So far I rebuild all my alts, the issue of course getting like everything else, or the 'unitized part'. Them making only the bigger assembly to not supply any more basic parts so you can do work yourself. So they get much bigger parts sales and why you no longer find like wheel cylinder or master cylinder rebuild kits to have to buy the whole thing. Just like with the CVT it's getting incredibly hard for me to find all the parts to properly rebuild say automatic trans now, and other things on the cars. They just want to sell you the $1000 or whatever assemblies wherever they can.
I can rebuild the $200+ Ford alts often for as little as 30 cents for solder and back to running for years, the norm is maybe $40 max to get a HD regulator and back up running again for years until the next time.
FYI, one of the bigger reasons why the OTC alts fail so much is their insistence on using the cheap crap ebay type non-heavy duty regulators. The Chinese ones are garbage and last maybe a month or a year max and nobody uses the better ones which are available. I used to pull apart some of the alt cores that came back quick and none of them (even including top of the line brand new max dollar ones!) use the good regs and why they fry so fast. The way of the world today, they'd rather give the money to the company CEO instead. I myself after trying once or twice to use the cheap ones (one gave up maybe 3 minutes into running the alt, the other lasted a month) went to 100% heavy duty regs ONLY and I pay the price, it makes the alt last whoppingly longer.
A whopping LOT of the trouble today with ALL part quality is due to the so-called 'lifetime' warranty and it has gotten so insidious that the parts companies have begun to mod some of that policy as it costs them hundreds of millions a year. What people do NOT get at all, is that the warranty in fact has ZERO to do with a better quality part, it is actually telling you they are now making such crap quality parts and from China that they can and will give you new ones ALL DAY LONG, and why you now pay $200 for that alternator that really has no more technology than the oldschool ones did and should still sell even now for $50-$75. They make enough profit off the crap parts they can still make money while giving you as many as 3-4 (I saw some people do far more than that!) of them, of course after changing that many you get mad and move on to the next chain to then have them do you the exact same way. Rest assured the warranty has NOTHING to do with a better quality part at all.