4x Focus... on Chris Marshall and MarsFab Offroad!

By NC4x4 on May 15, 2012 at 12:53 PM
  1. NC4x4

    NC4x4 Well-Known Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_DSC_0366_198x300.jpg Chris Marshall started his fabrication career helping his dad build a brush guard for his '92 S-10 Blazer. At the age of 14 or 15, his dad was buying up cheap tools to fix and resell, and it snowballed from the brush guard to a roof rack to projects on his own 1991 Explorer.

    Chris says, "I started working on projects for friends and trying to learn everything I could. Over the next ten or so years I worked as a landscaper, a structural steel welder and a parts runner for an auto parts company all while doing fab projects in my dad's garage on the weekends. I wanted to end up with my own "official" fab shop. Well the landscaping business I was working for was drying up fast and I needed to come up with another job asap. My wife and I were settled into our house, she had a good job, it seemed like a great time to start a business. So almost 3 years ago to the day I opened up shop and started doing what I love for a living!"

    MarsFab Offroad, in Harrisburg, NC, is a shop that specializes in off-road fabrication.

    Chris says he's worked on everything from lawn chairs to bulldozers. He admits it is hard work. His advice to someone interested in getting into the business?

    "Don't start a 4wd shop because you want to be the owner of a big company and make millions... Do it because you have a passion for the sport. I've learned that in this industry we have some of the most loyal customers. Do you and them a favor and take pride in what you put out on the trails."

    Chris takes great pride in his work, and with good reason.

    "There is no better feeling than posting pictures online of something I built and everyone saying how cool it is or how awesome it turned out. That makes it all worth it!"

    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_ImageUploadedByTapatalk1318973830.342020.jpg

    Current projects in the MarsFab shop include his own S10 project ('98 on tons with coilovers, small block, tube chassis, 39s), his 'ever-evolving' Toyota truggy ('90, 5.29s, 4.7s, 38s, links), the #66 ECORS YJ of Chris Brower, aka Snappy, a CJ3A, the #713 ECORS Cherokee and a chair prototype for a large furniture company.

    What has been your favorite project?

    "I'd have to say my favorite project would be the #713 ECORS Cherokee. Mike Hitchcock (amajeepman) came to me a few months ago and asked me to build a roll cage for his Cherokee to race in A class. After bending maybe 2 tubes I realized that if I was going to put my name on this thing I better give it everything I can. So for the next 3 months I tried to make it as competitive as I could. Building that Jeep has been great for business and I got to really stretch my legs on it. It included tube work, sheet metal work, aluminum work, suspension and many other things that I don't regularly get to work on. Plus I was pretty much given creative freedom to do whatever I wanted on it."

    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_DSC_8851.jpg

    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_DSC_0281.jpg

    That's not your only ECORS endeavor, though, is it?

    "Snappy contacted me a while back about finishing up his B Class Jeep for him to have it ready for the race in Auburn, AL. Snappy had some great builders work on his Jeep before I ever touched it. I just hope that I can do those guys justice by finishing it the best that I can. My work on it includes front and rear fenders, sheet metal work, mounting all the lighting, finishing the cage, a rear tire carrier, mounting seats and the fuel cell, and many, many other small things to get it ready to race. After Snappy's Jeep is done I would love to have my name on a C class rig also. Keep your eyes out for another build soon!"

    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_uploadfromtaptalk1337036200161.jpg

    aimg.nc4x4.net_wp_2012_05_uploadfromtaptalk1336766065796.jpg
    (The Snap-on guy needs some tool Bling.)

    Chris is definitely one to watch... he truly does amazing work. We wish him (and Mike in the #713 MarsFab Cherokee) good luck at the GAP this Saturday!
     
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Comments

    1. trailhugger
      trailhugger
      Chris was kind enough to answer some questions (isn't he always?) and show off his ECORS builds as well as his awesome welding skillz. ;)
      Kamel, MarsFab and cgm147 like this.
    2. rockcity
      rockcity
      Nice!
      MarsFab likes this.
    3. amajeepman
      amajeepman
      I cant say enough about Chris's fab work and attention to detail. He has worked on all of my rigs and I could not be happier. He built my tj not long after he opened up shop. The work he did then was great and its done nothing but get better since then. If you ever need anything done check marsfab out. You wont be dissapointed.
      Kamel, MarsFab and trailhugger like this.
    4. nctom
      nctom
      His workmanship, creativity and business ethics have earned my business. I watched his work from a distance for a couple years to see if he was going to be another "flash in the pan" fab shop. Chris is the real deal and a solid human. My ECORS Class B Scout is going to be built by Mar's Fab as soon as Snappy's is finished. After almost 30 years involvement in motorsports, I can spot the genuine article. Chris is it.

