Author Topic: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)  (Read 2688 times)

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Offline Zero999

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #25 on: March 11, 2021, 10:32:26 am »

What are all the brexitard^h^h^h^h^h  freedom loving leave voters going to think about staying in sync with the Brussels tyranny??
The EUtards have proven how useless they are by completely hashing the vaccine rollout. The UK bypassed their crappy vaccine programme and has done much better. Now other states are following suite, with some Eastern European counties even going to Russia, for the vaccine because the EU are so inept.

I actually voted remain, because I belived it's better for business: less paperwork and being able to employ low skilled workers from Eastern Europe. I admit, there have been a few delays on parts from the EU, but time will tell whether it's as bad as many believe.

I hope the UK will go much further with this law. Not only should appliances be easy to repair, but they should also be designed to last for at least 10 years, with only cheap, consumable parts needing replacement. Scrap dealers should be able to salvage any working parts and sell them.

Companies should also be discouraged from destroying perfectly useable equipment. If they need to get rid of it, but can't sell, for tax reasons, then they should be able to call someone to take it off their hands for free. The only exception to this is if the equipment is covered by something like ITAR.
 
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Offline Galenbo

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #26 on: March 11, 2021, 03:28:26 pm »
... by completely hashing the vaccine rollout.
Ah you mean the untested solution for a disease that doesn't exist, based on falsified "numbers" coming from an irrelevant test method...
Those conspiracy theorists...pfff
If you try and take a cat apart to see how it works, the first thing you have on your hands is a nonworking cat.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #27 on: March 11, 2021, 03:46:35 pm »
... by completely hashing the vaccine rollout.
Ah you mean the untested solution for a disease that doesn't exist, based on falsified "numbers" coming from an irrelevant test method...
Those conspiracy theorists...pfff
It doesn't exist, until you know someone who's been seriously affected by it.  :palm: Take your conspiracy theories elsewhere.
 
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Offline Exosia

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #28 on: April 04, 2021, 10:07:30 am »
 

Offline Galenbo

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #29 on: April 08, 2021, 09:49:00 pm »
... Take your conspiracy theories elsewhere.
...said the conspiracy theorist that even doesn't understand Bayes theorem.
:palm:
If you try and take a cat apart to see how it works, the first thing you have on your hands is a nonworking cat.
 

Offline jpanhalt

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #30 on: April 08, 2021, 09:57:27 pm »
I do not know what Mahindra's policies are, but I suspect they are nowhere nearly as draconian as JD's. Why not let the market decide?  Of course, I have a conflict.  My tractor is an early 2000 Case with very low time.  I like to see it appreciate in value.
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #31 on: April 09, 2021, 07:51:24 am »
... by completely hashing the vaccine rollout.
Ah you mean the untested solution for a disease that doesn't exist, based on falsified "numbers" coming from an irrelevant test method...
Those conspiracy theorists...pfff
It doesn't exist, until you know someone who's been seriously affected by it.  :palm: Take your conspiracy theories elsewhere.
...said the conspiracy theorist that even doesn't understand Bayes theorem.
:palm:
It took you nearly a month to come back with that crap.  :palm: You're the one making false statements. Troll.
I do not know what Mahindra's policies are, but I suspect they are nowhere nearly as draconian as JD's. Why not let the market decide?  Of course, I have a conflict.  My tractor is an early 2000 Case with very low time.  I like to see it appreciate in value.
Market forces often act against the individual, because many people make poor choices and large companies dominate certain sectors.

Consumers often opt for lower upfront cost, rather than looking at the total cost of ownership. A classic example is the old incandescent light bulb which is very cheap to buy, but ends up costing more in increased electricity costs, compared to alternatives such as LED, with a higher upfront cost. This is why we need some level of regulation.
« Last Edit: April 09, 2021, 08:01:23 am by Zero999 »
 

Online SilverSolder

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to fascilitate repairs :)
« Reply #32 on: April 09, 2021, 12:34:45 pm »
[...]
Market forces often act against the individual, because many people make poor choices and large companies dominate certain sectors.

Consumers often opt for lower upfront cost, rather than looking at the total cost of ownership. A classic example is the old incandescent light bulb which is very cheap to buy, but ends up costing more in increased electricity costs, compared to alternatives such as LED, with a higher upfront cost. This is why we need some level of regulation.
[...]

