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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2003 :  09:44:45 AM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
... And devastate a community in the process.

Dec 12 2003
The Los Angeles Times
Burlington, Iowa -- ...
Rhum put in a dozen years touching up paint on school buses and organizing inventory so the assembly line never ran out of parts. The factory won repeat honors. Customers would request buses built in Iowa because they trusted the quality. "But in the end, that didn't matter," Rhum said. The plant closed in October 2002, knocking out 342 jobs.

"For the first time in my life, I realized that it doesn't matter how hard you work. It doesn't matter how many hours you put in. It doesn't matter how good the product is," Rhum said. "That's probably the toughest thing about this."


Click Here for story

Our BlueBirds, built in Mexico, were cheap enough to buy, but ended up becoming the most expensive buses our community has ever purchased. Constant repairs ate up any so-called purchase savings within a few years. The frames are fine but the bodies are breaking up, cracks growing ever slightly with each trip. They're headed for the junk pile years premature. (jk)


One of Murphy's Laws Of Work:
There is never enough time to do it right the first time, but there is always enough time to do it over.





PHW
Top Member

USA
1345 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2003 :  09:59:29 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
If they don't keep the quality up then people will go to whoever provides the best product.

Three basic priciples of business.

1. Customer satisfaction.
2. Safety.
3. Efficiency

Fail in anyone area, your out of business. A successful company succeeds at all three.


PHW

Child Check For Life
Chock Wheels For Life
Proud American For Life
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2003 :  1:16:45 PM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by PHW

... Three basic priciples of business.

1. Customer satisfaction.
2. Safety.
3. Efficiency

Fail in anyone area, your out of business. A successful company succeeds at all three.



Not necessarily. I'm thinking "Edsel," at the moment.

Junk does sell. And the 'average greedy' and ignorant buyers are the most vulnerable to being suckered. (jk)

Edited by - JK on 12/12/2003 1:17:22 PM
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Carpenter
Advanced Member

238 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2003 :  9:05:30 PM  Show Profile  Send Carpenter an AOL message  Send Carpenter an ICQ Message  Reply with Quote
That's Interesting about the Mexican-made Blue Birds being of poor quality.

Our Mexican-made Thomas buses have been of great quality, FAR superior to ones built in High Point or in the now-closed Woodstock plant. The fit and finish on the Mexican-made Thomas buses seems to be a lot better. The chassis on all of them are made in the USA...just the bodies in Mexico.

UNLAWFUL TO PASS WHEN RED LIGHTS FLASH
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2003 :  10:20:21 PM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Carpenter

... The chassis on all of them are made in the USA...just the bodies in Mexico.



Interesting. The chassis on our BlueBirds are excellent, made in the USA or Canada. The Mexico-made (or assembled) bodies are coming apart, cracks all over. Something about the metal, may be thinner. The wiring and panel layouts are different on some of the buses and didn't match the diagrams. What I don't get, is the single purchase of these buses seemed to have come from the same production, so what's with the wiring variences? Took some time and cost to put it all in order. (jk)

Edited by - JK on 12/14/2003 11:58:49 AM
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Carpenter
Advanced Member

238 Posts

Posted - 12/13/2003 :  11:14:48 AM  Show Profile  Send Carpenter an AOL message  Send Carpenter an ICQ Message  Reply with Quote
I've never encountered a Mexican Blue Bird, so I can't form a basis for comparison. I have only dealt with the Thomases

UNLAWFUL TO PASS WHEN RED LIGHTS FLASH
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B. Busguy33
Top Member

USA
3444 Posts

Posted - 12/13/2003 :  1:34:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit B. Busguy33's Homepage  Send B. Busguy33 an AOL message  Send B. Busguy33 a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote
We have 56 2001 International/Blue Birds that all arrived around the same time-frame. Half of them were built in Mexico and the other half were built in Iowa. Out of the two groups, the Blue Birds built in Iowa seem to have been built alot better than the Blue Birds built in Mexico. The buses from Mexico were in bad shape from day one (meaning the fit and finish on them were lacking).

Right now I think our Blue Birds from Mexico leak more than our Blue Birds from Iowa. We also have some older Blue Birds that were made in Canada and those are still in decent condition.

One big difference between the Iowa Blue Birds and the Mexico Blue Birds is the placement of switches. The Iowa Blue Birds have all of the switches placed in the correct locations, while the Mexico Blue Birds have some of the switches placed in other locations where they shouldn't have been placed.

I am very unhappy with the overall quality of our Mexico Blue Birds when compared to the Iowa Blue Birds of the same model year.

It's amazing how the quality of a bus can vary between two different manufacturing facilities of the same bus body manufacturer.
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JK
Top Member

USA
7307 Posts

Posted - 12/13/2003 :  3:56:59 PM  Show Profile  Visit JK's Homepage  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by B. Busguy33

... It's amazing how the quality of a bus can vary between two different manufacturing facilities of the same bus body manufacturer.



Yes, that's so true of buses and other products.

I know this is off the topic of buses but is not off the topic of quality. Regardless, everyone here probably has a PC and many may have a CD burner.

I make many CD's on our computers, and some CD's from the same brand name generate an abundance of coasters. Thought it was the CD writer but discovered all brands of CD's are made by a few factories and the brand stamped on it. Some brand-name discs that sell at premium prices are little better than the cheap brands. Where the CD's were made is what counts. I have a program that tells me where the CD's in a pack were made. Discs made by Prodisc Technology seem the worst for our specific writers. Discs made by Kodak, Mitsui Toatsuand and Taiyo Yuden seem very consistent and of higher quality. Also, Nero's burn proof software helps. Looking at replacing the older writers with veloCD or other burn proof hardware. Below is a free download for checking out your CD's. (jk)

Click Here to download CDR Media Code Identifier 1.63

Edited by - JK on 12/14/2003 12:00:34 PM
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