      We are going to need to get Chris a bigger welding helmet after he reads this. His big ol' head is going to swell up!:massey:
      Kamel, MarsFab and trailhugger like this.
    5. MarsFab
      MarsFab
      Thanks everybody, I really appreciate it!
      Kamel likes this.
    6. Paul
      Paul
      My turn.
      Awesome fabricater,welder and great guy to do business with!
      Marsfab is the real deal folks. Trust me.
      Later, Paul...
    7. Your Hot Dog Guy!
      Your Hot Dog Guy!
      Great choice for a 4x focus, I have had the pleasure to help him out on two of his events at his shop. His vision and execution in his fab work borderlines between art and function. I was lucky to meet his wife and parents and it is obvious he came from a great family. Cris Marshall is "top shelf" in my opinion! ........Did I word that like you wanted Cris?:eek:
      trailhugger likes this.
    8. MarsFab
      MarsFab
      Ha Ha Ha yea I'd say so. Thanks Terry.
      trailhugger likes this.
    9. PinkyYJ
      PinkyYJ
      Just to say, proud of you Chris!! You did this all by yourself (well, with wife), keep up the great work!!!
      You should be proud...Congrats and a awesome article too!!!
    10. 95yjjeep
      95yjjeep
      Awesome article. Chris' fab work is spectacular. He's definitely a stand up guy and a cool guy to hang out with too. He's given me some great advice on my current project and he's always been helpful, even if it didn't mean money in his pocket. That goes a long way and he's definitely earned my business in the future. If you don't give Chris a shot on your next project, you're cutting yourself short!

      Keep up the great work Chris. I can't wait to see what you build next. We'll all be watching.
    11. 1983Bronco
      1983Bronco
      I heard he was gay......
      :beer:





      Had a chance to hang out with Chris some this weekend, cool guy and super clean builds, asset to the nc4x4 community
    12. nctom
      nctom
      I just shared a motel room with him for 3 days down in Auburn Al...
      Gay? No.
      Gassy? Yes.
      :D
    13. amajeepman
      amajeepman
      Big thanks again Chris. You built me a rig that has lasted in ecors. Race 2 at the gap was brutal. Out of 21 rigs starting the only 6 finished in time. We were #4. Maybe next time well put it on the podium for you. With that said we finished. In ecors thats an accomplishment all in its own. Couldnt have done it without you.
    14. nctom
      nctom
      The suspension looked like it was working very well and the driver wasnt half bad either. Loved the Pizza Hut delivery sign on the roof!
    15. trailhugger
      trailhugger
      :lol: I asked Mike, at the Flats, if he was going to deliver pizza after the race.
      nctom likes this.
    16. amajeepman
      amajeepman
      Yeah after everyone saying it looked like a pizza delivery sign i figured i would put the stickers on it. Well that and i bought a sticker cutter and needed some practice.
    17. nctom
      nctom
      i want a NAPA hat!
    18. MarsFab
      MarsFab
      Napa hat....... hmmmm sounds like some fun sheet metal practice;)
    19. nctom
      nctom
      Might just rock a IH tractor umbrella from tractor supply!:) Have a sexy little pit gurl hold it like they do in Formula One racing. I am sure Donel would be ok with that.o_O
    20. nctom
      nctom
      Ya'll get anything done on Snapper's stuff today?
    21. MarsFab
      MarsFab
      Snappy's is done as of Friday afternoon. Well my work is done Monday it'll be off to paint/vinyl, Olivers, and to slappys shop to get the rest of the wiring and plumbing done. It's getting close!
    22. nctom
      nctom
      Nice! He should make the GA race?
    23. shawn
      shawn
      Don't get your hopes up.


      :flipoff2:
    24. snappy
      snappy
      Oh it will be in GA... fuc$ers :huggy:

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