HOUGHTON - With the new shop located just minutes from downtown, Ron's Auto Body proves it'll go the extra mile to serve customers and their devotion to the area still continues.
Ron Chopp, who established the business in 1975, opened their new eco-friendly facility on M-26, on the right just west of Festival Foods.
It's very much a family operation for the Chopps, as his wife Mary has worked with him for 28 years, their son Mike, the third generation of auto body repair, and their daughter Rosanna, a junior at Michigan Technological University, all lend a hand in the business.
Ron’s Auto Body owners Ron and Mary Chopp, and their children Mike and Rosanna, are seen in the office of the shop’s new location on M-26 in Houghton. Far left shows a Bennett Visable Gas Pump, that was a gift to Mike from his grandmother, Rosemary Schwenk.
"We needed more room and it is like a hobby to me," Ron said. "We enjoy restoring vehicles with safety in mind. Mike by far does the best bodywork I have ever seen. He is extremely driven and such a perfectionist. We are proud of the caliber of work he does."
Ron's Auto Body specializes in full-service collision and auto body repair on both foreign and domestic vehicles. ASE Master-level achieved, Ron is certified in painting and refinishing; structural analysis, damage repair; mechanical and electrical components; and estimating.
While customer satisfaction is a top priority for Ron's Auto Body, so is caring for the environment. For that reason, the shop is equipped with a state-of-the-art down draft paint spray booth, which has its own high-efficiency natural gas air make-up furnace and filtration system.
"The outside air is actually filtered three times before it comes out of the ceiling and then the filtered exhaust panels catch the over spray so nothing goes outside," Ron said.
Down draft spray booths are known to provide a smooth and clean finish, which is baked on. The excellent lighting guarantees optimal color matching.
The shop also includes a computerized frame for unibody alignment and estimating, solvent recycling system, natural gas high-efficiency furnace, rotary air compressor and dryer, and, an air-filtration system, which prevents debris from exiting the facility.
The main equipment uses variable-frequency drive motors, which automatically adjusts a motor's speed to match output requirements and save energy.
"Our main goal was to make the shop as efficient as possible," he said. "High-efficiency lights and insulation in the floors, ceiling and foamed-in walls of the shop help keep the temperature comfortable."
On top of that, Mary said, vehicles being serviced this time of year have a chance to thaw and dry.
"First we wash the vehicle, pull the floor mats to dry, then cover what is necessary to protect your vehicle," she said. "Plus, we provide a free clean-up and detail with each job. When your vehicle comes here, we treat it as if it were our own."
When making a claim, she added, "we will work with your insurance company, provide you with a clean loaner car. or pick you up and deliver your vehicle to make it as easy as possible."
"And remember," she said, "you have the right to choose who you want to care for your vehicle."
Born and raised in the Copper Country, Ron began working on cars at a young age.
He learned the ropes from his uncles, who were body men, and his father, Leo, was a truck mechanic. By the time Ron was 14 years old, he was painting vehicles in his parents' garage.
Having previously worked for MJ Electric following graduation, Ron found he was more devoted to auto repair, and thus, Ron's Auto Body was born.
When Ron and Mary decided to open their new shop on M-26, they wanted to replicate the style of the automotive business his uncle owned in South Range. An old black and white photograph of that shop hangs in their office today.
"We enjoy history and we like the old-school look," Mary said. The interior of Ron's Auto Body features shiny, galvanized steel walls, which reflect the lighting. And, customers will be pleasantly surprised when they find the air is clean.
While many people thought Ron was retired, the fact is, he enjoys working on vehicles with his family.
"As for the customers, there's one thing they can be sure of and that is a job done right. All work is guaranteed," Ron said. "And, so is your satisfaction."
For more information, computerized estimates or to make an appointment, call Ron's Auto Body at 482-7272, 482-0618 or visit ronsautobodyandsales.com.
Editor's note: This feature is part of a paid advertising package purchased by Ron's Auto Body of Houghton. Businesses interested in being featured on the Business page may call Yvonne Robillard at 483-2220.