PORTER - Lance Moeller has two rules: be diverse and treat the customer right.
That's how he's done business at Moeller Body & Paint for 13 years, since he took over from his parents, Jim and Darlene Moeller, who ran it as Moeller's Paint & Body.
Along with employee Ryan DeVos, Moeller does all the work, which includes a wide variety, some a bit out of the ordinary.
Photo by Jodelle Greiner
Lance Moeller, left, along with his employee, Ryan DeVos, stands next to a vintage restoration project. Moeller said he likes to do at least one vintage restoration project a year.
"We're so diverse," said Moeller, who studied body shop in Willmar. "We do semis, restoration, collision work, glass replacement. Anything we can fit into a 42-foot booth, we've done."
They've painted and repaired tractors for "DMN and Ziegler and local farmers," Moeller said. "We got into day cabbing; take the sleeper off a semi and make it into a day cab."
Restoring vintage vehicles is big now, and Moeller likes doing at least one a year, "but this year, we'll try to do two," he said, gesturing to the two partially dismantled vehicles in his shop.
They've done house doors, toy tractors, and motorcycles, but the most unusual thing is probably the 1947 manure spreader.
"Guy's got it setting in his front yard," Moeller said. "We fixed some dents. Painted it John Deere green and the tines yellow."
Color is a great way to individualize a job and customers can have just about any color they want.
"Anything that PPG provides, we can get," Moeller said of their paint supplier, Pittsburgh Paint and Glass, which has a rainbow of colors and finishes.
He believes in giving a hand to high school kids with a project or an internship because when he was in college, folks did that for him.
"It feels like you're helping out the kids and the community," he said. "If they have an interest in it, I'm willing to help out."
It's unusual projects that keep it interesting for Moeller.
"If it's a challenge, it's good for us," he said. "Find out how to do it and make the customer happy."
Being able to do that is important to Moeller.
"We've always been family owned," he said. "We treat people like they should be treated and care about the customer first. The customer is our boss. If the customer isn't happy, we won't have work coming back again."