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Thread: Auto Parts Stores....

  1. #26
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    mojoparts and carbodyparts-dot-net are two pretty tempting websites, though I've never ordered from them. B&R autowrecking has good deals too and fair shipping. I use google for manufacturer part numbers to start my search when it's something hard to find. I was looking for a Nissan crossmember (1st, basically the bumper) and typed the part number in google. Of all places, Rock auto popped up. I clicked on the link, saw it listed the nissan part number. Price was so good, I figured it was a generic. I was surprised when it arrived, the rock auto sticker was slapped over a genuine nissan part number sticker! Ebay and Amazon win a lot in the search too, specially when it comes down to free shipping on something heavy.

  2. #27
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael ray View Post
    Most parts people at the parts stores are not even qualified to ask "would you like cheese with that?"
    One of the pilots I worked with told me he went into an AutoZone, parked right in front of the door in his 70‘s body style Stingray as the counter girl watched him walk in. He was getting something for it, and the counter girl had to ask what kind of car it was. How do you work in an auto parts store and not know what a Corvette is?

  3. #28
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Having managed a parts store years ago I can share a bit of insight. Typical customer walks in and says "I need a spark plug for this" ... Okay, what is "this"? Its just a mower, car, truck, etc. Alright, so hand them an old Champion plug that is obviously 4 sizes too big since after all according to the customer "they are all the same" ... Guess what; they aren't.

    Most walk in and want everything for nothing as it is "too expensive". Give them what they want and provide a cheap alternative and they are back in a month complaining that the whatever it is does not work. You wanted cheap. You get what you pay for.

    I could go on but it is pointless at this point. There are no books anymore for the most part. Everything is computerized so pretty much garbage in and garbage out. You drive up in a Corvette? So are we to ASSUME that that is the vehicle you are looking to obtain parts for? Seriously?

    Experience comes at a cost. The next time you walk into a store where price is the only concern stop and think for a moment. Do I want this to function correctly on a long term basis or do I want it cheap. There is a difference.

    Until you step into the shoes of someone else don't judge them as at some point that will come back at you two fold.

  4. #29
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    When I started out I did business with a local 10 store chain that had very sharp people in general. Soon my sister went to work for them and I found my account developed a smoking discount- I couldn't believe they sold parts to anyone so cheap(she talked to the manager). That lasted about 20 years and then I was like most anyone else. In a different place and time I split between NAPA and a regional chain. The NAPA has an old part time grumpy geezer that can find anything obscure and old if I can tolerate his rough edges, the rest of the staff save one has the attitude that they are doing their customers a favor everyday, they also specialize in off road and heavy highway with a hose machine... the downside is their prices are close to gouging. I get that experience and knowledge come with a price but this is too much... its like a convenience store, 2L soda for $3. so for the everyday parts I send my business to the regional chain. Went to O'Rielly once for gallons of bar and chain oil, I looked, couldn't find it, asked the clerk, he wanders around mumbling "I stock the shelf last week right here but can't find it", never did find it but he didn't seem to be all there either...

    "But it still comes down to if the employee with a brain is working".
    Had a '74 Dodge W200 4WD that had a gear reducer between 2 sections of speedo cable, the cable was caught in front of the gas tank and cradle and got pinched. Took out the assembly and took it to my favorite parts supplier, new guy at the counter; explained what I wanted and he stated "that didn't not come out of that truck, the book says so"... it took the manager to smooth things over.

    Guardian- Substitute Champion and Corvette for the respective names and your insight fits for almost any business that deals with the public.
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  5. #30
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    We dont have a Advanced Auto or Rock Auto out here. We do have a couple NAPA's, Autozone and Oriely bought out the KRAGEN's. I have seen the Rock Auto commercials.

    In Los Angeles, they have or used to have CHIEF Auto and they are open 24 hours.

  6. #31
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Guardian- Substitute Champion and Corvette for the respective names and your insight fits for almost any business that deals with the public.
    OMB, you are 100% correct.

  7. #32
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by buck View Post
    delco deveoloped the one wire alt for marine trade,, if u use/have a built in regulator delco and weant one wire, it the same part number as the regular one but with SE prefix to the part number, since the patent is out now just bout everybody sells the regulators, on Ebay they are around about 8.50 to 9.50 each,, just dont plug anything to the tabs, i usually just cut them off so some helpfull person doesnt try to plug some stray wire on it trying to help me out,, buck
    You said marine apps,ill give you that but still no automobile is oe with a one wire

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  8. #33
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Guardian View Post
    Having managed a parts store years ago I can share a bit of insight. Typical customer walks in and says "I need a spark plug for this" ... Okay, what is "this"? Its just a mower, car, truck, etc. Alright, so hand them an old Champion plug that is obviously 4 sizes too big since after all according to the customer "they are all the same" ... Guess what; they aren't.

