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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Anyone got any good advice about working with cars as a career? I'm finding the industry as a whole does not welcome anyone over the age of eighteen with other expierience and most people say if cars are your passion it's better to keep it a hobby. I've just finnished my first year at college doing a part time welding/fabrication/restoration course which i really enjoyed and found myself much happier there than doing my so called "exciting" bar manager job which i have just resigned from. Having just returned from a holiday in California i found it completley different over there with people actively trying to recruit people into what is one of the fastest growing industries over there with so many differnt avenues to choose from. I'm even looking into working in parts or sales but it i always get greeted with such a cold front here with some people reacting to me like im a little bit odd because of my enthusiasm. Please if anyone has anything to say id appreciate the advice, im at a bit of a croosroads now with what direction to take and when ever people ask what would you like to do for a living, cars is what comes to mind first, cheers.
 

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Well I always wanted to work in the auto industry, I struggled for nearly 18 months to find a suitable job as I had no experience (I'd just graduated...doh!!). Worked (as a contractor) for about 12 months at a major OEM based in Solihull building 4x4 vehicles. Threatened with redundancy twice in 12 months and got fed up of it. Now working in marketing/sales for a large aftermarket distribution company and having a hard time fighting the competion from low quality cheap parts from the far east...

Unless you are going to work in a niche market (i.e. vw aftermarket parts, kit cars or motorsport) you are going to struggle in the auto industry in the UK. I dont want to dishearten you but its not looking good here... I am already concerned that when I want to make a move in future there will be nowhere to go..and career -wise I have all my eggs in one basket.

Sorry for painting a bleak picture, but if you do go into the auto industry, try and have some sort of back up plan to support yourself if you end up out of work.
 

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Dont do it !!!



Thats my only advise to you, Ive been a mechanic for 21 years now and i now run my own (quite succesful) garage, but its shit, dirty and poorly paid and you get nothing but agro for it
Times have changed so much as in technology its nigh on impossible to keep up with things and its a never ending learning process
When i first started out all we did all day was servicing, day in day out, now days your lucky if you do a couple a day
But mechanics now are very far and few between as nowadays traines seem to become what is called parts fitters, take a broken bit off and put a new one on without really finding out what they have changed or how it works its a shame really
But if it what you really want to do then go for it but id seriously advise you to look at another aspect of the motor industry than mechanics

Good luck ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No suprise there then! Cheers for the advice, unfortunatley your just cementing what other people have already said but seriously i appreciate your honnesty. It's seems a sad industry that has few people that still care about what they do and most would rather be doing something else, it's a shame that the only real interest i have in my life other than the usual things young people like to get up to has so many limitations here, it really felt like it had a buzz about it in the states although i have heard from different sources the vw scene is not at it's best. Been looking into parts/sales advisor for some of the more prestige manufacturers and there seems to be some good money in it but again a real reluctance to take anyone on without years of expierience. The other problem i have is living in almost central London there isn't much in the way of motorsport/aftermarket/niche buisnesses to apply to. Now i have another car the bug may finally get the atention it deserves and hopefuly next year i will be able to take to a few shows and maybe get some atention that way, not giving up yet! cheers
 

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Bad move IMO :(

I was a main dealer panel beater from school then had my own mobile tuning business the money is shit to say the least and not good job prospects

Saying thatif you what to do it go for it ;)
 

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Hey. I'm an apprentice for a independent TVR garage. Iv pissed around for about 5-6 years, just working when I needed to and having fun when I didnít but thatís not a "Proper career plan" apparently.

Like you the only thing that really interests me is cars so I thought that would be the best option. Iv been doing it for about 8 months on £80 a week which is a pain in the ass to say the least. In the end I hope it will be worth it but Iím struggling to motivate my self at the moment. Just have to keep dreaming about my own veedub garage i guess.

Id keep doing your course and get experience that way. I imagine sitting in a nice sales office rather that freezing ya balls off in a garage would be a better option.
 

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Few months ago I considered applying for a job as a mechanic. Firstly the guy I rang was really patronising and was saying things like "well, you'd have to do lots of different things" to which I said "Yes, I pretty much expect that with cars" and this guy then went on to say "and you'd have to work to strict deadlines"
To which I kinda lost interest as it was clear this garage was run just like every other industry in the UK - by people in suits who don't have a clue!

