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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 1:30 am 
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Hey CJohnson I am curious as to how you can base that LF is going under? The limited LF kites that I have owned are well built and great performing kites? The session looked like it was similar to the havoc so they created the envy to have a 3 strute kite. The Havoc was replaced by the NRG as it also was similar in performance to the Envy (and that makes good business sense to have a more diverse line up). The Hifi`s that I have owned where great kites and I am looking to buy another kite in that style from them. I have heard some complaints from the 2011 Hifi`s but the Nirvana`s appear to be well recieved (but than they have went back to the Hifi but name changes don`t mean a new kite). I have owned many different kites and have ones that I definitely perfer to others but I have yet to truely have a kite that I thought was a bad kite. I seen your fanfare for Switch and how you praised them for being great kites so I assume that the honeymoon was short lived. The switch guys are calling you out in previous posts and now you have moved on to bashing LF. I hope that you can see that I am only teasing you and that you have brought some needed humor into this thread. I haven`t tried Cabs yet and I am enjoying the BWS noise kites that I am using now. Heck I still have an old 07 waroo that I use as I love that kite and it still is in great shape after all the abuse that I have put into it :D ! The bar on the other hand is dying a miserable death and at some point I will need to lay it to rest :thumb: .

James
www.theglobalartist.com

Enjoy the Cabs and I hope that they bring you big smiles everytime that you get out


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 2:33 am 
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Location: New Zealand - owner of HellBoardriders.com
+1
Quote:
Liquid force does not deserve to be in the same category as North or Cabrinha in terms of material selection, build quality or design. I think Naish and Liquid Force may be similar in terms of durability but Naish has one of the longest standing reputations in wind sports and notably better designs.


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 5:36 am 
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soul19 wrote:
Hey CJohnson I am curious as to how you can base that LF is going under? The limited LF kites that I have owned are well built and great performing kites? The session looked like it was similar to the havoc so they created the envy to have a 3 strute kite. The Havoc was replaced by the NRG as it also was similar in performance to the Envy (and that makes good business sense to have a more diverse line up). The Hifi`s that I have owned where great kites and I am looking to buy another kite in that style from them. I have heard some complaints from the 2011 Hifi`s but the Nirvana`s appear to be well recieved (but than they have went back to the Hifi but name changes don`t mean a new kite). I have owned many different kites and have ones that I definitely perfer to others but I have yet to truely have a kite that I thought was a bad kite. I seen your fanfare for Switch and how you praised them for being great kites so I assume that the honeymoon was short lived. The switch guys are calling you out in previous posts and now you have moved on to bashing LF. I hope that you can see that I am only teasing you and that you have brought some needed humor into this thread. I haven`t tried Cabs yet and I am enjoying the BWS noise kites that I am using now. Heck I still have an old 07 waroo that I use as I love that kite and it still is in great shape after all the abuse that I have put into it :D ! The bar on the other hand is dying a miserable death and at some point I will need to lay it to rest :thumb: .

James
www.theglobalartist.com

Enjoy the Cabs and I hope that they bring you big smiles everytime that you get out


James,

Liquid Force does make some decent products. I have 1 of their boards right now and I've owned 4 different liquid force kites over the years including an 8m Havoc, 12m Hifi, 15m Hifi Comp, 9m Envy. I liked how the kites flew. They were good at wakestyle and the hifi's could jump decent but they lacked refinement. Lines wore fast, bar grip came off, pre 2010 safetys would not release, post 2010 safety's would accidentally release, canopy materials got soft fast and ripped easily, leading edge seams frayed, bumpers came unglued, one pump hoses popped off, zippers would break off of bags. Really everywhere I looked there was something lacking. Not to mention it seemed like I always had to fly a kite 2-3 sizes larger just to have the same power as my friends. Yes they fly good assuming you don't need to get upwind very quickly. They actually make a lot of good wakestyle kites but most people want a kite that is good at more then just one discipline.

My point is they are not on the same level as North or Cabrinha. Liquid Force is still better then a lot of the shit out there.

No offense taken btw. This forum is entirely too polite most of the time. I'd like to see it go the way of the scoopers more :) there's nothing more boring then a bunch of people sitting around agreeing with each other. Somebody has to stirr things up a bit.

The same goes for Switch btw. Not the worst not the best. if they were the best they could get away with charging more. I do think that switch quality is much better then Liquid Force though but Liquid Force probably has better durability. :) If someone wants to call that brand bashing I think they are overly sensitive. I call it being honest.


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:08 am 
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Location: www.eightsmileys.com
C Johnson wrote:
eightsmileys wrote:
We all know the Liquid Force, Cabrinha (they used to, i have not seen one of their latest kites), North maybe are the only brands that really use high end materials and a clever construction...i have repaired many kites and these are the brands i would say have very good quality and construction...and Naish although they are very heavily build = no low end! Lighter kites have better low end so it is a balance between weight vs quality.



Wow. it amazes me how little you know about kite design and build quality for someone who owned and operated a kite repair business. Heavy does not necessarily = no low end. Clearly you have never flown an old C kite.

