Who Makes The BEST Appliances?

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snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz wrote:

Hmmm, Chrysler engineers were good. Marketing people ruined the company early on.
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On 03/04/2010 11:48 PM, snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz wrote:

Not always. the Dart/Valiant from the mid-60's until the introduction of the Aspen/Volare was the definition of reliable basic transportation.
Of course, they screwed up the Aspen/Volare badly. I remember as a kid the neighbors across the street bought one, the front fenders were already rusted through at two years old...
nate
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Nate Nagel wrote:

The slant six was great, and would easily outlast the body. Here in salt country, Darts from that era had trouble with the hardpoints for the leaf springs rusting out. Saw many a tired Dart or Valiant crabbing down the road with one side on the rear riding real low.
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On 03/05/2010 07:49 PM, aemeijers wrote:

I don't really remember that. I *do* remember shoveling bondo into the front fenders of my dad's beater Valiant to pass inspection (twice a year, back in those days.)
The only place I found any rust on my own '67 was under one of the torsion bar mounts. It'd lived most of its live in NC though, although it did show evidence of having being driven on the beach. A welded piece of sheetmetal and some Krylon fixed 'er right up.
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wrote:

ANd my neighbor had one up here in the salt belt that was 12 years old and had 300,000 miles on it - not a spot of rust. First thing he had done when he bought it was have the sponge rubber between the fender and the fender baffle removed when he had it rustproofed. There was an aftermarket seal that could be installed inplace of the sponge rubber IIRC.
Stupid little detail like that ruined the car. Of course, there were OTHER problems with the Ashbin as well. Not one of the best cars Chrysler built. But not the worst car produced in North America at the time either.
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He got a good one. They had trouble with rust when new at the dealer's lot sometimes.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Early AMC hornets/gremlins had a similar problem. There was a shelf or lip up inside front fenders where salt-laden road crud would build up until it was pressing against the inside of the top of fender outboard of hood crack. Very bad design.
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That wasn't the only vary bad design in the AMC Gremlin. Been down that road.
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On Thu, 04 Mar 2010 22:48:47 -0600, " snipped-for-privacy@att.bizzzzzzzzzzzz"

Lots have gone well over 300,000 in courier service, even up here in the rust belt. Other than the leading edge of the hoods, most Chrysler bodies stand up quite well - particularly compared to the small GMs
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wrote:

Come back when you have stats that show that all, or most, 05 Caravans have that issue.
Oh, and blow your nose!
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snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

Walk through any parking lot here in salt country, and look closely at the front edges of the hoods on the 01-07 generation mopar minivans. Lots of them have the little bubbles in the paint showing, where rust is forming in the 3-layer part where hood skin folds over the inner panel. Body shop I went to for an estimate says it is a dirt-common problem with this series. Gotta go down south or buy new to get a clean replacement hood. Bad engineering- underhood road splash gets in at the back of the inside lip, and gets down in there. Even a bead of sealant along there at the factory, before painting, would have helped a bunch.
'Decontenting', I think they call it. My sliding doors do not have the water barrier and sound deadening the manual shows. On the dash, they moved the rear wiper controls and defroster switch down into the HVAC pod to simplify the assembly process, compared to the easy-to-find-with-your-fingers high location the 01-04 had. And don't even get me started on leaving off the key cylinders for all but driver's door and hatch.
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Bob Villa wrote:

Hmmm, 15 year old Saturn has generator?
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Nit-picky ain't we?!
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On 03/04/2010 06:56 PM, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

Meh? My dad got 300K out of a '67 Cutlass, and would have had it for more had not the frame rusted out over the rear axle. Thing still looked pretty good, too, had I known then what I know now (that is, the traditional RWD small to midsized coupe wouldn't ever be made again for a reasonable price, nor be as easy to work on/maintain) I would have had him stash it away in Grandpa's barn for me until I was old enough to drive, whereupon I would have crawled underneath it with a welder and fixed 'er all up.
At least I imposed on him to let me play with his (previously Grandpa's) '73 Chevy pickup truck rather than give up on that one too, which he still has and drives regularly to this day. That one has had the engine replaced, but I believe that the rest of the drivetrain except for normal wear items is still original.
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wrote:

Those results are far from typical. How many 67 cutlasses went 300k? What was the AVERAGE service life?
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wrote:

The way those things rusted, you'd need to be an awfull good welder!!!!. To weld something, you need something to weld TO.

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On Thu, 04 Mar 2010 18:56:30 -0500, salty wrote:

Was it the fault of the product that it needed those tuneups etc., or the fault of the owner for not doing them? I've run lots of old vehicles and yes, they need more routine maintenance than a modern vehicle - but most of it is *easy* maintenance: the parts are cheap and the jobs are easy (mostly because engine bays aren't packed out with plumbing and shielding like they are on modern stuff)
I don't think the mechanical side's much of an issue - it's just that people were either lazy or didn't want to invest the time to keep up with the maintenance. It's the corrosion that's the real problem, and some vehicles do better than others - some brands used really poor-quality steel, others didn't provide any undersealing etc.
Overall, though, I'll take more-frequent maintenance and repairs that I can do cheaply myself over less-frequent but more expensive ones that I have to dump on someone else any day.

... and brakes, batteries, plugs, timing chains/belts, maybe an alternator or clutch or exhaust in that timeframe too - all the same stuff that was true 30 years ago.
Starter motors do seem to last a lot longer, and ring / bore wear is less of a problem than it once was - but overall I don't think a lot has changed, really *providing maintenance is kept up with* - it's just got more expensive when it does break. Heck, the recommended oil change interval is 3000 on our Toyota, and that's no different to stuff 30 or 40 years ago either.
cheers
Jules
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On Fri, 5 Mar 2010 13:54:26 +0000 (UTC), Jules Richardson

TObviously the fault of the product, as modern cars don't need so much fiddling to keep them running.

Through the 1980's, aftermarket rust protection coatings (Ziebart, Rusty Jones, etc) were a BIG revenue stream for car dealers. Many dealers would rustproof every car in inventory as soon as they got it, so that you couldn't buy one without it. That business went the way of buggy whips. Cars just don't need it now.

In 1967, a car with 80,000 miles was considered OLD.
Cars today on average live about twice as long with substantially fewer problems during their service life.
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On Mar 5, 9:09am, snipped-for-privacy@dog.com wrote:

Most of the improvements that have a positive effect on longevity (save for rustproofing) could easily be retrofitted to those older vehicles, if there were a market for retrofit kits.
- replace carburetors with EFI (would require little more than replacing the carb/intake with a throttle body and aluminum intake with injector bungs, also welding bungs on the downpipes for O2 sensors. Electronics could be hidden in the pass. compartment. The real sticking point is developing the software for each different engine type.)
- Retrofit points type distributors with ones with electronic pickups, or just slap something like an MSD box on which would greatly increase point life.
- Upgrade front brakes from drum to disc.
Other than the EFI thing, there are already aftermarket kits readily available for many American cars to do exactly what I am suggesting, and radial tires, uprated sway bars and dampers, and a few other well chosen replacement parts for wear items will do wonders to make an old car feel modern.
This isn't done on a widespread scale because most people would rather just have a new car, so there isn't a widespread market for this kind of work. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing really depends on who you ask.
nate
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wrote:

Actually, drum brakes are much superior to discs for the FIRST stop. Discs just handle repeated stops (heat) better. Drum brakes had adjustment issues but generally lasted as long as or longer than discs.

There are EFI kits available as well. Lots of "pro touring" modifications in the street rod world too.

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