> Wound Up wrote:
>>>Maybe people should post the parts and vendors they were both
>>>satisfied with, and those they were not; including how good customer
>>>service was, etc.
>>I have a few choice words I'd like to say, and a few stories to tell
>>about shops and vendors. But I don't want to start a possible flame
>>war, or be accused of libel. And I don't know exactly where the line
>>has been previously drawn in this NG, ("you guys are on your own" says
>>CJ), with regard to talking about shops and vendors that suck, and
>>sharing experiences I've had with specific people.
>>I'd love to. Believe me, I would exorciate one so-called expert at
>>length, and tell stories of this person's butchery and fraud. But I
>>thought I'd just make the general editorial comment instead.
> Just a couple of my own home-grown homilies: (a) People are as good as
> they need to be; and (b) When you go with mods and aftermarket parts,
> you bring it on yourself.
I agree with (a), generally speaking. As far as (b) goes, I will wait
to see what you say.
> What (a) means, is that while most people are of good will and all, the
> system in which each man finds himself will require compromises, will
> require results which standing alone are less than perfect. In the
> case of aftermarket vendors, let's say somebody makes an utterly
> bulletproof cable clutch kit, but the materials involved require a
> retail price of $150 more than the competition. How long does he stay
> in business? NOT VERY LONG! Just think about all these small
> businesses, guys who've put everything they own on the line, their
> families' welfare too; they GOT to keep the doors open.
It is true that market differentiation based on a quality product or
service assumes you can be IN that market long enough to sell the
quality product or service. So I see your point on that. Not everyone
can absorb losses for years, or even months, before they get a foothold
and some recognition.
> What (b) means, is that you ARE your own R&D. My garage is full of
> bits and pieces of ideas that seemed like a good idea at the time, but
> they didn't work out. On the other hand, sometimes the part works
> exactly as it should, first time out.
The problem I have is the -intent-. The intent is not to actually serve
the market, it is to do it no service at all, or a disservice. At
first, it probably wasn't, but these same people who got into the
business because they were passionate hobbyists, professional mechanics,
and/or engineers with good idea #1 often turn malevolent and evil
because of not-too-bright idea #2, which is that good liars often make
more money. Slick ads and bullshit sell shitty parts. Having or making
buddies in hobbyist magazines helps, too. Have the mags heard
complaints? Maybe, but we're all hapless idiots, the ones who complain,
anyway, right? We don't know what we're doing. We can't read
instructions. But some of us do. Who can tell? Who cares anyway?
It's all a huge mess. There have been many days I've wished I never got
into it this deep. But there are more days I assure myself that when I
have what I want, it is going to be better, slicker, and more satisfying
than I envisioned. And, it is going to be fast enough and brake hard
enough to scare even hearty souls.
I have learned a lot, true, and much of the reason I participate in this
newsgroup is to continue learning whatever I can, and sharing whatever I
can (not equal parts, obviously). It still doesn't piss me off any less
that the "expert" Mustang and classics shops have ****ed me over, or
that the "experts" in a given custom parts field have done the same.
I'm not exactly stupid, but no, I'm no engineer, and of course many of
my wrenching skills have been gained through messing up once or twice.
> As far as the magazines, yeah it would be nice if Mustang & Fords or
> Mustang Monthly would lower the boom on some of the crap out there.
Yes, and I'm sure the same can be said for all enthusiast mags. There
is effectively no accountability, so why care? Put together another
tech feature, mention/promote a few people you know (or know about) and
you've done your job. If the reader gets screwed, what are they going
to do? NOTHING. Feel stupid, and try again. I don't subscribe to them
any more. They don't deserve my money. My wife got me a gift
subscription, but honestly when this one arrives, I flip through it and
think, "so what bullshit are they peddling this month?"
> particular target would be Custom Autosound. Everything they make is
> junk, worse than the worst of 30 years ago. But you can wait till the
> sun cools for M&F or MM to tell the truth about Custom Autosound, and
> kiss goodbye their advertising dollars. As to that, see homily (a).
Right, I know what you're saying, and you're delicately telling me it's
too bad, but that's the way it is. I tend to have higher standards with
my work than half-truths, lies and trash. And I'm just incredibly
frustrated. And it's not just about the ****ing clutch, it's about
thing after thing after thing for years that I have had (and still have)
to re-do because of incompetence, malevolence, or apathy. Anything
anyone else has TOUCHED on this damned car, except the bodywork (which a
friend's father did) has been a freaking nightmare and cost three times
what it ever should have. There are very few exceptions.
And of course, I make mistakes, too. I guess the critical difference is
that I actually care. I care whether or not my wife and I go up in a
ball of flames, suddenly lose all brake pressure, break motor mounts,
snap a piston in half because the threaded rod for the air cleaner was
too short, snap clutch cables in traffic, or blow a diff. on the highway
because of bad seals. I am not exaggerating, and I could think of more
examples. This is not just about faulty parts. This is gross
incompetence, and booby traps. No, I didn't remove the ****ing threaded
rod to think, "could this thing, because it's actually too short, work
its way loose, go through the intake, hang a valve and break a piston in
half?" I checked these things to see that they were tight. Just 125
miles later, I was hearing my motor destroy itself, 125 miles yet to go
on a 95-degree day, and explaining what happened to my wife. When I
called the guy? "Not my ****ing problem, and if you claim an implied
warranty, I'll just countersue. Not like I haven't done it before." Click.
My neighbor is a 26-year veteran mechanic who has every certification in
the book, and trains newbies half his day. He swore and was ready to
call the highway patrol he was so mad after I said, "hey man, this
doesn't look right to me..." and he looked at it. "Discredits the whole
industry. This person should be in ****ing jail."
I was ignorant, so that's my fault. But my trust should not have been
betrayed time and again when I put it and my hard-earned money forth in
good faith. I don't know how these people sleep at night, raping
Shelbys for original parts and replacing them with garbage, rigging fuel
systems that could explode, and all the rest of their sleazy bullshit.
They should ALL be lined up and have Rusty Camshafts shoved deep, hard,
repeatedly, and without pre-lube right up their ****ing asses. And that
goes for those that knowingly promote these people also.