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    Results 1 to 13 of 13
    1. #1
      Join Date
      Dec 2002
      Location
      MusicCity
      Posts
      473

      Finding a needle in the Nashville hay stack (again)

      I know this is a looooong shot, but am casting as wide a net as possible. We had a painter / builder here that I trained up personally over the course of six years. He was really doing a great job, responding to all of my training well, worked his way into 60k a year at 30 years old, the classic house, new car, wife, kid, then threw it all away by getting into heavy duty drugs. Needless to say, I caught all kinds of ridiculousness on the shop cameras, which led to some heated unpleasant discussions, finding him past the point of no return so I had to let him go. I really hated to do it, as I had put six years of my time, effort, money, and energy into this guy, and now had to flush it all down the drain. I then ended up hiring in a guy with 30 years of paint and body experience out of a Chrysler dealer body shop, but it turns out that a 100+ days into the job, he just isn't going to work out. You know how you have either got "it" or you don't. I have been interviewing people, working my contacts here in the Nashville area, and I just cannot seem to find the right candidate.


      So yes, this is a help wanted ad that maybe, just maybe, might turn up the needle in the haystack. I know it's a total long shot, but there might just be a member here in the Nashville area, or that may know somebody?


      Clean, safe, climate controlled, fully equipped shop, with a mellow professional specialist type of environment. We provide everything, all you need to provide is your favorite coffee mug. The job consists of the use of carbide cutters on hand held air motors to expertly shape and smooth the hydroboost castings, then painting the units with a trick proprietary method. Basic other shop duties include urethane clear coating the billet plates, running a drill press occasionally, and eventually some cross training into the highly specialized build work. What we do is so unique that you can't really jump straight into it and be an immediate mega tech - it requires skill and training. You bring the skill, and we will provide the training. The position starts at $18 - $20 an hour, though quickly ramps up as your skill and accuracy within your workmanship does.


      We also offer flex time, meaning you can put your 40 hours in just about any way that you may want to. Put in an extra hour Monday through Thursday, then enjoy a short Friday, or bang out your 40 and then enjoy a three day weekend. Or? Take any day of the week off and work it out on a Saturday instead. Want to start at 9 and work until 5? Or 8 until 4, or anything else like 11 until 7? Not a problem, just get your forty in any which way that may suit you best.


      You can view some of the basics by scrolling down this web page:


      http://www.hydratechbraking.com/products.html


      Here is the full show preparation model as an example:





      Soooo.... If you are in the Nashville area, we are right by the Nashville Super Speedway (that is getting ready to finally re-open - hooray!). I sure hope they get the 1/4 mile dragstrip done - the 1/8th was ok, but I'm a "1320 guy". If interested, please send me a private message, or e-mail to 'admin "at" hydratechbraking.com' Please do not call our public line, as Jim is already overwhelmed with phone duties as it is. I also want to gauge where you are at in your ability to compose an appropriate dialogue via a keyboard if possible - while certainly a bonus, it is not required for the position.


      Thank you kindly! Let me know if you may be interested, or may know of anybody that could fill the position!


      There IS a difference - Thank you for choosing Hydratech!


      There IS a difference - Thank you for choosing Hydratech!

      Paul M. Clark
      Founder / Master Engineer

      Hydratech Braking Systems ®
      www.hydratechbraking.com

    2. #2
      Join Date
      Jan 2014
      Location
      Norfolk, VA
      Posts
      527
      Country Flag: United States
      Wow, sounds like a good opportunity for someone. I've still got 3 years left in the Navy, but this sounds like exactly the type of job I'd like to get into for my "second career". Best of luck finding a good candidate!
      1972 C20 Suburban
      1964 Corvette Coupe

    3. #3
      Join Date
      Nov 2011
      Posts
      154
      Country Flag: United States
      dang, wish I were at a point on my life i could move. I would love this job. I am currently a quality analyst for a manufacturing company, but i really do miss shop work.
      Justin Hocking
      67 Mustang Coupe to Fastback swap
      TCI front and rear
      Detroit Mini Tub

      Future coyote

    4. #4
      Join Date
      Aug 2019
      Location
      Nashville, TN
      Posts
      57
      Country Flag: United States
      I will put the feelers out and see if I could suggest someone. Sounds like a pretty specialized position, but there’s tons of people in the region with a similar skill set.

