My experience with Modelspares goes back to the original owner, who was always courteous and very knowledgable. I have been repairing Hornby Tri-ang loco's since the early sixties and had built up a considerable stock of the bread and butter spares to service loco and tender drive loco's up to the end of the Margate era. I decided about five years ago to cut back to just servicing a few loco's for close friends and fixing up loco's bought at swapmeets for resale on the internet.
Recently a friend brought a loco to me that had been donated to his club by an older member which was in dire need of some TLC, so I got the Servicing Sheets out and started making a list of the parts required to return the loco, a Stanier 8F, to its former glory, I had brushes and springs, but needed one set of valve gear for the right hand side plus the cylinders and motion brackets. I looked on the Modelspares site, found the Part No's I wanted and proceeded to put them in the shopping basket. The parts came to just over a tenner so I proceeded to checkout, once I began to input my details the screen froze and I could not proceed any further. As I was doing the order from work during my lunch hour (no, really!) I thought I'd have another go that evening when I returned home.
A second go with the same part no's didn't get any further than I'd got at lunchtime, so I tried to order the same spares from Abbiegails, unfortunately they didn't have all the parts I needed so I was stymied.
Then I remembered East Kent Models whom I have also dealt with over the years and enjoyed very good service, both by mail order and in the shop in Whitstable. So looking at the clock (we were 9 hours behind GMT due to having a trial of daylight wasting time) I rang EKM and got Ian Robertson straight away, I didn't have an up to date price list from them, but as I reeled off the Part No's Ian completed them for me and told me he could do them all from stock, but when it came to me giving my CC details there was a problem, my order didn't meet the shops minimum requirement of 5 pounds per order! Frankly I was dismayed because on the other two sites I visited the parts came to over a tenner plus post and packing, I remembered that I needed some buffers and and some other bits and managed to get the order over the five pound hurdle! The parts turned up a week later and the loco has been returned to as near as dammit, it's original condition.
The moral of the story, look around, get a copy of EKM current spares lists and have a look at the pricing, try their old fashioned service, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.
A word of caution however, supplies of spares for the Margate produced loco's are now running very low, so some parts may be very hard to find, so don't hesitate if you want that old Hornby Tri-ang loco that you had since before puberty to run again, buy your parts soon. They may not be around for much longer.
Usual disclaimer - no connection to anyone mentioned here - just a very satisfied customer.