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How many would?

Discussion in 'General Automotive Chat' started by T3nnant, Jan 14, 2014.

  1. T3nnant
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    T3nnant Member

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    First off let me say that I would have directed this towards the northeast people more, but for the purpose I suppose its a good idea to have everyone input.

    Iv been working in the electronics industry for a couple years now and iv been in production work all my life, anyone in production will know its a pain in the arse day in day out.
    Now iv always wanted to work within my own hours, and concentrate on quality and not quantity (The opposite of mass production)
    The company I work for is a small-ish size, only 6 people on the shop floor yet still turn over a couple million a year, our sister company employs 80+ on shop floor and makes 10X us
    We are basically being treat like dogs, our holidays are a shambles, our pay is below our sister company and so are all benefits (there are none, and iv looked!)

    A couple of us from work have been talking the past few days and as we all have a keen interest in cars and mechanical engineering, we have thought about a business opportunity. so id like to ask everyone's views, suggestions and any ways to improve or advice if you've started your own company.

    Our idea is basically a "rent a ramp" workshop, where we will have a range of vehicle ramps, and workspace for people to hire. or use our mechanical abilities to rent our time.
    We will supply some tools, ramps, jacks... all the basics
    possibly things like in house vendors like window tinting and vinals.
    detailing bays.
    im even thinking about a little café type of thing to grab a breakfast or even a drink.
    I have a great set of guys I can count on, one is an amazing CAD designer, I have a Mot/mechanic I can call on, a great detailing lad, a window tinter/graphic installer, I possibly can even get an electronics lad for things like sound systems and vehicle wiring.

    This could all come in time and id still be working full time, but id gladly give up all my spare time to get this off the ground and build it to what I can.

    As I say its still in the mind at the minute and "still a dream" but id love to dedicate my time to something like this!
    Im in the progress of arranging a meeting with a business advisor to help me get started and show me what I need.

    I hope you could take the time to give me your feedback/knowledge, but please go easy on me. Iv set a big challenge for myself and work mates.

    How many of you guys would be interested in something like this near you? what do you like the idea of and what could be improved?
    any experience with starting from scratch?

    Cheers guys, and gals.
    #1
  2. voorhees
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    voorhees Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    We have one here DIY Car and Motorcycle Servicing in Coventry - The Midlands Only DIY Garage

    I know a bloke who has his own workshop and it isn't always easy,he seems to make a living and is always stacked out with work,they even had a car come from France for an engine replacement which must mean he knows his stuff.
    I know some **** garages/bodyshops around here and they are still in business so you should do well as you sound like you have a good team.
    #2
  3. T3nnant
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    T3nnant Member

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    Thanks mate :)
    we used to have one called spanner it which was in darlington ( about 30 mile from me ) but I don't think many people were interested as it was ages away from them.
    Im not doing it to make huge profits, simply as more of a steady income and hobby.
    I just need the freedom.

    I guess as one part of the quest I need to do research on who would want this service and how many would use it.
    #3
  4. sssline
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    sssline Member

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    I believe there are similar things in place where people can rent a place to work and tools supplied. However just because it's been done before it doesn't mean it can't be done better. I like the idea of several services under one roof so as to speak. I guess custom depends on your technical skills and reviews. Bill Badger has people from all over the country and he is an active member on this forum, offering advice etc
    You live once and if you're being treated badly then set something up on the side and leave when you've moved your eggs to the next basket. They say it takes more than a year to establish a business and start making proper profit so it may take a while before you get there. It's an idea...and I like it. I hope your situation improves.
    #4
  5. Nilz
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    Nilz Defo worth the wait :)

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    I think its a good idea, if there are enough of you and you have the capital to do it, then why not, if you dont try you will never know.
    #5
  6. T3nnant
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    T3nnant Member

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    Thanks guys, getting some good feedback which is a plus! =D

    Update, I had a quick meeting with an advisor today to set out some floor work on what needs to be done.
    Basically I was told no grants are available, but if needs be I can ask for a company loan, which could be paid back and a more relaxed rate.

    She also helped me get a basic idea of a business plan together, which I will be trying to complete and improve on in the up coming months.
    Iv been in contact with a few different tool vendors to see what we can work on.
    and tonight iv found 3 possible units and 1 of which I feel very strongly about!
    Hopefully get an appointment to view at the weekend with a bit more information on pricing and what is allowed and what isn't.
    #6
  7. @udi A3
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    @udi A3 Active Member Site Sponsor

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    Personally I love the idea of the rent a ramp. If the rates were low enough and the banter/motivation was good on site, id use them.
    Im tied into a property where I cannot work on my drive, well heavy mechanics, but I am more than capable of most maintenance work.
    I'd even be willing to offer my services on call if local.
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  8. @udi A3
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    @udi A3 Active Member Site Sponsor

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    Regarding grants, try your local council, I was offered a 50/50 rebait on 3k spend, not a great deal for what your trying to do, but was good for me :D
    #8
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  9. superkarl
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    superkarl MAN OF STEEL

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    Ramps are far from cheap, thats all il say.
    Then the industrial space to house the ramps.
    Something that needs lots of cash from the owners, not just business loan.
    #9
  10. tom2
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    tom2 Member

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    I know some suppliers will offer decent discounts to startup businesses like this in exchange for advertising agreements on your premises, simply because if it does get well established their name will already have a right to be in your window, win win really.
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  11. kwistof
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    kwistof South East Events Moderator Regional Rep

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    Yeah it's a great idea if you have the interest.

    Maybe worth going across the other marques of car forums to see if they would also be interested and places like pistonheads and other multi marque forums.

    This was the original place that was set up near 5 years ago now

    Pit Start - Self Service Garage - 020 8827 1919

    I remember the story back in 2009 as I thought it would be great idea and would start springing up everywhere, but I suppose as you've found it's not that straight forward. Would be interesting to know how the insurance side of things would work as well - because you'd need some liability insurance being a business but with people carrying out there own work I do wonder how that would work out.

    Good luck though, you sound like you're doing it for all the right reasons e.g not purely to make money but more the help people in the same situation as you.
    #11
  12. Chrismawa
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    Chrismawa Member

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    YES! I live in the North East and I've been looking for somewhere like this as I know there are a few down south. I would defo use it. I've always thought there was a need for one in this area. Good luck with it mate.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2014
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  13. Brodster
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    Brodster Shark Performance In Scotland Regional Rep Site Sponsor

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    There was one in the Glasgow area somewhere and I believe its now shut down as afew S3 owners over that way had used it. No idea what happened to it.........maybe Turbonutz might know as he used it not that long ago.
    #13
  14. T3nnant
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    T3nnant Member

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    Thanks again for all the feedback, I never thought id have this much support and it means a lot!
    If anything its making me want to push harder.

    The couple of lads im in talks with are willing to put together a bit of cash themselves... I know this wont cover it but its a start.
    I think Jason, the CAD designer has managed to find someone willing to sell a brand new ramp for just over a grand.
    As for the idea of advertisement for half price tools or discount.. brilliant idea and id be very happy to do this!
    Im not a sell out so I wouldn't mind helping/premoting others.
    I will reach out to other forums eventually, simply because im on ASN I thought that would be a good place to start with.

    The more I write and the more I think about the whole thing, I get more and more excited.

    Thanks again guys.
    #14

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