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  1. #1
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    Made in the USA - Pugsley, Moonlander and Krampus?

    Wow - great to see QBP working on building bikes in the US.

    QBP sketches plans for a Minnesota-made bike | Statewide | Minnesota Public Radio News

    It's not a done deal at this point, but it would be cool to see a Made in the USA Pugsley or Moonlander roll out of a factory in MN.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  2. #2
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    I approve! I'm glad to see the idea of local production resurface. If this holds and I ever need a new pug frame or if I decide that a moonie would suit me better, I'd love to buy a frame made in the USA. To me it isn't a wuality issue as much as it is an economic and pride-based ideal.

  3. #3
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    Very cool.
    I'm glad I got one of the made in USA 9zero7 frames.
    Riding.....

  4. #4
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    I'm not a diehard buy Canadian/US products only sort of person, but when there is a solid choice made domestically it definitely moves higher on my list of options.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  5. #5
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    This is nice to see coming from a company like QBP, especially with so much downward pressure on benefits and wages in the US labor market.

  6. #6
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    Re: Made in the USA - Pugsley, Moonlander and Krampus?

    Well being the fact that Asian labor costs are rising and the US labor payrate has gone stagnant, then add in costs of having everything shipped to the US, the cost to build here vs Asia is a gap that's rapidly closing. Be awesome to see things come back to the US as is rather buy made in USA any day.

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  7. #7
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    Re: Made in the USA - Pugsley, Moonlander and Krampus?

    That would be so awesome

  8. #8
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    China has accumulated almost all of the West's historical gold reserves and will at some point in the not too distant future dump their US Treasury holdings and back their currency with a much-higher-price revalued gold. This will increase the purchasing power of the Chinese holding their currency or gold, but it will be disastrous for Chinese unemployment, as it currently depends on them manufacturing and exporting stuff. But it will mean that the USA will again be competitive again -- only because wages for Americans will drop to what the "Third World" currently enjoys.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark_BC View Post
    only because wages for Americans will drop to what the "Third World" currently enjoys.
    A stat from 2012 was that the average hourly wage for a Chinese factory worker was $1.36 USD/hr.

    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  10. #10
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    All for buying domestic; even at a slightly higher cost - tired of products that don't perform or clothing that doesn't fit properly; tired of supporting the economies of countries that do not share our...come to think of it...the values we used to have.

    To every thing there is a season, they say; and as pointed out, a bright side, more 'western' employment, and therefore prosperity in the works? A time where quality control of outcome might rise to the forefront? Now, if we can just remove those who are 'riding the brakes' on the economy.

    Sorry mods, but one must make judgments of a political nature if expanded interests in the bicycling world are to bare fruit.

  11. #11
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    It will be nice seeing manufacturing come back here in the States. Think about how many problems we didn't have when we used to make things here...

  12. #12
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    BTW - I have been shopping for a new FS MTB. Both Intense and Lenz Bikes offer high end made in the US mountain bikes. Lenz even offers a chubby 29+ FS bike.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by gravitylover View Post
    It will be nice seeing manufacturing come back here in the States. Think about how many problems we didn't have when we used to make things here...
    So...are you suggesting that we reject the 'new' social engineering 'projects' also? An expanding economy does not necessarily denote a moral society, but a moral society will produce a stable economy.

  14. #14
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    Unfortunately things have "progressed" to the point that I don't think we will ever see a moral society in this country again. I don't actually think I would want total morality anyway, doesn't sound like much fun and would go against my liberal left leanings My hair is only short because there is so little of it left I also don't necessarily think that we need an expanding economy, just one that is stable enough to support a reasonable quality of life for the masses. Historically countries that produce things are generally more stable than those that don't.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sand Rat View Post
    All for buying domestic; even at a slightly higher cost - tired of products that don't perform or clothing that doesn't fit properly; tired of supporting the economies of countries that do not share our...come to think of it...the values we used to have.

