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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I live in Canada, and the savings on Aliexpress* are huge even compared to local discounters.
So a $220 Honda regulator might only be $130 buying from "Fortnine" here in Canada, (but it generally takes around 14 days to come in the mail) but Ali express is so ridiculously cheap by comparison - only $30...
The huge catch with Ali express is the shipping time though..
When I need a new regulator/ or stator/ or main fuse or whatever even waiting for my local supplier for 14 days would be quite hard
The other thing is I live on a small Island, and my cbr250r is my only vehicle..

So I thought for the sake of a few hundred bucks I might be better off buying parts in advance from Ali express.
Just to use a regulator as an example if I spent $200 buying say 8 parts from ali express, and I used one regulator it would pay for itself and maybe seven otherparts in just that one purchase...

SO.. (thank you for your patience up to now)
With that in mind, what parts would it be wise to buy in advance?
I'm not thinking about routine maintenance parts which I can plan ahead for like sprockets and chains, and clutch plates.

I'm thinking of parts that may break or fail and imobilise my vehicle or make it very hard to use..

Regulator?, stator? Clutch cable? fuel injector, fuel pump,
Does anyone have any ideas what it may be wise to have a stock of?
What items fail a lot?

Thank you in advance
 

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Does anyone have any ideas what it may be wise to have a stock of?
What items fail a lot?
Hi, and sorry. No, it's impossible to guess such a thing. If we all knew how to guess we would guess stocks on the stock market, then buy a new motorcycle, and replace it with a new one twice a year.

As someone who has been in DIY hobbies for decades I can tell you for sure, the hobby does not save money, it costs money like any other hobby:
  • The price of tools,
  • The price of learning (the price of my mistakes),
  • The price of time spent in repair (usually x4 according to a professional mechanic ),
  • And need a place in the garage so that it is possible to work comfortably (a place also costs money)
  • ... and of course we do not have a parts warehouse with fast delivery, and we do not have a partnership with near garage to lend us some expensive tools you will not buy because its use is rare ...
You can try to "smell" impending faults, then order parts in advance. When the fault has already stopped the motorcycle it is possible to complete parts with fast delivery, usually an addition of about 40USD fee, sometimes more. But it's a guess, and the chances of you buying the right parts in advance are very small.

Yes and it is possible to have fun and make for you a small parts warehouse from cheap and smart purchases on AliExpress, BUT if you do not assemble the part or test it on the spot, you lose the warranty and protection that AliExpress customers have. And many times it is difficult to check the part if it is not assembled into the motorcycle. I personally currently have such parts on the side, I ordered because I thought I should ... and I currently do not have to ... so I have an unplanned "warehouse". And I have parts I ordered for repair that is currently not urgent, so the parts are waiting on the side. It's my hobby.

Those who are short on time and can not afford the motorcycle to stand for repair for many days or weeks, do not own an very old motorcycle, a common model It's better. And they find them a good mechanic whom they trust with their closed eyes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Once again thank you. I think I will buy a regulator still just because the price difference is so large. - I have had one fail before on a gpz550. - again, have a great day
 

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I live in Canada, and the savings on Aliexpress* are huge even compared to local discounters.
So a $220 Honda regulator might only be $130 buying from "Fortnine" here in Canada, (but it generally takes around 14 days to come in the mail) but Ali express is so ridiculously cheap by comparison - only $30...
The huge catch with Ali express is the shipping time though..
When I need a new regulator/ or stator/ or main fuse or whatever even waiting for my local supplier for 14 days would be quite hard
The other thing is I live on a small Island, and my cbr250r is my only vehicle..

So I thought for the sake of a few hundred bucks I might be better off buying parts in advance from Ali express.
Just to use a regulator as an example if I spent $200 buying say 8 parts from ali express, and I used one regulator it would pay for itself and maybe seven otherparts in just that one purchase...

SO.. (thank you for your patience up to now)
With that in mind, what parts would it be wise to buy in advance?
I'm not thinking about routine maintenance parts which I can plan ahead for like sprockets and chains, and clutch plates.

I'm thinking of parts that may break or fail and imobilise my vehicle or make it very hard to use..

Regulator?, stator? Clutch cable? fuel injector, fuel pump,
Does anyone have any ideas what it may be wise to have a stock of?
What items fail a lot?

Thank you in advance
It's a Honda, parts usually don't fail without good reason.

Having said that, if you go the Chinese route, buy parts in pairs. They are cheap but they don't last very long. This will give you time to order again, use your spare, and wait several weeks to arrive. Really, you could buy one or two of everything but that's not practical or cost effective. I find that cosmetic parts are the best items to get from China... fairings, windscreen, levers, bar-ends, etc. Parts crucial to the function of your motorcycle, try to get OEM.

