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This was in response to wtw's post "Cowl Induction - Vacuum Actuator" but i figured i'd put it out where everybody could see it.
Wtw, I don't have any experience with those repro actuators and I have no idea what quality that particular part is but I just had to say something. Why and the heck do these companies that reproduce these parts keep putting out these inferior products (junk in many cases) yet continue to call them quality products. Seems to me that in many instances they put in 99.9% of the effort needed to making a good part and then just before its done they leave something out that makes all the difference. I have seen some good reproduction pieces but I've seen many more that were just plain high price junk. Let's all do this. When some company sends you a poor product that was advertised as being an excellent reproduction ( or some similar wording), let's all send it back with a BIG NOTE that says. "Me and the Boys ain't taking this crap No More" ........maybe the industry will finally get the hint........GT now, it is not my intention to start any particular supplier bashing here so don't guys, I am just stating some facts about reproduction parts in general throughout the resto industry
 

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Gary,
Seems to be more and more of this, and not just in our industry. Wally and I were talking about it this morning, it seems that you cant pay enough to get good stuff ! Has everyone gotten so gun-shy about price that they are just not capable of making a good piece, even when someone is willing to pay for it ? Then again, maybe that's the problem...most people are not willing to pay the price for quality. Notice I said most. The same goes for good service, most customers just dont give a crap any more as long as they get half way decent service. They are not willing to pay for excellence. I tend to blame the mail order places for some of it, they have beat the prices down so low, I dont see how any of the manufacturers are making any money. I think some of this is starting to turn around, maybe because the economy is good right now. I have seen more customers willing to pay the price to do it right. Hopefully the trend will continue and get into the manufacturing end also !

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Bill Koustenis
Advanced Automotive Machine
Waldorf Md

1971 Heavy Chevy - original owner
Team Chevelle #100
 

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GT/Bill,

Lack of quality is all around us! More times than not your fast food to go order will be incorrect! And you don't find out until your miles away! You have to know more than the tech at the discount computer store! The guy behind the counter at the parts store can't sell you a thermostat without seeing your cars build sheet! It goes on and on... I read this post tonight after walking out of a dinner house because the coctail waitress walked by our table 3 times in 15min without asking us if we wanted a drink! And there were only 4-5 couples in the bar! We were told it would be 45min before we would be seated for dinner and a cold beer would have tasted good! My wife talked with the manager and he said someone would be right over... Finally the waitress comes back in the room and goes over to several other tables. That did it for me and out the door we went! The manager tried to get us to go back and sit down, his words were "It will just be a few more min." Sorry for rambling but I needed to vent!

The way I see it worker bee's have other prioritys in their life, and work is an evil they must put up with to pay bills or go play. Listen to the advertisements we are subjected too!!! A ski resort near here beckoned "Ditch school and work and get up here and snowboard. There are less crowds on week days! We'll even fake a note from the Dr. to get you up here!" What kind of message is that to kid with a car and a buddy that don't work! See YA!

Back to repro car parts... I think most often a company sets out with a good part, (best worker fabs it up) it fits properly etc. Then its put into production and the good guy goes off and starts on the next new part. (R&D always has the best talant in the shop!) Next the company starts to grow and production becomes an issue. Gotta speed things up! Gotta cut material costs! etc. Combine that with workers that want to be somewhere else... You got it! Those aftermarket fenders don't fit correctly! I don't have the answers but somehow the youth of today need to get us back on track. I know not everyone is a hack or lazy or just doesn't care and I enjoy reading and seeing that when it comes to classic muscle cars there is hope "Personal Pride and Quality is still ALIVE" Now how do we infect the rest of the world with what is found here!

Dennis
 

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Maybe we need to start a Chevelle consumer reports page. List what you have purchased , Cost, Manufacture, and overall satisfaction with your purchase on a scale of 1 to 10.
 

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i sure don't know how we could do that without it turning into a legal issue but the need is sure there. sometimes parts work as well as their original counterparts but just don't look the same, in many cases it's an appearance issue. most of the small parts that i've purchased we're ok and it costs more to send them back then i paid for them. what if we go the other way and praise the companies that sell good stuff?? just my .02 john..
 

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I'm not a lawyer, but as long as we still have free speech and any "ratings" page carries sufficient disclaimers that the posts are just the personal opinions of the poster I don't see a problem. Obviously it would need to be monitored and any particularly venomous remarks removed, but we shouldn't ALL have to get burned by a particular vendor before we ALL know to avoid them. Where else are we to get such information without either learning the hard way or sharing among each other. Since I'm new at this, I need the benefit of everyone's experience. If I get burned, that trashes the budget and my teenage son must wait longer for his beloved Chevelle to hit the street.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Enjoying reading all of your comments guys.....all good ones......probably take a combination of all your ideas to make a good impact........GT
 

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The shame of this is that it is so pervasive in our culture. You can't even get quality when you want to pay for it. I just had an experience with finding large chunks of casting sand in a new 350 4bolt block. Somebody in Mexico where all those blocks come from did not bother to really look and see if the thing was clean. I can just imagine trying to fix an overheating problem when those pieces of "sand" were lurking unknown in the water jackets. This was the second block I picked up. The first one had noticeable, to the naked eye, casting problems that "slipped" thru quality control.

All this quality control trouble is caused by a mentality that is aimed a passing the problem on to the next guy. Even houses are being built that way. Build it a cheaply as possible, wait a few years while inflation drives the price up then sell for an infalted value. Qualtiy built in from the get go just lowers the profit morgin comin out the other end.

Whoever said "Reward the people who do it right" was DEAD ON
 

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Most people have forgotten these terms (union -made) & (American Made). If you buy something else with money that you earned in the USA than you deserve what you get.
 

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One experience I had that bucks the trend was for '67 Chevelle taillight bezels, which are a complicated piece. A local supplier had these long awaited pieces. They weren't exactly cheap, and yet the quality was only fair to good. Later on I checked with the supplier, and they informed me that they discontinued them. They told me better quality ones were due soon. When they arrived they cost more, but the quality was really impressive. This is probably an exceptional case though.
I guess as long as people shop by price, there will always be someone who can undercut by making it a little cheaper. It's nice to have a choice as to levels of quality, but usually there isn't enough volume to produce the parts as cheap as we would like.
 
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The bottom line is people don't care and the don't listen.

Don't believe that it's true, next time you get ready to pay for your meal at a local restaurant and the cashier ask how it was tell her it was the worst thing you ever ate, she will smile and reply "that's nice". The don't listen part.

Get vocal and get in their face, make them look you in the eye. I don't care if they think I'm a nasty grey haired bastard, they will pay attention while talking to them and they will remember me, I gaurantee it!

The real place to get vocal is at one of the numurous chevelle and muscle car shows where these vendors come to sell their junk. Go there and get vocal while the table is full of would be new customers, they don't care for that to much and will do almost anything to please you, but by then it is to late for me, I'm there to exact my pound of flesh!



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Wally
Gold #67
67 Malibu "Small Block"
90 SS454
71 Malibu "Small Block"
93 torch red vette
 

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Hey ken2 - when is the last time you were involved with a union that was concerned about "QUALITY' ???
Money and time off, yes, but quality was never a union issue in all my union years !
Modern American cars only improved their quality in the 80s and 90s because the Japs were kicking their asses on quality!
However, I agree, buy American whenever you can and quality is hard to find these days.

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Gotta have a Chevy !In Durham N.C.
Why is there never enough time or money to do it right the first time, but ALWAYS enough to do it over?
 
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