Aftermarket, Feature Story, Recycled Parts, Replacement parts, Vehicle accessories, Vehicle solutions

Dissecting dismantlers: Recycling with ACM Parts

ACM Parts has been a leading company in the reclaimed parts industry for more than a decade. Its site in Broadmeadows – to Melbourne’s north – is home to a team of dedicated dismantlers.

This team carefully takes damaged vehicles apart before ACM Parts reintroduces components to the market.

SEE ALSO: How John from ACM Parts fell in love with the gig

They come from all kinds of backgrounds but find themselves sharing a passion for tinkering with cars, taking them apart, and reclaiming the parts that can be reused.

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Built for success

Tom Swift is one such dismantler who firmly believes he’s landed his “dream job”. The 22-year-old lives just down the road from the Broadmeadows site in Fawkner but only recently got involved in the dismantling industry.

He started his professional life as a qualified tiler but had been fascinated by cars since he was young. “Throughout my apprenticeship, I developed a passion for cars,” he said.

“That’s all I’d be doing after work – working on cars. I decided I wanted to do something for the rest of my life that I truly enjoy.”

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Once he joined the team at ACM Parts, Tom took his love for cars to another level.

The process of taking apart vehicles and cataloguing their components is a tad more meticulous than playing with the pride and joy in the backyard. Nonetheless, Tom said his time tinkering away on his own car held him in good stead coming into dismantling full-time at Broadmeadows.

“Through that, I was able to develop a deep understanding of how most vehicles are put together,” he said.

“With this job, I’ve learned the terminology as well as the various parts of the dismantling trade in terms of QC (quality check), cataloguing, and identifying components on a vehicle. “Without that hands-on experience I had previously, I wouldn’t have been able to keep up with all the new terminology that’s coming through.

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“I kept on it – head down – for the last four or five years basically. “I’ve been able to come into this and work competently by myself and keep up with quotas.”

Assembly not required

Once a vehicle comes to Tom’s space, he’s given a list of parts he needs to take out and catalogue.

Barely a scrap goes to waste at ACM Parts, so nearly everything from a damaged car is re-used elsewhere, whether through the Reclaimed parts line or other product lines offered by the company.

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Tom is one of 12 dismantlers on-site, all of which have their own workstation and vehicle(s) to take apart. Despite having separate stations, Tom said he had a blast with the team every day he’s been working with ACM Parts.

“I tell everyone this is my dream job – coming from construction to this has been a massive improvement for me,” he said.
“It’s steady work in a nice work environment with friendly workmates. You’re not competing or battling with them; they’re always here to help and lend a hand.”

As well as a top-notch team, Tom said the high-quality tools and equipment ACM Parts has at its disposal is enough to make any car-lover’s eyes water.

“Honestly, the best part is buying the tools,” he added.
“Anything new and good – I just love it.
“When I got the opportunity to sink a bit into a decent toolbox and setup, I jumped at it.
“It’s been so good using decent tools and seeing how well they perform over sub-par tools.”

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Dismantling wasn’t a career choice Tom considered when he was in his teens, but through his opportunity with ACM Parts, he’s landed a job that combines his love for cars with his love for mateship.

He encouraged anyone who wanted something similar to seriously look at dismantling as a possible career choice.

“I’m not going to lie, taking everything apart and not having to put it back together is a satisfying and great feeling,” Tom added.

“If you can take it apart – you can do this job and everyone’s here to help and train people if they want it as a career.”

All parts covered

ACM Parts Reclaimed is a vital part of the company’s DNA. Executive General Manager Adam O’Sullivan said the arm of the company was a primary reason behind its inception.

“Over time, while it’s a smaller portion of the business nowadays, it’s still a key part of what we do,” he said.
“We believe ACM Parts has the range that no one else has. We have a range of either new, aftermarket or reclaimed part to meet a customer’s choice.
“No one else in Australia has that range.”

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Adam added that ACM Parts Reclaimed gives customers a cost-friendly repair choice, as well as find parts for vehicles across the car parc, including older or rarer models.

“It also enables us to extend the life of vehicles for customers who have older cars to keep that mode of transport going,” he said.

Lee Mottershead is the Production Manager for ACM Parts at the Broadmeadows site. He leads the 20 staff work on-site, including the 12 dismantlers. Other team members include forklift drivers, quality control officers and inventory specialists.

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All play a vital role in ensuring the site is a well-oiled machine when it comes to processing cars and parts. Like Tom, it was Lee’s love for cars that lead him down the road to joining ACM Parts and its Reclaimed teams. He said dismantling’s not often a job car enthusiasts consider, but no one who works with him has any regrets.

“They come from everywhere – I’ve got ex-mechanics, or people just looking for a change,” Lee said.
“This is an easier role compared to a mechanic because you’re just taking parts off.
“We do also get plenty of people who love cars outside of work, and love taking them apart as a hobby.
“It’s a perfect role for them to get paid for something they love to do.”

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