If you would like my opinion, save your money and buy a good quality factory part when you need it. Even used on Ebay is better than Chinese reproduction parts. The CBR250 is not particularly expensive. If you have the space, you could probably find an entire lightly wrecked bike to keep on hand for parts. I hear you on shipping time and not being able to have your only vehicle down waiting for repairs. It may be cost effective to have 2 vehicles rather than order a ton of parts you may never use. It is easier to sell a running vehicle than a bunch of parts that nobody needs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you very much for taking the time to reply. I knew Chinese parts were bad, but I didn't realise they were THAT bad..oh gosh.
What do you think about the quality of branded stuff (but made in China?)
I just bought some EBC clutch plates.
Once again - thanks
 

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That's funny you brought up the EBC clutch plates, I have a set of cheap Chinese ones sitting right here I was going to put on during my next oil change. I've been dreading putting them in because I don't know how good they will be. EBC is reputable, incorporated in England if I'm not mistaken.

There are a lot of YouTube videos of people trying to install Chinese regulators and stators, but they usually have to either cut to fit, modify, or fill in gaps with gobs of sealants to keep them from leaking. You can find some tear-down videos of failed components and they are taken apart and have found the wires too thin to handle the voltages or diodes and resistors clearly not the size of the parts in the OEM ones. I really don't know of any quality Chinese brands. I do know that I have never bought a Chinese part that lasted any appreciable amount of time. Reputable Companies that produce products in China can be pretty good. Sometimes they can be pretty bad.

Back to EBC. Yes, I think that's a top-shelf brand and you won't be disappointed. I think I paid about $30 for a set of Chinese clutch plates and I really regret not just getting the EBC ones. Anything requiring you to break open your engine case for should be of high quality and done once. I'll give you an update after I install them and let you know how bad (or good) they are.

Most of the time it's cheaper just to pay full price for something. I used to buy the cheapest things possible but rarely has it been a satisfying experience. I'm guessing your a young guy starting out in life. There are lots of things you will need to buy -pots 'n pans, furniture, clothes, vehicles, silverware, computers, microwave, toasters... My advice is to buy a few high quality items and buy them once, otherwise you will be buying cheap ones over and over again. It's advice I wish I was given when I was young.
 

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I find that cosmetic parts are the best items to get from China... fairings, windscreen, levers, bar-ends, etc. Parts crucial to the function of your motorcycle, try to get OEM.
I work with them a lot. It should be understood that some of the cheap price is related to the quality control department, the Chinese save on this issue. Therefore a certain percentage of the products arrive when it is defective. If you have good hands, sometimes you need to go over the item and fix it. In these cases it's like buying type B ( A new product from the factory with a small defect). In other cases you need to run the dispute resolution department and get a full credit, they are very effective there. It did not happen that I ordered two parts just to solve a reliability problem. It's happened me to pay a special shipping fee, so that it would arrive quickly, and still the part was cheap in half from an original part. Just recently I had to go through and fix the soldering irons in the 4 signals light I bought for my CBR250R.

The name of the game in general will be: Good value for money, when it is clear to everyone that for less money you get a lower value, and many times it is really worthwhile and profitable. This is the whole story of AliExpress, reasonable value, for a really low price, and reliable customer service to sort out disputes.

And it's not only spare parts, as a fan of DIY mechanics, the Chinese have also caused a complete revolution in the field of amateur mechanics special tools.
 

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What do you think about the quality of branded stuff (but made in China?)
I just bought some EBC clutch plates.
The truth is this: All the important patents are expired, all the knowledge for quality production, from quality materials, is knowledge that has become public domain. Brand value is constantly declining. All major brands today manufacture also in China, and the Chinese are one of the world's leading technological powers. Today the opposite happens, you can get for example EBC pads whose specifications exceed the same part which is OEM, and for less money.
 

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There are a lot of YouTube videos of people trying to install Chinese regulators and stators, but they usually have to either cut to fit,
YES "CUT TO FIT"
What's the problem with that? Answer: If the stator cost me a third of a price, where is the problem? After I fit it, it will hold me just like the original part. There is no hidden knowledge or patent here, everyone today produces stator from the same materials in the same methods, on the same machines. The Chinese save on quality control, save on other things, and reflect to me as a customer a fair price that takes into account all of these “shortcomings", where is the problem?

Or, for example, steering bearings, improved bearings with improved specifications, cost me less than original steering bearings.
 
