Autobody News: Shop Owner Loves the Family of Wizards Products

Press Release updated: Oct 24, 2017 11:00 PDT

When Neil Bateman was working at a large collision center in 1989, he was visited by a sales rep while who showed him a line of cleaning, buffing and polishing products that immediately impressed him.

He bought a few things, but he didn’t know the sales rep was actually the company’s owner, and that relationship led to Bateman’s son, Adam, becoming their Director of Marketing. The company’s name is Wizards Products and the owner who visited Bateman’s shop that day was John Schlumpberger, the innovative designer of this line that is popular with collision professionals worldwide.

“He showed me the Mist-N-Shine and Shine Master products back then. I told him that I would try them,” he said. “I always tell any vendor trying to sell me something new that it’s not my opinion that matters, it’s what the guys in the back think about it. They’re the ones who will be using it, and if they don’t like it, they won’t use it. The techs at that shop liked the products because they work!”

We use Wizards’ Mystic Cut Compound in our buffing process. We’re able to get the job done with one product versus the three from another brand we used to use.

Neil Bateman, Owner, Wright County Collision

Bateman, Sr., 62, is now the owner of Wright County Collision in Buffalo, MN, a shop he acquired nine years ago after 22 years spent managing a large production dealership collision center. Wright County Collision repairs 10 vehicles weekly in a 5,000 sq. ft. shop with four combination techs. The shop does 60 percent collision work with the remainder being classic car restorations, customization, and repair.

Bateman entered the collision repair industry literally by accident at age 16. “Immediately after getting my driver’s license, I crashed my father’s 1963 Ford Galaxy,” he said. “After the accident, my dad took all of the money I was saving for a car and gave me the keys to his Galaxy. ‘It’s your car now,’ he told me. ‘Now go fix it.’ I had no choice, so I straightened the frame and hung a front end on the car. That’s where it all began,” he said.

Bateman has been able to pursue his passion for classic cars by restoring vehicles for clients at Wright County Collision. His personal auto collection is impressive. It features a 1950 Ford Business Coupe that he bought when he graduated from high school, a 1927 Ford Roadster, 1961 Ford Ranchero, and a 1937 Ford pickup. He’s currently working on a 1961 Ford Unibody pickup.

Wizards Products play an integral role in the daily production at Wright County Collision. “We love using Mist-N-Shine because it’s easy to work use and does an amazing job,” Bateman said.

“When we take a car to a show — or even just before delivering a collision repair job to a customer — we can spray it on and wipe it off and it looks wonderful. It takes all the excess dust and dirt off and has never failed us. I’ve tried the other products out there and can tell you that it’s better. It sprays on and wipes off a lot easier and brings the shine up better with less effort.”

In addition, Bateman and his crew use the Tire & Vinyl Shine to prepare vehicles for the final presentation, he said. “We always like to detail and clean them up to stand them up taller than before they came here, so we wipe down all the interiors and even shine up the tires to make the whole vehicle look better.”

Bateman uses a lot of the Wizards Products line. “We use Wizards’ Mystic Cut Compound in our buffing process. We’re able to get the job done with one product versus the three from another brand we used to use. We follow that up their Shine Master to give the paint a great shine and protection. It gives the paint the wet look our customers love. Once we’re done polishing, we use Wipe Down to remove any compounding residue from the cracks and crevices. We’ve also recently picked up their new Wizard21 Big Throw Polisher. We’ve used it on a couple of our restoration jobs so far and love it. It’s super easy to use and makes no swirls!”

Bateman gives an “A” grade to the product support at Wizards Products, but he does admit that he has an inside connection at the company. “My son, Adam, and I will discuss the products at family dinners, usually two every month,” he said. “If he doesn’t have an answer, he’ll get a hold of someone at the company and John, the owner of Wizards, will call me. It’s pretty rare in this industry that you can call an owner of a company and ask him a question directly. But that’s the kind of person he is and that’s the type of company that Wizards is. I know they give this type of customer service to everyone, so it’s not just me.”

Wright County Collision 
Buffalo, MN 
wrightcountycollision.com

Company at a Glance..
Type: Collision Repair and Automotive Restoration
Facility Employees: Four
In Business Since: 2008
Locations: One
Combined Production Space: 5,000 square feet

Wizards Products
Hanover, MN 
wizardsproducts.com

To read more body shop profiles like this and stay current on collision repair industry news, visit autobodynews.com.

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For more information, contact Bill Pierce, Digital Marketing Manager at Autobody News magazine.

Source: Autobody News

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About the Author: Carrie Brunner

Carrie Brunner grew up in a small town in northern New Brunswick. She studied chemistry in college, graduated, and married her husband one month later. They were then blessed with two baby boys within the first four years of marriage. Having babies gave their family a desire to return to the old paths – to nourish their family with traditional, homegrown foods; rid their home of toxic chemicals and petroleum products; and give their boys a chance to know a simple, sustainable way of life. They are currently building a homestead from scratch on two little acres in central Texas. There’s a lot to be done to become somewhat self-sufficient, but they are debt-free and get to spend their days living this simple, good life together with their five young children. Carrie writes mostly on provincial stories.
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