Great episode this week. Jeremy takes a deep dive into the life of a hydraulic mechanic with Shane LaBedelle. Shane was raised in the shop that he runs now and was taught everything he knows from his father who started the shop decades ago. Kick back and listen to Shane and Jeremy joke around and talk shop. Stick around at the end of the episode for a tour of Shane's shop.
Eric Girouard 0:00
This is bucket top, a weekly podcast where people who work in the trades and construction that aren't just trying to survive but have the ambition and desire to thrive.
Jeremy Perkins 0:28
All right, welcome to this episode of bucket talk. today. We're here with Shane lava dough. Shane does everything hydraulics. Shane goes by the Tick Tock handle. Shaner with five R's. Shane, welcome. Thank you. Glad to be here. Awesome. Awesome. I'm really excited.
Hydraulics was something crazy that when I was going through schooling in the automotive world, it is a whole nother beast. But I'd love to get down and dirty with you on on your day to day and how you got your start. So let's start. Where are you based out of your background? And how did you get your start? So I'm based out of a little town in Texas called San Angelo. My dad, he started the shop and 99 so as old as I am, I'm 23 years. And like I said, I grew up in this shop. There was really no me. No way of me finding this job. I'd like to say kind of found me. Yep. That's cool. That's cool. So um, so dad started the shop. Yes, sir. And he taught you everything you knew where you went to school? I mean, how did you become the hydraulic wizard you are today? Yes, sir. I learned everything from my dad Ronnie Alaba. Dell. I mean, it's a lot of them on hands job and he learn as you go. Cool, cool. It's mainly
Shane LaBedelle 4:07
Okay, yes, so I'm in long term. I do want to get into machining on my own. Yeah, but that's, that's his whole other can of worms. So like earlier today, I was working on a cylinder that one of the fittings was just completely smashed. So I had to cut that fitting off, grind it down to the barrel on that where it's all smooth, and then I had to find a fitting
Jeremy Perkins 0:09
The opportunity to trade and construction is absolutely ridiculous right now. So if you're hungry, it's time to eat. We discuss what it takes to rise from the bottom to the top with people who are well on their way and roll up their sleeves every single day.
you know, hydraulic equipment, so backhoes, excavators, bobcats, loaders, dump truck, stuff like that. Are you now do you serve some in house or you go out to the field and deal with it? Because like I've seen your CR Tiktok is unbelievable. You're out there, crawling all over these. And trust me, it's a dirty job. But you can you can explain more on your day to day there.
Shane LaBedelle 2:17
Oh, yes, sir. So I mean, most of its in house. We do do service calls depending on the how much help we have at the shop. Yep. And I mean, we'll fix hydraulic gold touches it. We'll do our best to fix. I mean, I just got done fixing a barber chair. Really? Yeah, an old timey one. It has the built in ashtrays and everything.
Jeremy Perkins 2:44
So so so obviously, when anybody's been to a barber, you, you pump that little foot pedal up. That's hydraulics,
Shane LaBedelle 2:52
right? Yes, sir. It's a hydraulic base shear.
Jeremy Perkins 2:55
So is that is that? That's like a pump jack. You know, like any any of those floor jacks that you see what you do, there was a seals was it first? Yeah, it was just a cup.
Shane LaBedelle 3:05
So there's actually two of them. So the first one, it was from a person who bought it off someone and they had no idea what was going on with it. It wasn't working. Yeah, type two hydraulics and found us and all it needed was some all and then a fixed another one recently, it's wild how often those two came in together. But it actually had to redo the seals in that and it was pretty rusted. So that took a little bit of time in that but got that going.
Jeremy Perkins 3:38
So I mean, for our, our audience, I mean, hydraulics is pretty specialized. It is an area that is like a course for me when I when I take automotive. And for you, it's it's all encompassing, so that's all you do. Right? So like pistons, all that stuff. Is there machining involved? Like how deep do you get?
Shane LaBedelle 4:35
that matches it and then I took it to a welding shop and they welded it up for me and but yes, sir Eric, there goes. I straighten shafts and that's scary because those shafts they either snap. Well, they'll bend back. There's not much of an in between.
