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When I retired last January I made up a little joke business card for GUNNER INDUSTRIES and used it to announce my writing, public relations and collectibles business. In the 30 years I worked at Old Cars Weekly everyone accused me of being "industrious." So I used the word "Indutries" on my card and showed a picture of an old auto plant. (My friends asked if it was my office in the corner of the second floor!)

Yesterday I traveled to Brillion, Wisconsin and met a couple of guys who are far more industrious than I'll ever be. Jewel Meetz does restoration work and is also making reproduction parts for T-Birds and '57-'59 Fords. His Jewel's Body Shop (Email: has become well-known for its specialty work fixing T-Birds. He even builds a complete, concours-quality convertible top frame for the two-seat T-Birds.

Custom Plating Services ( is the name of the chrome plating business that Terry Meetz runs next door to his dad's shop. Terry can fix a pot metal part or chrome plate an old-fashioned wood-burning warming stove.

Father and son both love working 12 hour days and long weeks. "In the old days we had to put in a lot of hours because the kids needed shoes," Jewel recalled. "We did restorations, crash work and even painted refrigerators - anything to pay the bills. Now the bills are pretty much all paid, but we never forgot that working hard is the key to success."

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