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Quality of consumer goods in USA

Old 11-13-2008, 04:15 PM
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Default Quality of consumer goods in USA

Is it just me or has anyone else felt the lack of quality in consumer goods and service?

Bi-fold doors from a major name brand company that are made from compressed paper and won't hold a screw.

TV's that are defective out of the box (2 in 2 years).

I could go on - but what gets me is if I tried to get away with producing garbage like some major manufacturers do I would get sued out of existence - How do they get away with it?

Old 11-13-2008, 08:08 PM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

I agree DV8, but as long as someone is willing to purchase low quality, low cost goods then there will remain a market and a supplier for said goods. If we all demand high quality and stick to our guns then things could change.
Old 11-14-2008, 12:43 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Bill Maher on HBO's Real Time had a good point. We used to make things here in the US... now we order in.

What really should bother us is the abyssmal state that GM now finds itself in. The leader of new world automobile technology is now begging for table scraps from Uncle Sam and Cousin Tokyo. Chevrolet could be the next Edsel, or Yugo for that matter. I kind of feel that Buick will be the first to be cut from the team, Pontiac a close second... but who knows.

A painfull embarassing crappy situation any way you look at it.
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Old 11-14-2008, 09:44 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

The crap we are getting from China, is worse than the junk that came out of Japan after WWII. Lead paint and other toxic items come to our shores and there seems to be no regulations restricting their import, at least no onethat will enforce the regs.
People want the cheapest price and I don't think half the people care, or even know what 'good quality' is. Let's all buy vehicles we can't get parts for. China has 'em.
I about puked, when I found that my new 'Harley-Davidson' leathers were made in China. What's with that? [:@]
Old 11-14-2008, 10:17 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Well stay away from the 'Eagle Iron" stuff in the HD boutiques... they is made in Taiwan. Oh yeah... shocks.... Showa- Japan... electronics- Japan... heads cast by Yamaha-Japan. The myth is its past. HD used to be all american, right up until AMF bought them. What ya gonna do... as far as cheap prices go... WalMarts profits are up even in this economy. 99% of all their stuff is from China. You want to help stop the flow, shop small local stores that buy locally. The day I step into a HelMart is the day I put an american made bullet in my head!
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Old 11-14-2008, 02:04 PM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Old 11-14-2008, 06:25 PM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Well, I agree there is a lot of cheap stuff on the market, but so far when I look I find quality stuff: it just costs more. I count myself lucky I can afford it.
I have mixed emotions about the cheap stuff, like light weight, low strength doors, etc. I do realize there are some people who can afford nothing more and for whom these are a big step up. But I also realize the doors are not durable and in the end not a good solution and that alot of people don't know what they are buying and realy regret it.
Ultimately, its up to people to know what they are buying, so I blame the buyers mostly (I know its cruel, but I have the same attitude about anyone who gets tung buying a bad used car).
I recently replaced two doors in my home. I bought a solid oak routed-molding door with a tempered glass window and steel reinforcement for the back door on the first floor, pre-primed with a deep set primer and metal edging, for $550 bucks. Thing weighs a ton I had to have my son help me mount it, and it is rock solid it will be here after the house is gone.
While I was borrowing my son's pickup to hual doors, I also bought one of those cheap, plasticy, hollow doors as a storage room door on the third floor $24 bucks. I didn't care about the cost I bought the cheap door because it weighs next to nothing and I have to carry it up two and a half flights of stairs. I'll proibably open this door twice a year, so the fact that it is cheap is no big deal it fit perfectly and when painted, looks okay for the attic.
So, again, I like a market that has both ends covered. But the quality end is expensive. I don't think that is new always been like that.
Old 11-15-2008, 03:27 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Hi DeeVeeEight, I understand what your saying, where is the quality?

A few months ago I decided to change the cap and rotor in my Vette, I went to parts store "A" and they had the parts in there own box and it said made in Mexico, so I passed on that and went down the street to the next auto store. They had AC Delco in the same size box and it also said made in Mexico but at twice the price, so I bought that, but felt that it was the same quality but at twice the price. Did I get jiped? Probably!
I needed to replace a broken motor mount a while back, same problem, came in a AC Delco box but said on the mount "Made in India"

A few years ago I needed to replace my garage door. Carolina Overhead Door wanted $7000.00. The big box store had equal quality for $2500.00 installed with the opener included. Made by Wayne Dalton, it works fine, steel exterior with R 10 Value insulation.
Garage is heated to 55*.
Yeah, I knowwho needs to keep a car heated, buts that's what I wanted.

Had a sliding glass door from the dining room to the patio, got tired of that and installed steel French Double door. Something like Lee Willis got, double insulated with tempered glass.
Point is there is better quality in construction if you want to pay for it.

As far as the new homes, they slap up some 3/4 press board and put some wrap aroundthe pre formed frameand call it a day. This can be yours for only $225,000 in NC, OH! You want brick, well thats the same house but now costs over $450.000.

