Episode 94: Less Talk, More Work

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we are talking about one of the main things that costs us money, that we’re not really willing to change: getting along with one another and talking about stuff. We prefer it when shops get along and can talk about stuff because a lot of the time it can streamlining the solving of problems and the maintenance of good morale. But sometimes it can end up costing us a lot of time, which can translate into costing us a good bit of money. However, absolutely nothing compares to the inconvenience of those part time friends that only show up when their car needs work!

Uncle Jimmy claims to be a friendly person despite 94 episodes of evidence to the contrary and describes his natural state: sweaty and angry.

This episode was distributed by The Wrenching Network. Whether you’re a technician, a mechanic, or someone who just loves the car scene, The Wrenching Network is a place that you have to check out. They have all sorts of great content, gear, and snacks to keep you turning wrenches in whatever capacity you do it. Also if you see us over there, make sure you say hi and leave a comment with what you think about the episode!

Episode 93: Technicians Vs Mechanics

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we are going deep into the debate between what we actually do for a living; are we technicians or mechanics? This is one of those things that comes down to two things: money and optics. According to Google, the difference lies in how we diagnose problems with cars: if you use a scan tool and then fix the problem, you’re a technician. If you don’t use a scan tool and fix the problem, you’re a mechanic. But what if you have a scan tool and can’t fix the problem, like the most people at chain auto parts stores? Moreover, is the term “mechanic,” when used by management, a tool to keep wages low? We go deep into all of this including a more comprehensive classification system for technicians because of the rapidly increasing level of insanity involved with modern cars quickly eroding the mechanic v. technician debate.

Also Uncle Jimmy describes his perfect Friday night watching new cars being put together, and evicts a mouse that ate roughly five times its body weight in wiring harness causing 26 faults.

This episode was distributed by The Wrenching Network. Whether you’re a technician, a mechanic, or someone who just loves the car scene, The Wrenching Network is a place that you have to check out. They have all sorts of great content, gear, and snacks to keep you turning wrenches in whatever capacity you do it. Also if you see us over there, make sure you say hi and leave a comment with what you think about the episode!

Episode 92: How To Be A Service Advisor

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are going over some of the core elements of what made this show popular: beating the snot out of service advisors! As you can probably guess, the revolving door is turning at Uncle Jimmy’s shop for service advisors and that is bringing all sorts of havoc, so buckle in. We go over in detail the job description of a service advisor, the lack of training, and the need for almost a farm system of sorts for service advisors to be able to get experience. Uncle Jimmy lays out all of the things that service advisors need to know to be successful in a high end shop such as his; including selling the value of the technicians in the building and knowing that once a customer brings their car to your shop that they have already waved the white flag on fixing it themselves. If you have a service advisor that could be selling more and helping you make more money, lock them in their office and turn this episode on full blast under the door. Then take the extra money you make and give a few bucks of it to our Patreon: patreon.com/greasethewheels

Also Uncle Jimmy channels the Lord God Almighty and Erik covers all of the shoutouts that we haven’t been doing a good job keeping up on at the end of the episode. This episode was distributed by TheWrenchingNetwork.com. Make sure you go over there and check out some of the awesome mechanics gear that they have over on their new website and when you see our posts over on the wrenching network, mechanics memes, or any of those great content spots- make sure you stop and comment!

Episode 91: Master Tech Roundtable – Dogtown, Austin TX

On this week’s (extra) episode of Grease the Wheels, Uncle Jimmy sits down with fellow BMW Master tech’s Kirk and Travis with their Nova Scotia Duck Tollers (Miley, Farley, and Shimmer) and about 30 beers. Absolutely nothing is off the table in this shop-talk-heavy episode: including the indy v. dealer debate, the physical and mental toll of the job, and the good, bad, and ugly of management. We also talk at length about the N63 V8 and some of the insane jobs we have to do to them regularly. Finally, we talk about the new guys and guys new to the industry, generational differences in the trades, and how being an old tech is like being an old running back in the NFL. If you have ever worked in the industry, this is a must listen episode full of some of the most relatable and hilarious banter you’ve ever heard. Also Kirk and Travis drive by their neighbor as he tries to fix his 760 with a V12, and it ends up at their shop a few days later.

Also Travis says “ethnicities” right after 6 beers, Kirk introduces new segments by opening a beer, and Uncle Jimmy blames accountants for all of society’s woes while planning out his summer.

Have some crazy stories like these? Want to hang out and drink beer with Uncle Jimmy while being on a podcast? Let us know at greasethewheelspodcast@gmail.com!

Episode 90: Nostalgia

On this week’s episode we are talking one of the most strange and complicated human emotions out there: nostalgia. Literally translated, it means a longing for something that once was and usually when we’re talking nostalgia we’re talking cars, people, and moments in time. We tend to have nostalgia for things that we are consumed by, and one of these things is work. Almost every single one of us has had more than one job, and even more of us will have another job in the future, but the weird thing with our industry is that more times than not we find ourselves back in places where we have been before. Literally. We have lost count of the number of times former employers have called us looking for help, but the important thing about nostalgia is that often it’s only the good things. Meaning, sometimes we forget all of the completely legitimate reasons we left in the first place!