Jeremy Perkins 4:55
So what's what's what's the craziest disaster you've seen on the job? Now I've seen I've seen some pretty, some pretty gnarly like, you know, excavator arm sheared in half and whatever. But, I mean, I remember my first hydraulic experience, and it was on the return side. So for people that don't don't know what I'm talking about, it was on the no pressure side, right? So hydraulic pressure, it's upwards of 1000s of psi, which a small pinhole leak could cut you. You could end up with, what do they call it when you get hydraulic injection hydraulic injection? So essentially, it's so fine, it hits your skin, it penetrates your skin and then you end up getting blood poisoning because of
Shane LaBedelle 5:42
it. Yes, it basically it will give you gangrene. Oh, really? Really? That's right. Yes, sir. And it just, you gotta get to the hospital fast.
Jeremy Perkins 5:49
So so the my three, my three things that I don't like why actually, I'll count a fourth. But my 334 things that I don't like one is high, which is heights. The other one is steam. Steam will cut you in half. Electricity. I don't I don't mess around with I don't like that neither. Other than 12 volt and 24 volt for all you guys out there. And then hydraulics I mean, it's scary. It's not it's not a forgiving job if you if you don't do it, right. So anyway, low pressure side. My first job my boss was laughing his ass off. I'm pulling the hose off the reservoir. I don't know what we were doing. I don't know if it was changing. hydraulic fluid and everything. You know, tow truck was was was shocked the bed was down. So everything was safe. He wouldn't let me get into a position that I wouldn't be safe. But anyway, I dumped, I don't know, 20 to 50 gallons all over. I'm sure you knew that.
Shane LaBedelle 6:52
It happens to the best. You got to learn through fire.
Jeremy Perkins 6:57
So how do you stay safe on the job? I mean, every piece of equipment is is potentially a new experience. I'm sure you've been in some pretty hairy stuff. Tell me something about Tell me one of the hairy hairier situations you've been in.
Shane LaBedelle 7:14
So, um, some of the most sketchy situations I can tell you is when I'm working. I just honestly made a video on it recently. It's when I was working on one of those dump trailers. Yep. Oh, ran. I had to pull that. Yes, yesterday and I had to pull that cylinder. And I mean, those trailers, they have a little lever that just folds up for a safety. Yep. But it's not that tall. So I got I would get the forklift. And I put the forklift under it. I mean, the forklift technically wouldn't really hold it as much, but it probably would have gave me enough time to get out. More. Yeah, drop to the ground, at least. And then I go to the very end and I'll put blocks of wood. Just like I said, if it doesn't hold it at least delay the time to where I can get say, yeah, right in
Jeremy Perkins 8:08
the pinch point. Yes, sir. Yeah,
Shane LaBedelle 8:11
and some other things is like, you just gotta just be cautious, like, so I've had a couple of hoses brake blow up on me. Yeah. But it's never been enough pressure that they hurt me because I mean, like I said, like I was working on them. It was a boom cylinder on a John Deere 310. And like, you just put that bucket down and then you go back and wiggle the handles make sure every all the pressures gone in that but there is still some pressure left. And like I was there's a video on it as well. But I was just turning it in and I just got a little old shower.
Jeremy Perkins 8:52
Yeah, I mean, I've operated and we've had some, some dry rotted hoses or something that was achieved through and you just see it and it's, it's an explosion and then you know, if you could get the bucket to come down, you know, crashing down or, or whatever. And hydraulics is funky man is a crazy stuff.
Shane LaBedelle 9:14
It's wild. And like, I'll see people will tag me in videos of people trying to break the main line with like this big piece of machinery, like when the boom is up to break the line and crashing down like it's scary.
Jeremy Perkins 9:33
So for all you di wires out there, when it comes to hydraulics, you better know what you're doing because you can get yourself into a hairy situation. So back to your pops right? So you and your pops run the business now or you work for your pops and then where do you picture your career going? Are you Are You the man the next man in line are you go where you're at now? I mean, give me a little bit of that.
Shane LaBedelle 10:00
Here's my so I'm gonna be the next man in line. I mean, dad keeps saying, I still got another nine years. And he actually he took his first vacation and ever, I don't think he's ever taken a vacation. And so it's just me running the show right now with one other worker.
Jeremy Perkins 10:23
So what's that? Like? I mean, have you kind of grown in the position? Or is it kind of like a rude awakening, if you will? Like you're like, shit, Dad's gone. Now I don't know what to do or does your does all that years of experience kicking in is like another day and another day in the life? Oh, to
Shane LaBedelle 10:41
me, it's just another day in the life because honestly, dad, he's up there in the age. So we kind of just, he's kind of the Gopher, go for this, go for that. Go for lunch, get all the parts and everything. And just my biggest thing is trying to keep him out of harm's way. Because I mean, I bounced back a little quicker than he does. Yeah, yeah. They keep him healthy in that. So he can teach me every bit that I can get out of
Jeremy Perkins 11:10
them. That's actually a good point. I mean, some of these some of these old timers I mean, they're good to have around. They may not be the fastest they may not be. They may not have what it took, you know, years ago, but they still are, they still got the knowledge to pass down. And I mean, they've seen it 1000 times and back in the day, I'm sure. I'm sure it was a lot less safe than it is today.
