Citroen Ebay traders from France... thoughts?
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  1. #1
    Ashtray Polisher donat's Avatar
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    Icon3 Citroen Ebay traders from France... thoughts?

    I often see Ebay users like Sylvain and Stephane Djokovic selling an interesting range of NOS or reproductions and I was wondering what the quality of goods are like, if they're worth dealing with and if their postage prices are honest.

    Any feedback either sent privately or publicly would be most appreciated.

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    Chasing some driveshaft bits.

    Cheers.
    1972 SM
    1989 BX 16 Valve

  2. #2
    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    I think Gerry Freed had to put a rocket up Sylvain once, to sort out an Aussie buyer. There's been enough mutterings over time, to put me off - seen his feedback?

    Of Djokovic I heard bad press from one member here, but it was more about the attitude than the goods. He does seem to have the repro stuff at good prices, eh?

    Wouldn't discount the Brownhills (not sure what they are called here, now - onlyfrogcars? CitroŽn Classics, based in UK; seem to have good connections on bits. Richo recommends them, too.

  3. #3
    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    I've bought from Sylvain.
    All communications in French, use Google Translator. Respect the mans native language.
    Bought a couple of NOS parts which I lusted after for ages.
    Delivered as described, no problems. Even scored a free print.
    Provided you make the effort; recommended.

    Stephane Djokovic

    Bought from him a couple of times over the past few years.
    Disappointed with anything used, condition not as pictured or described dubiously.
    Faffed about with postage, excessive charges.
    Can't recommend.

    Postage from France can be expensive, depending on the type of package and the method.
    If buying from ebay the seller has to protect themselves, so they choose the expensive option.

    Negotiating off eBay can be better, (though not with the above mentioned sellers) with some sellers of parts prepared to send via economical if slower and less secure methods, you get what you pay for.

    Darrin Brownhill of Citroen Classics with his part time offsider Rick (if speaking on the phone) are brilliant, fair, honest, cheap and have far more than the ebay sellers.
    I've spent thoosands of poonds with Darrin and he doesn't do eBay.

    Probably the best bloke I've never met.
    Last edited by richo; 24th October 2012 at 12:38 AM.

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    mnm
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    I've had the pleasure to meet Darrin, Rick and Paul of Citroen Classics at their garage on several occasions, due to my job. I have bought a lot of stuff from him off his website and had it sent via airmail. Very reliable, helpful and informative. I thoroughly recommend them.

    I have also purchased several items from Sylvane, Stephane and Christophe.. all goods have arrived safely and been shipped speedily once paid for. I also communicate with them in French, via Google translate. A lot of the repro items they sell are cheaper from people like Darrin and Der Franzose, so I always check first. As for the used stuff, if I really want it I pay the price... but that's me and my obsession.

    Matthew

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    Ashtray Polisher donat's Avatar
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    I have bought from Darrin before at Citroen Classics in the UK for the ID - rapid postage and communication alike. I should pop him a line, he might have what I'm chasing. Tried Brodie Engineering a week ago and they've not replied to my email. Have emailed Andrew himself (I know he's long since sold off his company) and I hope to get a reply there.

    Richo, your comments have kinda echoed my thoughts about dealing with those particular Frenchmen. I always communicate in their native language and you're right, it's respectful.

    I definitely don't need spheres for the SM - my Reco-Spheres are absolutely amazing!

    I had a little incident on the road where the LHS driveshaft somehow got loose and spat out my triaxe bearings. I haven't been able to assess the full extent of the damage as yet, but I saw Sylvain was offering a pair of complete driveshafts and I thought that might be the way to go. Which ever way it pans out, I'm sure I'm going to need to source parts from OS.

    Thanks for your input Richo and Addo.
    1972 SM
    1989 BX 16 Valve

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    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    Darrin Does D's.

    Spares for the others (SM and GS) not really his bag, unless they overlap.
    SM bits best from the US. Plentiful by comparison with UK and Europe.

    richo

    PS. Now I know which SM you have bought. Re the spheres; I do my best.

  7. #7
    Ashtray Polisher donat's Avatar
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    I've quizzed Darrin about GS bits, and yeah - they're not his thing. Daniel Engelhardt is the one-stop GS supplier and what he doesn't have doesn't exist. His website is also quite comprehensive once you start digging in through the various sections - many parts suppliers should take a leaf out of his book. Postage out of Germany is quite reasonable, too.