Now while on my rant, you could buy either of these homes with only3% down,and no credit check! But Wait you need furnature so the lender will give you a second mortage of $40,000 so you can buy furnature and while your at it go to the car dealer and get a new car on no credit check and no money down.
So now you have a beautiful home with a3% down mortgage, a second at5% and a new car at only $19.00 per month. Talk about the American dream come true.

Now reality sets in, after three years the first mortgage reset at 9%, that made the payment go from $500.00 per month to $1500.00.
The second mortgage went from $400.00 to $1200.00 and the car payment went to $399.00.
So who's to blame?
I'm a consumer and I saythe bank didn't explain it to me clearly!
Bank says it's right here in the contract that you signed!

I've worked 44 years andmy feeling were hurt when my friends and neighbors got something that I could not afford, but when I wanted it bad enough I saved and bought it, sometimes years later.
In this world we not only try to keep up with the "JONES" we want to be the "JONES."
When my neighbor says check out my flat screen TV and the 3 others I bought for the kids, it hurts my feelings for a moment, but I'm happy with what I've got.

While I'm at it, the GM bailout.

Are You Kidding ME?
GM never had a clue about what the American public wanted.
In 53 they put a 6 clyinder in a so called sports car, and priced it like a CadallicGet a grip!
If it wasn't for Ford'sintruduction of the 55 T Bird witha V-8 the Corvette would we just a memory.
Thank God they came up with the 265, and then figured out that a sports car should have a stick shift, windows that roll up and a top.
C-2's were the begining of a real sports car.
GM basicly kept the same frame and put the best body on a car that I've ever seen, those were the days when a C-2 and a C-3 could have a true Shoot Out.
GM made lots of money on those cars and the after market parts that they sold to keep me and many others buying everthing we could to go faster.

So what is going to keep GM going in the future?
I din't wan't my fathers Impal!
The 4 banger Hondas are quick, lets face it, if thay can keep up with a Vette with 4 cylindes and a turbo and still be daily drives we have compition.
So if we give GM 30 million and they bleed off 10 million a month what will happen in 3 months?
They will be back at the "WELL" again in 3 months.
Then what?

Dear Uncle Sam, I own 10 trucks but because the economy is slow I had to lay of 10 drivers, can you bail me out.
Answer: Sorry PG, you had a bad business plan, the lay off of only 10 people does not impact the economy enough for us to bail you out.

Oh thanks Uncle Sam, maybe AIG pays there people $1,000,000 a year so I should go broke while I tell my $40,000 per year people aren't worth it and they are all laid off.



Old 11-15-2008, 11:05 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

Here's my $0.013 (I used to have $0.02 but the stock market is down):

We used to make stuff here in the US and it was pretty good quality but the price was kinda high. You could buy the things that you needed and for the most part, they weren't crap. We didn't have an overabundance of stuff but we were happy with what we had. Everybody had a TV and a toaster and a microwave oven.

Skip to the 90s and the birth of the big box stores. One in particular started spreading all over the country placing a store within a 20 minute drive of almost everyone. They had a good thing going and were making a fortune. But a fortune wasn't enough. They quietly stopped advertising "made in America" and started getting goods from overseas. Profits went up and quality went down.

They grew so big that now they had some serious purchasing power. They didn't need to go to distributors or wholesalers to get merchandise, they could go directly to the manufacturer. Wanting to make ever more profit they started dictating what the manufacturers would make and how much they would sell it to big box for.

The manufacturers were starting to lose profit because big box was cutting their margins very thin. So the manufacturers started moving offshore to get cheaper labor. And cheap labor wasn't enough to fill they gap so they started cutting quality. The manufacturer couldn't just say no because then big box would just go to the next guy and the first guy would go out of business.

The other retailers that traditionally sold normal merchandise could no longer compete on price because they were still trying to sell quality stuff. Their only option was to become highly specialized in a market or start selling the cheap stuff from overseas as well.

The end result is that we have access to a broad range of merchandise at relatively low prices. Now everybody can afford to have four TVs and all kinds of cheap plastic gadgets. Why spend $50 for a pair of shoes at the shoe store when you can get a pair for $7.99 at the big box? Sure, they won't last very long and they don't look quite as good but hey, in six months when they fall apart you can just toss them in the trash and go get another pair. It's a trade off, and the consumers are as guilty as the big box stores for making it happen.

Old 11-17-2008, 10:33 AM
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Default RE: Quality of consumer goods in USA

You are dead on, with your post. The situation that we are in, we did to ourselves.
I've backed off on buying 5 cheap items, and purchase one good item. I try to throw my business to local people, rather that the big box stores.
If we want our economy to turn around, part of it will depend on buying U. S. items, and pass China and the rest of the orient to the trash bin. That's where it's all headed anyway.

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