Gilmore’s Collision Center
Location: Wichita Falls, TX
Type: Collision Repair
Facility Employees: 28
In business since: 1947
Number of Locations: 1
DRP Programs: All major providers
Production Space: 25,000 square feet
“Our body and paint technicians work together as a team with a team pay plan,” explained co-owner Greg Gilmore. “We feel it makes us more efficient when everyone is working toward the same goal. We also like being able to play to each technician’s strengths.”
Gilmore said if a technician is fastest or best at a certain skill, they will push related jobs his way.
“This allows us to shift our resources around,” he said. “If our paint shops get bottle-necked, the body tech can help out, or if reassembly is getting backed up, a paint technician can help get everyone caught up.”
Gilmore said they made a group decision to go to a team plan, and although they struggled in the beginning, it has made a huge difference.
“Technicians aren't arguing over hours, because they're all working toward the same goal,” he said. “They were working way too many hours before, and we knew we had to become more efficient. Now, everyone is making the same money or better and they definitely work fewer hours.”
Gilmore's Collision Center stands out by staying up-to-date with the latest products.
Adam Miller, painter at Gilmore’s Collision Center, enters in the speed and distance for IONITEC to cure the clear coat.
“The IONITEC Robotic Drying System by D&S Curing Solutions has been a game changer for us,” said Gilmore. “We have two down-draft spray booths, which previously we kept running all day long. Now, we run every job through the IONITEC booth because it's that much faster and cleaner.”
Gilmore’s can complete three paint jobs using the IONITEC booth in the same time it took to complete one in the other booth.
“Our other booth has pretty much turned into an extra prep station because we just don't use it,” said Gilmore. The IONITEC booth is especially helpful when using water-based paint in such a humid climate.
“At times in the past, we'd have to run a bake cycle for 30 minutes just so the base coat would dry,” he said. “Now, we just run the IONITEC arm over, and in five minutes it's ready to clear. After we clear it, we run it back over for another five to six minutes, then once it cools, we can immediately start touching it and reassembling.”
Gilmore said that using the IONITEC booth has saved him, on average, $1,500 a month on gas.
“It only heats the panels that we're painting, so we don’t have to heat every square inch of our booth,” he explained. “I'm definitely reaping the benefits of going green.”
Gilmore's Collision Center also has the capacity to work on aluminum vehicles, including the new aluminum Ford F-150.
“We work on a lot of trucks here in Texas,” said Gilmore, “Including the new aluminum Fords, so we are prepared and ready to put them back on the road.”
When asked about their affiliation with insurance companies, he said although his shop is a DRP, they've gotten more selective with their programs over the years.
The IONITEC arm by D&S Curing Solutions cures the clear coat inside Gilmore’s Collision Center.
“Some of them don't fit us anymore as far as the way we like to take care of our customers, as well as our overall business model,” he said. “We are all about making sure we repair the vehicle in the safest and best way possible for the customer.
“Our guys treat these cars like one of their family members will be driving in it when it leaves,” Gilmore said. Gilmore relies on word of mouth, and some Facebook promotion to advertise.
“We also support the community as far as local school sports teams,” said Gilmore. “We won’t say no to any of those kids.”
They offer an app on the Gilmore’s Collision Center website which allows customers to get an estimate from the comfort of their home or office.
“They can download the app to their smart phone, take pictures, put in the VIN and we can get them a quote,” explained Gilmore. “Obviously we can’t always see all of the damage from a picture, and we explain that to the customer, but it does give them an idea of the cost so they can decide if they want to file an insurance claim or just pay out of pocket.”
As far as his involvement with other industry members, Gilmore has been a part of the BASF Performance Group for eight years, and is currently president.
“We've found nothing is better than meeting up with other good body shop owners and sharing information, and being around owners that push you,” he explained. “We set goals and hold each other accountable to excel. It's been great for our business.”
For more information about D & S Curing Solutions, visit www.dscuringsolutions.com or call 917-563-3429.