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  1. #1
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    Default Got this ridiculous RFQ

    Hi all,

    We got this insane request for quote. I want to hear what everybody here thinks about this. The company who sent out the rfq is having a very hard time getting quotes.

    A company contacted us and wanted us to make some shafts, basic carbon steel (I asked what kind and they said the cheapest carbon steel we could find). Shaft is 33 inches long with 3/8-16 male threads on each end with a turned section in the middle of about 1.5 inches with two wrench flats. No big deal.

    The shafts then have to be zinc plated. There was nothing on the hand drawn print telling you how far under to make the pitch diameters of the threads and the turned section in the middle before plating. Depending on what class of thread your shooting for, I am pretty sure that for every .001" of plating, the pitch diameter must be decreased by .004" but there was nothing on the drawing about it. I said something to the purchasing agent and they said it was a good catch and they would let the engineers know. Also no tolerance block since it was a hand written drawing and there was no runout, total runout, cylindricity, etc call out either.

    Sounds like a so-so job you might get. The only thing is, they wanted 2000 pieces in a week, with a total of just over 12000 pieces in 8 weeks. Plating would be included in this time too.

    We are a two man shop. Needless to say, we aren't quoting it.

    What do you guys think? Would you have quoted it? We just don't have the man power or the time. Plus, the customer just sounded stingy with the money

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    Id be very wary of the job in total......simple steel job with maybe a flash zinc electroplate is the kind of stuff you get from China under cost of materials in US......Id at least make them supply the steel in advance,which means you ve got something to bargain over if the deal doesnt go to plan.You can also drag out the time frame then .

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    That sort of RFQ gets a polite ''thank you but no thank you'' and if asked for a reason (because some assholes do) they are told ;- I haven't the capacity.

    Or AKA, don't walk away - RUN

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    Quote Originally Posted by cgrim3 View Post
    Hi all,

    We got this insane request for quote. I want to hear what everybody here thinks about this. The company who sent out the rfq is having a very hard time getting quotes.

    A company contacted us and wanted us to make some shafts, basic carbon steel (I asked what kind and they said the cheapest carbon steel we could find). Shaft is 33 inches long with 3/8-16 male threads on each end with a turned section in the middle of about 1.5 inches with two wrench flats. No big deal.

    The shafts then have to be zinc plated. There was nothing on the hand drawn print telling you how far under to make the pitch diameters of the threads and the turned section in the middle before plating. Depending on what class of thread your shooting for, I am pretty sure that for every .001" of plating, the pitch diameter must be decreased by .004" but there was nothing on the drawing about it. I said something to the purchasing agent and they said it was a good catch and they would let the engineers know. Also no tolerance block since it was a hand written drawing and there was no runout, total runout, cylindricity, etc call out either.

    Sounds like a so-so job you might get. The only thing is, they wanted 2000 pieces in a week, with a total of just over 12000 pieces in 8 weeks. Plating would be included in this time too.

    We are a two man shop. Needless to say, we aren't quoting it.

    What do you guys think? Would you have quoted it? We just don't have the man power or the time. Plus, the customer just sounded stingy with the money
    I think I would have just kept my mout' shut and not made an issue of it on PM about NEEDING an ANSWER to "...what everybody here thinks about this."

    I'd not want to be taken for any sort of "interchangeable" component as a standardized fool as the client, y'see.

    Mind.. NOBODY ELSE never-ever even got asked for high-volume stoopid, and screwed outta payment as a boned-us....so... mayhap I'm overly pest-dat-missed-it?

    What was it you did - or failed to do - LAST go... that has them convinced you are a sucker?


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    I would say that these days 90% or more of the work that we do requires substantial interaction with the quote originator. When we get rfq's that don't require three or four back and forth emails/phone calls we consider it very refreshing.

    We are finding that there are fewer engineers that know what they are doing. Most need hand-holding, some need dental work (as in getting the necessary info from them is like "pulling teeth" - is that even an expression any more?).

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    If you think that's ridiculous, you have some easy customers. I see stuff like this fairly often. I let them know I need more info before quoting and tell them my actual lead time off the bat. If they want to do business, they will answer my questions. If not, it's a no quote.

    As far as not knowing how undersize to make the threads, in most cases that's on you to figure out. Just talk with your plater, they should be able to let you know what the build up is. I would also tell them it's a 50% down before starting the work and the remainder upon pickup.

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    ive had those, basically the company is trying to cheap out. and most likely not pay for the parts, and if they do it will be months away.

    If they are serious, as them if they have the material already? good luck finding that much in a short time period

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    Quote Originally Posted by Limy Sami View Post
    That sort of RFQ gets a polite ''thank you but no thank you'' and if asked for a reason (because some assholes do) they are told ;- I haven't the capacity.

    Or AKA, don't walk away - RUN
    I remember being an asshole. Being fresh out of college, not knowing what I was doing, trying to figure it out as fast as possible, getting no-quoted everywhere, being told they didn't have the capacity - but with a heavy tone of @#$^ you. I was miserable. I felt like a leach on the back of everyone who was actually worth something. But I have been asshole free for 14 years now. I get my 15 year coin next week.

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    To weed out the places that think they are too big for their britches, I send out RFQ. I keep it very simple. Latest one I did was huge money and want it now. I got AI (computer generated non person)quotes from many, some wouldn't waste their time, one wanted to chat and not pay attention or was working on his car while chatting. They all missed out. I send out to USA first, then Canada, then anyone. China won, again. Terrific response, follow up, and I forwarded them to engineering. TWO samples are on the way.

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    I'm not so disturbed by this RFQ. It looks like an easy job, which is always nice.

