Wess

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

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3 hours ago, MR.CLEAN said:

lol

Seriously though, I've seen far, far more support for ILCA's position than for LPE's.  The number of people who absolutely HATE the way LPE has done business with them over the past decade is pretty substantial.   I encountered it weekly when working for SA; nasty emails from disgruntled employees, pleas to expose some shenanigans or other,  copies of invoices for paid boats that hadn't been delivered in months and months without communication, that kind of shit. 

 

 

 

You mean LPE does business pretty much the same way as every other small boat builder I've ever dealt with? Say it ain't so...

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41 minutes ago, Steve Clark said:

If you take a leap of faith, and believe that the managers of Laser Performance aren’t idiots, but act in their financial best interest, they may have minimized their efforts in North America because the North American market is not worth the trouble and expense. They make more money in Europe, and promotion in Europe pays higher dividends than promotion in the US.  
 

.

I would have thought the US market was roughly the size of the European market.  However the truth is they sell >1000 Lasers annually in Europe but only a few hundred in the US?  I light of that, I understand LPEs actions a little bit more, as far as closing the RI facility and consolidating everything in the UK.

I still think they're a shitty company.

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43 minutes ago, WestCoast said:

Steve - I have a lot of respect for, the company you built and sold, and your contribution to the sport.
Agree with others though, you're using some pretty outdated information to draw incorrect conclusions.

 

With respect:

RS doesn't have a 'toe hold' in the US... they are the biggest importer, with all the key dealers representing their boats.
2018 Industry data I've seen shows them selling around 2x the boats in North America that LP does...
Even if it were even - I think that's a bit more of a 'toe hold' than you infer.

LP opened the door for RS for sure, but, RS came in with tighter integration with super dealers, much better supply, and running cool events.
Better, more modern products tend to do that when cities grow, traffic worsens. 
Look at the UFO, that has grown not in the old method of dealership from the past, but selling to a clientele directly that could not care less about Lasers.

 

--
I can't speak to the managers of LP, as I find them to personally be pretty nice people.
It's hard to argue with your 'EuroCentric' notion. 
But, I find it really hard to believe that giving up the NA market was a cold, calculated business decision on their part.
It seems more like death by 10,000 cuts.

Staff cuts, infrastructure cuts, marketing cuts... it just piles up.
Parts supply has been really really bad in NA for about 9 years.
If *that's* a strategy - to not sell the stuff that customers want, dealers buy, and everyone makes money on.... for 9 years...I tip my hat to them for being more advanced in business than I am.

 

I just think that, here, where we are, the horse left the stable about 6 years ago.
The metaphors used of a house on fire are a bit dark, but, I get it.

 

I don't pretend to know what is going to happen, but, the situation is far worse than you think.
 

Thanks for the information.

Could you clarify a few things.

As this discussion is about the Laser, single handed dinghy are you stating they sell 2x the number of the RS Aero's than the class legal LPE Laser in North America? 

Parts supply, do you currently have on your self ready to ship, pick up  all replacement parts for the Aero, rudders, centerboards, complete spars, deck, hull fittings etc. If not in general which parts do you currently stock?

BTW these past few years your company has been great supplying laser parts when available and all other non boat related items. Your customer service is good.

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7 hours ago, Steve Clark said:

If you take a leap of faith, and believe that the managers of Laser Performance aren’t idiots,

I don't think they are idiots I think they are incapable of managing people and running a business. Things are going downhill fast in the UK too from what I hear. The smart ones left long ago. 

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10 hours ago, lemonpepper said:

I don't think they are idiots I think they are incapable of managing people and running a business. Things are going downhill fast in the UK too from what I hear. The smart ones left long ago. 

image.thumb.png.a5309fc2e69cf634d1b5015f131d4d36.png

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17 hours ago, samc99us said:

You mean LPE does business pretty much the same way as every other small boat builder I've ever dealt with? Say it ain't so...

Not like the majority of the many other builders I've researched, visited, and reported on.  Builders have their issues, but most of them really like repeat business.

