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shdmurray's picture

Hi Im looking at getting 2 new tools. I would like some feed back.


1 is the inca band saw and the other is the inca joiner planer.


Iwould like to know were to get parts and if any thing to look out for.


                                                                         thanks MIKE

BrentS's picture

(post #98110, reply #1 of 21)

Hey Mike,


  You should check the arcives on this site.There have been a few threads with people trying to find info and parts for Inca machinery.Just use the search and type in Inca.


                                                                  Brent

PhillipB's picture

(post #98110, reply #2 of 21)

Mike,

Welcome to the Knots Forum. I see that this is your first post. There is a lot of knowledge here and many folks eager to help you out.

I have had the INCA 710 band saw for about 8-9 years and would not trade it for any other band saw because it suits my work perfectly. This is not to saw that the machine is perfect. I do not know of any wood working tool that is. I'm simply saying that this band saw does all that I expect of it. You can't ask any more of a tool than that.

There is another poster who goes by the handle of "nikkiwood" who owns the smaller band saw and the planer-joiner you are interested in. He feels the same as I do about INCA products.

That's the good news.

The downside is that Garret-Wade, the vendor in NY that I bought mine from, no longer carries INCA. They do continue to carry INCA parts, at least that is my understanding. There may still be another vendor on the west coast who carries the INCA line of power tools. I am not certain of that.

In all the years that I have owned my BS I have never needed service or parts. That tells you something about INCA quality. And, I use my BS more than any other power tool that I own. I installed my own motor so that is not a concern either.

I don't see much discussion about INCA tools, but in my opinion, you cannot buy a better Brand. There IS, however, beginning to be a lot of chat about European table saws and other power tools, i.e., Fein, FessTool (sp?), and others. The Tormek sharpening system is another European power tool of high quality.

The quality of most power tools flooding the American market is, for the most part, not so hot since they all seem to originate in Taiwan, China, etc. So, it is little wonder that we are wanting more for our hard earned $$ than what is currently being offered to us today.

Some of us have older models of some of the brand names which are now going down hill in quality. So today, the brand names may be the same, but the quality is definitely not. Craftsman is a good example. I have one of their older table saws and it works just fine. I would not buy one of their new ones though.

You can reach "nikkiwood" by creating a new message on your thread and just select the arrows which are to the right of the "To" window and you will see a list of all the folks who contribute to the Knots forum. When you see "nikkiwood" just select it.

Here is the link to Garrett Wade: http://garrettwade.com/

Hope this helps.

Regards,
Phillip

GLAUCON's picture

(post #98110, reply #3 of 21)

I agree regarding your observations on quality. 


There are some power tools made in the Far East that are high quality, there are many others that are not.  What beats me is the inability to tell.  For example, many tool makers are seeking to drop their price point low enough to gain shelf space in a big box retailer such as HD or WM.  They cut corners, outsource, etc. to hit $99.95 and quality takes a hit.  What is even more insidious is the "lines" they develop for big box stores.  You see a friend's Acme Model 457 plate joiner, and you admire it- it's solid, mostly metal, well machined.  You're in HD buying some pipe, and you see in the tool section that they have the same tool- and at a good price.  You buy it, take it home and when you open up the box, it's not the same tool,  It's lighter, more plastic, less machining more stamped parts.  You look at the box and to see if you picked up the wrong model and you see that it's not the Acme Model 457, is the Acme Model 457m- and you've been baited and switched.  True, you should have suspected something when you saw the price, but now, like Wiley Coyote, you aren't sure you want to buy Acme any more- what are they changing that you can't see (like that rocket sled for example)? It's brand corruption.


The thing about LN or Festool or Tormek is that although they are expensive, the quality is uniform across the line. I know, even if I haven't tried it (or even seen it) that a LN plane won't disappoint me. I may not be sure that a particular LN tool is worth it to me for what I will use it for, but I know that it will work and give years of service.  The design, manufacture, quality control and finish will be first rate.  With Festool, even the packaging is top notch, and although I'm not sure I need every jig Tormek makes, if I do need one in the future it will work as advertised.  It's kind of sad that the best Stanley planes are >60 years old, and to remember that Black and Decker once actually made very good tools.