    Most walk in and want everything for nothing as it is "too expensive". Give them what they want and provide a cheap alternative and they are back in a month complaining that the whatever it is does not work. You wanted cheap. You get what you pay for.

    I could go on but it is pointless at this point. There are no books anymore for the most part. Everything is computerized so pretty much garbage in and garbage out. You drive up in a Corvette? So are we to ASSUME that that is the vehicle you are looking to obtain parts for? Seriously?

    Experience comes at a cost. The next time you walk into a store where price is the only concern stop and think for a moment. Do I want this to function correctly on a long term basis or do I want it cheap. There is a difference.

    Until you step into the shoes of someone else don't judge them as at some point that will come back at you two fold.
    What he said

    Sent from my R1 HD using Tapatalk

  9. #34
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    I have a car quest that also has a repair shop. MY buddy is the repair shop manager so I go there most of the time . Otherwise Amazon is my next shopping place for parts. I have tried Rock auto a few times but Prices have not been all that good on what I have needed.

    Like most places in the USA the brick and mortar places only hire at the lowest wage possible so they only get the least qualified people. They have no intention of hiring people that are actually good at what they do unless they are willing to work for peanuts . Most people I know that have any skill at all will not. These store owners seem to be perfectly happy with high turnover and complaining about the quality of there employees being so poor. I bet they have never even considered paying a decent wage to people.

  10. #35
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Insaneride View Post
    We dont have a Advanced Auto or Rock Auto out here. We do have a couple NAPA's, Autozone and Oriely bought out the KRAGEN's. I have seen the Rock Auto commercials.

    In Los Angeles, they have or used to have CHIEF Auto and they are open 24 hours.
    Rock Auto is online only.

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  11. #36
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Guardian View Post
    Having managed a parts store years ago I can share a bit of insight. Typical customer walks in and says "I need a spark plug for this" ... Okay, what is "this"? Its just a mower, car, truck, etc. Alright, so hand them an old Champion plug that is obviously 4 sizes too big since after all according to the customer "they are all the same" ... Guess what; they aren't.

    Most walk in and want everything for nothing as it is "too expensive". Give them what they want and provide a cheap alternative and they are back in a month complaining that the whatever it is does not work. You wanted cheap. You get what you pay for.

    I could go on but it is pointless at this point. There are no books anymore for the most part. Everything is computerized so pretty much garbage in and garbage out. You drive up in a Corvette? So are we to ASSUME that that is the vehicle you are looking to obtain parts for? Seriously?

    Experience comes at a cost. The next time you walk into a store where price is the only concern stop and think for a moment. Do I want this to function correctly on a long term basis or do I want it cheap. There is a difference.

    Until you step into the shoes of someone else don't judge them as at some point that will come back at you two fold.
    I probably have the details wrong on the story. I think it may actually have been along the lines of he telling her the year and and "Corvette", and she asked what the make was.

  12. #37
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    I like rock auto when I have a couple days to wait. Unfortunately our delivery driver is a real dick and some of our stuff looks like it got tossed of a loading dock or smashed with a boulder..
    These are cat converters for a nissan xterra...$1150 for both primary and both secondary Name:  20170601_115026.jpg
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  13. #38
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael ray View Post
    I like rock auto when I have a couple days to wait. Unfortunately our delivery driver is a real dick and some of our stuff looks like it got tossed of a loading dock or smashed with a boulder..
    These are cat converters for a nissan xterra...$1150 for both primary and both secondary Name:  20170601_115026.jpg
Views: 347
Size:  72.9 KBName:  20170601_115016.jpg
Views: 348
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    That is crazy. I would sure think that those parts went across a scale or two before getting to you. If the delivery driver does not want to pick up heavy stuff maybe he should find something more suiting to his physical abilities.


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  14. #39
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by dusterdude View Post
    You said marine apps,ill give you that but still no automobile is oe with a one wire

    Sent from my R1 HD using Tapatalk
    you are so right,, its not an auto part but a hotrod adaptation of a very popular part, buck, now i understand alternators for ford and chrysler have been adapted because of the popularity of the delcos, buck

  15. #40
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by buck View Post
    you are so right,, its not an auto part but a hotrod adaptation of a very popular part, buck, now i understand alternators for ford and chrysler have been adapted because of the popularity of the delcos, buck
    Havent heard of that buck,but it is interesting.

