Coronavirus, Christmas and General Chaos.
IMPORTANT - WICHTIG - VIKTIG - BELANGRIJK

Brickwerks Blog

  • Campervans and Coronavirus.

    *** 5th January 2020
    Happy New Year! 
    Following the UK Governments announcement yesterday evening we are now operating under further restrictions with regards to essential travel.
    We can still operate as a business and will still be sending orders out every day, however we can no longer allow collections in person so this option has been removed from the shipping section on the webshop.
    UPS services are now enabled again for shipments outside of the UK.

     

    *** 22nd December 2020

    Please note that at the moment there are NO UPS services offered outside the UK.
    As soon as this situation changes we will turn the option back on.

     

    *** 14th December 2020

    How do!
    There's a bit to go at here so bear with us!
    First off..

    Christmas opening hours.

    We'll be closing at 5pm on 23th of December, the last orders of 2020 will leave then, any order placed after 12pm on the 23nd won't be fulfilled until January 4th 2021, please take this in to account when ordering.

    We'll be back at work on the 4th of January 2021, if the last few years are anything to go by then we'll have a mountain of orders to greet us and a bigger mountain of emails, please be patient, both emails and orders will be sorted on a first come first served basis and they usually take a couple of days to clear.

    Brexit.

    Humpf. Yeah, that.

    As a business we've purposely stayed tight lipped about this subject and the ongoing debacle however we're pretty much resigned to the fact that we're going to end up with a no deal Brexit.
    With very little guidance from the Government on the matter then we've been busy behind the scenes trying to do what we can to prepare ourselves for the next challenge in trying to maintain supply of decent quality and sensibly priced spares for VW commercials of the 80's and 90's.

    Things will change, prices will rise, there will be supply delays, we've done what we can to offset this but with customs clearance fees, import duty and extra admin costs, we've done what we can but we can only do so much.
    As things stand at the moment. (14DEC20)

    All Customers.
    We're expecting retail prices to increase around 5-10% over time (Dependent on the GBP tanking or not), as we calculate prices on the receipt of every delivery to us then the price rises may be delayed a little, we've ordered larger quantities than usual to try and help and tide us over the ensuing chaos at the ports.

    EU Customers.
    Shipping prices will increase as couriers will levy extra charges to cover the cost of presenting your packages to customs, this will be bundled in to the cost of your postage paid at check out.
    You will also be liable to pay import duty and local VAT upon entry to your country before your package is released to you.
    The payment of customs duty and VAT is the responsibility of the customer.

    As we understand it.
    £00.00 to £35.00 No VAT, No Duty (>50€)
    £35.00 to £135.00 VAT but no duty (>150€)
    £135+ VAT and duty (150€)

    As the tax rules are changing then we need to make some adjustments to how our webshop handles VAT to EU customers, as no one is willing to stay sober on New Years Eve to furtle around in the depths of the tax setting in the store then we shall make these changes after we have dispatched our last orders of 2020. As no orders will be dispatched until 2021, this is the Brickwerks Transition period (Only we didn't take 2 years to do very little) there will be a few days where we will not be charging Tax to EU customers as they will then be taxed upon import to their respective country, Invoice and payment dates will be adjusted this end to 2021 to take this in to account for book keeping purposes.

    Rest Of World.
    Business as usual except the annual rise in shipping costs.

    Corona Virus.

    As a business we've been fortunate, we've been allowed to stay open and we've managed to work all the way through the pandemic thus far, we've had a few testing days as the number of staff dwindled away to almost none at times, we've taken on another couple of people in the last year and it's a good job or we'd have been up the creek!
    We've done what we could with what we've had and we know there have been a few mess ups along the way with things missing from orders, wrong parts sent, packages going AWOL etc. and we're truly sorry, In our defence we've been under the kosh! Considering what we have managed to get out the door we've done really well considering every man and his dog have been ordering those parts for those bigger jobs you wouldn't normally do! The amount of heater fans and body panels we've managed to move has been unreal!

