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Old 12-21-2008, 04:43 PM
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Diesel Mechanic

Entertaining the thought of a new career but want to make sure the salary would not be too much of a transition. What could I expect starting, 5 years later, etc. Also, what is the current demand for diesel mechanics in todays industry? Would definitely have to go back to school for it which isn't a problem. I am very interested in the field and have never been afraid to tear anything apart and rebuild... and just plain love the diesel world. Could even see myself starting a custom diesel shop after enough experience was acquired.

Any input, ideas, comments...?
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Old 12-21-2008, 04:52 PM
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Subscribing. Entertaing the thought of being a diesel mechanic after college.
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Old 12-21-2008, 06:09 PM
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Old 12-21-2008, 06:40 PM
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I can tell you a buddy of mine is in school right now for it.He is at Wyotech.I guess its a 9 month program roughly and about $35,000.I have one friend that went for heavy diesel Mechanic and he is making $16.50ph and gets about 45 hours a week in so whatever that figures into.He is 26 and has been doing it for about 4 years I think.I have another friend that is older and also a heavy diesel mechanic and is getting $17ph and gets about 50 hours a week in.Then I have another friend that is a diesel mechanic but could not land a job in the field so he is a pig farmer going on 10 years now.They say there is a high demand for both heavy and light duty diesel mechanics but I do not know any light duty mechanics.
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Old 12-21-2008, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chappy View Post
I can tell you a buddy of mine is in school right now for it.He is at Wyotech.I guess its a 9 month program roughly and about $35,000.I have one friend that went for heavy diesel Mechanic and he is making $16.50ph and gets about 45 hours a week in so whatever that figures into.He is 26 and has been doing it for about 4 years I think.I have another friend that is older and also a heavy diesel mechanic and is getting $17ph and gets about 50 hours a week in.Then I have another friend that is a diesel mechanic but could not land a job in the field so he is a pig farmer going on 10 years now.They say there is a high demand for both heavy and light duty diesel mechanics but I do not know any light duty mechanics.
Geesh... those numbers are a bit depressing. And 35K for 9 months of edumacation GOOD LORD! I mean I would love to be wrenching on diesels but would also like to make a decent living. Prolly be better off doing the custom shop thing... I'm sure thats not a walk in the park getting started but would be very enjoyable. Hmmm
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Old 12-21-2008, 07:02 PM
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yeh ,it is depressing.I know some people can make good money at it but I think they do a lot on the side also.There is definently more money to be made when you own your own business but you gotta start somehwhere I guess.I have 2 other friends going to college at Northwestern in Ohio for diesel mechanics light duty but I do not know how much they are paying for school.I know that it is a 2 year program there.
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Old 12-21-2008, 07:03 PM
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Im a student in the automotive world.. A normal college automotive degree is all you need in automotive field Im going to my local community college for my automotive degree its costing my like 7k all together and thats 2 years of school and its a normal college and i walk away with a degree not a certificate.. All those programs wyotech uti and theres other I just have a brain fart so i cant remember them all is like a joke kinda. Im learning the same thing they are but Im in a normal college taking my normal classes aswell english math and physics but what i walk away with in 1.5 years from today is a degree not just some plain old certificate piece of paper.. I can tell you this. The field sucks right now... Its horrible im not trying to scare you out of this im just telling you the truth. Nobodys hiring due to the fact of the big 3 automakers. You can make good money in this field. I know people that pull in over 100k a year as a mechanic. All depends where you work and what field and what type of pay system. You can get paid salary or book. Book pay you get paid by what the book says how long the job takes. Just so you get an idea. Lets say the book said pulling a transmission out of a 3500 dodge diesel was 5 hours pull it out and replace with new one. (im using dodge as an example because thats who i used to work for and thats what i did pull transmissions and replace.) But I could do it in 2.5 which i have.. I would get paid the full 5 hours for a job i was able to really do in 2.5 which isnt bad at 15+((15+ is a c tech pay)(25+ is like B tech)(35+ is A tech)roughly) a hour all those hours added up at the end of a week its not unheard of seeing guys with 60+ maybe 80 hours on a pay stub when they only worked 40 or i should say 48. So its good money. Just its dead right now. I know a friend that works for coca cola as a mechanic and hes doing good but he moved up in the field from being a mechanic to being the foreman at the shop too. But its really dead right now especial with dealerships closing and what happens to the guys that work at them that are the diesel techs they will have a higher chance at a job then you because they were in the field before. So by all means good luck if you decide to. I live in NY on long island there has been at least 20 dealerships close here and I been every where else looking for a job and i mean everywhere local shops and dealerships nobodys hiring due to the economy and the big 3 i got laid off due to this bad economy. Also tools are expensive lol I have a tool box thats not even that big or not even that many tools and it cost me 6k for it at my discount 12k with out my discount but you also pay for quality. If you have any questions more about this I will be glad to help. Like I said Im going through it right now my self.

Last edited by NYMustang50; 12-21-2008 at 07:08 PM.
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Old 12-21-2008, 07:22 PM
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NYMustang50 thanks for the informative post. Yeah I have heard similar things about making money on the side. I know of a guy that does a bunch of emergency type of work with farmers when they have problems during the harvest/plant seasons. Here in Indiana thats pretty much all there is...farmland I mean. I'm sure they pay a heck of a premium so they can get back to work quickly.

As for the economy and nobody hiring mechanics I can understand that but that also goes for a majority of other fields... not many places hiring anyone. Hope we can work our way out of it soon.

I guess its still the same ole thing if you wanna make good money and have fun doing it you gotta be working for yourself.
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Old 12-21-2008, 07:32 PM
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FWIW my buddy thats going to wyotech can get an associates degree if he goes for a year instead of the certificate which is 9 months,He hasn't made his mind up yet only because he is 19 and has a 3 month old he has to take care of.Apperantly these kids don't know what birth control is..The only thing I wonder there NYmustang50 is wouldn't it look better to be taught more hands on then in a classroom?I'm just speculating here.
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Old 12-21-2008, 08:02 PM
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I went through Cat's training program called think big. My local dealer sponsored me payed my tuition for school and A.S degree, and tools. We went over everything cat system, plus gen ed classes. It's a good program if you can get into it. But as whats stated above, very few of us have seen a full check this year. The money is there when your busy. Times are slow and dealer's are laying people off, or putting people on a modified work schedule, and its not looking good until this recession is over with. I'm in the truck engine division it's slow but nothing compared to earth moving. Yet it is still slow never the less. I'm picking up an Emergency Medical Technician job with an ambulance company on the side to make ends meet right now
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