Wess

ILCA gives LPE the boot... seeking new Laser builder

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Good grief just go back and read Tracy’s own words on this thread (if he didn’t delete them). I pressed this point long ago and he was one of those who said poo-pooed the concern. They say one thing when they want votes and then do another once they have them. I could not care less about LPE being gone. They screwed up and walked into it. But the ILCA bullshit is absurd and they should be called on it. They made the supply situation worse. And they are taking and continue to take actions that in my opinion are contrary to the interest of grass roots and club level Laser sailing. Hidden fees, stopping club level boats. And no new builder. 

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I still wonder about the capital expenditure for even an existing boatbuilder to come online vs. the potential number of boats to be sold.  Granted I know absolutely nothing about boatbuilding or the market, other than it has been in decline for years.  Maybe the right builder can turn that around.

And regardless of who does or doesn't try, the process of making molds and starting production, getting class approval, and establishing distribution isn't going to happen in just a few months.

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12 minutes ago, Wess said:

Good grief just go back and read Tracy’s own words on this thread (if he didn’t delete them). I pressed this point long ago and he was one of those who said poo-pooed the concern. They say one thing when they want votes and then do another once they have them. I could not care less about LPE being gone. They screwed up and walked into it. But the ILCA bullshit is absurd and they should be called on it. They made the supply situation worse. And they are taking and continue to take actions that in my opinion are contrary to the interest of grass roots and club level Laser sailing. Hidden fees, stopping club level boats. And no new builder. 

You should run for office in ILCA yourself.

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33 minutes ago, torrid said:

I still wonder about the capital expenditure for even an existing boatbuilder to come online vs. the potential number of boats to be sold.  Granted I know absolutely nothing about boatbuilding or the market, other than it has been in decline for years.  Maybe the right builder can turn that around.

And regardless of who does or doesn't try, the process of making molds and starting production, getting class approval, and establishing distribution isn't going to happen in just a few months.

A lot of the smart builders, whom the class would want to attract, are having the exact same discussion.

I would be extremely surprised if any of the best builders in the USA pursue building ILCA dinghies with any vigor.
The costs are high, the class is divided, the international building community is willing to drop its drawers to paid their own wallets.

My crystal ball isn't perfect on this topic, but, if you review, I've been pretty close.

 

Many sideshow builders will come out, but, the big ones I talk (that the class would, actually want to have building their boats), are avoiding this mess for a couple years to see how things play out.

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59 minutes ago, torrid said:

I still wonder about the capital expenditure for even an existing boatbuilder to come online vs. the potential number of boats to be sold.  Granted I know absolutely nothing about boatbuilding or the market, other than it has been in decline for years.  Maybe the right builder can turn that around.

And regardless of who does or doesn't try, the process of making molds and starting production, getting class approval, and establishing distribution isn't going to happen in just a few months.

Good points.

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24 minutes ago, BlatantEcho said:

A lot of the smart builders, whom the class would want to attract, are having the exact same discussion.

I would be extremely surprised if any of the best builders in the USA pursue building ILCA dinghies with any vigor.
The costs are high, the class is divided, the international building community is willing to drop its drawers to paid their own wallets.

My crystal ball isn't perfect on this topic, but, if you review, I've been pretty close.

 

Many sideshow builders will come out, but, the big ones I talk (that the class would, actually want to have building their boats), are avoiding this mess for a couple years to see how things play out.

Yep.  The actual "market" has to be a big question for any builder and I'm sure they can get the info they need to make their decision.

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2 minutes ago, RobbieB said:

Yep.  The actual "market" has to be a big question for any builder and I'm sure they can get the info they need to make their decision.

Why do you think LPE were not servicing the North American market? They are/were in this position (have moulds, information on the market, used to have a dealer network, up until quite recently class approval, and own the trademark) and appear to have withdrawn from it. I don't know why but, given that they continued to sell boats successfully in Europe, I think I would want to before I considered investing there... not that I'm in any position to do so, even if I was interested, mind you!

Cheers,

              W.

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What would it cost for a new builder to start popping out hulls?  I'm going to venture somewhere more than $100,000 but less that $1 million.  Let's roughly say $300k to start?  And let's not forget they need to line up a supply chain to provide blades, spars, sails, etc.  A new builder could of course go to one of the existing suppliers, but given their special treatment from LP the last few years I doubt they would want to extend much credit.

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1 hour ago, WGWarburton said:

Why do you think LPE were not servicing the North American market? They are/were in this position (have moulds, information on the market, used to have a dealer network, up until quite recently class approval, and own the trademark) and appear to have withdrawn from it. I don't know why but, given that they continued to sell boats successfully in Europe, I think I would want to before I considered investing there... not that I'm in any position to do so, even if I was interested, mind you!

