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PAGID AWARDS WORKSHOP WITH £10,000 UPGRADE

PAGID AWARDS WORKSHOP WITH £10,000 UPGRADE

PROMOTION ARTICLE ON BEHALF OF PAGID

Pagid, the UK’s biggest braking brand and part of TMD Friction, has awarded a UK workshop a £10,000 upgrade, through its Workshop Winners campaign, which took place this summer.

ABP Motorsport’s Chris Meredith entered the Workshop Winners competition after purchasing Pagid brake parts from his local Euro Car Parts. After over 12,500 entries, Chris was drawn as the grand prize winner.

Chris was presented with the cheque for £10,000 by Head of UK Sales for TMD Friction Nick Hayes and Euro Car Parts Marketing Director, Bill Stimson.

The cheque allows ABP Motorsport to choose from the biggest range and best workshop equipment from Euro Car Parts Workshop Solutions – with Pagid picking up the tab.

Chris Meredith, Managing Director of ABP Motorsport, commented:

“I’ve been purchasing Pagid for over six years now. They were the first to coat their brake discs to prevent corrosion when standing still. I admire the OE quality, availability and the premium packaging. Our customers appreciate the way they look too.

“Lots of our equipment here at ABP needs upgrading, especially our MOT bay. The money will help us to make the necessary improvements and will kick start our bigger plans to make substantial investments to benefit our team and loyal customers.”

There have been many more winners in the Workshop Winners campaign too, with instant wins including 18-piece pneumatic wind back toolsets, 10-piece pro brake toolsets, Workshop Winners t-shirts and A3 retro signs.

Sylvie Layec, Sales Director, IAM at TMD Friction, commented:

“Workshops across the UK are working tirelessly day in, day out to serve their customers. Through our Proud to Fit garages, we already reward hard-working mechanics, but this summer we wanted to go one step further.

“Through the £10,000 ABP Motorsport has won, we expect to see a significant impact that will reward the garage for all their hard work. We are looking forward to seeing the effect this prize will have and the upgrades they make.”

Pagid will continue to support and reward UK garages with further promotions throughout the year. Keep up to date by visiting pagid.com and signing up to the newsletter.

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MADE IN CHINA: THE PLUSSES AND THE PITFALLS

MADE IN CHINA: THE PLUSSES AND THE PITFALLS

Choosing where to site a factory is an issue that is as involved with peoples’ perceptions as it is with politics and cost

National brake pads

China is a country where it is cheap and easy to have products manufactured, but there are a number of things to consider if you want to get involved. “My view on producing in China is that it is very good, but if you allow local engineers to do it, they will do it their own way” said David Houlden, MD of National Autoparts. “The classic is if you give them a drawing and it will come back differently, because ‘it is easier’”.

Houlden is clear on a solution. “To overcome that you do it yourself. You have people out there on a very regular basis and keep those people in the factories. We employ a UK quality company to be out there and check stuff as well as our own engineers are there on a regular basis”.

He adds that the two factories that his company uses are owned in a joint venture with a local partner.

SKILL SET
When National took the decision to introduce pads, a new skill set was required. “Metal we understand, but for friction we had to take on someone for two and a half years” he said. “We didn’t know a lot about pads, so we employed a consultant who had OE experience, who is heavily involved in anything we do”.

However, manufacturing on the other side of the world is not without its problems. Even if the product quality is consistent, there is an issue of logistics to consider. Colin Smit, UK MD of Polish manufacturer Lumag, which sells the Breck light vehicle pad range in the UK said: “I wouldn’t want to place an order with five months worth of stock all the way from China”.

“From here (in Doncaster) we have a 98 percent pick rate and we can place a daily delivery on the factory if we want to. It only takes three days to get the stock from the factory” he said, adding that the warehouse had quite a high stockturn and there was no reason to tie stock, and therefore cash, up in inventory.

Producing in Europe is markedly more expensive, something Smit admits to being ‘a difficult sell’ to customers that are simply focused on price. “It’s a premium product, not a white- box product. We are targeting customers of premium brands”.

