Tractor Mike - Skills lost

Daren Todd

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I don’t think it’s a skilled labor problem. It’s a labor issue period. No, not all of the younguns refuse to work. But, there are a lot that have been encouraged to seek avenues that make no sense at all. We can have only so many liberal arts majors who think they deserve high wages.

Then, there are those who happened to pick a technical degree. Even those seem to have an issue with working for high wages. No, not all.

Parents and schools should focus on helping kids figure out how they will make a living at something they like to do, and skip the they are entitled because they are are great people and need a fantastic work/life balance to get ahead in life. Work/life balance is a joke unless you are ok with never being exceptional at work. That’s ok if you don’t. Everything is a balance.

The country wasn’t built by minimum wage workers who barely will work 40 hrs a week. My dad and mom were blue collar who frequently worked overtime. I graduated from college, but working harder than the majority and being responsible helped me retire early.
I thought it was a requirement for a barrista to have a liberal arts degree 🤔🤔🤔
 
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HVACRoger

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Participation of the young people today in the areas in this discussion are frightful. In my continuing education credit hours classes, required by State of North Carolina to renew electrical license, they say the average age of license electrician in NC is 58.
 
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Nicksacco

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Ya'lls quotes are priceless!

How many times I've said; "if only I knew then what I know now"? I think the hardest part of getting older is still having a 20 year old mind that wants to GO! Whooo! I know about those daily new aches and pains! A day of shop time usually requires some Advil candy and a hot soak afterwards - but it's better than the stress dealing with a failed computer system at 3AM, or a micro-manager boss.

Being retired allows me the opportunity to try all kinds of new things, meet new people and continue to learn. I wouldn't trade that. Have you ever looked back and thought; "Hmmmm, I wonder if I should have been a jet mechanic, or carpenter, or diesel technician, or..."? Not in a bad way, but kind of fun to think about.

Tech has given us new ways to solve a problem but I'm not sure it's taught anyone actual problem solving. Or that it's ok to go "off script" to deal with an issue. Perhaps thank litigation for that one.

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lugbolt

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we live in unprecedented times for sure.

Mike is right on most all points.

dealer techs are getting hard to find. VERY hard. I've been looking for over a year now for an experienced Polaris tech. Start pay for the right guy or gal is gonna be in the $60,000 range. When I started tractor fixing in 1992 I made under $5000.

Tractor repair sucks. It's outside. It's hot in the summer cold in the winter heavy hard work. Customers don't wait. They cuss you, dis you, jerk your chain, manipulate you, talk nice to you and 5 minutes later behind your back you're their enemy. Your work is rarely appreciated, always too expensive, never fast enough. The dealers don't always schedule the work very well either so backlogs are long and for farming and construction companies, backlogs are unacceptable for them as it costs them. Tractor shops are dirty, full of crap (honestly and literally full of crap...horse, cow, pig, whatever).

Yes you can make some money in tractor mechanic'n. BUT can you put up with all the garbage that goes with it?

Labor rates keep going up and they have to. The more it costs to run the shop or business the more the labor rate keeps going up. The more it costs to fix your stuff the more people shop around. In our area there are other places that work on tractors and people often go to them. But they aren't all dealerships with factory-trained techs. Many keep saying labor rates don't need to be that high ($100 an hour+) and until you have to run a shop, you don't realize how much the shop doesn't make. $100/hr is cheap now. Dealer I work at is $130/hr. Yes that cost runs a few customers off but they almost always come back at some point. Let's say you wanted to start a tractor repair shop (independent). Just to start, you will need everything mike said. Tools are a huge cost. You can easily and quickly drop $100,000 in tools alone, and you're still gonna find times when you don't have them all. You need computer skills and you need old-school skills. And on that subject alone, dealers need to look at hiring techs that have good computer skills. Well.....if I had good computer skills, do you think I'd be "wanting" to work outside in the heat/cold/sweat/shivering on machinery that is full of crap? Or in a climate-controlled office sitting on my backside? The latter is much more attractive, and the pay for the latter is also better (usually).

benefits. Dealers have a benefit package that isn't competitive. Especially small dealers. GENERALLY speaking larger corporate dealers have better benefit package for employees. That hurts new hires. But a great bennie package costs a lot.