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I'm pretty sure LPE is trying to dump a bunch of the "club Lasers" onto the market, potentially at a loss, strictly to fuck with the ILCA.

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17 hours ago, VWAP said:

Thanks for the information.

Could you clarify a few things.

As this discussion is about the Laser, single handed dinghy are you stating they sell 2x the number of the RS Aero's than the class legal LPE Laser in North America? 

Parts supply, do you currently have on your self ready to ship, pick up  all replacement parts for the Aero, rudders, centerboards, complete spars, deck, hull fittings etc. If not in general which parts do you currently stock?

BTW these past few years your company has been great supplying laser parts when available and all other non boat related items. Your customer service is good.

VWAP-

First, thanks for your kind words and compliment.  Our company was founded, and exists to serve dinghy sailors.  Even as we've grown from 1 person to 15+, it's still the same general mission. I grew up sailing Lasers and it's been our bread and butter for 14 years now.

 

-> My comments on boat sales were directed to Steve's assertion that RS had a 'toe hold' in the market, so it was about total company boat sales, not Laser vs. Aero.
If I were a guessing person, I would say LP sold around 150-200 new Lasers in the USA last year.  I would say RS sold close to that in Aeros, maybe more like 125-150.

I have some access to numbers, but not unlimited, and if I did, it's not appropriate to share exact details.  My point is to establish a baseline.
 

-> Parts supply, in general on Aeros, no, but we're getting there. We just launched an entire online parts store for RS parts, so you could actually check the stock of what we have on our website (Laser parts too).  We have complete spars, foils, sails in stock, yes.  The smaller parts and pieces, no, we order from the UK for those.

In general, if you called us today and wanted the Aero 'deck organizer' we would have it in our warehouse in about 5-6 days if we didn't have it already.

If you want to compare to Laser stuff, remember, there are 40+ years of 215,000 Lasers out there.  While there are a few thousand new Aeros around.
Demand for Laser parts will exceed Aero parts for a long long time, just due to sheer numbers sold in the past decades.


-> On Laser parts, we work extremely hard to get them in stock.  We order 50x composite top sections at a time, usually 100x sails at a time, etc.
If I could only tell you how many months of work this is to get this product, I think you'd throw up in your mouth a little.  It's really really a challenge to get the basics, let alone the specific small parts - and has been for years.

Yes, we've seen an explosion of 'replica' parts, of which now we sell a decent amount. But I believe this stemmed from lack of inventory of the legal stuff, much more so than Intensity just charging nothing for everything.  Like Steve said, LP opened the door.  Now others have rushed in - and there is no going back (for LP, ILCA, whomever)

 

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6 minutes ago, torrid said:

I'm pretty sure LPE is trying to dump a bunch of the "club Lasers" onto the market, potentially at a loss, strictly to fuck with the ILCA.

Incorrect, please try again.

 

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46 minutes ago, JMP said:

https://www.apolloduck.com/boat/laser-laser-1/602143

I'm kind of interested to see if those will be sold with buttonless north/hyde sails, or with their "Training" sails.

Thanks. That is interesting. Advertised at 4250 pounds sterling which is about $5500 US.  I thought it would be less expensive.  Doesn't feel like its enough to justify not buying class legal. 

@torrid - If that is dumping at a loss as you suggest then OMG, think how low their margins are and how little money they make from selling class legal boats into the US... using Steve's or West Coast Sailing's numbers.  Like Echo I doubt that is correct.

But even at reasonable margins, given how low the US new boat sales are, Steve's views make more and more sense.

What I would be very interested to see is how many of the event supplied boats end up in US owners hands.  Would not be at all surprised if that number topped the new boat sales and if the builder is taking a bath on those then Lord help us because no way is any new builder going to come to our rescue in the US (IHMO).   Not without a big price increase anyway.

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1 hour ago, WestCoast said:

VWAP-

First, thanks for your kind words and compliment.  Our company was founded, and exists to serve dinghy sailors.  Even as we've grown from 1 person to 15+, it's still the same general mission. I grew up sailing Lasers and it's been our bread and butter for 14 years now.

