China Mold shop Spam out of hand

I made a few postings to some of these groups looking for some help. My
problem is not with the help I got from these groups( it was generally
quite good) but from the amount of spam I now get from Chineese mold makers now. If most of the work is already going to China. Why do they continually need to cheat? Does anyone really answer this spam? It alway seems to come from a female (which I doubt really is) with an American sounding first name. They seem to have no problems getting past my spam blocker. I'll get several e-mail from the same company they just change the female first name. The message is alway in broken english. Why isn't there a backlash against these firms. They seem to cheat on so many levels, currency manipulation and intellectuall property stealing. My customers would drop me in a second if they thought I was not conducting myself in anyway that was not above board.
My quality has to be perfect, they want you to be ISO QS 9000 certified, and I forced to jump through all these hoops. Is the rule that as long as your the cheapest anything goes? Many of my customers tell me they are mandated to send a certain amount of work to China. Even if I can show them that is does not nessesarily make good economic
sense. They say their hands are tied. I'd love to hear some other thoughts on this.
Mark Reynaert, President Mark Mold and Engineering PO Box 407 773 W. Beamish Rd. Sanford, MI 48657 Phone or Fax 989-687-9786 snipped-for-privacy@aol.com MARK MOLD and ENGINEERING
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
munge your email address. never use an email address in a public arena which you don't want compromised. sounds like it's too late though. ;)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Never post a real e-mail address on the usenet. I learned that lesson the hard way!

ISO 9000! Boy I love that farce. You can produce absolute crap as long as your procedures document that you produce crap and still be completely in compliance with ISO 9000.
It's a crutch that purchasing agents use not to do their jobs properly. "Oh they are ISO 9000 certified, so I don't have to perform factory visits, etc, etc, etc.". It's amazing.
I once ordered some quartz rod blanks from a glass manufacturer whose name escapes me, but they vigorously advertised their ISO 9000 certification. The shipment shows up and the blanks are broken to length, not cut. I contacted them and they promptly sent me their procedure for "cutting" glass blanks and breaking them was fully part of the procedure. None of this was mentioned in the catalog however.

We had a similar wave of business go to Korea in the early '80s. It didn't take very long for the beancounters to realize that it was costing more to manufacture in Korea than it did here in the states and the business began drifting back.
I suspect the same will happen with China. The monetary issue will resolve itself as the entire rest of the world is pressuring the Chinese to let their currency float. There is also becoming much more information available about the working conditions in Chinese factories and it isn't pretty. Compound that with the complete disregard for any sort of reasonable environmental practices and you have a recipe for an explosion. Excuse the pun.
Take care, ==========================================================================Chris
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yep! I agree... But in the mean time (until the bean counters figure out that its not THAT great of a bargain), we are only boosting their economy.
--
Seth Renigar
Emerald Tool and Mold Inc.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mark,
First of all, take the advice posted here regarding your e-mail address. Or you could set up a junk hotmail account and sift through the crap to find legitimate replies.
As far as the Chinese, it's pretty simple,,, no accountability. Combine that with a cultural philosophy that doesn't include what we percieve as ethics or integrity, and there ya go. Stealing isn't wrong. The dishonor is in getting caught, and then only if there are consequences.
Regards
Mark

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I've been through the "Chinese" mold route, and a lot of people talk as if it is something magic.
If all a customer needs is down and dirty wide tolerance parts and doesn't care about specifying anything, and only needs 5,000 or 50,000 parts or so, China might be a good cheap source.
I have seen first hand the bad things that happen, with soft parts where they were supposed to be hardened, tolerances ignored by margins so high you wonder what they were thinking, parts left out (hot sprue bushings & cavity plate interlocks), weird gating where I specifically called for the location and gate type, new part inserts put in an old mold, with the wrong locating ring, & wrong ejector rod hookup, cooling line nightmare spagetti hookups, and bad cooling, etc.
A friend is chief engineer of a sporting equipment company and most molds are done in China and they do so because they only run a few hundred thousand parts before the next year's models come along, so the molds are accepted to be "cheap", but they stil have to maintain their own Hong Kong crew to supervise the moldmaker selection & work, so it is not as inexpensive for them as it is often claimed, given the oversight necessary to get it right.
He can get Class A tools at a few shops in China, but they are less than 1% of the toolmakers.
The biggest thing I can not stand for molds used in the U.S. is Chinese toolmakers don't want to make molds to U.S. standards with U.S. components unless the parts are imported, and haven't typically offered to guarantee insert interchangeability and mold solids & dwg files so repairs, mods and replacements can be done back in the U.S. later. Those things can be big costs later on.
It is the TCO issue faced by anyone operating something for a long period of time. When you analyze Total Cost of Ownership of a hybrid Toyota, it doesn't pan out over time unless you are a traveling salesman, who really crams the miles in but still stays light on the gas pedal.
I just talked with one of the largest automation companies in the U.S. today on a quote they are doing for me, and they noted that a lot of their automation systems are going overseas, and guess where a lot of them wind up? In China would you believe?
High volume super reliable, validatable, high precision 24x7 operation still needs the highest quality, and you pay for that, or you do NOT get 99.5% uptime or better.
Bo
MrMold wrote:

