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Forum > Miscellaneous > Another Parachute Shop Update ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Another Parachute Shop Update
Cargo Drop Chutes going away.
Al Johnson
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Al Johnson
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Minnesota USA
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Date: 3/24/12 9:33 PM

We have run out the contract we had, and no more contracts are available. The military has filled up the supply chain and the warehouses, and now they have a two year supply on hand. So we were running three shifts to keep up, and now they have too many. Excellent planning. So there will be major layoffs, and we will be back to making only airplane parachutes. Most of the sewing machines will go to our other facilities, or be returned to lease owners.

Fortunately, the airplane business is picking up, but there will never be the amount of business for airplanes that there was for cargo chutes. Since I will be working on the airplane parachutes, I am not in immediate danger of losing my job, but it's no fun to see your coworkers get laid off, either.

Two more weeks of reduced production, and we will make our final shipment of cargo parachutes. And we were getting really good at making them, too.

------
A sewing machine is just a welder for textiles.

Franksdottir

Franksdottir  Friend of PR
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In reply to Al Johnson <<


Date: 3/24/12 9:39 PM

It does seem, with the military, that it is either feast or famine. It makes things very difficult on the suppliers.

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Barb

NM gal
NM gal
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Date: 3/24/12 10:00 PM

Wish you could convert your factory to something in demand & keep the workers working. Thanks for posting... it's interesting for the rest of us.

Learn To Sew
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In reply to NM gal <<


Date: 3/25/12 11:30 AM

Any idea what they would be? It could be interestng just to make guesses for what they could work on to keep the people employed.

Al, I hate to see them lose thier jobs too.

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Bernina 630, my much loved main machine
Bernina embroidery module
Pfaff 2036 my back up & travel machine
Babylock Molly, mechanical
Bernina 1200DA serger
Unique Sewing Cabinet 450L

tgm and Kittys
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tgm and  Kittys
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In reply to Al Johnson <<


Date: 3/25/12 7:48 PM

This is sad news. They have enough parachutes for all branches of service then ???

Too bad you could not be retooled to make other items for military such as canteen carriers with those heavy straps, ponchos etc.

At least the workers have a little bit of notice, unlike DH last job come in early all week so they can give ya the boot when everyone is caught up! ............... still very very sad! ............ OH just got the new sm too !

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Home of the adorable Baby & Mittee girl >^,,^<
Mittee birthday 10/5/2009, The Baby 11/2/2000

Oh my..here we go again, no job...Sighing allot..almost 3 months & counting ...

Home to Hello Kitty Kate, Hello Kitty Valerie, Dottie Kenmore


Al Johnson
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Al Johnson
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Minnesota USA
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Date: 3/26/12 1:23 PM

A little good news this morning to offset some gloom:
Two more people saved by their airplane parachute. Total engine failure over rough terrain at low altitude. Just the sort of scenario where you really, really want a parachute. They had one, used it in time, and are alive to tell the tale. Yay!

-- Edited on 3/26/12 1:23 PM --

------
A sewing machine is just a welder for textiles.

gabrielle

gabrielle
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In reply to Al Johnson <<


Date: 3/26/12 4:18 PM

That is good news indeed--kind of makes my day! Thanks for sharing. It must feel good knowing you're part of that.

NM gal
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Date: 3/27/12 3:07 AM

I'm totally at loss to recommend something to make. We have cut back on our spending so not buying much of anything ourselves.
If we think of something we'll let you know.

Al Johnson
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Al Johnson
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Minnesota USA
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Date: 4/12/12 9:55 AM

Today is the last day for the cargo chute, except for final inspection of the final shipment by the military rep tomorrow morning. Most everyone is laid off, the machines are silent and being torn down and packed up to ship out. Goodbyes being said all over for about a week now.

Now we get back to being a little parachute shop where we make airplane parachutes. There is a contract starting soon for a large airplane maker, so some hope. Lots of work to do to get ready for that. The very small airplane business is picking up a bit, too. If they just stay busy enough to keep me employed for 1.75 years, I'm good.

------
A sewing machine is just a welder for textiles.

beauturbo
beauturbo
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California USA
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In reply to Al Johnson <<


Date: 4/12/12 5:46 PM

What about all the state parachuting clubs? What about some hot air balloons maybe. What about those advertising things they have at events and used car sales lots where they have air blowing into them from below, and look like huge people or cartoons with arms and legs waving around? Sorry, the name for those escapes me, but maybe you could do custom ones, for some very expensive exclusive events? Also, when economy bad and tight, and tanks, extra fun things (even sports and hobbies) begin to pale as in how needed they are sometimes. But, people do need to/want to stay alive and as healthy as possible. And "durable medical equipment" is often covered under Medical, Medicare, and insurances. Possibly you could get a contract with a company producing some of that stuff. Under high medical standards that no one even wants to get from overseas and no competition there, because of quality control issues. Custom made inflatable boots and air filled mattresses for hospital or any beds to prevent bedsores and patients actually dying from that Maybe you could check into that, I think some stuff heat welded on that instead, but not all, and they need covers too. Also other medical devices and Prosthetics.

It might be less fun than sewing parachutes and require leasing some other equipment, but as long as it pays and keeps you in business until economy gets better, (or even maybe your 1.75 years left there, even if you have to help go find that for them) anything at all might be good. Good Luck!

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