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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 5:47 am 
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Reading this thread reminded me of an article i read in business week titled "Why Americans Won't do Dirty Jobs".

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/wh ... 92011.html

Why can't more manufacturing be done stateside anymore? As someone else has already pointed out, the $ gap isn't that big anymore --- tack on logistics, shipping, duties, etc... Also, what's the unemployment rate now -- 9%? 10%? Plenty of folks out there. So why can't manufacturing in the US work anymore?

I'll leave out my personal views for now... but the article is a good read. Food for thought.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:40 am 
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Quote:
Why can't more manufacturing be done stateside anymore? As someone else has already pointed out, the $ gap isn't that big anymore --- tack on logistics, shipping, duties, etc... Also, what's the unemployment rate now -- 9%? 10%? Plenty of folks out there. So why can't manufacturing in the US work anymore?

A combination of factors, but they all work against us.
Taxes, benefits, labor regulations, .....and we probably are a little lazy.
But I think another unrecognized factor is that it has been long enough since we had any real manufacturing jobs that we simply don't know how to do it anymore. People would be willing to do the work, but they don't know how, and no one remembers how to train them. Hence, inefficiency, low quality, and can't survive in a competetive marketplace.

I saw a documentary the other night that was trying to make it seem like Sweden had a better system. When a large factory in Sweden moved to an Asian country, the workers in Sweden were all given government supported unemployment for a long time, and given funds to go to school. It seemed great.
But then you have to ask yourself....why did the company leave Sweden ?
Maybe if Sweden didn't have so many great benefits (tax funded), the company could have afforded to stay and the people would have jobs.
This is not intended to pick on Sweden. Many countries are similar and the same question would arise. It is just the example I saw.

China is rising right now because the people are willing to work hard under conditions that we would consider "exploitive".
They consider it "the greatest opportunities they have had in centuries."


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Posted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 6:40 am 


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 7:24 am 
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Rick wrote:
Quote:
Why can't more manufacturing be done stateside anymore? As someone else has already pointed out, the $ gap isn't that big anymore --- tack on logistics, shipping, duties, etc... Also, what's the unemployment rate now -- 9%? 10%? Plenty of folks out there. So why can't manufacturing in the US work anymore?

A combination of factors, but they all work against us.
Taxes, benefits, labor regulations, .....and we probably are a little lazy.
But I think another unrecognized factor is that it has been long enough since we had any real manufacturing jobs that we simply don't know how to do it anymore. People would be willing to do the work, but they don't know how, and no one remembers how to train them. Hence, inefficiency, low quality, and can't survive in a competetive marketplace.

I saw a documentary the other night that was trying to make it seem like Sweden had a better system. When a large factory in Sweden moved to an Asian country, the workers in Sweden were all given government supported unemployment for a long time, and given funds to go to school. It seemed great.
But then you have to ask yourself....why did the company leave Sweden ?
Maybe if Sweden didn't have so many great benefits (tax funded), the company could have afforded to stay and the people would have jobs.
This is not intended to pick on Sweden. Many countries are similar and the same question would arise. It is just the example I saw.

China is rising right now because the people are willing to work hard under conditions that we would consider "exploitive".
They consider it "the greatest opportunities they have had in centuries."


The US is still the largest manufacturer in the world(according to the most recent data I've seen). A lot of the cheap stuff gets sourced out because of cost, but not because we're lazy, inefficient, or incapable of quality.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 7:57 am 
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bricky21 wrote:
The US is still the largest manufacturer in the world(according to the most recent data I've seen). A lot of the cheap stuff gets sourced out because of cost, but not because we're lazy, inefficient, or incapable of quality.

Link please?

I have difficulty believing the US is the largest manufacturing nation on earth unless it is based on some quirky notion.

