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How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 2:08 PM

I purchased this oil filler tube cap yesterday for $1.95 USD at an auto parts store. It looks to be high quality, with no evident parting line or tool marks.

This thing was made in China, boxed and shipped to the USA, distributed and stocked all for $1.95.

How is his possible?

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#1

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 2:36 PM

It's all part of the plan to make manufacturing anywhere but in China irrelevant.

We can get some gear from China supplied and delivered cheaper than the cost of just the postage here in Australia.

There is obviously a fair degree of government subsidising going on to keep these companies viable both for the manufacture and distrubution, although in our case, with postage in mind, I'm pretty sure that as most of the handling and postage costs would be borne by Australia post.

I recently purchased a set of earbuds from China for 99 cents delivered, it costs one dollar just to post a letter here. China puts it on a boat, Australia posr then has to sort, transport to regional area, sort again and then deliver it to me, I doubt the seller is paying for any of the Aussie part of the equation.

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#8
In reply to #1

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 11:06 PM

Exactly right although I would expand on your theme .

China has employees’ that visit shops in western markets and report on pricing of goods .

the Chinese govt then provides export and shipping subsidies to allow them to underprice our local manufacturers for long enough to wipe out our manufacturing sector , then wait long enough for our skills assets (people) to age a little and cease being viable employees.

when time has passed and the above has succeeded they will increase pricing enough to make profits while still making it not viable for us to retrain , retool and restablish manufacturing.

when world war 3 breaks out western countries will overnight lose the ability to import from the only supplier (China) and cannot supply themselves with local production so we will be screwed , unable to fuel ourselves , feed ourselves or fight.

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#2

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 3:11 PM

In the "old" days such things were called "LOSS LEADERS", products sold for LESS than their actual cost as a means of getting into the market from the bottom up.

Quantity is a attribute unto itself in costs.

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#3

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 3:48 PM

They lose money on each part, but make it up on volume...

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#34
In reply to #3

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 12:05 PM

Please explain how that works! (Aside from the previously mentioned subsidies)

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#4

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 3:50 PM

I would not be at all surprised that this oil filler tube cap and tens of thousands like it performed some other more profitable function prior to being repackaged for your local auto parts dealer.

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#35
In reply to #4

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 4:43 PM

Perhaps, but doubtful. There were millions of these small block Chevy vans produced over the years. This one is 25 years so the hardness of the original rubber cap is understandable. (just turned over 100K miles/4,000 miles/year)

The longevity of the rubber remains a question, but I suspect that this cap will outlive me. I've been around molded parts for a long time and the finish of this part is outstanding. I didn't look at it under a scope but there were no obvious parting lines, no evidence of a sprue mark and no ejection pin marks.

The comment about post mold de-flashing and finishing does not seem to apply here.

I may have to remove it and look more closely, but for now it's doing its job.

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#5

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 4:17 PM

I'm with you, I buy stuff all the time from China, it's always free shipping and cheaper than it would seem just for the materials....they can't be making any money on this stuff....This is an example of something I would not buy....

1Pcs Hot Silver Coin 1888 Antique Dollar Collection Dollar $1 USA United Morgan

$1.07 delivered

Now even though they claim this is genuine, we all know this isn't possible...and I certainly wouldn't recommend buying any coins from China, but even for a fake this is really cheap...Clearly the Chinese cannot be trusted to be truthful in business dealings, and anything from China should be considered a novelty item....that oil filler cap will probably crumble in a short time...but there are some things that will serve their purpose, so good luck with that....it's basically a roll of the dice....

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#17
In reply to #5

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 6:18 AM

Clearly the Chinese cannot be trusted to be truthful in business dealings, Neither can American Apple products, but then again, they are Chinese product suppliers too. So who learned business from whom?

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#21
In reply to #17

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:21 AM

It appears things are coming around in full circle.

Apple products are contracted with FOXCONN... where the products were made in Taiwan by FOXCONN... and now soon to be made in the United States.

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:29 AM

The People's Republic of China (PRC) views the island as a province, while in Taiwan—a territory with its own democratically elected government—leading political voices have differing views on the island's status and relations with the mainland.

I think this makes it Chinese made. But at days end, everyone wants to own a market and have income. Some can do it on cheap labour like India, some do it on cheap labour and materials like China. Either way, they will still outdo the west on price and time. And still, believe it or not, make profit.

