Press Release (ePRNews.com) - CARLSBAD, Calif. - Oct 10, 2017 - John Gannon often tells customers that Mike’s Auto Body and Repair offers “old fashioned service with today’s technology.” Part of that technology includes the Spanesi equipment he has added to his growing business over the last two years.
The body shop owner and his wife, Elizabeth, purchased Mike’s Auto Body in 1999. Back then, it was a small facility in Spring Hill, FL, with just a few employees. The Gannons expanded the business and a second building was constructed on the original property in 2007. The collision center is in one building and the other houses the company’s service and mechanical department.
The team is preparing to open a second location in Brooksville in summer 2017. The modern facility will include the latest in tools, systems and products, featuring those from Spanesi. “We’re excited about building a shop from the ground up that has all of the Spanesi equipment,” said John.
I like the Spanesi frame machines a lot because you get full 360 accessibility to any part of the car that is damaged. They’ve been fantastic for us.
As one of the largest independent body shops serving Hernando and Pasco Counties, Mike’s Auto Body focuses on repairing late model vehicles. John said they take pride in providing quality, transparency and integrity. “The goal for every repair is for customers to have a positive experience,” he said. Utilizing Spanesi equipment has allowed the collision repair shop to diagnose and repair damaged vehicles according to OEM specifications quickly and effectively.
The shop learned about Spanesi equipment in 2015. After hearing about the benefits of the European-designed products and conducting some research, Gannon purchased six 106 frame benches with universal fixtures as well as a multibench. Since then, he has found many advantages using the equipment. “I like the frame machines a lot because you get full 360 accessibility to any part of the car that is damaged,” said John. “They’ve been fantastic for us.”
In addition to improving the shop’s cycle time, the frame machines have helped saved space. The previous frame machines used drive-on racks, which took up a good portion of the floor space. The new Spanesi frame machines offer the option of sitting flush with the floor so the team built pits for the new equipment. “I was able to spread them throughout the shop and everyone was able to get a little more elbow room,” he said.
The frame machines also have a track so a car has the option to move forward and backward for ease of suspension. “It’s definitely unique in the way you can move the car in the clamps on the tracks,” said John.
After experiencing success with the frame machines, John bought additional equipment, including Touch measuring systems and aluminum repair equipment. He said the innovative products offer excellent performance.
When it was time to decide what equipment to purchase for the new location in Brooksville, John knew immediately that they wanted to fill it with Spanesi equipment. When the facility opens, it will include two Spanesi downdraft spray booths, two downdraft prep stations, frame machines and welders. “The new shop is going to have everything from start to finish with Spanesi. We’re pretty excited,” said John.
Regarding training and support, he said Spanesi has been top-notch. “Our local rep, Steve Smith, is definitely a guy who is committed,” said John. “When he sells us products, he does everything to ensure that he is around until everyone is satisfied.”
The new spray booths will also be beneficial in the new shop. “We paint all of our cars in pieces as much as we possibly can,” said John. “It tends to fill up the booth quickly and this design is going to help with air flow.” Using waterborne paint, he said you need as much airflow as possible.
John said the shop employees are highly trained and certified technicians. Many of the 55 employees have been part of Mike’s Auto Body for a long time and have come up through the ranks. “We really work hard to keep our employees,” said John. “We try to add all of the perks that some of the bigger shops do as well.” This includes offering health insurance, a 401K plan and providing uniforms.
“That’s very important nowadays because there are not as many young people joining the industry as we would like,” he said. One way the shop is addressing the shortage of employees is by partnering with local technical schools. “It’s an important thing to do,” said John. “You have to start somewhere. If these kids aren’t going to college and they are going to work, they should start right away and learn a trade.”
In the meantime, John is focusing on opening his new shop while running the current location and providing excellent service to customers. “We stand behind all of our work and provide a lifetime warranty,” he said. “We are able to offer this warranty because we utilize the finest equipment available in the collision industry such as the equipment from Spanesi. We have been very impressed with their products and support.”
Mike’s Auto Body and Repair
Spring Hill & Brookville, FL
Company At A Glance…
Type: Collision Repair
Number of employees: 55
In Business Since: 1999
Number of Locations: Two
Number of DRPs: Eight
Combined Production Space: 60,000 square feet
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