Shane LaBedelle 11:37
Jeremy Perkins 11:40
That's crazy. So you own any pieces of equipment yourself?
Shane LaBedelle 11:45
Um, I don't um, so dad, he's bought bought a couple pieces of equipment. We have a gel skidsteer an old, old mossy Ferguson backhoe that needs a lot of work done to it. And I've kind of taken those on to where they're going to become my project. But I'm going to help that out.
Jeremy Perkins 12:05
Yeah, so that's all Massey Ferguson tractor that I had my eyes on. I got a farm up here. And yeah, they're their beauties. The old the old technology. I got some power. And no computers. It is just beautiful. Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. So I see you sit in the office. That is that is a place that's sometimes a little daunting for, for us. You know, where we're hands on, we're out in the field. We're doing what we got to do. But I'm sure you have to deal with customers. I'm sure you have to deal with contracts with with people out in the service industry, whether it's parts distributors, or, or what have you. Do you like doing that? Or no,
Shane LaBedelle 12:58
I love every bit of it. Because I mean that. So we just upgraded to a different card reader. He doesn't know how to run it. So there's some days where, like, if I was sick, and that dad would have to FaceTime me figure it out. And I'd have to just walk him along the process to get it run in. And I mean, I make the order every day. towards closing. Yeah, I'm kind of both office job and hands on. Make all the tickets and
Jeremy Perkins 13:34
that's crazy. And do you do do you do it by computer? You steal by hand?
Shane LaBedelle 13:39
By hand? Yes, sir. We have all of our customers names in a notebook. Dad is trying to go as long as he can without going to computers.
Jeremy Perkins 13:51
Gotta respect the man for that. So So
Shane LaBedelle 13:56
nerve racking can be so much easier, but
Jeremy Perkins 14:02
Well, that's where you got to innovate. You got to you got to like, Hey, Dad, this is what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna I'm gonna get this a POS system. We're gonna put this in. But yeah, you got to you got to take them out of their comfort zone slowly.
Shane LaBedelle 14:15
Exactly. And, and that's fine. Because shoot, I was never a big computer guy. So I kind of got to learn how to use that software and stuff like that. So it's, it's going well,
Jeremy Perkins 14:27
so let's go back to young Shane. So Shane, you obviously went to high school out of high school? Did you go right into the family business? Or was there was there? A little bit of rebellion didn't want to do dad's job went to work somewhere else or is it always been? I know what I'm gonna do and this is this is what I meant to be.
Shane LaBedelle 14:50
So growing up in that, like, we grew up on a low farm in that from a working family, all my aunts and uncles are farmers, and that so Growing up, I always all I knew was work, from helping them helping them in that and then come in here at the shop when I can, but it was, I was too young to be on the payroll or like, it's kind of dangerous. So I started off just working for family helping run a module builder or someone was one of my cousins who has a pig farm. And I also worked on a vineyard for a while, but I always knew it was going to be the shop.
Jeremy Perkins 15:33
Whoa, I got two questions for you. One, I got pigs. So what kind of pigs were you guys working with?
Shane LaBedelle 15:42
The NIS. Um, so I never really got into all the names in that I knew. I just scraped the floors powerwash and did all the jobs that no one wanted to
Jeremy Perkins 15:53
know. Hey, I mean, that's that's where you start. That's where you are in your bones. That's, that's pretty cool. But dude, a vineyard, what were you doing up there?
Shane LaBedelle 16:03
So I got that job. Mom, my mom actually got me that job when I was 15. Just out of high school in that. So it was my current doctor now. He wanted to start a vineyard because growing up, he always wanted to be a farmer. But they didn't own land. And his dad told them well, you got to pick something small. So he I helped him build his vineyard from the ground up, like running all the wire clearing all the all the land. And now I still go out there in the summers on a Saturday that I'm free or something just to go help out. Pick vines.
