The Elephant in the Room - How Many Lifer's / Second Generation Carpet People we have here?

#1
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Grant Baverstock
I was chatting with @Rolland the Gunslinger (who needs to do the right thing by Mikey's Boards and come post in some bloody threads); and he mentioned something really profound.

He told me that he always feels a bit self conscious posting here because he understand's he's under the eyes of some very experienced people. Master Cleaners who have been at the game a lifetime, and their children too in many cases.

I'm embarrassed to say I've never given it a thought.

But now I am really curious. How many here have been at this as long as they've been working? How many were born into the business? How many have raised kids into the business?

I'm the first in my family and didn't start my earnest carpet cleaning life until 2012 when I was 34. A late-newcomer in anybody's book.
 
#5
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Second gen here.. Mom was pregnant when pops entered the biz..

Cleaned everyday since I was home schooled at 13yo.. Took 3years off when I needed a break from my pops..

I try to learn something new everyday.. MB helped me see a bigger picture and the technical advise is second to none..
 
#7
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Since 2002. But I didn't know much about carpet cleaning, or even running a carpet cleaning business until around 2010.

I dropped out of college that I was learning to be IT, and tried to be a slimy car salesman for a year. Then I took a 6month class to be a slimy private detective spying on horny husbands cheating on their wives. I got ripped off (thank goodness) from the guy that gave me the job offer before I took the class, so I threw that idea out the window. Then I took a class to be a real estate loser. Thank the Lord I dropped out of that class also, because I would've failed miserably with the economic suicide in 2008. After learning how much I hated school, I borrowed some money to buy a beat up old trailer with a oil leaking prochem in it and got in business doing this.

I guess I'm second generation
 
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#9
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Second gen.

I've been cleaning since I was knee high to a grashopper. Its the only job I've ever had. :redface:

In the 70's we were shampoo, then portable steam, then the first to have a TM. Much later the first "Restoration" company.

My father started this business in 1967, Fifty years ago.

This is 1973 State of the Art! :winky:

State of the Art Carpet Cleaning Equipment 1973.jpg


Me in 1976

20170218_101632.jpg
 
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#10
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My father started in the dry cleaning (clothing/draperies) business in the late 50's, carpet cleaning in 1962.

I helped on my first carpet cleaning job in 1969, but at that young age (9) it was just filling and emptying his cleaning equipment on commercial jobs at night. In the early to mid 70's I was working on rugs in plant, janitorial jobs at night, and restoration jobs on weekends and evenings. We were doing what is now called "trauma scene cleanup", but back then we just called them "suicide jobs". We used no personal protection equipment, and just held a rag over our faces and quickly fogged the room to get the stench down to merely nauseating so that we could work.

My last year of having a paycheck in the name of "West Penn Cleaning Company" was 1977. I've worked in our supply and training business since then.

4o years...it just hit me!
 
#11
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He told me that he always feels a bit self conscious posting here because he understand's he's under the eyes of some very experienced people. Master Cleaners who have been at the game a lifetime, and their children too in many cases.
Never be intimidated. We are all just cleaners like yourselves.

We don't bite....well, not hard anyway! :winky:
 
#12
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Never be intimidated. We are all just cleaners like yourselves.
Most of us have not just made more mistakes than you have; we've likely made more mistakes than you will ever make.

Despite some good natured teasing, or at times comments that seem cranky,the advice is coming from people who care enough to hope you'll learn from our mistakes, instead of experiencing them yourself.
 
#13
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I'm a one and out hack. Nobody to pass it on to. At 15 I had a job at women's world vacuuming and cleaning mirrors. Moved up to Janitor at 16 at one of the local schools where I cleaned my first carpet using a portable and a five gallon bucket with holes in that was our shower feed lol.

I worked many other jobs also until I went in the army. Got out and worked a whole lot of other dead end jobs until I went back to another school with my old boss.

Sold vacuums and worked for a couple chem dry s before working a butt load of other jobs till I got a job running folding carton nachines. Did that till I got work in the machining industry,mostly aviation work.

Started this business at 42 after having a life long heart disease fixed. I was weak and depressed and decided to do something for myself to get healthy and make more money so I bought a bane and haven't looked back.

Been through a lot since starting. Divorce,got a 1 bedroom apartment so I could support the ex and kids till they graduated. Lost my driver's license. Thought for sure I wouldn't live this long.

But everything is back on track now and I'm living the dream I've always had. Just too bad it took fifty years to get here.

I've been a big doofus on the board for ten years. No plan on stopping now. I always appreciate the new guys who draw attention away from me lol.
 