Liquid force makes cheap kites and it looks almost like they are getting out of the business too. 2013 lineup looks like old designs with different graphics. Its pretty clear the Envy is the only kite they can actually make money on. The NRG is a desperate attempt to break into the racing scene and the Hifi X looks like they went back to the old hifi design because of how badly the Nirvana flopped. There lineup has been slowly shrinking over the years. starting with dropping the session then the Havoc. I was sad to see the havoc go. It was a great kite and ranked highly by SBC but apparently it competed too much with the Envy so they axed the Havoc for the Envy.

I have been seeing Liquid Force dropped by dealer after dealer. The only shop around here that still sells them basically only keeps them around as a board producer and to use the Envy's as school kites. You could argue the reason for dropping them could have something to do with there screwed up parent company that has been suing the industry since the beginning of time.

Liquid force does not deserve to be in the same category as North or Cabrinha in terms of material selection, build quality or design. I think Naish and Liquid Force may be similar in terms of durability but Naish has one of the longest standing reputations in wind sports and notably better designs.


Liquid Force has a very solid construction and you are mistaken big time my friend.
Heavy kites is a very important reason for kites not to have low end...i know there are other reasons.

But i am curious to know what do you mean by...you could argue the reason for dropping them could have something to do with there screwed up parent company that has been suing the industry since the beginning of time.

I might be missing something here!

To be honest different people believe in different brands but from my experience in the last 10 years that is what i have observed...which brands do you consider solid constructed?


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:24 am 
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Motion watersports is the parent company.

The news is a bit dated now and it looks like it got resolved finally but you can get the story here.

Basically motion watersports was suing every wake manufacturer including Slingshot and Ronix for patent infringement on a binding design. Liquid force and Slingshot finally settled because Liquid Force was also infringing on Slingshots Control Bar design patent.

http://www.nwkite.com/forums/t-21442.html

low end has more to to with aspect ratio, angle of attack, projected area wing profile and leading edge diameter then it does weight. Apparently you think its as simple as heavy means no low end. If that were true then I could just put weights on my kite to get more top end. Please consider how ridiculous your statement is.


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2012 7:47 am 
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Location: www.eightsmileys.com
Hey man thanks!

That is what i have observed from flying heavy constructed kites = Naish, to light constructed kites = Airush!

So my statement might be solid if you take the following example:
Take a certain kite/shape and construct it with normal ripstop/dacron
Take the same kite/shape and construct with 3 times thicker ripstop/dacron

The first kite will need less wind to fly...and then if it is designed correctly it will have better lower end than the second one! Also lighter in some occasions means faster.

Try and fly a piece of iron in any shape...and then try and fly a piece of cloth!


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry? Recession
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 2:31 am 
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Just some thoughts.

Quote:
brands -some almost local


The "made in America" BMX frame market is kinda like that. Whatever state a frame is made in; that is the local favorite and potentially the surrounding area's too.

The RV slide in camper market is like that too. They are made in the NW and Cali and are most popular in that part of the country. ( http://www.truckcampermagazine.com/buyers-guide/ )

Caution kites are popular in the area they are in? (check out their Switch like prices)

Did Best used to be the majority in Florida(and maybe NewYork?)?

SlingShot in Hood River?

Does Epic rule the OBX?

Cabrinha, Naish, Wainman in Maui?

Must be at least two handfuls of brands that don't really have global sales or representation.

It seems like in the near future, the remaining kite companies will be the ones either:

Part of a larger diversified company and as long as the kite company is still making money, or potentially even if it's losing money; it could be used as a tax write off?

Ran as a hobby or just for fun so as long as it's not costing massive money to keep going.

Best had it made till they changed that one kite model in 2010 and everyone bailed. At one time; Best kites weren't so much the best; they were just the cheapest. Then when they no longer had that one model and they were just as expensive if not more so then the rest; no reason to purchase if something better is out. Other brands are just more compelling right now.

Best grew big until the market dropped off; now they potentially have huge payroll, big office, and advertising costs. They are going to have to go back to moving huge volumes of kites at smaller margins instead of trying to make ~$1,000 profit per kite. Be like Ozone and work from home(that's the image they give at least). Best advertises like crazy; but non of that sells or persuades any experienced kiter to drop cash on a new Best kite. No current Best products are on my buy list.

A bad economy and as expensive as ever kites just don't mix. Switch will make it through; I don't know about the rest of them. They can keep raising prices to try and make payroll and keep the lights on; but that's not going to grow the market or increase sales.

The price of a bar these days is more then a kite used to cost!

http://www.bestkiteboarding.com/RP-Bar-V3

http://www.kite-line.com/kiteboardingbars/north


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 Post subject: Re: Health of Kite Industry?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:06 pm 
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C Johnson wrote:
Liquid force makes cheap kites


I've owned and demo'd a lot of kites - Ocean Rodeo, Naish, LF, Blade, North, etc... LF has some of the best construction of any kite on the market. I checked out the Envy over 3 model years and it's built well and flies well. My GF just bought her 3rd one.

I don't have any info on LF's business performance, but their kites aren't cheap or poorly built. I see a lot of them in Canada and Baja so they seem to be popular enough.

We needed some help with damaged lines [our fault] and LF sorted things out for us with no hassles at no cost.


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