LOL, When Honda "Cars" were introduced into this country the existing Honda
motorcycle dealers had first crack at the franchises, but there was a catch.
Sound familiar? ;~)
The dealers had to eventually decide to sell motorcycles or automobiles but
not both from the same dealership.
I don't necessarily agree with that. When I go into a Chevy dealer, they
have cars that are tens of thousands of dollars apart in price. Size,
features and options all come into play and to me anyway, that translates
into a noticeable difference in quality. Only consideration is that much of
the auto industry is regulated as to safety so they have to meet some level
of standards, much more so than a table saw manufacturer.
But, to put this part of the discussion to rest, I agree with you at a
certain level that General's two lines can confuse some people who are not
as completely informed as they might be. I'm certainly glad I'm past that
point. I probably should be aspiring to an even higher level of tool
knowledge and consider some of the European lines of tools, but until I have
that kind of money, I'm not even going to consider it. :)
I guess it has to do with how each of us defines quality. Size,
features and options does not do it for me. If each of those cars is
made in factories that have the same philosophy with regard to the
statistical capability of each of the processes that make and assemble
the parts, the quality level in my view is the same regardless of the
size, features and options. In the case originally sited about
woodworking machinery, that is not the case. There is a distinct
difference between the statistical capability to produce good parts
and assemble good units. If they are branded in a way that the
individual confuses the two, the top will eventually suffer. Watched
it happen up close and personal.
Wasn't commenting on your personal ability to distinguish, only said
that it is a statistical reality that the population in general cannot
or chooses to be fooled.
True, but different quality levels has always been a part of industries that
attempt to appeal to a broad customer base. There have always been
companies that sell economy, mid and high end products. I submit that the
bigger reason that the high end products suffer is that the mid tier has
risen in quality and affordability, thus displacing the high end. In many
cases, the high end has simply come down due to access to the customer -
read, the likes of the BORGs. Volume purchasing has made what was once out
of touch, now available.
Staying with the thread being about about tools, I think in context
this is probably spot on. I remember when you used to buy Rockwell
brand tools WHEN you could afford them. They made 2 regular circular
saws that were used by professional carpenters when I started out in
'72. The 315 was a 7 1/4" saw, and the 346 was their "trim" model
that housed a mighty 6 1/2" blade. They had some other specialty
saws, but for the most part, if you bought a Rockwell saw for
carpentry work, you bought one of those two.
Across the board, Rockwell's products were good, to great quality.
They catered to the professional, period. In 1975, the first year I
could afford a Rockwell 315 in all its glory, it was $135 bucks! Look
at the price of circular saws today to get a good reference. While
typing this, I remember too, I didn't take that home in a week.
As they changed their marketing approach (sale of assets, change in
ownership, change of direction, etc.) they changed and made a
homeowner/hobbyist line. It was crap. Pure, unadulterated crap. But
that engineering crept into their other lines and we started seeing a
lot more plastic and a lot less fit and finish.
Here's where it ties into Frank's post.
On the jobsite, we never differetiated between any models Rockwell
made. Even though they used better standards to make their pro line,
it was never brought up. In about 24 months, the general consensus
was that Rockwell "had gone to shit". Period.
That is what pushed me to buy my first Milwaukee tools. To me, even
though Rockwell was around for many more years and in some cases
making good tools, I didn't want anything else to do with them as I
felt like I couldn't trust them to not cheapen a tool I was relying on
to make a living.
That's how I feel about Porter Cable. It used to mean something. Their
old production routers didn't know how to quit.
Now, in some cases, when a PC router is a part of a package, it will
have a bearing-rebuild package available right away.
IOW, "here's your router... btw, it might behoove you to take some of
these bearings now, because they WILL fuck up tout-suite."
I was glad to see an affordable circular saw become available with the
blade on the left without having to drop big bucks on a worm drive.
In my peculiar situation, cutting 12' strips along a fence, that set-
up was something I thought would help me. So I bought the left-blade
Porter Cable. I already had a couple of regular saws, like my
Milwaukee and an old genuine Skill.
I looked at that PC and saw a cast magnesium shoe, quick- toolless
blade change, all looked nice.