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#24
In reply to #22

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:56 AM

I had posted a link about Apples CEO Tim Cook stating about China's infrastructure (basically skilled and professional labor) He mentioned that in China, if you needed a tooling engineer, they would have enough readily available to fill a auditorium, while in the states, if you needed a tooling engineer, you'd have trouble filling a classroom.

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#6

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 7:15 PM

A lot of the problem is that they pay nothing for the tooling required for these parts.

International companies get their branded items made in China because it's cheaper there.

The problem is that to do this, those companies often provide all of the tooling, machinery, proprietary know-how and expertise for the Chinese production runs which they can then sell at a good margin.

Then the Chinese use the same tooling, machinery, etc to manufacture identical products which they can then sell at vastly discounted prices. chances are they even use materials paid for by the international companies.

US companies are among the largest contributors to this problem, so can't really complain when they get dudded with cheaper but often identical knock-offs of their products.

It's a dog chasing its tail situation where the cheaper the Chinese go, the more the internats have to go to the Chinese to get their manufacturing costs down, so the more scope the Chinese have to get even more products on the market at ever cheaper prices.

Good for the consumer in the short term, but eventually even fewer manufacturing jobs will exist outside of the Eastern countries.

The Chinese, Koreans, etc. have no downside in this equation.

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#7
In reply to #6

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 7:24 PM

I had posted a video of this a while ago... but could find it... but Tim Cook of Apple mentioned they manufacturer in China not because of cheap labor... because China didn’t have cheap labor for a while... the offsofre to China only because of its infrastructure for the industry as well as an educated workforce.

its interesting that FOXCONN, one of Apples suppliers is has moving and building a large plant here in the states... things do run in cyclical.

i personally noticed the quality of items coming from China are improving.

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#9
In reply to #7

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 11:35 PM

.....Anybody old enough to remember Japanese products from the 1970-1980's should recognize this- eventually things level up. The big difference I see is that China has a much larger workforce to draw up than Japan ever did, as well as having excellent resources of their own (unlike Japan).

I have friends in industrial supply that say India beats China for a lot of things.

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#14
In reply to #9

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 2:27 AM

Vietnamese labour costs are half that of China.

buy from China and try lodging a warranty claim they will pull out their book of 1001 bullsheet replies and laugh at you.

now to balance the global picture , go and google “8 nations invasion” to read what western history wants to forget , that is when 8 countries invaded China as thieves to kill , pillage and plunder .

any readers here with integrity would say that is a crime and an apology should be made to China , along with repatriation of stolen Chinese antiquities.

so , China apparently wants a war ...considering the above injustice ask yourself why ?

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#19
In reply to #14

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:16 AM

so , China apparently wants a war ...considering the above injustice ask yourself why ?

so, it appears that everyone's a victim.

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#23
In reply to #19

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:31 AM

Anybody watching the military build up and the Chinese reach into the South China Sea would form a belief “Houston - we have a problem”.

So before we can fix a problem , we must first understand the problem.

and that requires an _honest_ look at history .

we can’t approach the problem using beliefs from biased media campaigns and expect to “win”

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#25
In reply to #23

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:00 AM

Lets not jump to conclusions here.

They (China) are showing a defense...

But not all is as it seems. But it still has to be respected, and that is China's aim.

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#18
In reply to #9

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:15 AM

Its possible... I posted a number of times, what China is going through,... all the other industrialized nation went through. The difference is, the media and communications network wee have today.

In the past, it wasn't so much so.

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#10

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/01/2018 11:44 PM

That is a rhetorical question, isn't it?

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#11

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 12:10 AM

There is also the rejects from batch runs which are supposed to be destroyed but they give them away, charging only for postage,

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#12

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 1:14 AM

I don't know about the filler cap, but here, if you order a small lot of electronic bits, it gets packed into a container in China by the post, takes 6 to 8 weeks to ship, unloads here and is handled by the local postal service. The Chinese pay very little for the service and we here have to do the donkey work of distribution. And of course we don't send lots of small packets to China, putting it on them to distribute there.

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#13

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 1:26 AM

Here are some things I have noticed:

A. You buy a Chinese made product for $ 1.95 and it lasts two years. You buy the same type of American made product for $ 5.00 and it lasts ten years. So by buying the Chinese made product, in the long run, you have to spend twice as much to get a product that will last just as long.

B. In America, we have an Underwriters laboratory, which is a testing entity that is not financed or controlled by the national government. Whereas in China, all testing labortories are controlled and financed by the national government.

