There has been a trend in recent years for fewer major industry names to display at Mechanex, with the exhibition space taken up by smaller players, niche equipment suppliers and parts specialists, particularly in the remanufacturing arena.
Among the biggest names at the November show was Schaeffler, better known for its leading brands LUK, INA, FAG and Ruville, which ran some excellent Q&A sessions. An elevated floor area was given over to displays of its products, with technical specialists on hand to answer questions and offer advice. I never knew that the horrors of a dual mass flywheel could be so reasonably dealt with!
There were also hands-on lectures and demonstrations by Dayco on timing belts, including their belt-in-oil to replace timing chains, as well as the usual seminar sessions running throughout the day.
Battery manufacturers were also omnipresent and eager to satisfy the increasingly complex and demands of modern cars, particularly the stop-start variety where the weird requirements of alternator, battery and brake energy recovery systems need satisfying. Companies such as Ecobat were available to present diagnostic solutions to stop ECUS from crashing when the battery is disconnected.
With the nifty corporate slogan of ‘Drive, Steer, Stop’, Shaftec boasted a wide range of remanufactured transmission, steering and braking parts. Should an item not be in stock, the company offers a collection and remanufacturing service of your existing component within five working days, covering everything from brake calipers to driveshafts and steering pumps.
Passing the BTN Turbo stand, we paused to reflect on the diminutive size of the Garrett turbos on display, many in cutaway form, before moving on to interesting stands from Bosch, Valeo, Delphi, Brembo, Sykes-pickavant, Sealey and others.
The 2018 Mechanex shows will be held at Alexandra Palace in London in March, Event City in Manchester in May, and the Ricoh Arena in Coventry in October, before returning to Sandown Park in November. Entry is free with advance ticket or sign in at the gate. Also free for every attendee is a bacon bun and a T-shirt, plus various goodies from exhibitors.
First thing to catch the eye was this well-belted Audi A8 engine on the SNR/NTN stand. No need for braces with this!
Tuition and Q&AS regarding timing belts on the Dayco stand. The nitty-gritty can be complex these days.
The fitting of a dual mass flywheel was made simpler, if not exactly easier, thanks to expert demonstrations by Schaeffler technicians.
Advice and instruction on Schaeffler’s huge range of products from its specialists.
A clean turbo is a happy turbo, so chemical cleaners are better to use early than late.
Changing a battery these days can demand tools such as these devices from Ecobat to maintain integrity of the car’s electronics.