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Just Wondering

11427 Views 87 Replies 29 Participants Last post by  rbednarik
I was wondering if it might not be a good option for Accucraft to offer their engines in a "Custom tuned version"? When someone places their order they could take their chances on getting a good runner, or pay extra upfront and be assured that it would be. There are other products that are offered this way, why not Accucraft Loco's. If you are mechanically inclined and like to tinker you can take your chances with what is right of the assembly line, and if not up to par, get it running right yourself. If not, (Like me) it would be well worth the extra money charged to get a well tuned runner right out of the box. As it is now, if you have problems you spend a lot of time and shipping expense to and from Accucraft for warranty work, let alone the chances you take with the shippers messing up your prized Loco in route. I think many would be happy to pay more to get a good runner up front and avoid the hassles down the road. What do you think? :)
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the chances you take with the shippers messing up your prized Loco in route.

No amount of tuning is going to solve that problem.

But it would be nice to have a "take it out of the box and steam it before shipping; fix any problems" option. Perhaps the problem is that they are packed in China, so taking it out of the box (and repacking it) is a major expense.
I must admit to having a slightly different perspective, as we once bought a semi-custom boat (real - not a model!) The manufacturer made it, but didn't do a great job of "final test and inspection". The dock guys at their marina were expected to finish tuning air-conditioners, radios, drives, and various other items. We finally got them all sorted, but it took a while and delayed delivery.
I often get the impression that Accucraft feels the same way - especially when they announce a cut-off of March 31 for a particular model (EBT #12) meaning they want to know how many models to make. They aren't doing mass merchandising, and the models are all slightly different; more semi-custom manufacturing.

However, I'll bet Accucraft would look at this thread with concern and regret. I doubt that they want to provide a product that doesn't work out-of-the-box. Correct me if I'm wrong, but is this confined to live steamers? Don't the electric locos work most of the time? And isn't it a random problem: some folks locos work perfectly and others are missing bits, are damaged in shipping, or just don't work right?

The problem, IMHO, is that they can't teach the factory to do the final QC and test before shipping. It can't be a cost/price issue, as the cost of doing it there before packing the loco has to be fairly small. This suspicion is confirmed by the random packing issues: some locos are packed beautifully, and some folk complain that parts are scattered all over the box.

I know they test the boiler, as they send a certificate. But I don't think they run a real live steam test. Maybe we should petition them to always steam the loco before packing and shipping. That produces other issues, such as damaging the perfect finish with the flame, and purging the gas tank completely afterwards, but they aren't insurmountable.
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