Originally Posted by rockhopper
Well this n00b is rooting for Jim.
Do all these "HT 80" engine kits I see for sale come from the same factory in China?
To answer your question:
It get's even better! Not only do these engines "not" come from the same factory, there really isn't an all inclusive factory!
There are many small businesses with tiny shops that make the kit components...There are numerous shops that make fuel tanks. Other shops make only mufflers. The next guy makes sprockets...another guy makes the castings...and even another vendor does the mag and CDI...etc.
The "factory", is not really a "factory"...it's more of an assembly, packaging, operation where the owner/international business entrepreneur brings all of the components together in the 5th hour from whoever has sufficient stock. This is why the components will vary in appearance and quality from the same re-seller. Buy a kit from XYZ re-seller today...Buy another one from the same re-seller 4 months later...more than likely the two kits will be, in some way, different. The U.S. re-sellers of these kits have no control over "what" is actually in the kit. A U.S. engineering representative would have to be at the point of operation daily in order to ensure any sort of quality control for a given container load of export kits.
Using a variety of suppliers that specialize in different aspects of manufacturing is nothing new...Suppliers of end-user products have relied on small specialty shops for as long as consumer goods have been available.
The difference is that most manufaturers of end-user products have thier own in-house designers that provide detailed drawings to the businesses that offer speciaty parts. This way the product will always appear and function the same...no matter which vendor actually made the component.
The chinese are very capable of making quality products. Foolishly, the importers of these kits insist on making price the #1 criteria...undoubtedly based on percieved consumer demand. e-bay price wars come to mind.
For very few dollars more, per kit, the chinese could, and would certainly be willing to, clean things up 100%