My sense is to buy the best that you can afford, and make them do, adding as you really need (not really want) a tool.  I started with a set of Marples chisels years ago- and used them for everything- mortising locks to cutting dovetails.  I recently invested in a set of LN chisels because it was time to upgrade as I was doing more and finer dovetails.  In the mean time the Blues did yeoman's work for me, and taught me a lot about sharpening (a coda- a friend who recently got interested in woodworking brought his new set of Blues so I could help him sharpen them for the first time.  His are 2-1/2" shorter than mine, and mine have been sharpened hundreds of times. <sigh>)


Glaucon

Glaucon

If you don't think too good, then don't think too much...

PhillipB's picture

(post #98110, reply #5 of 21)

Glaucon,

Sounds to me like "you've been there, done that!" I wish every wood worker could read your comments. Very, very good and the truth as well.

I wanted to say much more than I did but did want to get too opinionated (I am not implying that you did). But, in my opinion, we as a country, - and I do not want to make this a political thing, I truly do not, because EVERYBODY then gets off track - have slowly but surely just accepted the quality (if you can call it that) of what we are offered to purchase in this country. Somebody, somewhere said, "Hey, they'll buy this crap. Most of them couldn't tell the difference anyway, so why not dump this junk at their doorstep? They'll just think it's a bargain anyway. And you know how those American's love a bargain." And so it goes.

I sure cannot speak for anyone but myself, but it took me some time to pay for my INCA, but compared to what I saw and was hearing about other tools, it was a no-brainer for me. Now, how I see it is not how anyone else sees it, that's for certain. I go by this one premise: I don't mind spending money, but I HATE TO WASTE IT! Buying an inferior product which a person believes to be a COMPARABLE PRODUCT is, in my opinion, a waste of money. It takes a lot of time, money, and good materials to make a quality product. I am not Mohammed on the Mount, but that old saying, "garbage in, garbage out", is, I believe, the Gospel Truth.

Your comments about 60 + year old Stanley's was exactly my point: we USED to be able to get QUALITY in this country, but it's not so easy anymore. You have to be very careful what you purchase, you gotta do your homework. There's nothing wrong with a bargain, per se, but when you get slam-dunked with a new item with deceptive marketing, then that's a whole other thing. Makes my blood percolate.

I blame myself for not doing my part. I believe that we should all get good and mad, and let anyone who has anything to do with this decline know how we feel about the inferior products that are being dumped in our market places. And that means products made in this country as well. I, for one, just finished emailing Jorgensen about the problems I'm having with their Cabinet Master clamps, so I'm trying to do my part by letting of a little steam in this regard. I should have been doing this long ago whenever I felt slighted in a purchase. This works for me, perhaps it will work for others.

Take Wal-Mart for a moment. Not too long ago all you heard from them was "Buy American!". Go in there today and you can't get around all of the pallets of "products" from China! That yellow Pac-Man smiley face that you see in their TV ads should have slanted eyes. I have not been in one of their stores in well over a year. I spend my money elsewhere. If we just take a little time we can see other examples all around us.

Take a look at the furniture that we are putting in our homes. Do you see any heirloom pieces in todays modern home? Perhaps in some places. I do not know of any. Do you know why some furniture craftsmen are completely leaving the craft (Scott Schmidt left after 30 years or so, Woodwork February 2004), or doing seminars/holding wood working classes? Because most of us are buying our furniture at IKEA or elsewhere. These same shopper's wouldn't dare think about buying a piece of QUALITY FURNITURE from these great craftsmen.

And do these same IKEA shoppers know how often they will have to make that same purchase in their lifetime? Probably not, but you can bet that it will be more than once. If you buy quality, I guess I should really be saying, affordable quality, then you will be more apt to take good care of it. I don't think that we humans are prone to do the same to less expensive items.

I don't have a solution, and I know that there is no easy answer. But I do know this: we are to blame. Again, someone received the message that we wanted better and less expensive products to purchase. Perhaps the better + less expensive equation does not include quality. If it did, they forgot to make it so.

Your comments "... buy the best that you can afford, and make them do, ..." is timeless. That says it all. I can make do with quality anytime.

Warm Regard,
Phillip Anthony Briles

GLAUCON's picture

(post #98110, reply #6 of 21)

I agree with you- I think the problem is that we want to buy "more". We tend to be driven by marketing, not quality, and mass marketing is out of control. Everywhere you turn you are bombarded: not just on TV, but everywhere. Piles of spam in your email, telemarketing, unsolicited faxes, 25 minute movie "trailers", even the telephone hold music has been replaced by sales pitches. Give money to a charity, they sell your name and you get solicited by a dozen more. The message is to buy more, not to buy the best.  We rate Christmas on retail sales figures- and then whine that "it's gotten so commercial".


