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lost footage of factory tour and more

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Steve_P View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Steve_P Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/05/2022 at 5:39pm
Originally posted by sweatlock sweatlock wrote:

Originally posted by Steve_P Steve_P wrote:

Neat.  Thanks for posting.  
As I've said before, the Kenosha factory was terribly inefficient and outdated.  Transporting partially assembled vehicles around to final assy???   Maybe that was ok in 1950.  In 1981 AMC was still doing things like they were in the 1950s-60s- almost everything by hand.  GM was using robotic spot welding in the mid 1970s, and simple 1 axis automatic spot welding in ~1971.  You can't compete when you're 20+ years behind your competitors in assembly technique and using twice the labor.

I don’t think AMC’s production numbers ever really justified the expense. Back in the Rambler days when they were producing fairly big numbers, the technology wasn’t there. In ‘81, they were producing far fewer cars with a low profit margin and couldn’t justify the investment even if they had the cash available, which they didn’t. Even in the late 60’s, one GM division probably produced more vehicles in one month than what AMC produced of all models in one year. Demand drives improvements in efficiency and productivity. 

They were producing 200K+ cars a year in Kenosha; that's more than most single auto production factories did at the time.  The technology was there in the early 70s, and AMC was still producing cars like it was 1960- because they didn't have the $ to invest.  Just like the didn't have the $ to invest in new car designs- and just kept recycling the same crap.  Rambler, Hornet, Gremlin, Spirit, Concord....  They needed something to fight the Pinto, Vega, Celica....  and all they had a reskinned Rambler with an inefficient 1960s designed engine. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote hacksaw1971 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/05/2022 at 8:58pm
il take that 60's tec ... the 232 in my concord has 198k on it.... gets over 20 MPG. starts every time no matter the weather only uses 1/2 a quart between oil changes and will still cruzz 80 with the rolling computer chips blocking the left lane.
its the little things that make the biggest difference
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote 73Gremlin401 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/07/2022 at 3:53pm
As much as I enjoy watching these Kenosha and Lakefront plant videos - I'd love to see videos (or even stills) from the Milwaukee plant that closed at the end of the 1978 model run. The last two years all they built there were Matadors, at a rather casual rate (something like 60 car bodies a day). That there doesn't seem to be any photographic or video history of the plants internals tells me that as 'primitive' as the Kenosha plant seemed - things over there had to be downright Dark Ages.


73 Gremlin 401/Richmond Gear 5-spd.
77 Matador Wagon 360/727.
81 Jeep J10 LWB 360/4-speed

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Steve_P Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/07/2022 at 9:05pm
Originally posted by hacksaw1971 hacksaw1971 wrote:

il take that 60's tec ... the 232 in my concord has 198k on it.... gets over 20 MPG. starts every time no matter the weather only uses 1/2 a quart between oil changes and will still cruzz 80 with the rolling computer chips blocking the left lane.

I had a Hornet with a 258 that I drove for years, including many long road trips.  Great engine, great car, loved it.  But it struggled to get even 20 MPG even with great compression, a new timing chain, and properly tuned.  How well did AMC, with that engine, compete against the Asian invasion cars that got 50%+ more mileage?  We know the answer.  Honda, Toyota.... are still in business and killing it.  AMC is.... not.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Steve_P Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Nov/07/2022 at 9:11pm
Originally posted by 73Gremlin401 73Gremlin401 wrote:

As much as I enjoy watching these Kenosha and Lakefront plant videos - I'd love to see videos (or even stills) from the Milwaukee plant that closed at the end of the 1978 model run. The last two years all they built there were Matadors, at a rather casual rate (something like 60 car bodies a day). That there doesn't seem to be any photographic or video history of the plants internals tells me that as 'primitive' as the Kenosha plant seemed - things over there had to be downright Dark Ages.



At the end in the 1980s, AMC was still building bodies (and cars) at Kenosha like it was 1960; everything by hand, manually.  I can't imagine that Milwaukee was worse, that would be tough, but....  maybe.

It's a shame that there isn't more photographic evidence of AMCs production lines- just to document how things were done, what colors parts were, etc.  I'm sure that 40-50 years ago there were thousands of pictures documenting it, but very little has survived.  Unlike GM.
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