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Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by ak_diane, Aug 16, 2012.
How'd he get the filter w/o the tool?
I'm not sure just how tounge in cheek your reply is... Let me play devils advocate just for the heck of it. Do I expect a dealer to spend the capital to buy, stock and store parts, AND compete on price with the warehouse online parts places? No. I would LIKE them to stock common parts like valve shims, valve cover gaskets, etc. I have no problem with them having to charge more than an online place for this. I still check with the dealer before ordering, as things can change daily.
It really depends on the online place you deal with also. I have found at least one that does not stock parts, and they order once a week, the parts ship to them, then they ship the parts out to the customer. It takes 2 weeks to get a part from them. I will gladly pay more from a dealer to get it quicker. I like Babbit's because they are geographically relatively close to me, and I can usually get OEM parts within 2-3 days.
I know the K bikes take a special tool, do the twins use it as well?
It's only a filter wrench and you only need the special one if you have an OEM filter. Even then any half-decent mechanic could easily find another way to get the filter off. How do you think SilkMoneyLove got it off in his garage?
Some dealer wrenches don't want to work on bikes which need special tools they lack. That some owner managed to hack it doesn't mean you should expect a dealer to do the same.
If the filter leaked & your buddy fell or the bike siezed, then you'd post what a crappy dealer screwed up the bike.
My sympathy is 100% with the dealer and 0% with your whining bitching.
No. Tires have tiered net pricing. The higher your volume, the lower your cost.
The difference can be huge.
There is only one dealership in my area that's a gold-level parts dealer, and they can get Dunlops for near internet prices. I ran one set of RoadSmarts and hated them.
None of the other dealers do enough volume in tires to have net pricing that will allow them to compete with internet pricing. Add to that the fact that they don't stock the tires I need, and I'm not going to pay a premium to have a dealership order the tires I can order myself.
There have been occasions where I've bought Metzelers from BMW dealers because I needed them and they were in stock. I paid a premium, though...
The dealers usually order from the same places we do (directly or indirectly) and will pay the same or less, certainly not more. If they claim otherwise they are either making stupid buying decisions or lying. Unless a dealer plans to mark up 100% (or whatever they mark up for something they keep in stock), they should be able to get within $20 or $30, especially for something which is special-ordered. Make $25 on the tire and $25 or so on the fitting, for each of two tires - That's a modest but fair profit and should keep the customer happy.
In a former life, I worked as a management consultant, primarily for retailers. One very big retailer (who shall go nameless, but they paint their stores a color partway between red and yellow) lo-o-oves market basket statistics, which is to say they want to get every dollar they can into your cart and go to some fairly extreme lengths to do so.
You dealer recognizes that if you get out the door, and they don't extract a penny in profit from you, they've failed - you have a market basket of zero, and they still spent money to get you in the door and serve you while you're there, not to mention the chance to turn you into a repeat customer.
Other dealers see it as some twisted zero-sum game, where they get you in the door, but if you don't give them a high-margin sale (buying a bike, or tires, or high $ aftermarket) they're suddenly not interested, and they let low-margin dollars in the service department walk out the door.
Also, why is parts & service a low-margin department, anyway? I'd think that it's the big profit center that supports the business; they do a lot of non-revenue work for the sales floor, but that doesn't make them any less of a profit center.
Here's my dealer story: I bought a '00 R1100RT in Seattle for a fly-and-ride this summer. I'm up in Vancouver with my folks, and notice the oil sightglass is damaged - leaking and mostly opaque. So I go to one of greater Vancouver's two BMW dealerships, since it's Tuesday, and I'm leaving Wednesday, and after a little discussion (yes, the RT's sightglass is the same as the GS's ...), they have it - and they can install it in their shop, too, if I can wait another week or possibly more.
Not a horror story, but yeah, they could have handled that one better. (Not to mention that my father's there, too, just drooling over a matte green Guzzi Griso. Come on, walk up and talk to the man. He hasn't ridden for 40 years, but they could have had him on a new V7 in about fifteen minutes).
You're right, but I think that you're wrong too - an online retailer who undercuts wholesale pricing will get the business, especially when it comes to small shops. Online retail represents a ceiling price for a wholesaler, within reason (an online retailer can't provide co-op dollars for advertising, assistance with inventory control, or special deals here and there).
I bought a pair of Pirelli Diablos for my ST2 earlier this year, and the local moto store's internet site undercut the store pricing. So I asked the store to match their own internet pricing because I want the local store to get credit for the sale, not the website. I went back 3 times (they're less than 2 miles away, so sue me) and only after the 3rd time did I get a callback from the manager ... the day after I gave up and bought the tires online.
As a city P&D driver I deliver to many dealerships, after years of hearing back room war stories, internet customer war stories, plus my personal experiences, IMO the customer has it much easier.
Sometimes there are stupid or lazy employees, but some customers can be downright insane.
(I believe you; I just want to hear some of the stories!)
Not too tongue-in-cheek, Dave! On a V-Star 650 you change six O-rings with every valve service. Four valve cover O-rings, and two cam cover O-rings. The stealership has V-Star 650s through their doors quite often for service, and they always have three or four used ones for sale. Being so commonly used, you'd think they would keep a stack in stock. Like your valve shims, they don't stock 'em. So I had to place an order.
It took two and a half weeks for them to deliver. They didn't order through a distributor, either; they ordered my O-rings through a car dealership. I had two slips of paper in the box with my parts: the distributor's invoice, and the car dealership's invoice with bike shop stamps over top of the dealership's logos. So my box went from a national distributor to the car dealership, got invoiced, was sent to the bike stealership to get stamped, and then sent to me. And I paid a premium for it.
Comparing Babbitt's pricing to what I paid... Stealership: $55.77 shipped to my door. Babbitt's: $42.28 shipped half-way across the country. That $13 and change is lunch and a half-tank of gas!
Hence my exuberance over Babbitt's!
I don't remember if we swapped the filter or just dumped and filled the oil. I have an oil filter wrench (socket really) for the BMW1100 boxer.
Same sort of thing happens with motorcycle sales. I'm a little old lady, literally. If I go into a dealership with a man I become totally invisible. Except for one case where I was in a BMW dealership looking for an R1100RT. The salesman approached me and spoke only to me not the guy I was with. The salesman kept commenting as I signed the papers that he had never sold a bike so quickly!
I can get a pile of O rings at Napa for $55.
Better yet, go to a bearing supply place like Bearing Service. You'll be able to specify the compound. Standard is usually Buna-N, but if it's going to be in contact with fuel, use Viton. I needed a fuel pump o-ring for the Ducati. List at Ducati was $65. Got it locally for 2 bucks.
The one that stands out the most. A guy took the dealership to court demanding a new car because "they damaged the paint of a limited edition car (Toyota? ) which ruined its value.
The guy, a retired cop now working as an insurance adjuster.
The damage, the paint was spidered around the screws that held on the front spoiler under the bumper. The onlt way to see it was lay under the car with a flashlight.
The dealer made a monitary settlemet end the lawsuit.
Told to me by a service writer at a car dealership:
An old fart bought a car. Brought it back every week for something or another to be addressed under warranty. Finally the writer sat down with this fart and assisted him making a comprehensive list of anything which may be wrong now or may go wrong in the future.
The writer took the car in and did the work himself. Gave the car back to the fart. Next week the fart was back & said, "I want my complaint back".
May be apocryphal.
Totally accurate and understandable but for the fact that she was the BMW salesperson...seriously...I asked...