Dealers want master techs. The training to get to that point is grueling! My old coworker (kubota dealer) called the other day and talked about how he has to go to 9 different instructor-led training places , and they are all over the country. It sucks. I've been through it. It used to be that Kubota would do a training "module" in each state, or for small states like in the NE USA, they'd have one in one state that many others could attend. They don't do that anymore because "it costs a lot to train". However it also costs a lot to send people across the country for 3-10 days for training, plus it also contributes to early burnout-which is what happened to me. Everyone's situation is different, but I live by myself and I stay very busy at the house, so going away for more than a couple days is mostly out of the question. I had to do it a few times and each time I had to hire someone to be a caretaker, and it couldn't be just anyone. The one time, I get a call on day #3 that she went in to check on the cat, and opened the door to a floor that was under about an inch of water. Toilet line busted. Wasn't anything I could do but tell the water company to shut the water off. It sat there for another 7 days before I could get in there. Ruined all the floors, sheetrock, just tons and tons of damage and there is still some damage that hasn't been "fixed" (insurance deal...)--that's just one of many things that those classes take you away from. Then, they send you to timbuktu and pay you for 8 hours. They don't pay you for the other 16 hours, even though you ARE on THEIR clock, you can't do anything after 5pm (usually) in the winter, so you go back to a cheap crappy motel room and sit there, or some run down to the local bar and drink until they're passed out. It's no vacation at all, it's work, and they need to be paying you to work. I only got reimbursed for mileage to and from dealer to training center, not the drive time it took (upwards of 9-14 hours depending where I had to go) and they pay based on milage, $0.50 a mile at the time which doesn't cover fuel expenses in my vehicle and I can't drive company vehicle because it's a pile of junk. Yeah just the training alone, chaps my backside and Kubota needs to really look at it again. Their training isn't really "training" either, it's an hour of classroom instruction and introduction and then 6 hours of standing around the shop while someone else does stuff that doesn't even pertain to everyday work that a tech would see. On the excavator stuff you need to be a hydraulic engineer to figure them out and I ain't that and neither are a lot of people. So a dealer needs to look at that too when hiring.

it's a snowball, and finally I'm glad someone other'n myself said all of it. Tractor Mike is right on all of his points. Same things I've been trying to tell y'all for years.
 
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GreensvilleJay

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BX23-S
Apr 2, 2019
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Part of the problem has been the move from quality products to 'use once,throw away' items. It's hard to find ANY catagory of 'thing', that isn't really JUNK. Due to slick marketting, cheaply made items aren't worth repairing. Anyone here actually FIX their cellphone , TV, kitchen appliances, furnace, car, tools,furniture ?
Since 99.44% of this 'stuff' is so cheap, virtually NONE of it gets repaired, so no one knows HOW to repair it....the 'Mr. Fixit's of the World will be gone way of the dinosaurs......
yup, I'm one of them..even have a Snap-On Alternator tester to prove it....
 
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skeets

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85,,, A good shop teacher is like gold inthe hand, sad thing at least around here is home ec and shop classes have all gone away. All the shop equipment was sold off along with home ec, and forget about drivers ed. And the few rifle teams that are left are in very real jeopardy of being done away with. Not that they couldnt find active students for those activities, just the school boards cant be bothered by such trivial things. And who looses, not the school board, but the kids
 
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fried1765

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Nov 14, 2019
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85,,, A good shop teacher is like gold inthe hand, sad thing at least around here is home ec and shop classes have all gone away. All the shop equipment was sold off along with home ec, and forget about drivers ed. And the few rifle teams that are left are in very real jeopardy of being done away with. Not that they couldnt find active students for those activities, just the school boards cant be bothered by such trivial things. And who looses, not the school board, but the kids
Great memories of my college rifle team.
Wondering if there actually are any remaining.
 

