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  1. #151
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    This a tough biz. A B2C operation in the performance game is LUCKY to make an average of 20% profit on sales. I've been in the industry since 01 (mostly B2B) so I can speak with some authority. In the euro car world there are very few businesses grossing over 5m. Do the math - there isn't a ton of $$$ flying around - esp if you invest in equipment, facility, products, inventory, good people etc.

    You have big shops with big overhead and skill (like VAC, Turner, BW etc) and others with little to no overhead (like drop shippers who do stuff on the side) so it's a pretty whacky marketplace. A lot of consumers expect big shop service/confidence/skill and little shop prices. 'Shops' come and go, more in the BMW market than any other I have ever seen - its pretty brutal really.

    Example A: I start doing walnut blast jobs on N54s for 499. Dealers around here charge $750-900. We were the first shop to use the factory tools (you wouldn't believe how some of these jobs were butchered by other shops), we use factory trained BMW techs with top skill, offer the everyday VAC 'warranty', offer real business hours, 3 AutoLogics, 25 employees to assist, 7 figures in equipment etc. Local 'shops' starts dropping prices and the new 'market price' for this job is $350 - pioneered by the part time 'shops'. In the last year those shops closed up. Is $499 an unfair retail price?

    Example B: I recently had a local dude price shop me on a 335i AR DP install. I quoted our typical price ($250) but he wanted it for $150 ($75/hour) I politely said 'can't do it, but I will try to get closer on price -who is offering the job for $150?" I SWEAR TO GOD - he says VS Motorsports offered it via PM. VS is (was) in IL, we and this consumer are in PA.

    This mentality makes it hard for all legit shops in this market to do well or even survive. I'm sure it didn't help HPF.

    I'm all about getting a good deal, but when it comes to my homes, my cars and my bikes I ALWAYS go with the highest skilled shop or vendor who has a reasonable price point. Not cheap, reasonable. I sometimes pay a premium if I want the best possible work. When I have my Toyota tuned, it will go the best tuner on the East Coast and I will gladly pay whatever he wants. Also, I would NEVER buy parts from 4 online vendors and then call around to get the cheapest install on parts that were bought elsewhere. Imagine buying roofing material and asking for a 'best price installed'?

    Sorry for the rant, but now that some real numbers are out there people may realize that no one is getting rich in the BMW B2C game. I'm not complaining or looking for sympathy BTW, just calling it as it is. Vinny Ten released an interesting video (which was a bit whiny/overdone) but he is generally spot on. (I generally disagree with his age comments tho as my master at VAC is in his 20s and he knows more and has done more than just about any tech I have ever met)

    http://www.thatvideomagazine.com/new...nny-ten-racing

    As a fellow small business owner myself I am the same way.. I buy my parts from the shop who's going to install them, I do not price match. I pay for quality, I respect how hard it is especially in the aftermarket automotive performance industry. I have friends who have more than enough money to properly pay for good shops to do good work, and for quality parts.. yet I find them buying junk on Ebay and bringing it to the shops to install/etc. Makes me cringe.. have they no shame? Good on you Mike, Good on you. Click here to enlarge

  2. #152
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    Vinny Ten released an interesting video (which was a bit whiny/overdone) but he is generally spot on. (I generally disagree with his age comments tho as my master at VAC is in his 20s and he knows more and has done more than just about any tech I have ever met)

    http://www.thatvideomagazine.com/new...nny-ten-racing
    Agree with all you've said. Vinny Ten's vid is ok but he goes a bit too far to be honest...age like you said matters very little or how many lifts a shop's got...
    Click here to enlarge

  3. #153
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by dzenno@ProTUNING Freaks Click here to enlarge
    Agree with all you've said. Vinny Ten's vid is ok but he goes a bit too far to be honest...age like you said matters very little or how many lifts a shop's got...
    Yep, def too far but his core points stand. (he also mentions that there are some good young folks - but they are def the minority)

  4. #154
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    This a tough biz. A B2C operation in the performance game is LUCKY to make an average of 20% profit on sales. I've been in the industry since 01 (mostly B2B) so I can speak with some authority. In the euro car world there are very few businesses grossing over 5m. Do the math - there isn't a ton of $$$ flying around - esp if you invest in equipment, facility, products, inventory, good people etc.

