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Australian Members - Page 255

post #3811 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prince of Paisley View Post
I'm glad you brought up that High Street show fxh, it is a very interesting program.

I think what's happening today to the likes of traditional big retailers like HN is very similar to what happened to the small corner stores back in the '60s.

When resale price maintenance was repealed in '64, large supermarkets could suddenly sell the same product at a cheaper price than their smaller competitors, due to their ability to buy in bulk and their lower overheads.

The same is happening today with the dawn of the age of online retailing. Without protectionist legislation, the larger tradtional merchandise retailers in Australia are facing competition from online businesses with lower overheads that can sell the same goods at a discounted price. It's now come full circle that the Harvery Normans of the world are now the victims of free trade, rather than the beneficiaries, and they don't like it.

The only difference to the 1960s is, IMO, the social downside to the loss of Harvey Norman &c. will be far less than it was when the quirky high street corner store went the way of the dodo and we all started shopping in faceless supermarkets and warehouses.
+1
post #3812 of 57939
True that online retailers are now in serious competition with bricks and mortar retailers, though B&M retailers will always have a place in the market as there will always be more people who prefer the traditional shopping experience - touching and trying the items and especially asking for knowledgeable advice. The problem with these large retailers is that the staff themselves know little (a lot of the times even less than the customers) about the items for sale and just basically saying anything to get the sales through. If there is no significant advantage in going into a shop to make purchases, why bother? I would gladly pay a reasonable premium for sound recommendations on items I intend to purchase but know little about in a store. Bring back proper customer service, not sales reps.
post #3813 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prince of Paisley View Post
I'm glad you brought up that High Street show fxh, it is a very interesting program.

I think what's happening today to the likes of traditional big retailers like HN is very similar to what happened to the small corner stores back in the '60s.

When resale price maintenance was repealed in '64, large supermarkets could suddenly sell the same product at a cheaper price than their smaller competitors, due to their ability to buy in bulk and their lower overheads.

The same is happening today with the dawn of the age of online retailing. Without protectionist legislation, the larger tradtional merchandise retailers in Australia are facing competition from online businesses with lower overheads that can sell the same goods at a discounted price. It's now come full circle that the Harvery Normans of the world are now the victims of free trade, rather than the beneficiaries, and they don't like it.

The only difference to the 1960s is, IMO, the social downside to the loss of Harvey Norman &c. will be far less than it was when the quirky high street corner store went the way of the dodo and we all started shopping in faceless supermarkets and warehouses.

+2
post #3814 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prince of Paisley View Post
I have a vintage car. It was very advanced for the 1960s, but it is essentially a slow, gas-guzzling, giant noise machine, when compared to a modern car.

It is also sexy as f**k, but the price for all this sex appeal is a complete lack of reliability and performance.

That's what you get with just about any 50 year old machine... or person for that matter.

All true, but...you still have it and it still runs. There will be very few cars made today that will survive to become the vintage cars of tomorrow.
post #3815 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWraith View Post
All true, but...you still have it and it still runs. There will be very few cars made today that will survive to become the vintage cars of tomorrow.
Just like there are very few cars made 50 years ago that still exist today. The ones that do are ones that have been treated like a baby or completely restored.
post #3816 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheWraith View Post
All true, but...you still have it and it still runs. There will be very few cars made today that will survive to become the vintage cars of tomorrow.

I disagree with this.

Yes I still have it and it still runs.

Firstly, I still have it because it is a beautiful piece of design. Most modern cars look like electric shavers so there is little emotional attachment by comparison. And the price of cars has been so reduced that most people can afford to upgrade every 10 years or so - which was not the case back in the middle part of last century. Back then, people kept old cars out of necessity as well as love.

Second, it still runs - very occasionally - because I spend s**tloads keeping it reasonably roadworthy, and hours of knuckle-grazing labour to fix leaks and maintain the thing. If I didn't, it would not be running at all. If I spent the same amount of time keeping a Toyota Corolla on the road (assuming it had the same aesthetic qualities as many "classic" cars), I have no doubt it would also still be running in 50 years time.

