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dsc03643The informative Original Equipment Suppliers Aftermarket Association (OESAA) stand at this year’s Mechanex Sandown show proved a real talking point amongst attendees, as visitors seized upon the opportunity to thoroughly examine ‘like for like’ parts for themselves to really understand the OE difference.

The busy stand, staffed by representatives from a wide range of OESAA member companies, featured comparable components from OE and non-OE suppliers to highlight the dramatic differences in quality that can exist between the two, as well as the detrimental impact that fitting sub-standard parts can potentially have on a garage’s reputation.

Colin Mortiboys, Sales Manager at GKN for the UK and Ireland, explained the many differences between an OE approved GKN CV joint (originally fitted by Volkswagen) and a non-OE offering presented as an alternative.

“There are two different types of joint here,” said Colin. “Our joint actually goes to a 53 degree angle, whereas the competitor’s version only goes to 45 degrees, so if you used the non-OE alternative you wouldn’t get such a good turning circle.”

GKN’s CV joint also features a boot made from thermoplastic elastomer, designed to cope with high grease temperatures of up to around 150°C. The competitor component’s boot is made from a rubber compound, which can only tolerate grease temperatures of around 60°. The supplied clips are also clearly produced to completely different designs and material specifications.

“When you place the two items next to each other, they’re not even the same length – and yet they’re presented as ‘like for like’!” adds Colin.

The OESAA stand was jam-packed with similar comparison examples from the members of the association, and left visitors in no doubt as to the benefits associated with fitting high quality parts.

Jeff Earl, Marketing Manager at Schaeffler (UK) Ltd said: “The technicians coming to Mechanex are willing to take time away from the ramp to learn about new technology, so are also more likely to be fitting quality products already, but when they see examples like this it really helps to drive home our message.

“The main benefit of events such as this is that it gives visitors the chance to really get ‘inside’ the parts and see that the technology involved can be completely different. You simply cannot beat the trust and reassurance that comes with fitting quality parts from quality suppliers.”


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rsz_a3c6762d0870960b_800x800arGSF Car Parts have drawn the winners from their £2500 prize-draw giveaway following unprecedented interest at the recent Sandown Park trade show.

The promotion, which was heavily publicised by MECHANEX organisers in the run up to the show as a leading attraction, proved a real crowd-puller generating over 500 garage entries over the two day event on November 10 and 11.

The prize draw was supported by OE supplier Banner Batteries and Denmark-based remanufacturing specialists Elstock. Each supplier also delivered technical seminars on both days, updating garages on ‘profiting from batteries’ and ‘remanufacturing’s best-kept secrets.’

“The show was a big success,” said John Wright, Head of Garage Equipment & Customer Development. “MECHANEX gives us a real opportunity to show a large group of independent garages the full range of products and services we can offer to help them develop their businesses.”

The draw winners included Piers Thomson of PT Autocare, who gets a month’s supply of Vetech Professional DPF Cleaner, the patented non-flammable DPF cleaner which offers garages a profitable way to clear stubborn DPF blockages.

Other winners included Gary Finn, who benefits from £500 of rotating electrics courtesy of Elstock and Michael Solomon from G.M.S. Autopoint who wins a winter’s supply of Banner Batteries.

The £1000 main prize went to a delighted Steve Long of S.G. Vehicle Repairs, a 29 years established ‘all makes and models’ independent MoT garage.

When informed, Steve said: “What a brilliant way to start the day! We’re just across the road from your Southampton branch, so you’re preaching to the converted. GSF give us good service, fast delivery and we like the quality of the stuff we buy.”

Steve already has an idea in mind for the prize too. He aims to use it to help fund an upgrade to their diagnostics equipment. Having researched the options, he’d identified Launch, available from GSF’s Garage Essentials programme, as first preference.

GSF Car Parts extend their thanks to all stand visitors who took time to enter the competition.


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rsz_mex_retina_display_logoWebsite offers exclusive news and promotions for the show in Surrey on November 10 and 11.

MECHANEX, the regional trade show for auto repair professionals, is proud to announce the launch of a brand new website in the build-up to its flagship show at Sandown Park, Surrey.

The new site makes it even easier for visitors to see which of the automotive industry’s top suppliers, distributors and technical experts will be exhibiting, as well as being able to take advantage of some exclusive show offers.

The Sandown Park show takes place in Esher on November 10 and 11 and is free to the trade.

Richard Bowler, PMM Editor, said: “In the fast-changing world of automotive technology, skills and legislation, MECHANEX offers workshop technicians and proprietors the ideal opportunity to stay ‘ahead of the game.’

“With the cream of the aftermarket parts and equipment supply world in attendance, alongside an ever-increasing timetable of technical and business-related seminars and presentations – delivered by specialists in their fields – a visit to your nearest regional show is a must.”

Add to that the many opportunities to acquire vital training and technical knowledge as well as the chance to talk face-to-face with some of the aftermarket’s leading experts and forward thinking technicians have everything they need to help you stay competitive, all under one roof.

Visitors have the opportunity to take advantage of some excellent exhibitor promotions, including the chance to win £2000 worth of prizes courtesy of GSF.

Fortress Distribution will be debuting at the show and giving visitors 10% off their first order of Black Mamba Torque Grip Gloves.

The likes of Autodata, Quite Unlimited and Wood Auto will all have exclusive stand offers, while Chicago Pneumatic will be seeing if anyone can break the ‘Pit Stop Challenge’ record with prizes available for the best times.

The show is completely free to attend and tickets can be booked online, at, or by calling 0844 888 8339.


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