Jeremy Perkins 16:48
No so so I don't want to get away from the hydraulic aspect. But I don't know if I'll ever get anybody on this podcast that's working in the vineyard. If you're out there. It is because there's so I'm up in New England. So I'm up in you know, main mass, New Hampshire, Connecticut area. And there's a lot of smaller vineyards. It's not, it's not like out and in, in California. And those areas. So there's like blueberry wine. There's a whole bunch of smaller stuff out here. And I've always been fascinated by the process and, and grapes. Is that where you guys are? Obviously working with? Yeah. So grapes are. They're very sensitive to climate. And like, I've heard I've heard out in California, people losing their entire crop for the year, just because of frost or some sort of setback that sounds so minor. And it's almost like a snapshot in time. How did he protect against all that? Or was it
Shane LaBedelle 17:54
a lot of it was just doing? He didn't take in more than he could chew, if that makes sense. Yeah, he's slowly expanded by acre. Now so and just to be just to protect it was just different types of spray and all that. I mean, the climate down here is it works. Yeah, pretty
Jeremy Perkins 18:13
Shane LaBedelle 18:16
That's I mean, we Yes, sir. There was more off yours than others. But I mean, it was never too bad.
Jeremy Perkins 18:24
So you ever get up there and, and mash the grapes with your bare feet?
Shane LaBedelle 18:28
Oh, I wish but he had machines already. wanted to do it like the Indians used to
Jeremy Perkins 18:35
any any like hydraulic operated equipment. He's like, Hey, Shane, I need you to come off here.
Shane LaBedelle 18:43
Yeah, well, now the funny thing was like, he didn't know that I came from a hydraulic mechanic shop. Yeah. So he was having troubles on his tractor in that. And then I started learning a little more, and I kind of gave him the knowledge or like, fix some stuff for him. And it was all good. That's cool.
Jeremy Perkins 19:02
I mean, up here, it's kind of helping your neighbor. I mean, we have a nice community of people to help me on my farm. And if I don't have the answer, somebody I know here has the answer, or at least is going to put me in enough of situation that it's either gonna get really dangerous, or it's gonna work out. And no, so you know, being able to help your neighbor. I think that's, that's super cool. And sounds like you had a diverse background. So after after the vineyard, what was next?
Shane LaBedelle 19:38
I'm just really schooling in that and then right when I got done with school, so I remember I started full time, June 1 of 2019. And I think that was a Monday and I think it was like we graduated that previous Thursday, so I went straight on
Jeremy Perkins 20:00
That's it. That's it. I know what I'm doing. I'm going to make that money. Alright, so working with family. Sometimes it can get a little tricky. Are you and your father you guys, you guys work well together?
Shane LaBedelle 20:13
Yes. Um, we usually we don't butt heads that often. I I'm, I'm more of a bite my tongue and listen to him just because I respect your elders. But um, yeah, we don't butt heads that often and when it does and when we do it's never a grudge or anything. It's short term. And we just said what needs to be said and then keep going?
Jeremy Perkins 20:41
Yeah. So when it comes to employees, like, clearly we want to talk about the current employees because they're the best, right? But they are the best. But how does one? Like not being from this industry not being from a family who created this job? How do you get into it? Where are you pulling from for help?
Shane LaBedelle 21:06
Cute. Um, so that's always been one of our biggest difficulties is finding good help. Yeah. Because I mean, most of our help is just been cousins that need a job for a little bit or just some random guy who walked up and asked for a job. And we teach them a little bit. And I mean, they never it's hard to find a good hydraulic mechanic. Yeah, that we keep.
Jeremy Perkins 21:40
Yeah, no, I mean, and that was kind of one of the one of the things I had a hard time with was was finding help in the automotive industry. And I think it's, I think it's kind of trades wide. But yeah, I mean, if you got a good steady job, good pay. Clearly, you offer competitive wages. So that that's, that's something that'll, that'll help you from being an employer. Getting people people involved in that trade. Do you? Do you ever go down to the trade schools or?
Shane LaBedelle 22:13
No, sir. So originally, I wanted to go to it was TSTC down in Sweetwater, Waco, Texas. Yeah, but I couldn't find a strict hydraulic program. It was always just like, learn diesel, and then there's a hydraulic class. So adding on to that, that, going back to a subject before finding hydraulics, and that that's a hard thing. There's not a lot of hydraulic mechanics out there or like not, is meanie if you if that makes sense.
