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Hagerty
Hagerty Employee

DIY ... or don't: The beauty of the barter system

There has been a lot of working going on in my garage lately, and, comically enough, none of it has been on my own projects. Sure, I've made progress on the Model A and even on my Honda XR250R supermoto project, but most of the results are due to other people who have worked on these projects while my time is spent working on something belonging by yet another person.
https://www.hagerty.com/media/maintenance-and-tech/diy-or-dont-the-beauty-of-the-barter-system/
17 REPLIES 17
Kyle_B
Hagerty Employee

Story follow-up request: "the line in the sand"...the project/work you WON'T do for a friend haha - Brake lines? Transmission rebuild? C6 Clutch replacement? 😉
Kyle
Moderator

I mean, from here on out I’m not working on anything owned by you! That’s my line in the sand. Haha
Gary_Bechtold
Specialist

Seems like you are just making excuses now.
Tinkerah
Engineer

That list would be endless so I'd set a guideline: you'd have be able to carry it yourself, in one trip, from your vehicle to my work bench. Once there, I'm all in.
topside
Advanced Driver

A tip of the hat for lacing wheels - thought to be a lost art. Last I heard, that was an expensive proposition for sports cars, and the capability hard to find.
Used to always be working on each others' cars, and the camaraderie & wisecracks were worth as much as having all our toys up to snuff.
elvacarsdallas
Intermediate Driver

I had a sports car wheel that needed trueing, WOW I ended up buying a new one for about 15% over the quoted price. The orginal is in the trunk as a spare.
DaveP
Intermediate Driver

Well - I prefer to call it "doing a favor" not "bartering", b/c I suppose the word "bartering" will raise the ire of those IRS folks. OK - now back to doing my taxes (I guess that's why they call things that are a PIA "taxing").
Driver17
Intermediate Driver

Lacing wheels--did that, once, about forty years ago. I didn't end well.
On a tour of the Pennsylvania Harley plant, I saw some old woman crank out a wheel in what seemed like every minute. I retired from that work forever.
Replacing an Boxster engine, changing shocks on a 540i (a remarkably challenging job) or changing a power steering pump in a Cayenne (you don't want to know,) yup. No lacing wheels again, ever.
Smileamile
Intermediate Driver

Great story Kyle..thanks! My friend John, our Alfa GTV race car crew chief, is the same kind of guy as you. We swap expertise and labor all the time. The best part is the time spent together telling stories and sipping our favorite “new” bourbons to compare tastes. Life is best when we’re working together here in Kentucky or at the race tracks!
Gary_Bechtold
Specialist

Doing spokes does look like fun.
Beemerbob71
Pit Crew

This is great! I help a good friend with his BSA, Triumph and now his MGB-GT. In turn, he helps me with plumbing. Talk about win-win!
Tinkerah
Engineer

I don't have any of those connections anymore. In my youth the whole neighborhood would come together to coach, fix or salvage anything for any of us, and we'd convoy en masse anywhere if need be. We were a hilarious band of knuckleheads often making things worse before we made them better. As we've aged all those characters have grown up and now own nothing but late model vehicles and I've lost touch with most of them. Forty-plus years on I can now do just about anything in the mechanical and metalworking trades (except lace a wheel) right here at the house. I'm blessed to be self reliant but I do miss the camaraderie.

DUB6
Specialist

   Man, you're lucky.  Coffee beans for welding?  I'd gladly take that job.  I knew I wasn't ever gonna get that lucky when a guy walked into my shop, noticed the welding table, and said, "Oh, you weld?"  Because I knew that this guy only drinks coffee made with those free packets he gets from motel rooms when he travels for work.

   Many years past, I used to run with a bunch of guys who constantly traded work with each other.  We'd all gather at someone's garage or side yard and have at whatever needed done.  That doesn't seem to be the case so much anymore, but I think it's because a lot of that bunch got rich and just hires their work done nowadays.  I stayed poor, so I'm forced to do so much more of my own stuff.

   But I do have a really good pal who lives close to me and with whom I sometimes swap skills and/or just grunt labor.  He may the only person on earth that I will lend tools to and figure I'll get them back - often in better shape than when he borrowed them.  I try to do the same for him, and he seems to trust me (even told me where the key to his shop are hidden in case he's not around when I need something).  I'll share my coffee with THAT guy anytime!  😎

jaysalserVW
Advanced Driver

Great article, Kyle! It's an information trade, for sure. Camaraderie for sure. Sometimes we just cannot help someone due to time constraints, family, health, etc. Lack of knowledge to do the job? What's the next best avenue? Direct your Bud to other sources of help. That can take some time but has the advantage of spreading the vintage vehicle culture!
Kyle
Moderator

Are you reading my calendar? I literally have some thoughts to share about that later today...
hearsedriver
Detailer

bartering skills, lending tools, swapping parts, all good stuff. during the camaraderie, we also exchange tech info, neat tips on how to do certain tasks. how do you remove the kickstand spring from a motorcycle? extend the stand out, shove pennies or washers into the gaps of the spring in many places, and bring the stand back in. the pennies stop the spring from collapsing and you can remove it. celebrate with a beer. my buddy showed me that one.
61Rampy
Instructor

Kyle, you really need to sell me your Corvair! Or, I'd take the Model A instead. You obviously have way too many projects, and I'm more than willing to help you out. Sorry, cant barter, unless you want some arcane Corvair parts. I'm sure if you were interested, you could get a reply to me thru Hagerty.