disaster, disaster recovery … and great service




Last year I traded one of my bikes (a CB1000R) for a new Z1000SX and during the second or third week that I had it I dropped it – thankfully it was at just about zero mph. A simple one really and one that should have been avoidable.

As I pulled of the A road that I was on to take a few pictures, the front tyre slipped in mud as I pulled up and that was it I was off – all over in a split second and you can imagine how I felt. I’ve had accidents in the past, but never one like this. I could of course blame the mud – but the truth is I should have seen it and dealt with it accordingly.

OK I accept that disaster may possibly be over stating things and thankfully the damage was pretty light and all cosmetic – but it looked expensive and I felt awful – my new bike had only about 400 miles on it and I had messed it up already – and to be honest it felt pretty disastrous to me at the time.

The damage to the plastics was on the right hand side along the top of the fairing and the main side panel, and I had also scraped the front brake lever, the bar end and a right hand side casing. Sorting out the latter wasn’t really a problem but sorting out the plastic was beyond me especially as the top part of the nose fairing was actually scrapped away. I feared the worse in terms of cost and initially thought that it would mean the expense of new plastics.

I made a few ‘phone calls to repairers, none of which left me with any confidence about getting a decent job done until I spoke to a guy called Simon who runs his own Smart repair centre in Middleton (Manchester). He sounded decent enough on the ‘phone and said that he would need to see the damage before he could make a sensible comment on whether it could be repaired and if it could how much it would it cost. This was in stark contrast to one of the companies that I had ‘phoned that even without seeing the bike told me how difficult it was.

I took the bike over to Simon and it’s fair to say that he came across as decent bloke and it turned out that he was a biker himself so he knew just how I felt and just how important it was to me to have the bike back to ‘showroom’ condition. He had a good look at the bike, weighed up the job and told me that it could all be sorted – and also gave me plenty of reassurance about getting the colour matched properly (it’s the candy lime one).

He could have done the whole job of taking the panels off as well as the repair and paint – but Simon gave me the money-saving option of taking the panels off myself so as to save on the labour charge. So that was it I dropped the panel off the following week and he was as good as his word in terms of time taken to do the job and the quality of finish. He didn’t attempt to touch in the repairs but opted to paint the whole panel so as it would look right. He even managed to re-use the decal off the fairing (but he did say in advance that if that wasn’t possible he would sort out the supply of a new one.

I think the pictures below tell their own story of the quality of the repair.

When I picked up the panel from Simon I thanked him but at the same time told him that I hoped not to see him again. Unfortunately I did need to see him again just the other week actually and once again he did a top job – although it cost me a bit more than this time, I’ll write and post pictures on that one next week.

If you need any work doing, dents, scrapes, painting etc then I can certainly recommend Simon. You can contact him on 0161 637 3100 or 07593 782 756 or you can email him at smartrepaircentre@yahoo.co.uk

When you find someone who does what he says he going to do, when he says he’s going to do it and without any bullsh*t then it’s well worth knowing about.