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This will be an interesting thread moving forward......

The Peej

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 6, 2012
Messages
336
Location
Connecticut
The problem I see is that a decent mechanic is making more money than your average college graduate. It is my belief that these so called educated types look down from their noses at those who chose to make a living with their hands. And it burns their ass that a grease monkey is making as much or more without going into debt for a student loan. Those are the gatekeepers that block decent wages from truly skilled workers. We as a nation have progressed really far without college degrees. And now we are regressing as a nation with short sited views of how the world works. Because I wasn’t taught common sense values while I was in college. And what do you really know you turn wrenches and I have a degree.
That is the problem in the work place that I see. And as long as we push our kids to get a degree rather then learning a skilled trade. It will never get better. We will just keep creating a better class of idiot to rule over us.
I can agree more!!!!
 

JLarson

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2020
Messages
657
Location
AZ
Occupation
Owner- civil and heavy repair/fab company
Could it also be that operators treat the equipment like crap, abuse the **** out of it, and the mechanics get disenchanted?

Yeah that's a story old as time, as long as there have been monkeys pulling levers they've been breaking the ****, it's just a universal constant.
 

emmett518

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 24, 2021
Messages
816
Location
USA
I'm one of those "educated types". I personally don't worry about how a good mechanic's salary compares to mine. What I worry about is how that mechanic is going to make my company money. To me, having well maintained equipment means that the highly skilled / highly paid operators won't be hanging around, getting bored, or wasting time while broken down equipment keeps them from doing their job. Well maintained equipment means stuff lasts so that I don't have to buy new as often. It means that my customers stay happy because their jobs are completed on budget and on time. It means that I minimize the headaches, while maximizing gross revenues.

Good, experienced mechanics know how to fix things the first time without wasting money on unnecessary parts replacement. They know where problems tend to show on various pieces of equipment, and will know where to start looking before they even touch the hardware. They're good at communication, and are good at teaching others to do things so they can move onto more challenging tasks. And most important, they take pride in their work, their position, and their employer. That's worth whatever amount of money they ask for.
 

Truck Shop

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 7, 2015
Messages
17,507
Location
WWW.
Having a Preventative Maintenance schedule is without a doubt the most important.
It isn't just changing oil and greasing, It's staying on top of all areas when a piece
of equipment or truck is due plus not over running the intervals. Which is a very common
practice with most companies. Simple things like tire rotations can cut tire bills in half plus
while tires are off brakes and suspension components can be better inspected. just one area.
 

Truck Shop

Senior Member
Joined
Dec 7, 2015
Messages
17,507
Location
WWW.
Another-Mechanics talking about overhauls or rigs in need of major repair. Either the piece
has been run to death or lack of service. If a mechanic has the idea that he should be doing
nothing but engine work then he is out of touch and the company is too. Something is
wrong with that picture.
 

kshansen

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
11,273
Location
Central New York, USA
Occupation
Retired Mechanic in Stone Quarry
And one point that seems to get overlooked by those in power is the need for training. I don't care how good a mechanic you were in 1980 you would be lost trying to work on a 2000 machine and then again in 2020.

Where I worked when the shop was first set up back in the 1970's the boss of the shop understood that and every year about half the mechanics would attend a one week course at one of the manufactures. Then once or twice a year he would bring in someone from a local dealer we dealt with for a one or two day seminar on some machine or component.

It stayed that way for several years through a couple bosses. Then we got a few bosses who had the idea that training was and expense and not an investment and it stayed that way till I retired.

Even when we started getting new Cat equipment with all the computer stuff they put off getting Cat ET for a few years and when they did they expected one laptop to shared with around half a dozen plants across the state! Like that would work.

Might as well have one set of sockets to share around the state, need a 9/16 call around and find where it is and then drive an hour each way to get it and hope it's not broken when you get it.
 