I think we can and do make good products in the US- Toyota makes a good truck (Tacoma)- and they make it in California.  The majority of pacemakers, implantable defibrillators and heart valves are made in this country.  Tom Lie-Nielsen is an example.  I understand that he worked for GW, and they kept getting calls for Stanley planes- the ones they don't make any more, and for parts.  He realized that there was a demand for a good quality handplane that was unmet- and decided to fill it.  Many of his planes are based on Stanley designs that are a century old, that he has refined with better materials and small improvements.  Seems like he's making a living.


I think that what LN and other companies realize who target woodworkers, especially the serious amateur ww, is that we are near-Luddites.  It's not that we don't want to use good power tools, or that we have to do everything the hard way, it's that we are not bent on doing everything fast.  Hand cutting dovetails isn't fast and easy, but it is enjoyable- if you have good tools.  I can't afford (or even have room for) a 20" planer, so if I have to plane out a big table top, I'll have to do it by hand (my apologies to Norm Abram).


I buy tools like LN and Tormek (a few at a time) because I don't want to waste money, and I hate wasting wood.


Glaucon

Glaucon

If you don't think too good, then don't think too much...

PhillipB's picture

(post #98110, reply #7 of 21)

Interesting what you say about advertising. Just this past week Andy Rooney expounded on precisely what you're talking about. He mentioned that some major woman's magazine - Vogue or Cos, I'm not sure which - had nothing but advertisement for the first 28 pages, then came the Table of Contents and a few pages later, the Editorial Page (what ever that may be in those rags). I'm not sure what Andy is doing reading those kinds of magazines either.

Anyway, he went on further to comment on the length of commercials during a telecast. He said 20 minutes of commercials was too much and I do believe that you get a large dose of commercials just before the end of the program. I believe that it is then that they know you will not be leaving since you have invested your time watching the show to that point. I also believe that the volume goes up as well. Thank God for the mute button.

I have to add that Andy is on the mark most of the time.

I swear when I read your comments I think that I wrote them. I own a Toyota that was assembled in CA. It's a 1993 4X4 long bed and only has over 250K miles on it. Runs like new. I wouldn't trade it for a new one. No point.

When we first moved to Chicago, I could not believe how many business had our phone number is such a short period of time. And again, another one of those wonderful technological inventions came to our defense: Caller ID. Saved again.

Yes, I heard the L-N story somewhere. No doubt he makes a quality product. I not so long ago had to have a scraper plane to flatten a 8/4 walnut crotch coffee table top that is was making. I looked around and, at that time, about 2 or so years ago, what competition he had was not going to get my money. So, I sprung for his plane with the toothing blade. So, yes, it is a wonderful plane and it does get the job done, but I wish that Lee Valley had had their scraper on the market because it could have still got the job done and left a little more "fat" on my wallet. L-N's are referred to as "heirloom" quality tools and that is fine. I make my own wooden planes, so I guess I've saved enough from that endeavor to justify the L-N plane. Anyway, the coffee table is finished and that's that.

Speaking of Luddites, I consider James Krenov to be my mentor. He completely transformed my life. All of his books seemed as though they were written especially for me. I found this somewhat unnerving at first, but then realized that this was a good thing. It made me aware of the fact that I was not alone in my thinking and approach to wwing. So, because I took what he said to heart, I learned to make dovetails by hand and am a much better craftsman for it.

One of the "foreign" tools which I thought to mention in my last email was all of the wonderful hand-tools which come from Japan: saws, laminated chisels, their mindset toward wood working and so on. Cutting dove-tails with any precision demands appropriate tools. The Japanese dozuki's are the tool for making these wonderful joints. This is one place where practice cannot be skipped. You gotta pays your dues.

I have had a Tormek for number of years. Just a few days ago I received an email from an individual who was wondering how he was going to sharpen his dull jointer blades. He had no mechanical way to get this done. I cannot imagine doing this with a clamp-on guide or something along those lines. Sharpening jointer/planer blades is somewhat of an exacting process: they must be uniform when you're done. Lacking that, vibration and other problems may plague your work. Tools such as this are mandatory if you are to enjoy any success in your work.

