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Old 08-02-2012, 11:55 AM   #1
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USA Manufacturing


Guys.. having a debate here with a friend..

What does 'US Manufacturing" mean to you?

Does it mean manufacturing some, most, or all in the US? What if you are headquartered in the US, but manufacture some things overseas.

How do you define?

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Old 08-02-2012, 12:03 PM   #2
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USA Manufacturing


It means nothing. U.S. product identification is really non-existent or at best very loose. Most other countries have stricter requirements.

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Old 08-02-2012, 09:04 PM   #3
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USA Manufacturing


If you found that printed on a product, it sounds like a translation by somebody who does not speak much English.
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Old 08-02-2012, 11:23 PM   #4
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USA Manufacturing


This debate goes on in the auto industry. Which is more American, a Ford Focus built in Mexico, or a Toyota Camry built in Kentucky? For me, its where the actual thing was manufactured, that employs American people. I could care less where the profits go, as long as blue collar men and women can support their families.
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Old 08-03-2012, 06:47 AM   #5
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USA Manufacturing


So if 75% of the components are made in Japan, but assembled in the U.S., does that make the car "Made in the U.S."? If the steel sheet coils are made in Japan, but stamped and welded into cars in the U.S., how do you determine what percentage is American made? By product value? By labor investment? I doubt there are any easy answers and the spin put on it will depend on who is doing the spinning. The car companies will gladly tell you that thier Toyotas or Subarus are American made to give buyers that warm fuzzy feeling that they are supporting the home economy, but just how much economy are they supporting? Assembling all the foreign made parts here gets the manufacturer a break on import duties, a sales pitch, lowers transportation costs (it's cheaper to transport crates of engines, transmissions and components than dainty completed cars) and still lets them send the profits home to support the foreign economy. So yeah, they boost the local economy by putting people to work, but do nothing for the national economy.
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Old 08-03-2012, 06:54 PM   #6
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USA Manufacturing


Or there is WalMart's trick to get around accusations of using Chinese sweat shop labor. They can mark products made in US protecterates like some of the South Pacific Islands as US Made and the working conditions are far worse than in China!

Their Norwegian Salmon farm raised in a manner destroying ecosystems of the coast of South America cracks me up too! The fence off the salmon farms and toss food pellets at the fish that cause complete havoc to other sea life.

Stay out of box stores if you can and there is an alternative that will work. I hope you cannot, with clear conscience wag the US flag in one hand and carry a bag of cheap Chinese tools, lighting fixtures, nuts and bolts in the other? You might have to search out American goods and wait a day for delivery but it will be worth it. And we can still make some of the best quality things out there contrary to rumors at times.

http://www.stillmadeinusa.com/tools.html

http://www.americanworking.com

There is an extremely high demand for people that can work automated machine tools here in Illinois. The state has free training and manufacturers gobble up people any good at all and pay them fairly. One high school I am loosely involved with has incorporate machine tooling not as a magnet program for "shop tracked kids" but as part of the overall curricula. It is blended in with practical math and over four years all the kids learn to actually work with tools and make real things. If they stick with it they are graduated with a high school diploma and and certification that lets them work just about anywhere they want for a lot more than flipping burgers or even doing some of the horrid jobs I did to get through school.

I am excited about programs like it. We, as a whole, have forgotten how to make things and work with tools.

Last edited by user1007; 08-03-2012 at 07:09 PM.
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:15 PM   #7
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USA Manufacturing


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Originally Posted by Mort View Post
This debate goes on in the auto industry. Which is more American, a Ford Focus built in Mexico, or a Toyota Camry built in Kentucky? For me, its where the actual thing was manufactured, that employs American people. I could care less where the profits go, as long as blue collar men and women can support their families.
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Old 08-03-2012, 09:06 PM   #8
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USA Manufacturing


How many people consider that the condition exist in many supposedly low labor cost countries that use American equipment and highly automated equipment because it is cheaper to use and provide more money and education to to maintain the higher education levels than the U.S. (the U.S. is currently 15th in the world and falling).