Meanwhile, some brake components are produced even closer home and are remanufactured in the UK.Brake Engineering has produced in Wales since it was founded in the 1980s. However, the days of needing to accrue a big stockpile of core for one reference before you begin are in the past. “Traditionally, a remanufacturer would stockpile individual references in cages until there is a large enough batch for it to remake” said Steve Willis, IAM General Manager at the firm’s parent company. Today, Willis says that this notion is obsolete. “If the car is on a ramp and needing a part, the garage isn’t going to wait for us to assemble a core pile, they will go somewhere else – so it is critical for us to service the need as soon as possible and Wrexham is all about making sure the highest service level is maintained” he said.

 

Posted in Braking, CAT Features, Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, News, Retailer NewsComments (0)

FACTORS SNAP UP TMD FRICTION’S PREMIUM TEXTAR BRAND

FACTORS SNAP UP TMD FRICTION’S PREMIUM TEXTAR BRAND

PROMOTION ARTICLE ON BEHALF OF TEXTAR

Three new stockists have been secured following April’s launch of superior brake brand, Textar, to the UK market, developed by global OE friction manufacturer, TMD Friction.

Parts distributors, BMG, Super Spares and Direct Auto Parts now stock a full range of Textar products including brake pads and accessories, as well as brake fluid, available for next day delivery. The range of high-performance brakes is also complemented by a wide range of brake discs, including high carbon and composite discs, with the full range covering 99.9% of the UK car parc.

Textar is a global premium brand offering a selection of OE and aftermarket products with a renowned reputation for high quality, performance and endurance. This makes Textar the brand of choice for OE and aftermarket, as well as a sought-after product offering for factors and garages.

Nick Hayes, UK Sales Manager of TMD Friction, said: “Expectations were high for the launch of Textar which, I’m pleased to say, have been undoubtedly met. Along with securing three new stockists, we also have a number of factor contracts in the pipeline, that can see how the Textar passenger car brand can elevate their current product offerings. It’s an exciting time for us as a friction manufacturer and for the industry.”

Utilising cutting-edge technology, Textar brakes are precision engineered to offer maximum safety, performance and comfort. This uncompromising approach has been the ethos of the brand for more than 100 years and has led to Textar being a trusted partner to the world’s leading vehicle manufacturers. For more information on Textar please contact UK.technical@tmdfriction.co.uk.

Posted in Braking, Featured Sidebar, Industry InsightComments (1)

AUTOMECHANIKA IN REVIEW

AUTOMECHANIKA IN REVIEW

For us at the magazine, it is funny to think that 2017 was only the second time Automechanika has taken place at the NEC, such is the amount that we have written and speculated about it. Nonetheless, this is only the second time the show has happened here, and it seems much of the aftermarket holds an opinion about it.

For me, the proceedings started the day before the event as SMMT had invited a handful of journalists to dinner at a nearby country pile to talk about the show, the aftermarket and the motor industry in general. One interesting stat that Chief Exec Mike Hawes raised was that the British public now spend more online on car accessories than they do on cosmetics. I haven’t been able to verify this yet, and I suspect it includes replacement tyres and servicing booked online, but even so it goes to show that the new generation of motorists are less willing to do things the old way. A point to ponder perhaps.

After the show was opened, complete with ribbon cutting and the traditional comedy big scissors (I wonder where they come from?) the show got underway and we grab show organiser Simon Albert for a few words. As the show had only just opened, he didn’t have much to tell us that we didn’t already know, such as the longer opening hours, increase in aisle space etc. However, he did confirm his hit list of companies that he’d like to see attending in the future and, of most significance to us, confirmed that the show would return next year.

On the Valeo stand

This surprised me a little, as I’d assumed that the show would become biennial in the years that the Frankfurt show was not held. However, I was keen to get going as my appointment book was full and I was running late before I had even started.

The first visit took me across Hall 19 and into Hall 20 where I could have a quick look at some of the stands as I scurried past. Liqui Moly and Auto Repar had particularly amazing looking stands. Schaeffler had used a space right next to the main entrance to build a gleaming white stage where cutaway versions of various products had been mounted on plinths for the reps to demonstrate. Valeo meanwhile, had approached the concept of having a stand in a different way, as it had simply brought a huge truck and trailer kitted out with demonstration models of various things into the hall.

MEANDERING
I won’t trouble you with the details of every meeting I had or what everyone said, except that on the first day a number of stands reported that footfall seemed a little low, which could be down to appalling weather that day as well as a crash blocking one of the motorways near the NEC that may have put some off attending. I should add that if the attendance was low on the first day, I didn’t notice it. From my point of view, Hall 19, where I spent the bulk of the time, seemed annoyingly busy with meandering people with a tendency to stop in front of me filling the aisles.