And speaking of enjoyable. Nothing compares to hearing that magical "sw-isshh" when that new wooden plane hits the wood. In my view, there is nothing like doing it "the old fashioned way", time be da*ned".

Warm regards,
Phillip

nikkiwood's picture

(post #98110, reply #8 of 21)

I always appreciate reading your thoughtful and insightful comments.

And in this instance, I don't disagree with anything you say. But I do look at this whole issue (declining quality) through a different lens.

We've marching toward a global economy for woodworking tools for maybe 25 years, and have now reached the point where most of the tools are made outside the USA. The move toward globalization has occurred as the big box stores have grown to maturity.

Wal-Mart proved that you can move an astonishing volume of goods if you can keep the prices down. And they mercilessly flog their suppliers to do so. This lesson has not been lost on the folks at Home Depot, Lowes, et al.

So the pressures on the old line tool manufacturers has been acute; to gain access to the shelves of the big box, they really have no choice but to cut the corners necessary to meet the price point. And we all know what that means.

I am interested if you and Glaucon (and everybody else) agree or disagree with all this.

As tool quality hit the skids, other manufacturers saw an opportunity. These were mainly European companies, but a few American firms also saw this same light (Lie-Nielsen, Bridge City, etc.).

As woodworkers, I think we live in the best of times. We have a wide range of quality/price options for almost any tool. You can spend some $270 for a Festool Jig Saw, or $40 for some B-D jig saw that was probably made in someone's backyard in China.

The real problem for us (as woodworkers) is that we have to change our thinking about the established tried and true brands. Names like Delta and Powermatic just don't mean what they used to, and that takes some adjusting on our part. And we have to spend some time and effort learning where the quality has moved to. Up until a few years ago, I had never heard the names Festool, Metabo, Fein, Tormek, Minimax, etc.

Finally, I am not bothered at all that manufacturing has been moving to other parts of the world. It seems to me this a natural outgrowth of economic evolution, and in fact serves to knit the world together in a number of very desirable ways. And it certainly does not seem to have had a deleterious effect on the USA, since this country has been enjoying a level of prosperity unprecedented in its history.

That's not to say I don't have enormous sympathy for the many people whose lives have been overturned and disarranged as manufacturing (and now software development) moves to some other, cheaper part of the world. But as a group, our citizens seem to have a resilience and adaptability that allows us to find new, but different ways to prosper.

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
GLAUCON's picture

(post #98110, reply #11 of 21)

I agree with your comments.  Competition does improve the quality of products offered- Toyota in the 70s did more to improve American cars than Lee Iacocca ever did.


Two things: there is a role for truth in marketing.  The brand corruption and bait and switch mindset will boost short term profits, but undermine long term quality. Second, consumers must demand better quality.  If we spent less time looking for status labels and more time checking the fabric, we'd get better products. Between the 39.99 T-shirt at Nordstrum's and the 3.99 T-shirt at Walmart is a good compromise between quality and price, somewhere between Bridge City and Craftsman you can find a good tool at a good price.


I don't much care where something is made, as long as it is made well.  If it's made in Korea and it's better than what is made in the US, I'll buy it.  Then the US manufacturers will have to improve their quality and productivity to compete.  Stanley could have taken their orignal designs, created a "Stanley Classic" series of handplanes using ductile iron and A2 tool steel.  It would have cost them twice as much to make as what they sell now, but they could have sold them for 3 or 4 times the price. They could have done the casting and hardening in New Britain and the assembly and finishing in a low wage country (like.. Maine).  Apparently it was too small a market for them to bother with, so Lie-Nielsen did it instead.


Glaucon

Glaucon

If you don't think too good, then don't think too much...

PeterS's picture

(post #98110, reply #12 of 21)

Gentlemen

I had the Inca jointer-planer as well, and it was a wonderful machine. I bought it used from Eagle Tools in Los Angeles, the West Coast company refered to earlier in the thread. They have several Inca machines on the floor at all times (used, of course, as they are no longer imported) and have a good stock of parts as well. I only sold it to buy a used MiniMax jointer planer, because I wanted a heavier machine with longer tables. I've also bought an Inca 2100 12" table saw from them, with factory sliding table and European riving knife standard. I wish the American saw manufacturers would get over being paranoid about putting out a truly safe saw, bite the bullet, and start using the safety devices common on Euro saws for at least the last 20 years. I can't believe that they still think we buy their argument that their saws are perfectly safe as long as we don't remove the guards supplied with the machines. If the guards were any good, we wouldn't feel the need to remove them! The Incas are good machines, which shine in a small shop where the user takes care of his or her tools and doesn't subject them to production line stresses.

