Number of posts : 139
Age : 73
Location : Columbus, Ohio
Points : 3417
Registration date : 2012-09-24
|Subject: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 9:37 am|| |
As a controls engineer, I designed, built and installed equipment in GM, Ford, Chrysler, Mazda, Toyota, Nissan, Kenworth and Honda automotive plants and the Marysville motorcycle plant during my career. Of all of these I would say that Honda is the most rabid about quality. This attribute is very frustrating when you are trying to build and install equipment in one of their plants but it is also very rewarding when they finally sign off on the job. It is more important if you buy one of their products.
If I had to find fault with Honda, it would be the derth of color choices for their cars, interiors and motorcycles but everything I have driven or ridden in the last 30 years has had the Honda badge on it.
I have always been a small car person. I live in Ohio so the road salt is hard on vehicles.
I owned four 1970's Ford Pinto's, not bad cars but they would only last about 8 years and 100,000 miles before the salt consumed them.
I had a Dodge Colt which was an OK car but rusted badly. After 7 years, the gearshift dropped though the floor.
An Autostick VW beetle which was interesting. It was a 3 speed on the floor coupled to a torque converter and with no clutch pedal. There was a vacuum operated clutch and a sensor on the gearshift lever that when you put pressure on the gearshift, the clutch disengaged. If the system develops a vacuum leak, which it did several times, then you get to try and shift gears without the benefit of a clutch. My wife came in from the store one day and proclaimed. "You can go out and try to turn that car around or I will tear that gearshift out of the floor". I took that to mean we had another vacuum leak.
Plus the legendary VW defroster/heater was the equivalent to the breath of a hummingbird so in the winter time you have an ice scraper in your left hand for the windshield and the right hand alternates between the steering wheel and the gear shift.
A 79 Plymouth Horizon that is in contention for worst car I ever owned. It shut off any time it rained. At the time, the dealer charged me $35 to run diagnostics on it and declared that there was nothing wrong with it. My wife and daughter were caught in the rain driving from Columbus, OH to Akron. A State Highway Patrolman pulled up behind her to see if he could help. "My wife asked him if she could borrow his gun to shoot the car". It must have been against regulations because once the car got home there were no bullet holes.
Determined to fix it myself, I got a Windex spray bottle and sprayed everything under the hood and could not make it fail. Then I sprayed water into the intake snorkel for the engine air filter and the engine shut off. I put a hair dryer into the snorkel and in 5 minutes it started back up. I went back to the dealer and asked them to do another diagnostic and when I sprayed the water in the snorkel the engine shut off and the technician said something like "Oh fault code 42, bad spark control computer." Apparently there is some sort of sensor in the snorkel that was moisture averse. That was covered under warranty.
With about 25,000 miles on the car it started idling very rough. The dealer asked me if I had replaced the distributor yet. I said that I had never replace a distributor on any car that I had owned. His reply was "well you will on this one". Apparently the Horizon had a VW engine and Chrysler had cobbled a distributor design for the U.S. market. It didn't have bearings or bushings on the distributor shaft. The shaft ran in the aluminum housing and wore out in about 25,000 miles. He told me to go to the parts counter and ask for a rebuilt distributor. He said that Chrysler recognized that they had a problem and the rebuilts were actuallly new. I asked if these had bearings and he said no.
We started having trouble with the transmission. A friend has a transmission shop and he suggested that rather than rebuild it we just get a low mileage transmission from a junkyard and then sell the car. He said it was a bad design. Many places where it should have bearings it had bushings and in places where there should have been bushings there were none. Similar to the distributor.
This car also had many other problems that puts the quality right up there with the Yugo.
A 83 Ford Escort that rivals the Horizon for worst car. It had two significant problems. It was standard shift and it would idle but if you stepped on the gas, the engine would shut off. I discovered that it would also run at full throttle but nothing in between. That made for an interesting trip driving it back to the Ford dealer. The dealer claimed that the carburetor needed rebuilt because I was buying bad gasoline. I bought most of my gas from a local station for every car before and after this one with no problems. They rebuilt the carburetor. Actually, they rebuilt it three times under the 12 mo/12,000 mile warranty. When I returned it again just out of warranty, I was informed that I would have to pay for the rebuild. I argued that if it had to be rebuild 3 time in the first year, something not of my doing was wrong but I lost that argument. The mechanic told me that the good news was that once I paid for a repair, Ford would honor that repair as long as i owned the car. Which meant that every couple of months for the life of this car I could drop it off for a free carburetor rebuild.
The second problem was that after a hot-soak the car would not start. That means drive it till it warms up then run into a store to buy something and return and the car won't start. The heat under the hood causes something to fail. After sitting about 15 minutes, the car would start and run just fine. This problem really put this car in my wife's good graces.