According to a very quick search, you're second to China, and at risk of losing further ground as China's economy grows at over 10% compared to the US's 2.8%.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/002fd8f0-4d96 ... z1hzy4REQa
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_co ... atest_year)


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 8:12 am 
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http://shopfloor.org/2011/03/u-s-manufa ... gest/18756" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.seeitmarket.com/u-s-still-in ... ng-things/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.unis.unvienna.org/unis/press ... us097.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

From the UNIS
Quote:
The growth rate of the manufacturing output of the United States, the world's largest manufacturer


And that doesn't even include all the toxic finacial products that are manufactured in the US :P


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 4:44 pm 
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Most institutions can't even agree on the figures there. When to start and stop counting and what.
It makes better sense to consider manufacturing/industrial output per capita of the respective countries to get some qualitative wholesale idea as to which country is more active and who is falling asleep.

Rising economy/GDP to be considered prosperous is another myth. You can only rise it so much before you reach a plateau. In fact the entire world needs to reach an even plateau to become a fairer place. The commodity of Money (or GDP) only changes hands. If it is increasing somewhere that means it is decreasing elsewhere. But then you also have inflation which in offsetting prosperity makes nations think they are getting richer.

The ultimate economy can only be one of Resources. There are a finite number of resources on the planet (be it people, raw-materials etc). You consider it, you can not have nations getting richer and richer out of nowhere. National GDPs can only be supported by the available resources. It is makes absolutely no sense to mass produce junk in one part of the world and then transport it half way around the world to some place else. Junk and disposable goods can and should be made locally to support the local populations. Same goes for cycling industry.
China/Far East too will soon realixe this and reach a plateau.

bricky21 wrote:
And that doesn't even include all the toxic finacial products that are manufactured in the US :P


Nothing is really manufactured or fabricated in financial products. It's a business of finding new ways to "make money" off money. In reality money only changes hands. Often going from the poor to the richer. Here money gravitates so the richer you are the richer you get. Neglecting inflation for one moment, think about it where does new money come from? It comes from other sectors (such as industrial sectors and/or tax) or is fakely created/printed.
What does it mean toxic? It means the scheme becomes a runaway blackhole losing more and more money until the debtors reach saturation. The solution is then to increase further the allowable debt till the same problem comes up again in some future time. Or default on it and everyone is out of the game.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 4:53 pm 
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eric01 wrote:
Reading this thread reminded me of an article i read in business week titled "Why Americans Won't do Dirty Jobs".

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/wh ... 92011.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Why can't more manufacturing be done stateside anymore? As someone else has already pointed out, the $ gap isn't that big anymore --- tack on logistics, shipping, duties, etc... Also, what's the unemployment rate now -- 9%? 10%? Plenty of folks out there. So why can't manufacturing in the US work anymore?

I'll leave out my personal views for now... but the article is a good read. Food for thought.


Bloody lazy and spoilt. The whole world needs to go on minimum wage right from CEO to employee.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 30, 2011 7:46 pm 
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eric01 wrote:
Reading this thread reminded me of an article i read in business week titled "Why Americans Won't do Dirty Jobs".

http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/wh ... 92011.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Why can't more manufacturing be done stateside anymore? As someone else has already pointed out, the $ gap isn't that big anymore --- tack on logistics, shipping, duties, etc... Also, what's the unemployment rate now -- 9%? 10%? Plenty of folks out there. So why can't manufacturing in the US work anymore?

I'll leave out my personal views for now... but the article is a good read. Food for thought.



Particularly in the performance garment industry... they do it better (whether you want to believe that or not).

That's not to say there aren't the resources domestically to equate the quality, but ironically, those resources now have higher minimums and are often more difficult to work with than sourcing overseas. If you aren't doing MASSIVE quantities, domestic manufacturing becomes a puzzle and a chaotic jumble of specialist resources spread sometimes over great distances. Overseas now offers an almost completely vertical operation at more manageable minimums than similar domestic vertical manufacturers. It's not lazy, just that shipping adds up and every time there is something that isn't quite right, finding responsibility is a major pain in the ass. In a vertical operation, I don't care who did what... if it's not right, there is one person to talk to sort the shit out.