ACDII

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B2410, L352 Loader, Woods BH70-X backhoe
Oct 21, 2021
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Why fix something when you can throw it away and buy a new one? Remember back when you could take the tubes out of your TV and test them to find out which one needs to be replaced so your can watch it? Today when it dies, they toss it out and get a bigger fancier one.

When Computers first became a thing you had to have them built, and they were easy upgrades, and there were places you could go to have them fixed. Today everything is laptops and tablets and fixed parts, you no longer upgrade things, you toss and replace.

Can't build a house with your thumbs, unless its on MineCraft. Physical work? Whats that? Ask Mike Rowe about it and he will say what we say, Get off your ass and LEARN SOME SKILLS!

On a side rant, I watch Dr John Campbell, who has a Utub channel and he discusses the Covid stuff. He has been very informative when it comes to the Omicron and pretty much said after the first week it hit SA that we are all going to get it, we are all going to get sick, and we all are going to become immune after that. He was right. He also said that the reason the US Hospital rates are so high and why the deaths were so high is because Americans are Fat and Lazy, not in those words, but he is again RIGHT! Obesity is running rampant here because we sit around in front of TV and Computers all day, or heads buried in their smart phones instead of getting out and exercising, or going out to play like we did when we were kids.

That movie Wall-E isn't too far from the truth, at this rate we will all be stuck in floating chairs stuck in our own little worlds and too fat to move.

I have spoken
 
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HVACRoger

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2021 L2501 Loader, Backhoe, LandPride Grapple, Tiller, Forks, Quick Connect
Dec 20, 2021
174
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Wilson, NC
we live in unprecedented times for sure.

Mike is right on most all points.

dealer techs are getting hard to find. VERY hard. I've been looking for over a year now for an experienced Polaris tech. Start pay for the right guy or gal is gonna be in the $60,000 range. When I started tractor fixing in 1992 I made under $5000.

Tractor repair sucks. It's outside. It's hot in the summer cold in the winter heavy hard work. Customers don't wait. They cuss you, dis you, jerk your chain, manipulate you, talk nice to you and 5 minutes later behind your back you're their enemy. Your work is rarely appreciated, always too expensive, never fast enough. The dealers don't always schedule the work very well either so backlogs are long and for farming and construction companies, backlogs are unacceptable for them as it costs them. Tractor shops are dirty, full of crap (honestly and literally full of crap...horse, cow, pig, whatever).

Yes you can make some money in tractor mechanic'n. BUT can you put up with all the garbage that goes with it?

Labor rates keep going up and they have to. The more it costs to run the shop or business the more the labor rate keeps going up. The more it costs to fix your stuff the more people shop around. In our area there are other places that work on tractors and people often go to them. But they aren't all dealerships with factory-trained techs. Many keep saying labor rates don't need to be that high ($100 an hour+) and until you have to run a shop, you don't realize how much the shop doesn't make. $100/hr is cheap now. Dealer I work at is $130/hr. Yes that cost runs a few customers off but they almost always come back at some point. Let's say you wanted to start a tractor repair shop (independent). Just to start, you will need everything mike said. Tools are a huge cost. You can easily and quickly drop $100,000 in tools alone, and you're still gonna find times when you don't have them all. You need computer skills and you need old-school skills. And on that subject alone, dealers need to look at hiring techs that have good computer skills. Well.....if I had good computer skills, do you think I'd be "wanting" to work outside in the heat/cold/sweat/shivering on machinery that is full of crap? Or in a climate-controlled office sitting on my backside? The latter is much more attractive, and the pay for the latter is also better (usually).

benefits. Dealers have a benefit package that isn't competitive. Especially small dealers. GENERALLY speaking larger corporate dealers have better benefit package for employees. That hurts new hires. But a great bennie package costs a lot.