Jeremy Perkins 22:49
Yeah. I mean, I, once again, going back to that, you know, going through universal Technical Institute, I think hydraulics for me out of a two year program was three weeks long. And it was, I mean, it was pretty intense. The schematics all the drawings that you got to work through. They were pretty interesting. I had a good I had a good background from the military, which is a little bit more in depth than that. But yeah, I mean, I, I couldn't imagine potentially getting a job within the hydraulic industry, other than crimping hoses and, and, you know, working on replacing seals and what have you to start off but is that kind of what you're looking for, for like a new employee is just somebody that will jump right in and you'll teach them the rest?
Shane LaBedelle 23:39
Yes, I would like to find someone that knows the basics of hydraulics. That doesn't, that's not someone that just comes in and goes, I know how to turn a wrench but that actually understands it. Like I could give them a cylinder and they can't fix it.
Jeremy Perkins 23:55
Okay. Yeah. No, no, I mean, that makes sense. Because there's obviously there's a lot of safety things to it, you really can't just take it apart and hope for the best because there is there is a lot of issues that you can run into hazards wise. So you gotta have a good foundation in that regard. Sweet. So we've gone through a couple of dangerous scenarios dump trailers are not are not as simple as they seem. They could still like still blind you and actually that brings up a good point because I think there's a lot of people out there that have dumb trailers that are willing to mess around with something small or even like a small Kubota or what have you. They're just as dangerous as you know, a big old cat loader job. Exactly. And I mean, to this day I still hear about and you know, God rest their souls, but I hear you know, backyard mechanics working on a dump body, and then done tracking bang. Oh, dude, I And, and that was, that's always been my fear, they got tools out there now, keep that keep that dump body propped up, throw as much shit in there as possible to, to allow you to get out of the way. Hydraulics Can, can be unpredictable, but at the same time, if you know what you're doing, they're a little bit more predictable than then you would think. But yeah, and then the other side of things, people don't realize this cleanliness of hydraulic fluid. So, you know, diesel oil, and a few other I mean, even diesel fuel. The micron filters and everything, have a little bit more tolerance, but when, when it comes to hydraulics, I mean, it's pure as pure can be,
Shane LaBedelle 25:47
yes. Um, so, like, you could get some water in there water in the system, and it could, it can ruin that whole system, you'd need to drain the whole reservoir and clean out everything, just depending on how much water you get in there.
Jeremy Perkins 26:03
Yeah, water, sand, like any debris. And that's, that's what's kind of cool about hydraulics is, is hydraulic fluid doesn't compress or compresses at a lesser rate than say water or other fluids. So it allows you to push that cylinder, you know, out under extreme pressures, and to your point you get you get water in there. Well, now, now that water compresses a lot more, and you'll get Sagun Sagun the boom or whatever, and it creates a more dangerous situation, I guess if you will.
Shane LaBedelle 26:44
Yeah, yeah. And like you can tell how people treat their equipment by the cylinders. They break it down and it's just It looks like a frappuccino coming out of the cylinder like just watered down Oh,
Jeremy Perkins 27:01
yeah. Yeah. Yeah. And then you know, if anybody's seen a hydraulic cylinder, it is shiny it comes out and it is shiny and yes hitting any any any burrs that will ruin that seal and you will have a failure real quick so just because it's shiny doesn't mean that that it can take I mean that we used to we used to weld on all them all them piece of equipment and and you damn sure better make sure that that that that cylinder is covered.
Shane LaBedelle 27:31
Yes. Oh yeah. Cuz that's why I hate using heat to like break open a gland in that because that he will just melt all the seals in it. Yeah. And that's a doozy and a half cleaning out those grooves and so that's why I like leverage. Five I leverage.
Jeremy Perkins 27:54
Well, I mean, what do you like 120 pounds soaking wet. So you need a lot of 520 in the pocket just need a bigger bar pipe on a pipe and you're gonna go boy Awesome. Awesome. So Shane, you know outside all this what? How do you get down? How do you unload on on the off time? What do you do?
Shane LaBedelle 28:21
I'm kind of bouncing around. I like to go work out. Running is very therapeutical to me or just going to the gym. And also I just shoot if there's the pool table drinking a couple beers and just shooting pool with some buddies.
Jeremy Perkins 28:39
No mas Are you a nine ball or eight ball guy? April no nine ball ha
Shane LaBedelle 28:48
No, I haven't played nine ball yet. I've I've heard of it and that just haven't got to.
Jeremy Perkins 28:53
It's a fun game. I actually enjoy it. But yeah, and then when I was over in Ireland, I got to I got to play snooker which all the balls are the same pretty much the same color that I still I still don't understand the game but it's it's another pool pool style game. But running. That's interesting. You do half marathons full marathons or you just run on wind.