Zewnten

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Messages
569
Location
Earth
And that's why I will not work for a construction company again.
The mechanics that are working there I wouldn't let them change a flat.
So the good mechanics get every job that isn't a flat tire or blown hose.
Whichever superintendent throws the best tantrum gets the good mechanic that day.
That's how you end up having machines torn down all over the state. Because the equipment manager doesn't have the balls to tell the superintendent to rent a machine while other repairs are getting finished.
And in the meantime the equipment manager is all over the good mechanics ass because nothing is getting fixed. But won't admit that things would be fixed if he would actually let the mechanic do his job and quit hopscotching all over the state to appease the whining superintendent of the day.
And lastly the politics of working in construction. While the good mechanic is busy making the bad mechanics look good. The bad mechanics are busy stabbing the good mechanic in the back. Nevermind that he just completely rebuilt the machine that has been at the other mechanics job site for months on end without complaining. But let one machine leave your job site with so much as a light burned out. And he will cry like you don't do anything and every machine that you have on your job is neglected.
If you can't tell but I am a little jaded when it comes to construction companies.
It's the reason I quit doing this for 3 years.

This is pretty much the exact same at every company in my state. The willfully ignorant leading the blind. Promotions based on kissing up over talent, not willing to actually fix stuff, and when you show up and everything is gone to he** it's all supposed to be magically fixed now that they hired someone.
 

funwithfuel

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2017
Messages
5,784
Location
Will county Illinois
Occupation
Mechanic
I like when you present them with a cost estimate to repair, they immediately start trying to whittle it down. On the dealer level, they approve the repair, then try negotiating the price down after the repairs are completed. Try that sh!t at the grocery, put 150 worth of groceries on the belt and tell them you wanna pay only 100 or so. They'll laugh you outta the store. This is common practice in both dirt and highway around me. :mad:
 

suladas

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
1,731
Location
Canada
I like when you present them with a cost estimate to repair, they immediately start trying to whittle it down. On the dealer level, they approve the repair, then try negotiating the price down after the repairs are completed. Try that sh!t at the grocery, put 150 worth of groceries on the belt and tell them you wanna pay only 100 or so. They'll laugh you outta the store. This is common practice in both dirt and highway around me. :mad:

Or after the job is done, they say they will pay in 60 or 90 days. Go into a grocery store and say you want 60 or 90 day credit terms. Unless it's been negotiated upfront, it's payment on completion, I don't get how people don't understand that. If you want to be extended credit, you need to request it upfront.
 

suladas

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2016
Messages
1,731
Location
Canada
I have a ton of respect for mechanics who really know what they are doing, but man are they ever hard to find. My brother has expanded a fair bit and tried a mobile mechanic, case dealer, and 2 auto mechanics who work at dealerships, all are absolutely incompetent. Screw up basic things like doing brakes, can't figure out what hose is leaking on a skidsteer, etc. Doesn't have enough time to fix everything, but it's cheaper and easier to do it yourself. I'm not a mechanic far from it but it baffles me how bad they are when they've been doing it full time for years. A good mechanic who can diagnose things and fix it properly the first time is worth pretty much whatever they want. $35/hr is a steal. I would pay a lot more then that for a good mechanic to do my repairs instead of doing it myself. I think for a company who only needs 1 mechanic it's tough though as you have no support if you run into something you don't know, you need someone extremely experienced and very good at troubleshooting.
 

kshansen

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
11,273
Location
Central New York, USA
Occupation
Retired Mechanic in Stone Quarry
One more thing that some don't seem to understand might be more of a problem these days with all the computer and electronic stuff. You could be one of the best at trouble shooting say a Cat machine but then the company will decide to start buying Brand X equipment because they beat Cat's bid by $5.00.

Now it would not be too bad if those deciding on this change had the sense to realize there would be a learning curve for the mechanics and made it a point to get them some good training and help out with the new tooling that will be required.

Instead you will get hit with the attitude "I thought you called yourself a mechanic how come you don't understand what is wrong with that machine. Plus do you have any idea how much that manual costs, do you really need it?"
 

