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Questions - and a Few Answers
Do you only run open wheel cars?
No. We concentrate on Formula cars and Sports Racing cars but we have run and service front engine cars as well.
Do you only run amateur events?
No. We actually prefer pro racing. As our friend Jim Edwards says, "The officials in pro racing aren't any better than the ones in amateur racing, but you get paid to put up with them!"
What do you charge for your services?
We try to strike a balance keeping racing affordable for our clients while staying in business ourselves. Our shop rate is $75 per hour. Consulting fees for engineering work at the track or some other remote location is $600 per day plus expenses.
Do you sell parts?
We sometimes obtain parts or consumables for our clients as a service but do not stock these items or mark them up. Many times we refer racers to the proper outlets for the parts they need. We do sell exceptional items not available through normal parts suppliers like GoPro camcorders, Hoosier racing tires and Motul fluids and libricants.
What kind of welding do you do?
We use the TIG welding process, sometimes called heli-arc. This is a very controlled and precise welding method generating excellent results for almost anything on a race car. We save the MIG welding for the trailer.
Are your welders certified?
Yes. Everyone doing welding on a race car at Metcalf Racing is ASME certified.
Do you do machine work?
Yes. We have recently bought a Victor engine lathe and a Hurco vertical milling machine to complement our smaller machine tools. Robert grew up in a machine shop and put himself through college as a machinist. The last real job he had before going racing full time was as a machinist for Texas Instruments. We can handle any machine work, no matter how complex, which does not require CNC equipment.
What about sheet metal work?
We can do complex sheet aluminum race car parts here in our shop. This includes monocoque fabrication and repair as well as aluminum wing fabrication and re-skinning.
Do you do gearbox setup?
Not ourselves. We send our gearbox work to the professionals at Taylor Race Engineering.
What about building engines?
As a general rule, we do not build engines. We usually leave that to the builders who have the proper equipment and expertise on specific engine types. In rare instances, if we have an engine which works perfectly but has some time on it, we might do a simple freshen.
How many cars can you support at a race?
Some shops try to take as many cars as possible to a race to maximize their income. We feel that too many cars stretches the track-side manpower too thin reducing the quality of service the customers receive. We normally only take two cars to a race. With enough warning we can arrange for a larger crew at the track and accommodate more.
Do you only attend races in the south-central area?
No. We actually enjoy road trips to other areas where we can run tracks like Road America, Laguna Seca or Watkins Glen.
How can I know how much the work on my car will cost?
As mentioned above we charge $75 an hour for shop labor. For relatively simple service jobs such as preparation for a race or minor crash damage repair we estimate charges before we begin work. If we encounter something unexpected, we stop and call the client to inform him of what we have found and of a revised estimate to fix the problem. Payment is due when the car is picked up.
What about longer term jobs like a race car restoration?
For jobs we expect to last several months, we try to make a very general estimate but stress that we may be off by a substantial margin either way. That's the nature of restorations. We receive deposits from our clients for a minimum of $3000 for these jobs and stop work when the deposit has been used up to discuss with the client what has been done and what we can expect in the future. This provides good communication so that we both know what to expect.
What do you do when work is stopped on a project for a period of time?
Sometimes clients encounter events which change their plans for a time. It might be a family crisis, a downturn in business or just a change of plan. When this happens during a restoration or other long term project, we stop work on the car and charge only for storage as if it were one of the cars we normally only store for our clients. When our client is ready to proceed, we resume work on his car.
What do you charge for race car storage?
$150 a month.
If I have a question about what I should do to my race car, how should I proceed?
Just email us your concern. We will use our experience to help you find the right way to go. Please give us your email and phone and let us know which method is best to contact you to discuss the issue so we can come up with a solution.
Didn't find your answer here?
Contact us with your question. We'll get you an answer.
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