Monday, 04 July 2011 13:59
IBIS delegates given an eye opening insight into
technology and repair methodology.
Travel agents pitching Barcelona
may have to add a new
angle. Famous as the home of
the world’s best soccer team,
a beautiful international port
and home to the Olympic Games in 1992,
Barcelona now has another claim to fame;
the meeting place of some of the top minds
in the global collision repair industry.
Three hundred delegates, 24 countries
represented, and a fantastic networking opportunity.
IBIS 2011, held at the Hotel Arts
in Barcelona, proved a major success.
Keynote speaker Kelly McDonald took
delegates on a guided tour of demographics,
cultural shifts and how this will
impact on the world of accident repair. She
told the audience, “Businesses now must
think global but execute locally.”
Rob Smale of Ageas stirred plenty of discussion
with his “different” perspective on
the insurer/repairer relationship. “Insurers
don’t get up in the morning to give repairers
work – we are a customer like any other.”
She also spoke of the need to focus on “flow”
within the repair cycle and remove all obstacles
possible. “We don’t need websites
telling customers how their car is doing if
you deliver on a promise. Focus on economies
of flow within the business.”
Delegates were also given an eye
opening insight into the technology and
repair methodology BMW has developed
to create efficient repair practices and procedures.
Michael Geiger told delegates,
“It’s not possible for bodyshops to repair
all brands of vehicle. Why do dealerships
outsource body repair but do servicing
in house? Simple: high cost and huge investment.”
An interesting warning came
from a Spanish facility owner in the audience
who claimed collision repair facilities will soon have to choose body repair or
refinish as the investment to do both is
simply too high.
Day two of the conference commenced
with a look at business practices in different
countries, specifically China, and how businesses
must adapt to match the culture.
Georg Tautz revealed some startling _ gures
that three in 100 people in China drive a car
and 70 percent of new car owners are driving
for the very first time. He also emphasized
the rapid growth of China by highlighting
that VW has sold more cars in China in Q1
201 than in the whole of Europe. Tautz explained,
“China likes to learn but does not
like to be educated. People like to be told
what to do and do it.”
Conference director, David Lingham
was joined by Tony Aquila via a live video
link from the US for a question and answer
session on culturizing business.
“Localize to local markets,” said Aquila.
“People want to know the mission, want
it clear and be told they did a good job.
That doesn’t change in any market. You
always need core values within the business.”
Aquila also discussed the idea that
you should build value within any market
entered and not focus on taking from that
market. He also warned, “Don’t go in thin;
be prepared to finance over your mistakes,
you will make them.”
Representing the collision repair sector
was Nationwide’s Michael Wilmshurst
and Sam Mercanti, CEO and President
of Carstar Automotive Canada. Both
discussed how they see the future for repairers
explaining how they both see
major change necessary over the coming
“The current UK model is not sustainable,”
said Michael in reference to the
general state of the UK repair sector. He
used the analogy: “In a plane there are
people in the front, others in the middle
and others in the back. Different prices,
same plane, same destination,” to describe
how he sees repairers differentiating their
services. In speaking specifially about Nationwide’s
business model, he claimed, “In
my opinion, we are half the size we need
to be to satisfy the market.”
Sam Mercanti also spoke openly of
how he sees the future for repairers. “You
cannot afford to take your eye off the ball,
our customers are constantly changing,”
said Mercani. He also warned delegates,
“It costs a lot of money to not look after
IBIS is much more than a conference, it
is the meeting point for the industry. The
inclusion of a welcome party and international
dinner offered the chance to network
in a more relaxed business environment
as well as enjoy the local surroundings.
Collision Repair magazine is the official
Publishing Partner for Canada.
Last Updated on Monday, 04 July 2011 14:01
Monday, 27 June 2011 16:31
Key elements of the fifth annual WIN Conference.
The fifth annual Women’s Industry Network (WIN) Conference in San Diego brought together over 160 women from all segments of the collision repair industry. The first day included a keynote address on “Strategy, Leadership and the Soul” by Jennifer Sertl, founder and president of Agility 3R. Greg Horn, VP of Industry Relations at Mitchell International, presented an industry update detailing current trends as well as insights into the effects of the Japan earthquake and tsunami and thoughts on electric and micro vehicles hitting the US market. Afternoon breakout topics included Social Media, Leadership from the Inside Out and Personal Branding.