    Postal delays

    This is a massive problem for us at the moment, especially Royal Mail as they seem to be stuffing packages into warehouses and pulling the ones out from the front when they find the time rather than the ones that went in to storage first (last in, first out), they are also being a bit sneaky when it comes to the messages you see when you try and track your order with them! We're seeing a lot of the delayed packages sporting the “Sender preparing Item” or “Sender despatching item “tracking messages when in fact we've done our bit and got the package out the door (usually on the same day may I add!) if you see this message please trust us when you get your email to say that your order has been shipped that it has actually been shipped.

    Tracking emails are triggered when we print your shipping label, once the label is printed this means your order is packed, sealed and is going!

    I think that's it! That's enough doom and gloom for one day, fingers crossed Brexit isn't the farce everyone is expecting but we're not holding our breath.

    Hope you all have a good Christmas and New Year and it wouldn't be 2020 without signing off by saying “Stay Safe” now would it!

    Simon.

    ** 30th November 2020

    Still no big changes, we are still shipping everything as quickly as is humanly possible.
    However courier services are still operating under increased pressure and no UPS services times are now guaranteed.
    Added to this, Royal Mail services are experiencing delays in some areas. And international shipments especially are subject to delays in sorting.
    As this will no doubt add to the pressure they always experience in the build up to Christmas, please bear this in mind when ordering.

    *Update 7th July 2020

    First update in a while, as... well nothing really changed!
    We are now seeing an exceptional level of orders and working flat out to keep everyone happy... 
    It seems we are not alone in this as all courier services are also experiencing difficulties.
    We have removed the UPS Express option from the UK today as they can no longer guarantee the service.
    Royal Mail services are slowly getting back to normal, but it's still exceptionally busy, beyond the levels seen at Christmas!
    Please remember that the Royal Mail services are tracked but not guaranteed. The 24/48 services are a delivery aim only.
    We also now have a pallet delivery option for most UK areas. Its a 2-3 day service although at the moment due to the level of orders being received it may take a day or two to get the pallet ready for collection!
    Stay safe, and we hope you're all at least starting to get some use out of the vans you've all clearly been spending the last few months preparing :)

    **Update 5th May 2020

    Still no huge changes, things are continuing to run as smoothly as can be expected under the circumstances.
    Please note that as detailed below the "Warehouse Collection" option has been removed from the webshop and in its place is the option for an "Addition to Existing order". This is only to be used to order additional items to add to an EXISTING ORDER. As this is being abused we are now automatically refunding any orders which don't have an existing order to add the items to and applying a 5% fee. I'm afraid this is necessary due to the amount of time we have to spend creating credits at a time when we are already operating with a reduced staff, and the fact that Paypal now charge a fee for processing refunds

    DO NOT SELECT THE "ADDITION TO EXISTING ORDER" OPTION UNLESS YOU HAVE AN EXISTING ORDER.

     

    **Update 21st April 2020
    The situation outlined below in most cases hasn't changed too much.
    We are still shipping most orders out same day.
    However some courier services have applied a "Large Item Surcharge" especially for export orders as they try to keep the bulk of their orders moving.
    At the same time, the Royal Mail are struggling with the volume at the moment with expected delivery times extending due to the sheer volume of packages. This is affecting UK and export package delivery times.
    Many export packages are "stuck" in the UK export depots due to limited capacity of air freight.
    Some areas are being served with road freight, which is obviously slower, but means packages are still moving. 
    We have removed the Royal Mail option to a few countries for the time being.
    If your package is delayed we are asked by the Royal Mail to allow 14 working days before opening a claim. Most items are being delivered well before this time has passed.
    We're sure you appreciate the difficult situation for couriers and postal services at the moment, not only dealing with unprecedented amounts of packages but also trying to process them all at a time when they are working with fewer staff.
    We'll do everything we can to ship orders as quickly as humanly possible, but we can't control what happens after it leaves us... we have faith in the services we use to do the same.

     

    We know... your inbox is full of updates regarding the current worldwide situation. Ours is the same. We are getting a lot of enquiries though from the UK and the rest of the world so we've decided to make a post to address the most common couple of questions.

