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At A Crossroad.

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Dale's Mowing
Dale's Mowing

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At A Crossroad.
#1

Well, it had to happen at some point I guess, but having it happen so early since the creation of my little mowing business has thumped me.

 

Over the weekend I started the ute, to find it out of the blue running extremely rough. Then I noticed oil smoke and my heart sank. Sure enough it has emptied the engine oil out of the rocker cover, after what appears to be a slack timing chain went rogue and smashed a hole through it. The cause? Massively thick sludge in the engine preventing the chain tensioners to work properly. It looks as though the previous owner may have dumped some thickening agent in there at some point. It was so thick that it had even accumulated just inside the oil filler cap, out of sight. The mechanic and I were scraping out heaps of the stuff.

 

Unfortunately the costs of either repairing or replacing the engine have me looking at whether I can keep going with this mowing caper, only a year since I started. Business has been growing well, but not well enough yet to throw thousands of $$ towards this sort of repair so soon.

 

Anyway, that's my vent for now. Still weighing up the options, and will know which direction I am facing once I get some repair quotes. If the costs end up too high then I might be selling the gear and looking at getting back into my old trade, making and repairing jewellery (something I haven't done for a while, but really enjoy).

 

It's a shame, as I have been really enjoying mowing for fun and profit.


Posted 14 May 2017 - 10:05 PM

Mattie
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At A Crossroad.
#2

Unfortunately mate with any business venture , you must be prepared to invest in stock or machinery .in other words you need to spend money to make money , going into any venture under capitalised will result in either very slow growth of profit or going belly up.
I think you need to either get out of the industry or find a financier willing to lend you money to invest in your business , which maybe hard if you don't have a good income stream and winter fast approaching.either way I wish you better luck with the future.
Posted 15 May 2017 - 07:48 AM

crocster
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At A Crossroad.
#3

That's bad luck Dale - the cost of engine repairs would take your breath away nowadays - maybe something like this:-

 

https://www.carsales...D-4734459/?Cr=2

 

would keep you going? I had an earlier model than that one mowing for several years with no trouble - they're so basic there's nothing much to break - if it checks out OK presale it's unlikely to let you down - don't know whether you pull a trailer tho.

Cheers


Posted 15 May 2017 - 07:52 AM

john22
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At A Crossroad.
#4

Yes thats a blow you dont need Dale, a sludged up motor is a sign that the previous owner neglected oil changes. I think about a change all the time mate, I cannot find anything that pays what I earn with the lifestyle to boot. Good luck with your choice, at the end of the day you have to be happy regardless.

Cheers


Posted 15 May 2017 - 07:54 AM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#5

That's bad luck Dale - the cost of engine repairs would take your breath away nowadays - maybe something like this:-

 

https://www.carsales...D-4734459/?Cr=2

 

would keep you going? I had an earlier model than that one mowing for several years with no trouble - they're so basic there's nothing much to break - if it checks out OK presale it's unlikely to let you down - don't know whether you pull a trailer tho.

Cheers

 

Yep the costs of repair/replacement are eye-watering. Looking at $4000 either way.....that's how much I bought the ute for in the first place!

 

And yeah I pull a trailer.


Posted 15 May 2017 - 10:35 AM

drewebb
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At A Crossroad.
#6

Yep the costs of repair/replacement are eye-watering. Looking at $4000 either way.....that's how much I bought the ute for in the first place!

 

And yeah I pull a trailer.

But you did buy it cheap if i remember right  :)


Posted 15 May 2017 - 12:30 PM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#7

But you did buy it cheap if i remember right  :)

 

Haha Yes you are right. Most of these utes are selling for around $7,000-$8,000, and this one was half that.

 

Now I know why!!


Posted 15 May 2017 - 12:37 PM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#8

Unfortunately mate with any business venture , you must be prepared to invest in stock or machinery .in other words you need to spend money to make money , going into any venture under capitalised will result in either very slow growth of profit or going belly up.
I think you need to either get out of the industry or find a financier willing to lend you money to invest in your business , which maybe hard if you don't have a good income stream and winter fast approaching.either way I wish you better luck with the future.

 

Yep totally agree. I tried my best to make sure I had bought worthy gear, and indeed everything was looking rosy until the weekend when the engine went bang. It was very sudden and unexpected (the ute seemed like it was almost unbreakable), and sadly I had not yet built up enough in reserve to be able to fund such an expensive issue. Smaller issues I could have handled, but catastrophic ones, nup.

 

It was a risk I took not having cash reserves, and it's hit me where it hurts. Such is life.


