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Star ratings perhaps, or a league table?!

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StevieB

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OK, this idea has been kicking round in my brain for a while, perhaps its time to air it and get it shot sown in flames :twisted:

Every so often people ask is brand X any good, how does it compare to brand Y etc etc. And others kindly post advice and comments. Would it be possible, or even workable, to have a league table by brand do people think, possibly split into catagories - pro, serious hobby, weekend warrior perhaps?

As an example, people often ask about the nu-tool range, and the fox range is becoming more and more asked about also. We all know that top of the range brands and pro tools are usually distinguishable by price even before we look at the quality (Panasonic cordless drill anyone). We also know that many cheaper models are clones or rebadges of each other, or copies of the more expensive versions fitted with inferior components. As a consequence I dont know whether this would work or not. Two ideas for setting this up are:

1) A simple league table where you give up to 5 stars to either a range or a tool.

2) Comparison to a benchmark.

Problems with both these approaches are for 1) this is not much different to the review system that already exists, although restricting it to brands rather than individual tools may be of some benefit; and for 2) we have to agree a benchmark and people have to have used the benchmark (or another brand/tool in the list) to be able to compare. The benchmark would have to be something like the axminster white range, or perform range I guess.

What I think I am trying to achieve is a list that says something like:

Jet is ranked higher than Electra Beckum
Electra Beckum is ranked higher than Axminster
Axminster is ranked higher than SIP
SIP is ranked higher than Nu-tool

To give people an idea of the quality of the brand they are trying to buy.

Everyone wants the best, most people end up with the best they can afford, and everyone hates wasting money on something that is inferior to their needs. Not sure whether this idea is workable, would be a help or is even desirable so feel free to flame away :!:

Cheers,

Steve

PS Wasnt sure where to put this so feel free to move it if I done wrong :wink:
 
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Anonymous

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Hi Steve

Not sure if anything would be gained from this as most people seem to have different experiences and views of brands and kit depending on their preferences and particularly their expectations.

For instance, I have an SIP P/T that has been superb, I love it and use it most weeks, thus I would rate SIP quite higly and would not hesitate to recommend their P/T whereas anobium punctatum has recenly complained in detail about SIP kit he purchased and would no doubt rate them quite lowly

I don't forsee any correlation except at the top end of the price range, Sheppach, LN, Clifton, PC, Trend etc.

To be honest, I often feel that people lose sight of exactly what they are purchasing when looking at buget tools - in most cases they are OK for low duty usage but are always built down to a price rather than up to a quality.

Cheers

Tony

Who uses quite a few budget power tools without complaint but avoids brand new cheap hand tools.
 

Woodythepecker

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Tony, as you know i am new to this forum and so my post may not carry much weight, but i think that Steves idea may be worth considering, or something like it anyway.

Many thanks

Woody

Mod note: Second copy of this post deleted.
 

Newbie_Neil

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Hi Woody

Woodythepecker":17dy99d2 said:
Tony, as you know i am new to this forum and so my post may not carry much weight, but i think that Steves idea may be worth considering, or something like it anyway
This forum, like all others, will only continue with input from all members.

Tony was putting across his thoughts on the topic and everyone else is entitled to add theirs. We're never going to agree on everything, as there are so many different shades of grey.

There is a lot of merit in Steve's post but after reading Tony's follow up I can also see some problem areas.

Cheers
Neil
 

Alf

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At the risk of this turning into a mod convention...

I think the key problem is the benchmark. Most of us, myself included, have a very limited exposure to various makes - I've never used a piece of Perform kit, for instance. Then there's the added problem of variability within one manufacturer's range. Brand X's dust extracrors are fabulous, but their sanders are terrible, for instance. If I could see a way to work it, I'd be right behind it, but I just don't. The best we can do is continue to review the stuff we have ourselves (note to self - Self, you still haven't done that bandsaw review have you? :oops: ) and if we have something we can compare it to, include that in the review. We may end up with enough info for a league table of sorts that way.

Cheers, Alf
 
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Woody, all posts carry the same weight here wether a new member or one with 2000 posts.
Just to add, for clarification, that I am not neccesarily against the idea, just attempting to point out what I see as a potential and real problem.

I would also add that if pople post reveiws of their purchases on the forum, then we would actually achieve the same aim as this list but also have some qualification of the opinion
 

StevieB

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Thanks for all the feedback peeps, the message seems to be a good idea in principal but probably unworkable in practice since there are really not enough of us. :roll:

The idea really stemmed from me trying to work out what was a clone, and what was a copy, of what. For example in the users PT thread, somebody stated that the perform and SIP PTs were clones, and both were copies of the Elektra Beckum PT. Given that these three machines have different prices, but are all variations of the same design, I still cant decide whether you are paying for the name, quality of different internal components or an actual better performance.