    Yes, at the time of writing we are still "open". Externally, it's business as usual, all orders are being shipped and we are still receiving deliveries as normal from all our manufacturers and suppliers with very few delays.
    There are delays in some areas with deliveries, either due to travel restrictions due to the spread of Covid-19, and some staffing issues for couriers and mail services due to isolation or illness. On the whole all the services we us are coping extremely well in difficult times.

    Visitors... As you may already know, we closed the workshop completely last year and made the decision to concentrate on expanding the webshop. This is still going ahead with new stuff arriving all the time (we wont clutter this post up with news of those... it would seem a bit too much like 'cashing in on a crisis').
    We also stopped any kind of counter sale service over a year ago, and all collection orders have had to be pre-ordered since then.
    This means that we have reduced on site visitors to our premises already, not through any kind of foresight or planning for what's happening at the moment I should add, I don't think anyone could claim to have forseen the current situation, but it does mean we don't have to take those steps to reduce face to face contact now.

    *EDIT*
    As of today 25th March 2020 we have removed the "Warehouse Collection" option.
    Collection from our premises by the general public is no longer an option as it would not be classed as "Essential Travel".
    We have replaced it with a "Addition To Order" option for those who order and then need to add something.
    When using this option, please drop us an email to let us know so we can do our best to combine the orders.

    Like many businesses, we have members of staff with families ranging from the very young to the very old, and their health and needs are obviously at the top of our priorities list.
    Whilst we're not blessed with a huge amount of free space (It's full of parts!) we do have enough to ensure working areas are far enough apart to make sure we're not all on top of each other so in most areas we can observe the "2 metre" rule.
    We've also discussed possibly running a "shift system" both to reduce the amount of contact we all have with each other and to help with childcare problems now the schools have closed. At the moment we don't need to do that, but if we do it won't have any effect on good leaving.
    Another change is that we now have a barcode scanner system for order processing (we're not quite Amazon yet though!) which means we dont have loads of different people using the computers one after another... again it's a recent introduction we were planning anyway, and not something done in anticipation of the situation we are now in.
    We  are in the position that all our units are completely seperate from other businesses so we don't have the worry of shared areas which may effect the way we operate through the coming weeks/months.

    So... at the moment, we are all fit and healthy, we're doing what we have always done, and for the forseeable future we are confident we will be able to continue to do so. We hope the same is true of all our friends, customers, and suppliers.
    Obviously we will follow the advice of the relevant departments with any arrangements we need to make and changes we need to put in place, but at the moment, we're alright

    I know we've had a lot of comments from customers who are anticipating a year of cancelled camping trips and postponed holidays, and possibly widespread travel restrictions which for many of us who travel and use campers at every opportunity probably seems like a prison sentence hanging over us... but it won't be forever and hopefully we'll be well over the worst by the time the leaves start turning brown and ready for an Indian Summer to catch up on holidays :)

    For the moment, the daffs are out and it actually feels like Spring... and there's beer in the fridge... even if theres no Pasta or bloomin' toilet roll in the cupboards!!

    Stay safe!

  • T3 Cab Floor Repair Panels - Now Available

    This panel was never available as a repair panel from VW except as part of the complete floor/cab front section.

    We now have the left and right floor panels in stock. Suitable for all T3 models.
    Panels are drilled for LHD Pedal position, but can be modified with relative ease for RHD applications. If you're at this level of repair it won't cause you any headaches!

    Another piece of the T3 Jigsaw puzzle in place :)

    Body Panel - T3 / Cab Floor / Left

     

    Body Panel - T3 / Cab Floor / Right

     

    Webshop Links:
    LEFT
    RIGHT

  • T3 Double Cab (Doka) Side Locker Doors! Now in stock

    The Pickup love just keeps on coming!
    Heres yet another in demand panel for the T3 DoKa now available as an excellent quality reproduction part!

    You'll find them here:
    LEFT
    RIGHT

  • T3 Gear Linkage UJ Pins - 251711291 - Now in stock

    A few years ago when these started becoming a problem we started offering a machined stainless steel bolt as a solution to worn/broken pins.

