I feel it’s always nice to know why someone is doing what they are in life, and being in this field is no different. In my opinion, people have gifts, or callings, we all know someone who loves to sing but it’s really not their calling. Some are called to this, have a gift or knack for mechanical problems, or a mental aptitude for understanding how to disassemble and reassemble something in order to fix it. I also find it usually follows family lineage.
In my situation, my brother and I always had access to my dad’s tools. He is a Master Tractor Trailer Mechanic by trade, and is still in the trade all these years. We were always taking vehicles apart before there was a “Google” to learn it. We were pulling motors at ages 15-16. Our fastest time back then if I recall correctly was three hours to remove a motor from a Caprice Classic, and install it in a Monte Carlo. It was just something bred into us. From clutches, to spark plugs, to even one time in the military I replaced a rear-end in my car in my apartment complex when it blew, a place that technically didn’t allow oil changes.
I graduated from High School with honors from the 11th grade. When I took the military ASVAB I scored a 99% for Mechanical Ability. Though they wanted me to be a mechanic for them I knew that doing so would kill the passion I have for doing this type of work, and ended up enlisting in the Infantry instead.
I guess my point to this is I have been in this field for quite some time. I find this is where my calling and passion has lead me……..Of course it would be impossible to list every single vehicle, excavator, truck, marine, or otherwise machine I’ve ever worked on.
For Maseratis, the story is pretty simple. My first Maserati was a 2002, Spyder. Within about a year I ended up personally replacing the F1 clutch, and actuator (and a few other things as you’ll read below). The car had about 20,000 miles on it. I also find because I seem to be called to this, I seem to almost never get out of the situations easy. Moreover, I’m usually never satisfied with the diagnosis or mechanical dedication of the people working on my equipment/vehicles. Originally, I was towing the vehicle to a high end shop to put it on a scanner. It was diagnosed as having actuator potentiometer problems which wasn’t the case.
I still remember the look on the Ferrari Tech’s and Shop Manager’s face, bringing that car in when I was finished. First, the Shop Manager was always nice, he runs a business so of course tried to be polite. As with all Techs they are a little more transparent with what they think even when they try to hide it this Tech was no different.
In this situation, I already told the Shop Manager I would be performing the work, I just needed the scan tool to access the F1 system. I just don’t think he knew the extent of the work I was going to do before I flat bedded the Maserati back to him.
After shaking the Ferrari Tech’s hand I asked him to reset the clutch wear parameter, and put the car into self learn. Of course he wanted to know what I did to the car. “I replaced the clutch, had it dynamically balanced, Spigot bearing, F1 position sensor, throw-out bearing. I also replaced the Actuator, accumulator, F1 pump, solenoid body, or essentially the entire power unit.” He looked at me like he was going to call a tow truck to junk the car.
Again what people don’t realize in these situations is I grew up doing this. It would be akin to a surgeon having his young son in the OR for most of his life till he leaves home. The kid will know more on a daily basis than most leaving medical school. It doesn’t mean I or anyone else has all the answers on any given day. It means we possess the craft to find them.
Long story short, the Tech did what I asked, he was quite surprised in fact everything checked out. Then he smiled and asked me if I wanted to go for a ride. “Sure, you drive”. We went through a problem free exercise of putting that car through it’s paces. By the time we got back I feel he had a new found respect for what I had accomplished.
Afterwards, I purchased my own scan tool, and began working on these cars myself. Since that time I’ve worked on Maserati Gran T’s, Gran Sports, Quattroportes, Ferraris, Lambo (E gear system is basically identical to the F1), as well as the the normal cars and diesel trucks you see on the road everyday. Most will probably know my name from Maseratilife.com where I am and have been a moderator for the last two years, giving free technical support, and advice to anyone I can.