Consumers are naive in the extreme.  Take, for example, the market for housing, or cars.  People go all romantic about their dream homes/cars, and the only limit to how much they will pay is what the bank is willing to lend them.  Then, in hock to their eyeballs, with monthly payments for house, car, music, underwear, whatever someone managed to get them to pony up for monthly -   they end up with less discretionary spending power than the 15 year old boy working at the gas station...   so they buy the cheapest possible light bulb, because "we have to save money SOMEWHERE"!  :D
« Last Edit: April 09, 2021, 12:36:59 pm by SilverSolder »
 

Offline Syntax Error

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #33 on: April 13, 2021, 02:09:58 pm »
This still comes down to those two old phrases, "beyond economic repair" and "no user servicable parts inside".

Often good things get dumpsterized simply because it's just not worth doing the repair. The price of the parts often exceeds the price of a new product. Which is a reflection of the economic cost of holding spares in a warehouse for years/decades plus, keeping a service team fully employed over the same period. Thus, my neighbour spent £150 having his lawn mower serviced. A new one is £190. But they did polish the roller.

Another barrier to servicing is the skillset required to affect a repair. Give you guys here on the EEVBlog a dead oscilloscope from a dumpster find and, in a few days, it will be giving years more of faultless service. Give the same to one of the "highly trained" monkeys at Acme Fixit Inc, and it goes back into the dumpster; because the fix was "too complex" or, they didn't know where to find a service manual. Or even how to read it.
 

Online SilverSolder

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #34 on: April 13, 2021, 04:50:01 pm »

A lot of repair work has become priced out of existence and is only "worth it" for really expensive items, except for people with the right skills having a go on a DIY basis...

Another way to look at it is: the price of manufacturing has dropped very far below the the cost of repairing.
 

Offline Fraser

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #35 on: April 13, 2021, 05:10:08 pm »
It is interesting to watch Alex from NorthridgeFIX on YouTube. He has a very rigid view in the repairs he takes in. He charges an inspection fee, ‘no-fix’ fee or repair fee and is not scared to declare a ‘no-fix’ when an item will take too long to repair or a rabbit hole presents itself. He explains that he has masses of items awaiting repair and he just cannot run a repair business where repairs take longer than around 20 to 30 minutes. Alex will take on the repair of almost anything electronic but he understands the balance needed between how long a repair will take and how much he can reasonably charge fir such a repair. There is no shortage of demand fir his repair services and many are relatively simple socket replacements, PCB damage or relatively simple faults to track down. These are his bread and butter jobs and he has no need to dive down rabbit holes that will return the same fee as a simpler repair of which he can complete several in the same required time frame. At first this approach seems harsh to those, like me, who will happily spend hours reverse engineering PCB’s, testing voltages, displaying signals etc, but Alex is in business whereas I do such jobs as a hobby. I have. Had some absolute bargain ‘spares or repair’ buys but they were beyond economic repair in the business world. I repaired those items without the pressure of returning a profit on my time. I think to be an electronics repair centre these days you need to be a very shrewd businessman if you are to make acceptable profit to live on. The margins when overheads are considered can be slim. Sadly running such a repair operation can be one somewhat boring to the tech as we tend to like deep diving into a problem now and again and that is just not an economic proposition on anything but specialist or expensive equipment repairs where a decent fee may be charged. The FLIR One G2/G3 thermal camera dongles are an example in my World. They are just not worth the time and effort to repair if hoping to turn a profit by buying faulty and selling repaired.

NorthridgeFIX:

https://youtube.com/c/NorthridgeFix

A recent ‘no-fix’ due to a prior poor repair attempt :

https://youtu.be/ugmIzmvQSPo

Another recent ‘no-fix’ after some repair effort by Alex. As he admits, it can likely be repaired by further, deeper, investigation but he cannot go down that rabbit hole. For me personally, I hate to admit defeat and would find it hard to walk away from such a challenge. That is why I am not in the repair business though  ;D

https://youtu.be/XBAn2Ck8GeE


Fraser
« Last Edit: April 13, 2021, 05:17:25 pm by Fraser »
Cogito, ergo sum
 
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Offline jmelson

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #36 on: April 14, 2021, 01:56:48 am »
Thus, my neighbour spent £150 having his lawn mower serviced. A new one is £190. But they did polish the roller.
I recently went out to visit my son.  I thought he had learned something from me, but I guess not.  He was getting ready to dump his lawn mower and get a new one.  I took a look at it, the air filter had NEVER EVER been changed, and he was at least the 2nd owner.  It was packed with grass dust until it filled the plastic cover over the filter.  A good half inch of dust over the top of the filter!  Seems to work fine, now.

