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· Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been thinking about building one of the FFR kits for a while and I know there is a problem with getting the whole kit into Canada so you have to buy some of the parts from Whitby to complete the cars, plus of course you need a driveline. My question is, if I buy everything seperately with invoices from FFR, Whitby, and somewhere else for a crate motor and engine and rear end, have the misc parts shipped to a border drop shipper, then I drive down to Massachusetts and pick up the kit and pick up the rest of the parts on the way back to Canada from the drop shipper, will I have trouble crossing the border because I would have a more or less complete car kit with me even though it's all loose parts from different suppliers? Do I need to pick this up in several stages to avoid problems with Customs? Any insight you guys could offer into getting the kit into Canada in as few steps as possible would be helpful!

-Matthew
 

· Actual builder now!
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I'm no expert but I think you might be tempting fate by doing that. Just get the Whitby stuff shipped. It isn't that heavy and shouldn't cost too much.
Plus even the Canadian base kit, with the appropriate deletions, might not make it over unless you get your Permission to Import letter from Transport Canada.
 

· FFR Craftsman
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I too think you would be tempting fate by bringing the whole works across at once. The customs agent could look at the shipment and decide that with all of the additional parts you now have a kit. If you bring the rest across at another time, it will be looked at as car parts. I think I would try to source the drivetrain locally for warranty purposes.
Best of luck.
Bill


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· Registered
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The risk is that a bright CBSA agent will see that you're circumventing the exemption by bringing in a kit car rather than just parts and will refuse it. The TC approval specially says that this is prohibited.

Now in reality you may very well get away with it. In my case the agent never even left his desk and just accepted my paperwork at face value. But if you do get caught then, in addition to losing your kit, TC may use the opportunity to tighten up the rules again.

Why don't you just do what the rest of us do - either source the needed parts locally or bring it in over several shipments ?:icon18:
 

· Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for your feedback gentlemen. According to this Transport Canada FAQ (Frequently asked questions for Kit Cars - Transport Canada), it isn't even legal to bring in the completion kit from a third party US supplier, or any other parts that might be attached to the car. Has anyone had any trouble with that?

-Matthew
 

· Premium Member
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Most of what you get in the completion kit you can easily purchase locally (NAPA/Canadian Tire/Car Quest). For some items, just order them after you have your kit home. As for the drive train, I would get the drive shaft from a US supplier...cheaper then having a Mustang one shortened.

Rocky
 

· Actual builder now!
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Thanks for your feedback gentlemen. According to this Transport Canada FAQ (Frequently asked questions for Kit Cars - Transport Canada), it isn't even legal to bring in the completion kit from a third party US supplier, or any other parts that might be attached to the car. Has anyone had any trouble with that?

-Matthew
Nope. No trouble whatsoever. I even went down to Whitbymotorcars to pick up the completion kit. Spent a great couple of hours touring the shop and chatting with Jeff but I digress. It is not illegal to import shocks or brake lines or control arms from the US to put on your Mustang so there is no reason for a the customs guy to question those parts by themselves.
Please do everybody a favour and don't try importing everything together and chance ruining the fragile and hard-fought-for understanding/compromise that FFR has worked out with TC just for the sake of a few dollars shipping. Not to mention possibly losing your own kit. It isn't worth it. Just my 2 pence
 

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The Transport Canada FAQ also states that you CAN import any part specific to the completion of a base kit.

You can bring the base kit into the country, then order any part specific to the completion and import. An example might be FFR front spindles, anything but their part isn't the 'correct' part. There are lots of other examples.

Transport Canada is not trying to prevent us from ordering parts to complete our kits.

Transport Canada has these rules in place to prevent people from buying complete cars, removing the drive train, strapping everything down on a trailer and calling it a 'kit'.

Can you order a complete kit...No. Transport Canada wants you to import the base kit from FFR or any other kit builder. But they do allow you to import parts that are required for the completion of the kit.

Quote from TC FAQ "...some kits are very basic. They may only contain a bare body shell with a windshield, some door hinges and latches, and a bare frame. In these very basic kits that are far from the definition of "vehicle" there may sometimes be room for such items as a particular suspension piece or a fuel cell. "

Transport Canada is not trying to prevent 'hobbiests' like ourselves from completing our cars. What they don't want is for us to try to cheat a complete car into the country and they also don't want us to start a build and sell mill.