The ten conference scholarship winners were also recognized, including the two scholarships
given in the name of WIN’s Diamond Sponsor, AkzoNobel. “AkzoNobel led the initiative to create awareness about the contributions of women within the collision repair industry and has also been an ardent supporter of the WIN Association since its beginning,” said Laura Costello Director of Marketing for AkzoNobel Automotive and Aerospace Coatings Americas. We are honored to have two of the 2011 WIN student scholarships presented in our name. It is extremely gratifying to see an industry put practices in place to sustain opportunities for enrichment and future growth.”
Mary Kunz was announced as this year’s Cornerstone Award winner,. The award is given each year to a board member that exemplifies the values and ideals of WIN. In addition, a Cornerstone Scholarship was awarded to Jessica Crowley, a collision repair student at the College of Western Idaho, who will receive a donation from WIN to further her collision repair education.
The day concluded with recognition of WIN’s 2011 Corporate Sponsors which include: “We are thankful to each and every one of our sponsors. Their support of WIN is instrumental to our mission of engaging women in the collision repair industry,” said Kim White, WIN’s chair.
Day two started off with the Annual Scholarship Walk Presented by Enterprise. Over 100 women took to the streets of San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter and raised over $5,000 through individual and corporate donations. The funds will be directed toward WIN’s various scholarship programs.
Following the walk, attendees were treated to a humourous, positive and thought-provoking keynote address on “Using Your Feminine Force for Good Car-ma” by Lauren Fix, recognized automotive and lifestyle expert and owner of Automotive Aspects.
Dr. Sara Mednick, assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California-San Diego delivered an insightful presentation on sleep patterns and the benefits of napping on memory and productivity. The afternoon continued with breakout topics on Hot Button Employment Issues and Lean in the Front Office.
The conference concluded with a panel discussion on Emerging Technologies & Repairability moderated by Ruth Weniger of Airbag Solutions. Panelists included: Sandee Lindorfer, Allstate Insurance; Jamison Cummings, Tesla Motors; Derek Naidoo, Auto Body Speed Shop; and Mark Olsen, VeriFacts Automotive. The panelists and attendees discussed hybrids, new safety systems and other new technologies facing the collision repair industry and the challenges and opportunities they present.
The fifth annual WIN Conference was sponsored by AkzoNobel, Allstate, ASE, BASF, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, DuPont, State Farm Insurance, Hertz, 3M, Sterling Autobody Center, Geico, Fix Auto, Carstar, PPG, Marco’s Collision Center, CSi Complete, ABRA Auto Body & Glass, LKQ, CAPA, Finishmaster, Symphony Advisors, 1-800-Radiator, Sherwin Williams, Mitchell, and CCC Information Services.
Monday, 20 June 2011 19:45
It’s a critical component of getting a return on your investment.
The paint spraybooth in a collision repair facility represents the single largest capital investment for the owner and its effective operation is one of the biggest concerns for every shop. A top quality spray and cure spray booth can cost over $100,000 so maintaining them is critical to make sure that investment pays off. Two experts in the field of spraybooth maintenance are Don Ives, “The Booth Man” and Keith Hayward, “The Filter Guy”. Don Ives services spraybooths throughout southern Ontario and Keith Hayward provides the filters that every booth requires. Here is what they have to say about effective spraybooth maintenance.
Spraybooths are generally designed to meet or exceed code at 100 feet per minute of air flow. This protects the painter by drawing overspray away from him and ensures that overspray is drawn to and trapped by the exhaust filters. With clean fans, stacks, and filters, all standard spraybooths will run with good air flow. When filters are clogged, either with dirt/dust at the air intake (ceiling) filters or with overspray it the exhaust (pit) filters, air flow is restricted. Other factors that effect air flow include overspray build up on fan blades and inside the exhaust stack.
Booths work best when they are running at slightly positive pressure. They should basically be balanced between air entering and exiting the booth, and by making them slightly positive, the extra air will be forced out any cracked seals around doors or any small gaps that inevitably exist. If a booth has negative pressure it will be drawing unfiltered air though those same cracks and gaps and end up landing on the car and fouling the paint job.
In downdraft spraybooths a good diffusion media filter is required. These filters usually come in blanket form and cover the entire ceiling of the booth. This type of media diffuses the air flow, forcing it to flow evenly across the face of the entire filter, creating a nice uniform air flow throughout the booth. Without diffusion media, the air would blast down through the booth under the air source, while the rest of the booth remains stagnant.
Clean air is critical to a good finish. Diffusion media is very efficient so it will stop all the dirt and dust that will cause problems in the finish. The key to good air quality is to ensure that the air coming into the spray area is forced through the filter.
When a booth is in the purge cycle, especially when it involves waterborne coatings, temperature must be maintained at the paint manufacturers recommended temperature.