Cheers,

              W.

It's not just the boats.  They were not paying the sail makers to release sails to retailers.  Same with spars and other parts.

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3 hours ago, tillerman said:

You should run for office in ILCA yourself.

Did he join the Class association?

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7 hours ago, torrid said:

I still wonder about the capital expenditure for even an existing boatbuilder to come online vs. the potential number of boats to be sold.  Granted I know absolutely nothing about boatbuilding or the market, other than it has been in decline for years.  Maybe the right builder can turn that around.

And regardless of who does or doesn't try, the process of making molds and starting production, getting class approval, and establishing distribution isn't going to happen in just a few months.

But yet on these very pages when I made those same points Tracy’s answer if I recall correctly was that it would only take a few months. If I recall his prediction was that a new builder would be fully up and running and pumping out boats to match LPE capacity this year. 

The truth is instead of more builders and a better supply situation, there are fewer builders and more of a supply issue. Coming up fast on 10 months and 300 days since ILCA said it would be fixed “soon.”

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15 minutes ago, Wess said:

But yet on these very pages when I made those same points Tracy’s answer if I recall correctly was that it would only take a few months. If I recall his prediction was that a new builder would be fully up and running and pumping out boats to match LPE capacity this year. 

The truth is instead of more builders and a better supply situation, there are fewer builders and more of a supply issue. Coming up fast on 10 months and 300 days since ILCA said it would be fixed “soon.”

It's kind of sad that the volunteer class leaders have now got themselves into the position of being held responsible for managing the supply of Lasers. It wasn't always this way.

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1 hour ago, Wess said:

But yet on these very pages when I made those same points Tracy’s answer if I recall correctly was that it would only take a few months. If I recall his prediction was that a new builder would be fully up and running and pumping out boats to match LPE capacity this year. 

The truth is instead of more builders and a better supply situation, there are fewer builders and more of a supply issue. Coming up fast on 10 months and 300 days since ILCA said it would be fixed “soon.”

So he was wrong. Next.

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10 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

     Maybe someday we will be able to have a vibrant local fleet lots of nearby places to go enjoy Laser regattas.  At best, the supply of new toys and great hand me down toys  will take a decade to be completely replenished. 
 

Other than the new boats part we have all of this in D12.  At least as of this year.  We've enjoyed our 3rd year of fleet building and looking to start 2020 off strong.  You can get a very nice, District level competitive boat for $2,500.00!  I believe sailing has to be pushed at the local grass roots level.  Start with your club and then expand out.  The days of mass OD boat proliferation, (I believe) are over.  The great news for classes like the Laser is the core base of boats is already out there.  It's just a matter of getting them on the water.  New boats will naturally follow, (when available) where the strong fleets/regions are.

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20 minutes ago, RobbieB said:

Other than the new boats part we have all of this in D12.  At least as of this year.  We've enjoyed our 3rd year of fleet building and looking to start 2020 off strong.  You can get a very nice, District level competitive boat for $2,500.00!  I believe sailing has to be pushed at the local grass roots level.  Start with your club and then expand out.  The days of mass OD boat proliferation, (I believe) are over.  The great news for classes like the Laser is the core base of boats is already out there.  It's just a matter of getting them on the water.  New boats will naturally follow, (when available) where the strong fleets/regions are.

Some build fleets, some try to tear them down 

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1 hour ago, VWAP said:

Some build fleets, some try to tear them down

Although this is a Laser thread.  The local fleet of choice does NOT have to be a Laser.  OD sailing, hell even PHRF or portsmith, (as long as people have the right mindset) is fun as long as you have participation.  It does take work though.  Rome wasn't built in a day.  I'm sure it's hard to look around a club boat yard and see a lot of boats sitting and growing moss. As we get older we can also become less enthused and it's easy to get depressed with "Back in the Day" thoughts and memories.  In the end it just takes one person, (with a lot of patience) to rub the sticks together.

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3 hours ago, RobbieB said:

 "Back in the Day" thoughts and memories.  In the end it just takes one person, (with a lot of patience) to rub the sticks together.

What went on in the past is irrelevant. It take people like you who get things done with  action not a lot of words. Oh and you are nice to others which is why your area is growing not declining

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9 minutes ago, VWAP said:

What went on in the past is irrelevant. It take people like you who get things done with  action not a lot of words. Oh and you are nice to others which is why your area is growing not declining

Thanks. I think it's age.  There used to be a time 10+ years ago where'd I'd get all caught up in the SA BS and go useless rounds with people on subjects and stuff that just didn't matter.  Then after a "go round" with Surf Nazi we took it to PM's and I realized what an idiot I was being, life is too short, most of us here want the same thing, yada yada yada.  My 2nd wife has mellowed me out tremendously as well so a ton of credit has to go to her!  And NO I'm not showing anyone her boobs.