      I’m in Nashville too and glad to hear the Super Speedway could reopen. Any particular news source on the topic, or was that word of mouth?

    5. #5
      Join Date
      Dec 2002
      Location
      MusicCity
      Posts
      473

      Yes, please do put the feelers out - the position is still open

      Oh cool - TanMan, good to hear you are from the area, as your contacts may just help turn up the right person. I have every belief that the best person is somebody that would really enjoy building these little gems for car nuts all across the globe. Watching TV or thumbing through a magazine and realizing that your hands built that part of the car being featured is a very rewarding feeling that really motivates you to build the best! Seeing these getting ordered in from all over the world is a trip too - who would've figured we'd ever ship to Iceland? South Africa? Europe? Dubai? Places like that give you the mental image of some gearhead overseas ripping it up in a vintage muscle car, with some reporting that what we consider as exotic high end cars here are boring compared to a '70 HEMI Cuda flying down the Autobahn.

      My shop foreman is a gentleman that worked out on the shop floor for Lochinvar for 17 years. He is tickled to all ends to be working at Hydratech now. It took him a few months to get the hang of carefully shaping the castings (with carbide cutters on air motors), the proprietary method of paintwork we use, and the specialized assembly, but certainly caught on quickly. The point is that he had no particular automotive back ground, but knew his way around the tool box and the overall shop environment, and just listened very carefully during training, took lots of notes and shot quite a few videos on his cell phone for reference. One of our previous painters was a woman who worked for us for 4 years, but she just didn't have the ambition to become a true artisan - it was just a job. She didn't grasp the concept of nailing something just right - it was just an auto part to her. She kept trying to lower the bar, while I kept insisting on raising the bar - she just missed the entire concept of being an "automotive jeweler", building each one better and better and better... Trying to find the right person for this position has been VERY challenging. Back in Detroit, I could've filled the position within a week. Having been here now since 2007, I realize that there IS talent in the area, though it just seems vastly more difficult to find. I would very much appreciate it if you guys could put this out on some other forums you may be members of please.

      At any rate, here is the scoop on the Speedway:

      https://www.tennessean.com/story/new...ay/5312537002/

      I used to love sitting here in the shop listening to the race cars back when the track was open! I was so disappointed when the track was closed. There was even talk that it was going to be demolished to only be replaced by big distribution warehouses. But now it's coming back! Like a dream come true for me, as it is one of the reasons why I built our shop right here!

      There IS a difference - Thank you for choosing Hydratech!

      Paul M. Clark
      Founder / Master Engineer

      Hydratech Braking Systems ®
      www.hydratechbraking.com

    6. #6
      Join Date
      Aug 2019
      Location
      Nashville, TN
      Posts
      57
      Country Flag: United States
      Thanks for the info. This sounds like a really great opportunity and better yet, a great company to work for. If I were in the job market myself I’d definitely be giving you a call!

      Also super excited about Nashville Superspeedway reopening. I’d love to see a resurgence of motorsports in the area.

    7. #7
      Join Date
      Oct 2020
      Posts
      1
      Ask your tool dealer to keep an eye out. We know just about everyone in town.. Chances are if they don't pay their bill they are also not a reliable employee. Tool dealers are one of the best networks imo. Good luck.

    8. #8
      Join Date
      Dec 2002
      Location
      MusicCity
      Posts
      473

      Here we go again :( *HELP WANTED*

      Well, here we go again... I managed to find a guy that actually could prepare a brake unit casting better than I could - an impossible dream come true. The golden rule is to always locate people that are better than you to bring on board into your staffing. I actually did it, and Rob really took care of business! But.... here comes the end (again). Rob is from Chicago, but fell in love and married a woman here in Nashville a few years ago. They have unfortunately divorced, though have tried and tried to reconcile their marriage to no avail. This has impacted Rob deeply. Despite how much he loves his job, he now (understandably?) feels the fiery need to get away from his ex wife as far away as he can - not just the other side of town. I have tried and tried to make his existence here at Hydratech as wonderful as possible, doing everything I could to keep him on board, paying him well, taking good care of him.

