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Old 04-21-2009, 09:02 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airflow View Post
How come the spare parts are labeled with "made in USA"
and not made in Taiwan.

Tamiya parts have "made in the Philippines" markings because
they have a factory plant here in our country. So why cant
AE be honest? They can always put "designed in the USA".
Some parts are made in China, some in the U.S., some in Taiwan, etc. Not every part is made in the same country.

TC5 graphite is made and cut in the U.S. for example.
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Old 04-21-2009, 09:06 AM   #17
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This was the case in making my company's lexan bodies. They were done in the US and shipped to China for final assembly on chassis.
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Old 04-21-2009, 09:11 AM   #18
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I don't mind if stuff is manufactured in China as long as the U.S. company that's having their products manufactured in China have quality control processes in place to verify the products are up to spec. I think with all the problems China has had in the recent past with quality, it's only in their best interest to make sure they're producing quality products.
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Old 04-21-2009, 11:10 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apex View Post
I don't mind if stuff is manufactured in China as long as the U.S. company that's having their products manufactured in China have quality control processes in place to verify the products are up to spec. I think with all the problems China has had in the recent past with quality, it's only in their best interest to make sure they're producing quality products.


I'm not sure this is the case. My TC5 had a lot of slop in the axle/bearing/knuckle assembly both front and rear and also the ball cup/ball stud camber link assy. I ended up using Losi pieces to help fix the problem.
I think the Q.C. process is helped by big tolerances. It's easier and cheaper that way.
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Old 04-21-2009, 11:47 AM   #20
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Here is a good example: I collect watches and until i was properly informed many years ago I thought all watches marked swiss made were made in SA.
Then a freind emailed me photos of of the Rolex assembly plant in asia.
I then investigated further and found that only a small percent (less than 15%) of a watch has to be made in the country of orgin to be stamped as such.
Rolex builds their movments in house (sa.)for all models and ships the movt's to the factory in asia. they DO build All of their presidental line fully in sa and most of the watches containing prescious gems and or metals. So my stainless sub and EXPII are both 85% made in asia. One thing I can say Is the asians are GREAT at building things to spec for other countries/ firms and have incredible mfg. standards. Look at all the things Thunder tiger makes for the cell phone industry. Have you seen their plant pics? you could eat off the floor and the efficency.... don't even get me started. I think we in the US need to follow their lead...Think Novak....<good example, nuf said for now
I think I will go open a plant
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Old 04-21-2009, 12:44 PM   #21
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Yup.. that's how it goes. All our stuff is made in China but people never realize most of the thinktank work is done right here in Michigan in the USA. The Chinese do great work and our workers supposedly even have their own union to keep up working conditions without much outside interference.
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Old 04-21-2009, 06:34 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Hohwart View Post
Some parts are made in China, some in the U.S., some in Taiwan, etc. Not every part is made in the same country.

TC5 graphite is made and cut in the U.S. for example.
Ah ok. Made me feel better.
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Old 04-22-2009, 02:23 PM   #23
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All the best kits and RC products are made over seas by people in chains & shakles... all the known names even our names are slave names
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Old 04-22-2009, 08:21 PM   #24
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Old 04-22-2009, 08:56 PM   #25
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Taiwan and China are two different countries. Taiwanese build quality is much better.
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Old 04-22-2009, 10:21 PM   #26
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In a globalised economy it is hardly any surprise bits and pieces come together from all over the place to finalise a product.

The problem is therefore enhanced because often parts need to match within very narrow tolerance or else. This makes QC critical for such enterprises. The problem is attitudes about QC vary greatly from western countries (such as Switzerland, the Netherlands, or Germany) to SE Asian countries (or even Eastern European countries) and it's not all cultural. This is why the role of QC should be shouldered by the company putting their logo on the product, not various contractors supplying this or that. The consumer certainly thinks that way. If you buy a Mercedes and the gearbox fails, you're not going to ask if Fritz or Chen put it together, but take it up with Mercedes and make them accountable (not China or Germany)!