    You have big shops with big overhead and skill (like VAC, Turner, BW etc) and others with little to no overhead (like drop shippers who do stuff on the side) so it's a pretty whacky marketplace. A lot of consumers expect big shop service/confidence/skill and little shop prices. 'Shops' come and go, more in the BMW market than any other I have ever seen - its pretty brutal really.

    Example A: I start doing walnut blast jobs on N54s for 499. Dealers around here charge $750-900. We were the first shop to use the factory tools (you wouldn't believe how some of these jobs were butchered by other shops), we use factory trained BMW techs with top skill, offer the everyday VAC 'warranty', offer real business hours, 3 AutoLogics, 25 employees to assist, 7 figures in equipment etc. Local 'shops' starts dropping prices and the new 'market price' for this job is $350 - pioneered by the part time 'shops'. In the last year those shops closed up. Is $499 an unfair retail price?

    Example B: I recently had a local dude price shop me on a 335i AR DP install. I quoted our typical price ($250) but he wanted it for $150 ($75/hour) I politely said 'can't do it, but I will try to get closer on price -who is offering the job for $150?" I SWEAR TO GOD - he says VS Motorsports offered it via PM. VS is (was) in IL, we and this consumer are in PA.

    This mentality makes it hard for all legit shops in this market to do well or even survive. I'm sure it didn't help HPF.

    I'm all about getting a good deal, but when it comes to my homes, my cars and my bikes I ALWAYS go with the highest skilled shop or vendor who has a reasonable price point. Not cheap, reasonable. I sometimes pay a premium if I want the best possible work. When I have my Toyota tuned, it will go the best tuner on the East Coast and I will gladly pay whatever he wants. Also, I would NEVER buy parts from 4 online vendors and then call around to get the cheapest install on parts that were bought elsewhere. Imagine buying roofing material and asking for a 'best price installed'?

    Sorry for the rant, but now that some real numbers are out there people may realize that no one is getting rich in the BMW B2C game. I'm not complaining or looking for sympathy BTW, just calling it as it is. Vinny Ten released an interesting video (which was a bit whiny/overdone) but he is generally spot on. (I generally disagree with his age comments tho as my master at VAC is in his 20s and he knows more and has done more than just about any tech I have ever met)

    http://www.thatvideomagazine.com/new...nny-ten-racing
    Well said Mike, we have never been the cheapest but we have always had repeat customers because our work was top notch. My dad always taught me to choose your customers wisely, if someone comes in for a $200 job and is giving you a hard time, just politely refuse the job, he said your sanity isn't worth $200 bucks. I use those lessons today and try to do things right even if it costs more. Perfect example, phone rings at the shop this am around 6:30 am. I am there doing stuff. I decide to answer. Guy has questions on stage 3, I know there is no dumb question, but dumb questions. Finally I say hey man well if you are interested we are about 6 months out you can pre-order on the website, he then says 6 months, why are you so slow, 6:30 am not in a good mood now. Im like thats just what it takes to put 15 kits together the right way, he is like ok, well how much is it. I say $8000, the guy literally says holy $#@! you are a $#@!ing douchebag to charge that much. I just hung up, he called back twice I didn't answer. Its not $200 but my sanity isn't even worth 8 grand, the adage still holds true, good work isn't cheap and cheap work isn't good. Everything I have read about VAC speaks of quality, thats why I am happy to be working with you guys on some stuff. Thanks for posting this.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    BMS investment product line has nowhere near the complexity or investment as an E46 M3 turbo kit setup with built motor options. Piggyback versus $30k+ setup? Come on.
    30k+ is their set price, not the true value of the kit. The true value is probably 10 times lower.

  6. #156
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    WTF only 38 mo taking it up the ass!!! they should of given him 5 yrs. and he would come come like a SHE!!! Unfortunately our friend got burnt with his insurance appraiser, with the magnitude and scope of this industry you must have a better insurance than 25k WTF Chris! Im sad this has happened to you, on the other hand it might be a sign of worst things yet to come in our BIMMER World with the sofistications, I got my car yesterday and the car 2 sensors gone bad, not to speak of the other 4 its has in the exhaust system!! Chris good luck in your next venture I pray you can reopen with a different name and REMEMBER a Friend is a dollar in your pocket hence, assure your pocket doesnt have a hole either!!!

