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Old 06-15-2013, 02:10 PM   #21
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Like Coot' the manufacturing segmant has been my adult life also. The workers simpy do what they are told to do. What drives only fair instead of great rv quality is the P&L spreadsheet.

The one thing that will drive quality up is when buyers demand it. It is what kicked Detroit's butt in the 80's. When you are at your PDI, if the rv has a couple small/minor issues let the dealer fix them. AFTERthey are fixed, then sign off on deal. If the rv at PDI is a probem child, walk from the deal all together. Your dealer failed. Chances are they will perform poorly at warranty repairs also.

We as consumers can only hold dealers to a high standard not the factory. Dealers are the one that has to hold factory to the high standard. Treat your rv purchase like a 2nd home purchase. No title closing until the home inspection passes with flying colors.
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Old 06-15-2013, 02:34 PM   #22
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Being a late comer to this thread and not knowing if this has been discussed before (and if it has I apologize ), I am seeing the term Quality Control used quite a bit here.

I just wish to throw out a bit of information that we in the FAA held certified repair stations and airlines to regarding QC:

QC is the final step in producing an quality and reliable part or service. These should be the guys in the black hats that stand at the end of the production line and check each and every item in that RV to make sure each item works as it should. They should also have the authority and guts to say something isn't right and this unit doesn't go out the door until everything is fixed.

The first step in achieving this goal is the ongoing process of what we in the aviation business call Quality Assurance ( QA). QA is the process of looking at all steps of production of a quality product, such as vendor performance, material standards being met, worker performance, etc.

While I must say the QC is lacking in some areas of RV production, I must also say that QA is lacking also. We see missing fasteners, various components supplied by vendors that don't meet standards, frame issues, welding issues, etc.

Just my 2 cents.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:15 PM   #23
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Well, okay. I guess then all the importance placed on not dropping out of high school goes out the door. Tell that to all the teenagers out there who are tempted to. Tell them they don't need an education. Tell them they can be awesome craftsmen and workers into today's high tech work environments regardless.
That being said, I also believe Amish are wonderful craftsman...their furniture, quilts, woodworking, cast iron work, etc. are second to none.
But it might take some geometry, trigonometry, electrical savy, to assemble RVs. I think they are two separate types of work. I also think you have to "value" what you work at. Since they don't live by the same values of our fancy, electronic Rvs, I just wonder if that doesn't have a bearing on the caring. Sorry I ruffled a few feathers.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:28 PM   #24
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Well, okay. I guess then all the importance placed on not dropping out of high school goes out the door. Tell that to all the teenagers out there who are tempted to. Tell them they don't need an education. Tell them they can be awesome craftsmen and workers into today's high tech work environments regardless.
That being said, I also believe Amish are wonderful craftsman...their furniture, quilts, woodworking, cast iron work, etc. are second to none.
But it might take some geometry, trigonometry, electrical savy, to assemble RVs. I think they are two separate types of work. I also think you have to "value" what you work at. Since they don't live by the same values of our fancy, electronic Rvs, I just wonder if that doesn't have a bearing on the caring. Sorry I ruffled a few feathers.
No one is talking about these assemblers or anyone else dropping out of high school, these are adults with a different lifestyle and if you would venture into the manufacturing world, you would know that assemblers only have to know how to follow orders/work instructions. There is an old saying about mfg facilities for assembly workers and that is "Check your brains in at the guard shack and pick them up on your way home. They are not paid to think. I worked for Lockheed Martin where they assembled $5,000,000 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems and the workers were not allowed to do anything but what they were told or the written instructions told them to do. Quality has to be flowed from the top down, from your "highly educated" folks down to the worker. If you want to criticize FR for quality, you need to start at the top, not at the bottom.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:37 PM   #25
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I think OC and I are saying the same thing only in a different way. You can't build quality in at the end of the production cycle/ process - it begins as OC says at the top.

As far as the Amish work ethic - I always thought they were excellent at everything they do and still do as far as their furniture making goes.

But the majority of assembly workers at the FR Topeka, IN are Amish and they turn out some junk sometimes - so how do you explain that?
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:43 PM   #26
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...But the majority of assembly workers at the FR Topeka, IN are Amish and they turn out some junk sometimes - so how do you explain that?
As I have stated several times, workers do as they are instructed or told. Go jump the foremen or supervisors if you want to know why the workers do what they do. The Amish are very subservient people when working for someone.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:44 PM   #27
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I also said that mgt. has the final accountability.
I am perplexed at the difference in philosophy between "just do what you're told" and.. "Workers should write the work instructions as they know how to do the job better than a tech writer/industrial engr in the office." Somewhere in between perhaps. Workers who do what they're told, but who also have critical thinking and application skills.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:52 PM   #28
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As I have stated several times, workers do as they are instructed or told. Go jump the foremen or supervisors if you want to know why the workers do what they do. The Amish are very subservient people when working for someone.
I tend to agree with what you say about the Amish - so lets get back to the original topic matter - poor quality in RV products.

As I stated before and you have said about the same thing, quality is assured only when the manufacturer assumes all responsibility for building a quality product - from the top down.

So the manufacturer has to have a good QA and a good QC system in his process from the first day. You should not have to depend upon your dealer to correct a lot of incorrect things that the factory screwed up - once again a good QA and QC process.

I'm not disagreeing with you - take yes for an answer.
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Old 06-15-2013, 03:59 PM   #29
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I also said that mgt. has the final accountability.
I am perplexed at the difference in philosophy between "just do what you're told" and.. "Workers should write the work instructions as they know how to do the job better than a tech writer/industrial engr in the office." Somewhere in between perhaps. Workers who do what they're told, but who also have critical thinking and application skills.
Mgt has the first, middle and final accountability. We were at a manufacturer in Arkansas that produced quality nuts, bolt, etc. and over 50% of the workers (older ones) were illiterate and the mgmt. sat down with tape recorders with them as the older illiterate workers were the experts in running the equipment and recorded what the workers told them on how to do the job and the work instructions were then written for the new people on the line. Quality has to start at the top and driven be down and thru' every department. It will not work any other way. If upper, middle and shop mgmt. is not behind it, it will not happen. Ask anyone familiar with the manufacturing process and you will get the same answer.
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Old 06-15-2013, 04:11 PM   #30
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I tend to agree with what you say about the Amish - so lets get back to the original topic matter - poor quality in RV products.

As I stated before and you have said about the same thing, quality is assured only when the manufacturer assumes all responsibility for building a quality product - from the top down.

So the manufacturer has to have a good QA and a good QC system in his process from the first day. You should not have to depend upon your dealer to correct a lot of incorrect things that the factory screwed up - once again a good QA and QC process.

I'm not disagreeing with you - take yes for an answer.
Absolutely correct B. When the white shirts & ties preach & practice QA & QC, it will produce a practically flawless product.
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