It would have been nice if there had been some mechanical connection,
besides a piece of pop-can tin, that held that good-looking shoe to
the motor part. What a piece of shit. That thing flexed and wobbled
and made the worst cut I had ever seen. Just a minor bit of applied
pressure and the blade would angle an easy 5+ degrees on it's own free
Good idea, lousy execution a la PC profile sander and PC 500 pocket
I have, since, written off PC as a brand worth considering for
anything serious. Same with Ryobi, Craftsman, DeWalt (with a couple of
exceptions) Black and Decker, Skill..and Bosch was teetering for a
while there too, but they seem to have found their feet again.
If I WANT a piece of shit, I will drive to the Piece-O-Shit store and
BUY, knowingly, a piece of shit.
It is no wonder that the likes of Fein and Festool, Milwaukee and
Makita, Bosch and Metabo are selling tools. (Caveat: NONE of them are
perfect, as not ALL the products from the 'DISLIKE' category are crap.
There are always exceptions.)
my $ 0.0204 worth.
SNIP of good stuff
Can I get an AMEN on the snippage? I feel like just about any tool
these days I buy has a timer on it as to when it will crap out. I
know there are a lot of defenders of their favorite tools, but most
are just usable junk.
And I agree with both of them. Not sure about the other 0.0004,
There is truth in what you say, yet it is still bothersome to see the
shifting of previously distinct companies into corporate conglomerate
marketing agendas. The essence is that names mean little today.
Ok, so the website's set up for 600x800, fixed width. There's lots of
"neat web design" junk on it. Other than that, what do you want us to
You'll have to tell us what you're referring to, I cannot read your
mind. Do you think Performax tools are going down in quality? Are you
saying they're doing better?
Marching to the beat of a different drum is great... unless you're in
You could have read the post. You and Greg could both benefit from spending
half as much time learning as responding. Performax, as indicated in the
original post, is a respected brand name purchased by a conglomerate who has
rebadged its products and taken the good name into the cheap end of the
It's certainly nothing new, buying out the competition to get his patents,
but it is sort of sad to see the name which stood for quality dragged rather
Look, you insolent fart, I ordinarily overlook rude transgressions,
but since you again call me out by name, I have to comment that I
spend 80% of my time "learning". Including 7 programming languages,
several whose OS API's change on a semi-monthly basis, as well as
rebuilding a house, civil tort law, maintaining pets, electronic and
digital design, keeping up with the demise of this country's economy,
and the blow by blows on the idiots elected to office. I also manage
to fit in some woodworking now and then. Not to mention keeping up
with the "public service" clowns who have tried to do me in for the
last 20 years as they try to conceal bribery, subversion of the legal
system, arson, insurance fraud, drug dealers, threats and collusion to
protect one dead, illiterate serial arsonist son of an overpaid
ex-school board attorney, his ex-chief superior court judge law
partner, a couple of bribe taking state judges, a collusive bar
association, a crony senator, an ex-school board superintendent that
has been run out of 3 different school systems around the country for
various improprieties, his child molesting, asshat son, a shifty navy
recruiter, Newt, a crony Florida NeoCon state rep, that crap from
Texas, legions of sycophants, and a drunken, lying, knife wielding
psycho charged with felony assault and her meddling mother - all of
whom cost me many tens of thousands of dollars and decades of life.
All arrogant, redneck SOB's as well. Not being a pantywaist, I won't
put up with it from them, nor from some anonymous clown on Usenet.
Alas, scraping all this shit off my shoes leaves little time to
substantiate your one line assertion of WMH Tools effect on yet
another corporate reputation. No one in this area sells Performax,
I've never been to their web site, and considering the fact that I've
changed technical careers 3 times in the past 20 years, have watched,
up close and personal, at least 6 electronics companies fail and just
about everything else vacate the country in lieu of cheap labor in a
communist slave labor nation, I don't think it is unreasonable to
request a minor definition of exactly what you're complaining about
with this line:
It is called "conversation." You could have included the statement,
"just look at their web site for details" and all would have been
good. but you resort to repeated personal affronts. Even them learnin
book thangs have references and footnotes to substantiate their vague
assertions for the benefit of those busy academics who must plod
through them. As for me, I've already wasted 10 minutes typing this
pointless screed, and I'm done.