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1 hour ago, Gouvernail said:

 

Hey Fred, were you at the 1980 Midwinters in Appalling Beach?  Found this pic in an old NA Newsletter.  Recognize this guy?

CCF12112019_00000.jpg

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9 minutes ago, Gouvernail said:

I was too young then to play with the old farts. 
Anybody who was eligible then is 75 now. My guess is that fellow looks 35 to 40 so he would be 75 to 80. 
 

note: those are some big arms!! 

     Anyway... I have a pretty good collection of old Laser Newsletters of that vintage and I will go dig and look for another photo that looks like the same guy. 

You're right, had my years mixed up there. I did a couple midwinters in Apollo Beach and I think I stayed in that motel!

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13 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

Sam Small (Houston —-Seabrook Sailing Club) won the Grand Master Worlds in 1980. He still sails his Laser if the weather is right. 
 

If my math is correct he would be in his mid 90s.

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15 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

Sam Small (Houston —-Seabrook Sailing Club) won the Grand Master Worlds in 1980. He still sails his Laser if the weather is right. 
 

samsmall.jpg


Found this photo of Sam Small on a report of the 1999 Laser Midwest Masters Championship when he was 76. He was awarded a special Great Great Grandmaster trophy.

http://www.nalasermasters.org/masters1999results.htm
 

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And if they do receive a signed contract back from Laser Performance they'll need to scrutinise it very carefully to ensure its absolutely identical to the one they sent them...

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14 hours ago, tillerman said:

Yep.  Saw it.  Sounds like things are moving along fairly well!  Referring back to "due diligence" I would say the time frame is as well as could be expected.  Did anyone see that PSA is also supplying sails on the 2020 Worlds boats?  That's an excellent change.  Appears the "ILCA" class is what's going to stick too based on the sail bags. 

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4 minutes ago, torrid said:

I presume he didn't use Survey Monkey for his poll?

Ha! Who knows....? I can’t imagine that there is much support for adopting new rigs. After all, the 4.7 is very strong in Europe and picking up in North America. 

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1 hour ago, torrid said:

I presume he didn't use Survey Monkey for his poll?

That guy......

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3 hours ago, RobbieB said:

That guy......

I would love to work with “That guy” to build the 4.7 fleet in the southeast. It would be nice to get some of the Canadian sailors and the coach from this webinar down for a clinic during that long Canadian winter.

https://optimist-openbic-sailing.blogspot.com/2019/11/laser-47-all-you-need-to-know-webinar.html

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16 hours ago, Old Yeller said:

I would love to work with “That guy” to build the 4.7 fleet in the southeast. It would be nice to get some of the Canadian sailors and the coach from this webinar down for a clinic during that long Canadian winter.

https://optimist-openbic-sailing.blogspot.com/2019/11/laser-47-all-you-need-to-know-webinar.html

I'm I wrong or does it seem like he wants a dagger shoved right through the heart of the Laser Class....?  I'm referring to the blogger.

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47 minutes ago, RobbieB said:

I'm I wrong or does it seem like he wants a dagger shoved right through the heart of the Laser Class....?  I'm referring to the blogger.

Morning! I honestly do not get that impression. Not surprisingly, he writes with a European bias, but given the complexity of the situation I’m comfortable listening to different perspectives. In fact, I want to hear different perspectives, and I don’t see an aggressive sailing press asking tough questions. 

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32 minutes ago, Old Yeller said:

Morning! I honestly do not get that impression. Not surprisingly, he writes with a European bias, but given the complexity of the situation I’m comfortable listening to different perspectives. In fact, I want to hear different perspectives, and I don’t see an aggressive sailing press asking tough questions

That's very true....

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To be honest , it just sounds like press release  written by LPE 

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JFC, this is one of the biggest disasters ever.

The Australian builder has changed the name of all their products (laser 4, 6 and 7), while the entire class is officially silent on things.
EurILCA is at war with ILCA, and PSA employees are posting defacto statements in the class magazine about.... god knows what.

 

As a long-time Laser sailor (20+ years), who has supported the class while it attempted to get away from LaserPerformance.

It sounds like we've just been sold out to PSA.
 

They're just making new rigs, advertising all this stuff as class legal, and there is limited official communication from the class?
No wonder my friends talk about switching to Aeros and why more people do it. 

Who the hell wants to deal with a boat or class like this anymore?
Goddammit it's so tiresome guys.

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Just got the ILCA Laser Sailor winter issue. 

