As a modeler, normally my first reaction would be… jeez, what did the manufacturer say when you told them about this?
As the manufacturer, I’d tell you that we stand behind our products and if they really are as bad as you say they are, they should have been returned. I’m sorry that you’ve had these issues and I’ll check with Mike and Dan in the main office to find out how they have handled your call. Unfortunately, I believe that we are sold out, but we’ll see what we can do for you as we may have one or two warranty cars left.
I am quite perplexed about some of the issues that you mention though. The brake reservoir issue does seem to be more common than I would like (an… improvement… that the factory seems to have implemented during production and oddly not universal…) but Ed’s suggested fix seems simple enough. ALL of the other issues that you mention (broken steps, loose pipes, loose brake components) really seem to describe a model that has had some VERY rough handling somewhere in shipment.
I have eight production models of my own (chosen at random and shipped via UPS) and about a dozen (don’t ask…) samples from various times during the design process. With the exception of crooked reservoirs on two of the production cars and one crooked brake wheel (easily pushed back vertical) none of these cars seem to suffer from the numerous ills that you describe.
I am working on a document for the factory listing changes that I want to see made in both tooling and production before the next release is produced, chief among these being to beef up the screw mounting boss on the inside floor to prevent the weights breaking loose (again, an issue had not come up before even during packing drop tests) and going back to the “old” way of attaching the reservoir. I’d appreciate if you could send me (off list) some photos of the cars that you have and the issues that you’ve encountered so that we can see if we can identify the cause of the problems and make sure that they don’t happen again. Meanwhile, I’ll see what the guys have been able to do for you.
From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of email@example.com
Sent: Tuesday, February 4, 2014 2:03 PM
Subject: [STMFC] RE: Rapido Meat Reefers - Brake Reservoir
When I talked about misaligned parts in my original post, less than horizontal air reservoirs were one of the problems...4 out of 7, along with 3 out of 7 non-vertical brake wheels, 2 warpped roof walks, 50% bent stirrup steps, 100% non-attachment of piping to triple valve, 4 out of 7 cut levers, wire grabs pushed all the way in, leaving no space between the car body, brake levers and rodding not connected and all over the place. The lever hangers are in no way attached to the frame as they should be. Throw away the couplers.
I find it incredulous that others on this list, many involved in the development and research of this model, have experienced no problems. Mark Feddersen