Jon
 
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Online SilverSolder

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #37 on: April 14, 2021, 02:39:32 am »
Thus, my neighbour spent £150 having his lawn mower serviced. A new one is £190. But they did polish the roller.
I recently went out to visit my son.  I thought he had learned something from me, but I guess not.  He was getting ready to dump his lawn mower and get a new one.  I took a look at it, the air filter had NEVER EVER been changed, and he was at least the 2nd owner.  It was packed with grass dust until it filled the plastic cover over the filter.  A good half inch of dust over the top of the filter!  Seems to work fine, now.

Jon

Not everyone has mechanical aptitude...  they get to pay for that, so hopefully they make up for it in other areas!  :D
 

Offline Zero999

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #38 on: April 14, 2021, 07:34:34 am »
Thus, my neighbour spent £150 having his lawn mower serviced. A new one is £190. But they did polish the roller.
He's still saving £40, so it's not a waste of money. Especially, if it's an old, very reliable model, with widely available spare. he might be better off keeping it and having it serviced every year, rather than buying a new one, which might not even last a year.
 

Offline Alti

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #39 on: April 14, 2021, 07:48:33 am »
He was getting ready to dump his lawn mower
This shows the "new is better" attitude. At least part of the problem. Why to design and sell a servicable appliance when statistically insignificant goup of users considers servicability useful? A typical user earns more than the value of the extended life of a serviced appliance. Servicing appliance or investing more in servicable appliance, or even putting effort into analysis of which appliance is cheaper in long term serviced run, is a wasteful decision then. That is a function of the value of ones time. There are those that won't bother servicing their Bentley and those who service their comb.
 
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Offline Fraser

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #40 on: April 14, 2021, 11:27:49 am »
The ‘newer is better’ idea is an interesting concept when it comes to the world of electronics. There is little doubt that computing technology and associated processors advance at a pace over time, but moving away from that particular realm things can be different.

I remember watching a program that showed ‘behind the scenes’ of a vacuum cleaner manufacturer. There was a staff incentive program where if a member of staff made a suggestion for a production line change that saved money, they got a bonus. A lady on the production line commented that the casing had more screws than were truly needed to hold it together. Each screw cost money and took time to install. The number of installed case screws was reduced and she got her bonus. This is a very simple example of what happens in Industry. The same principle is applied to much larger, more expensive items when profit margins are involved. My father worked in the Aero Engine industry and his team were regularly tasked with reviewing the BoM and reduce production costs. There was an awful lot of pressure from above to increase the profit margins but thankfully in that particular product realm, there was an over riding safety requirement that was the ace in the pack for the team that could be played if required. Aero engines must be safe !

When a product is designed, it is often over engineered and then the design team can roll back a little on the BoM cost to please management. Production cost reduction is just part of the design process. The cost reduction process can continue after initial production and also during a design review, update or refresh. The first generation product can turn out to be the better made with subsequent versions cost reduced and of lesser build quality, yet theoretically still meeting the original design criteria. The problem with the first generation design is that it may actually contain defects or vulnerabilities that are corrected in later revisions. It is a difficult choice that ‘early adopters’ of a new technology or products consider when buying such technology. Just take a look at the first generation Philips consumer grade Audio CD players .... they were built like battleships but their error correction was very much first generation and greatly improved in later product releases. That said, later models used plastic where once there had been metal and were of pretty cheap build quality with the OEM not expecting them to have a particularly long operational life. People started to change their Hi-Fi system more often due to lower cost so the operational life of the CD player became less of an issue.