I now do rewires as a side job (hence my signiture) and although I'm not madly busy, it's difficult to fit it around a full time job.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yep ive spoken to some proper twats along the way with alot of patronising talk, thats not to say everyone ive spoken to has been bad (present company included) but unfortunatley it has been the majority. Thinking about going to Uni, graphic design!!!
 

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Have u thought about doing something like i do ?

im a parts specialist for Gsf, did my nvq's ect full time in collage in classic/modern car resto, and now work in a office/shop in cardiff..... dont fit any parts ect, shirt n tie jobbie, and not bad money either.... and always another step on the ladder if you want it in other departments of gsf ect,

im sure MickB would also agree.... u get ur garage owners in asking for parts ect and just want to get the job done... simple as.... but u also get ur aircooled people who want to have a talk, swap idea's and ask for advice.....

i would say my job is never boring... as every customer has a differnt problem/question for each car, so always kept on your toe's....

before i started, i had tons of people saying... why on earth would u want to do that .. surly u will be bored within a week,


NEVER !! lol

Best of luck dude.

Mark
Gsf Cardiff
 

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The industry is dieing in the UK. Just been made redundant from Peugeot as they can get labour in Eastern Europe for Ä5/hour. As soon as those countries start asking for more money they just move production further East, the only thing going for that is, is that the Earth is round so one day it may come back but i doubt it :rolleyes: .
Go into Aerospace thats the only thing growing in the UK.
 

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I've been working in a bodyshop doing panel/prep/paint for 2 1/2 years now. I started with no experience, just loads of enthusiasm!

Like mechanics, its dirty, smelly, crappy work, and the pay is really shit to start with, not many places operate 'normal' working hours either (i work a 10 hour day with no tea breaks and a half hour lunch!)

Saying that, i now have a trade under my belt i can take anywhere, opening my own place is always an option for the future too. Also the money is good now im qualified, without being a big headed c*nt, im on 21K a year gross, which isn't bad considering im only 20! :D

Being a mechanic, or 'parts fitter' might be a bit of a dying trade, but however technical and complicated they continue to make cars, people will always smash them up! :D
 

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im at the same crossroads,i was an apprentice mechanice,who came out of the game when id done my time cos the money was poo,ive worked for the same kitchen co for 10 years now,and i wanna get back into it,ive been offered a ramp at my mates garage to set myself up on my own,BUT ive got a mortgage and my prospects in my job are excellent,and im gonna be stepping into management within a year,but i still have this itch i wanna scratch,and im too scared to take the leap.
have you thought about emigrating,cos youve got your quals,and if there screaming out for automotive workers then it could be good,remember theres a lot of tossers in the industry over here,but there is in any industry/job.
i personally think that cos youre still young,youve got a chance to do what you want,and if people on here in the trade are advising against it,then take heed,cos there doing it every day.
i think ill be settling for it as a hobby tbh.
hope this helps. :)
 

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Cardiff Dubber said:
but u also get ur aircooled people who want to have a talk, swap idea's and ask for advice.....
thats one of the best bits :D being able to pass on info & help for other dub lovers
 

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It helps when building your cars
I did enjoy my time in the workshop,it was my hobby and job.I had a good laugh.I worked my way up to a master tech for a motor dealer.It took me four years to find a job out of the trade.But I did do 17 years.
Do your own thing and remember short cuts dont pay.
Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yeah i looked into parts with gsf and euro, might still be interested but being in london i doubt ill get to give to much aircooled advice. It's nice to see people still value those workers that give that little bit extra (not that!), Mike at mach7 Pete at Funkenblitz and Steve at Serrano's to name a few (and max at volkspares). This link has helped lots, and although there's a small sensation of "reality check" it's good to hear from the people out there doing it.
 

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It's a very hard trade to be in , worth it sometimes , not at others , you have to take the smooth with the rough ( I meant it that way round ;) )

You need to be very determined and quite bloody minded .

If you do go for it , good luck :hangloose
 
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