PhillipB's picture

(post #98110, reply #13 of 21)

Please accept my apologies for not responding to your thought provoking comments in a more timely fashion.

I believe that this march towards globalization actually began much earlier if our focus is not quite as narrow.

As a child growing up in the 50's, I recall that products bearing the "Made in Japan" label were considered inferior to those made in this country. Not so many years later, that same label began to represent items of quality when compared to comparable products manufactured in the USA. Automobiles is a prime example.

I recall all the white and blue collared babble emanating from the automobile manufacturer's and the union's, which claimed that the importation of these "inferior products" was going to destroy the American automobile industry. What really took place is that this turned out to be "wake-up call #2" for Detroit. This event was followed by Lee Iacoca, who quipped, "People want economy, and they'll pay any price to get it." He's another story, but Lee knew a thing or two about the American consumer. He also did a little "globalization" himself by the purchase of Daimler while he was at Chrysler.

During the 60's the VW Beetle landed on these shores. Same banal ranting from Detroit, same results. Again, Detroit failed to see the light. This was the first "wake-up call" which was ignored as well.

What I find amusing in these two examples is that this response (to the needs of the American consumer) came from lands on opposite sides of this country's shores. The vision of the automobile manufacturer's in this country was apparently "cataracted" by their complacency and their inability, willful or not, to provide the American consumer what he/she truly wanted and/or needed. So much for marketing surveys.

Now, your comment on Wal-Mart's ability to "move an astonishing volume of goods" may apply to perishable goods, but I am not convinced it applies so readily to items deemed to have a life-span associated with items of quality. In other words, the fact that they have succeeded at what they have done does not guarantee the same will be true of items found in HD, et al, in regards to wood working tools and items in that venue.

Recalling GLAUCON's comments about an item which he purchased in HD which turned out NOT to be what he was lead to believe, is a case in point. In W-M you are buying (for the most part) the EXACT same items which are offered at say, Target, but at a lower price. H-D is offering a COMPARABLE item at a reduced price which many perceive as a "bargain". Wrong! It may be a bargain for HD, but certainly not for Joe Consumer who was duped into buying it through deceptive marketing practices.

With all due respect to those who are older than a day or two, "There is no such thing as a free lunch." Our forefather's bestowed that bit of sage advice on us many, many years ago and many up-rights still don't get it. They will forever continue to whine about "not getting what they pay for", when in fact, they do.

Going back to GLAUCON, he was cognizant of the product he wanted. What he did not know was that a small "m" had been placed after the serial number of the item he purchased which made it inferior to the item he thought he was purchasing. This is a despicable business practice for the obvious reasons. So, no, what works for W-M may not work for others because we are referring to comparable (perhaps) not the exact same products. Time will tell.

I want to briefly share with you something that James Krenov said in one of his wonderful books. It is this. He said that "the greater the skill of the craftsman, the smaller will be his clientele": the skill of the craftsman is inversely proportional to the number of people who seek his work. This I believe applies to all those who manufacture items of quality. Lie-Nielsen, Tormek, Bridge, et al come to mind.

So, yes, I agree that where a product is made is not the issue: Quality and suitability of intended purpose is. At some point, those of us who inhabit this country, began to believe that the "Made in USA" meant quality. Today, that is no longer the case. Having said that, I will forever be puzzled by those who believe that we "want more for less" and continue on that quest. It cannot be done. You cannot make something from nothing, free labor is a figment of mind, and so on. This is apparently what is taking place at this moment. And, there are those who continue to espouse this doctrine.

You speak of brand names not being what they once were. How true this has become. I have a Craftsman contractors TS which I purchased in February of 1996. The only serious problem I have is that the arbor is not long enough to accommodate all the chipper's of my Forrest dado set: it is too short. The fence is as tacky as most on the market, but I can make it do by carefully tapping it into alignment when necessary. I also own a 12" Craftsman radial arm saw which still continues to serve me to this day. I bought that in the late 70's. I have portable drill made by J.C. PENNY (that is not a typo) which I have had since the middle 70's or so. And I still use it to this day. The chuck leaves much to be desired, but it still functions as intended. How many can say that about today's drills?