    To every thing there is a season, they say; and as pointed out, a bright side, more 'western' employment, and therefore prosperity in the works? A time where quality control of outcome might rise to the forefront? Now, if we can just remove those who are 'riding the brakes' on the economy.

    Sorry mods, but one must make judgments of a political nature if expanded interests in the bicycling world are to bare fruit.
    I think the perception that one can crank out widgets infinitely as a worker or company is what causes much of our trouble. This is laziness and it extends to all industries and aspects, because IMO business is about constant change and constantly trying to find the next product, the next manufacturing process, the next machine that will do it better, the next market to exploit, the next way to exploit that market, and so on. Many LBSs are great examples of what not to do, they sit there year after year trying to just do "what they've always done", which means that mail order shops and new guys that move in get the upper hand. On the other hand, they could make a website that has in-stock parts, trail maps/guides, lead guided rides on certain days as "shop ride", sponsor local rides and activities, organize trail-work, and so on. The possibilities are endless and would draw people back to the shop, but it's not easy, it takes work, like anything. So when looking at the macro-scale, I see the same things. US automakers just wanted to do what they've always done and make the same old crap year after year. It took them getting their rear end kicked all over the asphalt by the japanese to realize they needed to step up their game. This eventually happened, but it wasn't an easy process.

    Business isn't easy and someone will ALWAYS come along to find a way to perform your current process cheaper/easier/quicker. That's the constant in business IMO. The question is what are you doing about it?
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  16. #16
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    I'd love to see QBP move their manufacturing stateside, maybe then they wouldn't have batches of forks that forget to take a trip through the heat-treater?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    I think the perception that one can crank out widgets infinitely as a worker or company is what causes much of our trouble. This is laziness and it extends to all industries and aspects, because IMO business is about constant change and constantly trying to find the next product, the next manufacturing process, the next machine that will do it better, the next market to exploit, the next way to exploit that market, and so on. Many LBSs are great examples of what not to do, they sit there year after year trying to just do "what they've always done", which means that mail order shops and new guys that move in get the upper hand. On the other hand, they could make a website that has in-stock parts, trail maps/guides, lead guided rides on certain days as "shop ride", sponsor local rides and activities, organize trail-work, and so on. The possibilities are endless and would draw people back to the shop, but it's not easy, it takes work, like anything. So when looking at the macro-scale, I see the same things. US automakers just wanted to do what they've always done and make the same old crap year after year. It took them getting their rear end kicked all over the asphalt by the japanese to realize they needed to step up their game. This eventually happened, but it wasn't an easy process.

    Business isn't easy and someone will ALWAYS come along to find a way to perform your current process cheaper/easier/quicker. That's the constant in business IMO. The question is what are you doing about it?
    Excellent point. I can not count how many people I've talked to about business or work ethic who b*tch that someone (usually a stereotype,) is 'takin' our jobs, de derp de der' (to quote South Park,) but can't look in the mirror and see the stagnant attitude and the lack of work ethic.

    At the same time, to go so far as to 'exploit' markets is one of the problems--IMHO that can of worms really started when 'conspicuous consumption' became de rigueur...

  18. #18
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    Making frames one at a time by hand is somewhat glamorous and rewarding. Repetitively welding water bottle bosses 8 hours a day/40 hours a week is not. Large scale manufacturing pretty much dictates an assembly line of people doing specialized tasks, or a highly automated process with many robots and a handful of techy employees. The US is already the most productive (output per employee) in the world. The reasons are automation and more hours per year per employee. Moving production to the US does not necessarily translate to a bunch of (good) jobs. Even so, I'd rather see more stuff being built here than somewhere else.

  19. #19
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    [QUOTE=SmooveP;10614261Moving production to the US does not necessarily translate to a bunch of (good) jobs. Even so, I'd rather see more stuff being built here than somewhere else.[/QUOTE]

    Great point! As a child I was taught that ANY job worth doing (a task need to be preformed) is worth doing well.