Dealers want master techs. The training to get to that point is grueling! My old coworker (kubota dealer) called the other day and talked about how he has to go to 9 different instructor-led training places , and they are all over the country. It sucks. I've been through it. It used to be that Kubota would do a training "module" in each state, or for small states like in the NE USA, they'd have one in one state that many others could attend. They don't do that anymore because "it costs a lot to train". However it also costs a lot to send people across the country for 3-10 days for training, plus it also contributes to early burnout-which is what happened to me. Everyone's situation is different, but I live by myself and I stay very busy at the house, so going away for more than a couple days is mostly out of the question. I had to do it a few times and each time I had to hire someone to be a caretaker, and it couldn't be just anyone. The one time, I get a call on day #3 that she went in to check on the cat, and opened the door to a floor that was under about an inch of water. Toilet line busted. Wasn't anything I could do but tell the water company to shut the water off. It sat there for another 7 days before I could get in there. Ruined all the floors, sheetrock, just tons and tons of damage and there is still some damage that hasn't been "fixed" (insurance deal...)--that's just one of many things that those classes take you away from. Then, they send you to timbuktu and pay you for 8 hours. They don't pay you for the other 16 hours, even though you ARE on THEIR clock, you can't do anything after 5pm (usually) in the winter, so you go back to a cheap crappy motel room and sit there, or some run down to the local bar and drink until they're passed out. It's no vacation at all, it's work, and they need to be paying you to work. I only got reimbursed for mileage to and from dealer to training center, not the drive time it took (upwards of 9-14 hours depending where I had to go) and they pay based on milage, $0.50 a mile at the time which doesn't cover fuel expenses in my vehicle and I can't drive company vehicle because it's a pile of junk. Yeah just the training alone, chaps my backside and Kubota needs to really look at it again. Their training isn't really "training" either, it's an hour of classroom instruction and introduction and then 6 hours of standing around the shop while someone else does stuff that doesn't even pertain to everyday work that a tech would see. On the excavator stuff you need to be a hydraulic engineer to figure them out and I ain't that and neither are a lot of people. So a dealer needs to look at that too when hiring.

it's a snowball, and finally I'm glad someone other'n myself said all of it. Tractor Mike is right on all of his points. Same things I've been trying to tell y'all for years.
AMEN BROTHER!! Preaching to the choir here!! Schools across this nation, some do, should have a required class where students must start a business, show the complexity of startup, possible governing laws ie permits, trade licenses, privilege license, expenses for sites locations or web cost, etc.., etc...
It could inspire more Entrepreneurs or at least give them a respect for the people that employ them. I know, now I'm preaching to the choir!!
 

GeoHorn

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This thread reminds me of the battery-powered grease-gun thread.

The complaint being that technology has produced a generation of people who cannot repair their stuff because their stuff is too “technological” for average hammer-and-screwdriver repairs….
….but then those complainers are the very ones who cannot pump a lever on a grease-gun and instead have to pull a trigger on a solid-state-battery-charger-powered-rare-earth/lithium-battery they cannot buy at the local store nor manufacture at home. How are they gonna get that electonically-controlled-DPF-restricted-hydrostatically-moved tractor out of the garage so the wife can get the SUV out and down to the private-charter-school to pick up the kids and get them to soccer practice?

Solution: Simplify your life and enjoy the short time you have here on Earth with your family and play with your kids yourself instead of sending them off for others to shout at them how they should play.
 
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HVACRoger

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2021 L2501 Loader, Backhoe, LandPride Grapple, Tiller, Forks, Quick Connect
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Wilson, NC
This thread reminds me of the battery-powered grease-gun thread.

The complaint being that technology has produced a generation of people who cannot repair their stuff because their stuff is too “technological” for average hammer-and-screwdriver repairs….
….but then those complainers are the very ones who cannot pump a lever on a grease-gun and instead have to pull a trigger on a solid-state-battery-charger-powered-rare-earth/lithium-battery they cannot buy at the local store nor manufacture at home. How are they gonna get that electonically-controlled-DPF-restricted-hydrostatically-moved tractor out of the garage so the wife can get the SUV out and down to the private-charter-school to pick up the kids and get them to soccer practice?