C. In America, we have the UL . In China, they have the CCC ( China compulsory certification ) and the CNCA ( Certification and accreditation administration ) . The CCC is responsible for certifying domestic and imported products to be sold in the Chinese domestic market. The list of regulations is long, costly and time consuming, such that it can take up to 18 months or longer to get your product into the hands of Chinese consumers. A different division of the government can expedite this same process by paying the appropriate fees ( bribes ) to 3-6 months.

The CNCA ( Established in 1993 ) is a set of rules and regulations governing imported and domestic products. To the foreigner, these controls appear to be set in stone, although many Chinese state run industries routinely violate their own rules. Remember, in a Communist society, all commercial enterprises, in some fashion or another, regardless if said to be privately owned, are controlled by the central government.

In the past, as well as currently, there have been several examples of this type of corruption. The pet food scare is one and most recently there has been the " spinners " , those innocuous lead laced toys marketed to adults to reduce anxiety and marketed to children to reduce boredom. Transference of lead was through transdermal as well as through mucosal, with saliva as the carrier.

In an examination of the CNCA regulations, one can't help notice a stark similarity to the Farengi rules of acquisitions. Here are some sources :

Go to Google

1. CCC in China

2. english.cnca.gov.cn

3.farengi rules of acquisitions / memory-beta.wikia.com

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#15

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 4:55 AM

Is there some reason why the country of manufacture is of such a high relevance?

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#20
In reply to #15

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:19 AM

Frankly,... the way trade is now... it's an assembled component have parts made from all over... and made from the lowest bidder.

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#31
In reply to #15

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 10:37 AM

Yes. It's 13,800 miles from Shanghai to New York and 19,000 from Shanghai to L.A. Ca.

Sure, these are relatively small and light, but that's a long way to ship something.

Cheap labor and volume can only help so much.

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#32
In reply to #31

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 10:51 AM

not when you look at it this way...

I understand that Chinese companies are building warehouses in the States (California)

To house the more high volume items such as car parts.... this does cut logistics costs down quite a bit.

Still I can't understand the cheap shipping when I do get things from China on item bought off of ebay or amazon.

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#16

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 5:17 AM

The "fault" if there is any lies within the US automotive industry and their worldwide exploitation of manufacturers.

The packaged part that you show would cost around $0.10 to manufacture at scale (injection moulded) including tooling recovery costs. Packaging a around $0.10 including labour and delivery to USA from Asia (air freight) at around $0.20/piece including master package to hold say 120 of these smaller items.

When we quoted on a product for US auto industry supply, we had to provide "transparent" costing showing our profit on product. The auto industry then required a 3% cost down year on year. If a product was carried into the next model, the 3% cost down cycle continued. They used the "continuous improvement" expectation to justify why suppliers should be able to support this.

If you didn't play by their rules, then they just re-sourced to another manufacturer.

ALSO, the spare parts supply was required to be at the same unit cost as the parts supplied to the vehicle assembly plants (VAP), with only consideration for the additional packaging.

Thus it is quite possible that the item that you are seeing for $1.95 is being sourced at around $0.50 for the VAP and being supplied to their parts division for $0.60 with their distribution group selling on to retailers for $0.99 and customers for $1.95.

This process made us very competitive as an industry, but destroyed many smaller organisations.

The parts in your image may have been made in China and shipped as a bulk lot (lose in containers) to be re-packaged in Mexico depending on the labour/shipping cost ratio of the two countries.

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#26

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:39 AM

It's a honey trap, designed to make you feel good about dealing with China, so when they take over there'll be no resistance because you'll think of them as being good for you and your family.

I just finsihed reading a book written by a Beijing insider and it answers this and every other question you have about China's intentions to the West, especially to the US.

This is from the back cover:

Wake Up America!
China Declared War On You!
The goons and thugs in Beijing are in a blood vessel bursting rage.
They're not getting the respect they think they deserve.
Especially not from America.
So they've declared a dirty war on the USA.
Every day, Beijing acquires more and more US assets while America loses Factories, Technology, Know-How, Intellectual Property, Copyrights, Trade Secrets, thousands of jobs and trillions of dollars through Chinese theft and corruption - all administered by the goons and thugs in Beijing.
Beijing has been playing the US for a sucker for over thirty five years now.
But how did they manage that without anyone realizing?
Because some swamp rats in Washington are busy selling America to the Chinese for their own personal gain.
And it's been going on for so long, the US is now in such critical shape there's hardly any time left to turn it around.
TRUMPING THE GOONS AND THUGS THAT RUN CHINA opens the lid on Beijing's dirty tricks and it hits like a baseball bat to the side of the head.
Written by a Beijing Insider, it's the most detailed expose ever to reach the West and it reveals exactly what the jackbooted Beijing goons have in mind for America as they grind the USA under their heels.

