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sailor1845

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Asian Imports are PURE JUNK! I had two that a client purchased new for my use and they did not hold up for very long. Both were inaccurate and constantly breaking down. Finally I purchased an old Logan 2555V and it is doing exactly what I need it to do with no problems. I would rather have a old used machine, than a new China made JUNK.

A local machine shop purchased two rather large China made lathe's and within three months both broke down and it took over a month to get the parts for the repairs.
They finally resurrected the old lathes these China made lathes replaced. They now sit in a rear section of the shop, probably never to be used again. That was a VERY expensive lesson.

Buy American, the job you save may be your own !
 

ttabbal

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Remember when we heard that about Japan back in the day? One of the "Back to the Future" movies even made a joke about it.

China makes just about everything. They can make quality, but it costs close to what it costs to make the same quality elsewhere. They are just willing to go lower on the quality and the price than many places. And people choose to go cheap, or the importers do to increase margins. Almost nothing is 100% US made these days, sadly. Particularly things that this forum is about. I'm not aware of any hobby sized and priced lathes made in the US. I'm sure there are a few industrial machines out there, but a hobby user could not afford them. Even that is drying up as there's not a big market for manual machinery. There are probably a few CNC manufacturers, but the prices are not hobby friendly. We aren't the target market, so it makes sense.

Most of these posts remind me of ham radio guys complaining about the Chinese radios. Most of them test fine for our use and it gets more people willing to try the hobby. But the old timers complain about it. Enough to drive new people away. Most of the time they haven't the slightest idea the other side is using one till they say they are.

Do we want more hobby machinists? We aren't going to get many if we require a 10k investment up front to even try it out. And the fact is, most of us here have at least one import machine. Encouraging people to pay a little more for a known better quality importer like PM or even Grizzly is doable. But much more is going to drive people away. Besides, this is supposed to be the friendly machinist forum.
 

darkzero

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Many people have made good accurate parts on Asian import machines including me. I've had my China machines for 10 yrs now & none of them have broken down on me. Sure China makes junk, whose fault is that, but they can make decent products too if they are paid to. USA makes junk too. Taiwan & Japan are Asia also & they make great quality machines these days.

Some people don't have the option of buying used USA. Also not very many options of buying new USA machines that are not CNC if at all these days. If it weren't for affordable machines, many people would not be able to enjoy machining as a hobby. If one needs machines for production work, spend the money on something better, Chinese is not the best option but also not unheard of.

BTW, this site welcomes everything no matter what the cost or size. That's fine if you have a dislike for China but bashing them here is not welcome.
 

higgite

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You used the words "client" and "local machine shop" in the OP which leads me to believe that you aren't talking about typical hobby applications or duty cycles that most of us on the forum deal with. Are these industrial type or hobby oriented machines that your trashing?

Tom
 

Winegrower

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It is not possible to generalize with any accuracy, but I’ll give it a try. I have spent my 50 year career in technology product development, and have worked extensively with quality control and improvement efforts. I was surprised to learn from actual data that most customer complaints, and by most I mean more than half, stemmed from customer actions or inactions based on incomplete understanding of either the product or what they were trying to do with it. Frequently reading the manual would have avoided the reported problem.

So I take with some skepticism the idea that all (fill in the blank) are junk. Certainly quality can vary by supplier, and by price. But frankly, most products do about what they are designed to do, at the price point they are designed for. If it doesn’t do what you want, it’s probably not the right product choice. Managing user expectations might be necessary.

But otherwise, that’s what a warranty period is for.
 

savarin

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Chinese manufacturers will produce any product you desire for a price you want.
My Asian generic 9x20 was purchased purely on price with the understanding it was an assembled kit of parts.
The first thing I did was to tear it down and clean and adjust everything I could.
I am not a trained machinist but have managed to turn out some very precise components for my projects.
I realise I am not in a production environment but there was no way I could afford a larger better quality lathe so for me it was the only way I could get into this hobby.
Thankyou cheap Chinese lathe manufacturers.
 

kb58

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China makes machinery as good as ours, and guess what, most won't pay for the quality units. Instead, we demand the lowest price and then complain about the consequences. Huh.
 

C-Bag

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There is another forum for disparaging tools that aren't up to "standard". Here we try to help everyone get the results they want with the machines they have.

Cheers,

John
Two thumbs up John.

Like so many before I might have bought American if they hadn't already "outsourced" and everything around here wasn't sky high, old as dirt and wore out. As a hobbyist like CSN&Y said gotta "love the one you're with".
 

savarin

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I didnt like the fact he canted the blades to check them as to my way of thinking that will allow a bent blade to wander off square but in reality what do I know.
I thought to check a square you place in on a straight edge and scribe a line then flip it over to scribe another line on top of the previous line.
If they are the same the square is good.
 

