I have over 30 years’ experience in the Automotive Industry. My experience ranges from hands on diagnostics and repair, rebuilding, restoring and inspecting all makes and models of foreign and domestic vehicles including hot rods. I began going into the shop with my father when I was very young. My father was a foreign car specialist from Italy. I learned the ins and outs from this man. When he came to the US he began working for Toyota then in a very short time owned independent shops and gas stations, this is where I grew up, at the shop.
At a very young age I learned all the tools and what they were used for, then spent time in the solvent tank, cleaning parts, learning their names and function. Until I learned, I wasn’t allowed to touch a vehicle. I started from the bottom up as my father’s apprentice, fixing tires, services and assisting. From classic American and Foreign cars to building my first car at the age 13. A 1970 Pontiac Firebird Formula 400, my first opportunity to rebuild an engine, transmission, suspension and brake system along with having the body, paint and interior done and road ready by 16.
At 17 I finished High School and moved to Buenos Aires Argentina, where my mother is from, to study Mechanical Engineering. While attending school I worked for a long-term friend of the family also from Italy who owned an automotive repair shop. There I learned more than I ever thought I would about Foreign cars and some American Classics. Renault, Peugeot, Citroen, Fiat (including the original 500s), Alfa Romeo, Lancia to name a few then onto 1940s Cadillac, 1960s Ford Falcons and Fairlanes and Chevy Novas. We became quite creative with the American cars as parts were hardly ever available. Those experiences really helped me in the future to think before shooting from the hip when it came to cars.
I returned to the US in the late 80s and enthusiastically rekindled the family name reopening independent repair shops. I labeled myself as a Foreign Car Specialist, which I was, yet my love has always been American Classics and Muscle Cars. I continued to make a name for myself. Over the years I worked on Rolls Royces belonging to the Aliotos, Ferraris including a barn find Dino but themost memorable was rebuilding 1955, 56, 57 TBirds, a 1962 Chevy II, a 1970 Barracuda, a 1970 Plymouth Superbird and numerous Fords from the 1960s.
Some of my own vehicles over the years, partial to complete rebuilds or modified were 1928 Dodge Fast Four, 1949 Ford Bullet Nose, 1964 El Camino, 1964 ½ Mustang, 1967 Mustang GT, 1967 GTO, 1969 Buick Riviera and my recent favorite a 1959 Chevy Apache Fleetside which was completely modified.
I sold my last automotive shop in July of 2015. It was the largest I had owned over the years. It consisted of 10-12 employees at any given time. I was hands on and at the same time trained many apprentices including my son.
Currently, while still inspecting vehicles for prepurchase, I’m also a licensed insurance agent in the State of CA – Lic#0E77509.