Airline Pilot's Historical Society
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. Does APHS guarantee what it sells?
In some cases, when specified, we do. However, in the aviation industry the term "as removed" has specific meaning. It means a part is as it last flew, and no claim of condition, or guarantee of function applies. These parts are sold for far less than "serviceable", or "overhauled" units with the customer opting to re-certify the part or accept the chance that it might need a repair. The majority of what we sell...aimed at the collector or sim builder, is "as removed". We sell no airworthy parts, nor do we intend for anything we sell to be used on an aircraft. Our full panels are sold to be as aesthetically correct as possible. However, we cannot guarantee function, nor can we match the exact layout of a specific airline. We also reserve the right to use creativity in cases where parts are too expensive or difficult to obtain. The price reflects what we are selling, based on all of the above factors.
That was my diplomatic explanation when I wrote that a few years ago. I now have to dispense with the diplomacy and spit it out in street language to get the point across. We still have people expecting perfect parts for low prices. We work diligently to find parts at the best possible price so we can sell them for prices the average person can afford. You are buying things like a $23,000 altimeter for about a hundred bucks or less. Most parts are only available at low prices because they are AS REMOVED...you buy cheap, and if it needs a repair, YOU PAY TO FIX IT. If you want a guarantee you will have to pay the going rate from a parts supplier, which for a used altimeter is about $1200. The terms AS REMOVED, and SERVICEABLE have been defined by the industry, not us. Parts suppliers price their stuff according to those terms...PAY MORE, GET A GUARANTEE. Buy for dirt, and assume the responsibility the way any airline does when it buys as removed parts. In short: We make every effort to sell good parts, BUT we aren't mechanics...WE'RE PILOTS, what do we know?
2. Where will APHS ship?
We have successfully shipped to over 40 countries. Very bulky items such as seats, full panels, etc., are shipped air freight and customers seem to understand the charges and accept them. We charge actual shipping costs only.
3. SHIPPING NOTICE:
APHS, being composed of airline people is offered a large discount by Fedex. Many of the items we sell, for example control columns, eyebrow trim, etc. fall into the mid-size zone, between airfreight and regular mail. Too big for mail, too small for freight, so Fedex is the only alternative. If you were to ship the same package it would cost 4 times more...we save you a LOT of money. To get that discount we have to drive across town which takes time, gas, effort and the indignity of having to wait at Fedex Kinkos for a person to pick out wedding invitations before we can ship our orders. In short, if you want to have your package fast we can have it there in a day for 4 times more. We go to Fedex once a week if possible, they deliver in 2-3 days. Mail takes about 10 days to 3 weeks. Do the math, then be patient. Our guys who have the proper airline ID's to use at Fedex are active pilots and go to Fedex as they are able.
4. What about insurance vs. customs value?
It is common for international customers to ask that a low customs value be declared on shipping documents. That is possible because the value of "scrap" aircraft parts is highly subjective. However, the insurance claim cannot exceed the customs value. We feel that if you pay for a part, APHS is responsible for delivery to you...you should get what you paid for. If you request a low customs value, and the package is lost, we cannot be held accountable. So, please decide whether you'd like to save on customs fees and take the chance, or pay the full fees and have the package insured fully. After the fact, in cases of loss, people have a tendency to get mad at us for uninsured losses. To avoid that, we have always sent free replacement parts, even though we didn't lose it, and the lack of insurance was at the customer's request. We'll have to ask that from now on you agree to the above policy.
5. I don't like having to pay a wire transfer fee to my bank, why don't you use PayPal?
We do. We now accept PayPal...reluctantly, because we still think the fees are extreme. By the time you pay for the dollar conversion, as well as the added charge for the transaction, it can be more than a wire transfer. Nevertheless, as a convenience for our customers, we will bite the bullet and accept PayPal. For US transactions, we'll take a check.
6. I'm building a 737 sim, easy and cheap, right?
Not cheap because the parts you need were once part of a multi-million dollar acft.. however; we buy 737 parts literally by the ton, so we can offer prices far below the typical dealer. We also sell no junk. Our parts are usually right off of a flying aircraft, not a desert rat from some boneyard . Our seats are sold with CLEAN covers; our seatbelts have been through the cleaner as well. We ship cheaper than ANY other company: Just examples of how we try to provide the best parts at the lowest price. Go build that sim....we're here to help all we can. We receive new inventory on a regular basis....watch the site, things change fast.
HARD: quadrants, sliding windows, 02 masks, pedals.
VERY TOUGH: NG anything...too new, come back in 10 years.
7. I'm building a 777 sim (or 757, 767 or Airbus). Will I have trouble finding parts?
Simply put, you will. There are few being torn down, and any parts available will be in high demand for flying aircraft.
8. Why are Boeing control wheels so expensive?
We sell a typical Boeing wheel for around $350 to $450. Parts dealers ask anywhere from $600 to $4000 for the same thing. The trim switch sells used for over $600, if you can find a used one. A new one is $3600. Our complete wheels include the trim switch. Below is our basic Boeing control wheel pricelist:
$450-550...new, or re-conditioned, all switches.
$400...very nice, all switches.
$350...decent, all switches.
$300...decent, some wear, missing trigger switch.
$115...clipboard with sliding tab checklist.
$100...trip reminder...very hard to find.