    I'd go back with a simple 'confirmation' request for them to OK the final dimension for plating allowance. Once they OK'd that, it's not my problem if it's wrong.

    I'd also tell them no way is anyone gonna plate those items that quickly, even if they were sitting on a pallet, fully machined. So, I'd give them a new leadtime that reflects the reality of machining and plating times.

    Last, I'd require a substantial up front payment. No skin off my back if they fall down on their obligation.



    So...I kinda think it's an example of people getting too picky and too proud of themselves. It's very hard to fathom in this days of entitlement and laziness - but you might just have to work to earn your way, sometimes.

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  17. #11
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    When I see a quote like this, I look at the lead time. What the crooks out there are trying to do is get you to focus on how you are going to get that job done on time and not 'will I get paid'

    Answer: you will not get paid, or very very late.

    No one gets parts like that in 2 weeks. If you are big enough to get it done that fast, you have enough other work by good current customers you will not stop and get this done for someone you do not know. If you are small enough you do not have the capacity to get it done that fast.

    You cannot quote it for the vagaries of the drawing and of the purchaser.

    I will say that I have long maintained that if anyone invents a time machine it will be a plater.

    Yessir, for a small markup we can deliver those yesterday

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pathogen View Post
    To weed out the places that think they are too big for their britches, I send out RFQ. I keep it very simple. Latest one I did was huge money and want it now. I got AI (computer generated non person)quotes from many, some wouldn't waste their time, one wanted to chat and not pay attention or was working on his car while chatting. They all missed out. I send out to USA first, then Canada, then anyone. China won, again. Terrific response, follow up, and I forwarded them to engineering. TWO samples are on the way.
    You sound like a real winner. Way to go helping China out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pathogen View Post
    To weed out the places that think they are too big for their britches, I send out RFQ. I keep it very simple. Latest one I did was huge money and want it now. I got AI (computer generated non person)quotes from many, some wouldn't waste their time, one wanted to chat and not pay attention or was working on his car while chatting. They all missed out. I send out to USA first, then Canada, then anyone. China won, again. Terrific response, follow up, and I forwarded them to engineering. TWO samples are on the way.
    Did you put it in the PM mfg resource section? Depending on what you consider "huge money", shouldnt be any issue getting done in USA. "Want it now" is the only kind of customer I seem to deal with.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hillside Fab View Post
    Did you put it in the PM mfg resource section? Depending on what you consider "huge money", shouldnt be any issue getting done in USA. "Want it now" is the only kind of customer I seem to deal with.
    lol I always seem to deal with 'I wanted it yesterday"

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    Quote Originally Posted by BT Fabrication View Post
    lol I always seem to deal with 'I wanted it yesterday"
    I got a job subbed from another shop with a due date about 3wks before I got involved. I think their customer was a little irritated. Up to 1wk before isn't uncommon though. That end customer has some pretty wild scheduling. I've pulled a few overnighters getting their stuff done, only to be down there a month later and find parts still in their receiving area. I dont get too worked up about their due dates anymore.

    Got some other guys that are just ASAP, and that means 24/7 till it's done. They do usually make it worthwhile, and really do need the stuff.

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    If you need work and a five-minute phone call would suffice then go-for-it would/might be due.

    likely you spent that much time with writing the post.

    QT : [The company that sent out the RFQ is having a very hard time getting quotes.]

    *Could turn into a great customer with you adding 20 minutes to every job for the expected phone call.

    QT: [The only thing is, they wanted 2000 pieces in a week, with a total of just over 12000 pieces in 8 weeks. Plating would be included in this time too.]
    *That sounds like a decent customer to have...even if you need to hire a temp to help get it out.

    QT: [with a turned section in the middle of about 1.5 inches with two wrench flats. No big deal.]
    One might find stock close enough to not need turning.


    'Hey, Joe the plating is likely to add .002 to .005 per side how do you want me to handle that on the OD, the flats and on the threads.

    *Possible the engineer is the CEO's son or daughter..make friends might be due.

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    "I send out to USA first, then Canada, then anyone. China won, again. Terrific response, follow up, and I forwarded them to engineering. "

    Sounds to me like he 'helped China out' only after the USA and Canadian vendors didn't want to touch it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GregSY View Post
    "I send out to USA first, then Canada, then anyone. China won, again. Terrific response, follow up, and I forwarded them to engineering. "

    Sounds to me like he 'helped China out' only after the USA and Canadian vendors didn't want to touch it.
    That particular wording he used makes me think his entire RFQ process was xometry or those type of services. Not a real shocker he didnt get a more hands on response from a USA shop.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hillside Fab View Post
    That particular wording he used makes me think his entire RFQ process was xometry or those type of services. Not a real shocker he didnt get a more hands on response from a USA shop.
    Or:
    1. The PA made unworkable demands to drive it to China, the land of "Yes we can doo it" even when they fail.
    2. The PA is known to locals as a PIA. and they have jumped thru hoops before quote, always to not get anything.

    The PA's "Legacy" is real, and if local shops have other clients that work out better for them, I can
    see why only lip service was paid.

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    Quote Originally Posted by digger doug View Post
    Or:
    1. The PA made unworkable demands to drive it to China, the land of "Yes we can doo it" even when they fail.
    2. The PA is known to locals as a PIA. and they have jumped thru hoops before quote, always to not get anything.

    The PA's "Legacy" is real, and if local shops have other clients that work out better for them, I can
    see why only lip service was paid.
    True - still hard to imagine there wasn't a smaller shop within an hour drive that would at least answer the phone and talk nice to him, even if that was only to refer him to a competitor.


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