The Society of Collision Repair Specialists (SCRS) Education Committee reviewed their top picks for gear during the presentation “Kool Tools from the SEMA Show and Beyond” during an open board meeting Tuesday.
Committee members compile the list annually by visiting with vendors at SEMA and learning about products. The group then votes on which products will make the list.
Here’s a look at this year’s list:
Kye Yeung, European Motor Car Works president and past SCRS chairman, said he’s been using the steamer to remove paint perfection film (PPF) from vehicles. The film is applied to protect paint but can be difficult to remove for repairs.
“PPF is very prominent in Southern California,” Yeung said. “Before we can do repairs, we have to remove this film. Sometimes when vehicles have been repainted, the paint comes off with film and we’ve had that happen.”
Yeung said he immediately purchased the steamer and was impressed.
“You just use the steam and it pulls it [film] off,” Yeung said.
The steamer can also be used to remove decals or emblems on vehicles, he said.
Yeung said he’s also found the KENT bumper tool helpful in his shop. He showed a video where a technician was able to push damage on a bumper out in seconds using the tool.
“It was a pretty severely damaged bumper,” Yeung said.
He added that the tool is lightweight to use.
Amber Alley, Barsotti’s Body & Fender manager and current SCRS chairman, said the anti-chip and underbody coating product is easier to use than others she’s tried on the market.
A gun is used with the water-based product, Alley said. The coating must sit for six hours before any next steps are taken, she said.
“We will typically do it either in the morning or at night,” Alley said. “Then you can sand it and paint it.”
Alley noted the product leaves clean lines and can be used in all 50 states since it is water-based.
Dominic Martino, Gold Coast Auto Body president/co-owner and SCRS director-at-large, said he was impressed with the magnetic tool. He uses it in his shop to hold aerosol cans and parts.
“The techs love them,” Martino said. “They are durable. You can throw these things on the ground and they don’t break.”
Martino said he also was impressed with the family who owns the business.
“They are great people,” Martino said.
Andrew Batenhorst, Pacific BMW Collision Center manager and SCRS national director, said the INNOVATIVE’s X-stand has been helping repairers by holding items, such as bumpers, fenders, and doors for some time.
However, a new X-Stand with support arms helps repairers for larger items including longer bumper covers, which often require two people to hold the object.
“We’ve been using it for six to eight months and the techs love it,” Batenhorst said.
He said swivel joints make it easy to move around and it collapses for small shops with little space.
Scannable Tape Label
Batenhorst said a code on the tape interacts with a Shuretape application. The code can be scanned and information uploaded to the application. Others can then scan it to find the information.
He said his shop has been using the tape for about a year, and it can be customized to the shop’s use.
Examples of ways it could be used include checklists, customizable quality control processes, inventory management, and safety and repair planning.
“If there was a complex part taken apart, the tech could record a small video of that,” Batenhorst said. “They could scan that into this.”
The tape could then be placed with the part or possibly on a vehicle window, he said.
Weld Test Stand
Dito Diez, Goliath Carts president and CEO, presented his company’s destructive weld test stand during the meeting.
“We have a group of people that we work with when we develop all of our products,” Diez said.
This includes those in the industry from repairers to shops, he said.
Diez said attachments on the stand can move 360 degrees for overhead, horizontal, or vertical welds.
A wet/dry box is attached for coupons and it has spots for labels.
The company offers a mobile and bolted version he said.
Dominic Martino, Gold Coast Auto Body and SCRS director-at-large, talks about Kool Tools on Jan. 16, 2024 during an SCRS board meeting. (Teresa Moss/RDN)