Mike Mirsberger bought his box last November, and he’s already paid it off.
The ASE Master Certified Technician works at the Dodge City dealership in Milwaukee, Wis., and bought his box after running out of room for all of his tools.
“It’s home. I’m here from six in the morning until six at night,” said Mike.
Because Mike spends so much time at the shop, it only makes sense to customize his work space to make it more livable.
Mike equipped his Mac Tools’ Macsimizer series setup with extras like a DVD player with surround sound, a pizza oven and a custom-painted refrigerator to match his bright orange box.
Other techs even take advantage of his extras, making features like the pizza oven more practical.
“(I use the pizza oven) probably twice a week,” said Mike. “Half the guys in the shop use it. I mean, a frozen pizza costs two bucks.”
Mike traded in his previous box for more room to keep all of his tools.
“This box was nice because it allowed me to do certain things like (organize tools),” explained Mike. “I do a great deal of heavy-duty dry mount stuff; rear ends — so I can separate drawers for what I’m doing too.”
Mike's favorite tool?
"This sounds funny, but this is an extension of my arm," said Mike, pulling out a worn sledge hammer, missing half the handle. "Anybody in this shop that works with me knows that hammer."
Mike works as a mentor to new tech’s starting out in the industry. So far, he’s had four students over the past six years.
“My apprentices actually know where more stuff is than I do,” said Mike. “I have gone out trying to buy the same tool over again, and they’re on the truck going, ‘You already have that.’ I’m not kidding.”
Mike has been turning wrenches since 1983. Employed by Dodge City for more than 10 years, he competes with other techs to see who can equip their toolboxes with the most extravagant accessories.
Mike bought the box so he had more room for his tools, but also to show off to the other guys in the shop.
"We’ve got a lot of money in toolboxes around here," said Mike. "Everything that’s in here, I probably have $100,000 (into the tools and toolbox)."
His biggest competitor? Dave Jadat, one of the other 14 techs that work in their division of the dealership. Jadat has kept up with his own Matco Tools' Big Horn Edition toolbox, featuring extras like a mobile tool cart, fridge and a TV with a gaming console.
To see the competition, check out Dave’s box in next month’s section of Big-Time Boxes.