  7. #157
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    I forgot to mention Im with you guys in repsects to pay for the best product for our cars, and people BIATCH at me because I use and mention RENNtech all the time, I hv used their products for over 10 yrs and never let me down, yes they are EXPENSIVE, but, neither are our cars also!!!

  8. #158
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by cstavaru Click here to enlarge
    30k+ is their set price, not the true value of the kit. The true value is probably 10 times lower.
    Really, you are saying a fully built motor and turbo kit's true value is 3+ grand?
    Last edited by Tony@VargasTurboTech; 05-08-2013 at 09:34 AM.

  9. #159
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    This a tough biz. A B2C operation in the performance game is LUCKY to make an average of 20% profit on sales. I've been in the industry since 01 (mostly B2B) so I can speak with some authority. In the euro car world there are very few businesses grossing over 5m. Do the math - there isn't a ton of $$$ flying around - esp if you invest in equipment, facility, products, inventory, good people etc.

    You have big shops with big overhead and skill (like VAC, Turner, BW etc) and others with little to no overhead (like drop shippers who do stuff on the side) so it's a pretty whacky marketplace. A lot of consumers expect big shop service/confidence/skill and little shop prices. 'Shops' come and go, more in the BMW market than any other I have ever seen - its pretty brutal really.

    Example A: I start doing walnut blast jobs on N54s for 499. Dealers around here charge $750-900. We were the first shop to use the factory tools (you wouldn't believe how some of these jobs were butchered by other shops), we use factory trained BMW techs with top skill, offer the everyday VAC 'warranty', offer real business hours, 3 AutoLogics, 25 employees to assist, 7 figures in equipment etc. Local 'shops' starts dropping prices and the new 'market price' for this job is $350 - pioneered by the part time 'shops'. In the last year those shops closed up. Is $499 an unfair retail price?

    Example B: I recently had a local dude price shop me on a 335i AR DP install. I quoted our typical price ($250) but he wanted it for $150 ($75/hour) I politely said 'can't do it, but I will try to get closer on price -who is offering the job for $150?" I SWEAR TO GOD - he says VS Motorsports offered it via PM. VS is (was) in IL, we and this consumer are in PA.

    This mentality makes it hard for all legit shops in this market to do well or even survive. I'm sure it didn't help HPF.

    I'm all about getting a good deal, but when it comes to my homes, my cars and my bikes I ALWAYS go with the highest skilled shop or vendor who has a reasonable price point. Not cheap, reasonable. I sometimes pay a premium if I want the best possible work. When I have my Toyota tuned, it will go the best tuner on the East Coast and I will gladly pay whatever he wants. Also, I would NEVER buy parts from 4 online vendors and then call around to get the cheapest install on parts that were bought elsewhere. Imagine buying roofing material and asking for a 'best price installed'?

    Sorry for the rant, but now that some real numbers are out there people may realize that no one is getting rich in the BMW B2C game. I'm not complaining or looking for sympathy BTW, just calling it as it is. Vinny Ten released an interesting video (which was a bit whiny/overdone) but he is generally spot on. (I generally disagree with his age comments tho as my master at VAC is in his 20s and he knows more and has done more than just about any tech I have ever met)

    http://www.thatvideomagazine.com/new...nny-ten-racing
    Thanks for your insight Mike. Although just a small customer for VAC, I have spent many thousands with you guys and never let down. From your S54 pulley set, Schrick 288/280 cams + DLC followers, and the bored out ITBs. Steve B. has always taken care of me - even after the email hacking you experienced earlier this year.

    Some of the parts could have been had for cheaper, but I would rather deal with VAC in case something doesn't work out.

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    I know HPF's revenue came mostly from their online business. And not that there's anything wrong with that, but they weren't very good at advertising that side of their company.

    All you ever heard of was cars coming into the shop for builds. I realize that is the cool part of HPF but they should have put themselves more out there with the parts business too. Many around here didn't even realize they could order stuff from HPF.

    I'm not saying that's why the business failed, but I think it adds to a growing list of small issues that can eventually topple a small business.

  11. #161
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    Mike hit the nail on the head, unfortunately it's happening with all kinds of business's.