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Old 08-03-2012, 11:39 PM   #9
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USA Manufacturing


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Originally Posted by toolman1916 View Post
Guys.. having a debate here with a friend..

What does 'US Manufacturing" mean to you?

Does it mean manufacturing some, most, or all in the US? What if you are headquartered in the US, but manufacture some things overseas.

How do you define?
Like it or not, we're in an international global economy. We're inter-connected with virtually every continent and country in the world.

I'm not sure there is ANYTHING that is truly "American" anymore.

That said, it does seem to me that American-made tools tend to be of better quality than most (all?) of those made in China & India.
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Old 08-04-2012, 05:16 AM   #10
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USA Manufacturing


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Like it or not, we're in an international global economy. We're inter-connected with virtually every continent and country in the world.
Absolutely and it serves no purpose to talk of isolationism, getting out of the UN and all that nonsense.

What is scary is that we are forgetting how to make and grow things and rely increasingly on others to provide for us products of both good and bad quality. The Chinese are perfectly capable of making good things in addition to cheap crap we demand for price point or the box store selling it does for profitability and shareholder return. So what if half the screws in a package break.

And the cheap box store, WalMart stuff is really quite expensive when you factor in the cost to communities of the way the companies do business and how little they contribute back. There are numerous studies on the instant and dramatic healthcare cost rises when a WalMart opens. Do you really save a dollar on socks if they were made elsewhere and if the store selling them causes your property taxes to rise because they do not pay or contribute a fair share to things like parks, fire, police, schools and public health? I don't think so.

We discourage our young from become cabinet makers, machinists, tool and dye makers, or fabricators of things in favor of nudging them to be lawyers and MBAs. I've had the flexibility and training to have both nice white and blue collar careers but my Dad and grandfather insisted I learn a trade skill or two so I would always have something to fall back on if not a career.

The fact of the matter is we do have pockets of great expertise as far as manufacturing. The old rust belt near me is not so anymore. There are amazing robotic systems for printing and making packaging. The finest dental hand tools in the World are made here. There are tons of castings factories and tool and dye and machine shop manufacturers that cannot find qualified people or those willing to be trained for decent paying jobs, often union scale with some of the best benefits around.

We do have rich and fertile land that could grow things we could actually eat without it being processed first into corn syrups and animal feeds not good for us or animals that would prefer another more natural diet. It is too lucrative for farmers to participate in corn subsidy and ethanol boomdoggles. The orchards I grew up with in N California are all gone so our many of our apricots, and other pitted fruits come from Mexico. The flower growers cannot handle heating costs their competitors south of the border do not have. In fact, I have a great produce section in the store near me but it is difficult to find anything grown in the US in the country of origin markings on the products.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:47 AM   #11
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USA Manufacturing


^^ Mehhh, I say we abandon the UN. It's a multi-billion dollar per year organization that doesn't do crap. Their security forces are worthless, and the whole organization lacks fangs and credibility. Just do away with the UN, and put the money to better use.

Part of that better use of the money will be an American foreign policy that includes REAL humanitarian & security aid, rather than just our military attacking countries whose leadership we don't like - or catering to terrorist regimes, because they have oil.


That said, if there's ANY hope for our country, it's going to include Americans being willing to back off our "artificial standard of living" we've come to expect. We absolutely must become more self-sufficient, and less indulged. I grew up on a farm, back in the 60s, where we did absolutely everything for ourselves - from welding, to milking the cows, to fixing fence, to overhauling engines. And frankly, I'm dumbfounded by how many people have absolutely NO clue how to do ANY of those things.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:56 PM   #12
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USA Manufacturing