Shane LaBedelle 29:18
How rundown why now, so back in the back in high school in that I was a big runner. I mean, cross country and track where my sports cross country was my main sport. I mean, I'd be in the summertime I'd be running 20 miles a day, just just because I found that's what I'm good at and I just enjoy it. Fuck yes, sir. And then I ran into some injury. So I freshman year I tore my calf. And they didn't think it was a tear. They just thought it was a super bad strain. Yeah, so We tried to fix it as a strain and we didn't figure it out. It was a tear till about a year later. And then not just having leg problems in that. So that's why I got into a gym because I love working out and I can't run as much as I was able to.
Jeremy Perkins 30:19
Yeah, I mean, I hate running. I'm like, 250 this body ain't built for. That's Wow. So I mean, what do you do? Like 20? I can't even wrap my head around it like I'm so whatever you want to call ADHD that, that I couldn't I mean, 20 Miles is what? Couple hours, three hours?
Shane LaBedelle 30:45
Well, that Oh, I let me rephrase. So 20 miles in a day. So I do 10 In the evening to 10 at night, or 10 in the morning to 10 in the evening. I'll tell you my little Forrest Gump story. This was just a random day of the summer, I just went out for a run. And I just didn't stop run. And then next thing I know I, I stopped at 13 miles. How was it planned?
Jeremy Perkins 31:18
So not only your glutton for punishment, not only are you in the hydraulic industry, but secondly, 10 in the morning, and then work a day and then I'm gonna do 10 more miles at the end of the evening.
Shane LaBedelle 31:33
Well, well, well, well, this was back in high school when I didn't have to work. But I didn't have to work hydraulics
Jeremy Perkins 31:40
when you're an animal
Shane LaBedelle 31:44
that's why I'm so the verse that I have on my pack is First Corinthians 927, which is let me back up to verses actually, it goes from First Corinthians 924 to 927. Do you not know in a race all runners run, but only one gets the prize Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training, they do it to get a crown that will not last but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly. I do not box like a boxer beating in the air. Now I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so when I preach to others, I myself will not be disqualified to the prize. Damn. And to me it's just a big self discipline. Verse.
Jeremy Perkins 32:37
Interesting. Damn, I gotta read Corinthians. Good book. I mean a little self discipline in my life. That's Wow, man. Holy shit. Dude. I still can't get over. That's all. How many how many miles do you think you've ran? In your last lifetime?
Shane LaBedelle 33:05
That's going from
Jeremy Perkins 33:09
Yeah, no, I can tell you how much beer I drank
Shane LaBedelle 33:14
I don't even know if I can tell you that
Jeremy Perkins 33:19
I'm at least one of them. Big propane tank truck trucks now.
Shane LaBedelle 33:24
Oh, yeah. Goodness. I don't know if I could give you an answer on the on the miles I ran.
Jeremy Perkins 33:32
You had to run across Texas at least by now.
Shane LaBedelle 33:36
Yeah, I would think so. Yeah. Oh, golly. That's a stamp of a question right there.
Jeremy Perkins 33:45
Well, I didn't say it was gonna be an easy podcast. Oh, yeah. Shit through that's, that's crazy. Yeah, so run in, working out that seems to be a trend for a lot of people in the trade. I gotta respect it. God has got to stay in shape. This job ain't easy. Obviously to a lot of people don't realize the mental aspect that the toll it takes on you I got a short fuse. And I'm sure a lot of people that are listening to it do too. And I've had my back against the wall on some things and like you said that that that flange nod or whatever you want to call it just won't come loose. You're heating it, you're beating it. It's hot out or it's pouring out and it just is your day is not going right and and something that can take three minutes has taken you all day. And you're looking at a second day doing this. And I mean there's having that mental toughness is is you know, having that being able to have that mental mindset is is key in the shop. I mean because is how many people you've seen just go fuck it and walk off the job. It's like this. Yeah, this isn't for me. And you got to do.
Shane LaBedelle 35:09
We've had a couple back in the day or like dad did when when I was still growing up and now like some people just say, this ain't me. I'm done.
Jeremy Perkins 35:16
Yeah. Yes, yeah. I'm sorry. No, no, no, don't be sorry. It's just more like to be able to get through the day. And then do it day in and day out and then do this for career. Yeah, to maintain that positive mindset. I've heard a lot of people from working out to shooting to, to all sorts of sports, hell, even a drinkin. I mean, just just keeping that keeping that mindset and keeping that mental sharpness. And, yeah, it's not an easy job.
