Originally posted by cargo
It is my opinion that any type of engineering that comes out of Germany is still the best. Those Germans were so far ahead of the world during
Big difference from 60 years ago to now. Rhinemetal (spelling?) still makes the cannon for almost every modern tank in NATO (i'm not 100% sure about
the rifled cannon on the Challenger 2 because I could never find a designation for it.)
Of course Merkava 4 is all domestic in Israel and it tends to be rated between 3rd and 5th in best tank ratings. It's not like you can't succeed
without German engineering. In fact, isn't the term "Jerry-rigging" a play on "german engineering" from one of the world wars (I know that's
neither here nor there).
The germans make a fine cannon, and they have the industry in place to do it already. This however does not mean that America couldn't pick up the
ball and run with it- it is much more of an established science now. We could certainly duplicate the weapons Germany currently produces for us and we
have virtually no hiccups in beginning to make new innovations of our own, especially because we have such a large population and budget to draw
The US has depended on European companies such as Heckler & Koch, MP5 etc family, as well as Fabrique Nationale, M249 or Minimi. I don't see any
contemporary American cars in other countries except those in the Middle East. Even in Australia, a country slightly smaller than America with long
travelling distances, we don't have any big American cars but our own models. Infact Americans are now buying the Australian Holden Monaro rebadged
as a Pontiac...nice car eh?
Don't get too proud of yourself. When the Monaro was first being checked out as a potential model for the new GTO the test drive turned up incredible
quality control problems. Even the tail lights fell off!
The problem with the US auto industry is not that Americans can't engineer.
The problem comes from several places:
1. Chevy has dominated the US Auto industry specifically by not over-doing the engineering. They use the McDonald's approach of modularization to
improve efficiency at the expense of design. Up until recently (i dont know about new designs) GM had 3 smallblocks which could accomodate any of 6
crankshafts, producing options of 283, 305, 327, 350, 372, 383, and 400. (283 is outdated now, 372 was never produced by GM but came from destroking
the 400 block with a 350 crank, 383 was not stock but was sold as a crate engine- it's a stroked 350.) This is an example followed through GM
engines. GM tries to get maximum use out of ever block design by stroking it into a million different versions. They even have a V-6 (3.8?) which was
made my basically sawing 2 cylinders off of the tooling for a 305 block if memory serves. This reduces the variety of parts needed in the manufacture
of Chevy vehicles and increases the price advantage of high production.
2. Business sense: American car companies dont know what they want to be. They won't abandon the V-6 and make high-compression high RPM jap clones,
and even if they would the main problem they have against the Japanese is style. They won't go for broke on engineering and manufacturing equipment
to play on the same level as the Germans (which we hypothetically could if we wanted the typical American car to sell in the 50+ thousand dollar
range). We're neither here nor there, and if there's one thing that you can't sell people its mediocrity.
Germans (and other Europeans) just have a better grasp of engineering in general. American's have no problems making things look good, but really
that's just superficial. I want things that are efficient and meticulously crafted. As for weapons of mass destruction, American's are probably
number one in that department at the moment. I don't think I'll be buying any in the near future though. But with all of these reports coming out of
Russia regarding their new weapon systems, I see a race brewing.
Definately a race brewing, but I wouldn't say that not cooperating with the Germans is going to hurt us that much. We have the know how and we have
the money- we just haven't got the firms in place who are already doing it. Anyone can do math... even an American.