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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Mad Build Area > Tribute Automotive Builds

Tribute Automotive Builds Discuss your Tribute kit build

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  #1  
Old 27th November 2017, 15:55
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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Default eBay - Any way of properly judging the quality of spare parts?

I am looking at the front control arm and there are wildly varying prices. The first few examples I found:

63 for the control arms
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/BMW-E36-FR...4AAOxy4YdTXYfx

72 for the control arms and ARB link
http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/BMW-Z3-1-9...KWVt7lUeyYRDog

73 for the control arms and ARB link and tie rods
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Repair-ki...YAAOSwax5Y1o-x

108 for the control arms and ARB link and tie rods
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/FRONT-SUS...4AAOSwhkRWgi8P

I appreciate these are not genuine BMW units but do I just buy the cheapest I can find?
Are there any trusted brands in the spares market I should look for?

I don't want to spend somewhere between 70-140 just to find the parts are made from cheese and don't fit. At the same time I don't want to spend just to buy from someone with a nicer website.

Help!
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  #2  
Old 27th November 2017, 16:11
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Jaguartvr Jaguartvr is offline
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It can be very hard to tell.
I always check the feedback and on these sort of items that the seller has sold a lot of them.
In this price bracket I wouldn't have thought there was a lot of difference in the quality.
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  #3  
Old 27th November 2017, 16:20
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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They were just the easiest examples to find quickly. There are ones for sale at over 500 for EACH control arm : http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/HARDRACE-F...IAAOSwKtlZlSle

I am guessing the price I need to pay is somewhere between 70 and 1,000...

I will check the feedback and the buyer carefully. Thanks
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  #4  
Old 27th November 2017, 16:27
Lucky@LeMans Lucky@LeMans is offline
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I replaced the whole of my front suspension arms / drop links etc on my Audi A6 two years ago. I bought a complete kit of parts off ebay, about 10 major components, for about 110 from Germany. I've done about 20k miles and I can detect a little movement in the of the joints already.
The cheap parts work but will probably become worn out sooner rather than later !
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  #5  
Old 27th November 2017, 16:32
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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That is what I am worried about. Bad materials and/or bad manufacturing tolerances

I did something similar with some bike bits that were an 'amazing bargain' but had holes drilled in slightly the wrong place, weren't the right thickness etc.
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  #6  
Old 27th November 2017, 17:06
Mitchelkitman Mitchelkitman is offline
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Have you tried any local motor factors? When we had a Fiat (from new) we had a 'rattle' over bumpy roads, and it sounded like something under the dash (certainly nothing major). I said to Mrs M that if we told the main stealer they would probably have the dash out and create 3 more rattles! so we lived with this minor irritation. When it came to its first MOT it turned out the ARB links had a little movement, so I sourced a pair off Ebay and fitted them in 40 minutes (nuts a little rusty). 'Our' little rattle disappeared! So maybe OE parts not so good? Scroll forward 11 month to next MOT and the rubber boots on the new ARB links had opened up like petals! So I went to local factor and got ones made by 'First Line' which the guy said had a 12 month warranty so may last 1 month longer New ones fitted in 30 minutes (copperslip from year before )
Give credit where it's due, I sent a photo of the 'petal' ones to the Ebay vendor, who offered to send more, but I told him I had to get others on the day to get MOT, so could he send 50% refund - which he did. I think Ebay ones were 14, factor ones 22, so roughly 50% more, but they were good 3 years later when we sold the car.

ETA when I did some searching First Line say they are uk based and great (well no company would say they were bad), promoted like a 'new age' QH supplier. I guess the parts may come from wherever, but if their quality control is good? Factor man said they were good (but again he wouldn't say otherwise) - At least I could return them easily if I had a problem.

Last edited by Mitchelkitman; 27th November 2017 at 17:10.. Reason: bits left out
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Old 27th November 2017, 17:16
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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I did check the local GSF but they wanted 90 per control arm. I guess I could try some others, time permitting. Spend most my time at a computer so ebay and online suppliers are easiest
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Old 27th November 2017, 17:25
Mitchelkitman Mitchelkitman is offline
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That's about on a par price wise then to what I found (ie +50%) - just depends if they are same make as online ( so maybe worth chancing online if same make? to get lower price) or what premium can be attached to possibly being able to return/exchange easier in the event of a problem.
I agree the quality can be hit/miss, but suspect this is similar with OE parts.
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Old 27th November 2017, 17:30
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I have just bought, and had fitted, front control arms together with the rear lollipops. I bought Meyle HD components as they were thought highly of over on the Zorg forum. I will check what I paid but think they were about 110-120.