Quote:
Originally Posted by Maintenance 6 View Post
So if 75% of the components are made in Japan, but assembled in the U.S., does that make the car "Made in the U.S."? If the steel sheet coils are made in Japan, but stamped and welded into cars in the U.S., how do you determine what percentage is American made? By product value? By labor investment? I doubt there are any easy answers and the spin put on it will depend on who is doing the spinning. The car companies will gladly tell you that thier Toyotas or Subarus are American made to give buyers that warm fuzzy feeling that they are supporting the home economy, but just how much economy are they supporting? Assembling all the foreign made parts here gets the manufacturer a break on import duties, a sales pitch, lowers transportation costs (it's cheaper to transport crates of engines, transmissions and components than dainty completed cars) and still lets them send the profits home to support the foreign economy. So yeah, they boost the local economy by putting people to work, but do nothing for the national economy.
So let's use the Toyota Camry I mentioned as an example. I don't know what the percentage of American-ness is, and quite frankly, it doesn't matter that much to me because I don't live anywhere near Kentucky. But let's assume that Japanese dudes build everything in their factory in Hiroshima, ship the car to America missing its gas cap, have an American dude put on the gas cap, and say its assembled in America.

So what? There is one dude in Kentucky that has a job because Akihido Toyoda wants a "Made in the USA" logo on his car. That's fine by me.

I suppose we could tell BMW, Mercedes, Toyota, Hyundai, Nissan, Subaru, Kia, and Volkswagen that we don't want their factories here. The Big 3 sure are doing a bang-up job keeping people employed.
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Old 08-05-2012, 12:09 PM   #13
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USA Manufacturing


Someone has hit my button here, so here goes. I worked for GM at a components plant for twenty (20) years that made alternators. As a unit came off the line to be packaged, mainly for GM plants and some foreign branded plants, I had to look at them in this manner. An outer aluminum casting where the aluminum came from South America but the castings were made in Alabama. The rotor was made from Korean made segments, U.S made shaft, U.S. made (in house) plastic spool for the wires, and copper wire from Indiana. Never knew where the raw copper came from. The stator was made in house using steel from Michigan and (again) copper wire from Indiana. Bearings were from Korea. The steel fans were imported, the plastic fans made in house. Overall, the unit was "made" in an American plant, by American workers, who did indeed take home a paycheck which kept the local economy flowing. So I had to say this was an "American" product keeping the American dream alive. Until the decision was made to close the plant and ship the equipment to Mexico. Don't ask me my opinion now.
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Old 08-05-2012, 08:59 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Maintenance 6 View Post
So if 75% of the components are made in Japan, but assembled in the U.S., does that make the car "Made in the U.S."? If the steel sheet coils are made in Japan, but stamped and welded into cars in the U.S., how do you determine what percentage is American made? By product value? By labor investment? I doubt there are any easy answers and the spin put on it will depend on who is doing the spinning. The car companies will gladly tell you that thier Toyotas or Subarus are American made to give buyers that warm fuzzy feeling that they are supporting the home economy, but just how much economy are they supporting? Assembling all the foreign made parts here gets the manufacturer a break on import duties, a sales pitch, lowers transportation costs (it's cheaper to transport crates of engines, transmissions and components than dainty completed cars) and still lets them send the profits home to support the foreign economy. So yeah, they boost the local economy by putting people to work, but do nothing for the national economy.


Well that was the case in the mid seventies,but foreign automobile manufacturers have made huge changes to the way they build and manufacture auto parts in the U.S.,just ask any of the 60,000 people in Tennessee that have jobs because of it,and Nissan has a plant in Dechard Tenn. that builds and exports engines to Japan,then there's the Nissan plant in Smyrna Tenn. that just won an internal competition with a plant in Japan to build a new Infiniti luxury SUV, the part of the car that's made outside of the US is the sheet steel,but it's still stamped here and the reason is we don't make steel like we used to is because it's cheaper to make elseware,just like everything else there's not much made here anymore.
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Old 08-05-2012, 09:30 PM   #15
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USA Manufacturing


Made in the USA and US manufacturing mean nothing to me.

The plant I work at has a sister plant in Japan. They made some products and sent them to us. We would take the heat shrink of the parts, inspect, re stack, heat shrink, and ship them to Canada, Mexico, and part of the US labeled as “made in the USA”.

We make parts for them that they repack and ship as “made in Japan”.

It might be time to read up on NAFTA.

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