Some say my favorite mechanic is the most expensive in the area. I say he's the best bargain. Sure, his hourly rate is a bit higher than most, but he's worth it. He knows his stuff, does top quality work, is very fast, stands by his work, and is honest. His motto: Quality only hurts once.
Over the years we've developed a relationship. We enjoy talking. He was very patient with my early experiments with waste vegetable oil conversions of diesel engines. I leaned a lot from him.
I don't know how much longer he's going to be my mechanic. The guy just bought a lot of land about 25 miles deeper in the woods than I am. It has woodlots for firewood, year round running surface water, and good solar exposure. The guy bought the land with cash, and is putting in a road and a cabin. Much of work is being bartered.
Over the years he's asked me a lot of questions about off-grid living. Now he's putting that knowledge to use. I answered some more off-grid questions for him today. He's at the serious planning phase. He has a small solar electric system and plans on scaling up.
He tells me he 's going to do some farming. The house in town and garage will be going up for sale soon. The guy gets it. He's moving on to his Plan B.
I'm going to miss him as a mechanic, but I'm glad he'll still be a friend.