In the end, order what you want, but you are going to start with the base kit. After that order what you need to finish your car and ship in across the border. If you prefer to pick it up at some northern US post depot and drive it across, fine, just declare it at the border. If you try to cheat, you may lose, if you order what you need from FFR, Fortes, Levy, Finishline etc. Cobra specific parts that are essential to making your car what it is supposed to be, declare your purchases and pay your duty/tax...you have nothing to worry about.

of course...just my opinion.
 

· Snake Farmer
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What we are actually doing by purchasing just the base kit, with the Canadian buyers deleted parts, is considered as just a parts order, and not a "kit" of any sort.

So in reality, none of us Canadians have a "kit car" as they are defined by TC. If someone asks us, "Is it a Kit car?", you can honestly say NO..:)
 

· Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The Transport Canada FAQ also states that you CAN import any part specific to the completion of a base kit.

Quote from TC FAQ "...some kits are very basic. They may only contain a bare body shell with a windshield, some door hinges and latches, and a bare frame. In these very basic kits that are far from the definition of "vehicle" there may sometimes be room for such items as a particular suspension piece or a fuel cell. "
This is from the Transport Canada FAQ:

Q. 11. The system requires a car kit (starter kit) hobbyist to get parts to complete the car in Canada. Is it legal to buy parts in Canada that have been imported, such as parts from a dealer's parts counter?

A. A hobby builder may NOT import, or have a third party import the parts needed to complete the car. These parts must be bought from a source in Canada not linked to the kit manufacturer.


Now I haven't read the actual law, but it seems pretty clear that they do not want you to buy a completion kit in the US.

I would tend to agree with you guys though, none of the stuff that is in the completion kit represents a car in any way shape or form and there are no restrictions on importing parts, especially ones that are generic and fit your Mustang anyway. I'm just trying to sort out what I have to do and what my paperwork should look like to ensure that I get this stuff here without any hassles, and obviously I have no interest in doing anything that would screw up the kit cars for everyone else. I run a dyno shop and I work on lots of the kit cars for guys! I do appreciate your feedback and tips as I have not imported one of these kits before and would like to avoid any pitfalls!

I should clarify that I am looking at a 33 Hot Rod not a Cobra and there are a few more Hot Rod specific parts that are not for Mustangs.

-Matthew
 

· Snake Farmer
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A. A hobby builder may NOT import, or have a third party import the parts needed to complete the car. These parts must be bought from a source in Canada not linked to the kit manufacturer.
I think what this really means is, that TC doesn't want someone taking advantages, of buying a complete kit car, and then breaking down the kit, and shipping some parts separately. It's awfully tempting to do, but at major risk..

Some things, such as the Koni's for my roadster, can not be bought anywhere in Canada, (except through WCC perhaps). A larger parts supplier here, who is actually a Koni dealer, contacted Koni to order my shocks, and they were told that they were specially made for FFR, and they could not buy them directly. Ended up using Whitby's, who in turn apparently orders them from, or through FFR. I'm pretty sure this was OK to do, in spite of the wording in that paragraph..

FFR is restricted to selling any completion, or the deleted parts to a Canadian. I believe that they agreed to this to smooth the waters with TC. I understand they had a sit down with TC, and got it all worked out this way, to ensure we can order their base kits, with the least amount of fuss.

Fine with me, I would really hate to see "anything", that may screw up the chance to purchase the base kit.
 

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I just used Al at Western Canada Cobras for almost everything. He has a TON of experience with this stuff, and has done it for many people. He knew exactly what could be imported with the kit, and what he needed to source locally and separately. I got the kit though him (he dealt with all the import papers), the correct Konis through him, as well as all the brake lines, gas lines, etc, etc. Not only did he know his stuff, he is a true pleasure to work with. I'm trying to remember if there was anything special I had to do, and I can't really think of anything because he took care of it all, and probably saved me money over me bumbling around making mistakes. A lot of other stuff I just sourced locally here from shops in Calgary, such as Western Motorsports, Mustang Shop, MOPAC, etc. I imported a few items from the US, such as Whitby and Levy, and it was no problem except for paying UPS for their ridiculous brokerage fees.
 

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Western Canada Cobras

Al Beix at WCC made importing the car painless for me also. Very helpful. I got my Coyote from Sean Hyland in Ontario. I actually ordered a complete water pump to tail shaft assembly. It arrives all bolted up and ready to drop in, free delivery right to the garage.
 

· Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks for the advice. One of the Calgary guys with a 33 that I did some work on said the same thing so I called Al. We are playing phone tag, but I will get ahold of him sometime in the next couple of days I am sure.

-Matthew
 
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