Author Topic: Calling All Mechanics! (Career Questions)  (Read 1680 times)

2Birds1Stone

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Calling All Mechanics! (Career Questions)
« on: March 06, 2016, 05:48:09 PM »
Hello fellow MMM friends :)

I currently work in IT sales, I currently enjoy it and the pay is good. As I reach FI I would like to learn a new trade and transition into part time/ hobby work.

As a kid I absolutely LOVED building, maintaining, and racing RC cars. Both gas and electric. I enjoying wrenching as much as racing. Being an adult now and a car guy I am always window shopping cool cars (delaying gratification on purchasing something until I'm further along in my "accumulation phase").

I figured learning the trade of auto mechanic could serve a double purpose. Pleasure of working on, restoring, maintaining my own cars (would love to get into Autocross racing and do a few high performance track days a year).

I also am interested in this trade as a part time or side income during FIRE.

So I guess this begs the question for you experienced mechanics.

Do you like what you do? As a car guy and someone who enjoys working with their hands, do you think this is a viable "career change" for someone entering FIRE?

Is this the type of gig that could provide easy side income during FIRE? Would a shop hire a mechanic for 2-3 days a week? Is it difficult to find side work privately? Doing routine maintenance for example out of your own garage?

How would you recommend going about the training to become a mechanic? Trade school? Community college program? Apprenticeship at an established shop?

This is something I am seriously considering for when I get sick of the cubicle life, which I predict will be 2-3 years from now.

2Birds1Stone

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Re: Calling All Mechanics! (Career Questions)
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2016, 09:27:06 AM »
Monday morning *bump*

2Birds1Stone

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Re: Calling All Mechanics! (Career Questions)
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2016, 07:30:12 PM »
Will update this post tonight. Out and about right now. I do have some advice and it's mostly positive.

Hello Craig, thank you for your follow up. I really appreciate you taking the time to give a well thought out response.

Currently I don't enjoy fixing cars. I just have a strong feeling that I would given my past hobby wrenching and enjoying learning how to do things with my hands. I have yet to do any real work on an actual car aside from very minor stuff.

You bring a great point up about part time mechanics work. Definitely wouldn't want to take 2 weeks to do some sort of job that takes 3-4 days just because the mechanic works every other day!

I wouldn't want to be "the lube guy" long term but if it was a way to get my foot in the door and learn the basics than it could be an option.

My biggest hurdle right now is renting, a basement apartment nonetheless so I don't really have space for tools, jacks, stands etc. I won't be living here forever though and eventually should have a place with a garage or at the very least a decent sized storage shed.

I am going to heed your advice and start learning on my own car. I am sure with a service manual and youtube I could learn to do most basic work myself and take it from there. My biggest issue is gong to be finding space for the tools/jack. My apartment is a 1 bedroom, and already cramped a bit.

Are you a mechanic by trade? How do you enjoy it?