We recently got the chance to interview Jesse Barratt one of the owners and head technicians for Blue Sky Performance and Restoration. We were really impressed with some of the builds these hot rodders have put together. Be sure to check out some of their work HERE and see for yourself!
1. Could you tell us a little bit of the history of Blue Sky Performance and Restoration and how it got started?
Jeff and I have known each other since we were 7, we grew up down the street from each other, were college roomates and Pennsylvania College of Technology, we have been each others best men in our weddings, so we have a pretty extensive history together. I started here in 2009 after being in the restoration world for about a year and a half, soon after we were looking for a mechanic so I got Jeff the job. We worked for a gentleman who didn’t really know cars but knew business. So Jeff and I worked as managers under our boss at the time Alan Fox who was in his late 70s. So the shop had a pretty neat dynamic, two young guys running the shop and an older business man running the business end of things. We grew through the recession and started to get a name for ourselves in the community. We also learned a ton about running a business. “There’s a million techs out there but it takes a business mans mentality to run a business” is a quote he gave us that really stuck with us. Fast forward a few years and Alan had to retire, things changed hands a bit after he sold the company and didn’t work out (no need to go into details). At the time, my father was approaching retirement. He never had a crazy interest in cars like Jeff and I have but he saw that we were making careers for ourselves in this industry and he loved the passion that we had for our work. We got together as a trio and came up with Blue Sky Performance and Restoration. Without my fathers trust in us and his professional corporate background, we wouldn’t have what we have today.
2. What kind of work can customers expect when coming to you guys?
We are “hot rodders” at heart. While we do a few OEM style restorations, we do specialize in Pro touring style upgrades. We like to take cars and make them faster, more comfortable, stop faster, etc. We love to work with customers throughout the entire build of their car. We want the customer experience to exceed the quality of the work, not saying that we skimp on quality but the customer experience to us is most important of all. We want the customer to leave here and feel 100% happy with the work and the experience they had with Blue Sky.
3. Have you noticed any newer trends in the performance or style part of your work lately?
We are always trying to out do ourselves in each job. Although a customers budget is a huge factor in the end product, we are always looking for ways to improve our product and improve ourselves so that our customers will get as big of a bang for their buck.
4. What have been some of your favorite projects to work on?
We have built and worked on countless cool cars. The car that really gave us “artistic freedom” is a car we are finishing up this summer. There were very few boxes that were checked off as we built the car. It is going to be in the HRIA outside booth at the 2019 SEMA show so we are extremely excited for that kind of an opportunity and even more excited that we have a client that has been willing to let us build the car to the caliber it has been built to.
5. What did you do your first burnout in and what did you do your last burnout in?
I love this question.
The first car I personally did a burnout in was my 1984 Chevy Caprice 2 door that my neighbor sold to me for $12 bucks. It had white letter tires, black SS stripes I painted on in my parents garage and a thrush muffler. That thing did a serious one wheel peel. Jeff’s first burnout was in his dad’s 99 Volkswagen Beetle that his dad had up until recently. We both soon bought Fox body mustangs after we got our licenses and many burnouts were done in those cars. We still have a huge interest in Fox body mustangs as they are what got us into the industry.
We’d like to thank Jesse for taking the time to chat with us!