Andy Roy (Chairman of the North American region) has some more 'inside' info. LP has signed an NDA ( Non Disclosure Agreement) with the Class. But whether LP will sign the agreement presented by the Class remains to be seen. According to Andy, LP now needs to sign the FRAND documents and resolve its construction agreement breaches. To me, that sounds like  a sour apple for LP to eat.

Interestingly, and notwithstanding all the 'noise' made by EurIlCA leadership and JPK (blogger), only about 11% of the European members actually voted. For North America, this percentage was  61%, resulting in a big win (78%) for the Class proposal. 

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8 minutes ago, BlatantEcho said:

As a long-time Laser sailor (20+ years), who has supported the class while it attempted to get away from LaserPerformance.

It sounds like we've just been sold out to PSA.

You may have that backwards.

What if ILCA are simply working with WS requirements, and PSA/PSJ are simply falling in behind ILCA decisions?

What would that look like?

In time, the PSA conspiracy theory will be contradicted by the appointment of new builders and will fade away.

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11 minutes ago, BlatantEcho said:

They're just making new rigs, advertising all this stuff as class legal, and there is limited official communication from the class?

No wonder my friends talk about switching to Aeros and why more people do it. 

Who the hell wants to deal with a boat or class like this anymore?

If people are switching boats because of this onshore noise, that is a mistake. 

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7 hours ago, Old Yeller said:

 I don’t see an aggressive sailing press asking tough questions. 

Sailors and advertisers have killed off all the aggressive sailing press.  You reap what you sow.

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23 minutes ago, MR.CLEAN said:

Sailors and advertisers have killed off all the aggressive sailing press.  You reap what you sow.

I’m not familiar with that story. I can imagine the influence advertisers might have. How did the sailors play a role?

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In the realm of real news, I am actually filling out my actual application that I've actually been mailed. Not sure I actually want to do this, as the build methods for the laser are arcane as holy hell, but somebody's got to. For context, I would contend that literally anything going wrong with a sailboat is a fly in the champagne. A problem is somebody shooting bullets at you or a disease you can't cure. Happy holidays!

DRC
 

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6 hours ago, BlatantEcho said:

JFC, this is one of the biggest disasters ever.

The Australian builder has changed the name of all their products (laser 4, 6 and 7), while the entire class is officially silent on things.
EurILCA is at war with ILCA, and PSA employees are posting defacto statements in the class magazine about.... god knows what.

 

As a long-time Laser sailor (20+ years), who has supported the class while it attempted to get away from LaserPerformance.

It sounds like we've just been sold out to PSA.
 

They're just making new rigs, advertising all this stuff as class legal, and there is limited official communication from the class?
No wonder my friends talk about switching to Aeros and why more people do it. 

Who the hell wants to deal with a boat or class like this anymore?
Goddammit it's so tiresome guys.

That response is way over the top and mostly erroneous.

Whereas the C5 rig may be coming, it has not been legalized by the Class. And the other C rigs are further behind. PSA hasn't change the names either.

Now I will go off speculating, but my prediction is that the first 'official' ILCA C5 regatta (with more than 20 boats) will be two years from now in the Pacific area. Maybe three years from now in the North American region. In the meantime, there will be many regattas with close to 100 Laser/ILCA boats where I could embarrass myself.

Finally, as Bruce Hudson has already pointed out, there will be other builders at some point in time, even if LP continues in obstruction mode. In the latter context, let's bring out a toast to Dave Clark!

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48 minutes ago, Wavedancer II said:

That response is way over the top and mostly erroneous.

Whereas the C5 rig may be coming, it has not been legalized by the Class. And the other C rigs are further behind. PSA hasn't change the names either.

Now I will go off speculating, but my prediction is that the first 'official' ILCA C5 regatta (with more than 20 boats) will be two years from now in the Pacific area. Maybe three years from now in the North American region. In the meantime, there will be many regattas with close to 100 Laser/ILCA boats where I could embarrass myself.

Finally, as Bruce Hudson has already pointed out, there will be other builders at some point in time, even if LP continues in obstruction mode. In the latter context, let's bring out a toast to Dave Clark!

When Wavedancer makes a prediction I think it is worth taking seriously. So if I understand your prediction correctly, within two years the class members will have voted to approve the C5 rig for official class racing? The members would have to vote, correct? Or would a membership vote not be required?And why do you predict it will be the C rig that is approved? Isn’t there another rig being developed by LP? Anyway, that’s quite a prediction, given that there is no apparent grassroots desire to adopt a new rig.

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LP haven't been working with ILCA on the ARC rig at all, did it off their own backs with no class consultation, where in comparison the C rigs have been worked for years with the class leadership kept up to date on progress, similar to the development of the composite top section and mark II sails

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20 hours ago, Old Yeller said:

 Anyway, that’s quite a prediction, given that there is no apparent grassroots desire to adopt a new rig.