    People think they can get the bottom dollar price and top quality, it may be technology that is part of the blame.
    I'm in business with my father and uncle, we sell/distribute Deisel engines for marine applications, gensets, on highway trucks/buses, have Allison transmission distributorships and also own Freightliner truck dealerships. We've been in business over 80 years with highly skilled and factory trained technicians. We get price shopped by local customers all the time, against shops with 3 mechanics and no overhead....people that have no factory software and don't have the right tools. We can't live on low labor rates like those shops. You pay for a certain service. We have people pricing out trucks in Florida and asking us to match the pricing....it's never ending.

    I don't ever mind paying for quality bc I live it everyday and make a living off it, shops like VAC are the only ones I want to go to, not some guy in his backyard doing DP installs....

    I think HPF had a lot of issues that caused them to go down, but this scheme by a high level employee was probably to much to swallow.
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    I'm all about getting a good deal, but when it comes to my homes, my cars and my bikes I ALWAYS go with the highest skilled shop or vendor who has a reasonable price point. Not cheap, reasonable.
    I routinely forget this.. and end up spending 4 hrs to grind down brake calipers or other things costing me more in the long run........

    Well said Mike

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by cstavaru Click here to enlarge
    30k+ is their set price, not the true value of the kit. The true value is probably 10 times lower.
    Not including having to get the AEM, install, warranty, etc.

    I mean are you really comparing piggyback cost to full built motor S54 turbo setups?

  14. #164
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    This a tough biz. A B2C operation in the performance game is LUCKY to make an average of 20% profit on sales. I've been in the industry since 01 (mostly B2B) so I can speak with some authority. In the euro car world there are very few businesses grossing over 5m. Do the math - there isn't a ton of $$$ flying around - esp if you invest in equipment, facility, products, inventory, good people etc.

    You have big shops with big overhead and skill (like VAC, Turner, BW etc) and others with little to no overhead (like drop shippers who do stuff on the side) so it's a pretty whacky marketplace. A lot of consumers expect big shop service/confidence/skill and little shop prices. 'Shops' come and go, more in the BMW market than any other I have ever seen - its pretty brutal really.

    Example A: I start doing walnut blast jobs on N54s for 499. Dealers around here charge $750-900. We were the first shop to use the factory tools (you wouldn't believe how some of these jobs were butchered by other shops), we use factory trained BMW techs with top skill, offer the everyday VAC 'warranty', offer real business hours, 3 AutoLogics, 25 employees to assist, 7 figures in equipment etc. Local 'shops' starts dropping prices and the new 'market price' for this job is $350 - pioneered by the part time 'shops'. In the last year those shops closed up. Is $499 an unfair retail price?

    Example B: I recently had a local dude price shop me on a 335i AR DP install. I quoted our typical price ($250) but he wanted it for $150 ($75/hour) I politely said 'can't do it, but I will try to get closer on price -who is offering the job for $150?" I SWEAR TO GOD - he says VS Motorsports offered it via PM. VS is (was) in IL, we and this consumer are in PA.

    This mentality makes it hard for all legit shops in this market to do well or even survive. I'm sure it didn't help HPF.

    I'm all about getting a good deal, but when it comes to my homes, my cars and my bikes I ALWAYS go with the highest skilled shop or vendor who has a reasonable price point. Not cheap, reasonable. I sometimes pay a premium if I want the best possible work. When I have my Toyota tuned, it will go the best tuner on the East Coast and I will gladly pay whatever he wants. Also, I would NEVER buy parts from 4 online vendors and then call around to get the cheapest install on parts that were bought elsewhere. Imagine buying roofing material and asking for a 'best price installed'?

    Sorry for the rant, but now that some real numbers are out there people may realize that no one is getting rich in the BMW B2C game. I'm not complaining or looking for sympathy BTW, just calling it as it is. Vinny Ten released an interesting video (which was a bit whiny/overdone) but he is generally spot on. (I generally disagree with his age comments tho as my master at VAC is in his 20s and he knows more and has done more than just about any tech I have ever met)

    http://www.thatvideomagazine.com/new...nny-ten-racing
    I agree with everything you said, except for the Vinny Ten part.

    I won't go into reasons why in this thread, but I am friends with so many people that will never go back there. That guy is the last person on earth that should be giving out business advice.
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    Ask me anything you want...