But while we're resorting to ad hominem attacks, you could benefit
from learnin' some ordinary manners, upping your Thorazine script, or
At the risk of rising to the (regularly recurring) motions of a
Garcia/Mitchell 500, Norm is the only guy I know who can actually do
something useful with his tools. (Stop with the snickering, you
juvenile wankers...) Although I've never built anything from the
show, I have watched every episode of NYW and most of the TOH series.
I have propped up their sponsors with many purchases, however, so I
suppose he is doing his job. Yet compared to the deluge of utterly
superficial and narcissistic BS on television, Norm and Silvan et al.
are a breath of fresh air. Even though I've already done the kitchen
remodel thing, and was rather disappointed to see than the majority of
this year's episodes are about remodeling Morash's kitchen, I'm still
waiting for 10:30AM Sunday to add the 20th season to my CD collection.
All eminently more pleasant than your average pettifogger or politico.
An unmarked black envelope showed up in my postal box 5 years ago. It
turned out to contain my most prized possession; a signed photo of the
Nahm himself: (Which is WAAAY better than the photos of Newt Gingrich
with which I line the bird cage and wipe up spilled shellac.)
I have religiously followed his sage advise for the past 6 years - to
the chagrin of everyone I know. Went to Old Sturbridge Village this
summer despite not being particularly fond of the style of many
Maybe someone could convince PBS to buy the rights to broadcast the
older WoodWorks episodes as well. I'll certainly never pay the toll
required to watch the DIY ad network.
Happy 20th Norm - Seriously. Here is hoping for 20 more.
I'll agree, Norn and the Silvan brothers are still very credible. I have
been recording the American Woodshop with Scott ????. He has been around a
very long time also and seems to be going backwards, fast. I am sure he
could perhaps out do me but the stuff on his show reminds me of the other
guy on WoodWorking, not David on Woodworks, the guy that insists on calling
his SCMS a Radial Arm Saw.
Scott built and donated 2 library tables to an old hotel that is being
renovated and turned into a library. The guy in charge insisted on
completely covering the table tops with stone after Scott "slopped" on 3
coats of Shellac and a coat or two of varnish on the tops. From a distance
the tables looked "OK" without the stone tops hiding the finish.
Of all the shows I've seen, on PBS or HGTV, Norm et al. and David
Marks are the cream. The massive proliferation of half-hour refurb and
landscaping shows, for the most part, are an abomination. Mass
marketed fluff that is poorly conceived, demonstrates dangerous work
methods and poor quality workmanship. But to each his own...
I've only seen a few episodes of Router Workshop & American Woodshop.
Our PBS affiliate doesn't seem interested in carrying them long term.
Norm has been the only long term player. The RW is a tool in search of
a problem sometimes best solved by application of another tool, and AW
is a bit down home and rustic. Of the two, I find AW preferable.
But that Scott fellow on HGTV is a dweeb. I find it amazing that he
has survived this long, counter to Darwin's Law.
But Leon, I suspect my photochopped image has assaulted a sacred cow.
No worries, all in fun. You've gotta have a pretty thick skin to
survive notoriety these days. People can be so cruel and petty. ;-)
Sad part is, who will replace him when he hangs up his tool belt.
Even more sobering, will we still be around when he does.
On Sat, 5 Jan 2008 15:44:25 -0500, "Buddy Matlosz"
This day is called the feast of Nahm:
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when the day is named,
And rouse him at the name of Nahm.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Nahm:'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars.
And say 'These wounds I had on Nahm's day.'
Old men forget: yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember with advantages
What feats he did that day: then shall our names.
Familiar in his mouth as household words
Morash the king, Silva and Trethewey,
Cook and Gallant, Dee and Roy,
Be in their flowing cups freshly remember'd.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Nahm Nahm shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remember'd;
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in Nahmland now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Nahm's day.
(my vaguest apologies)
tjwatson1ATcomcastDOTnet (real email)
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