Ford had trouble determining the problem so I bought their 300 page service manual and stuck it and a voltmeter under the front seat so that I could follow the troubleshooting flowchart before the engine cooled off. I finally determined that it was either the electronic module on the side of the distributor or the sensor in the distributor. I bought both. The parts guy told me to put the cheap one on first because he could not accept opened electrical parts for refund. The cheap one was in the distributor and it fixed the problem. I never got around to returning the more expensive one. About a year later I was driving back the 40 miles from the East Liberty Honda plant and the engine just quit. I had it towed home and discovered that there was no spark. Since it had been a year and I had not returned the other part, I had nothing to lose, I put it on and surprisingly it fixed the problem.
In 1988, I bought my first Honda car. It was an 85 Accord. It was a boring gray color but it had nice amenities, it drove nice, got great mileage but most importantly it was trouble free for 260,000 miles. It was the first of many Honda cars and motorcycles that we have owned.
Sorry, I started to write a paragraph about quality and it turned into literature.
Number of posts : 82
Location : benton, ar
Points : 1667
Registration date : 2017-04-19
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 10:15 am|| |
My current herd o' Hondas is a 2012 swing, a 2013 swing and a 2017 Fit.
You are preaching to the choir my friend...
Number of posts : 3826
Age : 78
Location : damn near Philadelphia, PA
Points : 8867
Registration date : 2009-06-12
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 11:32 am|| |
I see that you've a Majesty 400 in your stable. How do feel Yamaha quality compares to Honda quality?
Touring Scooter Rider
Number of posts : 393
Location : New Cumberland PA
Points : 1931
Registration date : 2017-09-07
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 2:54 pm|| |
Good info post.
Honda history, me too.
1 Honda Silver Wing
1 Honda Civic sedan
1 Honda Civic hatchback
1 Honda Accord
1 Honda HRV
1 Honda Generator.
2 Honda lawn mowers
1 Honda tooth brush...oh strike that last one.
Number of posts : 139
Age : 73
Location : Columbus, Ohio
Points : 3417
Registration date : 2012-09-24
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 5:55 pm|| |
Tim, I liked the Majesty but my wife usually rode it. For a one lung scooter it was pretty smooth. Actually smoother than the one lung Reflex that she drives now and of course powerful enough for freeway riding. The Reflex will go about 80 mph but slow getting from 60 to 80. The Reflex engine struggles at freeway speed and can't maintain 80 uphill. The Maj would do 80 all day long. The Maj wasn't great for a tall rider. The suspension was pretty good but not as good as the Silverwing.
We only had it about a year so I could give you any long term assessments on it. My wife, Janie was riding it when she got hit by an Odyssey.
We were on a rural road with a speed limit of 50 mph. It was a beautiful Fall day. The combines were out harvesting in the fields. A pickup truck pulling a full grain wagon pulled out of a field in the distance. We started slowing as we approached the grain wagon which was only going about 20 mph. We were following the grain wagon and had planned to make a left turn at a crossroads just ahead. The intersection was a 2 way stop and the stop signs were on the cross street. We had our turn signals on and Janie was in the lead and I was following her. As the grain wagon cleared the intersection, Janie started to make the left turn. An Odyssey that had been following us decided to pass me, Janie and the grain wagon.
The Odyssey hit the back drivers side of the scooter just as she crossed the median. The Maj came to rest on top of her. She was face down with her one leg doubled up under the scooter. She was conscious and something was burning her. She was begging us to get the scooter off of her. The grain wagon driver and a pickup that was following the Odyssey ran up to help us.
She ended up with a broken collarbone, 5 cracked ribs and a concussion. Even cracked her helmet. The Maj was totaled. Considering the Odyssey's speed, she got off lucky.
The Odyssey driver was taking kids on a high school field trip on a road she was not familiar with and with 6 kids in the car. I can imagine there was probably mayhem going on in the van. In addition, she said that she was in a hurry to find a bathroom and commented that our turn signals were on for quite a distance so she thought that we weren't going to pass the grain wagon. We explained that we weren't going to pass, we were following the grain wagon until it passed the intersection where the accident occurred.
We try to be vigilant about what is in going on in front of us, gravel in the intersection but we didn't consider threats from behind. Life lesson I guess.
Number of posts : 27
Age : 74
Location : Central PA USA
Points : 1803
Registration date : 2016-09-30
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Wed Aug 29, 2018 7:24 pm|| |
Lot's of ways drivers are distracted, even those that are smart enough to be in control. Too bad for your grief and pain!
Silver Wing Guru
Number of posts : 1858
Location : Hocking Hills U.S.A.
Points : 4073
Registration date : 2016-01-29
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:47 am|| |
I got to thinking about the turn signals being on for a ( long ) distance and being caught in your circumstance wishing Honda would have a 4 way hazard switch to use. We have a lot of equipment here like that plus the Amish buggies. Glad yours wan't any worse than it was.
|Mech 1 twa|
Silver Wing Guru
Number of posts : 1132
Location : Allentown PA.
Points : 3254
Registration date : 2016-01-02
|Subject: Re: Honda quality Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:57 pm|| |
The world is in a hurry. We all make errors but poor driving hurts many. Biggest problem is many get off after killing someone with no real penalty. Bathroom not a excuse. BS ..
Be safe out there.