Solution: Simplify your life and enjoy the short time you have here on Earth with your family and play with your kids yourself instead of sending them off for others to shout at them how they should play.
Dang, I just got one of those DeWalt battery powered grease guns for a birthday gift from my kids. They gave it to me since I have my Kubota now, very thoughtful gift. Man, that thing is bulky and heavy as heck. I'm finding it burdensome to get it when my old grease gun is so light and small.
 
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GeoHorn

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we live in unprecedented times for sure.

Mike is right on most all points.

dealer techs are getting hard to find. VERY hard. I've been looking for over a year now for an experienced Polaris tech. Start pay for the right guy or gal is gonna be in the $60,000 range. When I started tractor fixing in 1992 I made under $5000.

Tractor repair sucks. It's outside. It's hot in the summer cold in the winter heavy hard work. Customers don't wait. They cuss you, dis you, jerk your chain, manipulate you, talk nice to you and 5 minutes later behind your back you're their enemy. Your work is rarely appreciated, always too expensive, never fast enough. The dealers don't always schedule the work very well either so backlogs are long and for farming and construction companies, backlogs are unacceptable for them as it costs them. Tractor shops are dirty, full of crap (honestly and literally full of crap...horse, cow, pig, whatever).

Yes you can make some money in tractor mechanic'n. BUT can you put up with all the garbage that goes with it?

Labor rates keep going up and they have to. The more it costs to run the shop or business the more the labor rate keeps going up. The more it costs to fix your stuff the more people shop around. In our area there are other places that work on tractors and people often go to them. But they aren't all dealerships with factory-trained techs. Many keep saying labor rates don't need to be that high ($100 an hour+) and until you have to run a shop, you don't realize how much the shop doesn't make. $100/hr is cheap now. Dealer I work at is $130/hr. Yes that cost runs a few customers off but they almost always come back at some point. Let's say you wanted to start a tractor repair shop (independent). Just to start, you will need everything mike said. Tools are a huge cost. You can easily and quickly drop $100,000 in tools alone, and you're still gonna find times when you don't have them all. You need computer skills and you need old-school skills. And on that subject alone, dealers need to look at hiring techs that have good computer skills. Well.....if I had good computer skills, do you think I'd be "wanting" to work outside in the heat/cold/sweat/shivering on machinery that is full of crap? Or in a climate-controlled office sitting on my backside? The latter is much more attractive, and the pay for the latter is also better (usually).

benefits. Dealers have a benefit package that isn't competitive. Especially small dealers. GENERALLY speaking larger corporate dealers have better benefit package for employees. That hurts new hires. But a great bennie package costs a lot.

Dealers want master techs. The training to get to that point is grueling! My old coworker (kubota dealer) called the other day and talked about how he has to go to 9 different instructor-led training places , and they are all over the country. It sucks. I've been through it. It used to be that Kubota would do a training "module" in each state, or for small states like in the NE USA, they'd have one in one state that many others could attend. They don't do that anymore because "it costs a lot to train". However it also costs a lot to send people across the country for 3-10 days for training, plus it also contributes to early burnout-which is what happened to me. Everyone's situation is different, but I live by myself and I stay very busy at the house, so going away for more than a couple days is mostly out of the question. I had to do it a few times and each time I had to hire someone to be a caretaker, and it couldn't be just anyone. The one time, I get a call on day #3 that she went in to check on the cat, and opened the door to a floor that was under about an inch of water. Toilet line busted. Wasn't anything I could do but tell the water company to shut the water off. It sat there for another 7 days before I could get in there. Ruined all the floors, sheetrock, just tons and tons of damage and there is still some damage that hasn't been "fixed" (insurance deal...)--that's just one of many things that those classes take you away from. Then, they send you to timbuktu and pay you for 8 hours. They don't pay you for the other 16 hours, even though you ARE on THEIR clock, you can't do anything after 5pm (usually) in the winter, so you go back to a cheap crappy motel room and sit there, or some run down to the local bar and drink until they're passed out. It's no vacation at all, it's work, and they need to be paying you to work. I only got reimbursed for mileage to and from dealer to training center, not the drive time it took (upwards of 9-14 hours depending where I had to go) and they pay based on milage, $0.50 a mile at the time which doesn't cover fuel expenses in my vehicle and I can't drive company vehicle because it's a pile of junk. Yeah just the training alone, chaps my backside and Kubota needs to really look at it again. Their training isn't really "training" either, it's an hour of classroom instruction and introduction and then 6 hours of standing around the shop while someone else does stuff that doesn't even pertain to everyday work that a tech would see. On the excavator stuff you need to be a hydraulic engineer to figure them out and I ain't that and neither are a lot of people. So a dealer needs to look at that too when hiring.

