Automotive Training Center (ATC) is committed to inspiring a future generation of automotive collision technicians, and it all begins at our Warminster and Exton campuses. Through the Collision Reconditioning Technology program, students will acquire sufficient technical knowledge and experience in aspects of diagnosing and repairing collision damage.
What’s required to receive your diploma? We’re glad you asked. Let’s take a closer look at the coursework you’ll encounter while enrolled at ATC.
Welding & Non-Structural Damage Repair
Welding and non-structural damage repair is an important part of the Collision program at ATC. Students will gain hands-on experience with three types of welders. Working with stick welders will introduce you to the world of collision repair. They’re ideal for working with thick pieces of metal. As you gain experience, you’ll also start using MIG and TIG welders.
You’ll learn the principles of cutting, brazing, squeeze type resistance spot welding, plastic repair, and adhesives. Hands-on practice takes you through various welding projects, heating and annealing metals and shaping mild and HSS steel and aluminum.
Practical shop work includes proper use of:
- Hand tools
- Disc grinders
It’s important for collision repair technicians to have experience with wheel welding. In our Collision Reconditioning Technology courses, you’ll get to work with a TIG welder to seal cracks in steel and aluminum wheels that are the result of hitting potholes or getting into a collision.
Surface preparation is an important first step in almost all collision repairs, which makes it a key part of our Collision Reconditioning Technology courses. You will learn the theory behind surface preparation in the classroom and then get to work on it yourself when you get into the shop.
These courses cover all aspects of priming, the various primers available, and their specific uses as you prep the surface for repairs. Inspection and diagnosis of various surface conditions and breakdowns, including cleaning of surface imperfections, is included in this course.
Learn about the care and maintenance of shop equipment, along with:
- Power and hand sanding
- Wet and dry sanding
- Feather edging
Manufacturers generally recommend removing the top coat of paint before working on collision repair. This can be taken care of with a special solvent or a grinder. You’ll learn how both techniques work, so you can make repairs that comply with industry standards.
Structural Damage Repair
This course will tackle the important topics of uni-body and frame repair, along with major collision repair. When a vehicle has been in a serious accident, extensive structural damage repair may be required. In this course, you’ll learn to use the measurement gauges and dimension charts to correct alignment of uni-bodies and frames.
There are three major types of frame damage that will be covered in this course. You will learn more about what effects the damage has on the vehicle, so you can easily identify each. In the shop, you will work on repairing each type of damage. The three types of frame damage include:
- Sagging or Twisted Frame
- Sway Damage
- Mashed Frame
Students will become familiar with some of the latest equipment and technology being used in the industry, including the Chief S-21 frame straightening machine. It utilizes hydraulic pressure and torque to straighten the bent portions of the vehicle’s frame.
When a frame cannot be bent back to the manufacturer’s specifications, the damaged piece can also be cut out and replaced. That gives students more opportunities to further improve upon their welding skills.
Painting and Refinishing
Painting is a pivotal last step in collision repair. After you complete the Collision Reconditioning courses, you’ll have the knowledge needed to make vehicles look like they were never in a collision at all.
Students will pick up the practical techniques in painting and refinishing with a focus on top-coat finishes, final buffing, and polishing for a high-gloss finish. Extensive shop experience and practice revolves around:
- Color matching
- Panel refinishing
- Spot repair
Paint quality preservation and detailing techniques are thoroughly covered, along with custom color blending and working with different finish types. Finish types include clear coats, mica, and metallic finishes.
If you’re looking for a career that embraces both your technical side and your artistic talents, you may want to think about following the path of a custom painter. Whether a car owner is looking to embrace a new color or is just in need of a couple custom designs, you’ll have the know-how needed to get the job done.
Cost Estimating & Damage Repair
This course details the procedures of preparing a cost estimate for a driver after a collision has occurred. Flat rate manuals and labor/parts guides are used to provide an estimate for repair costs of all metal, suspension, steering, and other important mechanical parts.
Practical exercises will test students in calculating labor costs for refinishing, minor repair, and major salvage, determining where areas may overlap. Use computer software and the CCC-One system to determine a cost estimate, while getting additional shop work in structural and non-structural analysis and damage.
This course will also teach students about the inner workings of mechanical configurations and electrical engineering. That will make it easier to identify what parts of the vehicle need to be replaced aside from just the body damage.
This course will give you the knowledge needed to pursue a career as an insurance collision appraiser, who works as the liaison between insurance companies, collision reconditioning technicians, and drivers. The combination of in-class work and hands-on experience will help students that choose this path create streamlined final reports that give all parties involved more peace of mind.
Apply to the Collision Reconditioning Technology Program
It only takes a few minutes to fill out an application for Automotive Training Center’s Collision Reconditioning Technology Program. Once you’ve completed our application, we’ll be in touch after reviewing your information, so we can set up a time for you to take a campus tour.
We look forward to teaching the future collision repair experts of the Delaware Valley and beyond!