SPARKS, NV (12-26) – This off-season the site is focused on small shops that abound in our area. One of them is Nasty Engines Machine Shop, a small company that offers high quality work, products and service.
The shop’s goal is fast, quality service at a competitive price and taking any factory-stock motor to a nasty engine.
Eric Henry started the business but being a very hands-on owner was unavailable so his manager Dan Foote was the pinch hitter for this interview.
“I was there when it was starting to be set up and was on its way to becoming a company but not everything was ready,” Foote said.
Henry opened the company in June 2015 and it’s located right at the northwest corner of South Rock Boulevard and Hymer Way. That intersection is the first stop light south of the I-80 overpass.
Both Henry and Foote have a background in this type of work.
“I’ve spent a good part of my life, ever since I was 20 in the industry and I’m 39 now,” Foote said. “Eric previously worked at a location where they did engine rebuilds, more of a production style as they built large quantities of engines and stuff. So his background in the past is that he had worked in a machine shop as well.”
Foote used to work for other machine shops in the area and is the manager. And he’s seen a bunch of changes since the company was started.
“Things have changed a lot since we opened but ever since the onset of the company it’s done nothing but grow and grow,” he said. “You run into changes of employees and stuff along that line, some for better, some for worse and there were two previous people to me that were mangers of the shop.”
At first radio ads were used to let people know who they were and where their location. But that has changed since they only got a few customers from that.
“I think over the years the majority of our new customers has been word of mouth than anything, which is the best way to earn new business in my opinion. If you do a good job then someone is going to tell their friend or they heard it from a friend that there is a new place in town that is honest and does good work. I think that’s the majority of the work we’ve received,” he said.
Variety is the name of the game, as Nasty Engines works on all types of motors and are ready for anything a customer brings them.
“As far as the workload is concerned we’re just over whelmed with the amount of work that we’ve got to get done. We have a lot of engine builds an it can range from stock Jeep rebuilds, someone’s blown big block Chevy, we do a lot of Harley stuff, Industrial and Marine on top of that,” he said.
While they work on all types of motors there is one type that accounts for the many of the jobs.
“The majority we do are V-8’s, primarily Chevys, that’s been the bread and butter of any shop like a small block or big block,” he said. “You get MoPar guys in and Ford guys in between but you’ll probably do three or four Chevys for every one of those you’ll see.”
He also sees other GM motors from Pontiacs, Buicks and Oldsmobiles but he thinks there’s a reason for seeing so many Chevy products.
“I think it’s more based on the availability of a cheap Chevy engine and the inexpensive parts that are available for it. It’s the go to engine to build as far as the hot rodder is concerned. So I don’t think it has anything to do with longevity,” he said.
Foote feels that except for some specific issues all the products whether they are Ford, Chevy, Doge or Chrysler products do the same thing and basically have the same internal parts.
“So I don’t necessarily see more longevity out of a certain brand than another one. I think it’s just a matter of the after market has really embraced the small block Chevy engine,” he said. “And now its transformed to the LS engine, a later model of the small block Chevy. So it has modernized over time, we see a lot more late model engines even in hot rods and stuff like that.”
Currently he added about a half the shop’s business is working on racing engines and 75% of that is for performance upgrades. They do drag cars, circle track cars, high performance boat engines as well as other marine and stock rebuilds.
If a customer wants certain brands used for the work they can be supplied. Foote added they have the ability to get whatever the customer needs or wants.
“We don’t particularly hold any brand above another but we’re very loyal to using ARP Fasteners and we do a lot of work with DART that makes blocks, cylinder heads and stuff like that. So there are certain brands we prefer but we still allow the customer what ever they want,” he said.
There are other places including some big box stores where a person can buy motors. But if there is a problem then that customer has a process to deal with getting things made right.
Foote explained an advantage of having the work done locally is that problems will be dealt with quickly.
“We really stand up for the products that we do, will back it and do what ever we need to do to make the customer happy,” he said.
Backing this up are workers having access to a shop full of state of the art equipment that includes balancing, machining, grinding and other things. Another piece of equipment unique to the shop is a state of the art Rottler F79A Multi Purpose Engine Block machine used for boring.
All this equipment allows the shop to make better products because they have been machined to a higher standard.
Looking forward Foote said, “I think there is only room to improve over time, obviously having to hire more employees if things keep on the pace they are going right now. Just keep building the company and keep improving the equipment we already have.”
For a full list of the services provided by the shop as well as a way to contact them readers are encouraged to check out their website at, www.nastyengines.com. They also can be found on Face Book.
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We now have five very appreciated sponsors that are helping support this site. Please patronize them as they support your sport.
Our newest is Big Valley Honda and is the first dealer we have as a sponsor. They sell everything from motorcycles, UTV’s, ATV’s and about anything else things one could want.
Our first sponsor is a full service motorcycle shop, Reno Motorsports and they too have a full service shop as well as about anything a rider could want.
They are located at 964 Terminal way, by Mill Street and their website is, www.rms-renomotorsports.com.
Sponsor PJ & Co Restaurant and Saloon located at 1590 Wells Avenue in Reno is familiar to most in the riding lifestyle.
Good food, great place and they have Bike Night every Wednesday. For further information please check their website at, www.pjandco.net.
Concours Body Shop, owned by racer and race supporter Gil Grieve, is a business doing quality repair work on cars and trucks.
The business is located at 240 Telegraph Street in Reno and their website is, www.concoursbodyshop.net.
If you are into karting or want the most cost effective way to start racing then check out Nevada Kart Sport, our only full service kart shop in this region.
The shop has moved to 894 Deming Way in Sparks and their website is, www.nevadakartsport.com.
Have a business targeted toward the motorcycle, motorsport or off road demographic? Well we are looking for more sponsors.
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