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Kim's Auto Body Set Up for the Future with its USI Booth

Kim's Auto Body Set Up for the Future with its USI Booth | CleanRoom PaintShop

Proactive body shop owners think about tomorrow and the next day rather than being stuck in yesterday or the day before. They consider the big picture and prepare for their next strategic move in the ever-changing world of collision repair. They are entrepreneurs instead of being technicians or managers and that's why they pursue things like training, education and top-tier equipment that will enable them to do a better job than the shop down the street.

In this case, James Kim, the owner at Kim's Auto Body in Santa Clara, CA acquired a USI Italia spray booth in order to be ready for when his business reaches its pinnacle. With his shop growing exponentially every year, Kim is doing everything he can to adapt and continue to provide an exemplary finished product. USI Italia is playing a major role as he pursues his goals, as he anticipates $3 million in sales this year out of a 12,000 square foot facility with a team of 10 employees.

Kim, 36, had no plans to take over the family's shop, but when his late father Keene got cancer, he had to step in and begin running the business back in 2006. It was a trial by fire scenario, but by working hard and learning from wherever he could, he was able to grow sales 500% in the first 5 years.

Jim's Auto Body 1

Owner James Kim (left) at Kim’s Auto Body with and one of the shop’s original employees Duke Van, age 75. Kim had no industry experience when he took over his family business.

Part of his plan was to obtain the finest equipment and tools available in the collision repair industry and train his crew about how to use them efficiently, Kim said. "I'm not afraid to invest in the best equipment out there on the market, because I know it will pay off over time. When I was first introduced to the USI Italia spray booths and saw the Chronotech, it was definitely something different. It was definitely a more advanced booth built with a lot of modern technology. So, we sat down with Rob Dolezal, from Last Call Marketing and he outlined all of the booth's features for us. We were very impressed by its capabilities that we decided to move forward with them."

After integrating the USI booth into his production, Kim could quickly see the myriad benefits associated with the booth and how it would make the lives of his painter and prepper easier overall. "Our painter was a little reluctant at first, because he is a veteran painter and was comfortable with our old booth," Kim said. "But once he realized the booth was able to cure our water based paint without blowers he was sold. We are using PPG Envirobase and with the airflow and EPS system we are able to cure base coats and clear coats really efficiently"

As the shop starts getting busier, Kim said that he will be able to paint 1-2 more cars every day by using their USI booth. "When our anticipated growth continues and we ramp up, I'm more than confident that this booth will help us with our cycle times without sacrificing any quality. Our Chronotech's EPS System with its touch screen is so state-of-the-art that we are still learning all of its capabilities and finding out better ways to utilize it."

By working closely with the people from USI Italia, Kim's painter and prepper, who is also a second painter when needed, are getting better at using the booth. "Stefano Moretto from USI has made us all believers," Kim said. "He knows more about paint booths and airflow than anyone I know. Going to the USI from our old booth was like going from a flip phone to an iPhone. There’s no going back”

Kim is now poised and prepared for when his car count goes up, because he now has USI Italia and its support team watching his back, he said. "Their virtual support helps us for when we have questions, especially if we want to customize the different recipes for various applications. We're connected to the Internet and the experts at USI are right there when we need them. A piece of any high-quality equipment comes with great support and USI is surely no exception. I look forward to working with them and using the booth to reach our new potential"

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Jim's Auto Body Believes in USI Italia for All the Right Reasons | CleanRoom PaintShop

Client's Testimonial

They looked at our production process and helped us to set the booth and prep deck up that was ideal for the way we operate. We love the fact that these booths create a finished product flawlessly each and every time while doing it efficiently. They are also very durable, so you know they’re going to last a long, long time. I am a huge advocate for USI ITALIA because we are saving money and time and all of my painters love using them every day.

Battle Born Autobody
Peter Sadabseng
Reno, NV