    Have looked at Western Hemispheres in the US and they seem to have an interesting selection of bits and bobs. Speaking of the US, I'm sure Area 52 will uncover some interesting trinkets for us all (or is it just for the locals?).
    1972 SM
    1989 BX 16 Valve

  8. #8
    1000+ Posts gerry freed's Avatar
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    For GS parts it is hard to go past
    http://www.chevronics.co.uk/Citroen_...pare_Parts.php
    They are not cheap but then I don't want cheap when I am looking after a classic car. With the parts comes an impressive depth of knowledge of the GS with all its variants and sound advice.
    HYspares - Jeff Winterman although in France is Welsh and is easy to deal with.
    Depanoto is gold standard and can manage English.
    It is getting hard to buy from French advertisers as there are some many frauds coming from overseas, sellers have become extremely wary, especially if the French is not perfect. As Australia is an exotic land far away, the first thought seems to be that the request is another scam. It is probaly unfair on some serious vendors but I would suggest that you will get better results buying from the UK, Germany or Holland and in English.
    Think Global - Ride on Spheres

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    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    On a related but slightly different tangent.
    If you are ordering parts from far away and using the postal service I've found this site invaluable for EMS postage from a host of countries.

    http://www.track-trace.com/post

    Currently I'm tracking stuff from Riga, Latvia. No problem and the site generally does things in English. A couple of weeks ago it was Turkey, not easy, but workable.

    The Australia Post site which purports to be able to track items from and to Australia is woefully inadequate and out of date with real time events.
    The USPS item tracking site is better for tracking packages from Australia to the USA as well as USA to Australia.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by richo; 24th October 2012 at 06:09 PM.

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    mnm
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    Quote Originally Posted by richo View Post
    On a related but slightly different tangent.
    If you are ordering parts from far away and using the postal service I've found this site invaluable for EMS postage from a host of countries.

    http://www.track-trace.com/post

    Currently I tracking stuff from Riga, Latvia. No problem and the site generally does things in English. A couple of weeks ago it was Turkey, not easy, but workable.

    The Australia post site which purports to be able to track items from and to Australia is woefully inadequate and out of date with events.
    The US PS item tracking site is better for tracking packages from Australia to the USA as well as USA to Australia.

    Hope this helps.
    Excellent! I just tested it with a tracking number from a French seller.. it worked, identified the service and that the item had been delivered on the 16th. Thanks Richo.. have bookmarked that one.

    Matthew

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    Fellow Frogger! ds21bvh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by richo View Post
    I've bought from Sylvain.
    Darrin Brownhill of Citroen Classics with his part time offsider Rick (if speaking on the phone) are brilliant, fair, honest, cheap and have far more than the ebay sellers.
    I've spent thoosands of poonds with Darrin and he doesn't do eBay.

    Probably the best bloke I've never met.
    Another plug for Darrin - A++ rating AFAIC - very helpful, efficient, reasonably priced and is generous with the knowledge that only comes from working on DS's day in and day out. Cannot say enough good things about this bloke. The big difference here is when you buy from Darrin you know it works and the quality is acceptable.

    Geert at Citroworld is excellent as well. Fast responsive and helpful.

    I recently bought through Ebay (thanks Michael) some monograms for the c-pillars from a French seller. When I ordered them I did so with the expectation that they may not turn up.... cest la vie...

    All the best,

    Mark....
    Last edited by ds21bvh; 24th October 2012 at 03:06 PM.

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    1000+ Posts michaelr's Avatar
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    Don't forget to try the local dealers too. For instance I have always been amazed by the stock Roger Parker has in Adelaide and the more than fair prices. Generally next day service too if needed by Australia Post!

    http://oleopneumatics.com.au/
    Michael
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    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by michaelr View Post
    Don't forget to try the local dealers too. For instance I have always been amazed by the stock Roger Parker has in Adelaide and the more than fair prices. Generally next day service too if needed by Australia Post!

    http://oleopneumatics.com.au/
    My personal experience with local suppliers has been tortuous at best. Local for me means north to Australia, not a shop I can call in at personally, there isn't one.
    Wrong parts, waited 4 months to receive a "rebuilt" sphere without gas, prices twice that of overseas including freight, incorrectly shipped parts, another wait of 8 months in one instance, not accepting credit cards (what century are they doing business in for crying out loud) or PayPal.

    Sorry, my business is with overseas suppliers.

    Said by a bloke who has a "local" hobby business, giving 100% effort all the time, trying to provide a service and product better than anyone else offers, anywhere.

    Apologies for going off topic.
    Last edited by richo; 25th October 2012 at 01:44 PM.

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    Ashtray Polisher donat's Avatar
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    Driveshaft bits & bobs were on the shelf at DS Motors. That solves my crisis, and I'm back on the road again. I usually only get parts they don't have in stock as I like to show appreciation for local businesses where I can. If I have to pay a little more, so be it. Sometimes you can't wait around for parts when things need to be done tout suite. Having a car in bits for months on end would probably kill me. I like to drive my cars, and not just look at them (even though they're all quite pretty).

    If I lived in Melbourne, I'd be DIY all the way as I'd have no other choice in the matter. Don't mean to offend anyone by saying that, but it's just from my own personal experiences with cars over the years.

