I have noticed that there is a bit of a trend to lie about parts condition and fitment on Ebay so I thought Id write a little guide for the people who dont know a lot about cars but want to buy a gift for someone.
You need to be sure of the year and model of car, parts vary between years and models, sometimes parts fit from other years but I wouldnt rely on 90% of Ebay sellers for that information, find out from somewhere else, internet forum maybe?
The part number would be helpfull, or you need to know what the part looks like. Things like casting numbers are for the more advanced purchaser
You will see some odd terms in listings, NOS in regards to vehicle parts indicates that the part is NEW OLD STOCK , which means the item has never been used and in most cases is still in its original packaging. It is a part that the dealer would have sold you, in the companys box.
Anything else that is new is NORS, new old replacement stock, something that you would have bought from a parts place when the vehicle was not that old. It is not as good as NOS but should be just as usable.It may not fit quite as well as NOS. A NORS waterpump for example is fine for a daily driver.
MINT should mean NOS, ANYTHING less is not mint, USED could mean anything from perfect condition to junk, be carefull with "used" until you know your stuff .
If your after a badge or name plate make sure anything you are looking at has all its clips, pins, threaded bolts, its nearly useless without. Check the chrome and weigh up the price asked against the cost of rechroming. If it should have paint or enamel what condition is it in? if its been "wire brushed" pass on it unless its very rare.
Reproduction (Repro) parts can be really good but sometimes they are trash, NOS is better, used might be the second choice. Only buy repro stuff made by a well respected manufacturer.
If its rubber bits your after Repro is No1 followed by NOS , NOS can have gone hard due to age, used is only an option if the part is impossible to get anywhere.
My advice? if its expensive to you , dont buy it without the car persons knowledge or get confirmation its whats wanted from someone close who knows, no point wasting money. Be aware that sometimes spending more can be better, IE:
your looking fo a piece of stainless trim and find one NOS and one used. If the NOS is say $200 and the used is $50 but rough buy the NOS, the cost of fixing rough stainless is fairly high, in this case the NOS is a better bet :)
This guide is designed to help people without technical knowledge and prevent them wasting their money on junk so if you found this helpfull or you think it will help save people from wasting money please tick the little box :)