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Has investing in cloning equipment, etc been profitable for you?


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Poll: Transponder technology (44 member(s) have cast votes)

Has investing in car key cloning equipment been a worthwhile and profitable investment, for you?

  1. Yes (25 votes [56.82%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 56.82%

  2. No (14 votes [31.82%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 31.82%

  3. I don't do them as I have never thought the investment was worthwhile for my local market. (5 votes [11.36%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 11.36%

If you have cloning equipment would you re-invest in more?

  1. Yes (11 votes [52.38%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 52.38%

  2. No (10 votes [47.62%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 47.62%

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#1 kobblers

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 01:49 PM

Due to a recent debate about cloning car keys etc, it was suggested that a poll should be done to see how may people are actually profiting from their investments.

 

"A lot of us were sold very expensive key cloning machines , transponder chips and Key boards on the understanding we`d all be making money hand over fist on this unavoidable new technology

 

 ....well 20 years in ....myself and a loads of others I speak to are lucky if you do about 2 a fortnight ....

 

so if you`re doing well at it .....GOOD FOR YOU !"

 

Rick.

 

 


if i could make a wish, i think i'd pass, can't think of anything i need.

#2 rapidlocks

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 02:39 PM

cloning has changed 10 fold over the years , by far the biggest impact has been the chinese who are turning out cheaper units and more importantly far cheaper consumables , ie cloning chips . and in many cases the chinese are releasing new cloning functions long before the main players , toyota g chip and 80 bit chips is a prime example as available on handy baby etc a long while back , the days of the chinese just copying the main players has long gone and they now develop and dare i say , in some areas lead the field .

 

just as the auto locksmiths once suffered as couldnt compete with the shops low prices on clone keys , many shops now suffer with the beer brigade armed with china cloners and very cheap consumables , in some cases cloning chips are a 3rd of the price on the china units and just as reliable and in some cases can do far more , allowing the beer boys to undercut many shops .

 

with cloning , the race to the bottom is almost as low as it can go for now , and due to lower rates of course payback and profit takes longer to realise.

 

alot will depend on competition and area , some do seem intent on winning the race to the bottom and not all these are beer boys .

 

i suspect the poll will reflect that some do make it pay and do well and some dont .


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#3 kobblers

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 03:08 PM

We had somebody open up near to us, a couple of years ago, who I would class as the Beer Boys; cheap keys, cheap fobs, crappy premises, barely any training................

 

They lasted about a year and folded, but in that time really did start a race to the bottom which affected nearly all of those in my area who were offering cloning, etc.

 

 

Rick.


if i could make a wish, i think i'd pass, can't think of anything i need.

#4 k4mrc

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 04:26 PM

there should be an add on to this,

asking "if you have cloning equipment would you re-invest in more?"


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#5 grahamparker

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 06:05 PM

there should be an add on to this,

asking "if you have cloning equipment would you re-invest in more?"

 

I just have today.


"You're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't" - Bart Simpson

#6 Flash

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Posted 04 May 2017 - 06:06 PM

there should be an add on to this,

asking "if you have cloning equipment would you re-invest in more?"

 

Fair point.



#7 kobblers

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 10:54 AM

Done, k4mrc.

 

Rick.


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if i could make a wish, i think i'd pass, can't think of anything i need.

#8 mrkeys

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 11:13 AM

Its always been gradual in my area, 3 on a good week - 1 on a bad week. Ive even gone 2-3 weeks without a job (£25-£45 per job depending on chip used)

 

still good enough spread over a year but not worth buying a proper diagnostic machine for - as soon as I mention prices between £100 & £200 for remote keys they generally run for the hills.

 

I'm happy doing a small amount, then if a customer does want to pay more for a remote key I order the key make £20 on it and call someone up with the equipment let them take their £50 programming fee and they bung me a tenner for the referral - every ones a winner


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"Live long and prosper"

 

 


#9 Peter@CopyCut

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 10:06 AM

Went to my friends garage yesterday, he had a guy from one of the mobile locksmith franchises, in his van he had Silca RW4 +, but he was running around with the clone of zed bull and Silca SBB from ebay and that was all he used to do keys for couple of cars. I wasn't in a position to ask any questions but it made me thinking, that maybe to get into key cloning all I need is couple of cheapos from ebay. I know it might not look too professional but in the end if it does the job, we are happy, customers are happy.

I know not many people up here would voluntarily admit of having these, but it would be interesting to know the truth, is this all we need to start slowly and build it up until buying expensive kit is feasible?


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---------------

PETER


#10 grahamparker

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 10:18 AM

Went to my friends garage yesterday, he had a guy from one of the mobile locksmith franchises, in his van he had Silca RW4 +, but he was running around with the clone of zed bull and Silca SBB from ebay and that was all he used to do keys for couple of cars. I wasn't in a position to ask any questions but it made me thinking, that maybe to get into key cloning all I need is couple of cheapos from ebay. I know it might not look too professional but in the end if it does the job, we are happy, customers are happy.

