I need a set of calipers to turn in as cores for my '64 wagon project, so I decided to try the local pick a part here in Vegas. I pack up my tools, bring extras in case I encounter something unexpected.
I leave my house around 10:15, arrive around 10:45, ask the guy if he has any older GMs. He checks the inventory, 76 El Camino, 77 Nova, etc. Great, I'm sure I'll find something. I locate the few older GM's that are there & most of them have been stripped clean. Finally stumble upon a '74 Buick Century with all 4 wheels still bolted on...perfect. I take out my Snap On 1/2" cordless impact, pull the wheels. I have both calipers off in about 5 minutes, its pretty easy when you can snip off the brake hose. Calipers even have the Delco Moraine casting, excellent cores to get back into circulation.
So I walk back to the front of the yard & get out my wallet. Throw the calipers on the cashier shelf & the guys rings me up for $48!
Yes, $24 per side for 45 year old calipers with both piston seals halfway out of the bores.
I do a quick double take & ask, "are you sure that's correct?". I was speechless. Rebuilt calipers are $15 each on Rock Auto!!!!
I did the quick math in my head. Summit & Rock Auto each charge between $30-$35 for a core. By the time I pay to ship them back, I'll be in for $48 plus $20-$25 for shipping. It would cost me more money than to just eat the core charge & I'd still have the hassle of going to the Post Office to ship them back. I just looked at him & said "No thanks".
When I was driving home, I realized he asked me what kind of car the parts came off. It didn't register that maybe they're charging more for older parts?
I remember the not so distant past when most pick a parts had a price list & calipers were around $6. Regardless, there's 90 minutes of my life I'll never get back. Sigh...