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I grew up in the southern suburb of Boone County, near Columbia, Missouri. I'm a hard worker and honest person (always was and always will be). I have old-fashioned Christian beliefs and I live a quiet, peaceful life. I don't consume alcoholic beverages, smoke or do illegal drugs (never have and never will; I guess you could say I live a boring life.) I have always had a clear head, and I live a clean and healthy life. I perform repairs on small engine equipment, fabricate various garden tractor pulling parts and perform machine work in our shop/garage since 1982. I work for everything I have. Nothing is given to me. I seen a lot of odd things happen to small engines and I know what I'm talking about in my websites. I know everything about small engines, garden pulling tractors and pulling sleds, pull-back and self-propelled. My intuition with small engines is extraordinary. It's like I have a psychic connection with them. They're the only things on my mind and the only things I think about everyday. There's nothing anyone can ask me about a problem with a typical small engine, garden tractor pulling engine, garden pulling tractor, or tractor pulling sled that I couldn't honestly and accurately answer. If I can't answer the questions, then there obviously are no answers. Some people ask me if I read books on the type of repairs I perform and parts that I make, and I tell them, "Read books? I write the books!" (My websites.)
And the reason I don't make any YouTube videos on how to perform certain engine repairs is because I stutter. But when I talk on the phone with customers, I do the best I can to get my words out. Some people rudely hang up on me. But I talk better in person than on the phone. And I learned that as I got older, I don't stutter whatsoever when I'm angry or upset. I get loud and I always say the right thing that leaves the other person speechless. I haven't lost an argument yet.
I hate stuttering! Personally, I don't like to talk about this, but I was bullied by the other (spoiled brat) kids in grade school because I stuttered. Some even wanted to fight me. This all happened after my older 5th grade female teacher (Mrs. Grooms) bullied me in front the entire class. She must have been a witch too, because she looked just like an ugly, evil witch, scary-looking, as they appear in the movies. I think she put a curse on me. The kids were nice to me before, then most of them looked at me differently after what she did. That was around 1972, and I was about 12 years old then. Nobody cared or would do anything about bullying in schools back then. I still feel uncomfortable and cringe every time a kid with their parents (customers) and how they hear the way I talk. I'm thinking their kid will make a comment about the way I talk or might laugh at me. Most people go through life with blinders on. Seeing only part of the picture of life. But stuttering has allowed me the rare privilege to see life from an entirely different perspective.
Anyway, I knew that I had to get on with my life, and try to enjoy life to the best of my ability, so in 1988, I became very interested in garden tractor pulling. We (my dad and I) visited some of the local garden tractor pulls in central Missouri to get acquainted with the sport of pulling. In 1989 I built my first garden pulling tractor. It was a model 100 Cub Cadet 30 Cubic Inch (12hp) Super-Stock and I still have it today. A year later I built a second pulling tractor, a model 100 Cub Cadet 10hp Super-Stock. But after a few years, the 10hp class died out in this area and in 2006, I converted it into a competitive stock 10hp for my brother's son to pull.
In 1992, we had a falling out with the garden tractor pulling association that we were pulling with (now defunct club that operated in central Missouri) and decided to start a new garden tractor pulling association in Missouri, named Hot Rod Garden Tractor Pullers Association. So we built our own self-propelled motorized garden tractor pulling sled and acquired all the necessary equipment (weighing scale, measuring devices, etc.). Our sled is named Track Master. It's recognized by many pullers as one of the best sleds in the nation.
I own three garden pulling tractors and a motorized garden tractor pulling sled, which I built by myself with the tools in our shop. I did build two very competitive small wheel mini-rods with a Chevy V6 engine, but I sold them after a few years due to lack of interest in starting this type of class in my area. I learned the hard way how to build my tractors so they'll be truly competitive. I fabricate most of the parts for them in my shop. That's one of the reasons why I created my pulling tips web sites. To help other pullers to do the same. Besides, you learn a lot by fixing things yourself, and if it performs well, personal pride goes into the projects you build. It's like mental therapy when you can fix something yourself, especially when you improvise.
If you've wondered how I received my knowledge, well, actually, I'm self-taught. I didn't go to college or receive formal training. When I was younger, I asked older small engine mechanics and machinists who lived locally questions, bought some books and the rest, I figured out by myself. I guess I'm just one of those guys who know how to put scientific knowledge to practical use. I know how to repair new engines, but I also know how to repair old engines and equipment. And I know what makes them run right. As a matter of fact, I receive emails and phone calls from high school AG teachers and college professors who visit my web sites, asking me about how to repair certain mechanical things. This is no joke! I would think these guys would know more than I. I've always have the correct answer for them, too. Several years ago, my brother asked me if I was going to take a small engine course. And I said, "Why, do they need a teacher?"
In 1996, I created my garden tractor pulling tips and tricks web sites to help promote garden tractor pulling around the world and help bring families and friends closer together, and help keep kids out of trouble with the law. It's my way of contributing my experience to society, and try to make the world a better place to live. Although I also sell my parts and services through my web sites, I'm not just in it for the money. I'm in it to help people live more productive lives. It gives me a good feeling knowing that there's families cooperating together because I believe that in today's society, family values are the most important thing. It helps build a better family when family members function together and share a common interest. And it makes me feel good knowing that I help so many people around the world. I like to see families work together, get out and have fun. I give so much of myself so others can live a better life and be happy. In this "mad" world nowadays with all the "nuts" running around, I think it's good therapy for them. Makes good memories, too. Remember - "Life is better when you're happy, but life is best when other people are happy because of you. Be an inspiration, spread quality information and share your intelligence." - Anonymous
FYI - If you've wondered why it sometimes takes me longer than anticipated to process a customer's order, well, I'm a one man business. I'm the only person who reads and responds to all my customer's emails (about 20-30 per day), take my customer's phone calls (about 20-30 on a nice day), with customers stopping by my shop, repair and rebuild my customer's parts and engines in my shop, order parts from my suppliers, package and I mail my customer's parts at my local Post Office. Customers would stop by often to drop off an engine (or engines) for rebuilding, to purchase parts or just to meet me in person (I'm like a celebrity because of my websites), they consume a lot of my work hours standing around talking with me about different things concerning engines. I don't mind that. It's hard to find help that understands a lot about certain parts and services that I offer in my websites. One former employee out of respect called me a mad scientist. lol Anyway, it seems that I can't find people dedicated and intelligent enough to provide the very best service for my customers and correctly repair some of my customer's parts. I did hire some guys in the past, but I received so many complaints from my customers, I decided to just do everything myself. The work may take longer to complete, but at least I'll know it's done right to the best of my ability. I process all of my customer's orders and perform most of my customer's repairs myself. Most of the time I work seven days a week, including holidays. I'm a busy person! By the way - I can't mass-produce parts in huge volumes or bulk quantities. I can only make one part at a time. I would love to have a much bigger shop with various types of CNC machines, etc., but I lack the funds to make this happen.
Also, many people copy the parts in my websites, probably because they're not capable of thinking of their own ideas. So I removed certain information from my web sites because I do not appreciate certain online garden tractor pulling parts businesses who plagiarize, steal my concepts, copy my parts, and then market and profit from them for themselves through their web sites, and give me no credit or recognition whatsoever for my hard work and research. If they're going to do this, I would appreciate if they would at least give me some credit or recognition by mentioning my name and/or put a link leading to my web sites in exchange. Actually, I think they envy my intelligence and expertise, and they copy some of my products because they're too stupid to come up with their own ideas. They may not like me, but they sure love the ideas in my web sites!
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