The right to repair...

MrAl

Joined Jun 17, 2014
8,868
Hi,

Yes i know what you mean there.

Here some things have gone up wildly like dentistry.
In the same period of time, real estate went up by about 10 times while most wages have gone up by about 2 or 3 times. Dentistry followed real estate, but the wages did not.

I used to fix things for people and make money, long time ago. Now i only fix some things for myself mostly and a few friends. But those are things that have standard components, like the TV and the computer power supply. The TV had standard electrolytic caps so they could be replaced and so did the computer power supply. If it was something other than the caps though i'm not sure if it would be fixable.
 

#12

Joined Nov 30, 2010
18,223
My how times change.

I do agree that participation in my junk-revival scheme should be voluntary. I'd have no interest in helping anyone that's not interested in helping themselves.
If I were incarcerated, I would deeply enjoy some constructive work to occupy the time, but not for 17 cents per hour.
That is correctly being called, "slavery".

http://thefreethoughtproject.com/prison-revolt-refuse-slaves/
http://www.copblock.org/165679/what...y-began-today-heres-why-you-should-join-them/
 
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MrSoftware

Joined Oct 29, 2013
2,027
While I don't know about bikes vs. racing bikes, I DO know there are after market kits you can buy and install on your - oh, lets look at diesel pickup trucks. When you see a truck (Dodge, Ford, Chevy - or any other diesel) belching black smoke out of the exhaust chances are good they've installed a "Tuner" (actually a DE-tuner) to gain more power. ....<SNIP>....
I'm guessing they are not reprogramming the OEM ECU. They're probably using what's called a piggy back tuner, which alters signals to and/or from the original ECU to get the desired change. OR they're replacing some part of the ECU with an aftermarket part (or the entire ECU). There are definitely ways around it, but my general point was the manufacturers make a reasonable effort to lock things up so the average Joe can't easily make changes to the factory settings on their own, without aftermarket support.


If I were incarcerated, I would deeply enjoy some constructive work to occupy the time, but not for 17 cents per hour.
That is correctly being called, "slavery".
I think prison is called free room, board and healthcare. If you factor in living expenses, they're likely paid quite well.

They should divide the cost of operating each prison by the number of inmates, then put them to work doing whatever they can do without risk to society. Dig ditches, break rocks, clean roads, stamp license plates, whatever is safe for each type of inmate. Pay them minimum wage, and deduct their share of prison operating expenses, plus their court fees and expense of the police having to arrest them, from each check. They get what's left. You and I don't need to be paying their way. Think of how much would be available for better schools for our kids, caring for the elderly, etc.. if so much of our income didn't go to paying for all these prisons.
 

Thread Starter

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
7,632
put them to work doing whatever they can do without risk to society. Dig ditches, break rocks, clean roads, stamp license plates, whatever is safe for each type of inmate.
And don't forget Education ... that would probably be the only way to prevent re-incidence after they come out
 
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#12

Joined Nov 30, 2010
18,223
I think prison is called free room, board and healthcare. If you factor in living expenses, they're likely paid quite well.
I think you are deeply naive. Without going into details about why the U.S has 5% of the world population and 25% of the prisoners in, "for profit" prisons, I think you should go to a prison, live there for a year, and pay them to hold you against your will. The experience will do you a world of good.

And no, you don't get education in For Profit prisons and the products of your labor don't pay for charming kindergarten classes for cute little girls and boys.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,866
I used to be a fan of "The Power Block" which was a series of shows devoted to gear-heads. I'd watch them build buggies, rebuild classic cars AND watch them retune the ECU. I've seen them use products that could go in and change the timing, the fuel injection ratios and even retune an engine for use with a super charger. Bully Dog makes a tuner mostly for Diesels.

I drive a Toyota Tacoma. For many years one of the companies that makes a tuner worked on cracking the Toyota code. I can now buy (for around $700)(I think) a tuner that can go in and change the parameters of the engine and get more power out of it.

Like you said (Mr Software) the manufacturers don't want you messing with their tunes for the very reason you site - EPA standards. The thing with these "De-tuners" as I like to call them is that I can set up a vehicle to run with tons of power. When it's approaching time for emissions testing I can set back to the factory original settings and sail cleanly through emissions. Then turn the power back on.

