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  • Chinese tooling

    Well i had to make a couple of ratchet gears for my machines over here. I waited a month for the Chinese boss to get me a 45 degree dovetail cutter,my first mistake.After explaining to her I wasn't getting it just for the heck of it,she finally bought it. Anything I want from my bosses in the states is here under a week, no questions asked.
    So anyway the cutter shows up, and i set up the indexing head, actually the engineer set it up as he know that I have no idea what I am doing because I have only been doing this for 20 years So after he sets it up and sets the mill speed and feed, I slow everything down when he is not looking because the cutter looks like crap already and it is new. I think he is trying to tell me to cut each gear separately and not as one blank. I try to explain to him that if I do it in one set up it will be quicker and less chances for mistakes. I motion to him if he don't like it he can do it as I don't like everyone messing with the machine as I am trying to do something anyway
    So I go to set my depth of cut, which is about 3/16" deep and all the teeth come off the cutter. I only got about 1.5mm deep. So I go to My MSC book and email the states to send me a couple of cutters.
    After I do that the engineer "tells" me I should have done it in multiple passes.
    I "told" him with decent cutters one pass is fine as it is just mild steel.
    The really sad part about the whole deal, besides now they know I don't have a clue as to what I am doing so I'll get even more "help" now is the cutter from MSC is about the same price as what they paid for their cutter

    At least today is Friday and I have the weekend to look forward to!

  • #2
    It's always interesting working in some else's shop isn't it.
    It's only ink and paper


    • #3
      At least i am getting paid!I sure wouldn't be doing this for my hobby over here!In a couple of years when I get home, home will be so much sweeter! I liked before I left. I'll never leave once I get back Altho I would not have pass up this for nothing!


      • #4
        rbregn, how did you end up over there? Must be an interesting story.


        • #5
          Originally posted by Mike W
          rbregn, how did you end up over there? Must be an interesting story.
          He was secretly kidnapped by a Chinese tooling mfg hoping to finally have a QC department
          I just need one more tool,just one!


          • #6
            Don`t teach them too well.

            Beware: you may be about to be sent to the re-education camp.


            • #7
              This isn't exactly about Chinese tooling, but it's fun just the same:

              I'm in Zhongshan, China. I used the company van to transport one of our customers from the office to the factory, and back to office. After I used the van I parked it in the lot, and gave the keys to the Engineering Manager (Chinese guy) so he could run a different errand.

              Five minutes later he calls up to the office. I'm urgently needed to come down to the parking lot. Something's wrong, I've broken the van! So I go down to the lot and he tells me that the car won't start. So, I climb in, drop the manual stick into neutral, and start it up. What's the problem.

              "Oh", he said "you put it into gear when you parked it? Why did you do that? No one ever does that! Don't do it again!"

              Our Engineering Manager. Didn't even look. Ugh.


              • #8
                Maybe I was lucky

                Odd that.

                I have bought some Chinese angle/dove-tail and a lot of other cutters from a Chinese supplier in Australia and they were first class. Perhaps the Chinese supplier here knew what she was doing.

                Yep - woman.

                I first ran into her at a big Mechanical Engineering Expo show in Australia - and the range that she had was huge - and their prices even under-cut the Indians. And the quality was way ahead of anything and anybody else.

                And they knew their tools.

                I asked her what standard or class the 1-2-3 and 2-3-4 blocks, vee-blocks and squares etc. were - and straight off the top of her head she replied "Class 2 (and gave the correct ISO standards)" - and then explained the standard/s!!!. I bought them there and then and have never regretted it. No one else in any of the displays even knew what I was talking about let alone give me the info I required.

                Anyway, it turns out that both she and her husband have Degrees in Engineering and Metrology (China University).

                I have bought a lot of stuff from them here in Australia and their service is second to none.

                I might have been lucky in getting a "good one" - but from a lot of other experiences in the Far East (many years ago) I am more than satisfied with their verbal guarantees as well - they stick to them.

                And for the record, I am neither anti-USA nor Pro-Asian product. I buy purely on the "bang for buck" within my needs and costs.

                One of the best products I bought recently was some American (yep USA-made) clamps from an Australian company that is a subsidiary of Mitutoyo (yep - "that" Mitutoyo (Japan)) - and the service and costs there were very pleasing indeed as well.

                And both companies employ local staff who are quite happy with their employers.


                • #9
                  I am not saying all chinese tooling is bad. I think it has alot to do with who is doing the buying! I did just recently buy an external hard drive though. I asked the boss lady where would be a good place to get one as I couldn't find one in our neighborhood and wanted to know a good place to go. She said to buy one in America, the quality will be better! So I did. My company shipped for free to me so why not. I was expecting to get one when we got here. But the prices are for electronics are comparable from what I have seen. Granted, I probably am not looking in the right spot, I have a couple of years to find out.

