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"Best" Kites are Over-Rated

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pjc
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Postby pjc » Sun Apr 04, 2004 3:56 am

So (Graeme and Shopguy) lemme get this straight. What you're saying is something like the following happened....

The crack team of Takoon scientists is working late into the night when "Eureka" ... a new type of rip-stop. It's 50% stronger ... its %75 lighter! It's super soft, and doubles as bum-wipe!

Let's patent it .. after all, patents are an excellent way to get rich, and the market for such a material must be 100X bigger then the kite market.

No ... wait ... let's lock it in the vault at Takoon central and deliver this secret formula under lock and key to the Takoon processing plant, which will insure that only Takoon can benefit from this dramatic breakthrough.

C'mon guys, being skeptical of marketing claims is not the same thing as being paranoid. There is no legal standard that needs to be met in order to put the word "proprietary" in your marketing materials. (Trust me on this one, I've seen the behind the scenes abuse of this word in the software industry).

I don't know exactly which suppliers are used for which kites, and sure, some kite companies might spend a little more to buy something a little better.

But if you're saying the next big breakthrough in "lightweight and strong" raw material came out of Takoon's R+D team, who in turn decided to lock in a vault as if it was the Coca-cola recipe instead of patent it and get rich.... I mean please, pass that pipe over here.

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Dax
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Postby Dax » Sun Apr 04, 2004 4:10 am

Graeme -
Its amazing to me that all of the kites coming out from Slingshot right now are primarily black. Wow and look at the Yargas, black. Seems like companies are being affected equally by the same material shortage. Seems like they are using the same materials. So much for that argument.

Its also funny how you would try to say that Best's strategy is neccesarily connected to volume. If anything wouldn't the distributor/retailer solution be more volume dependent. Its hard to feed shop owners that are only selling a couple kites a month.

I bet the shipping on my Best kites cost less than $30 bucks. How much do you cost Graeme?

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PAFF
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Postby PAFF » Sun Apr 04, 2004 12:03 pm

Takoon is made at the Neilpryde/Cabrinha faktory. :wink:

And Naish has less people woking than BEST....

Have you seen their office??? :oops:


You guys have almost 99% off your data, that you base you diskussion on, wrong.. :roll:

But ist fun too see you make BEST a small underdog, and Naish a giant. :roll:

North and Neilpryde are GIANT`s...

Caution Kites could be your loved underdog. :thumb:

:bye:

ronil
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Postby ronil » Sun Apr 04, 2004 12:16 pm

To PJC and others, are we doubting value of R+D?
U wrote:
Capitalism doesn't work like that. If you invent something patentable, then patent it. Otherwise, expect somebody else to copy the best parts of your business plan, and improve on the rest.
To my knowledge "Best" is voilating the ILE patent while top brands don't. Than not always patent it means u'll not be copied (cheap).
So next year they might copy One pump, or Reacon and than nobody will tend to inovate.
For short terms some consumers win, for long term the industry loose. I believe the future of BEST will be best within top brands, I.e. not outlaw.

vietkiter
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Postby vietkiter » Sun Apr 04, 2004 3:41 pm

Dax wrote:Graeme -
Its amazing to me that all of the kites coming out from Slingshot right now are primarily black. Wow and look at the Yargas, black. Seems like companies are being affected equally by the same material shortage. Seems like they are using the same materials. So much for that argument.
Graeme must be more in the know than most of us. There is a material shortage, which makes specific colors harder to acquire. Sourcing material cheaply is always important... but sourcing cheap material is not rational given potential PR issue and the big fat low hanging fruit call distribution. In general, when material is scarce, delivery is slow, but price does not creep up that much since I assume it's a temporary issue. Even if material prices spike 100%, that still does not in of itself explain Best business plan... the Big Brand kites cost more because of better material is truely a silly point used only between distributors and shopguy.

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Dax
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Postby Dax » Sun Apr 04, 2004 5:41 pm

PAFF wrote:Takoon is made at the Neilpryde/Cabrinha faktory. :wink:

And Naish has less people woking than BEST....

Have you seen their office??? :oops:


You guys have almost 99% off your data, that you base you diskussion on, wrong.. :roll:

But ist fun too see you make BEST a small underdog, and Naish a giant. :roll:

North and Neilpryde are GIANT`s...

Caution Kites could be your loved underdog. :thumb:

:bye:
Best is their own distributor, and storefront, they have to have more employees to support this. If you added up all the guys distributing and selling Naish, I'd imagine that would be a lot of people, no?

I don't know, but I believe Naish still has majority market share. As a fan of their products, I really hope they don't just whine and complain while market share is steadily taken away from them. I think right now they are handcuffed to their distributors because of their windsurfing business. If they could spin the kite stuff off on its own with a direct model, watch how the tables will turn.

X4's available at wholesale off of the Naish website... think of it!

Well it will never happen. Because sometimes old companies just can't keep up with the times. They will throw excuses at the problem instead of adapting. Sad.

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GraemeF
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Postby GraemeF » Sun Apr 04, 2004 6:24 pm

It is irritating this, sweeping statements made albeit with passion, for a belief in cheaper products from someone who has just happened along at a moment in time when there are a few ill informed clients convinced, that they've been ripped off by a system of fat cats..

Why I rise to it I do not know, I guess it must be the inherent dislike of ignorance, anyway some corrections.

PJC Off the mark chum, the way it goes with some wonder new material, once its been checked to be colorfast, U.V. stable and weft and warp tolerances such that they'll not distort over time, a kite gets built, then tested, then tested again, then another and another, and so it goes on, decent team riders are required for this, ones who really can tell the difference in performance, then there's a time delay, to make certain there's no distortion, U.V. related crap. Testing new kites can be quite dangerous, it is certainly expensive and very time consuming.