Posted 15 May 2017 - 01:13 PM

Mattie
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At A Crossroad.
#9

Maybe u can get a loan from a relative to help you out until next season.
Seems like you were having a good go at getting the business up and paying.
I found it usually takes around three years before you start making the serious coin and the first year is always the hardest .hope you can continue on.
Posted 15 May 2017 - 01:32 PM

Macka
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At A Crossroad.
#10

you need 50k+ to startup this sort of business and that will only cover you for a couple of years if your lucky.  Get out now if you cant afford 5k or get a 30k loan.


Posted 15 May 2017 - 03:25 PM

plucka
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At A Crossroad.
#11

Having your vehicle out of action in this business is obviously devastating, income goes to zero.  I was thinking about buying a older cheaper van/ute to save money but I'm realising the risk is too high and probably a false economy which is why I'm looking at new or near new now.  A well maintained vehicle should last a long time but you just never know how well previous owners have looked after them.


Posted 16 May 2017 - 07:10 AM

drewebb
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At A Crossroad.
#12

 

 

Anyway, that's my vent for now. Still weighing up the options, and will know which direction I am facing once I get some repair quotes. If the costs end up too high then I might be selling the gear and looking at getting back into my old trade, making and repairing jewellery (something I haven't done for a while, but really enjoy).

 

 

Is that your gear on Gumtree for $8500? 
Personally!! I,d get a loan, it,s all a tax reduction. 


Posted 16 May 2017 - 02:11 PM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#13

Is that your gear on Gumtree for $8500? 
Personally!! I,d get a loan, it,s all a tax reduction. 

 

Yep that's my gear, and it's negotiable within reason if anyone is thinking about it. :-) I've already had one offer within 24 hours.

 

I had considered a loan, but to be honest I have had financial problems in recent years and my credit rating is shot, so I wouldn't get a loan without paying stupid interest rates.


Posted 16 May 2017 - 03:05 PM

drewebb
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At A Crossroad.
#14

Short term pain for long term gain.  :)


Posted 16 May 2017 - 04:52 PM

hjl
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At A Crossroad.
#15

Hi Dale

A suggestion. Maybe your mechanic can get a second hand motor from the wreckers that will fit your ute. My mechanic was telling me about that idea as my ute has 300000 km on it so it is only a matter of time untill it needs a new motor. My mechanic was talking around  $2000 fitted which is a lot better that $4000.

Good luck whatever you do.

 

Cheers

hjl


Posted 16 May 2017 - 08:07 PM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#16

Hi Dale

A suggestion. Maybe your mechanic can get a second hand motor from the wreckers that will fit your ute. My mechanic was telling me about that idea as my ute has 300000 km on it so it is only a matter of time untill it needs a new motor. My mechanic was talking around  $2000 fitted which is a lot better that $4000.

Good luck whatever you do.

 

Cheers

hjl

 

I've looked into that.

 

If it was a smaller engine then yes I could probably get it done for around $2000 or so. But being a large V6 the cheapest engines from wreckers I've found are $3000, then there would be around $1000 for fitting. And being from wreckers there would be no way of knowing how the engine has been treated previously.

 

Rebuilding the current engine would also be around $4000 all up.


Posted 16 May 2017 - 10:51 PM

hjl
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At A Crossroad.
#17

Yes my ute is a 4 cylinder so is cheaper to fix.

Good luck with what you do.

Cheers

hjl


Posted 18 May 2017 - 05:27 PM

Smokey
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At A Crossroad.
#18

Hi dale
Hang in there mate I feel your pain. Don't make any rushed decisions and sell your gear. It will probably be something you will regret in years to come especially if you love being your own boss.

If I was you I would see if a mate can loan you the money to get you back on the road and sometime down the track upgrade to a newer vehicle.
Cheers,
Smokey
Posted 18 May 2017 - 07:13 PM

Grae
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#19

My advice (for what it's worth) is to mothball the ute for the time being and put the repair cash towards any old cheap ute that will get you around, you can on-sell it later for what you paid for it. At least that will buy time and keep you going and the clients serviced.

EDIT: and you still own the needs repairing ute which must have some value left in it.


Posted 18 May 2017 - 07:28 PM

Dale's Mowing
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At A Crossroad.
#20

Don't make any rushed decisions and sell your gear. It will probably be something you will regret in years to come especially if you love being your own boss.
 

 

Definitely enjoy being my own boss, and I've had a good hard think about it since Saturday.

 

I had given up something years ago that I regretted, so I know what you're talking about. And I'm looking at this as a way to get back into it again.

 

My advice (for what it's worth) is to mothball the ute for the time being and put the repair cash towards any old cheap ute that will get you around, you can on-sell it later for what you paid for it. At least that will buy time and keep you going and the clients serviced.

EDIT: and you still own the needs repairing ute which must have some value left in it.

 

The good news is my clients won't have to wait long to be serviced again. It looks like I've found a buyer for my clients. Working on someone regarding the trailer and gear now.


Posted 18 May 2017 - 10:56 PM




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