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Here's my list:

  • tools, metric sockets, allen sockets, breaker bars, torque wrenchs, JIS screwdrivers
  • bike-stand F&R, chain tools, multimeter, chain cleaner, S100 bike cleaner
  • stator, RR, I recommend Shindengen SH775, if clone, fit and test before putting on shelf
  • Headlight, winker & tail bulbs
  • starter-solenoid and fuses
  • ignition coils, spark plugs & wires
  • spare sprockets & chains
  • head steering bearings, get roller-bearings for bottom, lasts forever
  • brake/clutch levers and cables, brake fluid & bleeder, front brake pads, heavy-duty clutch springs, handlebar grips
  • oil filtres and oil, air filtre
  • wheel bearings and seals, fork seals, fork oil
  • rearsets, foot-pegs, shift-rods

As for cost of parts, technology has improved since bikes were originally designed and built. Many aftermarket parts are better specs than OEM. I just replaced OEM starter-solenoid on my '86 VFR750F after 36-years. OEM Denso part costs $150, looks like any other starter-solenoid. I just tossed on cheapo Ali solenoid for $10. Have about 2-3 on shelf for various bikes. Buys me some time even if they only last 5-10yrs. Once every 10-yrs, I visit bike graveyard and harvest OEM Denso parts like relays, solenoids, coils, etc.
 

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It's not country of origin that matters, but QC specs desired by importer. U.S. importers like
Cycle Gear and others look for lowest cost parts possible to maximise profits. Vendors from China, Thailand, Japan will deliver what they want. I've gotten bad parts from Germany & Great Britian. Heck, lots of made-in-USA parts are crap like AC-Delco, Mintex, Aimco, etc.

Compare US-made Toyotas in 80-90s vs. Japanese-made. HUGE difference in parts and build-quality. AC-Delco alternators that die every 5-yrs vs Denso ones that last forever. Paint that peels off in 10-yrs vs lasts forever. Door & bonnet hinges installed so gaps vary from 2-10mm vs 5mm all around, etc. etc. etc.

I prefer to look at specs themselves rather than brand-name or origin. What material is used for parts, is it forged, stamped or cast? What is warranty and return-policy? That's where Ali stands out for vendor ratings and returns. Look at reviews and ratings, I prefer +97%. In end, it's my choice and I select high-quality specs. Such as electrical parts, I always make sure to get coated connectors and silicone-insulates wires. I even buy coated connectors and go around bike replacing original bare-brass connectors before they've had chance to corrode and cause me problems.


 

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Here's my list:

  • tools, metric sockets, allen sockets, breaker bars, torque wrenchs, JIS screwdrivers
  • bike-stand F&R, chain tools, multimeter, chain cleaner, S100 bike cleaner
  • stator, RR, I recommend Shindengen SH775, if clone, fit and test before putting on shelf
  • Headlight, winker & tail bulbs
  • starter-solenoid and fuses
  • ignition coils, spark plugs & wires
  • spare sprockets & chains
  • head steering bearings, get roller-bearings for bottom, lasts forever
  • brake/clutch levers and cables, brake fluid & bleeder, front brake pads, heavy-duty clutch springs, handlebar grips
  • oil filtres and oil, air filtre
  • wheel bearings and seals, fork seals, fork oil
  • rearsets, foot-pegs, shift-rods
A beautiful list, just saying that I created my personal "list" from project to project, because otherwise the list is endless, and everything I bought for my "warehouse" left to stand in the closet, and everything I bought because I thought "Soon I will need it" also stuck on the shelf, and only what I actually needed to fix A real problem, I really used it . And your list is interesting, because it's a list, and I do not know how to give Cortes such a list.

Danno nice that you highlighted the Japanese screwdriver set (JIS), I have been in Honda mechanic hobby for 12 years, and only in the last year I was informed that there is such a thing as Japanese screwdrivers, and only very recently have I purchased a nice set from Amazon.
And even when I already wanted to buy such a set, it turned out that it was not common in stores, and even now when I was looking for the link to the set I bought from Amazon, I see that the set ran out of stock (again?).

Sorry for the conspiratorial approach, someone probably makes a lot of money when we destroy our Japanese Heads Screw.
Product Musical instrument Font Screenshot Electronic device
 

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Yeah!! It's to make more business for mechanics when you strip all screw heads on your bike using Phillips screwdrivers!

JIS screwdrivers are getting more rare now that there is joint ISO/DIN standard. However, those new screwdrivers suck for both JIS and Phillips screws! Get genuine JIS whenever you can. I like screwdrivers with removeable tips. Can swap tips with different sizes to match screw. Also easy to replace when worn. I've got box with 100 JIS tips! :)

Japanese products are generally very high-quality due to consumers who demand that. This makes many of their products not sell very well in foreign markets. So many end up as domestic only products not sold elsewhere.
 
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