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Washington’s Bremerton Collision Repair joins 1Collision

Ty Sunkel and his wife opened the facility four years ago, where their daughter works in the front office and their son is a technician

Bremerton, Wash.—1Collision has announced the addition of Bremerton Collision Repair in Bremerton, Wash. Ty Sunkel and his wife, Sarah, opened the facility about four years ago. Their daughter, Taylor, works in the front office and their son, Cole, is a technician.

“We’re a family-owned shop and care about customers,” said Ty Sunkel. “We treat people like we want to be treated.”

They learned about 1Collision after attending the 2022 SEMA Show in Las Vegas, in November. “During our initial conversation with Ty Sunkel at 1Collision’s booth at SEMA, I could tell that he had a real passion for our industry and that he was focused on repairing vehicles properly while running a very professional business model,” said Jim Keller, 1Collision president and CEO. “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to support a shop the caliber of Bremerton Collision Center.”

“I went to SEMA this year looking for someone to partner with,” said Sunkel. “I met Jim Keller and after an hour-long conversation, I said, ‘This is my guy. This is the guy who can help us get to the next level.’”

Sunkel has worked in the collision industry for more than 30 years. In 2018, he opened Bremerton Collision. When business slowed down due to the pandemic, they found a larger building to remodel in downtown Bremerton about five miles away from where they were operating. They moved into the 5,000-square-foot location in May 2021. Since then, they have grown their business and currently have seven employees.

“The building itself was a collision repair shop for 70 years,” said Sunkel. “We were able to secure the lease on it and bring it back to life. Now we’re seeing the fruits of our labor.”

Part of the remodel included purchasing two new frame benches, a measuring system, a spot welder and a MIG welder. “We’re fully equipped,” he said, adding that the team is working on several OEM certifications. “Between 30 and 40 percent of our business comes from dealership referrals and auto repair shops.”

The shop is also going through the process of becoming I-CAR Gold Class. “I pretty much eat, breathe and sleep the business right now.”

Recently, Sunkel and his wife said they realized they needed to be part of something bigger to be successful in the future. “From my time working with an MSO, I knew I needed to talk to other shop owners and management for feedback,” he said. “The only way we can move forward in this ever-changing collision industry is if we get to be part of something bigger than ourselves.”

The shop is currently part of several direct repair programs (DRPs). “We are looking to 1Collision to help us work more efficiently and streamline our processes,” he said. With 1Collision’s assistance, they also hope to increase insurance and vendor relationships and improve the health of their business.

“You have to keep your head up and look around and see what everybody else is doing. One of the things I tell my guys all the time, especially my office people, is I’m not worried about fixing cars today, but how are we going to do a better job tomorrow and even better next month?”

The Sunkels recently acquired an office in a building adjacent to their current shop and are going to be moving the office into that location in January. Long-term goals include opening a possible second location in 2023.

“Hopefully between 1Collision and our other partners it will spearhead us into opening another location,” Sunkel said.

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