I specialise in thermal camera repair and see exactly how cost reduction techniques have been applied to the technology over the years. Early models were commonly built with a metal chassis, had great temperature stability and served their owners well for many years with little to no calibration issues or failures. Modern versions of those cameras are cheaper to buy, contain highly integrated electronics packages, advanced firmware and higher performance imaging sensor arrays. To offset the clear benefits of these newer models, they are often of less rugged construction and may use cost reduced components and optics that can degrade life expectancy and performance. So which is better ? It can be a hard decision that is driven by the users needs. The original camera cost about the same as a small house and so was limited to those with significant funds. The later models are far more affordable but arguably of lesser build quality. If a camera from either era fails, they can be challenging to repair due to the lack of service data and configuration software :( The modern, cheaper camera may be more prone to failure and require expensive OEM repair, but its more modern imaging performance may be better and unit cost significantly lower. Is it better to repair an older camera technology, that is showing its age, or just going out and buying a cheaper, more modern, version that may fail in time but comes with a fresh warranty and OEM support ? That is for the end user to decide.
Sometimes the decision is not an easy one to make due to investment in a particular camera in terms of its expensive accessories. At other times it is a ‘no-brainier’. In situations like Fire Brigade thermal camera usage, the decision is often made based on camera reliability in service, age, support and replacement cost. At some point it is better to replace the cameras than to keep spending money repairing them, if support still exists.

I believe the ‘right to repair’ is what is says. I would like access to the service data and any utilities required from the OEM to repair their equipment. Those ‘tools’ and service information may come at a cost but at least they will be available. This is little different to the situation facing independent garages who use many different Scan and diagnostic tools to diagnose and repair faults on different brands of vehicle. There was a time when 3rd party scan and configuration tools were rare as OEM’s wanted their proprietary service data protected from such independent operators. Times have changed in that Industry and I would like to see the same happen across the electronics industry, but I suspect, as others have already stated, there will be the challenge of whether it is truly financially viable and sensible to repair ageing equipment rather than to buy new.

Hence why I repair thermal cameras as a hobby and not as a business  ;D
« Last Edit: April 14, 2021, 05:22:44 pm by Fraser »
Cogito, ergo sum
 
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Online SilverSolder

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #41 on: April 14, 2021, 01:43:43 pm »
[...] The later models are far more affordable but arguably of lesser build quality. [...]

This statement is broadly applicable to pretty much all products nowadays - the result of a relentless trend that has been going on since...  forever?

It seems the holy grail is to make products 100% reliable for a specific planned life span that depends on the product, after which they are expected to be 100% useless and recycled.

This obviously opens a gap for people that find ways to extend the life of these products beyond their planned obsolescence time, but such people are probably seen as a net negative to society from the perspective of manufacturers, shareholders, and politicians! 

A lot of effort goes into preventing people extending the life of products... these seem to be the rules:
  * Do not make circuit diagrams, theory of operation, or anything like that available outside the inner circle.
  * Avoid making spare parts easily/cheaply available unless these parts themselves are profitable wear items.
  * Use aggressive intellectual property law enforcement to prevent others from making the parts that you refuse to make available yourself
  * Make products difficult to repair and/or modify.  If you can pot the entire product in concrete, perfect!

On the business side:
  * Discourage customers from repairing anything, instead point to new products costing not much more than a repair
  * Get the "easy monthly payments" flowing, if you can get people to subscribe to their own internal organs you are on the right track!

 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #42 on: April 14, 2021, 04:10:43 pm »
A lot of this thread ascribes behaviors to evil that are just doing what each of us advocates doing for ourselves or what we have driven them to do. 

Examples:

1.  Manufacturers eliminating piece part availability and only providing modules.  In our personal worlds we find that older parts are no longer available and so design in newer parts.  At the module level the design remains interchangeable.

2.  Manufacturers reduce design margins or durability to reduce cost.  In our personal world we select the best price goods that meet our needs.  Yes, we are willing to spend more for quality, but usually not everywhere and for everything.  We realize that our need for some products isn't forever and we compromise.

3.  Manufacturers optimize designs to meet market needs.  This one hits me hard.  I am very tall, well over two meters.  Years ago a variety of car models were accessible to me.  But size in a car means lower fuel economy, higher emissions and more material costs.  The market demands excellent performance in these three areas and has become very good at making automobile cabins just barely big enough for their +3 sigma customers.  To their credit they have dramatically improved the accessibility to the -3 sigma customers.  But cars that serve people outside of those +/- 3 sigma limits have become as rare as hens teeth.  The designs have been well optimized.

While I am all for the right to repair, we have to recognize that it comes at a price in things we actually value.
 