Today, from what I have learned, that is no longer the case: quality is much worse. Not living up to one's reputation - name - is indicative of the degradation of quality of most items we purchase.

Why is this so? I see that as a lack of pride. Why, I wonder, do manufacturer's believe that we want "less" quality and not more. Forget globalization for a moment. I always want the best in quality. And I buy the best that I can afford. If I had wanted less quality, those items have always been around. But today in general, it seems, most manufacturer's take little pride in what they do and care less about consumer's who buy their products. I can well understand an "economy line", no problem. But everything in general suffering in quality? I find that offensive.

So, I suppose it safe to assume, that since the time that I bought my TS, a mere 9 years, the quality of wood working tools has gone decidedly down hill, imported or not. This is a shame.

I must admit that I am a non-comformist is many ways, but I believe that I am as conscious about my shopping as the next person. The old adage, "a fool and his money are soon parted" is apparently, known to many who lie in wait, if you will, for the unsuspecting consumer. As you say, we must educate ourselves to know which items are of quality and which are not. That should be our guiding principle in making a purchase. Failing that, our wailing may fall on deafened ears. A person must do their homework to be certain that they know what they are buying.

A few years ago, I was taken by Woodcraft and have not forgotten it. They had what I believed to be this great rubber-like material which they touted as being perfect for holding items in place enabling you to rout a piece without a lot of clamping and so on. It's frictional coefficient was such that it held the work-piece perfectly. And it did do just that. Not long after that I discovered that it was nothing more that the common garden-variety shelf matting found at most local variety good stores for about 1/3 of what I had paid Woodcraft. Deceptive practice? You bet, and I took the bait. And paid the price. This is small peanuts when compared to items which cost hundreds of dollars.

Not too many years ago we began the somewhat unrestricted trade policy with Mexico. I happened to be living in New Mexico at that time and working at a Chevron refinery in El Paso. That policy never worked to this country's benefit. Many on this side lost jobs to the other. Unemployment rose and so on. The story is an old one.

The Chinese now produce a very large percentage of what we consume. Is that akin to "putting all the eggs in one basket?" That has never been a wise decision. Isn't this the same as being "dependent on foreign oil?" Have we learned anything from the oil embargo of the 70's? Have we learned anything about trade deficits? Just what have we learned?

So, lets see. We're still dependent on foreign oil, and now the Chinese, Taiwan, et al, manufacture all of our goods, and ... What's next? Globalization, like anything else in life, may be good and it may be not so good. Are we standing idly by? I wish I had more answers than I have questions for, but I do not.

Well, I've covered the map with a very broad brush. It is my sincere wish that my mosaic of thoughts and words will have some meaning to you.

Regard,
Phillip

GLAUCON's picture

(post #98110, reply #14 of 21)

Thank you for your comments.  Here's a question for you:


What was the U.S.A.'s #1 imported good in 1940?


Answer: coffee.


Glaucon

Glaucon

If you don't think too good, then don't think too much...

PhillipB's picture

(post #98110, reply #16 of 21)

Good thing for that, because I'm afraid I'm addicted. I HAVE to have my coffee every morning. Failing that, the headache begins. Withdrawal pains, I've been advised. Terrible, but true. Thankfully, I do not have to have a cup in my hand for the rest of the day like some I used to know. Some even preferred the "iced" version in the summer months.

Thanks for the historical fact. I never was aware of that.

Regards,
Phillip

UncleDunc's picture

(post #98110, reply #17 of 21)

Where does coffee rank today?

GLAUCON's picture

(post #98110, reply #18 of 21)

It doesn't really.  For a breakdown (ca 1993): http://www.census.gov/epcd/oei/images/fig2im93.gif


Coffee and agricultural imports make up avery small percentage of US imports.


Glaucon

Glaucon

If you don't think too good, then don't think too much...

nikkiwood's picture

(post #98110, reply #19 of 21)

I agree with pretty much everything you say in your long and thoughtful post.

But again, I view these issues from a quite different perspective.

Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in the middle of the 19th century, manufacturing has generally chased cheaper labor. this has certainly caused a series of social disruptions (and a considerable amount of individual suffering), but sad to say, it is a fact of modern economic life.