It was pleasing to see that many exhibitors had brought in things other than their products to keep people amused. Sales-i brought an Out Run arcade machine for example (a game that I spent too much time on in my youth). Denso brought a VR racing car simulator, which I quite fancied trying out, but decided not to as the racing driver Rebecca Jackson was looking on, and I had no wish to humiliate myself. Other stands brought various cars and bikes from series that they sponsor as well as the usual show novelties.

Holding an event after the show is always a risk, because while there will be a ready supply of people in the industry who are in the same place, there is no telling that they will be in the mood to go somewhere else after spending a day at the show. Even if they do, there is every chance that someone else has invited them first. With this in mind, I was curious to see how many people went to an event held by Motaquip at Warwick Castle on the first night. The answer as it turned out was a lot of people as the event was full. It was one of the more fun events that we’ve been to, with two apparently empty suits of armour jumping off the wall and alarming diners by staging a battle between the tables.

STAGES
Back at the show the following day I would have liked to have had more time to attend some of the industry and technical seminars that were taking place on a number of stages across the halls. Big names from the world of diagnostics including Frank Massey and James Dillon had been brought in as a lure to get technicians to the show (which by all accounts worked) while the heads of the garage associations talked about the various threats and opportunities du jour in the aftermarket. I did manage to get over to hear the winner of the Garage of the Year announced, which turned out to be Motorserv UK, which readers who have been paying close attention might recall we visited this time last year.

One notable absence from the show was TMD Friction (who are on record saying that they have ‘no plans’ to exhibit). However, the company did rent a plaza suite just outside of the main halls to hold a Pagid Live event in association with Euro Car Parts where a number of garage owners and technicians (the majority of whom had been brought down for the event) who, after a day at the show spend a couple of hours enjoying presentations on the benefits of the Pagid Expert programme and on ECPs garage scheme (see Hot Story).

If your reason for visiting the show was to find new products, you wouldn’t have been disappointed. Delphi brought a new bit of diagnostic kit for high- pressure injectors, European Exhaust and Catalyst introduced a 6-in-1 fuel system cleaner at the show and in a similar vein, Forté launched a 4-in-1 cleaning machine. Essentra Components launched something called a ‘High Tech Fluid Absorption Plug’ and I’m sure there were many other things never before seen at the event.

Throughout the show, I spent most of my time in the three aftermarket halls, but on the final day I had a meeting with Stericycle (a company that manages recalls for the VMs) and so I spent a while exploring the area dedicated to the automotive supply chain. It was markedly quieter than the aftermarket halls, although it should be noted that while the supply chain market as a whole is huge and worth big money, the number of buyers within it is relatively small, and stands dealing with VM services were of little interest to technicians, so it might be unfair to judge its success on the amount of feet in the room alone.

‘Billy’ character on Bosch stand

However, the highlight of the show for me came late in the afternoon on the final day when Helen Watkins from Bosch, who was manning the Extra stand, was accosted by a strange small man who kept offering her some of his special ‘home made’ sweets, much to the amusement of onlookers – apparently he’d been coming on the stand and doing this at various points throughout the show. However, just when Helen couldn’t stand the embarrassment anymore, the fellow took off what turned out to be a wig and false teeth to reveal himself as a well known customer of the firm. Apparently, his alter-ego ‘Billy No-Mates’ is a character that he regularly performs for some of his unsuspecting suppliers, and it was much to the amusement of the crowd that had built up.

It was almost time for us to leave in order to high-tail it back to London while there was still time to vote (remember that?) One point that is inescapable is the topic of the show frequency. As a conservative guess, I reckon I spoke to 40 company bosses during the show and the overwhelming majority said that they thought the show should run once every two years, preferably during the non- Frankfurt years in order to keep costs reasonable and keep the momentum of the show. From the point of view of the whole CAT team, we could have happily stayed there for a month if we could – there were so many people to see. However, I’m always curious to know the experience of our readers. Did you go? Were you exhibiting? What were the highlights, and what would you have liked to have seen? Give me a shout at greg.whitaker@haymarket.com.

