Things Dealers tell Customers

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ak_diane, Aug 16, 2012.

  1. Disco Stu

    Disco Stu Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2006
    Oddometer:
    6,050
    Location:
    The Center of my Own Universe
    I've queried the local BMW parts manager this very question a couple of months ago after the fourth time of him telling me 'no, they don't have it in stock, but they can order it'

    I politely said: I understand that you can order the part, but so can I. And it will be on my door step in 3 days for the same price or less, including shipping, that I'd pay you to have to come back out here and get it in a week. I'm not trying to be a dick here, but what value or service are you adding that would convince me to spend more money AND more time to get the exact same part?


    He had no response.
  2. DR Donk

    DR Donk Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2009
    Oddometer:
    471
    Location:
    Western Michigan
    I politely said: I understand that you can order the part, but so can I. And it will be on my door step in 3 days for the same price or less, including shipping, that I'd pay you to have to come back out here and get it in a week. I'm not trying to be a dick here, but what value or service are you adding that would convince me to spend more money AND more time to get the exact same part?


    That's the dilemma, do I support the local dealer or just order the part exactly as he will do? I try to support the dealer but I admit, except for getting my bike serviced and buying oil and filter from the dealer, I buy mostly online.
  3. dwoodward

    dwoodward Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2005
    Oddometer:
    6,647
    Location:
    Pacific NorthWet, Napa Valley North
    [Tire thread]
    I normally got 11k out of PR2s, and gave them up because they were losing grip, not because they were bald.
    [/Tire thread]
  4. dwoodward

    dwoodward Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2005
    Oddometer:
    6,647
    Location:
    Pacific NorthWet, Napa Valley North
    Datapoint: Needed an air filter for a Seca II. Same part fit lots of mid-90s Yamahas. Nobody had it in stock (OK, no surprise) but "I can order it, probably be 1-2 weeks" is not acceptable when I can buy one online myself for 1/2 the price and have it in three days. That's what the shops have to compete with; and for people who for whatever reason don't do their own maintenance, paying someone else to also order the right parts is probably a fair part of the game. My sister in law has a lot of quads that she and her family ride a lot a couple months a year, then neglect teh rest of the year. About a month before she wants to go riding, they pull 'em out, and the ones that don't start they take to the dealership, typically to have the carbs de-gunked. I think a little Stabil in the gas and a battery tender would be easier and cheaper, the the shop likes her method... :dunno

    If it was 1-2 days, and I had faith the dealer would actually deliver in that time, I'd have paid that premium to have it a day or two sooner.

    Meanwhile, the local Cycle Gear has been very good; they'll take the time to look up parts in PU, WPS, and TR, look them up in the computer, and order from either the cheapest or whichever has it closest, my choice. Most of what I buy there is special order, and only once in the past half dozen orders has it taken longer to get than they anticpated.

    Shims take up no space, but I would suspect that they are "Service Department" stock, not "Parts Department" stock. Ditto other very common maintenance items; while for less common ones, they order the expected parts in when you schedule (in advance) a service appointment. This seems reasonable to me.
  5. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,936
    Location:
    Southern Louisiana or Southern England or ...
    Things my local Suzuki dealer has not had in stock, but can order for a premium price of course, for my DR350 include:
    • Jets
    • O-rings
    • Crush washers
    • Spark plug
    • Brake pads
    My bike has been out of production for over 10 years but the parts I'm asking for should be common with a good proportion of all Suzuki's ever made. The shop has a parts guy and a modest warehouse so they must be stocking something!!

    IIRC, they DID have an oil filter but wanted something silly like $18 for it - I can buy a dozen for that price on line.

    I never bought anything from them and have basically given up trying.
  6. wb57

    wb57 Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    8,496
    Location:
    Central NC
    Things like that have NEVER been my complaint. I get that you can't stock every SKU ever invented for everything. I have a problem with a shop not having an air filter, OEM or aftermarket, for a YZ250F that fits ~125 different models. Or a throttle tube. Or a brake lever. Or a single rear tire that fits. Etc.

    Big shops. Multi brand shops with a shitload of showroom square footage and hundreds of bikes, kwads, scooters, PWCs, etc. New two story buildings with spiral staircases, etc. But no parts. Not even stuff I consider consumables.
  7. Hondarider

    Hondarider Hero of the Stupid

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Oddometer:
    793
    Location:
    Adams, MA
    "This Honda XR650L is going to be the hot bike this year...you better move fast before someone buys this one." :huh

    A sales guy actually said this to me a year or so ago. I was stunned. I felt like Marty McFly. I had to find a newspaper to see if it was indeed 1992.
  8. NC-Okie

    NC-Okie Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    3,065
    Location:
    Moore, Oklahoma
    slartidbartfast
    I currently have 9 Suzuki oil filters for the DR350 (Suzuki # 16510-38240) on the shelf and a price of $6.85 each. Also EBC brake pads not Suzuki pads for $31.95. You can't have everything on the shelf but we try to have items that have a sales history.

    The owner here is not one to spend heavly on the building and it shows but he pays his monthly bills and people do not believe me when I tell them we maintain about 180K in parts and accesories from month to month.

    Yesterday we did have a strange situation in service. We had an 1985 Magna, 1985 Shadow and 1984 Goldwing on service lifts all at once. It was kinda strange walking across the service floor and realizing its 2013 and having 3 mid 1980's bikes in for service at the same time.
  9. farqhuar

    farqhuar Human guinea pig

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    1,611
    Location:
    Melbun, Oztralia
    I think that is an excellent commentary on how reliable bikes from 30 years ago are, and how much Japan changed the whole motorcycle industry.