$25...gear to mount wheel to column.
****Everyone wants a captain's wheel: add $25 to the price if you specify "left" only. Keep an eye on our "steal" section where we often have bargain wheels****
9. What suggestions would you offer to a new sim builder?
Be careful out there. You can find parts for sale elsewhere, but it can be dangerous territory. Some sellers will take your money and send you junk, or nothing at all. At least with APHS, you know who we are, where we are, why we are here, and you have no risk. We all work for free, we have no profit motive and the only complaints we've ever had have come from people who didn't want to pay for what they bought.
10. What are my chances of finding a full panel elsewhere?
11. Will APHS hold my parts for me?
Once an order has been confirmed by email, we typically hold parts for 5 business days awaiting payment, or verification that payment has been made.
12. Will APHS send me pictures of the parts I am interested in purchasing?
Not usually. Most of the time we show pictures of the specific part in the listing on the site. More generic items such as pedals, tillers, columns, etc. are sent in "as removed" condition...normal wear. We carefully describe everything we sell.
13. Does APHS have items other than those shown for sale on the site?
Absolutely. If you don't see it, ask.
14. Why does APHS show some parts for sale and then tell me I'm on a waiting list to buy?
Some parts, columns for example, are in high demand. We have access to those, but they sell faster than we can stock them. Therefore, most are pre-sold to a person on our waiting list. We never know what we'll find in our continuing worldwide hunt for interesting parts. We usually can't predict waiting times.
15. Why was the item I was trying to buy sold before I could finalize my deal?
We sell many items that are extremely rare. We state that in the listing so the buyer is aware of the limited availability. Often, novice sim builders will ask many questions over a period of days or sometimes weeks before buying. We understand why and are always glad to answer. However, many other buyers are well informed or have researched the part prior to contacting us, which makes completing a deal fast and easy. Until we receive a firm commitment of purchase, the item is considered "available". Once a buyer commits to a purchase, we allow 5 business days to receive confirmation of payment.
16. Why do I have to plod through 200 items to find anything new being listed for sale?
You don't. Unlike your neighborhood grocery store that forces you to walk past the cookies to get to the milk, we always add new items at the end of the listings. If you regularly check the items for sale in our catalog, zip to the end and work backwards. If you have noticed, unlike most sites we have NO advertising, and we have NO secret methods embedded to entice you to buy.
17. SEAT DISCLAIMER:
Cockpit seats are always hard to find and usually expensive. We describe our seats in our listings as accurately as possible, however, some seats can't be tested until properly installed. Also, our seats are sold "as removed" which means we have priced them according to what they are, in the condition they are in. It very well could be that some adjustments are needed, maybe a bit of ingenuity required. We keep no secrets: If we know of a defect we'll tell you. If they were "serviceable".... guaranteed to be drop in and use, nothing required.....the price would easily be double. Plain translation: We charge you for what we picture and describe. The price takes into account any tinkering that might be needed.
NOTICE: International shipments will have duties, taxes and clearance fees due upon arrival. Our shipping quote is for door to airport only and does not include any local charges.
18. Why don't you have a checkout page like most other places that sell things?
We don't sell typical products as found in a typical store. We have limited supplies of many things we show on the site, and we never know if or when we'll get a replacement, if ever. Therefore, our "checkout" is done on an individual basis, assuring that all squares are filled. We also do business in over 50 countries which often requires a great deal of information sharing before an order can be completed. Finally, much of what we sell is highly regulated by the US government as to final disposition. We cannot ship to certain countries; we cannot ship hazardous materials; we cannot sell (in most cases) airworthy parts; AND...we maintain our right to decide with whom we do business. In most cases, online sellers will sell anything to anybody as long as they pay. We monitor every sale much more closely than that.
19. Why does your site look "old fashioned" rather than High tech?
For the same reason I never flew glass airplanes. If I want to know what time it is I'll look at a clock and will get the answer immediately. I don't want to pull up 13 menu pages and wait 10 minutes for each page to load to eventually come up with the answer, which will not be the answer I was looking for 10 minutes ago. In my opinion most websites are constructed by young computer geeks that think that tiny windows and more complexity is "awesome dude". To me it's a huge pain in my ass and 11 other organs. Our site is in bold print, plain English and easy to use. You don't have to search for our contact address...it's all over the site...we answer your emails very quickly. Try that with Google or AOL. Have you noticed that we have NO advertising on our site? That's out of respect for you our site visitors and supporters. We could make a lot of money driving you nuts with advertising but we decided to not prostitute ourselves for an easy dollar. I'm sure some of you will say; "spoken like a true dinosaur". You are correct...but i'm the boss and I work for free, so the site will stay the same.
20. Buried someplace on this site there is a picture of a monkey. Find it and receive a 5% discount on any purchase. One per customer, one per monkey...the monkey will change when claimed, must be used immediately. Email us where you found the monkey, along with its number.
21. Not a question, just an answer. Frequently a buyer will ask for a discount or will make an offer on parts. We will on occasion offer a small discount on a purchase of multiple items. However; keep in mind that the parts we sell come from acft. that cost many millions of dollars. We charge a tiny fraction of what parts originally sold for, or currently sell for on the open market. We also sell parts that you simply won't find elsewhere for anything close to our prices. If we could accept less we would do so...we add no fat just for sport or extra profit.