Local Car Enthusiast Turns Her Passion into a Mission

A local car enthusiast knows cars inside out; taking them apart piece-by-piece  and then putting them back together. She’s not just following her passion here; she’s a woman on a mission.

FOX 29 Photojournalist Bill Rohrer has her story.

For Rachel De Barros, there is nothing like taking apart an engine. Her love of cars blossomed in college while trying to repay her school loans.

“I loaded up a back pack with a simple oil change kit, a couple of sockets and ratchets,” she told FOX 29.

She handed out pretty pink flyers with her name on them—advertising very simple car repairs.

“I just changed the flyer to white and put the name Jimmy on it and I started getting some calls. I would show up for the job and they would say where is Jimmy?  Ahhh, Jimmy double booked himself again. He does this all the time," Rachel explained she would say.

Rachel picked up her tricks of the trade by interning at a nearby garage. Then, she decided to buy a 1973 Plymouth Barracuda on Craig’s list.

“This is the first car I bought.  I really wanted to get my hands dirty building something.  The more I got into it and started to take it apart—I quickly found out I was way over my head with this car,” she explained.

So she went online for help.

"I started posting pictures online with this is where I am at. What is the best next step for me to go with this project?" she said.

That sparked the idea for her own website—called GearHead Diva

"It really touches the millennial generation and how they are looking at cars and a lot of it they are so entrenched with their phones or what is going on with movies or Netflix and it is really taking cars and bringing it into that world to introduce to somebody that never worked with their hands and thought wow that is cool—I could do that," Rachel explained.

The website features anything from choosing the “Right diameter exhaust Pipe” to the “Common V8 Engine Firing Orders”.  She has learned basic body repairs, too.

Currently, Rachel is working as a co-host on the 4th season of All Girls Garage airing Saturday mornings on Velocity.

 

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