Nutfarmer

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Made in the US is no guarantee for quality. Purchased a new shaker made in Washington State that was a 145,000 dollar pile of junk. Had to spend two days tightening bolts and hydraulic fittings before it was useable. What is important is the company you are dealing with ,if they will stand behind their product. The company that built this has been lost in action.. Their idea of a repair of a three inch pin that was supposed to be a slip fit was to beat on it with a sledge. By from a company that has a reputation for taking care of their customers no matter where it is made.
 

stioc

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I never even bothered leveling, adjusting or cleaning anything but everything I've been able to make has turned out accurate to the dimensions I wanted. Just last night I turned something in the 3 jaw chuck and then checked the run-out with an indicator, it was .0005" good enough for this hobbyist.

If it wasn't for the cheap Chinese products I'd probably never own anything in my signature because the quality equivalent of those would probably require a second mortgage not play-money.
 

Bob Korves

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I cannot seem to see the comment. How far down is it?
Here is my reply to the video, for what it's worth, Eric...:

----
Proverb: "Man with one watch knows what time it is."

Evaluating your testing: To find out how accurate a company makes their tools requires a number of samples from different days/weeks/months/years of production, randomly chosen by uninterested persons. All vendors would need to be treated exactly the same. A significant number of samples would be needed. Then, all of the samples would be individually tested, and then be rated by best and worst single sample (maximum differences from perfect,) and also the average mean, median, and mode variances of each vendor's products. That would be a big and expensive job, and would still only relate to the actual samples tested, saying absolutely nothing about the huge number of products, from long production intervals, which were not tested. Showing one sample from each vendor is a complete waste of time for learning anything actually useful about the makers. Lyle, you did a very nice job of working with what you had on hand...
----
 

C-Bag

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Thanks Bob, I couldn't find it either. Of course you are right and I agree with Savarin, that turning at an angle has gotten me in trouble for no good reason once I stopped to think. The thing that kinda makes me sad is I really respect Mr. Pete he was my first online teacher. I know we have huge differences in our views of the world but I felt like he kinda fluffed over the fact that $1 Chinese trisquare was scary accurate especially against the modern US made trisquare.

I also acknowledge you are so right Bob. One of the biggest beef's I've had with Chinese made is consistency.

And also wholeheartedly agree with Nutfarmer. I worked for a foreign owned fruit and veg processing co as my last wage slave tour and it was humiliating being forced to shove junk out the door because we had to. And even more humiliating to have to go out on service calls to try and patch blatantly faulty designs that needed to be replaced. Add to that their policy was to hire temps to fill the force when we had big contracts and fire them usually right before Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Its ironic the Japanese were in the same boat quality wise until Dr. Deming taught them quality and even more ironic none of US big biz wanted anything to do with his teaching.
 

pontiac428

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Bob, you are absolutely correct about sample size and statistical significance. You would really need seven of each to attain 95% accuracy (degrees of freedom for a t-value of .95), which would really narrow your certainty down about which is better because the result will be biased toward the true measurands, in this case "straight" and "square". But do not underestimate the value of a grab sample, as Mr. Pete has done. He used random chance for each sample- they were what he had, random from the others made before and since. The relative difference turned out to be very small, which would naturally grow smaller as the sample population grows. Errors would occur on both sides of the true value, so positive and negative to square, meaning the central tendency for a large population will be close to true square. Any variance will be deviation from square, so the average should also be true square. At the end of the day, I'm just surprised at how comparable the squares really were. I have two Chinese ones that move around when I tighten the thumb screw. I have a Lufkin that is rigid and repeatable, but not very true. I was beginning to think that all combo squares were crap. Maybe I need a Starrett...
 

epanzella

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It's never a good idea to generalize. I had the exact opposite experience as the OP. I had an 11 inch Logan that was tired and just would not make accurate parts without a file and sandpaper. I got a Grizzly import lathe and it's been both accurate and trouble free. (except the one time I crashed it but parts came in a week)
 

sailor1845

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One of the lathes I had was a Grizzly and it was a problem from day one. Zenith had a motto. " Quality goes in before the name goes on" The Chinese changed that to " Quality goes out and then we put a quality name on it". As I have stated before, I would rather have a 50 year old USA made tool, than a new China made tool. There are no junk yards in China, They send it all here.

Buy American, The job you save..... May be your own!
 

sailor1845

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I am dead serious. I HATE all Asain products. I lost all my teeth to a defective China made wrench. Broke my knee cap due to a defective sledge hammer (Mexican made). So now you can see I am serious.
 
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