Posted in Accessories, All Makes, Batteries, Belts, Braking, Car Care, CAT Features, Catalytic Converters, Clutches, Cooling, Exhausts, Factor & Supplier News, Filters, Garage News, General, Japanese - Korean - American, Japanese Parts, Lighting, News, Retailer News, Seals & Gaskets, Sensors, Shock Absorbers, Spark Plugs, Starters and Alternators, Steering & Suspension, Styling, Tools, Wheelhubs & Flanges, WipersComments (0)

GSF OPENS BRISTOL NORTH BRANCH

GSF OPENS BRISTOL NORTH BRANCH

Factor chain GSF Car Parts has announced the opening of a new store in Bristol.

Located at the Aztec West Business Park, Bristol North joins its South and central branches within the region as part of company expansion plans.

Following a similar setup to other stores, the 10,000sq ft. facility houses GSF’s fastest selling lines including braking, filtration and clutches with a strong focus on OE equipment for workshops.

“We’ll be looking initially within a 15 mile radius for deliveries”, said Simon McMullen, Regional Director at GSF Car Parts. “Our analysis suggests this gives us well over 100 garages and associated trades to target, so there are lot of opportunities for us” adding that the factor hasn’t ruled out building more sites across the city.

He concluded. “We’ve got experienced staff in place who know Bristol well. It’s been a great team effort to find and fit out suitable premises, put the staff in place and open with stock on the shelves – all in under a couple of months. We’re sure there’s even more potential for us around the area and we’ve been excited by the enthusiastic response already.”

For more information on deliveries and opening times, garages can head over to the GSF website.

Posted in Accessories, Batteries, Braking, CAT Features, Clutches, Factor & Supplier News, Filters, Garage News, NewsComments (0)

KEEPING REMAN AT THE CORE

KEEPING REMAN AT THE CORE

Tom Curtis shows CAT around Shaftec’s HQ in Hockley

Long-established brake and steering remanufacturer Shaftec has been on a multi-million pound expansion programme over the last few years, having relocated the majority of operations from its previous Nechells site to a modern 42,000 sq ft. industrial space in 2015. The move has since enabled the Tecdoc data supplier to double its production and stock capacity, supplying over 6,000 drive shafts and 1,300 CV joint references to the aftermarket, backed-up by a recent brand and website revamp. This is where we met with Shaftec Sales Director Tom Curtis who took us through the day-to-day operation.

CORE
Our first stop began at the delivery depot where staff carried out their daily runs to collect and return old core for a second chance of life. However, there is a mandatory procedure to undertake before products are restocked on the shelves. “Our drivers go and collect the core which is booked in electronically”, said Curtis. “Everything has to come back in Shaftec boxes for two reasons, one, it’s easy identification because it’s got our part number on it and we know what parts are in the box, which is checked with images when it comes back in. Separate to that, the driver’s sheet will tally up the return with what’s in the box so they can match up to each part”, adding that the firm will usually receive up to 20 pallets a day.

CHECK-IN
Parts brought back are checked- in individually through the company’s online booking system. With many components to get through, Curtis and the team have adopted a quick and efficient process that incorporates separate check-in points for each product category. A check-in station is also utilised for stock not fit for remanufacturing which is something crucial that Curtis is trying to make customers aware of. “We’re traing customers to look for the right returns. In turn, our customers are training garages to make sure that when something comes back off of the car that it’s fit for remanufacturing” Curtis continued. “Things like this can carry a £100 surcharge and if you reject them, it’s going to cause upset so we try to educate our consumers as much as we can from that perspective”.

Calipers await a second life

PRODUCTION
The next phase involves bringing components to the production benches where operators will strip down driveshafts and calipers to bare metal, before adding in new pistons, seals and CV joints later on. Before this can be executed, parts must first enter a deep clean process via the Shot Blasting Machines to remove all traces of rust and grease. “The Shot Blast Machines will take rust off to make it a clear part and we’ll use a Soda Blaster System for more intricate parts where rust gets into certain areas of the component”, said Curtis. After this, the casing gets a fresh coat of paint.