For example...
If you aren't able to commit to these massive minimums, then it is likely that:
A. your fabric and all trim will need to be sourced by you through various vendors - ship to sample maker
B. patterns will be made by someone else - ship to sample maker and to grader
C. samples and prototypes made by a sample maker (in this case NOT related to the manufacturer but MAY be related to the pattern maker) - ship to offices for approval / fabric shipped again to manufacturer
D. patterns will then need to be graded by someone else - this is a specialty that people outside of the industry don't realize how difficult or EXPENSIVE it actually is to do well. A lot of people can do it, but few do it well. - ship to manufacturer
E. THEN everything goes to the manufacturer and fingers are crossed that they can use the patterns unmanipulated and everything plays nicely.

however, under the more vertical approach...
A. send tech-pack to manufacturer (prototypes are not even necessary in most cases)
B. receive samples based on patterns they have made
C. approve and manufacture.

I'm not saying that domestic manufacturing is impossible, and for a small company run by a creative control freak ;) - sourcing and finding the best specialist is half of the fun and 100% quality control. But you can see why and how overseas manufacturing is quite attractive particularly when they can achieve the quality you are after.

Hey, more time to sponsor dudes with ironic mustaches... :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 6:11 pm 
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Quote:
The US is still the largest manufacturer in the world(according to the most recent data I've seen). A lot of the cheap stuff gets sourced out because of cost, but not because we're lazy, inefficient, or incapable of quality.

That's true.
Even with the enormous population of China, their GDP is only about one fifth of the USA's

But China is on a very steep upward trend, while we are trending downward.

But we definitely are a little bit lazy (that is just human nature). We are definitely inefficient, because of the enormous burden of regulations and the administration of our welfare-state.
And while we may not be incapable of quality, our methods of doing business discourage quality in favor of cheapness and profit. Meanwhile, China (and other third-world countries) have been increasing their quality dramatically.
Just think of Japan a generation ago: it was all pure junk. Now we think of them as very high quality.

It is a world-wide competetive market nowadays, and we are just not competing effectively. It's like we did a lot of work to establish a lead, but now we are relaxing in the feed zone and the peloton is charging hard.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:55 pm 
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Rick wrote:
the administration of our welfare-state.


Please don't tell me your calling the US a welfare-state. It's more like a your on your own state. Compared to the rest of the civilized world including China The US is pretty far from being a welfare-state.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:54 pm 
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My wife is in the clothing business. She is having all sorts of textile products made all over the world. According to her, China can make everything at least as good quality as anything coming out of anywhere else, provided you find the right factory. After having bought some Rapha items, (which my wife is quite impressed by the quality of) it seems that they have found a good one.

As for your information, the Italian clothing companies are outsourcing massively to Portugal, Spain and Turkey AND they also get a lot of things made in the Baltic countries as well as a hell of a lot in China.

As for Rapha having a historic and retro way to market their products, why not? Do we really need yet an other Giordana or Assos with their pseudo-tech marketing? From my perspective, especially Assos have somehow been able to convince people that their stuff is superior, but e.g. their chamoises are rather standard models from a big company, sewed into an extra layer. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy about my Assos speed suit, but it's nothing special, quality wise and certainly not more than the Rapha Team set I have or my Gore bibs.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 9:48 pm 
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Mario, just reporting a fact as pure information; the italian brand which produce Team Sky clothing is producing the items in my area.
I do know cause I personally know a girl working there.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:01 pm 
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FWIW my argument isn't with Rapha or any other company choosing to outsource to China, but rather Rapha's insistence that it's because they can't find the skill in Europe to manufacture their clothes which I find to be pretty basic(well done or not).

It's my belief that they outsouced to China because they could make more money by doing so. I can't actually blame them for that, as the current rules of trade allow that to go on, but imo they should've just left it alone rather than putting out the spin, which I can no longer find on their website :noidea:


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:14 pm 
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bricky21 wrote:
FWIW my argument isn't with Rapha or any other company choosing to outsource to China, but rather Rapha's insistence that it's because they can't find the skill in Europe to manufacture their clothes which I find to be pretty basic(well done or not).

It's my belief that they outsouced to China because they could make more money by doing so. I can't actually blame them for that, as the current rules of trade allow that to go on, but imo they should've just left it alone rather than putting out the spin, which I can no longer find on their website :noidea:

Probably because you haven't looked at all. It's in the middle of the home page. :noidea:


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Posted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:14 pm 


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:26 pm 
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I did look, but just overlooked it :oops: but it doesn't my feelings on the matter.


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