That depends who you talk to. Julian B and Takao Otani are in touch with grassroots that say otherwise - though that isn't in EU or NA.

If the 4.7 switched to the C5, that would guarantee its success, though there are some hurdles to overcome for that to happen.

---

It's not like classes based on rogue Laser rigs are without precedent. Rooster 8.1 is one example, which ran a UK National contest from 2007-2014.

image.png.953a4feede3a839d187cb7256f3245da.png

Doesn't look like the Rooster 8.1 made it. 

LP has an outside chance to 'make it' with their alternate rigs, but they will need to build a substantial amount of infrastructure, which is something that their track record indicates is a skill they have yet to possess. (A lot of the EU sales infrastructure is independent of LP). It would be interesting to know how many new rigs LP have sold.

In my view ILCA approval makes an enormous difference. Most times. The M rig never made it, and it had official support (for those who have long memories).

---

For now the focus needs to be on the Standard and the Radial: building and rebuilding fleets.

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17 minutes ago, Bruce Hudson said:

For now the focus needs to be on the Standard and the Radial: building and rebuilding fleets.

Why not include building 4.7 fleets in that sentence? Apparently the Europeans have been pushing that rig for some time, and the results of their efforts are impressive.

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12 minutes ago, Old Yeller said:

Why not include building 4.7 fleets in that sentence? Apparently the Europeans have been pushing that rig for some time, and the results of their efforts are impressive.

I agree about EU and the 4.7, it really is growing.

As a Kiwi I'm confused. There very few 4.7 boats to speak of here (8 in the 2019 National champs, 2 in the 2019 North Island champs), and the C5 rig is expensive. I suppose the real reason is that I didn't want to get into the 4.7 versus C5 discussion - but by omitting the 4.7 I did exactly that!

Beyond regions, the Standard and the Radial are solid international classes with a world following, whereas the 4.7 is still being established. When I omitted it, I was thinking more about Takao's perspectives on the C5/4.7 rather than mine. I really like his point that the C5 has a broader range of competitive weights.

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There are 79  4.7 Rigs entered in the Australian Nationals, starting in a few days. 4.7s are still popular down here.

Along with 71 Standards and 129 Radials. 

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19 minutes ago, dharma said:

There are 79  4.7 Rigs entered in the Australian Nationals, starting in a few days. 4.7s are still popular down here.

Along with 71 Standards and 129 Radials. 

Wow! That’s great. It seems like I’m always learning that the 4.7 is much more popular than I’ve been led to believe. 

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Laser Class Rules Under Assault - Radial and 4.7 Names Being Dropped
1282396147_4.7andRadiakbanned.jpg.1a148e915e3489a25a925a48ac2233cf.jpg

Another hard-hitting article from Jean-Pierre Kiekens...

https://optimist-openbic-sailing.blogspot.com/2019/12/laser-class-rules-under-assault-radial.html?fbclid=IwAR14LxyKxZB64sbvFgz6lcfwxJa1qWAfB-W3ZULvJVIt7mZwMMyscDeizfY

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On 12/27/2019 at 7:42 PM, Dave Clark said:

In the realm of real news, I am actually filling out my actual application that I've actually been mailed. Not sure I actually want to do this, as the build methods for the laser are arcane as holy hell, but somebody's got to. For context, I would contend that literally anything going wrong with a sailboat is a fly in the champagne. A problem is somebody shooting bullets at you or a disease you can't cure. Happy holidays!

DRC
 

I’d like to place an order for an American made Laser hull. 

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Hard hitting article my foot.

Just another press release from LPE  

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4 hours ago, Xeon said:

Hard hitting article my foot.

Just another press release from LPE  

Maybe. Even the devil needs a good PR person.
 

 

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8 hours ago, Old Yeller said:

I’d like to place an order for an American made Laser hull. 

Ain’t gonna happen any time soon.  Not with current ILCA leadership. All talk; no walk.

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5 hours ago, Old Yeller said:

Sir Mick really knew how to get em going

Not the best live version of Sympathy but I chose it because I was there. 

Everybody looks so frigging young - even Keith Richards.

 

 

 

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On 12/28/2019 at 10:34 PM, Bruce Hudson said:

...The M rig never made it, and it had official support (for those who have long memories)...

 

I can't believe 20,000 of these rigs were sold!

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38 minutes ago, Martin T said:

I can't believe 20,000 of these rigs were sold!

My god they were rubbish . The only good think about it at the time was our local cheat who thought he was a sailing god bought one . Turned out neither the rig nor the man were as good as they thought they were . Lol 

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2 hours ago, Martin T said:

I can't believe 20,000 of these rigs were sold!

Well, there was a real need for a smaller rig.

