CAT Think BIG Program

Peacefrog53

New member
Anyone on the boards gone through this, or work in the heavy equipment industry? I received an offer from Quinn about how they'd pay for nearly everything including tools, with paid OTJ training, plus paid internship. Downside is that it's in Stockton, CA for 4 years!!

Thoughts from anyone in the big diesel biz? How'd you go about getting training for the yob?
 

GrimmJeeper

ouch.
NAXJA Member
shoot a PM to Aaron, Flexd_XJ on here. im -pretty sure he works for CAT and has been there a long time, from his posts on FB about work he seems to really like it.

my 2¢ on the idea is if you're a heavy equipment mechanic or even just a big deisel tech you will NEVER be out of work unless you want to be. that's one of the jbs that never goes away because it's literally what drives our economy.
 

cal

NAXJA Warranty Voider
NAXJA Member
Man stockton is a shithole. I spend a lot of time there for work.. the hotel that I stay in discourages customers leaving after dark, and will even send a gopher out to the store to keep you there.
 

Peacefrog53

New member
shoot a PM to Aaron, Flexd_XJ on here. im -pretty sure he works for CAT and has been there a long time, from his posts on FB about work he seems to really like it.

my 2¢ on the idea is if you're a heavy equipment mechanic or even just a big deisel tech you will NEVER be out of work unless you want to be. that's one of the jbs that never goes away because it's literally what drives our economy.

Will do, thanks.

That's kind of why I'm contemplating the idea of going. Pretty decent, STEADY, paycheck. I Had an opportunity to go to VOLTA in Oregon for Outside Line Training, and the 4-year apprenticeship, but they booted me for not being able to attend orientation. So I'm the hunt for another career path.


Man stockton is a shithole. I spend a lot of time there for work.. the hotel that I stay in discourages customers leaving after dark, and will even send a gopher out to the store to keep you there.
So I've heard.

Hey....at least if they have a gopher, I won't need to drive after a few beers.....to get more beers. Lol. Might work in my favor. Just me an my trusty shotgun, waitin' for beer..... :patriot:
 

Jeepnut1

New member
I spent the better part of my life working on heavy equipment, mostly Deere stuff but they are mostly the same once you have the basics down. I totally agree with Grimmy, you'll never be out of work....ever.

Find somewhere outside Stockton to live.....or get your CCW
 

chasdb

NAXJA Member 3643
NAXJA Member
If you can get in the program, do it. My coworker's son just finished UTI and applied for the program, 26 applied, narrowed down to 6, by 2nd interview where he was told thanks for trying and they took 4 in the program. I've been doing it since 88 for competing dealers and always had work. It's not easy work and has become more technical with the new diesels and onboard computers,
 

Peacefrog53

New member
If you can get in the program, do it. My coworker's son just finished UTI and applied for the program, 26 applied, narrowed down to 6, by 2nd interview where he was told thanks for trying and they took 4 in the program. I've been doing it since 88 for competing dealers and always had work. It's not easy work and has become more technical with the new diesels and onboard computers,
Wow. Well I guess it wouldn't hurt to try. Now I just need to write a 250 word essay about WHY I want to go....... Can I just put BIG YELLOW IRON a bunch of times down a page??? The use of nothing smaller than a 1' box wrench? lol Like....come on. Who doesn't like big ass machines....



well, maybe cows, and chickens and shit.....
 

karstic

Moderator
If you are thinking of becoming an H.E. mechanic talk to one first. Plan on long hours far away from home.
 

chasdb

NAXJA Member 3643
NAXJA Member
I like being a field mech better than being in the shop but you have to start somewhere. I used to often work 60+ hrs in 5 days, but most companies are trying to comply with DOT regulations when driving commercial trucks. We used to cover Ca and parts of Az from our So Cal shop but have added 5 locations so I spend more nights at home. Once in a while we get a helper, or double up on larger jobs when it's slow. 19 Liter Cummins swap in a Kawasaki wheel loader done in 2 days.
 

RWKHausSupply

NAXJA Supporting Vendor
Charles, dont talk like you like it... LOL.

I know Charles work schedule at times seemed like everytime I talk to him (hes my co driver and helps with gears, etc, as well as friend) he was in some hellish area that took him 2-3 hours to get there and was on his 8th hour of on site work, with a 2 hour drive home, only to have to do the same thing the rest of the week.

I will say though, if it trains you to do what he can do and how detailed orientated he is, then you will be a great asset to any company when done. Not to mention he has got to be making $$$ with all the overtime, lol...
 

Peacefrog53

New member
Charles, dont talk like you like it... LOL.

I know Charles work schedule at times seemed like everytime I talk to him (hes my co driver and helps with gears, etc, as well as friend) he was in some hellish area that took him 2-3 hours to get there and was on his 8th hour of on site work, with a 2 hour drive home, only to have to do the same thing the rest of the week.

I will say though, if it trains you to do what he can do and how detailed orientated he is, then you will be a great asset to any company when done. Not to mention he has got to be making $$$ with all the overtime, lol...

Yea I've heard some pretty good stories. My brother is an apprentice Outside Lineman, and he goes to some job sites that are seriously OUT THERE.

Fortunately, the offer that I received is to work at the Quinn CAT dealership here in Foothill Ranch for my 2 year internship, after the first 2-years of getting my A.S. and subsequent paid OTJ training in Stockton. Then I guess it's kind of like you're on your own if they don't hire you FT. But will have Journey-level status. :laugh3:

Long hours = Big money. I'm 27 years old. What else do I have to do... besides get in trouble with my jeep. I've got a few ASE certifications, and my Class A, so that should help.

Charles - Are you guys union at all? IUOE I believe it is.
 

chasdb

NAXJA Member 3643
NAXJA Member
I don't always hate it, lol. We are not union most of the dealers I know of are not either. I was in Operating Engineers Local 12 for a few years when I worked for a pipeline contractor, steady work as a HDR mech but lots of layoffs for the crews. Definitely go for it, Think Big is a great program. If you don't get picked up for some reason we are usually looking for the right people.
 
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