So, with social media the way it is, this kind of relevant and up-to-date information gets lost in the cesspool of Facebook groups.
This information is up-to-date: Summer 2019 and affects the greater 805 area code.
I didn't start this thread to discover a good mechanic, but to meet other people with similar interests. With that said, Larry Butler is a very good mechanic. His hobby is 510 racing, and he owns multiple Datsuns. He also has background with Z cars, and has shown this to be the case. My car, a hybrid, is a 240Z (LS1 + T56) with a Z31 rear-end. Most mechanics look at it and don't know where to start. He's had my car on two separate occasions and completed the following within a very reasonable time-frame. I'm talking...hours.
Speed-o was not working | Fixed
Fuel gauge was not working | re-wired Fixed (w/o taking the dash out)
Differential hemorrhaged oil | Fixed
CV Axle issues | Fixed
Updated coilovers with new springs (needed stiffer spring rate) | Done
EFI wiring issues | Scheduled to be fixed
He has not turned down a job yet, and my whole car is basically a Frankenstein. He could probably work around an OEM build with his eyes closed.
Larry works at Ferrell's Auto Repair in Atascadero, CA. To schedule time with Larry, you must work through the front-desk. Call them ((805) 466-1004) with the Year, Make, Model of the Datsun, and include any hybrid information. They will assign your car to Larry by default, because it's just known that he is the man for these cars. Larry will need to look at your car to understand your needs and requests. So, your first session will be an assessment + specific job you've requested. Ferrell's is not a speed or custom shop. When it comes to Datsuns, the front-desk will have almost no information to give you, other than a quote and general time-frame for job completion. All of the focused Datsun talent is Larry. During drop-off and pick-up, Larry has been nice enough to spend up to 15 minutes discussing what he did and what he saw. This is a bonus, because mechanics work and charge by the hour. Every minute he spends talking to you about your car is time taken away from some other customer, so you have to realize that Ferrell's is going out of its way to work for you. Again, they are not a Datsun garage like the popular shops we know in LA and Bay Area. They are a standard shop that happens to employ a ******* Datsun Jedi Master.
As for meeting other owners in the area...super duper bonus is that Larry probably knows most of them. Or he knows the ones worth knowing, ha.
So this is my assessment of Larry.