FixYa Needs a New Expert Rank- Jedi
SolutionGuy signed up as an Expert in July of 2007. He was active through the end of 2007, but visited FixYa infrequently in 2008. In 2009 he’s come back in a big way, and we couldn’t be happier. SolutionGuy’s work is, in a word, dazzling. As a long-time technician and master of many trades, he knows exactly what his assistance is worth. Yet he gives it away every day, free of charge. As he puts it, “I realized that I was actually helping people. People like me (when I was almost destitute) barely paying the bills and living on peanut butter and bread. I wanted to help.”
SolutionGuy is able to give assistance in a variety of fields thanks to the wide range of vocations in his past. He has worked as a Journeyman Electrician, hydraulic system tech (in the Air Force), pipefitter, millwright, and an EPA-licensed air conditioner repairman. These fields may seem unrelated, but for SolutionGuy, they all flowed into one another quite naturally.
While training as a Journeyman Electrician, SolutionGuy had a revelation that electricity and gasses flowed like fluid. That led to the decision to work in pneumatic/hydraulic repair and maintenance when he later joined the Air Force. When he needed a change of scenery, the mechanical experience that he got working on F-16 Falcons (among other things) led to his choice to become a pipefitter working offshore in the Gulf of Mexico. SolutionGuy was well prepared for the mechanical requirements of his new profession, but blindsided by the math involved. He ultimately had to give himself a crash course in Algebra and Trigonometry, all while working 14-hour shifts. In 1995, he got a job as a millwright at an iron foundry. This required him to call upon all of the skills he had learned in his previous vocations- electrical, hydraulic, pneumatic, pipefitting, and blueprint and ISO reading. Being a millwright meant spending many nights out in the cold maintaining equipment crucial to the foundry’s operation. SolutionGuy was getting tired of the heavy, physically demanding work. He decided that this time around, he’d attempt to work a little smarter.
So SolutionGuy went back to school to get his EPA license to repair air conditioners. It was a grueling two days of classes (and he arrived late on the first one) before he earned his “Universal” license from the EPA. I don’t know if that’s a tribute to my tenacity, or a mark against the EPA on their stupidity,” he muses. Then came another realization- SolutionGuy wasn’t 25 anymore. His back had been injured in a 1997 car accident, leaving him unable to keep climbing up into attics to repair air ducts. After a lot of thought he chose to repair appliances, because that work combined all of his previous experience into a physically low-impact service that he could perform with minimal difficulty.
All this hard work and pressure formed a diamond. SolutionGuy now answers free questions exclusively, but he doesn’t compromise service just because there is no money in it for him. He has been known to spend over a month going back and forth with a user, troubleshooting an especially tricky problem. SolutionGuy combines detailed and well-written advice, annotated diagrams created specifically for the user’s problem, and an encouraging and supportive manner. He even employs humor in his solutions, letting funny images of Yoda or the Bride of Frankenstein lift the user’s spirits. However, no funny images were necessary to lift our spirits- SolutionGuy did that just by being the fabulous Expert that he is.