Serial entrepreneur Chris Overacker on Episode 90


Serial entrepreneur Chris Overacker on Episode 90.  Founder of Stage West Offroad Outfitters, Mountain Off-Road Enterprises, and CODE 4×4 talks engineering, building, marketing, Jeeps, and full-size.

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4:22 – “Well, you must not have been trying very hard!”

8:12 – I found the light!

13:11 – How come you didn’t tell me that slider was in there backwards??

21:18 – Lee Sharp was a fantastic mentor

26:50 – I don’t want to be competitors with you

32:15 – “Why don’t you export product and import money?”

55:44 – we went to an off-road racing school with Rod Hall and Steve Kelly

1:00:18 – we’re going up that trail right there – where? – right there, there’s a trail

We want to thank our sponsors Maxxis Tires and 4Low Magazine.



On today’s episode of Conversations with Big Rich. We have Chris Overacker. Chris is a guy that’s been in the four wheel drive industry for quite a while. We’ll get into all of that, but he has started a bunch of different companies in the offroad world, and we’re going to talk to Chris about all that. So, Chris, thank you so much for coming on board and being part of Conversations with Big Rich.

[00:01:46.350] – Chris Overacker

Well, thank you. I appreciate the opportunity. And it’s going to be fun to share.

[00:01:50.080] – Big Rich Klein

Yeah, I think so. Your name first came up with Jack Bettio, one of the other interviews that I did East Coast competitor, and he bought a white vehicle from you. I think it was a CJ seven or something.

[00:02:04.250] – Chris Overacker

Yes, it was. Okay.

[00:02:05.570] – Big Rich Klein

Well, before we dive all into that, let’s start at the beginning. And where were you born and raised?

[00:02:13.450] – Chris Overacker

Well, I was born in San Jose, California, in 59.

[00:02:17.740] – Big Rich Klein


[00:02:18.290] – Chris Overacker

And didn’t spend a lot of time. There was. My folks moved to Colorado in, I think, 64. So I’m just a little tot then, but I would like to consider Colorado kind of my home stomping ground, even though I’ve lived in New Mexico for a bit. But anyway, I moved to Colorado Springs in 64 and then just learned to love the Rockies and skiing and backpacking and everything Colorado had to offer.

[00:02:47.770] – Big Rich Klein

So Colorado Springs, the home of the Air Force Academy?

[00:02:52.060] – Chris Overacker

Yes. Absolutely.

[00:02:53.480] – Big Rich Klein

Was your parents moved there just to get out of California, or was it work related?

[00:02:58.760] – Chris Overacker

Well, my dad worked for Hewlett Packard, and they had a plant in Colorado Springs, and he transferred there as an electrical engineer. And he jumped at the opportunity to get out of California and move to a state that was known for its outdoor activities. So he really encouraged the whole family to go along with that. And I guess my brother at the time was four and a half years older than us. So he was all for it. And I was obviously for it. So it’s like, yeah, let’s go to Colorado.

[00:03:31.040] – Big Rich Klein

Awesome. And you said you were born in San Jose. I was born in the North Bay, in the San Bruno, Burlingame areas where I was born. But I was raised in San Bruno, California, but I spent through my high school years there.

[00:03:45.470] – Chris Overacker

I see. Well, I don’t remember it much, obviously, but I sure admire that state and everything they’ve done for our industry.

[00:03:52.540] – Big Rich Klein

Yes. True. Too bad. Now we won’t get into political anyway. Almost everybody knows how I feel about that. I’m no longer a guest of their situation in California, so I’m glad to have escaped.

[00:04:14.290] – Chris Overacker


[00:04:15.170] – Big Rich Klein

Anyway, we find yourself in Colorado Springs at the age of about five years old.

[00:04:22.180] – Chris Overacker

Yeah. I moved there at about five. And like I said, my dad had me on snow skis at about that age. And as a matter of fact, he volunteered on the ski patrol at a couple of different ski areas, so we would head out to go skiing almost every weekend. And matter of fact, I can remember one time we were heading back and I was all proud of myself. I said, dad, I didn’t fall down once today. He kind of looked at the rear view mirror at me and looked at me and said, Well, you must not be trying very hard.

[00:04:54.970] – Chris Overacker

So kind of burst my bubble, but it was a good lesson, and it kind of stayed with me.

[00:05:01.210] – Big Rich Klein

I always had that same attitude. You can’t have great success without some failures, right? READ MORE


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