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  16. #41
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by thegary View Post
    Like most places in the USA the brick and mortar places only hire at the lowest wage possible so they only get the least qualified people. They have no intention of hiring people that are actually good at what they do unless they are willing to work for peanuts . Most people I know that have any skill at all will not. These store owners seem to be perfectly happy with high turnover and complaining about the quality of there employees being so poor. I bet they have never even considered paying a decent wage to people.
    The manager of the parts place I go to mentioned he was contacted by a recruiter for Tractor Supply that was opening a new store in town- compensation was $500/week with minimal benefits for the store manger position. Manager and assistant were to be the only full-time employees at the branch. I get the concept about paying the drones peanuts but you have to have someone at each location that keep things up and sort out issues on the spot, not have corporate blow in once month to "clean things up". I can't imagine putting the responsibility of a million dollar facility on someone with a $600.week (including benefits) salary.

    On the flip side, in New England we have a 120 store grocery chain that don't remodel their stores, don't carry obscure products, don't have fancy advertising but they pay all of their people much higher than the industry average; they are fiercely loyal to management, many long term employees and their service is top notch- if they see someone struggling a clerk will even pick a customer's shopping and put it in the car for them!... The employees like coming to work and it shows.
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  17. #42
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Years ago I worked as the Commercial Parts Manager (basically an assistant store manager that was also in charge of commercial sales) at one of the big chain auto parts stores. My experience very closely matches Guardian's. The crap we had to deal with on a daily basis was crazy. I suppose almost any retail is like that to a point, but the automotive parts business is special because almost everything you sell is super application specific, and almost everyone through the door wants you to diagnose their problem for them. Below is a long story that perfectly illustrates what Guardian was talking about. I do like to think that during my stint at the store, ours was one of the good ones. The store manager had been doing it for a number of years, and knew all the right books to find obscure parts (there were some that didn't like to check the books, so if the computer didn't show it, it didn't exist). The assistant manager and myself both came from a farm and "backyard mechanic" background, and I had a associate degree in Automotive Technology. We would always go to the books if the computer didn't show the right parts. Even the non-management workers were generally good at our store. They were at least tinkerers, and were guys and gals who were into cars, so they weren't completely thrown off by much.

    Having said all that, I know all too well the experience of going into an auto parts store and the guy doesn't even know where to begin if he doesn't have a make/model, and the name of a part. Show him a part and ask him to match it and get a deer in headlights look. Need anything even slightly out of the ordinary and it's a huge ordeal. Recently, a co-worker of mine went to an auto parts store and asked for a timing light. The clerk asked what car it was for. He had to explain to the guy behind the counter what a timing light was. They guy said he didn't think they had those. At that point he decided that the place was no longer worth his time, and he left. So yeah, it's getting more and more difficult to get anything other than basic maintenance items from the local chains, and good luck if you need anything for an older vehicle, or for a marine/agricultural/industrial application engine.

    But as for my long story. A guy came in and wanted rotors for the front of his truck. I think it was an S-10 or some other small truck (it's been many years). I asked what engine he had, and he looked puzzled and said he just needed rotors. I said it sometimes matters, an asked simply, 4 or 6 cylinder. He rolled his eyes and looked a bit disgusted at me. He said it was a six cylinder. I sold him the rotors and he was on his way. A couple hours later he came back into the store and said I sold him the wrong rotors. He said he had since gone to our competitor to get the correct ones.

    His money was refunded to him, but he stayed at the counter and continued to complain. He said that the correct rotors from the other place were much more expensive, and he wanted us to pay him the difference (he did have the receipt from the other store). Eventually myself, the assistance manager and another employee were all trying to calm him down because he was extremely belligerent and loud. We continued to explain that we couldn't simply hand him cash out of the register. We refunded all his money for the rotors, and that was all we could do. He was totally in a rage. He said that the price he paid for the rotors from us was what he expected to have to pay, and it was our fault he had to get the correct rotors somewhere else and he shouldn't be expected to have to pay more when he should have gotten the correct product from us the first time. We had already double checked the computer and books, and the rotors we sold him were the ones called out for his truck with a 6 cylinder, so there wasn't anything more we could do.

    He finally left in a rage, only to return a short time later. He had called our corporate office and had gotten to speak with our district manager. The DM then called us and basically told us that the customer was king and we should give him the money (who knows what the guy told him). So, we gave the customer cash out of the drawer (I think it was around $30-40 because the rotors from the other place were almost double the cost of those he bought from us). He left, still pretty angry at us for all his trouble.

