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Old Jun 12, 2006, 06:50 PM
Registered User
North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
3,623 Posts
Alert
Another company gone bad.

If your planing to order a new K&B inboard engine for the boat your building beware. I ordered a model 4012 last week and was informed by E-mail it would take 12 weeks to get. That's almost winter. I put a message on their tech support site that I was not exactly happy with that service. I just got a phone call from some guy who didn't even identify himself before jumping on me about what I had posted. I figured who he was and told him that was a lousy way to run a business. He then proceeded to start swearing at me, telling me I didn't a f'n clue, was an f'n idiot etc. If you look at their web site under inboard engines you'll see they show 6 models. They only have one in stock. All the rest will take up to 12 weeks to get. As they say, Buyer Beware. Two weeks ago I also asked their tech support for dimensions for this engine to be sure it would fit the boat. This request has been ignored. I told him to cancel the order but I'll be sure my credit card company stops any attempt to charge me.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 12:12 AM
RC boat Rock Star
Kalamazoo, MI
Joined Apr 2004
2,952 Posts
I don't blame you a bit. Things have been real shaky since MECOA bought out K&B. Too many empty promises and long waiting lines. It could be the death of some of the outboard tunnel classes also seeing how they are the only ones making anything stock over .21's.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 10:10 AM
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North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
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Ron, Glad I'm not the only one. I'll swear that whoever called me either just came back from a three martini lunch or is seriosly unbalanced. Don't think I like someone like that having my credit card number.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 10:33 AM
RC boat Rock Star
Kalamazoo, MI
Joined Apr 2004
2,952 Posts
Someone using that type of language from a business is very unprofessional. Although there are still a lot of K&B owners around, they should keep in mind that they do have competition in the marketplace. The last engines that came out of the old plant weren't that great either. I don't know off-hand what a model # 4012 is but the 7.5's that came out were a joke. The holes in the cases for the crankshaft and piston sleeves were not square to each other resulting in a lot of broken con-rods. K&B tried to push the blame off on the engines owners with really lame excuses like "Your prop must be out of balance!". Some owners never got their boats as far as the water before they blew up! The new style carbs are a piece of work also as the tiny screw holding the low-speed fuel mixture disc kept falling out. I've seen carb barrels that have broken in half. Things were going to Hell in a handbasket long before MECOA took over yet people were hoping that things would improve greatly afterwards. So far, it looks bleak at best for them.
Probably for what you wanted to pay for a new K&B, you could have gotten a better engine for the money. With customer service like that, I'd be shopping elsewhere also.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 03:45 PM
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North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
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Sounds like one of my better moves to cancel that order. Unfortunately I don't know other maufacturers. It's obvious what they are doing there. It's one of the first desperation steps of a failing company. Cut back on inventory of parts and finished goods until there are enough orders in house to immediately recoup the cost. Fine idea until customers start saying adious, which leads to further desperation steps. I must have been asleep during my management seminars (not a bad idea really) when they told us to deal with already irate customers by yelling at them and calling them vulgar names.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 05:35 PM
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North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
3,623 Posts
Ron, you mention engines blowing up. I noticed on the K&B tech support (?) site just before my note someone posted something about a brand new engine blowing up. I can't go check it because my mysterious new best friend has locked me out of the K&B web site. Durn.
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Old Jun 13, 2006, 07:58 PM
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Joined Apr 2006
634 Posts
Electric electric electric. Im sorry thats a little comical though how terrible their service is. You can get eletric riggs.
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Old Jun 14, 2006, 08:25 AM
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granada hills. Ca
Joined Nov 2004
585 Posts
I'm not into model boats anymore, but if anyone is interested, I have a never-run K&B 0.67 inboard, with Prather nitro pipe, for sale. $175.00 +shipping.
PM me if interested.
Jon
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Old Jun 14, 2006, 11:52 AM
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North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
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Jon, I think I'll pass on that offer. Somehow, considering the previous posts, I don't think this may be the best place to sell a K&B engine.
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Old Jun 14, 2006, 01:31 PM
RC boat Rock Star
Kalamazoo, MI
Joined Apr 2004
2,952 Posts
It's not that most K&B's weren't bad engines but some of the later ones had problems. When the people at the old plant found out that they were being sold, lot of parts were going out the door via the 5-finger discount and quality went downhill fast. Then there was the problem with the revisions that they made on certain engines and you had to know which one you had as some parts didn't interchange.
Unfortunately we on the boating side of this hobby/sport see it more than the plane and car/truck people do. There are lots of engines out there that are going to need parts sometime and finding them is going to be the trick. Lately, since the MAC line of engines is getting ready to retool and have a new manufacturer make theirs instead of CMB it will make finding MAC engines and parts harder to find. The new engines will go by the name A/A.
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Old Jun 14, 2006, 02:47 PM
Registered User
Crown Point, IN
Joined Mar 2002
56 Posts
I dont think 20 years ago you could find a model airplane company more popular than K&B. I used to spend hours as a young teen dreaming of what kit I would buy and what I would power it with.

A few years ago, it was finally my time to jump into R/C after years of putting it aside for other responsibilities. I didn't hesitate on buying a K&B motor for my first boat I was building, but now that I am digging in deeper to the sport it was like opening a dark closet when it came time to buy parts for it.

The company changed owners, the K&B website isnt even K&B, the parts lists and drawings are there...but good luck knowing who to call to ask questions about parts swapping, there's no prices listed...ect...and some kind of funky question and answer board instead of being able to write someone at the company with a question. Plus there's no prices on any of it.

How do they expect to sell stub shafts that way? Hobby shops dont carry parts like they used to...you just cant walk in and plop down on a head shim these days, you ORDER it...If K&B wanted to stay in buisness they really need to concentrate on a better website thats user friendly that you can order from. Right now its nothing more than just a manufacturing reference book to look through.

I'm still left dreaming about my hobby.
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Old Jun 15, 2006, 12:13 AM
RC boat Rock Star
Kalamazoo, MI
Joined Apr 2004
2,952 Posts
There are parts out there as I know that some people have some stashed away and it was a good thing too as during the "drought" between the time when things were getting moved, these people had badly needed parts. I person that I know of had $10,000.00 worth of K&B parts put away! I think that he sold the whole lot to someone because of him getting into his own manufacturing business.
I could have picked up a lot of new in the package K&B parts a good year or so ago as an elderly woman had a lot of stuff to sell but wanted a lot more than I was willing to pay.
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Old Jun 15, 2006, 02:29 AM
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Crown Point, IN
Joined Mar 2002
56 Posts
As long as I do not have to rely on eBay for parts I'll still own a K&B.
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Old Jun 15, 2006, 02:09 PM
RC boat Rock Star
Kalamazoo, MI
Joined Apr 2004
2,952 Posts
I just found this: http://cgi.ebay.com/K-B-40-Inboard-M...QQcmdZViewItem and another: http://cgi.ebay.com/A-K-B-40-Marine-...QQcmdZViewItem
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Old Jun 15, 2006, 02:31 PM
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North Central TN USA
Joined May 2006
3,623 Posts
Thanks, I'll give it a shot Ron.
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