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Wanted: Good Porsche Mechanic in Bay Area

 
Old 03-09-2016, 05:05 AM
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Default Wanted: Good Porsche Mechanic in Bay Area

First off, an introduction: I'm currently living in Germany, but have been enlisted by a friend in the Bay Area to help her buy a Porsche. I like nothing better than spending other people's money buying cool cars.

Since I am geographically separated from my friend, I think the first thing would to introduce her to a good mechanic in her area that really knows Porsches. Once she is introduced and finds the car for her, she can be assured of having the car baselined, and who knows; mechanics tend to know where some nice cars are that have been well-maintained.

Thanks for the help in advance.

Drew
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Old 03-09-2016, 09:59 AM
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Where in the Bay Area?
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Old 03-09-2016, 10:04 AM
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She is going to be living in the Mission District. I'm not conversant with the area, so I imagine she'd travel for a good mechanic.
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Old 03-09-2016, 11:29 AM
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I'm not familiar with shops in SF proper. There are several within an hour's drive of SF, however. Is she willing to travel that far?

More importantly, what Porsche is she considering, air-or water-cooled? Will this be a weekend car for leisurely driving, or is she into autocross and/or track events? In any case, recommend she hook up with the local PCA region.
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Old 03-09-2016, 12:35 PM
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So first off the Mission District in SF is a pretty horrible place to live if you own a nice car, unless you have a private garage to keep your car safe. There is a real socioeconomic mix in that area and lots of beater cars that will park right up onto your bumper and/or give you a door ding without batting an eye... So I'd caution your friend about investing in a nice car while living in that area (make that living in San Francisco in general) unless she has a very safe place to park it.

As for local mechanics shops, there is an indy in SF called "The Stable" that knows there way around Porsches well. My father used to have his air-cooled race and show cars built and maintained there. The original mechanic/owner has retired since then, but I continue to hear good things about them. I actually went in there and talked at length with one of their mechanics when I was on the hunt for my 993, and they had plenty of sound advice to provide.

As Joe asked above, air-cooled or water-cooled? In other words is she looking for new and modern with all the convenient creature comforts or old and valuable with all of the quirks that come with an air-cooled oil burning Porsche? How about 911 vs Cayman vs Boxster vs other? Any general ideas of what she's looking for?
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Old 03-09-2016, 04:11 PM
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Thanks for the replies, guys. Great information.

She is most interested in a sporty car that has a "Porsche" badge. I tried to steer her to a Miata or MR2 first, but she wants the name. I think at most, she will engage in legal, yet spirited driving from time to time.

I think she'd be best off with a well-maintained 924/944 myself and she liked the look of those. But she has also seen a Boxster and liked that, but I think I've talked her out of it because of her 2 German shepherds.

I will let her know about The Stable as well as any other shops that are mentioned.

BTW: I've heard about the Mission District; never been there personally; but this young lady pretty much consistently chooses the roughest places to live. I really never get a vote on this part.

Thanks!

Drew
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Old 03-09-2016, 04:17 PM
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Oh, almost forgot. Yes, I'm sure she'd drive an hour for a good mechanic.
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Old 03-09-2016, 04:19 PM
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Can of worms. Opened.

I feel for you man. I fear this is going to be a painful process for you.
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Old 03-09-2016, 05:44 PM
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I think 987.1 Boxster will be her best bet. Great value for money. There was one I passed (bought a 997.2) that is still available and a good deal. PM me for details.

For service I go to Modderman Service in Mountain View. Small shop but honest guy.
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Old 03-09-2016, 10:24 PM
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I started with a 986 2.5L Boxster and loved that car. Only reason I sold it was to make the jump to the 911 world.

So first off no proper Porsche is going to situate your friend and her two German Shepherds well. For that kind of space your talking Panamera/Cayenne/Macan. So if we wants a sporty dog hauler, I'd look at an Audi wagon, a Subi WRX wagon, or a VW GTI/R32.

All that said, life in SF is so much easier these days without a car so I'd recommend she just try the car-free lifestyle a bit.

If she's ultimately set on an entry-level Porsche, I'd give the 986 Boxster S (2002-2004) a solid look. Get one with the clutch and Intermediate Shaft Bearing already replaced. Great little cars that are lots of fun and not so rare that you'll want to murder so one over a door ding. The 987.1 Cayman and Boxsters are decent cars but changing the IMS bearing on them is far more difficult/nearly impossible.

At most the 986 will hold her and one dog at a time.
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:15 AM
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Old 03-10-2016, 01:01 AM
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Originally Posted by mrwonder View Post
I think 987.1 Boxster will be her best bet. Great value for money. There was one I passed (bought a 997.2) that is still available and a good deal. PM me for details.

For service I go to Modderman Service in Mountain View. Small shop but honest guy.
Thanks. I'll pass that along.

Originally Posted by Spyder_Man View Post
I started with a 986 2.5L Boxster and loved that car. Only reason I sold it was to make the jump to the 911 world.

So first off no proper Porsche is going to situate your friend and her two German Shepherds well. For that kind of space your talking Panamera/Cayenne/Macan. So if we wants a sporty dog hauler, I'd look at an Audi wagon, a Subi WRX wagon, or a VW GTI/R32.

All that said, life in SF is so much easier these days without a car so I'd recommend she just try the car-free lifestyle a bit.

If she's ultimately set on an entry-level Porsche, I'd give the 986 Boxster S (2002-2004) a solid look. Get one with the clutch and Intermediate Shaft Bearing already replaced. Great little cars that are lots of fun and not so rare that you'll want to murder so one over a door ding. The 987.1 Cayman and Boxsters are decent cars but changing the IMS bearing on them is far more difficult/nearly impossible.

At most the 986 will hold her and one dog at a time.
I'm in full agreement with all the above. I'm not a Porsche guy, but have always kept a weather eye for things Porsche (I hold an A&P ticket, so Boxer engines fascinate me). The IMS issue is something I keep up on, more or less.

Thanks!
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Old 03-10-2016, 03:14 AM
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Just an update: I have convinced the young lady involved to live without a car for awhile, and talk to folks in the area first, including at least one Porsche mechanic, before making any decision. The good people here who responded, provided me sufficient information to back up that sensible point.

I'm a big fan of judiciousness when it comes to something as major as owning a performance car.

Thank you all for your input.

Last edited by 120mm; 03-10-2016 at 05:26 AM.
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:18 PM
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Sounds like things are working out in the proper direction. Acclimating to the SF lifestyle should come first. The money saved by not paying for the car, plus private parking rent can go to a lot of Lyft/Uber rides around the city. She can always rent a Zipcar or some other short-term car share when she and the dogs want to leave the city.

Then when the time is right to go car shopping talk with some mechanics and members of the local PCA chapters, if she's dead set on the Porsche lineage.
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Old 03-10-2016, 12:29 PM
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I have enough trouble with my 2x 30 lbs french bulldogs in the 911, can't imagine having a bigger dog for trips.

I live in the city as well definitely do not recommend a nice car without proper garage parking. The mentally ill/drugged up addicts (excuse the non-PC) will smash your window just to sleep in your car! I've seen it happen and SFPD won't do a damn thing. Shame.
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