Too bad it was a crap design.

 

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On 12/28/2019 at 7:49 PM, Old Yeller said:

Wow! That’s great. It seems like I’m always learning that the 4.7 is much more popular than I’ve been led to believe. 

D12 is going to get them going in 2020!!!

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On 12/27/2019 at 2:09 PM, Wavedancer II said:

Just got the ILCA Laser Sailor winter issue. 

Andy Roy (Chairman of the North American region) has some more 'inside' info. LP has signed an NDA ( Non Disclosure Agreement) with the Class. But whether LP will sign the agreement presented by the Class remains to be seen. According to Andy, LP now needs to sign the FRAND documents and resolve its construction agreement breaches. To me, that sounds like  a sour apple for LP to eat.

Interestingly, and notwithstanding all the 'noise' made by EurIlCA leadership and JPK (blogger), only about 11% of the European members actually voted. For North America, this percentage was  61%, resulting in a big win (78%) for the Class proposal. 

Wow.  only 11%?  I thought Europe was all jazzed up over that deal?  Guess they didn't care one way or the other...

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8 minutes ago, RobbieB said:

Wow.  only 11%?  I thought Europe was all jazzed up over that deal?  Guess they didn't care one way or the other...

A couple of people on the EURILCA board and at least one blogger were certainly jazzed up.

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On 12/29/2019 at 5:36 AM, tillerman said:

Laser Class Rules Under Assault - Radial and 4.7 Names Being Dropped
1282396147_4.7andRadiakbanned.jpg.1a148e915e3489a25a925a48ac2233cf.jpg

Another hard-hitting article from Jean-Pierre Kiekens...

https://optimist-openbic-sailing.blogspot.com/2019/12/laser-class-rules-under-assault-radial.html?fbclid=IwAR14LxyKxZB64sbvFgz6lcfwxJa1qWAfB-W3ZULvJVIt7mZwMMyscDeizfY

 

Again, changes coming mostly from PSA!  Mate those guys have hijacked the Laser class, and everyone here is happy about it now because we're used to the rule of LaserPerformance. I bet we won't like our new masers very much in 2020. :wacko:  Name changes of all the sails, pushing people to do their C rigs on Lasers.
No consultation of the class. Just changing everything!  because they have a crack in the door from our hatred of LP.  World Sailing fell for it, and so did everyone else.
 

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For some facts:

In stock currently here:

68x Laser Standard Hyde Mk II sails
23x Laser Radial sails

We've got 3x 2020 HIN Lasers left, and will have another container of Lasers on order shortly.  (Manufacturer: LP UK)

 

--

For North American demand.... it's dismal at the moment. 
If 1200 Lasers were sold in the world in 2019, I would imagine 120-150 were sold in North America.

Any of the potential builders I talk to that have the distribution networks, staff and experience... none of them are seeing dollar signs here.
The start-up costs, the constant fighting in the class, the uncertainty over rigs, names and all that....  It's a *big* hill to climb to justify the time, money, energy and effort - with a very very uncertain ROI.

 

I won't defend LaserPerformance here a lot, they have brought a lot of this on themselves - no question.
But, the fragmented nature of multiple new rigs (complete carbon rigs with new sails, not the carbon radial lower)... name changes, sail name changes....
The Laser class hasn't made itself by being cutting edge and modern. It's been steady, inexpensive and largely unchanged.

 

What is happening now, is like watching a bad breakup. I believe too much damage has been done on both sides - it's going to be impossible for whoever comes out of this the 'victor' to have what they had 10 years ago....

Edited by WestCoast
added note about manufacturer being LaserPerformance, UK
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10 minutes ago, WestCoast said:

For some facts:

In stock currently here:

68x Laser Standard Hyde Mk II sails
23x Laser Radial sails

We've got 3x 2020 HIN Lasers left, and will have another container of Lasers on order shortly.

 

--

For North American demand.... it's dismal at the moment. 
If 1200 Lasers were sold in the world in 2019, I would imagine 120-150 were sold in North America.

Any of the potential builders I talk to that have the distribution networks, staff and experience... none of them are seeing dollar signs here.
The start-up costs, the constant fighting in the class, the uncertainty over rigs, names and all that....  It's a *big* hill to climb to justify the time, money, energy and effort - with a very very uncertain ROI.

 

I won't defend LaserPerformance here a lot, they have brought a lot of this on themselves - no question.
But, the fragmented nature of multiple new rigs (complete carbon rigs with new sails, not the carbon radial lower)... name changes, sail name changes....
The Laser class hasn't made itself by being cutting edge and modern. It's been steady, inexpensive and largely unchanged.

 

What is happening now, is like watching a bad breakup. I believe too much damage has been done on both sides - it's going to be impossible for whoever comes out of this the 'victor' to have what they had 10 years ago....