Do you remember Alvin Toffler from some 30 years ago (his book was called "Future Shock)? His basic premise was that the pace of change (at that time) was accelerating, and economic survival would go to those who embraced and adapted to those changes as they came along. His analysis was certainly prescient, and I think his message may be even more compelling today than it was 30 years ago.

I have since that time made a deliberate effort to avoiding pining away for the "the way things used to be." Sure, we have seen a diminished level of quality in a lot of old line brands, but I'm not bothered by that at all. And that's because I have seen other manufacturers step into the quality void and produce first rate, high quality products for those willing to pay for them. (e.g. my Festool jig saw example from earlier).

In almost any product category you can name, I think there is a broader range available than has ever been the case in the past -- from the low end to the very high end. If Dewalt, to take one example, wants to chase after the mass sales that are possible with getting on the shelf at HD, I don't care at all. I just don't buy Dewalt, because I (fortunately for me) have the wherewithal to buy something better. But I am happy that Dewalt is available for those who choose to buy at that price point.

And as far as globalization is concerned, aside from generally lower prices on consumer products, I think the great advantage is the interconnectedness that a truly global economy fosters. For the last 150 years, most of the great wars have been fought for political or economic advantage. I truly think those days are gone, since the major powers are so interdependent.

Conflicts now, and in the future will be fought on ideological/religious grounds, and between the haves and the have nots. Globalization effectively removed the scourge of war among the major world powers. It remains to be seen what can be done to remove the source of conflict among the warring elements in today's world.

And lest you think I am some flag-waving neocon, I will admit to being a Paul Wellstone/ Kennedy liberal.

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
Peter36's picture

(post #98110, reply #20 of 21)

I believe that products are getting cheaper and of a lesser quality because that is what people want. Companies like Lie-Nielsen don't have to cut corners to stay competative they just build to high quality standards and the people that want them buy them. If you want a $25 dollar block plane then it is available. If you want a $99 queen size bed, it is available. There is nothing wrong with the cheapening of products, unless you are looking for high quality and it is not available. Once again there was the opportunity for L-N. Products are cheapening because that is what people want. Personally I don't shop at Wal Mart, but I am sure that it's prices are a great help to those that need. We can not complain about the performance of a $25 dollar block plane, because that is what it is worth. You want it to perform like a more expensive plane then go spend the money and buy it. Like everything, you get what you pay for.                        Peter

nikkiwood's picture

(post #98110, reply #21 of 21)

<<"Like everything, you get what you pay for">>

Peter, I couldn't agree more.........

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-
DONC4's picture

(post #98110, reply #4 of 21)

I concur with all the great advice about the superioir quality of INCA. I own 2 tilting arbor table saws. Neither has let me down in 11 years.


 

timberrattler's picture

(post #98110, reply #9 of 21)

Mike,


What Inca bandsaw are you looking for? I bought ( I think the 205, I have to check) from Garrett Wade a couple of years ago and have not used it very much.


I will be breaking down the shop in my basement in a couple of months, and may be looking to sell it. Would throw in a couple of blades, throat plates and cool blocks.


Moving into a bigger house, with a bigger shop space. So I will be looking to upgrade my bandsaw.


Any interest let me know. Located on Long Island, NY

sushi's picture

(post #98110, reply #10 of 21)

Hi Mike,  I have the older jointer/planer.  I bought it used and the guy I bought it from bought it new in about 1985.  This machine is great.  There are no problems that you need to be aware of because there are no problems.   I really like the fact that the jointer is 10 inch wide.  Most woodworkers have a 6 inch or 8 inch model.  I am spoiled.  The only thing that I have to do to keep it running perfect is to keep the tables waxed and grease the gear system every few months.  Both easy to do.  I am sorry to say that I can't tell you where to buy the tools or parts.  I was lucky to find mine in the local newspaper.  I don't think that you will regret your purchase.

triplenet's picture

(post #98110, reply #15 of 21)

In the late 80's I bought a used Inca table saw. I thought it would be a real piece of machinery. Instead, I found it nicely made, but inadequate for normal use, The top was sooooo small. I think it had a 10" blade. I seldom used it and sold it.

If one were doing small scale projects, I think it would be fine. It was not adequate to rip even 1/2 sheet of plywood.

But, I love European cars!

Bob