Planning and Choices
by T. Butler
If you are thinking about planning your next “out of frame” engine rebuild whether it is scheduled by engine hours or declining operating KPI’s, you will know there are some hurdles with managing the job and the downtime.
This is especially so for small owner operator operations if it’s their principle machine that is going to be pulled out of service without a back up machine
Other factors that need to be considered;
- Back up machine
- Parts availability
- Maintenance Plan
- Cost / budget
- Reliability of the repair
- Optimize planned downtime
Genuine Parts Availability
On the other hand things can go south pretty quickly if the machine fails prematurely and you find yourself battling to find the parts off the shelf to get your baby going again. Even If you shop around and end up getting bits and pieces from all over the country, what are the chances they are all going to be the correct parts?
In fact, as genuine engine rebuild parts are usually not supplied in kit form, there is always room for error during the ordering process. From a simple miscommunication by the owners representative or an inexperienced parts jock, recording an incorrect engine I.D. numbers or even a simple typo slip up can bring your planning undone. It is absolutely crucial that the engine number is used for the ordering of the rebuild parts as the machine serial number can have a variety of different engines fitted. Unless the correct engine serial number is provided to the guys over the counter the process will be flawed. Hmmm!
The difficulty of ordering individual parts for a rebuild is exacerbated considerably once your machine reaches 6 years old. An unfortunate milestone for your model as it also signals the time for dealers and distributors accordingly, to classify their parts inventory as retired stock to make room in their warehouse for the new model’s product support items.
Owner operators, sticklers for insisting on genuine rebuild parts, will usually find it too difficult to source the parts themselves and maybe obliged to seek out the dealer / reman center options for a rebuilt engine. Some of you may be surprised to know many of the dealers use or sell aftermarket rebuild kits themselves to keep up with parts for replacement engines. Demand far exceeds the manufacturer’s ability or commitment to supply parts for your machine after passing its 6th birthday… after all, their core business is selling new machines.
Depending on circumstances, owners may choose to continue with their early model machines, which is not an unreasonable or unmanageable choice by any means. Now with highly competitive priced aftermarket parts / components readily available keeping early model machines in service is no longer an issue.
Choices - Aftermarket Options
Accordingly, there is a wide variety of aftermarket engine rebuild kits in the marketplace to choose from that can provide:
- Correct parts
- Complete kits with all that is required
- Quality as good or better that OEM
- Significant savings over OEM
- Readily available
- warranty on parts
The challenge is, knowing which brands to buy as price is not always an indication of quality or reliability. Your dealer or mechanics from reputable repair shops can assist you with recommendations of suitable brand names suitable for your job.
Getting sound advice before you purchase is always better than taking a punt on the quality as the risk of a premature failure far outweighs the cost advantages of buying an unknown non genuine kit.
To assist you in the selection process we first need to be clear on the types of non genuine choices you have.
Aftermarket vs Genuine
Let me take a minute to refresh your understanding of the difference between category definitions when we refer to Aftermarket and Genuine articles, so we are all on the same page.
A Genuine part is the part that was originally put in your machine or auto when it was new. It comes in a box with the carmaker’s logo so you will think your car manufacturer made it. It was actually made by another company. These are the most expensive types of parts you can purchase mainly because you are paying for the logo.
Note: Variance of prices from genuine to aftermarket parts construction equipment range between 30% to 50%, depending on the item, e.g. engine kits – approx. 50%
OEM stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer. The company that originally made it for the car company built this part. It is the exact same part that came in your car. It simply doesn’t have the automaker’s logo on it. These are the exact same as genuine parts but are a much better value.
A company other than the original manufacturer makes aftermarket parts. These parts are made to fit and perform as well as, and in some cases better than the original. Aftermarket companies buy the rights to produce these parts. Even though some might have a slightly different look, they perform as well as, if not better than the OEM part and they are priced much less making them very good value.
With respect to engine kits, we stock and highly recommend our ETP (European Tractor Parts) line of engine products. They provide the end user with exceptional parts quality and reliability equal to or better than genuine manufacturer at well below genuine prices. We have been selling these kits around the globe for seven years without a problem or negative feedback.
We stock in our Spartanburg SC warehouse, ETP engine kits for Komatsu engines up to S6D 140.
Kits for Komatsu
- S6D 95
- S6D 102
- S6D 105
- S6D 125
- S6D 140
ETP engine rebuild kits come complete with a list of contents, each part individually identified with Komatsu part numbers.
Specialized Parts and Equipment LLC
An unplanned and unbudgeted engine or any major component failure can be a bad day especially if the parts you need are on a back order with dealer.
Our business caters for clients with Komatsu equipment or, dealers who require genuine quality parts that Komatsu cannot supply. In fact Komatsu dealers and distributors around the globe are our biggest customers of aftermarket components.
We import and sell our own brand, Specialized Replacement Parts (SRP) of quality aftermarket Komatsu components such as:
- Engine Rebuild Kits
- Hydraulic Pumps
- Oil coolers
- Cabs, doors, seats & glass
- Seal kits
- Crawler track adjusters
- Final drives,
- Pins and bushes
- Monitors & controllers
- Sheet metal & covers
In summary below are the key points for the pro’s and con’s are similar in most cases but not consistently so. They are:
- Less expensive: - generally a considerably cheaper but variable depending on brand, quality and supplier. If the part is well below the average price ask questions why before committing to purchase.
- Less OEM part availability: - Depending on equipment manufacture stock inventory of a particular model machine is made redundant (retired) after 5 - 6 years leaving in many cases aftermarket parts to fill the gap. Apart from that stock inventories in most industries are always kept to a minimum for better economics.
- Quality can be better than OEM: - You may be surprised to know that the quality may exceed OEM quality. Aftermarket companies have an advantage to rework out defects noted in well-documented fails in the field of the OEM part history. A few examples are radiators, pins and bushings, hydraulic seal kits, engine kits and track adjusters.
- Variable Quality: - Low quality materials and poor manufacturing processes the main cause. Always better to get some advice on low cost parts from mechanics or other suppliers first.
- Warranty conditions: - check there is warranty cover as some parts are sold without to keep costs low.
- Variety of brands: - some buyers may be intimidated by the amount of aftermarket brands to choose from. When in doubt check with online reviews and or seek advice from reputable independent repair shop outlets. You should also run it by your OEM dealer to and you may be surprised to know that they will often recommend or even sell a preferred aftermarket brand for your machine.
To know more, about the right aftermarket parts for your next maintenance shutdown, please don’t hesitate to call us Toll Free on (866) 754 3230. Alternatively, check out our search link to browse through our parts inventory.
We also invite you to take a peek at our YouTube channel and facebook page to learn more about us and our new aftermarket products lines.
Thank you for your interest and we really appreciate your business!