But this is a real problem. I have had this problem and was unpleasantly surprised to find one of my cars was made in Taiwan. And you could tell. Parts needed a lot of persuading to fit and some just could not be used, and had to be replaced by bits I pulled out of my treasure chest. And there's a very simple explanation for this. A lot of people think all you need to produce good quality parts is a CNC machine. So they go out and buy one, thinking they know how to use it because they read the manual. But the manual does not explain that the cutting tolerance on a CNC machine varies with the amount of coolant used in the cutting process for instance (let alone other more obvious factors). Turn the coolant a bit high or low and you have a problem. If production setup and QC is left up to people who don't understand what they're doing this is what you get. But as I said, I don't blame the Taiwanese, I blame Robitronic.

Assembling electronics on the other hand is easily done by robots, that's why electronics are made in countries where there is no tradition for electronics industry. All you need is some real estate where to build a big shed with controlled atmosphere and line up your robots and you're away, you can go sunbathe in the Carribean while your product is churned away on the conveyor belt.

Machining, molding, plastics injection are a little bit more complicated than that.

You need a certain polymer (huge research goes in here), you need certain temperatures, pressures, molds, catalysts, solvent release agents and so on. It's an entire chemical industry you need and you can't teach that to a robot or to people who have no experience with these things.

That is why, if you look at the Tamiya kits for instance you will see all the plasticky bits are made in Japan whereas electronics are made everywhere else.

That is why we prefer things to be made in countries where we know quality standards are not taken as a variable/optional quantity and product quality is as reliable as sunrise.

That being said, it is the job of the company moving production to wherever to insure their QC is up to scratch, so I don't think the country is to blame, but the companies. The problem is these companies don't move production, but outsource it, and that's different. Then, it is a completely different production company that produces your chassis, bulkheads, etc. But they produce these alongside motorcycles, tuktuks and ladies underwear, and that's where the problem is. They don't understand that your R/C car needs a different approach (and I doubt they are set up to deal with it anyway) so they just set up their machines and go cutting!

On the other hand, I would like to see my kit price follow the labour price when production is shifted to a country where this cost is 10 times smaller, and that has not happened yet for the cars I am looking at, so there.

I am very disappointed by companies who do shift production to SE Asia and do not inform the customer. I think it is dishonest and I move away from such companies because of this.

I am paying big money for my hobby and I like to get what I think I pay for and am let to believe I pay for. When I buy something I believe is made in Germany I buy it for the guarantee that comes with my experience of the german quality standard and nothing less will do. If I didn't need (and want) that, I would save 90% and buy whatever el cheapo.
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Last edited by niznai; 04-22-2009 at 10:59 PM.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:35 PM   #27
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What if AE releases a pure U.S. made TC5, same components and
materials and added $200 more to the original price, will anyone
buy this?

Or what if Tamiya have its TRF417 be made in China and still win the
World Championships? Will it still attract buyers even if it costs more
than the TRF416? Or imagine China clones of X-rayT2s and Tamiya 416s
competing in the worlds, will it get rc people to buy cheap clones?

I think, to a real racer it won't matter where it's made or even if the
quality is not good as long as it does whats it suppose to do-- win races.
To a hobbyist or a racer who heavily relies on the car more than his skill,
quality and country of origin will be an issue. To some hobbyist, building
a new highend kit is a glorious experience so parts quality, parts fitment
and a well illustrated manual is very important.

We are just forced to accept and buy what is available in the market.
If I just have the engineering skills and money, I will definitely design
and build my own car to the specs and materials that I want, do my
own R&D and testing. Then I wont have to complain about where it is
made, poor quality, incomplete parts, warranty, parts fitment, etc.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:41 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flatspunout View Post
To my knowledge all AE kits/parts production was moved to Taiwan after the Thunder Tiger acquisition...yep, your car was built by a 9 year old Taiwanese girl! I can't really say anything...I prefer for my cars to be built by 9 year old Slovakian girls True story: I went to a 4th of July fireworks show one year and they handed out little American flags for everyone to wave...I found a sticker on mine that said "made in China"...the irony wasn't lost on me

-rocky b

Not to sound patronizing or pedantic or anything.. but i find it offensive that you implying that TT or any other brand is using child labour. I know you mean it as a joke but some people could take it quite litterally.

I personally have to make sure daily that many of my suppliers comply with strict labour laws in China, TW and most countries in asia and this is not a big laughing matter.

Futhermore, if you even went to slovaquia or Taiwan, you would be surprised how modern and strict the laws are there.