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#27

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:41 AM

Mass produced plastic is extremely low cost. I had a friend working at a plastics factory in the USA in 1976 and making "Afro" combs at a cost of 2 cents each. (sold for around $2.00 I think) Now in inflation adjusted dollars that is still under ten cents. So add in even lower cost labor in China and a bit more molding, and I bet they still are making a profit on that.

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#29
In reply to #27

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:50 AM

One thing I did notice when buying rubber items made in china... is the degassing or lack off degassing of the material.

some of the stuff really smells... that last item I bought was replacement wheels for a Sears Craftsman yard cart. peeuuu

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#28

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:47 AM

Congrats on your purchase. I also made a purchase from China. I was in the market for some Kapton double sided tape for one of my projects, so I ordered it on Ebay as a test. As you know, Kapton is an expensive film used in high temperature applications. A roll of this tape from the US might normally cost $100.00 or more. I just received this roll from Shanghai for $6.00 and change. GOOD DEAL?. Only problems are, it was labelled Kaptan and is single sided. Live and learn.

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#30

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:50 AM

About 7 years ago, I did a year long stint at an appliance manufacturer. Their primary product line is knife sharpeners. They had enough sensitive intellectual property to keep most of the assembly of their sharpeners in house. They typically outsourced only motors and switches to Chinese factories.

This company also imported a fair amount of the rest of their product line, tea kettles, waffle makers and the like from China. They had a few trusted factories that they worked with, but even still they had to watch the factories like a hawk. At any point they'd spot check shipments. If that showed too many defects, they'd inspect the whole lot. I witnessed several shipments that were 100% inspected after they reached the US with repairs needed on 20% or more of the shipment. Somehow the company successfully back charged the Chinese factories for the inspection and repair labor, of course at US labor rates.

They also hired a western controlled (I was never sure if they were European or US controlled) inspection company to spot check shipments in China before they were even loaded into containers. This still gave mixed results. It reduced failure rates but by no means did it eliminate problems. Through all of this the Chinese factories kept producing.

The Chinese are learning. They do understand that efficiency is important. They will cut costs at every point including materials, assembly labor, shipping or wherever they find opportunities.

Bottom line is that it's hit-or-miss as to whether you'll get quality products from China. I suspect that the filler cap was probably designed by an OEM and the IP stolen by the factory that sold it to Lyn. Or it is possible that they legally acquired the design. Without more info we'll never know. I'd love to check the material to find out how different it is from OEM. Are there any fillers or additives that might stretch the material usage? Is the material virgin plastic or recycled? Is it millimeters shorter than original? Are there any other shortcuts the factory may have taken to reduce costs?

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#33

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 10:54 AM

That is because parts injection molded from that "Delrin" or polypropylene are usually high appearance quality, with little to no "flash", since the mold halves are probably axial in this case, and any "flash" is trimmed off automatically.

The parts are made in bulk, shipped in bulk, and distributed only regionally, then automatically picked, and routed for shipping to local.

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#36
In reply to #33

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 6:49 PM

What about these $5 gold watches? ...with certificate of authenticity...

Collectible Gold Kansas City Railroad Pocket Watch

$4.99 free shipping

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#37
In reply to #36

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 7:27 PM

There never was a Kansas city railroad.

There was a Kansas Southern Railway.

So, your watch and it's certificate of authenticity is a fake.

Maybe you return it and get a refund :)

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#38
In reply to #37

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 8:32 PM

It's not named for the railroad, it's named for the conductor whose watch was stolen by Jesse James and returned as the story goes....there are 2 different versions of the watch, one is quartz and battery, and one is wind up....I am not interested in the watch in either version.....It was posted as an example of the low cost of goods from China, in case you weren't paying attention...The watch can be found for sale everywhere at prices ranging from high to low...

https://www.asseenontvvideo.com/512873/Kansas-City-Railroad-Pocket-Watch.html

https://www.amazon.com/Kansas-Railroad-Pocket-Watch-Antique/dp/B00KUACBWK

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#40
In reply to #38

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 10:34 PM

Solar eagle, I was paying attention. In your post showing the watch, you didn't put a link to Kansas city railroad. In your 2nd post showing the watch, you showed a link. I followed that link and read the story about the conductor and Jesse James.

Oh by the way, the American Historic Society is bogus too.