Regular Maintenance Intervals
Most booths require a good maintenance cleaning every 1000 hours (or less) of operation depending on use. The filters need to be changed out when a service/cleaning is done and also in between service as required. A basic service includes cleaning the stack and the fan, the exhaust pit and changing the filters. Also cleaning the burner, greasing motor and bearings is required. A more thorough service also includes things like replacing door seals, cleaning light fixture glass, replacing light bulbs, cleaning booth walls and floor, re-caulking any gaps in the booth and anything else to bring it back to ground zero.
According to Don Ives, the Booth Man, “I find the biggest problem with maintenance is that most shops over extend the scheduling of booth cleaning. It is like car maintenance: if it doesn’t get done the car won’t perform to its optimum level.”
Waterborne Finish and Overspray
Waterborne coatings present two problems for spraybooths. First of all, the time, temperature and air flow required for effective curing of waterborne coatings all need to increase. Many spraybooths have now been retrofitted with air accelerators to improve air circulation.
Ives notes that “Air flow is critical to a good finish. It a booth is not maintained by cleaning and changing filters regularly, the new waterborne coatings are more likely to glaze over or sag. Air accelerators help with these problems but they do not eliminate the need for a well maintained booth.”
Secondly, waterborne overspray particles are comparatively huge, so they clog filters faster. “If a solvent based particle is the size of your fingernail, a waterborne particle is the size of your fist,” says Hayward. “Ideally exhaust overspray collection filters load from back to front, or bottom to top in a pit. With large waterborne particles the same filters will “surface load” or “blind.” When a filter blinds over, only the first 10 percent or so of the filter is being used. Over the years shops have trended towards more expensive filters that depth load, last longer and are changed out less frequently. However with filter blinding, generally the least expensive filter is best because it will need to be changed out much more often. By changing cheaper filters more often, material costs will be about the same but unfortunately labour costs and “hassle factor” will increase.”
Waterborne clearly presents challenges to spray booth maintenance but with regular booth cleaning, improved air flow, and more effective exhaust filters, those problems are solved.
Monday, 23 May 2011 11:29
Shellie Andrews has the qualities to succeed.
Shellie Andrews is the Operations Manager of Dana’s Collision
Center. She’s also the latest addition to the board
of the Women’s Industry Network (WIN).
Dana’s Collision Center is owned and operated by
Andrews’ father, Dana Alexander Although Andrews
works primarily in the office, she started out in the wash bay and
the mixing room. When it comes to WIN, Andrews has been involved
with the organization since before it was even founded.
This may seem contradictory, but it’s nonetheless true.
“My dad is a big proponent of education and advancement. He
found out that the Assured Performance Network was putting on
a women’s conference for their members, and he asked if I would
like to go,” says Andrews. “That event turned out to be the precursor
of WIN. It got the ball rolling.”
Many who attended that conference ended up forming the core of
WIN. They’ve kept coming back because they’ve found lasting value in
the organization. “I loved the business, loved being in the shop, but
I had never been much of one for making myself visible outside
the shop,” says Andrews. “It’s given me the confidence to have my
say and let my knowledge come through.”
Kim White is the Chair of WIN. She has gotten to know Shellie
Andrews over the last year through her work with the organization.
“We had an opening on the board that needed to be _ lled, and we
immediately thought of Shellie,” says White. “She had already demonstrated
a commitment and a passion for what we are doing.”
In addition to her passion and commitment to WIN, White
also mentions Andrews’ central quality.
“In one word, she’s thoughtful,” says White. “When you ask her
a question, she takes the time to think it through, think through
all the ramifications, good, bad and otherwise. She’s not one to
jump to a quick decision. She likes to look at all the angles.”
There have certainly been challenges along the way for Shellie
Andrews. As she herself notes, there is a certain stigma attached
to being the boss’s daughter.
“Some people knew and some people didn’t. There’s an advantage to
having a different last name. In fact, we have one team member who
worked with me for about two years before he found out,” says Andrews.
“I think there still is a perception with some people that I don’t
know as much because I’m female. Now, it’s true that I don’t know as
much about repair as the techs do, but there’s a perception with some
people that I don’t know as much about the management side as a man
would, and that’s not true.”
Andrews wouldn’t hesitate before recommending collision repair as
a career choice for the right person.
“If that’s what you want to do, I say go for it,” says Andrews. “We have
a female technician at the shop right now. She came to us right between
high school and college, and she’s starting on her second block of college
training this spring. I think that you have something you want to do,
then you should follow it. It’s not just for females. It’s anybody.”