      We had a classic end of the work week discussion, and Rob dropped the bomb on me that he has had it with his ex, and desperately wants to get as far away from her as possible, likely going back home to his roots in Chicago, or possibly swinging the other way to stay with some family in Texas. Either way, he has agreed to stay another month, willing to train anybody that can fill his shoes. No amount of money I have offered him to stay is going to change his mind - it's not about money for him in this scenario. Naturally, we have guys here that want his position, but I am not convinced that they may be able to step up to the challenge (no slight against them - they are good men). Working a brake unit casting into expert precision with carbide cutters is an art, as you can always take the metal off, but you can't realistically put it back on (DOH!). Shaping the castings into perfection, then painting them into glory is something that takes a very specific artistic talent that you don't see very often. Rob can take a rough raw OE brake unit, carbide it into perfection in less than hour (amazing), put a couple of expertly applied coats of paint on it, and achieve total perfection. The kicker? He can do it without having to even do any corrective sanding in between coats - AMAZING. You can want to do it, but "you have either got the mojo magic talent or you don't". Yes, a person with enough drive or will to succeed can get there, but the path to perfection may be a long one unless you have got the mojo.

      This drives me nuts, as it means I am likely going to have to cover this position again. I am already so damned busy as it is that covering for another 40 hour position is going to murder me. With my Diabetes slowly taking me down, I just can't do half the things I used to be able to do just a short few years ago. I built a wicked 488 stroker for my 442 as a 50th birthday present to myself. I patiently waited until I had 500 miles on the build. As soon as I dropped the hammer for the very first time, I blew the highly prepared Grand National 200R4 darned near right out of the car. I then ordered in a GM Performance 572XP 4L85E to swap in, but have not been able to get to it in over two long years now. It breaks my heart to walk by my 442 up on the hoist in the shop 50 times a day, knowing that I am just too busy with Hydratech to get into the considerable troubles it is going to take to graft in the new trans (gutting the interior for some floor pan mods needed to accommodate this beastly trans). The engine also got hurt when this happened, as it revved up to kingdom come when it happened, dropping 30 lbs of oil pressure afterwards, so I have to also dive back into the engine to see what happened in there too. At least it is sitting in a fully climate controlled shop staying shiny and bright! Long nights burning the midnight oil until the sun comes up covering for this position is something I am NOT looking forward to if I can't find the right candidate - I just can't physically do it anymore. Of course Rob is going to work with our existing guys to see if we may be able to get them skilled up enough, though I just don't see it happening. No slight what so ever against my other guys that want it, but they are more mechanical than artistic. Who knows, maybe one of them will reach for the golden ring and surprise me. Meanwhile, I have to put this post back up (again) in the hopes that it just might hit the right target. Sometimes it is just dumb luck to be at the right place at the right time despite the odds!

      Sooooo.... If there is by chance a member here, or possibly a person that you may know that could possibly fit the position, by all means do please let me know.

      Thank you kindly!

      There IS a difference - Thank you for choosing Hydratech!

      Paul M. Clark
      Founder / Master Engineer

      Hydratech Braking Systems ®
      www.hydratechbraking.com

    9. #9
      Join Date
      Feb 2019
      Location
      Kankakee IL
      Posts
      287
      Bump off the ex?


      KIDDING!
      Tracey

    10. #10
      Join Date
      Nov 2018
      Posts
      353
      Country Flag: United States
      Know any hot women you could point in his direction to keep him around? Sounds like if you can get him past the ex, you can probably keep him around.

    11. #11
      Join Date
      Jul 2008
      Location
      Summerfield, NC
      Posts
      240
      Country Flag: United States
      Might want to look into vibratory tumblers? You could bolt on plates to protect the finished surfaces, then drop the cylinders into the tumbler and have them coming out ready to paint with little interaction.

      (not affiliated, just did a quick google search for vibratory tumbler)

      https://www.kramerindustriesonline.c...shing-systems/
      *Jeff*
      Project Salty - 1964 4 door Malibu, beaten, neglected, red headed foster child
      Cammed LQ4 / T56 Swap Project Thread <-click to read! 😁

    12. #12
      Join Date
      Sep 2010
      Location
      Martinez, CA
      Posts
      142
      Country Flag: United States
      How much specialized equipment is required? Is there any opportunity to have your valued departing employee do some form of the work in Chicago?
      A buddy I rent shop space to has been building some small sub-assemblies for his employer after the shop closed for Covid. It’s worked out so well it’s continued after the shop reopened. He doesn’t have to commute and loves it.
      1966 Chevelle, 3.6L/217 CI, 4 cam direct injected V6, 6 speed auto, full Hotchkis suspension, 4 wheel Wilwood discs, white w/red interior, cowl hood. 3260 lbs w/full tank. Built for 35 mpg. So far 32.

