SwirlRepair is the original repair solution for damaged swirl operating rods. At first glance the parts look simple, but making them was not. It has taken a lot of work to develop the parts, to improve every detail, and to make sure customers are satisfied by offering good documentation and further advice.
In the meantime some people who normally “manufacture” other repair parts have become aware of SwirlRepair, and they have made copies. Some have even copied texts and pictures from our website and article descriptions, and others now market their parts as “Original Something” to mislead customers to the impression that there is something original about their parts as well.
Of course it upsets us if someone cares less about our intellectual property. And it is a threat to innovation if one cannot make money on a development, because other people who don’t have the R&D expense and risk make a copy and sell it at a cheaper price.
But we understand that this is not necessarily important to the customer, who just wants a good product at a good price.
What should be important to customers are the differences between SwirlRepair and its copies. We know it is sometimes difficult to tell the differences, especially when buying on the internet. Therefore we have ordered most of the copies and taken a close look.
So far we have had some detailed information on the differences on this page. But we had to recognize that by showing the flaws of the copies we were doing work for our competitors again, now that they did not know much about the product themselves. Also with the increasing number of copies it has become pointless to list every new error that occurred on another copy. Still you find some information below.
The copies can also do the job initially, provided that they can be easily installed. This is not the case on all products as some require more clearance due to design changes and some are not even fully assembled (even if they are claimed to come “including everything you need to perform the job”).
To provide am optimum solution, the SwirlRepair kit consists of five bushings, because in most cases it is not necessary to use the “special” bushing that comes with a countersunk bolt. At least for most customers with 4-cylinder engines this means they don’t need to perform the most complicated drilling operation. Also, this leaves them a spare bushing. We think this is important especially for those who don’t want to risk waiting for a new shipment in case something should go wrong during assembly.
The SwirlRepair Rods come with the “special” bushing installed, and it also has a particularly low profile for easy installation. They are more complicated to manufacture, but they are simply the better product.
The most important aspect is that the Swirls’ ball joints must not wear or break. As soon as as the ball joints wear or break, the inlet manifold needs to be replaced – and this the expensive repair that is avoided or at least delayed as long as possible with SwirlRepair.
The first SwirlRepair kit that was ever installed still works perfectly. We tested it thoroughly before we started to sell the first small batch of parts from November 2012. After that we also made a test rig to ensure the longevity of the system. Obviously the longevity of the swirl flaps also depends on the condition of the ball joints before installing SwirlRepair (wear from the original plastic bushings), but from customer feedback we know that even with worn ball joints SwirlRepair works fine.
Some of the copies use materials that will quickly wear on the swirl ball joints (e.g. Aluminium). And on some parts the surfaces are not machined smoothly, the tolerances are not right, and some parts come without or without proper lubricant.
All this leads to increased wear of the Swirl ball joints. As soon as the ball joints are worn or break, the inlet manifold needs to be removed and replaced.
Surely our competitors also care about customer satisfaction. Still we do wonder about the behaviour of some of them. In some cases the repair kit is offered with descriptions that are simply wrong, because the descriptions are copied from BMW swirl blanking plates. On Some BMW engines the swirl flaps or parts of them can break and fall into the cylinder, but at least the swirls can be removed easily. This has nothing to do with failures of the operating rod.
We would at least doubt that one can expect help from such a seller in case of questions or problems.
Also, most sellers do not ship by Registered Mail as we do. This is a bit cheaper, but if something should go wrong with the carrier it is not possible to track and find a shipment. In one case this actually happened to us. When we contacted the seller after waiting for 2 weeks, we were promised a second shipment, which was sent by Registered Mail. From the tracking we could see that the new delivery was not handed to the Spanish post until one week after we had been promised a new shipment. When we finally received something 4 weeks after placing the order, it showed that we had been sent the wrong item (photo). All the seller did was to tell us that it would become too expensive to send a third shipment!
We could continue with several other points, but we do not want to make our competitors any smarter. It it obviously up to you to decide which product you choose. But we hope that you will choose the original SwirlRepair rather than a copy, which does not only differ in price.
a swirl repair kit? not really…