There were no mechanics moaning about the quality where I had them fitted so am happy.

I also had coil overs fitted in readiness for my build. I went for ‘expensive ‘ BC Racing units and happy with them too (early days)

Dave
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  #10  
Old 27th November 2017, 17:58
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Jaguartvr Jaguartvr is offline
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I don't use Europarts or GSF anymore, they seem to have got a lot more expensive and the quality doesn't warrant it.
I have bought a lot of parts from Aceparts on Ebay and have been very happy, very good prices and normally next day delivery. I haven't had any of the parts fail yet.
Normally track rod ends and wishbone etc.

I normally get my brake pads from them, for my daughters MX5 they around 10 including delivery. This time I got caught out as I had to have them for a booked MOT so had to go to Europarts.
The cheapest wasn't available and the next step up was 46!
Had a rant in the shop and they brought the price down to 25, still 2.5x what I normally pay.
I bought 4 discs, front & rear pads and handbrake pads and fitting kit on Ebay for the Z3 and the whole lot came to about 85. Have been very happy with them and no signs of brake judder.
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  #11  
Old 27th November 2017, 18:25
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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Meyle HD - They have been mentioned on a few places I have looked too. This is the good feedback I was hoping for.

Aceparts on Ebay I will check them out.

Anyone with good or bad experiences please post on this thread so we can share the knowledge
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  #12  
Old 27th November 2017, 18:29
DaveP DaveP is offline
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As far as control arms go I went with these at 109. They looked excellent but that said I probably wouldn't know what I am looking at.


http://https://rover.ebay.com/rover/...2F160636987142

I also went for their ARB link arms too but didn't need them as the coilovers had an alternative connection to the front strut as opposed to directly on the lower control arm. I need to look them out as they were 20 and someone else can make use of them.

As far as brakes were concerned my donor had need to replace most of the discs and pads so I splashed out on Brembo discs and pads front and rear. I was tempted by the eBay drilled and grooved but put off by the possibility of them making noise on braking. I bought the whole lot from that other 'trustworthy' source CarParts4Less. I read that they are Internet only version of ECP but cheaper. All boxes were sealed when delivered and postage was n xt day. Even better and the car stops so much better than before! I went Bosch rear shoes as they were also a quality part recommended to me.

Nothing I have bought is cheap as I'm of the view that I am going to keep my kit for a few years and so I deserve what is better for my use. All the components should last too.

I'll post pics of the BC Racing coilovers in my (must get on with one) build thread. My Kobra special is ready for picking up after all

Dave
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  #13  
Old 27th November 2017, 18:44
WorldClassAccident WorldClassAccident is offline
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I just tried to find anything on https://www.aceparts.co.uk/ but cannot see parts or prices. Not sure if it is their website or me being rubbish.

DaveP - PM me about the links please. Price delivered to Southampton with Club discount obviously :-)
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Old 27th November 2017, 19:16
DaveP DaveP is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WorldClassAccident View Post
I just tried to find anything on https://www.aceparts.co.uk/ but cannot see parts or prices. Not sure if it is their website or me being rubbish.

DaveP - PM me about the links please. Price delivered to Southampton with Club discount obviously :-)
I shall make sure the bloody mechanic has not lost or sold them on. Will do a 'club deal' when I track them down

Dave
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  #15  
Old 27th November 2017, 21:28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WorldClassAccident View Post
I just tried to find anything on https://www.aceparts.co.uk/ but cannot see parts or prices. Not sure if it is their website or me being rubbish.

DaveP - PM me about the links please. Price delivered to Southampton with Club discount obviously :-)
Google aceparts ebay uk and you will get their ebay shop
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  #16  
Old 27th November 2017, 21:45
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GSF do appear to have hiked up there prices in recent years, however if you register your email address with them they send discount vouchers from time to time. Best so far was 60% off which makes for a realistic deal.
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  #17  
Old 28th November 2017, 17:14
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Would not touch europarts with a barge pole, had three supposedly Bosch alternators all failed crap fakes made in china, came in correct box all replaced under guarantee had last ones diodes rewired on voltage regulator, then 12 months later the servo failed killing the brakes this is on my daily diesel shogun, now have proper one fitted, no probs. the fakes were not cheap either. Also never buy break pads on ebay after bad experience years ago (ferodo) ones fell apart, have bought disks with no probs but apparently the grade of steel is not the same and they will wear and rust quicker.
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