it's a snowball, and finally I'm glad someone other'n myself said all of it. Tractor Mike is right on all of his points. Same things I've been trying to tell y'all for years.
In MY profession (the last 40+-year one of my life) …I had to undergo “recurrent training” on a regular basis…at LEAST annually. Yes…sometimes it was boring and required me to be away from home and family to attend a class and listen to an instructor (who often had less experience in the field than most of the class)…. And Yes…it prompted a Lot of complaining just like you expressed lugbolt…

… One day while walking back to the out-of-town classroom from a coffee-break…I verbally complained to another co-worker who was also forced to attend the class…
I remarked, “This kind of B.S. re-training really chaps my azz!…I”ve got Lots of things I’d rather be doing than THIS!”

My co-worker glanced over at me as we walked and said, “Are you being PAID?”

”Huh..?, “ I responded.

”I said“, he continued….”Are you BEING PAID? (to attend this training.)”

Thoughtful Moment on my part…….:unsure:

(the point being that as part and parcel of my job-description and pay-scale I was actually doing what my employer and regulations REQUIRED of me…and THEY were paying for the training…AND…paying ME to be there!)

After a moment I replied to him,….. “I see your point. Thanks.”
 
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Daren Todd

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Lifetime Member

Equipment
Z121S Zero turn mower
May 18, 2014
7,082
1,085
113
Conway, Arkansas
This thread reminds me of the battery-powered grease-gun thread.

The complaint being that technology has produced a generation of people who cannot repair their stuff because their stuff is too “technological” for average hammer-and-screwdriver repairs….
….but then those complainers are the very ones who cannot pump a lever on a grease-gun and instead have to pull a trigger on a solid-state-battery-charger-powered-rare-earth/lithium-battery they cannot buy at the local store nor manufacture at home. How are they gonna get that electonically-controlled-DPF-restricted-hydrostatically-moved tractor out of the garage so the wife can get the SUV out and down to the private-charter-school to pick up the kids and get them to soccer practice?

Solution: Simplify your life and enjoy the short time you have here on Earth with your family and play with your kids yourself instead of sending them off for others to shout at them how they should play.
Well..... I'm one of those people that owns a pneumatic grease gun. I can pump the manual one I own. But when your tucked in a weird position underneath the back axle of a semi trailer greasing air brake joints, needing one arm to hold the gun and can't get to the handle with your other arm, squeezing a button makes a lot of sense 😉😉😉😉

And a lock and lube is a game changer👍👍👍👍👍👍
 
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fried1765

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Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
1,144
804
113
Eastham, Ma
we live in unprecedented times for sure.

Mike is right on most all points.

dealer techs are getting hard to find. VERY hard. I've been looking for over a year now for an experienced Polaris tech. Start pay for the right guy or gal is gonna be in the $60,000 range. When I started tractor fixing in 1992 I made under $5000.