ORDERS
The firm can process up to 300 orders a day managed through Shaftec’s in-house production system. This provides staff with a run down of all the components required for each customer purchase. The system follows a similar set up to core check-in whereby operators will construct driveshafts and calipers at separate assembly points along with computer systems, assisting them with the essential CV and outer joints needed for each customer order. Curtis elaborated. “Our IT system tells operators what they have to build and what model the CV joints are. Our programme also tracks the status of who’s building it and how many are being built each day”.

Before ending up in Shaftec branded packaging, calipers are pressure tested in all car conditions and receive a part number after the all clear. “We have three testing machines to test each caliper before it’s boxed up” said Curtis. “Like a traffic light, it either passes or fails and typically 1/100 will fail and end up in scrap”.

MOVING FORWARD
Once our tour finished, Curtis explained that the firm’s next agenda is increasing stock capacity further by building another mezzanine floor to cater for its steering portfolio. He concluded. “We almost have all of our wares in-house but eventually, we want to bring the remaining units from our Nechelles site into this space with the addition of a new mezzanine floor for steering racks and pumps”. The supplier has also said it has taken on more electrical steering systems as hybrid and Connected Car technology becomes more commonplace in the years to come.

Posted in Braking, Factor & Supplier News, News, Out and About with CAT, Steering & SuspensionComments (1)

CHANGING TIMES FOR BRAKE PADS

CHANGING TIMES FOR BRAKE PADS

Overseas’ and EU regulations has seen a range of old and new braking technologies come into play, writes Daniel Moore

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The steady growth of the UK parc along with VMs’ consistent goal to downsize engines in line with emission laws, has contributed to numerous technologies being changed on the vehicle’s braking system.

EMISSION LAWS
There is a law that will soon be introduced in the US, which bans the use of chopped copper wire as a binding agent. There’s a perfectly good reason for this: Jonathan Allen, Motorparts Regional Manager at Federal- Mogul, explains: “Heavy metals build up in the water table. You can’t just remove copper from a component for one state or one country, it applies to a vehicle platform on a global basis where the copper has to be progressively removed from the brake pads”.

Federal Mogul removed copper from its pads some years ago, before the threat of legislation had become real, as had Delphi. SJ Sarkar, a Manager for Braking at the firm, “We have removed the copper from our brake pads, years ahead of the 2025 legislation but whilst still meeting the same rigorous safety standards” he said. “Our new formulation offers improved fade performance, and unlike some other brands, retains all its life too”.

It almost goes without saying that it is fundamental for brake manufacturers to conduct test protocols to evaluate the strength and performance of the replacement part, making sure it measures up to a prescribed tolerance of 15 percent of the OE part it’s replacing. Julie Boardman, Product Manager at Quinton Hazell, elaborates: “Any references introduced to the aftermarket from 1st November 2016 are now subject to this approval and our Quinton Hazell brake disc suppliers are 100 percent committed to this”. Dr. Keith Ellis, a Braking Director at Comline points out that R90 will no longer just apply to pads. “R90 regulations will become applicable to brake discs in the very near future, and Comline is already well down the line in certifying its product range. Again, as with pads, each disc is put through a uniform set of tests to guarantee the quality of
the product” he said, adding that all brands would take time to be fully compliant.

CORROSION PROTECTION
Of course corrosion is inevitable, but workshops can apply metal-free greases to prolong the service life of old and new brake parts entering the market as Scott Irwin, Technical Manager of Mintex highlights, “We can counteract corrosion by using a metal-free grease like Ceratec and apply it to the moving parts such as the calliper sliders and pads abutments.” He continued: “We can also stop the build up of corrosion by applying the grease to the underside of the abutment shims once the pad carrier has been cleaned down”. With the new standards and suppliers using different methods of producing high- quality products, the stage is set for a range of improved products that motor factors can tell their customers about.

Posted in Braking, Factor & Supplier News, Garage News, NewsComments (0)

Drivelink

Drivelink Automotive Components Ltd are pleased to launch a new, fully re-engineered range of brake calipers, which compliment the existing products, driveshafts, CV joint kits, power steering racks and pumps supplied to the major motor factors. The extensive caliper range is a collaboration between Drivelink and the largest caliper rebuilder in Europe, SBS – better known as NK, which is reflected in the caliper box livery. The catalogue covers the majority of the UK vehicle parc and is available now in hard copy. System catalogues will follow shortly as will CD copies. All Drivelink re-engineered products have a two year or 24k mile warranty.

Posted in BrakingComments (0)

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