    Gear Linkage Pin - T3 / Gear Linkage UJ / 1983 on - 251711291 VW T3 Vanagon T25 Type25 Gear Linkage Pin

    Times have moved on with the T3 now, and people are demanding parts that not only do the same job as the original, but look original too.
    So, we're now happy to offer these original style UJ pins for the T3 gear linkage from 1983 on.

    They're very close to the original style, and supplied in Yellow Zinc Plate just like the original.

    WEBSHOP LINK

  • Ignition Lead Sets - T3 Waterboxer (early and late)

    We've been making up the HT lead sets for the early Waterboxer engines in house for some time, mainly because the available kits aren't correct for the earlier engines. Either the wrong ends, or the wrong lengths, or the wrong resistance.

    We've had to up our game a little though as keeping up with them has become a problem as we've got busier and busier over the years.
    It also makes sense to have the later kits made too as the prices keep rising. Every little helps!

    So, we are now having our own leads manufactured to our spec and with our own branding.
    Same original spec. Same quality components. Just made in larger batches to save us time and save you money!

    Webshop Link - Early
    Webshop Link - Late 

  • T3 Front Bump Stop (251411123B) - in production now

    The front bump stop for the T3 hasn't been available for a while now, and has become a bit of a problem.

     

    We've worked with Powerflex again to produce an alternative in Polyurethane, and have just test fitted and approved the final pre-production sample.

    They're listed on the webshop here and should be in stock in around 10 days.
    Webshop Link

  • Brickwerks now a stroppy teenager.

    Here's a random cake I found on a Google image search.

    Brickwerks is now 13! 

    Who'd of thought it eh!

    Can a company get a deeper voice and spots?

    Onwards and upwards!

  • Stocktake 2018

    #groan. Here we go again...

    This hateful time of year when we have to close for a few days and count everything.

    Here's your warning that we won't be available to send packages out at a moments notice!

    Tuesday 10th April - last day we'll be sending anything out, cut off time - 12pm promt.
    Wednesday 11th April - Closed, no emails will be replied to, no packages sent.
    Thursday 12th April - Closed, no emails will be replied to, no packages sent.
    Friday 13th April - If we've finished counting, data entry and eating pizza at the cost of the company then we'll start shipping packages again.

    The upshot is that we set the stock levels right and we have less chance of the problems we occasionally have where we sell something we don't actually have (we blame Angus in the workshop for picking things up and wandering off with them!)

    Remember that you can track your orders simply by logging into your account and clicking on the "where's my stuff" link at the top of the page where you'll find the current status of any orders and the associated tracking numbers (you wouldn't believe how many people don't know about this feature of the shop!)

    Get your orders in early if you're in a rush to avoid disappointment.

  • T3 Inner Sills - Original Style

    As vehicles get older and need more restoration work to keep them on the road, then it follows that originality will become an increasingly important factor in keeping them going.

    We've seen it with every model of Transporter over the years, as the values increase the importance of original looking repairs becomes more and more important. It's one of the signs that the vehicle has truly achieved "classic" status, and why we're happy to be stocking these original style inner sills as an alternative to the repair panel we already sell.

    We've just had the first delivery so they'll be showing in stock soon.

    LEFT - Webshop Link

    RIGHT - Webshop Link

    Inner Sill - T3 / Original Style / Left

     

     

  • Christmas Closing 2017...

    Well, that's another year...

    All orders placed before 5pm on Thursday have shipped, and even a couple of Royal Mail packages we snuck out of the door on Friday Morning. Everything else will ship when we come back to work on Tuesday the 2nd January 2018.

    We managed to do a couple of "behind the scenes" jobs this morning before doing the back-ups and a couple of computer updates in the new Brickwerks "Nerve Centre" (that's our posh new office/canteen :D) that we've been putting off for fear of it cocking everything up at a time when we've been unseasonably busy.

    All that remains is to wish all our customers, old and new, a very Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. We hope everything happens as you hope it will and that 2018 brings you health, happiness and whatever it is you want from your VW.

    That's it... we're out the door. Just one more very special delivery to make before Chrimbo and then we can maybe open the Quality Street.

    Have a good 'un.

    Brickwerks.

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