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Most of us have not just made more mistakes than you have; we've likely made more mistakes than you will ever make.

Despite some good natured teasing, or at times comments that seem cranky,the advice is coming from people who care enough to hope you'll learn from our mistakes, instead of experiencing them yourself.
POST OF THE YEAR
 
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#16
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Scott Warrington
Started cleaning windows in 1967, so I am coming up on 50 years in the cleaning industry. Worked for my dad's company. First carpet cleaning was about Aug 1969. I continued cleaning of various types, mostly janitorial while working at a few other jobs. Pretty much cleaning only since 1980.
 
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A little over 25 years when I got out. Out 10 or 12 years. Easing back in now and will probably do it until the end...I enjoy it. Pretty sure my Son will be with me at least part time then I have a 2 Grand Sons that I will put to work down the road. Here are a couple old pictures from1980's. We had 2 vans this one and the other one was white with gray/grey lettering.
oldcleaningvan.jpg
oldcleanvan2.jpg
Turbo tech machines made by Les Scott
 
#21
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Shane Tiegs
Started solo in 1981 with a Deep Steam portable. Those were some hard and lean years. Took on a night time job cleaning Denny's and Wendy's restaurants for another local cleaner. I used his Turbo Tech cds, that was my first hand at using a truck mount. 1987 I bought a used Turbo Tech slide in from Parker-Scott. Still have and use it on occasions although it has been rebuilt and modified. The kids have very good jobs so won't have anyone to take over when I'm done. I've already started to slow down, maybe another few years.
 
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Justin Foulk
Over 25 years for me! Geesh when I think about it I really feel old. Started pulling hoses and filling sprayers at about 11. Once I got my license at 16 I was on the night crew cleaning restaurants. My parents as well as my aunt and uncle both had carpet cleaning businesses so between the two thats what I did growing up. Bought my parents out in 01 and the rest is history.
 
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3rd Generation (working on 4th)

50 years this year family started in industry

Even made some of the machines that were the Deep Steam but our version when bought the other part of that company were know as SteamTronics

I have been a band director also for 25 years while doing some cleaning...and then back into it hardcore....both my brothers did other things and then back to the business.

Dad 80 years old this spring and still loves the business....he was band director too....wonder where I got this....

old Steamtronics portable.jpg
 
#29
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Loren Egland
3rd Generation (working on 4th)

50 years this year family started in industry

Even made some of the machines that were the Deep Steam but our version when bought the other part of that company were know as SteamTronics

I have been a band director also for 25 years while doing some cleaning...and then back into it hardcore....both my brothers did other things and then back to the business.

Dad 80 years old this spring and still loves the business....he was band director too....wonder where I got this....

View attachment 70580
Thanks for that Deep Steam picture. That was the competition, and of course this thread also had a picture of a Steam Genie portable that was also competition.

Competition for what, you ask? Why my SteamWay 400 portable.
IMG_0102.JPG

This is the machine I stared with in 1970. The steam method was in its infancy. One truck owner operator ever since. Never used another cleaning method. I was 20 years old when I entered the business. Bought a 1966 Chevy van to start.
IMG_0098.JPG

I have only had a total of 5 trucks in all these years.
IMG_0097.JPG

IMG_0115.JPG

IMG_0101.JPG

IMG_0118.JPG

As you can see I had a business in Rochester Minnesota and one in Antioch California. Each business was started with a used van, but the next trucks were purchased new. I like this one the best.
IMG_0103.JPG

It is 20 years old now, but still a sweet set up for an owner operator.
 
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#30
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Mark Saiger
Thanks for that Deep Steam picture. That was the competition, and of course this thread also had a picture of a Steam Genie portable that was also competition.

Competition for what, you ask? Why my SteamWay 400 portable.
View attachment 70589
This is the machine I stared with in 1970. The steam method was in its infancy. One truck owner operator ever since. Never used another cleaning method. I was 20 years old when I entered the business. Bought a 1966 Chevy van to start.
View attachment 70596
I have only had a total of 5 trucks in all these years.
View attachment 70595
View attachment 70597
View attachment 70598
View attachment 70599
As you can see I had a business in Rochester Minnesota and one in Antioch California. Each business was started with a used van, but the next trucks were purchased new. I like this one the best.
View attachment 70600
It is 20 years old now, but still a sweet set up for an owner operator.
I wish I could find all the old family cleaning photos from the past... Will have to go visit my parents to find them someday.

So awesome to see all of this :)
 

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