    This has proved to be quite a resourceful thread. Another validation of the brilliance of AF and its posters.
    1972 SM
    1989 BX 16 Valve

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    Forget the French simply not interested in people outside France. For D and GS parts nothing beats these guys. Perfect in english, prices, stock and delivery spot on. http://www.citroen-andre.com/

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    1000+ Posts gerrypro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by richo View Post
    I've bought from Sylvain.
    All communications in French, use Google Translator. Respect the mans native language.
    Bought a couple of NOS parts which I lusted after for ages.
    Delivered as described, no problems. Even scored a free print.
    Provided you make the effort; recommended.

    Pity there does not seem to be a parts category for TAs in his site.

    Stephane Djokovic

    Bought from him a couple of times over the past few years.
    Disappointed with anything used, condition not as pictured or described dubiously.
    Faffed about with postage, excessive charges.
    Can't recommend.

    Postage from France can be expensive, depending on the type of package and the method.
    If buying from ebay the seller has to protect themselves, so they choose the expensive option.

    Negotiating off eBay can be better, (though not with the above mentioned sellers) with some sellers of parts prepared to send via economical if slower and less secure methods, you get what you pay for.

    Darrin Brownhill of Citroen Classics with his part time offsider Rick (if speaking on the phone) are brilliant, fair, honest, cheap and have far more than the ebay sellers.
    I've spent thoosands of poonds with Darrin and he doesn't do eBay.

    Probably the best bloke I've never met.
    Pity there does not seem to be a category for TAs on his web site.
    Cheers Gerry

  17. #17
    1000+ Posts gerrypro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2CViking View Post
    Forget the French simply not interested in people outside France. For D and GS parts nothing beats these guys. Perfect in english, prices, stock and delivery spot on. http://www.citroen-andre.com/
    He was also very good with small CX parts such as trim clips for the A,B and C pillars. Correct length but needed to file down the head size!
    Cheers Gerry

  18. #18
    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gerrypro View Post
    Pity there does not seem to be a category for TAs on his web site.
    Knowing Darrin, I doubt he'd agree.
    He has his hands full working on the cars, but he does work on TAs.

    richo

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    1000+ Posts forumnoreason's Avatar
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    I just had a rummage on the citroen andre site, no luck with checking parts, do you need an original part number? (the catalogue button- the car image doesn't work (yet?) )

    Steven

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    Now go make me a sandwich Hotrodelectric's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by forumnoreason View Post
    I just had a rummage on the citroen andre site, no luck with checking parts, do you need an original part number? (the catalogue button- the car image doesn't work (yet?) )

    Steven
    I think Andre only has the 3rd-nose D parts book up now. Unfortunately, it's been that way for quite a while. On the plus side, he usually does snap to when you send a specific request. Prices are going to be dependent on what he has on hand- most of his stock is NOS.
    The measure of your character isn't what you do when people are watching- it's what you do when they aren't watching.

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    1000+ Posts gerrypro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by forumnoreason View Post
    I just had a rummage on the citroen andre site, no luck with checking parts, do you need an original part number? (the catalogue button- the car image doesn't work (yet?) )

    Steven
    Best to send him an email outlining your needs. Part numbers help. Spare parts books are available for download as PDF from Tony Jacksons Site. http://www.agua.nu/ds-files/tony-jackson/
    Cheers Gerry

  22. #22
    Fellow Frogger! kimmo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Citroen Ebay traders from France... thoughts?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2CViking View Post
    Forget the French simply not interested in people outside France.
    It took a Viking to have enough courage to say this....
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  23. #23
    VIP Sponsor richo's Avatar
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    I've had some very positive experiences with private sellers on ebay, located in France.
    Helpful and responsive, again, provided you use the translator or speak French.
    It's a fair call.

    Some of my more interesting trinkets have been located in France.

    richo

  24. #24
    mnm
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    Someone mentioned that the french don't trust buyers outside of France thinking they could be a scam. I probably have more positive feedback on my Ebay profile in french now than in english! Interestingly some of them actually write "Ebayeur serieux" . So I guess there may be some truth in it. My experience has only been positive. I only communicate with them in French... if they reply in english or their atttempt at Aussie slang then so be it. It can be amusing.

    Matthew

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    1000+ Posts gerrypro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Someone mentioned that the french don't trust buyers outside of France thinking they could be a scam. I probably have more positive feedback on my Ebay profile in french now than in english! Interestingly some of them actually write "Ebayeur serieux" . So I guess there may be some truth in it. My experience has only been positive. I only communicate with them in French... if they reply in english or their atttempt at Aussie slang then so be it. It can be amusing.

    Matthew
    Hear Hear!!!!!!
    Cheers Gerry

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