A bizarre thing just happened. We fix a lot of classic cars here. We own them, we love them and we take care of them. We’re known for this, we consult and work on classic cars almost daily. These days, a majority of repair shops will not fix classics or just old cars because they are a bit of a pain. The parts are not readily available and even when they do finally show up they often don’t fit because, over the years the vehicle has been jerry-rigged. Sometimes, like now, we have quite a few of them waiting on parts. As I write this we have a ’59 and a ’60 Chevy Apache Pickup, a ’68 Mustang AND a ’61 Cadillac all waiting on parts. Fortunately we also have a few 80’s, 90’s and 00’s. Otherwise, making money here would be a real chore.

Here’s the bizarre part, a few minutes ago I got a phone call from another garage in Brooklyn. The call was for one of MY customers who has a older car that was stuck in parking lot. Instead of calling me and having the car towed, the customer went to a shop around the corner from where he lives and asked for help. The problem is this mechanic doesn’t have a clue how to find parts for this car so he asked the customer to call me. I was a little dumbfounded by this. Really? I’m supposed to help you find parts for a car that you’re working on instead of me? I told him to start with the local auto parts store to see if they had it, he hadn’t even done that. A few minutes later the customer called me, he didn’t know the mechanic had already contacted me. Of course I HAD to give him a hard time which went something like this, “Not only is it bad enough that the guy didn’t even check first to see if the part was local. With an old car like that, he’ll have removed the broken part only to find the new part is wrong and then you’ll be stuck there while he tries to find the right one. Then what will you do?” Of course he didn’t feel too bright at that moment and it seems like he’ll just end up towing the car here which is what he should’ve done in the first place.


I don’t really have a moral to this story, I just wanted to complain a little. I do go out of my way for people with these old relics but it would be nice to a least get paid on the other end.

P.S. He brought the car this morning and even I’m having a hard time finding the part, I will though or my guys will make something to fit!

About dontgetwrenched

Elayne Kling, was the owner of a downtown Manhattan auto repair shop for 25 years and recently in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Elayne knows the particular ins and outs of the auto repair world and keeps up her blog because people will always need help navigating the potential pitfalls of that world. Due to the crazy NYC real estate market she has since closed down her shop and started a new business called Projects Unlimited Inc., helping other small businesses.
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