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The dismantler with no cars

Partspeed parts from a vehicle
Everything stripped and ready for uploading to the net - everything else goes straight to scrap.
The last time we mentioned Partspeed was back in 2011 when John Goodliffe gave us his alternative views on how to run a profitable auto recycling business in the 21st century- see the article here. Those views have now been put into practice and it may be worth your while taking a closer look.

So what’s so different? South Wales based, Partspeed has developed a business model for vehicle dismantling that makes it more akin to a manufacturing process than auto recycling. Or as Director John Goodliffe put it, “what we are doing is reverse manufacturing. Usually you take a number of components and put them together to make a product. As with other dismantlers we do the opposite, but we control the disassembly process so we maximise our efficiencies and our returns per vehicle.

So what are they doing? Partspeed operate out of what was previously an aerospace engineering factory and their whole dismantling process is closely controlled.

At this point it’s worth mentioning that automation is key to their business with sales predominantly going through the internet. That means that the bulk of sales and paperwork are generated without input from staff. They use facilities on their auto recycling software to ensure they only stock what’s saleable and moves relatively quickly. There is no sense of urgency in this environment yet they sell in the region of 10% of all stock each week. Director, David Goodliffe said, “our business is designed to sell parts not collect parts on a shelf or cars in a yard. We have a conventional yard in Cardiff but here we have taken apart the role of a used parts supplier and rebuilt it without the historical baggage of the industry.”

David talked me through the process. Once a vehicle comes in (or is cleared by the insurance), they carry out a visual check and use software to diagnose any damaged parts on the vehicle. From this information and existing stock details, the picking list is created.

Where manufacturers’ electronic referencing prevents parts from one vehicle working on another, they use a system known as ‘virginising’ to return the components back to their unused condition, allowing onward fitment.

Then comes depollution which we have covered many times before. After this, the car is placed in a dismantling bay with a set of tags (laid out in relative car position) for all parts to be removed. During all processes parts are checked and rechecked for quality. David said, “anyone involved has the power to reject a part from the initial pre-check through to despatch. Sending out faulty or damaged parts will not only cost but also damage our reputation which our business depends on”.

Once stripped the hulk is sent to scrap and the parts placed in holding area. Apart from the hulk, two bins are used, one for metallic scrap and one for non metallics.

From this point, all parts are photographed, sent to their stores locations and uploaded to ebay. John stressed, “when a part is offered for sale it is already on the rack and ready to go. When the orders are received by the packers, who will again check the part for quality, the system also offers an alternative if available, just in case the packer detects an issue with the original part. Everything is designed for minimum fuss and minimum effort to achieve the result”.

This whole process takes place in what is basically a production flowline. All that is left at the end of the line is a stack of tagged, saleable parts and the waste materials. Nothing is left at the site to take space. They don’t keep anything that isn’t a fast moving item as it only costs money and takes space.

The next stage Partspeed are now developing corporate markets to supply. These include the larger car dealerships and fleet operators. “Everything we do is to specification and part numbers and that’s what the corporate arena require from a green parts supplier. We, as an individual company are not large enough to supply many of these markets and we are currently developing a system of accreditation that will allow us to work with other like minded dismantlers to satisfy this demand”, said David.

If this market interests you and feel your operation could work to high standards in areas of quality control, returns policies, delivery schedules etc, then you can email David Goodliffe if you would like to know more.

October 2013

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