As for prison - my brother spent some time there. He said the living conditions are deplorable (probably deservedly so). The food is not "Grade A", the health care is often performed by those willing to work for GREATLY reduced wages. He had a toothache and the dentist pulled the tooth. Not "Fix" the tooth, PULL it. I have decided prison is someplace I never want to go. But that's not what we're discussing here; we're discussing the right to fix things that break. I'm 100% on board with that. However, likely more than 95% of the population doesn't know how to fix things. So manufacturers are not going to cater to us. Used to be you could go to Radio Shack and buy parts. You can still get parts but RS would rather sell you complete projects. Things you can plug in and play with. I miss the days of pilfering through their parts and coming up with something interesting to make. I once made a device that helps you off of the toilet seat. It involved a flashlight spring (D cell), a battery, a capacitor and a coil. Oh, and some very thin wires to skirt each side of the seat and two metal contacts to act like a switch. Upon standing the spring would hold the wires gently against your flesh while the switch opened and the magnetic field of the coil would break down and "Encourage" you to get up. I also kept cousins out of my room by hooking up such devices to the door knob. Boy did I get a beating for that one. Mom caught a jolt and I caught my head.

The point(s) is (are) fixing things and repurposing things. I have a controller down stairs that was used to control a water softener. The electronics still work but I need something I can set on and off times (not like a clock timer). Don't ask! The point is I'd like to reprogram the PCM chip (I think that's what its called) and replace my mechanical water softener timer. My current timer works on two cams and four micro-switches. Sometimes the timer has difficulty overcoming a trigger, and it will stall. Sometimes half way through. And replacement parts cost $170.00. So I'm cheap (possibly like most of us) and don't want to spend the money. I'd rather reprogram the chip. Things are - I don't have the equipment and I don't have the KnowHow. But why throw a controller that works in the trash? It IS useless as it is, so it has no value. But if I could figure which pins on J1 are connected to exactly what - I'd try and build an interface. That too may be beyond my abilities. Possibly not - if I had clear enough instructions.
 

MrSoftware

Joined Oct 29, 2013
2,027
I think you are deeply naive. Without going into details about why the U.S has 5% of the world population and 25% of the prisoners in, "for profit" prisons, I think you should go to a prison, live there for a year, and pay them to hold you against your will. The experience will do you a world of good.

And no, you don't get education in For Profit prisons and the products of your labor don't pay for charming kindergarten classes for cute little girls and boys.
I don't want to hijack the thread so my last comment on prisons would be that I agree, our prison system is very broken in many ways, for-profit prisons are wrong, and faults in our society and our system definitely contribute to our high rates of incarceration and recidivism. Some people who would truly benefit from education, rehab, structure, etc.. are just thrown away in prison where they get worse. We as a society have a ton to fix in that regard. But the idea that prisoners should be paid anything without first paying their own living expenses is something I don't agree with.

@Tonyr1084 - I forgot about breaking the code to unlock the ECU, that is certainly an option if someone can figure it out.

Which brings up another point; the right to "modify". I think we do, at least in the US, have the right to "fix" anything that you can figure out how to fix. The auto manufacturers do make life difficult for the little guy, but (EPA issues aside) I'm not sure if it's intentionally to screw the little guy, or just because it's the most economically feasible way for them to build their cars. But what we do NOT have is the right to "modify" our belongings. Physically you can change your car tuning with some aftermarket help, but I don't think it's "legal", even if it's not enforced. If you've ever tried to properly tune an EPA controlled weed whacker, lawn mower, boat motor, etc.. you have to go through some steps to disable what the manufacturer has done to prevent you from fiddling, and I believe that technically it is illegal to do that.

So I think we still have the right to fix, assuming you can figure out how. But in many cases what we've lost is the right to modify.
 

Alec_t

Joined Sep 17, 2013
12,735
I'm not sure if it's intentionally to screw the little guy, or just because it's the most economically feasible way for them to build their cars.
Since vehicles are subject to all sorts of rules and regulations it would be illegal in many jurisdictions to make certain vehicle alterations. Manufacturers would not want to be found aiding and abetting any illegal activity, even indirectly. Insurers, too, object to alterations because the perceived risk factor, on which premiums are based, would then be unknown.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,866
Can't swear to this but I believe they've said "50 state legal". It's been a few years since I've watched those shows, I've gone off the cable. Only get regular broadcast TV and Amazon Fire TV. Through that I get Hulu too. Not much more interests me. Besides, I can sit and binge on 24 or Star Trek the Next Generation. Wife and I have been going through all 16 seasons of CSI.