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#41
In reply to #40

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/03/2018 12:39 AM

http://americanhistoricsociety.com/

In the first post the picture was linked....you just have to click on it....I really don't care whether the watch or it's credentials hold water, that information is irrelevant...I'm neither selling nor buying watches, bogus or otherwise...and no I don't think you are following the jist of this thread at all, otherwise we wouldn't be having this superfluous exchange...The question at hand is how can a watch(and other goods) be produced, sold and delivered all the way from China to the US for $4.99....! When it would cost me at least $10 just to mail it to Canada...?

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#39

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/02/2018 9:06 PM

I can recall a set of socket wrenches in imperial and metric sizes that sold for $4.95. That included a ratchet wrench, swivel adapter and about 16 sockets. I can't fathom how it could be sold at that price when you consider the cost of the material, the cost to make it, the cost to ship it, the cost to import it and the final cost out the door to the consumer. There has to be a profit in there somewhere. Of course it was a piece of junk, but how could they do it and make a profit.

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#42

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/03/2018 12:56 AM

Sometimes the "cheap" items really do provide value for money.

Once doing a renovation job, needed some sharp chisels to remove 3ply wall cladding, vinyl tiles/adhesive etc. but knew there would be nails and other metal obstacles, plus it was on welded metal framework with some steps where parts were joined. I bought three $2.00 cold chisels and sharpened them to knife edge, fully knowing the edge would be sacrificed multiple times in the job.

Far better option than to destroy my $20 to $60 each wood chisels.

Still have those (shorter) cold chisels and continue to use them for those jobs where you just know the tool is going to come of poorly.

Other examples already mentioned such as the $4.95 socket kit can be interesting. I've seen one set re-gifted around the family for years without being opened. I was the originator and am still waiting to see what happens when it is opened to reveal a 12oz hip flask of Jim Beam (You guys have that over there don't you) and a couple of shot glasses in velvet lined insert. I did a first aid kit for one of my brothers once and when he opened it nearly 6 months later he was very satisfied with the rum and glasses it contained.

A lot of people here seem to be "picking on" the China source of your part, but they probably only made $0.03 profit on the part. The importer probably made $0.50 and the retailer made $0.95.

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#43
In reply to #42

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/03/2018 7:27 AM

Sometimes the "cheap" items really do provide value for money.

I'll second that... for an example: (this was 15 years ago) I had a 1/2" DeWalt Drill that was on its last leg. armature was turned down already and I lost count with the amount of brushes I install. It was still running, but I purchased a Milwaukee 1/2" 'D' handled Drill, when the Dewalt would puke out. btw, paid over $400.00 for it. (I did a quick search and they are around $200.00 if you shopped around but about $359.00 normally, not bad for the price dropping 20% over 15 years).

Had to drill a 3-1/2" hole (Holesaw) into a 12 ga 304 Stainless sheet. Well the Dewalt Puked, and one of the fabricators grabbed the New Milwaukee and started drilling . He said to me, the New milwaukee is going to die on us also, surprised I asked Why?,... he said its already started to smoke...

I myself will buy a cheap specialty tool from harbor freight, if its something a rarely will used for diy.)

But some things I would budge on quality... I love my 5 HP 10" Delta uni-saw for accuracy and quality of cut, where last summer I bought Incra MITER1000SE Miter Gauge. because of some precision miters I needed to do... maybe over kill... but the end result was beautiful.

It comes down to a mater of how much comprise you're willing to accept.

When I found what he was doing, he was just bearing down on it, with no cutting fluid, and no rest time... just one shot through.

I was so pissed, I went to Harbor Freight and bought 1/2" Drill, 1/2" SDS Impact Hammer Drill, Posta-bandsaw and a few other items I can't recall for under $400.00.

Those tools were abused... the quality is lower,... especially the chucks on the drill at the time.... These tools were thrown around.. the fabricators hated to use them for one reason... they felt insulted using them... but after a while, they realized they were pretty durable with the extra abuse they received. But I treated them as a consumable.

But put the comparison... the higher priced tools, like Milwaukee... you know you have the quality... it feels so much smoother in your hands..

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#44
In reply to #42

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/03/2018 9:10 AM

Hi there. I could use a new cheap socket set as well, if you get around to it...

rum and shot glasses sounds absolutely fine! PM for the address. LOL.

I will send you some bastards (files) in return.

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#45
In reply to #42

Re: How Is This Possible?

01/03/2018 2:57 PM

Would that be a flask of Distillers Masterpiece ?

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