bolt. If it takes just a couple minutes to do be kind and call it advertising. They are going to ask you how much. Just say 10 or 20 bucks or say what ever you think. They will come back andnthey will tell others too. Now.thisndosent mean everyone gets this deeal but treat your customers like friends.

Now you just need to move to Buena Vista open a shopnand hire me as your sales person. Oh and I know of a shop that is for rent too. Best of luck
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Old 12-03-2013, 01:18 PM   #8
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In the Colorado Springs area I have be desperate for knowledgeable and competitive shop. Take a lifted/modified jeep to many mechanics and they just don't understand that it can't be treated like any other vehicle. In many instances (especially with the suspension) you shouldn't replace parts with OEM or other stock after market parts. I ran into several mechanics, including a dealer who did not understand how to correct my death wobble problem.

Finally took it to Predator and they fixed it with no problem because they understood lifted jeeps. That brings me to the second part. Competitive. I agree that Predator charges at the higher end for their work. But, I have to hand it to them. They fixed the problem that 3 other mechanics couldn't.

I also appreciate someone who would repair my jeep as if it was theirs. Not a place just looking to turn over a customer with a quick hack job and move on to the next. This means deal in and use parts that you would also use on your own.

Lastly, after by chance driving past your rig at your place of employment and seeing your work on here, I have been waiting for you to take this step. I would trust you with my Jeep.

For being in Colorado and a city of this size, we are lacking in this area. We have one shop that is part of a larger corporate conglomerate that really doesn't care about it's customers, a couple more shops that don't do quality work (look at the jeeps they drive. I know it may be a rock crawler but why does it look like has been though the apocalypse? The pride you take in your work is reflected in your own vehicle.) and a fourth shop that seems to do quality work but my wallet feels violated when I leave.
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Old 12-03-2013, 06:35 PM   #9
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Re-read your original post. Parts are not a big deal for me. With the internet, I have a giant bin full of parts and accessories at my fingertips. Now, for service, I would hope that you would encourage and have access to a full range of higher end/heavy duty parts as the job requires. When certain parts wear out and/or break, just going down to the local Napa may not be the best solution.
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Old 12-03-2013, 07:45 PM   #10
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I think seeing the owners beast of a Jeep would assure me he knows what he's doing. I hope you open one Dan :-D
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:33 PM   #11
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Keep a nice cold keg in the corner of the shop for people while they wait

Also free hugs with every purchase
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Old 12-03-2013, 08:36 PM   #12
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Matt, the keg is off limits to anyone but you. You will need it to be the hug ambassador. So you going to let me at that brand new 2 dr rubicon?
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Old 12-03-2013, 09:53 PM   #13
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Make a jig and start building up bolt in 1 tons for the jks....... A pile of 60's and 14 bolts would likely go fast! Especially considering the price on the pro rock and dynatrac options which seem to be selling extremely well despite the price.

Are you looking at fab work, or case by case builds as your goal? What would you like to see your shop do/specialize in?
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Old 12-03-2013, 09:59 PM   #14
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It is still in the idea stage. But the shop would start with just basic jeep stuff. Optimizing all ready built rigs, repair and upgrade jeeps, lifts, wheel and tires. welding for the do it yourselfers. Basically what I do now but in a full time basis. If I get it going and running well with a good reputation I would like to spend more time doing fabrication and parts manufacturing.
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Old 12-03-2013, 10:12 PM   #15
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Sounds like it'll be a great place to take my jeep. You going to stay here in the Springs?
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Old 12-03-2013, 10:34 PM   #16
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Ya, the springs needs some options
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Old 12-03-2013, 10:41 PM   #17
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Yes it definitely does.
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Old 12-03-2013, 11:47 PM   #18
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After seeing your work id love to come learn from you. I've learned quite a bit at school and from this forum but to learn from you would be awesome. With that being said from what I remember of 4x4 shops in the springs they're either unfriendly and dont care about the customer, highly priced, or both. If you rectify those two problems alone I think you would make a killing. I would stock basic bolt ons, tires, rims, bumpers, and wearable items like shocks, brakes, etc.
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:04 AM   #19
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For me the biggest factors are knowledge and communication. Price is price and would need to be competitive however price isn't everything. This is true in any parts/service situation. I will choose a place based on all factors and price is a part but I'd rather give my hard earned money to someone who is knowledgeable and takes the time to communicate over some one who is cheaper.

Also a big thing for me personally is how the customer (me) is treated. I have walked in and out of places where I was treated like an idiot when I was just uninformed. If I ask a question and I am off base just take a few seconds and explain we are all new to different things at one point in time and if you treat a "newbie" right they could easily be a customer for a long time.

My 2 cents
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:08 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by wanderlust View Post
Matt, the keg is off limits to anyone but you. You will need it to be the hug ambassador. So you going to let me at that brand new 2 dr rubicon?
Oh ya I want to start building it as soon as I get back to Colorado

BTW if this idea comes to fruition it will be awesome plus you'll be getting paid for what you do for a hobby, can't get much better then that
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:11 PM   #21
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Oh ya I want to start building it as soon as I get back to Colorado BTW if this idea comes to fruition it will be awesome plus you'll be getting paid for what you do for a hobby, can't get much better then that
And regarding the keg, you know I'm a boxed wine kinda guy
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:24 PM   #22
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You classy guy you
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Old 12-04-2013, 03:02 PM   #23
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What's with the hate on boxed wine!
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Old 12-04-2013, 03:08 PM   #24
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Why not get bottled wine? Boxed less expensive? I would have no clue.
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Old 12-04-2013, 03:29 PM   #25
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Guys, it is a long sloppy story
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Old 12-04-2013, 03:55 PM   #26
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It happens to the best of us Dan. "I was drunk and needed the money..."
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Old 12-04-2013, 06:51 PM   #27
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Dan the other advantage you have is the ability to show people some jeeps that you have built and potentially take them with you on a test/trial run. I know most of the people you have built rigs for would be willing to do that to for a prospective client, which gives new offroad enthusiasts the ability to see what their money can buy them.
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Old 12-05-2013, 02:00 PM   #28
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I really want to create a community place, run by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.
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Old 12-05-2013, 02:14 PM   #29
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If money insurance and space permits have a open bay or two that people can rent by the hour and work on their own rigs after taking a basic skills test and signing a release.
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Old 12-05-2013, 08:07 PM   #30
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I really want to create a community place, run by enthusiasts for enthusiasts.
One thing cool about Pete Bach's shop is he organizes and leads trail runs for his customers
I'm sure a monthly run up eagle rock for the new jeep owners would pay dividends... Especially if you get them to break something

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