Modifying your cable box to receive transmissions you did not pay for IS illegal. Some states don't allow HID kits to be installed on cars unless they came Factory Original. There ARE laws out there but somehow someone has paid off some senator to pass a bill allowing ignition modifications to ones car for the so called benefits of better performance (which means better gas mileage) (but also more pollution too I'm sure).

So why do we fix things? Because we can? Because we're cheap? My dad grew up in the depression. You threw NOTHING away. Hung on to everything. It may come in handy. My neighbor and friend is that way too - he'll pull nails out of a board and toss them in a coffee can (which are also getting hard to find). Why do we do that? Probably something psychological. I like fixing things for the exercise. I can afford to replace MOST of what I fix. But fixing is more fun. Sometimes I try to fix something just because it probably can't be fixed. Sometimes I find a way. Most often it gets scrapped out.
 

#12

Joined Nov 30, 2010
18,223
I've always wondered why you have to burn more gasoline to reduce what comes out the exhaust pipe. Now that carbon dioxide is considered a global warming gas, I think I will hold my breath until we burn less fuel to create less CO2.:D
 

Thread Starter

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
7,632
I've always wondered why you have to burn more gasoline to reduce what comes out the exhaust pipe. Now that carbon dioxide is considered a global warming gas, I think I will hold my breath until we burn less fuel to create less CO2.:D
And don't you dare dying old and fat ... your decomposing body would contaminate even more! Emoji Smiley-33.png
 

JoeJester

Joined Apr 26, 2005
4,390
Buying aftermarket products to "tinker" with your fuel economy, ruin the atmosphere, and promote global warming ... ya'll are beginning to sound like Volkswagon. :) It's a global conspiracy!!!!!!!!!!!
 

Thread Starter

cmartinez

Joined Jan 17, 2007
7,632

DNA Robotics

Joined Jun 13, 2014
624
"Many lamps sold in Europe come with individual light bulbs that can’t be replaced. So when one bulb packs in, the whole lamp has to be jettisoned."

I had a 40 year old Whirlpool washer dryer pair that I had replaced numerous parts. Belts, heating element, "wig wag", water valve. But they ware getting rusty and ugly. I asked the guys at the appliance parts store what brand I should buy when I replace them. One guy said keep fixing the old ones. The other guy said stick with Whirlpool.

I don't know about energy efficiency but the new washer takes an hour on any setting. The old washer did it in 25 minutes.
 

strantor

Joined Oct 3, 2010
5,910
I've been following Right to Repair pretty closely as it's a subject of never-ending discussion on a tractor forum that I frequent. John Deere has pioneered much of what we see. Sort of a role model for other companies who strive to make unserviceable equipment. They've done the legwork, set the groundwork, paid for the laws, and paved the way. Today they are making tractors where pretty much every part of the tractor has an embedded microchip with a unique ID, which talks to a module with a unique ID, which talks to a computer on the tractor, which talks to a computer somewhere across the internet. If you change out a wheel spindle yourself, the tractor no longer recognizes the wheel spindle and refuses to run until a John Deere technician with a John Deere laptop running proprietary John Deere software, either in person or across the internet, talks to it in encrypted cipher and tells it it's allowed to continue operating. And they claim the software content of their on-board devices under DMCA protection. You don't own your tractor, they do.

There has been some progress on this side of the pond as well.

https://www.brownpoliticalreview.org/2018/12/right-repair-broken-phones/
 

wayneh

Joined Sep 9, 2010
17,166
I've been following Right to Repair pretty closely as it's a subject of never-ending discussion on a tractor forum that I frequent. John Deere has pioneered much of what we see. Sort of a role model for other companies who strive to make unserviceable equipment. They've done the legwork, set the groundwork, paid for the laws, and paved the way. Today they are making tractors where pretty much every part of the tractor has an embedded microchip with a unique ID, which talks to a module with a unique ID, which talks to a computer on the tractor, which talks to a computer somewhere across the internet. If you change out a wheel spindle yourself, the tractor no longer recognizes the wheel spindle and refuses to run until a John Deere technician with a John Deere laptop running proprietary John Deere software, either in person or across the internet, talks to it in encrypted cipher and tells it it's allowed to continue operating. And they claim the software content of their on-board devices under DMCA protection. You don't own your tractor, they do.
I understand how disgusting this is for the user and I certainly agree that lawmakers shouldn't be enabling this. But using the force of law to prevent this will inevitably have unintended consequences. If a company like John Deere can't maintain control over a device in the field, they can't possibly offer the same warranty. They'd end up covering the work and parts of third parties, and that won't happen.