So if we could just fight the common cliches for a bit, that would really help
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:48 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I12PonU View Post
Taiwan and China are two different countries. Taiwanese build quality is much better.
Taiwan, China, Vietnam or whatever.. it s the engineering and the quality control that matters: and that s the hardest part.

All the countries in the world can crank out injected parts or aluminium parts properly. It s really how those people are trained, their industrial expertise and skills.. it takes a lot of time for that to develop.

its a moot point anyways, many factories is guandong province - south of china (where a lot of rc components are subcontracted) are owned by..Taiwanese companies.
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Old 04-22-2009, 11:53 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patriiick View Post
Not to sound patronizing or pedantic or anything.. but i find it offensive that you implying that TT or any other brand is using child labour. I know you mean it as a joke but some people could take it quite litterally.

So if we could just fight the common cliches for a bit, that would really help

That's not implying, it's down right saying it out loud (hope I got all the affirmatives in there). Which is a pretty clear hint he's just joking.

Beating the clichees is easier if the reason they exist in the first place was removed.

Quote:
What if AE releases a pure U.S. made TC5, same components and
materials and added $200 more to the original price, will anyone
buy this?

Or what if Tamiya have its TRF417 be made in China and still win the
World Championships? Will it still attract buyers even if it costs more
than the TRF416? Or imagine China clones of X-rayT2s and Tamiya 416s
competing in the worlds, will it get rc people to buy cheap clones?

I think, to a real racer it won't matter where it's made or even if the
quality is not good as long as it does whats it suppose to do-- win races.
To a hobbyist or a racer who heavily relies on the car more than his skill,
quality and country of origin will be an issue. To some hobbyist, building
a new highend kit is a glorious experience so parts quality, parts fitment
and a well illustrated manual is very important.
This is a non-problem. People want cheap, good quality goods. If your product ticks the box, then you're selling no matter what.

Problem is, in the past and present some really woeful quality products come out of China and SE Asia, so people are cautious. It is their money they're spending after all and they have the right to demand a certain level of quality, reliability and reproducibility/interchangeablity. Meet these standards and you're in!

True, there are policies that may limit your choice but these work against competition more often than not and end up hurting the consumer they're supposed to protect in the first place (see the US car market and industry and you know the result).

But I don't think that's the case in R/C. Here, everybody would like to have an Xray for the price of a lollipop. The problem is you have to convince the customer that your product is just as good or better even if it's half the price.

This has not happened yet.

What has happened is that some companies have shifted production outsourcing it in SE Asia and they didn't utter a word about it or went beating around the bush with spin mumble-jumble such as "designed in (insert country of high reputation for quality products of choice)" or used legal cheap trickery such as mentioned above which allows you to label something made wherever you want only on condition that a certain percentage of contents is actually made there.

I consider such manouvres cheap trickery, I despise the companies who pull such stunts and think they are just worthy of contempt, not my money.

But that's not the end of it.

All these companies have of course kept the prices they sold their kits for before actually moving production to a low labour cost country, so no savings were passed on to the customer. This was just so the companies would increase their profit margin, which is fine by me and I don't care as long as the quality does not go down. The problem is I think quality went down in a few cases, and I am very interested to see what happens next. My guess is that some companies will suffer and I hope it's those who deserve it. Or they'll lift their game which is even better because we all win.

Quote:
We are just forced to accept and buy what is available in the market.
If I just have the engineering skills and money, I will definitely design
and build my own car to the specs and materials that I want, do my
own R&D and testing. Then I wont have to complain about where it is
made, poor quality, incomplete parts, warranty, parts fitment, etc
This is just plain wrong and shows a lack of understanding of the attitude towards customers in western countries. We DON"T have to do anything. We CAN buy or NOT. The producer will get the message clear and loud when they don't sell.

Complaining about quality is a right and an obligation. It is what ensures we don't waste our money (and the planet's resources) on crap and that is why it is legislated in the west (and the reason we are suspicious of anything coming form countries where it is not legislated). Legislation tends to make people less tolerant to quality issues and companies have to lift their game or perish in a competitive environment (again a sign of suspicion when something comes from a country where there is no competitive free market). When people churning out crap will understand this, they'll have less returns and make more money wherever they are.
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Last edited by niznai; 04-23-2009 at 01:39 AM.
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