If the stuff is good, generally the brand that developed it gets it exclusive for a year, before releasing it to the rest of the brands that might purchase at that factory

The Takoon team are the residual of the original Wipika crew, who know their stuff and they've been frigging with new materials, that have yet to see the light of day for 18 months now to my knowledge.

Naish has a team who also know there stuff and spend quite some time developing stuff that sometimes, never sees the light of day but you can bet that when it does it works well enough for some custom chop shop to rip off.

Slingshot play cat and mouse with North right on there doorstep, but both brands are pushing development strategys that are building better and safer products, right now, on the stocks in China is another development that will bring more safety benefits to the market.

There is nothing new or "added value" coming out of Cabaret or Florida, therefore its only route to the market is cheap, which is the only true fact about it.

Everything else, better this, best that, is just plain bullshit, or wishfull thinking, to the point, that in some markets, advertising standards actually ban as illegal, but then the web is unregulated, so they can say what they like, and naive web nerds who just want and love to believe it go along for the ride.

Having a network of enthusiastic owners of shops, prepared to risk their own money to stock and service local consumers. Selling a seasonal product in the early development stages of a sport which makes that product obsolete very quickly and therefore a risky undertaking, is precious, takes time to build and quickly is placed under pressure from other markets with better margin products. This network Naish will quite rightly defend to the last. As will the distributors who play a vital part in the global financing of a brand, especially in periods of rapid growth.

We should all accept a certain status quo. Watch and hope if you will Bests progress, give them a full year, see how they respond to demand in season. But it really is getting very boring, watching folk make themselves look very silly, acting as evangelists of a very flawed religion.

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Dax
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Postby Dax » Sun Apr 04, 2004 7:09 pm

Graeme -
Sometimes I find its my ignorance that brings out the best in people. Anything I can do to get you to divulge more information about the real science behind all of marketing BS that you hear, I will do. Even if I look like a raving fool in the process.

Still its always been my argument that direct sales works good for kites (notice how I make no mention of harnesses, bars, lines, wetsuits, clothes, blatter replacements, or chicken loops.) All the material R&D efforts in the world have nothing to do with retail or distributor networks. That's why I said a long time ago in this thread that I wish one of the traditional companies would switch over to the direct model, then the real parameters of this argument would be more well defined.

You bring new information to the table with every post. But I think you use fact and opinion interchangably, which can be misleading to those masses you obviously have so much respect for. I'll keep calling it B.S. when I smell it. Though my perspective is limited, it is altogether different than someone in the industry. I have nothing to gain or lose... other than maybe cheaper access to quality products. Something every industry member already has.

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dt
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Postby dt » Sun Apr 04, 2004 7:24 pm

GraemeF wrote:
PJC Off the mark chum, the way it goes with some wonder new material, once its been checked to be colorfast, U.V. stable and weft and warp tolerances such that they'll not distort over time, a kite gets built, then tested, then tested again, then another and another, and so it goes on, decent team riders are required for this, ones who really can tell the difference in performance, then there's a time delay, to make certain there's no distortion, U.V. related crap. Testing new kites can be quite dangerous, it is certainly expensive and very time consuming.

If the stuff is good, generally the brand that developed it gets it exclusive for a year, before releasing it to the rest of the brands that might purchase at that factory

Having a network of enthusiastic owners of shops, prepared to risk there own money to stock and service local consumers. Selling a seasonal product in the early development stages of a sport which makes that product obsolete very quickly and therefore a risky undertaking, is precious, takes time to build and quickly is placed under pressure from other markets with better margin products. This network Naish will quite rightly defend to the last. As will the distributors who play a vital part in the global financing of a brand, especially in periods of rapid growth.

We should all accept a certain status quo, watch and hope if you will Bests progress, but it really is getting boring, watching folk make themselves look very silly, acting as evangelists of a very flawed religion.
I find some of this hard to believe. Why can't the characteristics of fabric be tested in a lab? For example, material could be put under a uv lamp, 24/7 for a month or two to test its UV stability. Their are machines that could test it durablility by tugging it this way and that a hundred times per second.

Kite testing is dangerous and expensive? I bet they just give new kite designs to their team riders and say, "Tell us what you think of that". The team riders where going to kite anyway and I am sure they are happy to try the latest greatest kites. I admit some expensive travel is occasionally involved. For example, in the Winter Ken Winnner Slingshot are probably at a windier place than the Gorge.

So, according to Graeme, kite makers are entitled to the best fabric of the previous year. That works for me. I had no problems with last years fabric or the fabric on my R1's from the year before that. The design of my R1s is outdated but the fabric is still great even though I kite almost everyday in the Summer. Give me a Dacron leading edge and a good polyester canopy and I am a happy guy.

Maybe I am a little too suspicious but I think Graeme is another Best basher with a hidden agenda. Do you own a shop Graeme?

I guess my real issue is that Graeme and other shop owners come on here and make up a bunch of BS about why we shouldn't buy best kites. You present your conjecture as fact and complain we are uninformed. Talk about selfish and unethical business practice!

Maybe shop owners shouldn't be that concerned. When Ezzy went direct, shops and other sail makers still flourished. Their prices weren't that much lower than other sails but maybe there was less margin in sails to start with.

If someone really wants to bash Best, they should put a little effort into it, not just imagination. For example, post photo's of any inferior Best chraftmanship and post next to photo's of a superior kite. Or due some destructive testing and post the results.

dt



dt

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Dax
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Postby Dax » Sun Apr 04, 2004 7:29 pm

dt wrote:Maybe I am a little too suspicious but I think Graeme is another Best basher with a hidden agenda. Do you own a shop Graeme?
He's UK Importer for Slingshot and Dakine.


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