I'd really like to see a market solution to all of this. Smart people will buy brands they know they can service long after the purchase. This was a crucial factor in why my dad always bought from Sears back in the day. He knew that he could fix that mower 15 years later by simply ordering parts out of the owners manual. He would have NEVER bought something without that assurance. Of course those days are long gone. But I'd prefer a phone or laptop with a user-replaceable battery, if I had the choice. The trouble with strong market leaders like Apple and John Deere is that they don't have realistic competition and don't have to offer everything customers want.
 

strantor

Joined Oct 3, 2010
5,910
I understand how disgusting this is for the user and I certainly agree that lawmakers shouldn't be enabling this. But using the force of law to prevent this will inevitably have unintended consequences. If a company like John Deere can't maintain control over a device in the field, they can't possibly offer the same warranty. They'd end up covering the work and parts of third parties, and that won't happen.

I'd really like to see a market solution to all of this. Smart people will buy brands they know they can service long after the purchase. This was a crucial factor in why my dad always bought from Sears back in the day. He knew that he could fix that mower 15 years later by simply ordering parts out of the owners manual. He would have NEVER bought something without that assurance. Of course those days are long gone. But I'd prefer a phone or laptop with a user-replaceable battery, if I had the choice. The trouble with strong market leaders like Apple and John Deere is that they don't have realistic competition and don't have to offer everything customers want.
I'm totally with you on that. The less regulation the better. Or so I want to believe. I wish the free market would self-regulate like it's supposed to and these things would work themselves out. I wish some underdog tractor MFG would come out of the woodwork selling honest tractors that don't need to phone home for permission to operate. But what I see more often than competition, is collusion. Once that underdog starts getting near as big as JD, they'll start pulling the same tricks. They'll lock sync on prices with JD, maybe at a fixed discount, and they'll make their tractors just as hard to service. Then your only differentiator will be color; "do I want the green tractor or chartreuse one?" On that note, I've been meaning to ask, should I buy a Ford, GM, or Ram truck? They all cost the same, have the same warranty, same features, same specs, and come in the same colors. I kinda like the Ram logo, but the Ford headlights look better.
 

Tonyr1084

Joined Sep 24, 2015
6,866
A HUGE violator of the rights of users to be able to fix their own equipment is Printer Manufacturers. After so long they discontinue the ink and you have no choice but to get a new machine. However, often the ink alone is as expensive or even MORE expensive than buying a whole new machine.

Refill your ink cartridge? They have a way of determining if the cartridge has been refilled. It won't work. So refill kits don't work because manufacturers want you to come buy from them.

My dad grew up through the Great Depression. He learned that if you wanted or needed something you simply MADE it yourself. He bought a Model-T for a dollar and drove it up a mountain. Little did he know, the coolant leaked out. The engine was so hot it would not shut off. He used the clutch to stall the motor. Figured it would probably be frozen when he tried to start it later but it started right up and he drove it back down the mountain.

I learned a lot from my father. He had many things around the house that he made. Things you can't buy but should be able to. Pretty smart guy. I learned from him. I mostly learned that I can attempt to fix anything. Often I CAN fix things. Mom's washer failed. They wanted $400 (US dollars) to replace the entire mechanical section of the washer. All that was bad was a mode shift coil. And at that, it was a fusible link that blew. The coil could be removed with just two bolts. I drilled out the rivets and opened the case to find a pristine coil and a blown fusible link. Replaced the link (cost $1.98 {tax not included}), riveted it back together, installed it and to this day it still operates. Originally failed after two years of light use. That was eight years ago, and under a family size load (not just one little old lady who washed her undies and socks in it).

Fix it. Make it. Or do without it. That was my dad's mantra. And I DID make things. A supercharger for my mini-bike. And it ran! We swear it was faster and more powerful; but it probably wasn't. Kind of like when you wash and wax your car - it FEELS like it drives better.
 
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