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#2955627 03/09/20 03:57 AM
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Interesting article with a number of parallels to the piano industry (IMO).

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/feat...800-000-tractor?utm_source=pocket-newtab

It's about farmers suing manufacturers for the right to repair and modify their farming equipment!


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I've been following this for a while. And I have a long memory for this kind of nonsense. This is an example of a company that will never get another penny from me (when my current mower wears out). I would hate to start adding piano companies to this list...

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Originally Posted by Retsacnal
Interesting article with a number of parallels to the piano industry (IMO).

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/feat...800-000-tractor?utm_source=pocket-newtab

It's about farmers suing manufacturers for the right to repair and modify their farming equipment!


I haven’t been following this in regards to farm equipment. I do see this same issue cropping up in every day appliances and vehicles. The “on board computer” makes home repair of equipment significantly more difficult and the required diagnostics are way too expensive for a DIY repair. Are you really gonna let your friend “Bobby the backyard mechanic” wrench on your Tesla’s battery issues? This is one of the very reasons I would hesitate to buy a Spirio system added to my new Steinway B. “This is assuming I had the scratch to afford one.” This also does have some parallel to the whole “Steinway rebuilding issue” mentioned in several recent threads.


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Owner's rights are limited, till the warranty runs out. smile

I read the article Ret posted, and it was not at all surprising. And, since this thread is somewhat OT, but related to the S&S issue regarding rebuilders, etc... I'll share a quick story of my own, related to JD.

Several years ago, I bought a new Scott's riding lawn mower, made by John Deere, at Home Depot. The salesperson bragged about how it was made by John Deere and was warrantied by John Deere. So, I bought it. And, as my luck would have it, I had some trouble with it the day I bought it and brought it home, cranked it and proceeded to mow my grass with my brand new, Scott's/John Deere mower. Going up a steep hill in my yard, the mower started slowing down, and then stopping, on its own.

I assumed the drive belt was slipping/needed adjusting. It functioned OK going down hill or level, but slowed down almost to a stop going up hill.

Although I'm an avid DIYer, there are exceptions. This was a brand new machine, and I was not about to start making adjustments to the drive belt. So, I called the guy at Home Depot, and he told me to call the local John Deere dealer for warranty. I called the local John Deere dealer and he said the mower was not a real John Deere mower and I needed to take it back to Home Depot. I called the guy back at Home Depot, and he said the guy at the John Deere dealer was wrong, and it was indeed a real John Deere mower and they were supposed to handle any warranty issues with the mower. I was caught in the middle.

So, I took the mower back to Home Depot, and exchanged it for another new Scott's riding mower, with the hydrostatic transmission instead of gear drive. That was the best mower I've ever owned, and I still have it 16 years later; and, I get my parts at the local John Deere dealer, or online, depending on how fast I want the parts.

Moral of the story? Owners have a right to learn from their experiences, take it or leave it or move on to other companies/brands. And, you don't always get what you pay for, whether it's a tractor, a riding lawn mower or a piano (IMHO)... smile

Rick


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Originally Posted by Rickster
Owner's rights are limited, till the warranty runs out. smile

I read the article Ret posted, and it was not at all surprising. And, since this thread is somewhat OT, but related to the S&S issue regarding rebuilders, etc... I'll share a quick story of my own, related to JD.

Several years ago, I bought a new Scott's riding lawn mower, made by John Deere, at Home Depot. The salesperson bragged about how it was made by John Deere and was warrantied by John Deere. So, I bought it. And, as my luck would have it, I had some trouble with it the day I bought it and brought it home, cranked it and proceeded to mow my grass with my brand new, Scott's/John Deere mower. Going up a steep hill in my yard, the mower started slowing down, and then stopping, on its own.

I assumed the drive belt was slipping/needed adjusting. It functioned OK going down hill or level, but slowed down almost to a stop going up hill.

Although I'm an avid DIYer, there are exceptions. This was a brand new machine, and I was not about to start making adjustments to the drive belt. So, I called the guy at Home Depot, and he told me to call the local John Deere dealer for warranty. I called the local John Deere dealer and he said the mower was not a real John Deere mower and I needed to take it back to Home Depot. I called the guy back at Home Depot, and he said the guy at the John Deere dealer was wrong, and it was indeed a real John Deere mower and they were supposed to handle any warranty issues with the mower. I was caught in the middle.

So, I took the mower back to Home Depot, and exchanged it for another new Scott's riding mower, with the hydrostatic transmission instead of gear drive. That was the best mower I've ever owned, and I still have it 16 years later; and, I get my parts at the local John Deere dealer, or online, depending on how fast I want the parts.

Moral of the story? Owners have a right to learn from their experiences, take it or leave it or move on to other companies/brands. And, you don't always get what you pay for, whether it's a tractor, a riding lawn mower or a piano (IMHO)... smile

Rick


I see you're in the USA, as I am. As I understand it, the warranty limitations were legislated away in 1970something. If a company wants to deny a warranty claim because someone else laid hands on their precious hardware, it's up to the company trying to deny the warranty to prove that the work done by someone else was the cause of the problem. Big auto fought this one and lost. I'm not saying that no one will try this one, just that it won't stand up to a challenge.

Amen on the moral of you story.

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I'm not sure the article presents a good analogy to pianos. The article is not really about repairing farm equipment; it's more about access to the software that runs it and that can troubleshoot when there are problems. Acoustic pianos are not run by computers. A better analogy might be to problems with the software that people use when they install computers into their pianos.

There is also a real issue for the equipment manufacturers here. Their software is proprietary, and they do own it. Sharing it indiscriminately with anyone who wants to use it would be problematic and would immediately mean that the company that developed the programs loses any control over them.

Incidentally, safety risks generated by people who have no idea what they are doing messing around with computer programs in gigantic combines (for example) would be legion. Even if they did not actively seek to remove time and energy consuming safety or environmental protection devices, there is no guarantee that their coding skills would be up to whatever task they seek to perform. Even the most aggressive of piano computer systems could not possibly pose such threats.

In any event, the software that controls combines and the like is, I am reasonably certain, copyrighted or patented. We should all be careful about wishing for rules that laws that may reduce or eliminate any value in patents or copyrights. Especially those of us who (unlike me) are musicians composing music that they would like to continue to own after performing it.

I'm not saying that farmers are not entitled to be frustrated. Anyone who owns a newish care will share their frustration. I'm just not sure that the answer is to force companies to disclose their software to anyone who wants it.

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Their software is proprietary, and they do own it. Sharing it indiscriminately with anyone who wants to use it would be problematic and would immediately mean that the company that developed the programs loses any control over them.


So?

They're not a software development house, they're a farm equipment manufacturer. To the extent there is competition in that market it should center around who can make a better (stronger, faster, more efficient) tractor, not who can lock their software down so tightly that nobody can repair the equipment that they've paid hundreds of thousand of dollars for.

If your multi-billion dollar company can't compete with Joe's Corner Garage and Hymie with his pipe wrench, there's bigger problems there than just software issues.


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My question would be are there other manufacturers that have chosen NOT to go highly computerized and produce a product that does almost as much...but is repairable?

If so, then a choice can be made. If not, then that spells PROBLEMS for large farmers, who already have significant problems maintaining their operations.

Pwg


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