Gonzo Weaver (32)

Scott "Gonzo" Weaver owns a Tulsa Auto Electric Shop and has a knack for telling true stories of his adventures in auto repair. The following short stories are excerpted from his book, "Hey Look! I Found The Loose Nut", which provides a Good Laugh for Mechanics of Any Age. For more information, Contact Scott Weaver at Gonzosae@aol.com and see his website at www.gonzostoolbox.com.

You can purchase his book from Amazon at: Hey Look, I Found the Loose Nut

Thursday, 26 July 2012 11:06

Problem on the IN-Side

Written by Gonzo Weaver

The tow truck came around the corner of my shop with a 2003 Focus strapped down on the bed. It’s Stacey’s daughter’s car.

Thursday, 21 June 2012 10:47

Take it to the Dealer!

Written by Gonzo Weaver

Everyone has a reason why they use a dealer repair shop vs. an independent shop… These are a few of those reasons I’ve run into over my decades of independent service work.

Friday, 25 May 2012 09:58

Comparing Automotive Parts: Is it Apples to Apples?

Written by Gonzo Weaver

Alternators, starters, voltage regulators, window motor assemblies, light bulbs, serpentine belts… the list goes on and on of the various cheaply made replacement parts available. Being able to distinguish what parts are good or bad is part of being a professional in this crazy world of automotive repair.

Monday, 30 April 2012 15:14

GI - Think Like a Mechanic

Written by Gonzo Weaver

After high school I made the choice to join the Marine Corps.  It was a big step for a young guy who really didn’t have a direction, nor thought about the future.  So, off I went to boot camp.  I’ll admit it was tough, it was physically demanding and very mentally challenging.  But, I did very well, got a lot of good marks and even a couple of special awards.

One of the biggest surprises was when my platoon  was on the “mess and maintenance” week.  I was  assigned to the commandant’s headquarters building.  I was to shine all the brass, wax the floors, and  general building maintenance.  One day the Sargent  in charge said it was time to mow the grass.  He sent  me and two other recruits out with scissors to clip  the lawn in front of the headquarters building. Really, I’m not kidding…scissors, and I’m not talking  about a large pair of scissors, no… more like the kind you'd find in any home office or school desk.

Thursday, 22 March 2012 08:59

What If You’re Looking for More than One Waldo?

Written by Gonzo Weaver

OK, I really do fix cars for a living. I take a car that’s acting up, locate the problem, and make the appropriate repair. Sometimes I haven’t a clue where to look when I start, but with a few proper tools, a little ingenuity, and a whole lot of experience I’ll find the problem eventually.

Thursday, 23 February 2012 09:17

Code Talkers: It Takes More Than Reading Codes to Be a Good Automotive Technician

Written by Gonzo Weaver

During World War II the US used a secret type of language to send and receive messages, so the enemy couldn’t find out what they were talking about.

Thursday, 26 January 2012 13:16

Check Engine Light Paranoia

Written by Gonzo Weaver

Charlie comes in every now and then.  I guess you could say he’s a regular but I think I would call him more of an opportunist when it comes to his car repairs.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011 14:03

A Picture Worth a Thousand Words Most of Which We Can’t Print

Written by Gonzo Weaver

Years ago my younger brother came to work for me. He didn’t know a thing about cars, but was willing to learn all that he could. Teaching new technicians is an art that most shop owners have to learn to do, but teaching your little brother can be a chore and can test your patience.

Wednesday, 23 November 2011 09:03

Are We Crossing Into the ‘Outer Limits’ of Automotive Repair?

Written by Gonzo Weaver

“Don’t try adjusting the throttle cable—there isn’t one. I can tell when it’s dark enough for the headlights.  Your Air Conditioner is under my complete control, along with steering, windows, stereo volume and braking.   Don’t be alarmed, I’m here to help assist in operating your vehicle. Who am I? Why, I’m your friend, I’m your PCM. Some people may call me a “Human Assistant Logistic” device—call me Hal for short. I like that name.”

Thursday, 20 October 2011 13:23

Dealing with Angry Customers and Growing ‘Alligator Skin’

Written by Gonzo Weaver

If there is one thing I find hard to deal with in this topsy turvy world of the auto repair business is the way some people will react when they are at the repair shop. It’s the way they conduct themselves at the shop when it comes time to get their car repaired.

Over the years I’ve been praised and degraded.  I’ve been called a saint and I’ve been called the devil (or worse). I’ve heard the shouting and the stuff I probably wasn’t suppose to hear (walls don’t always block sound you know). After a while you’ve heard it all before, and the attitudes that you see at the front desk become a part of the daily grind. Coping with all this is what I call; “growing alligator skin.” I try not to take things so personally, I’ll let the alligator skin handle it, and then take off my protective coat before I get back home to the wife and kids.

What gives with the need for such a thing as “alligator skin”? I believe there a several factors inherent to the automotive industry that brings on this crocodilian coat of protection.

Mistrust of the automotive repair world in general is what I believe is the number one factor; but what brings on that mistrust? Is it the incompetent mechanic? I doubt that is always the case. Is it the money out of their pockets which they were not expecting when they drove down the road to the repair shop? I believe it’s more in the hands of the unknowing consumer who reads and watches too many evening news reports on the unscrupulous business practices of the few out there that really are rip offs and not the normal operations of countless decent shops in this country.

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