Tractor repair sucks. It's outside. It's hot in the summer cold in the winter heavy hard work. Customers don't wait. They cuss you, dis you, jerk your chain, manipulate you, talk nice to you and 5 minutes later behind your back you're their enemy. Your work is rarely appreciated, always too expensive, never fast enough. The dealers don't always schedule the work very well either so backlogs are long and for farming and construction companies, backlogs are unacceptable for them as it costs them. Tractor shops are dirty, full of crap (honestly and literally full of crap...horse, cow, pig, whatever).

Yes you can make some money in tractor mechanic'n. BUT can you put up with all the garbage that goes with it?

Labor rates keep going up and they have to. The more it costs to run the shop or business the more the labor rate keeps going up. The more it costs to fix your stuff the more people shop around. In our area there are other places that work on tractors and people often go to them. But they aren't all dealerships with factory-trained techs. Many keep saying labor rates don't need to be that high ($100 an hour+) and until you have to run a shop, you don't realize how much the shop doesn't make. $100/hr is cheap now. Dealer I work at is $130/hr. Yes that cost runs a few customers off but they almost always come back at some point. Let's say you wanted to start a tractor repair shop (independent). Just to start, you will need everything mike said. Tools are a huge cost. You can easily and quickly drop $100,000 in tools alone, and you're still gonna find times when you don't have them all. You need computer skills and you need old-school skills. And on that subject alone, dealers need to look at hiring techs that have good computer skills. Well.....if I had good computer skills, do you think I'd be "wanting" to work outside in the heat/cold/sweat/shivering on machinery that is full of crap? Or in a climate-controlled office sitting on my backside? The latter is much more attractive, and the pay for the latter is also better (usually).

benefits. Dealers have a benefit package that isn't competitive. Especially small dealers. GENERALLY speaking larger corporate dealers have better benefit package for employees. That hurts new hires. But a great bennie package costs a lot.

Dealers want master techs. The training to get to that point is grueling! My old coworker (kubota dealer) called the other day and talked about how he has to go to 9 different instructor-led training places , and they are all over the country. It sucks. I've been through it. It used to be that Kubota would do a training "module" in each state, or for small states like in the NE USA, they'd have one in one state that many others could attend. They don't do that anymore because "it costs a lot to train". However it also costs a lot to send people across the country for 3-10 days for training, plus it also contributes to early burnout-which is what happened to me. Everyone's situation is different, but I live by myself and I stay very busy at the house, so going away for more than a couple days is mostly out of the question. I had to do it a few times and each time I had to hire someone to be a caretaker, and it couldn't be just anyone. The one time, I get a call on day #3 that she went in to check on the cat, and opened the door to a floor that was under about an inch of water. Toilet line busted. Wasn't anything I could do but tell the water company to shut the water off. It sat there for another 7 days before I could get in there. Ruined all the floors, sheetrock, just tons and tons of damage and there is still some damage that hasn't been "fixed" (insurance deal...)--that's just one of many things that those classes take you away from. Then, they send you to timbuktu and pay you for 8 hours. They don't pay you for the other 16 hours, even though you ARE on THEIR clock, you can't do anything after 5pm (usually) in the winter, so you go back to a cheap crappy motel room and sit there, or some run down to the local bar and drink until they're passed out. It's no vacation at all, it's work, and they need to be paying you to work. I only got reimbursed for mileage to and from dealer to training center, not the drive time it took (upwards of 9-14 hours depending where I had to go) and they pay based on milage, $0.50 a mile at the time which doesn't cover fuel expenses in my vehicle and I can't drive company vehicle because it's a pile of junk. Yeah just the training alone, chaps my backside and Kubota needs to really look at it again. Their training isn't really "training" either, it's an hour of classroom instruction and introduction and then 6 hours of standing around the shop while someone else does stuff that doesn't even pertain to everyday work that a tech would see. On the excavator stuff you need to be a hydraulic engineer to figure them out and I ain't that and neither are a lot of people. So a dealer needs to look at that too when hiring.

it's a snowball, and finally I'm glad someone other'n myself said all of it. Tractor Mike is right on all of his points. Same things I've been trying to tell y'all for years.
Info: Sarasota Mercedes Benz dealer labor rate is currently $195 per hour!
 