Glad to hear about your sail inventory.  I bought a Hyde from you guys this time last year.  It's been the best sail I've ever had.  Are the HIN hulls PSA Japan or LPE China?

I totally agree on all the rig change crap being tossed around!

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16 hours ago, BlatantEcho said:

 

Again, changes coming mostly from PSA!  Mate those guys have hijacked the Laser class, and everyone here is happy about it now because we're used to the rule of LaserPerformance. I bet we won't like our new masers very much in 2020. :wacko:  Name changes of all the sails, pushing people to do their C rigs on Lasers.
No consultation of the class. Just changing everything!  because they have a crack in the door from our hatred of LP.  World Sailing fell for it, and so did everyone else.
 

This, exactly.  So ditch the Laser and chose Aero, OK, Waszp, Solo or anything else.  Vote with your wallet.  Make it a Pyrrhic victory for ILCA/PSA. 

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10 hours ago, VWAP said:

I promise, it's not been easy to build the stock we have here, and it runs out frequently as less and less companies stock Laser parts.

We don't have an ETA for a number of items that are on order with manufacturers, so, hopefully, as always the answer is 'shortly'.
Not ideal, but we work on it daily.

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10 hours ago, Wess said:

Make them yourself. Easy to find batten stock.

"A complete set of tapered battens for the new Laser Standard Mark II racing sail. Also referred to as the MK2 sail, The Mark II sail uses tapered battens of varying stiffness so they will best match the sail shape where they are installed.

  • Fits the Standard Mark II sail (MK2).
  • Set includes 3 tapered battens.
  • Regular Laser battens will not work with this sail, nor will these battens work with 4.7, Radial, or older (pre Mark II) standard sails."

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9 hours ago, VWAP said:

"A complete set of tapered battens for the new Laser Standard Mark II racing sail. Also referred to as the MK2 sail, The Mark II sail uses tapered battens of varying stiffness so they will best match the sail shape where they are installed.

  • Fits the Standard Mark II sail (MK2).
  • Set includes 3 tapered battens.
  • Regular Laser battens will not work with this sail, nor will these battens work with 4.7, Radial, or older (pre Mark II) standard sails."

Yea I know. I have them and the sail. And again the battens are not hard to make If you find yourself stuck and certainly at a club level nobody is going to bother you about it nor will it impact your sailing performance if you have even the most basic fabrication skills and tools.  But if you want to sit on shore and pay through the nose (not a crack at West Coast Sailing who has great gear at great prices) waiting, go ahead. I prefer to sail!

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Hi Guys, been on a enforced vacation, with my whole family in Switzerland (doing the white Christmas thing) and Berlin, currently on a 3 hrs layover in Helsinki on my way to Bangkok.   As this was something Deidre (my far better 1/2) and I had been planning for 30 years, so contributing to SA until now was not a option.

Just need to correct you all on a few points.

#1 Over 2/3rds of 29ers and 49ers are sold though a 3rd party, a dealer or a agent.  

I don't know the Laser arrangement but I would be very surprised if it was any less, my guess is it would be closer to 3/4's especially in the case of LP, less so WRT PSJ.

So the price you pay, is the price the agent, the dealer charges you, and that price is a factor of what he can buy it for, plus what he can mark-it-up and that may be above or below RRP.

The manufacture fixes a price [RRP] at which the dealers can make money, because if they can't (the dealer can't make money) they wont sell it, and the bigger the class gets the more you have to rely on dealers.   You simply can't employ enough people and manage them well enough to be effective.

I know George well, and West Coast Sailing appears to be doing the right thing WRT Lasers, as dose Paolo/Alberto at Nautivela (WRT 9ers) I am sure there are others, and people are all very happy and willing to pay a premium for that service and if you need any proof of that, how many legit laser sails are sold compared to ilegit sails??

I know the magic number for the mark-up WRT 9ers and I know that PSA pay's more and that LP paid more again.

So any person with even basic school yard maths can work out who is making the most amount of money from the sales-trail, and just as a hint, it is rarely the manufacture!

#2 I have been party to quite a few conversations which have to remain confidential, but the actions that both PSJ and PSA are taking right now WRT the supply train, because they can, are truly disruptive, and I say that as being very positive.      That will result in no "territories" they are likely to result in almost not blockages of supply and they should result in the industry being overhauled and the antiquated "exclusive" dealer network which has resulted in some cases, gouging, happening less and less.     And I need to stress, the best thing that either of them could do (personally) is gouge!     So this enlightened stance from both of them is quite extraordinary.