Shane LaBedelle 35:51
Yeah, well, to me, it's just like, I enjoy this. Like, to me, it's another day in paradise. I mean, it's, um, it's better to the think angry than act angry because, I mean, shoot, you blow up in that, like, you're not working at your 100%. Like, if you just got to take a step back, take a deep breath. Just go back into it just, I like to stay as calm as I can. Even if I'm heated on the inside, I'm doing my best to not blow up.
Jeremy Perkins 36:25
That's, that's a good, that's a good point for some of these young boys and girls that are coming up in the trades is is I agree, you know, taking a deep breath walking away from it coming back. Clear in your head because it ain't gonna get better being angry and exactly.
Shane LaBedelle 36:44
I mean, I'll I'll just start raising up on a job. Plenty of work. I'll go work on something else for a little bit and then I'll come back to tackle the tackle that situation. Oh, yeah.
Jeremy Perkins 36:59
So what is it can be past or present? What's the number one? And I think we touched on it? What's the number one tool that you rely on? Day in and day out? Now it could be when you were first starting off? Anybody getting into the hydraulic industry trade? I mean, for me, it was it was like a torch. It was you know, my toolbox but for you, what is what is the number one go to for you.
Shane LaBedelle 37:28
And a tool that I can't live without would be Big Bertha my 60 inch pipe wrench. I mean, because like I said, I'm more keen to leverage I hate using heat because it melts the seals so I'll go leverage and I mean, I have Big Bertha and then I have two cheater pipes that are taller than me now I will throw on Bertha to get that leverage to break that top gland or break that nut whatever I need to do and um so I would say um get a strong pipe wrench you need a tough pipe wrench because I mean I've snapped those those cheap ones that you buy
Jeremy Perkins 38:17
yeah I got a nice Pittsburgh one from Harbor Freight
Shane LaBedelle 38:23
Yeah, those don't last
Jeremy Perkins 38:27
that's that's my big birthday I don't need it I don't need it much but ya know I could see in fucking the the the not always loosens up on you the job gets too big and you slipping off it. So obviously yes investing investing the money in the right tool that you're gonna go to day in and day out for me it wasn't so I could get away with a cheaper version of it. But for you it sounds like you know paying quality tools for the job. Yeah, and then a big galvanized fence post pipe that fits over it. Oh, yeah.
Shane LaBedelle 39:05
I mean, the pipe is just an old cylinder that we cut the ends off of and oh no shit. Yeah, that's what our cheater boys
Jeremy Perkins 39:14
know give us a big bertha real quick.
Shane LaBedelle 39:17
So here's Bertha. Yep.
Jeremy Perkins 39:21
We take we taken a tour of the shop for everybody
Shane LaBedelle 39:29
this is Bertha right here.
Jeremy Perkins 39:30
Shane LaBedelle 39:32
And we have a good little strong vices are keto? Well. This is my main device that I use the most. This is Richard. Rigid. This guy is older than I am. Saturday repaired a couple times just pure cast iron. Yep. And then got another ridge here. chained by some Wiltons
Jeremy Perkins 40:02
Oh, well, 10 bullets right there, baby.
Shane LaBedelle 40:05
Oh yeah. Then upstairs is where I keep my large variety of seals.
Jeremy Perkins 40:13
Nice, nice. Alright, let's get to this. Let's get this excavator. Yes. So as Shane was saying earlier, some some of the toughest jobs in the hydraulic industry are getting to that fit, and you can see it. But there are about 59 ds that come off of it, and you got to get that one hose that's blown. And we're going out there. We're gonna go take a look at this thing. Let me get the name of it. Little mini
Shane LaBedelle 40:46
Nelson. Ah, little whack. So I don't know if you can see, but this is the hose that I have to get off. Yeah, you follow it, it goes all the way in there. Which is up there. And so I need to get this thing higher. So I can get it off. Er, so I can get enough room to get under it and actually grab that hose.
Jeremy Perkins 41:20
Yeah, so we were talking about this. A it ain't starting. So it's either going to be a starter, it's going to be a safety switch. It's going to be a dead battery. Clearly, Shane, you have gone through the troubleshooting. There's the fuse block.
Shane LaBedelle 41:41
Where's the fuse block right there? And I don't know if there was where the flashlight is? I don't know if there was one relay.
Jeremy Perkins 41:45
Yeah, that looks like a relay. What does that really say?