    When I first started riding 40 years ago, 30 year old bikes from the 1940s were simply never seen - either on the road or in a workshop - they had been retired many years earlier as being archaic, unreliable and obsolete devices unworthy of spending time and/or money on repair or maintenance.
  10. Mambo Dave

    Mambo Dave I demand proof, sir.

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Oddometer:
    8,073
    Location:
    11 ft. AMSL
    I would fully understand. If you're here in the USA, there's little doubt we're becoming an 'Idiocracy,' and you're going to have to deal with that more and more. Part of the problem is that this market is not like some Asian countries where certain runs of scooters/motorcycles were made for years and years at a time - in far more numbers than any bike sold here in the USA.

    I know that, for service, the local motorcycle dealership states that they will not work on a bike that is over X amount of years old. (I think that number is something like 10 or 12). Likewise, I don't think it would hurt your business any (but it may help with the lengthy stupid conversations you're dealing with) if you put a large sign up stating that because you can't stock all parts for all bikes, your warehouse will not stock even common or consumable parts for any bike over 12 years old.

    Now if an air filter, oil filter, brake pad or muffler bearing on the next customer's 1995 crappola bike happens to use the same part as a more current production run, then "Wow, Mr. Cheapskate/Motorcycle Collector customer - your'e in luck!" If not, then they can relish in the wait for parts that is incurred by nearly all antique collectors.
  11. The Jerk

    The Jerk Bring us some fresh wine!

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,688
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    A bit off topic but this reminded me of shopping around for a car and visiting the flagship VW dealer in Manhattan, owned by VWoA corporate but operated by Open Road (local group that operates a couple other VW dealers in the area).

    Now this is the premier VW dealer in the country probably, beautiful building and showroom, great Manhattan location, clean, modern, etc.

    Get approached by a salesman, mention to him that I'm looking at the GTI, also looking at the Ford Focus. No sooner do I make mention of this than he opens up the door of the GTI on the showroom floor and slams it, giving the old "THAT'S a Volkswagen, you don't get that in a Ford" BS - then goes on to talk about how he could hoist himself up on the open door (though the guy was kind of obese so I secretly wanted to see him try).

    Holeeee shit I felt like I just went back in time 30 years. What a turn off. Clearly the guy was not the "right fit" for the dealer because when I went back like a week later he was "no longer with the company" :lol3
  12. Yossarian™

    Yossarian™ Deputy Cultural Attaché

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2007
    Oddometer:
    10,518
    Location:
    the 'Ha
    Reminds me of the "badger" commercials.

    <iframe width="640" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/34r4-yzCyVw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
  13. The Jerk

    The Jerk Bring us some fresh wine!

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,688
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY

    Yeah I think that's the same guy :D
  14. wb57

    wb57 Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    8,496
    Location:
    Central NC
    Found out the hard way on jets and keep a pretty decent collection on hand now.
    O-rings, crush washers and the like can be had at any decent hardware/auto parts store.
    I get my plugs at Advance Auto for about 1/3-1/2 of what the dealer wants for the same plug.
    Brake pads... find out what EBC or Galfer or whatever fits and cross reference it for them. A quick check shows that the EBC part # is FA135x. Those are used on a bazillion different bikes. Something will work if they stock anything at all. Some parts guys can do the cross reference, some need you to do it for them.
  15. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,936
    Location:
    Southern Louisiana or Southern England or ...
    I'm aware of the alternative sources. Needed a couple of more specialized (but still not totally obscure) parts such as cam cover sealing washers. While I was there, I would've been willing to pay a few $ extra for the convenience of one-stop shopping. As others have said, however, I refuse to pay sky-high prices for someone to order a bunch of parts I can order myself for delivery to my own doorstep.

    Local BMW dealer OTOH always has maintenance parts in stock (crush washers, etc.) and often more obscure stuff, doesn't charge an-arm-and-a-leg for them considering they have them handy, and usually provides free advice (where needed) with a smile.
  16. jules083

    jules083 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    5,788
    Location:
    Richmond, Ohio
    Just left my local KTM/yamaha/Kawasaki dealership. Dropped my fjr forks off for a rebuild.

    Would you believe that, while I was there, they sold me honda parts for my honda that they dont sell but have parts in stock for? After that the mechanic gave me advice on changing a sportster clutch, then had the nerve to let me look at the shop manual for my atv that I'm doing a valve adjustment on soon.

    Fork seals needed ordered, but I can hardly blame them since they've never to my knowledge sold an fjr there. Small place.

    The nerve of some people. :lol3

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2
  17. Navy Chief

    Navy Chief Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,721
    Location:
    Waynesboro, PA
    You have a 1 in 1,000 shop there, if you want them to stay around keep supporting them. I wish there was one of those around here....
  18. wb57

    wb57 Long timer

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2009
    Oddometer:
    8,496
    Location:
    Central NC

    Didn't mean to come across smarmy, if I did.

    I haven't found a dealer in a good while that was geared towards, or even knew what to do with, someone that works on their own bikes.

    We've "evolved" from an era where it took a couple of weeks or so to order parts, BUT the dealers kept a lot in stock, to where it takes a few days to get parts and they keep virtually NOTHING in stock.
  19. jules083

    jules083 Long timer

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    5,788
    Location:
    Richmond, Ohio
    Yeah it's a good place. I go there as much as possible, pretty much everything except tires. They have their problems though for sure. Mainly the salesmen are idiots, but if I do to buy a bike I already know what I want anyways so it doesn't really matter.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk 2
  20. C/1/509

    C/1/509 Why?

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2006
    Oddometer:
    9,593
    ^^^ What's sad to me is that is noteworthy, versus normal...