Various snippets are dotted all over the forum like this, but it means searching all the threads and drawing up a list. I agree one manufacturers range may have a wide range of variability (such as the SIP PT - good and the SIP sander - bad) but I was really thinking about large purchases where people would do some research before laying out alot of cash eg TS, PT, bandsaw etc. Sigh, this gets more complicated the more I think about it :!:

Thanks for your thoughts anyway, keep em coming, and as already stated all thoughts welcome and given equal weight :p

Steve.
 

Woodythepecker

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Lads and lasses, i meant that because i am new to this website/forum i am not familiar with how things like steve's idea are set up. In other words you may think "what does he know, he may think that it is a good idea but he doesn't realise the amount of work it entails for so little gain"

Many thanks

Woody
 
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Anonymous

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Steve

I agree that the idea would probably be quite workable for big purchases - ideally any list should include the name of items owned by the person posting their views to allow a more informed decision
 

ike

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I think the most useful information of a review is constructive criticism of features/functions that don't impress and why in a format like "it's a perfectly (capable/useable/droolworthy) etc tool in all respects except (add list)". Let's be honest, I don't think any of us can be 100% objective and totally unbiased of the tools we purchase. After all to some extent we may even be unconciously trying to reinforce our decision to buy it. What about if members collectively agreed on some standard assessment criteria for each tool group when submitting reviews?. It could bolster the worth of reviews, particularly those by different members for similar or identical tools, when making comparisons between manufacturers.

Yes?.. No?.... TAXEEE! :?

Ike
:)
 
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Anyone care to knock up a trial format/template for all and sundry to discuss and consider?
 

StevieB

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Tony wrote

Anyone care to knock up a trial format/template for all and sundry to discuss and consider?
Hmm, OK, since I started the thread I guess I could try a rough template. how about this:

Manufacturer
Model
Price/Price range
Recommended user (Pro, serious hobbyist, weekend warrior)
Pros of machine
Cons of machine
Copy of / clone of if known
Rating out of 10
Better than/worse than other machines of the same type

It is really the better than/worse than and copy of / clone of that I was interested in, but this seems to have turned into standardising all reviews :oops: As I said before we all have a rough idea of a machine by its price - a nu tool jointer is never going to compare to a top of the range jet, but its really at the budget end where the clones and copies exist that it gets confusing (to me anyway).

Ok, feel free to modify/amend the list as you all see fit :D

Steve.
 

Woodythepecker

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Steve, from experience and looking back at previous posts i would add to your list how good or bad the machines manual/instruction booklet is. This one thing is an after thought with a lot of manufacturers, yet for some, the lack of a decent one can turn the pleasure of receiving a new machine into a nightmare trying to set it up properly.

Cheers

Woody
 

Midnight

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OK.. I'll give it a try...

Manufacturer.............Lie Nielsen
Model........................Large Shoulder plane
Price/Price range........£152.10 from Axminster (10% off)
Recommended user...Mk1 Galoots
Pro's of Tool.... It kicks ass straight outa the box, perfect cuts with minimal effort and zero thought involved.
Cons of Tool.... ummmmmm gimme a year or five; I might find one by then
Copy of / Clone of... apparently it's based on the Record 73
Rating out of 10...... 25
Better than/worse than other tools of the same type... it's demonstrated how my Clifton SHOULD have worked...

OK granted It could use some polish... but for a 5 min effort...whatchya think...???
 

Alf

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Midnight":2p3ufiqh said:
Cons of Tool.... ummmmmm gimme a year or five; I might find one by then
I can think of at least 152 of them. :(

Hmm, maybe we need a list of recommended user types first? 'Cos a Mk 1 galoot would have bought an old one for a start, wouldn't they?

Cheers, Alf
 

Midnight

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Hmm, maybe we need a list of recommended user types first? 'Cos a Mk 1 galoot would have bought an old one for a start, wouldn't they?
well....possibly, that;s why I chose galoot over neander.. or would they make their own..??

The other difficulty is that "better" is such a subjective term..

for example.. bitter experience has reinforced my belief that reliable quality is something that I'm prepared to encourage by paying for it. I fully realise that's not everyone's cuppa tea, but how do you quantify which belief is "better?"...

for the record, I'll do a proper review once I've had a bit more "hands on" time with the tool.....
 
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Anonymous

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Mike

Does this mean the Clifton is replaced and returned or supplemented by the addition of a LN?
 

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