Everyone at home had a car except Obakeng Thetele. He then decided to build his own. The 17-year-old Bloemfontein born and bred teen has not only built his recent car in just a month but has already completed two full functioning cars.
It all started from a young age when the Brebner High School learner dissembled his toy cars to “fix” them again. “My mother used to buy me toy cars, which I would take apart even though they were brand new, just to put back together again,” said Thetele. In an interview with Bloemfontein Courant, he said that his mechanic father has had a huge influence on his love for building cars.
He has always been excited to help his father fix cars in his spare time. This not only taught him how to work on cars but also created an income for him as he gets paid by his father and is able to use some of his hard earned cash for fuel for his cars.
Thetele has built his two vehicles from scratch from recycled materials he could find – from an old car radio to corrugated iron sheets. “I also do the welding and the wiring. I found a few iron sheets I recycled and am currently repainting them.”
Thetele started building his second car the beginning of the national lockdown. It took him just about a month to complete. His new ride has everything – from a radio to lights. The aspiring automotive technician has used his savings to buy an old quad bike, which he has turned into a car. His new car, which is yet to be named, has space for two people.
Thetele has passed on his talent and skill to his friends whom he teaches to build cars. He also enjoys building in fixing radios, speakers and headsets. For more follow his Facebook page Homebuild projects.
PIERCE VAN HEERDEN