    13. #13
      Join Date
      Dec 2002
      Location
      MusicCity
      Posts
      473

      Much more to it than meets the eye

      Like a really nice paint job on a car, it is all about the preparation before painting it. Just like a quarter panel or any other visual, the paint job is only going to turn out as nice as the prep work. In this case, it is even harder than working a body panel on a car, as we do not use any fillers to straighten out any areas - it is all about learning how to massage the castings with approximately 20 different air tools, ranging from a variety of different single and double cut carbide cutters on air motors, small abrasive disc action with 90 degree air motors, tiny carbides on Dremel tools, and also small orbital sanders for conditioning some factory machined surfaces. For instance, a guy that has experience porting cylinder heads would know exactly how to massage these castings.

      Once the castings are smoothed, we have a proprietary paint process we have developed that allows us to do things that some would initially say is impossible. Of course I can't go into specifics, as it is a trade secret - anybody we bring in has to sign a NDA (non disclosure agreement) so that we can protect out intellectual property. Suffice it to say that just like meticulously block sanding a car into perfection for a fantastic paint job, the paint job on the brake unit can still be botched. When that happens occasionally, the paint job has to be sanded back down to get it ready for next go around. Just like an expert bodyman / painter would do, you would determine if it only needed a spot repair, and if so, skillfully repair and blend in that section undetectably. WAY EASIER SAID THAN DONE, because you aren't able to wet sand and polish any given area to blend it in.

      The suggestions do not fall on deaf ears - you never know when an "aha moment" could present itself, so keep them coming. Vibratory polishing would not be able to remove the casting parting lines or make the casting half seams exactly level to each other, so that's out. Shipping hundreds of pounds of brake units on skids would be feasible outbound, but once fully prepared, they would have to be just about pillow cushioned on their transit back in to us, complicating that possibility. The costs to do this combined with the inevitable potential for damages incurred in shipping take discussions of remote preparation off the table. Rob would have to set up a complete workshop to be able to prepare these wherever he might land, which would also make for all of the further challenges that would come with that endeavor. We have a tried and true system that works very well, though it takes a skilled hand to make it happen. Handling the preparation here in house makes the most sense, as everything is in place - lighting, ventilation, specialized custom fixtures, my direct hands on support, along with any and all equipment / shop supplies needed.

      The demand for the full Show preparation option vastly outstrips our current ability to produce these, so ideally I would do well to bring in two specialists. We would sell 2-3 time more of the show prepared models if we could produce them on par with the demand for them. Since we currently can't keep up with the demand for the full show models, we have the ever popular Street Preparation models that are also expertly shaped and massaged along with a specialized paint process. These Street Prep models are what our Show Prepared models were up until about 2010 when we started taking them to a whole new level after doing bunches of them for SEMA / Show Circuit class builds, and also just simply high end builds were customers wanted something really special. The Street Preps also take time to produce, but nowhere near the amount that the full special Show models do. This makes for an upscale choice that satisfies most. Some people actually can't tell the difference between the Street and Show models from eight to ten feet away. Get right up on it with each model side by side, and then you see the dramatic difference. Both versions are head and shoulders over anything else available on the market due to the amount of skillful preparation. Some customers report back that they have placed their Show prepared brake unit on their kitchen counter for a few days, with their wives not particularly knowing what it is, but allowing the car part to sit on the counter for days because of just how pretty it is (go figure). Others have said it is too nice for their engine compartment and it now sticks out in such a way as to make the rest of the engine compartment lack luster. Some even say it belongs under a glass display case and not on a car....



      Hmmm - the more I think about it, the more I believe I should expand my search to place two full time artisans on the task!

      There IS a difference - Thank you for choosing Hydratech!

      Paul M. Clark
      Founder / Master Engineer

      Hydratech Braking Systems ®
      www.hydratechbraking.com