    Later that evening, close to closing time, he returned. After all that, it turned out that the other store had given him the wrong rotors as well. After getting the second incorrect set of rotors he checked to see what engine was in the truck. You see, he hadn't actually remembered what engine was in the truck, but was so sure it didn't matter, that he had just said 6 cylinder. When he checked later, he discovered that he actually had a 4 cylinder. So, he gave me the correct engine info and I sold him the correct rotors. He didn't apologize, and didn't return the money. I certainly wasn't about to start anything by asking for it back.
    Last edited by BigTB; 06-04-2017 at 09:27 AM.

  18. #43
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Thats the problem with corporate america,glad i work for an independent jobber.

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  19. #44
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael ray View Post
    I like rock auto when I have a couple days to wait. Unfortunately our delivery driver is a real dick and some of our stuff looks like it got tossed of a loading dock or smashed with a boulder..
    I think a lot of it has to do with the delivery co they go with... I have come to expect stuff to show up looking like that when it ships via FedEx around here. When I see FedEx in my confirmation emails, I cross my fingers! Hopefully the catalyst honeycomb in your parts wasn't all busted apart and bouncing around.

  20. #45
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by Weldalittle View Post
    I think a lot of it has to do with the delivery co they go with... I have come to expect stuff to show up looking like that when it ships via FedEx around here. When I see FedEx in my confirmation emails, I cross my fingers! Hopefully the catalyst honeycomb in your parts wasn't all busted apart and bouncing around.
    If you have problems with fedex deliveries, call their corporate offices. My wife works at one of them and has said that their CEO was steaming over some of the videos out there with their drivers tossing packages over fences and such. It was a pretty big deal. I prefer UPS, but haven't had a lick of trouble with the fedex drivers since all that went down.

  21. #46
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quality is another big problem at the parts stores...
    Last week I needed a crank sensor...they only had the house brand in stock and couldn't get a good one for 2 days. They sent it and it didn't even fit...plug wouldn't snap in the lock spot.Name:  20170518_171231.jpg
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  22. #47
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by machinisttx View Post
    If you have problems with fedex deliveries, call their corporate offices. My wife works at one of them and has said that their CEO was steaming over some of the videos out there with their drivers tossing packages over fences and such. It was a pretty big deal. I prefer UPS, but haven't had a lick of trouble with the fedex drivers since all that went down.
    It has gotten better over the last few years. I think it was more of a "before it got put on the truck" thing though. When I think back, it seems like most of the "butchered" packages have always been exhaust components. And not just through fedex, but the majority of them happened to ship fedex.

  23. #48
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    Quote Originally Posted by BigTB View Post
    He finally left in a rage, only to return a short time later. He had called our corporate office and had gotten to speak with our district manager. The DM then called us and basically told us that the customer was king and we should give him the money (who knows what the guy told him). So, we gave the customer cash out of the drawer (I think it was around $30-40 because the rotors from the other place were almost double the cost of those he bought from us). He left, still pretty angry at us for all his trouble.

    Later that evening, close to closing time, he returned. After all that, it turned out that the other store had given him the wrong rotors as well. After getting the second incorrect set of rotors he checked to see what engine was in the truck. You see, he hadn't actually remembered what engine was in the truck, but was so sure it didn't matter, that he had just said 6 cylinder. When he checked later, he discovered that he actually had a 4 cylinder. So, he gave me the correct engine info and I sold him the correct rotors. He didn't apologize, and didn't return the money. I certainly wasn't about to start anything by asking for it back.
    You should have just tacked on the $30-40 to the price of the correct rotors you sold him to make up for the money you gave him that he didn't really deserve to start with. He actually would not have been out any more money than he would have been if he had known from the start what engine he had in the truck. If he did not know what engine he actually had in the truck you have to wonder if he knew anything about installing the rotors properly to begin with.

  24. #49
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    Re: Auto Parts Stores....

    So, I was recently given a BEAR 1410 drum & rotor lathe. It needed cleaned good and rewired, I got it ready to run and checked it out, good tight machine, very little wear, but it needs a new belt a 4L220, so off to my local NAPA, I get to the counter and ask for a 4L220 belt, the gal asks for make, year & model. I tell her it's a fractional horsepower belt, she says " do you have a part number"? Yes 4L220, she dabs on the computer a little bit and proclaims "nope don't have it", so off to Amazon,I live in a very small town that NEEDS money to stay local, but I can only play so much, if you don't even offer to help me then I WILL go elsewhere. It sucks because the store owner treats me VERY WELL, he just needs to train better. I have worked for NAPA twice& they used to have a good stock of QUALITY parts, but competition has forced them to downscale on some parts, they now have two lines instead of just the one quality line.
    Last edited by CAVEMANN; 04-24-2018 at 11:04 PM.
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