William1

Active member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
BX25D
Jul 28, 2015
887
114
43
Richmond, Virginia
As a child, how things worked intrigued me. So I took a lot of things apart and was not able to always get them back together, which made my parents displeased. Many toys I wanted, not for the toy but the motors, battery boxes, light bulbs.
Eventually, I was able to take anything apart and put it back together, sometimes better than new.
I will always try to fix anything. I hate to see a failed item and not repair it. It irks me to throw out something that is an easy fix, if only parts were available.
I have a massive amount of tools now. When I pass, I have no one that would ever use them. Very sad.
I do let shops do oil changes on my car and PU as it would cost me the $20 just in materials and I do not have to do the work, just endure the efforts they put into 'upsell' unneeded wiper blades and airfilters. I can swap out brake pads in less time than it would take me to drive to a shop and my cost is $35 not $300. The hardest part is getting the first lug bolt back on...Cray-Cray
 
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GeoHorn

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Lifetime Member

Equipment
M4700DT, LA1002FEL, Ferguson5-8B Compactor-Roller, 10KDumpTrailer, RTV-X900
May 18, 2018
3,392
1,243
113
Texas
Well..... I'm one of those people that owns a pneumatic grease gun. I can pump the manual one I own. But when your tucked in a weird position underneath the back axle of a semi trailer greasing air brake joints, needing one arm to hold the gun and can't get to the handle with your other arm, squeezing a button makes a lot of sense 😉😉😉😉

And a lock and lube is a game changer👍👍👍👍👍👍
A big plus for pneumatic grease guns is they don’t require proprietary batteries and chargers both of which wear-out and have environmental/disposal issues.

As a child, how things worked intrigued me. So I took a lot of things apart and was not able to always get them back together, which made my parents displeased. ….
I remember getting a whipping from my mother when she caught me at age 14 for disassembling and reassembling her expensive ladies wrist-watch…. What she didn’t know was, she was punishing me for the THIRD time I’d done it for my entertainment. :ROFLMAO:
 
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Juiced06GTO

Member

Equipment
2016 B2601
Nov 26, 2014
79
8
8
Sutton, MA
I am 38 years old and feel like I have experienced this giant shift in my life time. From a black and white TV at my grandparents house, to being able to watch TV on your phone now whenever you want and everything that goes in between. I was lucky enough to grow up in a family where I helped my father fix everything, he was a federal law enforcement officer so it wasn't his trade, but he learned from his "adopted grandfather" actually next door neighbor, who was a mechanic/machinist for the old GM plant that used to be in Framingham, MA.

I ended up going to a vocational high school, much to the disappointment of my public school teachers and counselors, to study the electrical trade. I worked in the trade on co op my last two years of HS and because I was good at math and science got pushed towards electrical engineering for college and continued working in the trade during summers and breaks. I ended up hating electrical engineering, switched to business and graduated while interning for a construction rental company that I have now worked at for the last 17 years.

The skills I had learned from my father, the trades, and college (both my short stint in engineering and degree in business) have all played huge roles in what I have been able to accomplish so far in life. The one common thread was the "drive/need" to learn new skills. I now have 3 sons , 7,5,3 that I hope I can instill that same drive and passion into. I am putting the finishing touches on my 30x40 workshop over the next few months and my oldest has already decided that the first project to come out of it is going to be a robot that "walks,talks, and picks things up."

Hopefully I'm succeeding and all hope isn't lost on the next generation that is coming up...
 
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NHSleddog

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Lifetime Member

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B2650
Dec 19, 2019
2,149
1,774
113
Southern, NH
Many people have heard and say the Jack of all trades line, but most get it wrong. The complete saying was originally “A jack of all trades is a master of none, but always better than a master of one.

I think the further you get from the population centers, the more you need to know to get by.
 
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