Parts Bin:How to score rare JDM parts from Yahoo! Auctions Japan
Left: J-spec Bugeye with JDM Subaru “wide grille” and JDM Subaru headlights, Right: J-spec Bugeye with JDM Subaru “GG2” (non-turbo) front bumper.
From time to time I buy used JDM bugeye parts from Yahoo! Auction Japan and occasionally get an email or PM asking about the process of how to do it. I figured I’d share here as well :
For those unfamiliar with Yahoo! Auctions Japan, it’s essentially eBay but only for the Japanese market. You can navigate the menus using Babelfish or Google Translate and you can search using universal chassis codes and model names (for bugeyes GDA, GDB, GDBA, STI, S202, Spec C, Type RA etc.).
You can get some good deals on parts you might never find over here – including JDM OEM parts: For example, I broke a black chrome JDM HID headlight a few years back. I spent two years trying to find a single headlight replacement in the U.S. (I actually bought a replacement pair after awhile), but with some creative searching I easily found several for sale on Yahoo! Auctions Japan. I also scooped up an JDM STI splitter for my JDM STI hoodscoop, and two spare JDM HID ballasts. ; )
It essentially brings the used parts market of Japan to your doorstep. The only real issue is how to buy the parts…
Hey man no problem
You can bid directly on yahoo auction japan if you just open up an account, but chances are japanese auction sellers won’t be willing to ship to the USA, and if they were the back and forth exchange to calculate the shipping rates would be a likely nightmare
However – there are several english-langauge “intermediary services” which fill this gap. They’re essentially english-fluent companies that are located in Japan, but will serve as your “agent” to place bids for you on JDM auctions. You tell them what you want to bid on, your max bid, and when to bid, etc. They automatically place the bid on your behalf. If you win, the Japanese seller ships to them (within Japan), and when you’re ready (you can tell them to wait to ship until you’ve amassed several parts to save on shipping costs) they will forward your winnings on to you in the U.S.
As far as costs, I’ve found on average they change about 20% on the purchase price (but you’re typically paying less on Yahoo Japan auction because it doesn’t figure in the shipping – so really the overall price is about the same as if you bought it from a U.S. seller)
The companies that I have experience with that do this are Rinkya and ShoppingMallJapan. I know that there are a few others, and JapanParts (Nasioc vendor) said that they will (or already do) offer this service.
These services require you to make a deposit of cash with them before you can bid.
Between the two I liked S.M.J.’s customer service better, but I liked Rinkya’s policy better where all you need to deposit is 20% of your maximum bid up front. I.e. you deposit $20, you can bid up to $100, etc. So really they even out.
should get you started.
Also fwiw it’s easy to navigate Yahoo Auction Japan without knowing Japanese if you search for chassis codes (for 02-07 gen imprezas GDB, GDA, for newer imprezas GVB, GRB, for original imprezas GC8, etc.)
If you use google translate you can navigate the categories also. If you’re searching for bugeye parts search for “UPJ” or the seller ‘used parts japan’ because they’re always parting out JDM subies.
So far I’ve scored a ton of great stuff from there