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HPF 335i Click here to enlarge
    Ask me anything you want...
    Is anyone going to challenge the Miami Heat this year or is a back to back championship unstoppable?

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Sticky Click here to enlarge
    Is anyone going to challenge the Miami Heat this year or is a back to back championship unstoppable?
    Heat to the finish, Next question...

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    Im going to Jag Office. Ill be back in a bit.

    But just real quick...

    1. Yes im deployed right now
    2. No i didnt have to pay for shipping (ever)
    3. there is a $#@! ton to this story and ive been jacked around for the last 3.7 years looking for an exit/results. its not as easy as you might ponder.
    4. No i dont have my car its locked up in the shop and i cant get to it...
    5. ill be back in 2 hrs or so. Click here to enlarge

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HPF 335i Click here to enlarge
    Im going to Jag Office. Ill be back in a bit.

    But just real quick...

    1. Yes im deployed right now
    2. No i didnt have to pay for shipping (ever)
    3. there is a $#@! ton to this story and ive been jacked around for the last 3.7 years looking for an exit/results. its not as easy as you might ponder.
    4. No i dont have my car its locked up in the shop and i cant get to it...
    5. ill be back in 2 hrs or so. Click here to enlarge
    Sorry to hear man I can kind of relate.

    You can't get to your car? No shipping arranged? $#@! man... I feel for you.

  20. #170
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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HPF 335i Click here to enlarge
    Im going to Jag Office. Ill be back in a bit.

    But just real quick...

    1. Yes im deployed right now
    2. No i didnt have to pay for shipping (ever)
    3. there is a $#@! ton to this story and ive been jacked around for the last 3.7 years looking for an exit/results. its not as easy as you might ponder.
    4. No i dont have my car its locked up in the shop and i cant get to it...
    5. ill be back in 2 hrs or so. Click here to enlarge
    Wow what a nightmare, I'd put it back to stock and sell it at this point. Once you get it back of course.
    Click here to enlarge
    ESS 6XX kit

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HPF 335i Click here to enlarge
    Im going to Jag Office. Ill be back in a bit.
    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by HPF 335i Click here to enlarge

    But just real quick...

    1. Yes im deployed right now
    2. No i didnt have to pay for shipping (ever)
    3. there is a $#@! ton to this story and ive been jacked around for the last 3.7 years looking for an exit/results. its not as easy as you might ponder.
    4. No i dont have my car its locked up in the shop and i cant get to it...
    5. ill be back in 2 hrs or so. Click here to enlarge


    interesting, please elaborate when you get a chance

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by folgrz Click here to enlarge
    I agree with everything you said, except for the Vinny Ten part.

    I won't go into reasons why in this thread, but I am friends with so many people that will never go back there. That guy is the last person on earth that should be giving out business advice.
    Whether he is good or not does not matter to me - his point generally stands. I see your point tho, if he is really a turd it's hard to be taken seriously. The only thing I know about him is that he was a pioneer of import drag racing and built the fastest cars for a while. Things can change

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    I don't understand why Chris didnt park all the customer cars outside of the shop the morning or day before the court case. Hindsight is 20/20 but it would have avoided the incoming $#@! storm. I wish everyone a speedy resolution in getting their car back, I'm sure hpf335i#1 isn't the only one whose car is being held hostage.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by bmw335iguy Click here to enlarge
    I don't understand why Chris didnt park all the customer cars outside of the shop the morning or day before the court case. Hindsight is 20/20 but it would have avoided the incoming $#@! storm. I wish everyone a speedy resolution in getting their car back, I'm sure hpf335i#1 isn't the only one whose car is being held hostage.
    He must have been convinced he would win in court and decided not to bother parking the cars outside ''just in case''.

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    Click here to enlarge Originally Posted by Mike@VAC Click here to enlarge
    Whether he is good or not does not matter to me - his point generally stands. I see your point tho, if he is really a turd it's hard to be taken seriously. The only thing I know about him is that he was a pioneer of import drag racing and built the fastest cars for a while. Things can change
    I agree, you can't take his records away from him, he was great at what he did a kudos. But like you said, it's VERY HARD to take him seriously when I've seen him screw a ton of my friends over... I'm glad I'm out of the nissan tuner world sheesh
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