 

-> My comments on boat sales were directed to Steve's assertion that RS had a 'toe hold' in the market, so it was about total company boat sales, not Laser vs. Aero.
If I were a guessing person, I would say LP sold around 150-200 new Lasers in the USA last year.  I would say RS sold close to that in Aeros, maybe more like 125-150.

I have some access to numbers, but not unlimited, and if I did, it's not appropriate to share exact details.  My point is to establish a baseline.
 

-> Parts supply, in general on Aeros, no, but we're getting there. We just launched an entire online parts store for RS parts, so you could actually check the stock of what we have on our website (Laser parts too).  We have complete spars, foils, sails in stock, yes.  The smaller parts and pieces, no, we order from the UK for those.

In general, if you called us today and wanted the Aero 'deck organizer' we would have it in our warehouse in about 5-6 days if we didn't have it already.

If you want to compare to Laser stuff, remember, there are 40+ years of 215,000 Lasers out there.  While there are a few thousand new Aeros around.
Demand for Laser parts will exceed Aero parts for a long long time, just due to sheer numbers sold in the past decades.


-> On Laser parts, we work extremely hard to get them in stock.  We order 50x composite top sections at a time, usually 100x sails at a time, etc.
If I could only tell you how many months of work this is to get this product, I think you'd throw up in your mouth a little.  It's really really a challenge to get the basics, let alone the specific small parts - and has been for years.

Yes, we've seen an explosion of 'replica' parts, of which now we sell a decent amount. But I believe this stemmed from lack of inventory of the legal stuff, much more so than Intensity just charging nothing for everything.  Like Steve said, LP opened the door.  Now others have rushed in - and there is no going back (for LP, ILCA, whomever)

 

Thanks for taking the time to answer. Follow up question. For the Aero  is there any discussion to manufacture and sell "replica" replacement parts such as the FRP replica daggerboard or the carbon  spars, etc  much like others do for the Laser at a  cost reduction to the club racer ?

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14 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

how you justify your personal attacks

Don't be so sensitive mate. Saying that I think the LP executives are incapable of managing people and running a business is not a personal attack it is a statement of fact. All the good people have left. Turnover is half what is was 10 years ago. Couldn't play nice with the owners group who provided free advertising for your highest value product so it will quickly be almost worthless. What else is there to say? 

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1 hour ago, Wess said:

If that is dumping at a loss as you suggest then OMG, think how low their margins are

Has the mfg process or material become more expensive over time? Perhaps that's part of the overall problem. A product that's gotten more expensive to build, and a shrinking customer base. Never a pretty sight.

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42 minutes ago, martin.langhoff said:

Has the mfg process or material become more expensive over time? Perhaps that's part of the overall problem. A product that's gotten more expensive to build, and a shrinking customer base. Never a pretty sight.

Over the long term, yes.  What were common and cheap when the Laser was designed are no longer either.  Time passed the mfg process and materials by.  But this was likely addressed with price increases over the history (I am GUESSING).  I don't think there has been any near term significant material cost changes.  Others would know far better than me.

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Presumably, the Laser would be a good fit for ZIM with their niche of OD dinghies+China. 

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my guess is the build doc has you building by hand layup so its way behind a modern boat and that will add to the cost not to mention materials

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3 hours ago, Sailabout said:

my guess is the build doc has you building by hand layup so its way behind a modern boat and that will add to the cost not to mention materials

A retarded monkey can spray a chopper gun into a mold. Laying down actual cloth takes a couple brain synapses. Cuts into Rastegar's bottom line.

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1 hour ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

A retarded monkey can spray a chopper gun into a mold. Laying down actual cloth takes a couple brain synapses. Cuts into Rastegar's bottom line.

Since LP Europe claim to have zero employees on their latest publicly filed financial statement the company directors must be building the boats and running the factory. Therefore you must be implying that the LP executives are retarded monkeys. Shame on you! Gouvball will be very disappointed in you for making this personal attack! 