Shane LaBedelle 41:52
That one says K 51. And a lot of letters.
Jeremy Perkins 42:02
So we're definitely going to have to talk offline about this one. Yeah, because usually they come with a cover, and they'll give you a little bit of identification on it. And for people out there. I mean, this is this is the toughest part is really just finding out where wires go, what switches do what every piece of equipment is different. And then and this is just to get to do the job that's broken. This isn't even you know, his job isn't even to start the start the excavator, it's really just a repair that hose and I run across them all the time. You disconnect the battery to make it safe. And all of a sudden, the aftermarket alarm on work. I mean, it is just sometimes headbang. But walk us through the shop a little bit more. How many how many bays you got?
Shane LaBedelle 42:52
Oh, it's just so there's the
Jeremy Perkins 42:56
front door. Nice drive through I like it.
Shane LaBedelle 42:59
Back Door going to the yard and then just over here. Big of a shop. I mean, it's one of my goals. And future is expanding, turning the back lot or we have a big overhang outside and closing that off. Yeah. Make more shopping. I'm working on buying trying to get the land behind us. Because that's we have the most use for that. So I'm trying to get that. Yeah.
Jeremy Perkins 43:37
No, that's, and that's cool. And you got a pretty clean shop for a hydraulic shop. Oh,
Shane LaBedelle 43:43
you should have seen it a couple of weeks ago. I hate working in clutter and being in hydraulics. That's hard. So I do my best to clean I mean there's days where I'll stay up till 3am cleaning this place just because it makes my life that much easier.
Jeremy Perkins 44:00
Oh yeah. We're on top these are all fittings and everything.
Shane LaBedelle 44:05
All my seals, hydraulic meals. Are they put up?
Jeremy Perkins 44:09
Are they pretty standard?
Shane LaBedelle 44:11
Yeah, so I'm over here is that you cups? Which is the most? Or is the? The? The main seal in it? Yeah. And so they're all metric. And then I have metric wipers down there. I have O rings over here.
Jeremy Perkins 44:28
Yeah. And for a lot of people out there they don't realize that you have to work in not only metric but American Correct.
Shane LaBedelle 44:36
Yes. See, I usually I do more American than I do standard ruthlessly. Yeah, yeah. And so these are all my standard seals. Yeah, right over here. My wall of pistons.
i We have a We had a bunch of seals. Because we were one point we weren't the most organized. So the seals kind of just went in buckets. Yeah. So mine project right now is individualizing. All those seals. Yeah. And then putting them all up.
Jeremy Perkins 45:18
Yeah. Nice. Nice. I great shop. looks. It looks awesome. Thank you. Hell yeah, Shane, it looks like you got a class act operation over there.
Shane LaBedelle 45:31
Doing our best.
Jeremy Perkins 45:34
Awesome, awesome. So we're, we're at the end of it. And I really appreciate you taking the time to dive into the hydraulic industry. You know, anything from crimping hoses to, you know, just general safety and then learning about your, your life on the vineyards. But if anybody wants to get a hold of you, or ask you more questions about what you do from, you know, start to finish. Where can they find you?
Shane LaBedelle 46:07
Um, I would say I'm probably my Instagram would be the best. Yep. I don't know if you have that pulled up to where we could. It's just my first and last name. So Shane Laba. Shane Lobato. Yes, sir. Oh, yeah, just DM me through there. That's where I see most of my DMs.
Jeremy Perkins 46:28
Oh, yeah. Sweet. Sweet. So Shane, thank you for being on the podcast. This has been wonderful. And you know, good luck. Stay safe out there.
Shane LaBedelle 46:39
Yes, sir. Thank you.
Jeremy Perkins 46:40
And as a special thanks to our loyal listeners. Were giving $10 off your next purchase of $60 or more at Ron workwear.com. Use Discount Code bucket talk. That's bucket talk. 10
Shane LaBedelle, born and raised in the shop. Shane’s father introduced him to the world of mechanics when he started his own shop and taught Shane everything he knows now about hydraulic mechanics. Nowadays, Shane will be running the show soon, his way and has come into his own as one of the best in the trade.
Jeremy, being a former mechanic himself, is like a kid in a candy store bouncing questions off Shane looking for any wisdom he has. Shane gives us the inside scoop on being ready to assume the position of running the company and is eager for the future.
The fellas laugh through the episode of the dangers and funny moments that come along with working in these trades. Everything from fun tools, how Shane learned the trade, what it is like to run a business in the blue collar world and even a tour through Shane's shop.