Finally, let's not forget, there were very few cars from the 50s/60s that have survived to become today's classics... and many of those have modern parts in them that replace flawed designs, not just to cover up wear & tear.
post #3817 of 57939
All true, but I think you'd have to pay a heck of a lot more to keep today's crappy cars running to the same condition in the far-flung future. I still assert that there will be very few cars of today around to be classified as tomorrow's vintage cars. They just don't have the build quality to last, even with constant re-tinkering etc. And my father in law has a 1951 Ford, while my dad had until fairly recently a 1970s Ford Falcon, so I know a little about this subject. Trust me, there are more cars from the 50s/60s that have survived than you think. I've been to enough car shows in regional California to know of this fact. Yes, they've often had new parts added etc. but I've never suggested otherwise.
post #3818 of 57939
Modern engines and transmissions are (mostly) bullet proof and will last for decades if maintained well. I also think build quality (i.e panel fit) of modern cars is far superior. Where modern cars differ from older 'vintages' is that old cars didn't have as much plastic.

My mum drove her '86 Skyline in it (the one that did 374,000 km) with no water in it late in its life...pulled into the service station with steam billowing out of the bonnet. The radiator was bone dry...but the engine survived. That car had about 2 or 3 automatic transmission servicing/rebuilds but the engine still pulled strong until the day we let it go...Nissan do make a great cast-iron block straight-six.

But what was starting to go was
a) Electronics
b) Interior fittings.

Injection moulded plastics aren't built to last. They are built to be cheaper and more rapid to assemble/manufacture. But in time they degrade and become brittle, which causes cracking. The locating pins/plugs etc will break and snap off with time.

That's been my experience with old cars (and I've driven a few). As long as the engine isn't too stressed and is well maintained (i.e. regular fluid and filter changes) it can go forever. But plastics don't last.

I'm just reminiscing about the car I drove in England for a couple of years in 2006-2008. It was a 1997 BMW 3-series station wagon. Manual transmission with no electronic fruit salad. Bought it with about 70,000 miles on the clock, sold it to friends with about 95,000 miles on the clock. Mechanically the car was fine but plastic and rubber fittings start to become very fragile. Apparently it just blew its head gasket (at about 190,000 km) but they've had it replaced and its still going strong.

Prince of Paisley - I want to know what car you have? Is it an old Ford Mustang? Or a small British sports car? My wife often admired the look and style of old Mustangs (I can't stand them). We have a few in our neck of the woods, and watching the owners struggle to start them in the shopping centre car park can take away from the 'romance' of them.
post #3819 of 57939
Wraith - you only have experience with Fords. Mate - in that case you have NO qualification to talk about vehicle build quality because they haven't made a decent car since the Model T.

Now for some statistics: 50% of Toyotas that were on the road 10 years ago are still registered. Safe to say there will be a few of them that will still be going in 20 or 30 years' time if looked after properly. Not that anyone would bother with a Toyota, but that's another matter.....
post #3820 of 57939
I worked at Ford Cambellfield as a contractor in 'Virtual Engineering' during 2008. I was involved in aerodynamics and heat transfer simulations using computational fluid dynamics. That was an interesting work experience, especially compared to my previous experiences in the defense/aerospace/motorsport industries.
post #3821 of 57939
Maybe you lot would like to run off and create another thread or visit a car forum and continue this discussion eh?
post #3822 of 57939
I bet, but the company is run by accountants, not engineers. The only Aussie Ford that would rate a mention is the GTO, but even that's overrated and fawned over just because it's local product. It's certainly not a "great" car - it was fast, that's about it.

The Pinto, the Anglia, the Prefect (aka the Defect), the Landau... these are the junkers that are more representative of the output of the over-protected Australian and US auto industries of the mid C20th.
post #3823 of 57939
The problem is that car forums are full of car-obsessed idiots!
post #3824 of 57939
Quote:
Originally Posted by appolyon View Post
Maybe you lot would like to run off and create another thread or visit a car forum and continue this discussion eh?
Sorry, I can be a bit of a car bore (no pun intended), but I'll say no more on the subject
post #3825 of 57939
I'm not getting involved in this discussion or it will continue another 8 pages
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