Also Uncle Jimmy further breaks down the title of the podcast.

The Makes: Mercedes Benz (1945-Present)

On this Week’s Episode of GTW, it’s another episode of “The Makes” with Mercedes Benz. We start with the end of WWII (because we botched the first round of the Creation-WWII episode) and going right up to today. We are talking everything that makes Mercedes truly “the best or nothing” from their incredible rise from the ashes of a burned out Stuttgart to the highs of taking a Formula One world Championship just 10 years later. This dominance coming to a sudden and tragic end with the worst motorsport accident of all time, one that fundamentally changed not just motorsport but even manufacturers policies as well. We also go in depth into the great models of Mercedes Benz that took it from a symbol of evil to one of supreme style and class, as well as some of the incredible personalities that owned them (and some that brought some of that evil back into focus). Also we talk in depth about one of the great conspiracy theories that takes place in a Mercedes Benz inside of a tunnel in France in 1997. Finally, we talk about where they are now: their dominance in Formula One by bringing in some of the greatest racing minds in the world, their slightly bloated lineup full of crossovers, and their quiet maneuverings to possibly completely upset the EV market. Continue reading “The Makes: Mercedes Benz (1945-Present)”

Episode 89: Used Cars Revisited

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are talking used cars. This is a touchy subject for us because we have very concrete opinions on what happens, what should happen, and what is going to happen to that industry in the future. As automotive technicians, you and I should inspect every single car that every single person in this country buys. Preferably before they buy it, but most of the time after the purchase, which points to a level of ignorance that is costing people thousands of dollars. This is the ultimate cart before the horse scenario. This is a must listen if you are planning on buying a car online. Also we talk about all of the ways to tell if a used car has had its ass kicked by a previous owner.

Also, Uncle Jimmy seriously questions the viability of delivering freshly purchased used cars on a flatbed.

This episode was sponsored by Spoke and Dagger Co. Spoke and Dagger Co is Buffalo NY’s premier spot for motorcycle parts, apparel, and information. They have loads of information about how to work on your bike, and even a 6 week class on the basics of being a mechanic. Hit them up with what you ride and what parts you need and they will send it right to your door.

This episode is also sponsored by MechanicsMarketplace.com. Their intuitive iOS and Android applications make it easy for techs to find new work. They are only available in the United States right now, however they will be expanding into Canada later this year, so keep an eye out. There is no up front cost for shops to find new technicians and mechanics marketplace even handles the drug and background checks.

Episode 88: Shout Outs

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels we reach into the GTW vault and bust out an episode from our treasured past, late 2019. In this episode Uncle Jimmy talks about the great people he has worked with and calls out some of the complete morons. We call out some of our largest listenerships, and some of our segments that don’t even fix cars, they fix stuff that makes cars look small, well engineered and simple! Also, in a Nostradamus-esque twist, we talk about a virus of unknown origin coming from some of the rolling dumpsters that you all work on and post pictures of to the internet. We also talk about taking the show on the road, which may still be happening pending our imminent demise as a society from COVID-19.

Also Uncle Jimmy says “YOLO” for the first time in public record since at least 2014.

Episode 87: Collision

On this week’s episode of Grease the Wheels, we are talking about what happens after a customer hits something with their car. It seems that recently the trend is for the collision shops near us to get the car straight and send it down the road for whatever else it needs. And when it goes down the road, it almost always ends up in our shop. Folks, we’ve all been here. A customer brings in their car after a significant amount of collision work and don’t say anything, but we quickly find out that there are major problems and they are going to be without their car for even longer. We make no bones about it, working in the collision industry is very hard work. Good body people are getting fewer and more far between and the number of people entering the industry is even less than the amount who are becoming mechanics, if you can believe that!

Also Uncle Jimmy relishes in looking at cars that have been wrecked sitting out behind his shop, and asks for you all to send in the pictures of the wrecks that get hauled to your shop!

Episode 86: Corona Baby

On this week’s Grease the Wheels, you’re getting a little bit of everything as we actually delve into the COVID-19 madness taking a look at it from several angles. This includes large corporate shops, small indy shops, and some of the businesses that support the automotive industry. Also, we use the way-way-back machine to talk about what is going to happen once this pandemic is over in the automotive industry and the country at large.

More importantly we go over some of the best ways that tech’s are keeping themselves safe in this environment where they routinely have to work in a 4-wheeled petri dish. Most notably: steering wheel condoms, ziplock baggies over shifters, mats and seat covers, and if anyone has an idea on how not to touch the stop start button we are all ears!

Additionally, we talk about sourcing jobs for yourself in times of economic hardship using a website/app that we have been developing where people post their broken cars and you mechanics bid on fixing them. You do the repair, you collect the money. It’s called Surfwrench.

Also, Uncle Jimmy’s phone goes off and Erik the Producer stumbles into a post-apocalyptic cosplay convention. Uncle Jimmy pleads with tech’s with nothing better to do to NOT name their “corona babies” James or Erik.