    From where does the value of self worth come from? It comes from a sense of being valued, the greater the one giving the value, the greater the value to be received. If a society respects its endower of rights, that society transfers said values to each other. The most repetitive of tasks are not demeaned; though it may be true that all the while in the performance of those duties, one seeks a greater expression of that value.

    I find it somewhat amusing that Surly, a bunch of weird guys, and me being well...I am sure, in the eyes of some, quite straight laced, see Surly as the standard, the banner that flies above any in the fat bike realm. The truth that I have never owned or ridden a Surly product, make it all the more amusing. I don't think I stand alone in that; why; what is it about Surly?

    Then there is the OP; a Canadian, who believes it is a good thing to see more of Made In The USA products; why is that? Even more so when you consider his thoughts on the upcoming 2008 election in the US. That is, unless I have my people screwed up.

    I will stand by him or Surly and say; Praise the Lord and pass the ammo! His post and that of others; is it a far stretch to say that my words are an echo of their thoughts; an awakening, a back lash against the "fundamental transformation of America" that has been taking place?

    To the mods, I am sorry...no I take that back! I shall take the risk of taking a stand.

    Upon my wife's facebook account, there was a video post of a band called Madison Rising. Would give a link to madisonrising.com but if you search it there are other video renditions of their song "Star Spangled Banner" (the song is not what you might think) Check it out.

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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sand Rat View Post
    Great point! As a child I was taught that ANY job worth doing (a task need to be preformed) is worth doing well.
    It's easy to say that, but all of my training for my master's in industrial safety/ergonomics/human factors says that humans are just not great machines. They make mistakes and errors. They are terrible at repetitive tasks and it's quite the undertaking to have a work program that has enough variability and flexibility to allow humans to produce parts and manufactured goods. The point above about welding the same frames all day long is spot on. I wish idealistic ways of thinking were enough, but if they were, we'd live in a world free of errors with everything designed and manufactured to perfection. It takes a lot more than those ideals to ensure quality. It's not impossible to overcome these things, several leading aerospace manufacturers recognize this and know how to shift workers around and generally keep them happy, but these are the companies that are interested enough in being around tomorrow and the next day to invest in their workforce and manufacturing techniques. It's not the quick-fix "I'm going to make something because I have a good idea and I think it will work"-type production.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  21. #21
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    I'm pretty sure the jobs will be more like this https://www.youtube.com/watch?featur...&v=EM0N4dzewIg
    and this https://www.youtube.com/watch?featur...&v=7ZPS_iwoeJg
    ...nothing nearly as dramatic or glamorous as flipping a hood down and sparking-up a torch...should be a couple of good of OSH/HSE jobs though...I oughtta turn in a resume now...
    If Huffy made an airplane, would you fly in it?

  22. #22
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    I disagree that N America has stagnated in terms of originality to make things that go ahead of the pack, leading the rest of the world. Look at Surly and Apple. And Tesla, those things are amazing, they will change the world. I see at least 1 every day driving around Vancouver. You won't see that kind of independent risk taking coming from Japan or China. Nissan had to take Tesla's lead with electric cars. Asians are good at copying the West's independent idea generation and refining the manufacturing processes to optimize it, but they don't have the social structure that fosters this kind of individuality. They are followers and conformers, not leaders. That's not bad, but it's just the way they are.

    The problems with the US and all of western society in general are:
    • Automation technology throws people out of work. Those old jobs from the 60's that robots can do now much more accurately and cheaply are never coming back. Since the world is running out of resources, it is not possible to just build more factories and manufacture more stuff to soak up those job losses. The only solution is to reduce the work week to more equitably distribute the remaining jobs (which is what automation technology is supposed to do -- make our lives easier). Of course, our economic leaders don't understand this and refuse to do so.
    • It's not that American ingenuity has stagnated, it's that the global monetary elites manipulate exchange rates to supppress the value of the Yuan and prop up the US dollar as the world's reserve currency, so that China can suck manufacturing over from the rest of the world but not have to deal with a higher valued currency which would tend to equalize things better and result in a competitive US manufacturing sector. This is why Chinese workers make $1.50 an hour despite manufacturing everything the world buys. It makes no sense, they should all be super rich, but they're not, and that gross market imbalance will correct itself shortly. It's the same reason why Germany is such a manufacturing powerhouse -- they benefit greatly from all the other countries in the Eurozone that drag down the value of the Euro, and this allows Germany to export using an undervalued currency and remain competitive. Otherwise if Germany was on its own Duetschmark it would rise in value to compensate for the trade surplus and then German products would be too expensive and its manufacturing sector would cool down.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark_BC View Post
    I disagree that N America has stagnated in terms of originality to make things that go ahead of the pack, leading the rest of the world. Look at Surly and Apple. And Tesla,
    Look at Merlin, HP and AMC.

