Well, with NINE newly refurbished 600 800 Alloy Wheels to have their tyres put back and rebalanced, I toured the local Tyre Suppliers and Fitters. Visited seven in all and the first place I tried, who fitted new tyres to our Rover 25s a few months ago at a very competitive price, wanted £15 to refit the tyre and balance EACH wheel! Next place I tried who fitted my new UNIROYAL RAINSPORTS also wanted £15 per wheel... is a cartel going on here. I wonder, three dealers all wanted £15 per wheel! Next place wanted £10 per wheel. Still too much. Charging five or six quid for a valve which I can buy off ebay for less than 50 pence! He also mentioned that he has to cover himself for repairs should a wheel get scratched ...
... If that is so, how come so many fit those poxy rim clip balance weights which always scratch the protective paint surface when they hammer them on. Next place wanted £6.50p per wheel if I fitted the valves ...
. A tenner if they did.
They had a near empty workshop so could do them straight away. Puzzling when there are staff sitting about doing nowt. I was tempted.
So, I'm now thinking I might do them myself as I used to do many moons ago. Finally, as I planned, tried the place who removed all NINE tyres for me free of charge! As I drove up there was only one car in any of the six work bays. A Trophy Blue MG TF having the rear brakes done. I'm a regular customer to this friendly outfit. They would do them for fifty quid the nine. DEAL!
I already had the five OE 620ti wheels and their tyres in the Rover 25 I was using so leave them and collect in an hour. Back an hour later with the four Vitesse wheels and their tyres. They had made a good job of the first batch of five ... no signs of scratches. That's more like it. Took the five away and called back and hour later and the remaining four all done nicely.
OK so I spent the best part of an hour shopping round. But with a difference of £85 between those first quotes and the final one was well worth it. I doubt paying those first quotes of £135 I would have got a better caring job on those nine wheels. In fact the attitude of the folks there I would bet money I wouldn't have a better job.
As always, it pays to invest a little time shopping around.
Just as the weak Sun disappeared behind the nearby Hills, I fitted the four 620ti wheels to the White Gold project car late afternoon. Looks much better than the steel spare wheels on the car whilst the originals were being refurbished.