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #43 on: April 15, 2021, 03:38:18 am »
While I am all for the right to repair, we have to recognize that it comes at a price in things we actually value.

The question is simple.

Are customers willing to pay extra for a product that is "easier" to repair?

We know the answer.
 

Offline AndyC_772

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #44 on: April 15, 2021, 06:51:30 am »
The problem there is lack of clear, accurate information at the point of sale. By looking at an appliance from the outside, can you tell if it's repairable?

I had to replace my washing machine a couple of years ago - catastrophic failure of the spider after 13 years, £600 for a new drum assembly. I wasn't impressed with that, but I was even less impressed with what I learned about the costs and repairability of machines from every other manufacturer. The standard is now to produce a machine with a sealed drum, small main bearings and no way to replace them when they fail.

Offline Bassman59

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #45 on: April 16, 2021, 01:55:37 am »
The problem there is lack of clear, accurate information at the point of sale. By looking at an appliance from the outside, can you tell if it's repairable?

The standard customer -- not the engineer who knows about such matters -- cannot tell if anything is repairable at all.

That customer also cannot tell whether there's some extra circuitry in some electronic gadget that makes it more resistant to failure. That extra stuff adds cost but the customer has no way to evaluate whether the cost is necessary. And when compared to a similar item that doesn't have that extra stuff, and so costs less, what choice is made?

Maybe the only way to tell is by looking at the warranty. if the manufacturer stands by it for three years, likely the design includes the extra stuff. Something with a 90-day warranty? It will cost less but you take your chances.

And, in the end, barring a compelling reason to purchase the more-expensive item, the customer generally chooses the less-expensive option.

I guess once upon a time, brand names meant something. In a lot of cases now, the old "trusty" brand names are just trademarks owned by some anonymous OEM, and labels are slapped on junk with the hope that the buyer who remembered that brand being quality will continue to trust it.

And because brand names no longer have that meaning and trust, the overseas producers no longer bother to put an American-sounding brand name on a product sold here. Americans are no longer scared of a Chinese or Chinese-sounding brand name. We can't remember them -- the brand names vanish as soon as they're established -- but that doesn't matter. Only the price matters.
 

Offline AndyC_772

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #46 on: April 16, 2021, 07:22:08 am »
That's what I ended up doing. Make a shortlist, then rank by (price / length of warranty) to get a figure for worst case cost of ownership per year. I ended up buying the cheapest machine I could find that came with a 10 year warranty.

I'd love to see domestic appliances advertised with repair information alongside the (already mandatory) energy efficiency rating chart. Things like:

- guaranteed parts availability for 3 yrs / 5 yrs / 10 yrs
- full schematics included in box / available to end user on request / available to independent service
- 100% of parts available to end user / independent service
- does / does not contain components that must be set up / programmed / commissioned using proprietary software

Offline M0HZH

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #47 on: April 16, 2021, 02:44:09 pm »
This won't change things.

Having a lab that costs £100/engineer*hour to debug & repair a £30 board in a £300 appliance that is really worth £150 on the used market is not really attractive to anyone. Not even manufacturers, that have all the required know-how and equipment don't bother with repairs anymore, they just replace and bin broken appliances returned within warranty. The only real exception is computers/mobile phones etc, where data held on the device might be of considerable value; Louis Rossman's niche is probably the most significant.

There is also the greater scope, of what we do as a civilization. Manufacturing is mostly automated and allows us humans to use our minds for greater things. Why waste a bright engineer mind on repairing some dusty, smelly TV when machines take a few minutes to make another one, much cheaper?

The real effort should be put in recycling electronics, not repairing them.
 

Offline MadScientist

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #48 on: April 16, 2021, 03:55:53 pm »
+1 :-+
EE's: We use silicon to make things  smaller!
 

Online SilverSolder

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Re: Right to Repair - UK and EU making changes to facilitate repairs :)
« Reply #49 on: April 16, 2021, 04:23:39 pm »
[...]
The real effort should be put in recycling electronics, not repairing them.

This is the direction things are going...  hand in hand with easy monthly payments, where you never really own anything, but are just paying for a service to be available to you.  If you think about a modern electronic product with a potted battery that cannot be replaced when it wears out after 2-3 years, it looks a lot like you are just buying a service for 2-3 years rather than buying something that you can keep for a long time.
 


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