                  Mike, how I got here? I was playing down at the docks and woke up in Shanghai! Not really! With out giving away any company secrets, I used to work for a company in Great Falls, MT keeping 14 folding machines running. They are a paper folding machine that makes "jar tickets" gambling games. Well the company was poorly ran so after a couple of years I split, I wasn't going down with the ship. Well a company in the same business bought the leases on 5 of the machines with options for the rest, but they wanted to ship them to their factory in China where they make the tickets by hand. They needed someone to teach the chinese how to work on them and to run them. I was the only one that knew what was needed to do the job that was willing to do it. Our youngest just moved out from home and it sounded like an opportunity of a lifetime. So after some negotiations here I am with my wife in China.They shipped my wife with me, paying for our living expenses and fly us home every 6 months for 3 weeks. Any other flights we pay for unless work related. Overall, we are having a blast. We have been here since april 3 this year and almost have everything set up to run, hopefully by next week I actually start earning my keep. It took a month to get forty feet of airline plumbed with no leaks! But that is another story! I did have a blog about our adventure, but we cant get to it now, so we will update when we are in the states. Will post a link when we get it up this fall!


                  • #10
                    grannygear, it would have been EXTREMELY HARD for me not to have said, "your an engineer and you could not figure out it was in gear".

                    Are the chinese hard to get along with? Are they arrogant, surly or what? Is it just the management or everyone?
                    It's only ink and paper


                    • #11
                      Back About A Month

                      I went to China for a month starting in April. It was an eye opening experience. The people were quite warm and friendly. I have never been treated better anywhere.

                      Rather than live as a Western tourist, my situation caused me to live more like a native. Granted the people that I was with took pains to see that I was okay, but I ate from street vendors, traveled on the trains, rode a bike in traffic, shopped in the markets and spent time in villages and private homes. Constantly I had people wanting their picture taken with me. The only time I had any difficulty was when it was assumed I was wife shopping as I often spent time traveling with Chinese women. Then it was no more than a rude look from a male.

                      My work was not related to manufacturing or machinery, but if I needed something, I just had to tell one of the people working with me and they found it at a reasonable price and reasonable quality. The difference between what they would pay, and the quality they could obtain was remarkable versus price and quality for me. More than once I was asked to wait out of sight until the dickering was over. They dicker over everything.

                      Now, I am quite fond of some of the people I was with. I communicate with a couple of them on a regular basis via IM, email and Skype. I do recognize that they will never have a Western approach to the world. I am not sure that is all bad. By the same token, I doubt I will ever end up processing things mentally in the same manner they do.

                      Hurry does not seem to be a word in their vocabulary. Next year in many instances seemed to be as good an answer as tomorrow. I'm sure communism is as at least as responsible for some of this attitude as traditional Chinese thought.

                      One thing I find strange is that every Westerner who has spent a few days there considers him or herself an expert on China. The place is huge. The attitudinal differences between villagers and city people is at least as great as it is here. I'm sure that my experience no way mirrors that of everyone. I was highly stressed several times while I was there. The differences in food and culture where shocking at times. My attitude was that these things were just incidental to life. Another who considered these things important could have been in the same situation and now be telling you how horrible it was in China.


                      • #12
                        Ok....not to be a contrarian, but I would tend to think that 3/16 is a rather deep cut with a dovetail cutter (I am thinking dovetail end mill and not horizontal milling cutter here so correct me if I am wrong). 3/16 DOC on an end mill...sure....but a dovetail cutter ends up having very weak teeth becuase each tooth is heavily is undercut in two dimensions. Even more importantly, it typically has quite a few teeth in what might be considered a relatively small diameter and there is just not much left there behind each tooth for support.

                        I have not done much cutting with them, but I recently watched a few of them (US made) turned into scrap by being treated as a router bit...trying to cut to full depth in one pass.
                        Last edited by pcarpenter; 06-08-2007, 12:22 PM.
                        Paul Carpenter
                        Mapleton, IL


                        • #13
                          I spent close to 7 months in China in 2000, starting up 3 boilers in a soap manufacturing plant in Tjanjin, was treated like a king. Ate in local restaurants, in the homes of the Chinesee I was working with and roadside vendors, never had any problems. Would go out walking at night, people smiled and waved, or just nodded, I had no fears at all. Most of the engineers I worked with were arrogant and rude, but the middle management and the everyday workers were great. The only problem I had was leaving, the facility, didn't want me to take the "high quality tools and equipment", I brought with me, back to the USA (Craftsman hand tools, Milwaukee 18v drill, drills and taps and Fluke meters). They bought the tools from me, was told tby the Danish contruction supervisor, that its impossible to get this stuff over here. The hard thing for most people realize is that its a totally different culture, with different values. The hardest thing for me was the low regard for human life, I saw 2 people killed during the construction, and the worked never stopped, was told "not to worry, we'll have new workers here within the hour", I guess when you have a billion people, one or two more or less isn't real important. All said if offered the chanc to go back, I'd do it in a heartbeat.


                          • #14
                            I have studied the internal and external Chinese martial arts and have many books on them. I have many books on Chinese culture and history and would dearly love to live in China for a few years. I have been under the impression that the Chinese are friendly and open to outsiders if you are friendly and courteous to them. There is much I would like to learn from them both martial and civil.

                            If you read the history of China you will understand the casual attitude of a workers death. While the family will grieve a death, the power element seldom would.
                            It's only ink and paper


                            • #15
                              You fellows who have work and living experiences in China wouldn't care to elaborate further on worker and management attitudes toward workmanship and quality control would you ? This cultural characteristic seems to be at the heart of many issues raised concerning PRC machine and tool products on this and similar forums.

                              David Merrill