    I'd say failure to innovate and come up with new/better products was instrumental in most of these brand's downfalls. You mentioned the ones that did the opposite of this, and for that they've survived and made money. That doesn't invalidate the point. The point wasn't that all american businesses stagnate. The point was that you can't complain you are going out of business/losing money when all you do is the same old thing you've always done (ex: airlines). For those businesses, I have little sympathy when they go out of business under these circumstances, even if "Dey terk err jjjerbs!".

    And yes, automation is a big problem, as in "what do we do with these people?". If you give a grant or tax break to a business, they are going to use it to maximize profits, and if they can get machines that are more efficient than people, they are going to do it in a heartbeat. So much for "trickle down". Now, humans have to design those new machines and perform all kinds of services related to them, but that doesn't offset the people put out of work by the machines. This is one of the biggest issues with capitalism, but I didn't think it was worth getting much into this aspect. You can do a lot with people and come up with things that no one saw coming.
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jayem View Post
    Look at Merlin, HP and AMC.

    I'd say failure to innovate and come up with new/better products was instrumental in most of these brand's downfalls. You mentioned the ones that did the opposite of this, and for that they've survived and made money. That doesn't invalidate the point. The point wasn't that all american businesses stagnate. The point was that you can't complain you are going out of business/losing money when all you do is the same old thing you've always done (ex: airlines). For those businesses, I have little sympathy when they go out of business under these circumstances, even if "Dey terk err jjjerbs!".

    And yes, automation is a big problem, as in "what do we do with these people?". If you give a grant or tax break to a business, they are going to use it to maximize profits, and if they can get machines that are more efficient than people, they are going to do it in a heartbeat. So much for "trickle down". Now, humans have to design those new machines and perform all kinds of services related to them, but that doesn't offset the people put out of work by the machines. This is one of the biggest issues with capitalism, but I didn't think it was worth getting much into this aspect. You can do a lot with people and come up with things that no one saw coming.
    The topic of what defines success and failure is interesting to me. Take one of your examples, HP. I know they've fallen out of favor with Wall Street, but in what universe is a company that has revenues of $100 billion a year and billions in net profits, and provides good wages to tens of thousands of employees, considered a failure?

    Merlin, on the other hand, was probably never profitable. I'm the original owner of a 1990 Merlin MTB frame, and it's still going strong. Some people made a living for awhile, they produced a great product that people revered. So, failure? Not to me.

    AMC? They eventually produced Mitt Romney. 'Nuff said.

    Everything is cyclic. Consistently innovating is not easy to do. It's a combination of genius, hard work and luck. Even then, it doesn't always translate to financial success. Do a search on "Xerox PARC" for examples of how to be spectacularly innovative and not make any money from it.

    Apple is probably the top company that comes to peoples' minds when talking about examples of innovation and financial success, but prior to the iPhone, they were a fairly modest sized company with a cult following and experienced a solid decade of unprofitability. They manufacture almost nothing in the US, and go to great lengths to hide their profits from the taxman.

    "Survival" is relative. How many 100 year old companies can you name? Companies that sell their soul to go public become slaves to the share price, placing stockholders above clients and employees. That path is unsustainable over the long haul.

  25. #25
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    All the politics aside I'm just happy to have more options for buying a production bike frame made in North America.
    Safe riding,

    Vik
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