The Anonymous Widower

Hitachi Ships TransPennine Express’s First Class 802 From Japan

The title of this post is the same as that of this article on Global Rail News.

To my mind, the Japanese do some inefficient things when building trains.

  • It could be sensible to build the first of each different sub-fleet in Japan and ship it to the UK by sea, but what puzzles me is that the body shells are all built and painted in Japan and then shipped half-way round the world.
  • The shipping delay must make production difficult to plan and inefficient.
  • I would have thought they would have built a body plant somewhere in Europe.

CAF may send their trains by ship, but that is only a short sea crossing and because the Spanish rail gauge they can’t tow them through the Channel Tunnel, as the other European manufacturers do.

April 24, 2018 Posted by | Transport | , , , | 3 Comments

Did The Mind Of Buyers Cause The UK’s Surprise Manufacturing Rebound?

This article on the BBC is entitled Pound jumps as UK manufacturing activity rebounds.

This is the opening paragraphs.

The value of the pound has jumped after a survey indicated the UK’s manufacturing sector rebounded sharply in August.

The Markit/CIPS purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the sector rose to 53.3 in August from July’s figure of 48.3. A figure above 50 indicates expansion.

The weakening of the pound following the Brexit vote boosted exports, the survey found.

I also think another factor comes into it – The buyers who are purchasing the goods.

My father’s business was ruined by a bent buyer, who was taking bribes all over the place. When this was discovered, all the suppliers were changed and three-quarters of my father’s orders for his specialist printing disappeared to the only other company locally, who could do it.

My father was not amused and he told me so, in no uncertain terms.

There is also the story of the UK department store chain, that cut the foreign travel budget for their buyers, who were sourcing goods to sell. One unexpected consequence was that they increased the proportion of UK-made goods.

I’ve heard so many tales of bent buyers, and suitcases filled of high-value notes, that I can afford to keep some back for later.

Now though, the UK could have a rather strange advantage because of Brexit.

Say you’re a German buyer of components for your company, that are made in the UK.

Could Brexit on the horizon mean that you’re worried that in a couple of years, doing business with the UK will be a lot harder?

So perhaps now is time to have a last business trip to the UK before it gets too difficult.

If the price is right, it’s also a lot easier to go to Birmingham than Shanghai!

Never underestimate buyers, who are always looking out for themselves.

You are probably a straight buyer, but your family will probably enjoy the UK more than China.


September 1, 2016 Posted by | Business, World | , , , | Leave a comment

The Most Surprising News Of The Day

I must say, I was surprised that Hitachi are going to make London the worldwide headquarters of their rail business.

It is reported here on the BBC.

March 20, 2014 Posted by | Transport | , , | Leave a comment

The Dangers Of 3D Printing

I’m a great believer in 3D printing, as it is a technique, that would have helped me greatly in the past, with some of the companies, in which I invested.

But this story, where some idiots in Texas, have designed a gun produced on a 3D printer horrifies me. Their aim seems to be to give everybody an affordable firearm.

But how do you police such a technology as 3D printing?

You can’t! Especially, as in a few years time, it will be one of the mainstays of small scale manufacturing.

May 6, 2013 Posted by | News | , , , | 1 Comment

Living With British Products Only

A family called Bradshaw have decided that they are going to live using only British products. Their story is here on Kent On-Line and their web site is here.

The BBC also flagged up a web site called Make It British.


Their piece also showed that you can buy tea from Cornwall. Now that is truly a British cup of tea!

January 15, 2013 Posted by | News, World | , , | 2 Comments