I know not many people up here would voluntarily admit of having these, but it would be interesting to know the truth, is this all we need to start slowly and build it up until buying expensive kit is feasible?

 

No Backup, no updates, no Help when things go wrong.

 

Your choice of course but i would not recommend any clone kit for programming.


"You're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't" - Bart Simpson

#11 Simes

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 03:19 PM

Went to my friends garage yesterday, he had a guy from one of the mobile locksmith franchises, in his van he had Silca RW4 +, but he was running around with the clone of zed bull and Silca SBB from ebay and that was all he used to do keys for couple of cars. I wasn't in a position to ask any questions but it made me thinking, that maybe to get into key cloning all I need is couple of cheapos from ebay. I know it might not look too professional but in the end if it does the job, we are happy, customers are happy.

I know not many people up here would voluntarily admit of having these, but it would be interesting to know the truth, is this all we need to start slowly and build it up until buying expensive kit is feasible?

If you are starting out in programming, the one thing you need more than anything else is Backup and Support.  When you get your first non-starter you'll realise that pretty quick!  It's a very lonely job when a customer has driven their car to you and when they come back for it it doesn't start.  It doesn't happen often and is almost always a minor issue.  Still...it doesn't feel like it when you are in that position.  You won't get any support from clone machines.  Keep professional and there will be someone at the end of the line to help when things go wrong... and they do from time to time.


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#12 Count Muppet

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 04:08 PM

Get yourself a keyline mini and a keydiy. That will be a nice cheap way to test the market.

#13 rapidlocks

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Posted 06 May 2017 - 04:13 PM

It really depends on what you want to be able to do programming wise , clone of zedbull is very limited on what it will clone , and clone sbb is also very limited on vehicles you can do keys to even more limited if you dont have codes , so with those 2 kits he has very little coverage .

 

theres a few ways to look at china kit , some is tat copy kit and some other kit is their own developments that are quite good. for instance for cloners its hard to beat the chinese handy baby and cn900 mini for coverage and to very cheap but reliable clone chips .

 

for programming skp900 and OBDstar X300 DP units offer alot of coverage for very little money and token free , both have their bugs but both very good kit with obdstar being the better of 2 so much so a mainstream supplier has copied some obdstar coverage , but although very good token free coverage you have no back up , support or comeback if the shit hits the fan , and if new to it you will get these moments when you realise adrenelin is brown and runny.

 

then more advanced programming kit from china you have vvdi 2 and vvdi mb tool , but with these you need support if new as simple user error can kill a car.

 

you cant go wrong with advanced diagnostics kit , also a good lower cost token free obd option is truecode, also supervag on vag vehicles , all offer excellent back up and support , something you dont get from chinese.

 

just as you cant go wrong with silca or keyline for cloning add miraclone to good cloner too and lockdecoders support is about the best out there, add too tango , your spoilt for choice.

 

for some support is not an issue , but for some its essential , some machines are a machine for life so an asset whilst china machines tend to be a machine for now and you will need to buy again , at some point everyone ends up with silca , keyline or mainstream kit , just some pay less as invest in the best to start with .


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#14 CDTL

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 07:20 AM

I have spent out on Silca RW4 + with M Box and KeyDiy and now Silca Easy Scan Plus, I am not saying I am doing loads at the moment but it is definitely going the right way. But the reason I decided to go for it was you cannot keep saying to customers no we don't do them because when they need some yale keys cutting they will probably go back to the shop they got the car key done.
Just my thoughts and opinion
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#15 Simes

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 07:46 AM

Good point well made. We have just purchased equipment that we know won't directly make us a profit for some time. However, we will be able to say 'yes' many more times than our immediate competitors. That will improve our reputation in the locality and will no doubt contribute to our profitability indirectly.
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#16 futura12

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Posted 01 October 2017 - 02:19 PM

the only profit is in lost keys you can charge to pick it and make a key 



#17 grahamparker

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Posted 01 October 2017 - 06:12 PM

the only profit is in lost keys you can charge to pick it and make a key


If that is the case your not doing it right. We do approx 10-15 cloned non remote keys a week and we make a very very nice profit. We are now selling cloned keys to the local main dealers as it is quicker and cheaper for us to do it. Plus we can do it without having to order anything in.
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"You're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't" - Bart Simpson

#18 eimco

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Posted 01 October 2017 - 09:59 PM

If that is the case your not doing it right. We do approx 10-15 cloned non remote keys a week and we make a very very nice profit. We are now selling cloned keys to the local main dealers as it is quicker and cheaper for us to do it. Plus we can do it without having to order anything in.


Have to agree with Graham we do about 15/20 a week of cloned keys and now that we offer dignostics and no one around us doing it , the cloned and full remotes has increased and we make good good money on them. We are retail and don’t do lost keys at all.




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