#3 Tracy and Eric (and Andy, Takao, Chris, and all the members of ILCA) have once chance of getting this right, so you need to cut them a bit of slack.     Getting it right also means getting Chris or Takao to go start things up and timing wise, Takao will not be available this year if you want Olympics and Chris wont be available until after Easter if you want the succession of worlds that's happening in Victoria.

#4 WRT pricing of C-rigs, 2 things

              a) this is still cottage industry stuff, we don't make anywhere enough to come anywhere near the number require to get EoS [economies of scale]

              b) the price was set by the dealers (strange that) they need to make money, so what we are doing is not in their interest.

It is in-fact in the interest of every person who may buy a C-Rig at any time in the future, because the price point at which you start always has a bearing on the price in the future.

Regardless of what happens we will come out of this with approx 40,000 email names of people interested in sailing, and that is priceless, as I am sure George/Paolo will tell you.

Just so there is no confusion, I believe we are now over 3m impressions, (+5sec viewing) approx 1m reflections (I know I have the word wrong but people who went down into the doc) and 100k of click toughs, 40k of which have gone the next few steps to be asked to be kept up-dated, and we avoided Europe in all of this.

What is very interesting it the level of interest in the C6 and C8 rigs, mostly from USA and Europe.     It would appear that dad's have no problem digging into their pockets and paying a quite a few $k's for themselves but they are happy to play the waiting game for the kids.     And again, back to point #1 above, people appear to simply be un-perplexed about paying 20-25% more if they can buy off someone they know. 

We are still a very archaic sport!

#5 There are a few boats that carry rigs not designed by the designer and are international classes, the FX being a case in point.     The 49er class has chosen to amalgamation to FX into it's ICA.    They did not have to, but they did and good on them!!!    And the ILCA may or may not do that, I suspect they will, but if say the C5 gets to Int numbers as per WS schedule then it can hold a WC and it requires only the blessing of WS to do that.    

MNA's more than anyone can try and frustrate that within WS, as they have in the past, but if any class hits the numbers and applies of int status, then I can hold a worlds.

Once you have brought the boat, once it leaves the factory door, what you do with it is your business.   If a group of you get together and decide you want to play the game in this way, and you get to critical mass and have suitable doc, you to can be a int class and no existing ICA can stop you.

                               jB

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No thank you to the new rigs.  Just another unnecessary money grab.

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On 12/31/2019 at 9:19 PM, sosoomii said:

This, exactly.  So ditch the Laser and chose Aero, OK, Waszp, Solo or anything else.  Vote with your wallet.  Make it a Pyrrhic victory for ILCA/PSA. 

The Laser, with its diminished sales, still outsells most other classes.

On 12/31/2019 at 5:13 AM, WestCoast said:

What is happening now, is like watching a bad breakup. I believe too much damage has been done on both sides - it's going to be impossible for whoever comes out of this the 'victor' to have what they had 10 years ago....

I predict 2021 will be better than in 2011. There is no 'victor', just good customer service and good parts availability.

6 hours ago, JulianB said:

We are still a very archaic sport!

Agreed, particularly with respect to the development of markets and economies of scale.

Also, there has been an erosion of the one design principles with too many rig options. The class in my view would benefit from rationalizing the inventory. For example, for the Standard top section, the composite is better - so why are the alloy versions still available? What that does is creates differences that diminish the one design principle, plus reduces the sales and economies of scale potential. 

Care needs to be taken with the introduction of the C rigs. I am confident that the best results will come with the full and open  support of ILCA, and a global introduction - rather than an attempt to create growth as an alternate class.

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1 hour ago, Bruce Hudson said:

The Laser, with its diminished sales, still outsells most other classes.

Of course.  But in the UK at least it has already lost its dominant position. None of the recent moves by ILCA are likely to reverse that.

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15 minutes ago, sosoomii said:

Of course.  But in the UK at least it has already lost its dominant position. None of the recent moves by ILCA are likely to reverse that.

Agreed. For the UK, the dominant position was lost some years ago - arguably, the UK has some of the healthiest levels of participation in one design racing in the world. (I wish there were more countries like the UK). Sure the Laser is getting some poor turnouts at the contests - especially when compared with what it was like 10 years ago. There are still Lasers being raced at clubs all over the UK.

The Laser is now three classes, and the 2019 UK Nationals attendance was:

  • Laser: 37
  • Laser Radial: 53
  • Laser 4.7: 32

(Which makes a total of 122)

The RS Aero, also split across three sail plans had a total of 80 in their 2019 nationals. Many classes are split into divisions, for example the Flying Fifteen has the classics.

In fact, only three classes had a better turnout than the Laser's 122 in 2019.

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Sosoomii, what moves do you suggest the ILCA do to improve attendance in the UK?

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The ILCA needs to approach things on a global basis, which is what they are doing. 

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