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I have dealt with a variety of companies that get parts (specifically injection molded components) manufactured in China. Despite all of the hype, you definitely get what you pay for, even in China. If you pay prices comparable to good U.S. shops, you are likely to get good product. If you choose the lowest bidder, you will probably receive low quality product (both in China and the U.S.). China is a big place with all forms of businesses. Some are exceptionally good, some are criminally bad, and most are somewhere between these two extremes. If you need very low tolerance parts and can tolerate a complete lack of customer service, you might be able to work with cheap shops in China. Otherwise, you need to be talking with the more expensive shops in China.
If you are going to work with shops in China, it is very important that you have a representative physically in China. Some companies send employees to China for extended visits, but I would recommend someone that remains in China indefinitely. Unfortuantely, a presence in China is typically needed throughout the duration of manufacturing efforts. Just because you have worked out the kinks and now have acceptable first article samples does not end the need for a presence in China. There are companies (typically based here in the U.S.) that serve as intermediaries between Chinese shops and U.S. companies. In some cases, these intermediaries may be sufficient. Of course, hiring an intermediary increases your total cost. The alternative is to send your own people to China alot, but that's by no means free.
I am well aware of the "conventional wisdom" among U.S. companies that buying stuff in China is much cheaper. I am continually amazed by the companies that talk about how much money they are saving by buying from China. In every case, there are significant expenses (both short term and long term) that directly impact the bottom line which are ignored, forgotten, or trivialized. In some cases, this is deliberate mis-representation intended to boost someone's standing in the company. More frequently, it appears to be caused by a failure to comprehend the big picture. "Look, we are buying the parts from our Chinese source and saving 42%! Isn't that great!" In the excitement, the company forgets to account for the three trips to China, the four month delay in shipping product, and the fees paid to their logistics agent for handling all of the international purchases. In the end, that 42% savings might only be 10%, but those initial invoices from China certainly gave the impression they are saving a great deal of money.
--
- John

John Eric Voltin
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Well said!!!
--
Seth Renigar
Emerald Tool and Mold Inc.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
For what its worth, I highly recommend using a U.S. based overseas sourcing company to facilitate getting parts made overseas. Originally, I was very sketical of such services, but working with such businesses has been very helpful for my clients. The apparent cost is a bit higher than trying to do everything yourself, but its actually cheaper once you account for all of the time you save not making trips overseas, learning to deal with the logistics of international purchasing, and trying to communicate with people that don't speak the same language. Additionally, the good overseas sourcing companies have much more influence with the overseas factories than most U.S. companies. This is because the good overseas sourcing companies often have partial or complete ownership of the factories they use. At a minimum, they have long term formalized relationships with the factories they use.
--
- John

John Eric Voltin
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
John Eric Voltin wrote:

I fully agree, John, and your comments parallel what I've seen in my limited work and friends.
On person I know, an ex Respiratory Therapist, started his own company, and then started ordering from China, and had many trips and troubles trying to get and keep quality and eventually had to buy his own facility and he moved there almost full-time to oversee it.
Another was a toolmaker and molder in Los Angeles area, who ordered molds (& fixed a lot of them he received) and eventually based younger family members in a Hong Kong facility full time to do mold designs and oversee the Chinese tool shops they use. He currently is receiving about 1000 molds per year with many of them going to other tool shops in the LA area who don't have the time to do the work. I do not think the end customers even know their mold base was made in China in some cases.
One thing I found was unique, when I said I wanted a development tool out of 7075-T5 Aluminum or similar, as I had done for 30 years. He noted that there is almost virtually no aircraft production in China, so there is no hard aluminum there, and thus they don't do aluminum molds unless you import the aluminum from the U.S. or Japan. Same thing with U.S. parts which you know will wear out or burn out over time and need replacement.
That toolmaker/molder is very careful to explain to his customers that you can order Class A, B, C, or D tools and the pricing & quality differences you will get. Class A tools for long runs and tight tolerances for interchangeability at all levels and to meet the likes of GMP standards for medical & similar precision parts do NOT come "cheap".
Bo
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.