Vetech63

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 10, 2016
Messages
6,543
Location
Oklahoma
Well, today brought more fun. For future reference, the mechanic still employed I will refer to as HNC (has no clue), and the fired mechanic as NFG (new fired guy). I'm also going to do some pics in thumbnails to save some space.
I decided to change my schedule and start on the Bomag this morning. When I got there, it had already been assembled by the Bomag/Deere dealer after I left yesterday. Nice of someone to inform me of that, but whatever. The primary super comes over and says the engine is still leaking coolant, that the problem never was the water pump as NFG had previously determined. He informed me that the Deere tech believed the leak to be the head gasket. I told him I would check it out myself. Now I take the alternator off to gain some sight access and low and behold HNC walks up.......tells me the machine is being picked up and transported to a job this morning. Yeah, not happening with a coolant leak. To make a long story short, it was a small leak at the front cover that took all of 5 minutes to repair. Its amazing what tightening a few front cover bolts will do. So I decide to look at the filters, some marked, some not........take a look at the dates on the ones marked.

So HNC wants to send this machine out with a coolant leak, unserviced, and not checked out. I get it running with the water leak repaired, hit the high throttle............45 seconds later the engine stalls out. I get off the machine and crack open the secondary fuel filter bleed screw and nothing but air. Checked the fuel in the tank.........full. I service the machine filters and oil, tighten all the suction clamps, then run the machine on high for 30 minutes with the vibrator on and it runs like a champ. Here is some pics for your viewing pleasures.
Bomag running.jpg Bomag old pilot filter.jpg Bomag old oil filter.jpg Bomag fuel old date.jpg
The black filter is the engine oil dated 2018. The grey hydraulic filter housing is dated 2017. Notice the hours marked on the primary fuel filter @ 0065. I took care of a couple of other small issues I noticed but didn't take pics of that.
 

Vetech63

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 10, 2016
Messages
6,543
Location
Oklahoma
Here is the absolute crazyness. HNC couldn't figure out why the starter wouldn't engage on this machine.........so he runs separate starter wiring outside of machine specs. This has bypassed all of the safety features and now the machine will start in forward or reverse without the operator sitting in the seat. Just complete stupidity:(:eek::rolleyes:o_O.
Bomag start button 1.jpg BOMAG start wire2.jpg Bomag start wire at starter.jpg
This is a HUGE no no! If this guy did this to anything of mine I would fire him on the spot! I made a note of it and notified the primary super that this should be corrected before this machine sees another jobsite. I am awaiting a reply.

On another note, I also got a good look at the 700K engine heating issue. You guys aren't going to believe that one! I will post it in the morning cause I'm mentally drained.:p:eek:
 

JD955SC

Senior Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2011
Messages
1,367
Location
The South
And that's why I will not work for a construction company again.
The mechanics that are working there I wouldn't let them change a flat.
So the good mechanics get every job that isn't a flat tire or blown hose.
Whichever superintendent throws the best tantrum gets the good mechanic that day.
That's how you end up having machines torn down all over the state. Because the equipment manager doesn't have the balls to tell the superintendent to rent a machine while other repairs are getting finished.
And in the meantime the equipment manager is all over the good mechanics ass because nothing is getting fixed. But won't admit that things would be fixed if he would actually let the mechanic do his job and quit hopscotching all over the state to appease the whining superintendent of the day.
And lastly the politics of working in construction. While the good mechanic is busy making the bad mechanics look good. The bad mechanics are busy stabbing the good mechanic in the back. Nevermind that he just completely rebuilt the machine that has been at the other mechanics job site for months on end without complaining. But let one machine leave your job site with so much as a light burned out. And he will cry like you don't do anything and every machine that you have on your job is neglected.
If you can't tell but I am a little jaded when it comes to construction companies.
It's the reason I quit doing this for 3 years.

Or how about when management bows down to a crappy “mechanic” and willfully ignores the thousands of dollars of damage he causes through malicious carelessness because he slaps together crap quickly and therefore speed = good.
 
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