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39 minutes ago, lemonpepper said:

Since LP Europe claim to have zero employees on their latest publicly filed financial statement 

I'm not sure where that figure comes from. I file UK company accounts and don't recall those ever including number of employees.

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2 hours ago, onepointfivethumbs said:

A retarded monkey can spray a chopper gun into a mold. Laying down actual cloth takes a couple brain synapses. Cuts into Rastegar's bottom line.

where can you spray with a chopper gun these days, very expensive factory extraction system needed, hence my point, building T model Fords wont be cheap, why would you put up with that as a customer.
IMHO is more and more items stacking up to help kill off lasers from the podium it once had.
What happens if the green lobby says buying  a laser is polluting the world versus boat X?
Where will that leave the Olympic committee if they get lobbied?

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2 hours ago, dogwatch said:

I'm not sure where that figure comes from. I file UK company accounts and don't recall those ever including number of employees.

The latest accounts (to 31 Dec 2017) do indeed claim no employees, down from 10 the year before. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/00922893/filing-history

However, LPE is controlled by Full Moon (no employees) which is in turn controlled by Sina Holdco.  SH employ around 100 people (not full time judging by wage bill).  SH is controlled by Sima Rastegar, domiciled in tax haven Monaco.  The parent company is Spring Meadow Holdings Ltd, registered in tax haven British Virgin Islands.

 

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I wish I understood that stuff better. A naive reading of that document makes it look to me as if LPE has more or less stopped operating having disposed of nearly all their fixed assets, paid off their trade debts and don't have any debtors. About the only thing left is a couple of million owed to "group undertakings". Could someone who understands this stuff take a look? Are they doing some big restructuring and shuffling stuff around in the mesh of shell companies?

 

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Is there a Laser reseller watching who'd care to tell us who they pay their invoices to?

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6 hours ago, sosoomii said:

The latest accounts (to 31 Dec 2017) do indeed claim no employees, down from 10 the year before. https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/00922893/filing-history

However, LPE is controlled by Full Moon (no employees) which is in turn controlled by Sina Holdco.  SH employ around 100 people (not full time judging by wage bill).  SH is controlled by Sima Rastegar, domiciled in tax haven Monaco.  The parent company is Spring Meadow Holdings Ltd, registered in tax haven British Virgin Islands.

 

I ventured down the rabbit hole for a while. 

LPE's SIC code is "manufacture of other plastic products",  yet all their financial reports state the business as just supply, distribution and sales of dinghies. Plus, their employees are small in number and always categorized as management, admin or sales. So, in spite of the SIC Code, the only way LPE are doing the direct manufacture is if all workers are contractors, and not employees.

In 2014, they had turnover of 7.3 Mill and cost of sales of 5 Mill. My guess is the 5 Mill is going to the actual manufacturer. As chance would have it, Sina Holdings, state their operations in all their financial info through 2016 as a holding company with two main subsidiaries - one in UK one is US - who in turn own "several" subsidiaries that manufacture as well as supply, distribution and sale of sailing dinghies, spares, accessories and services. So - no surprise - it appears to be a big shell game among Rastegar's interests - LPE, Sina and Full Moon all share the same address.

Where I get totally lost in all this is that 2015 LPE are not required to provide turnover, and the same with Sina after 2016. We do need someone with UK accounting knowledge to assist. 

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On 4/17/2019 at 2:09 PM, WestCoast said:

Steve - I have a lot of respect for, the company you built and sold, and your contribution to the sport.
Agree with others though, you're using some pretty outdated information to draw incorrect conclusions.

 

With respect:

RS doesn't have a 'toe hold' in the US... they are the biggest importer, with all the key dealers representing their boats.
2018 Industry data I've seen shows them selling around 2x the boats in North America that LP does...
Even if it were even - I think that's a bit more of a 'toe hold' than you infer.

LP opened the door for RS for sure, but, RS came in with tighter integration with super dealers, much better supply, and running cool events.
Better, more modern products tend to do that when cities grow, traffic worsens. 
Look at the UFO, that has grown not in the old method of dealership from the past, but selling to a clientele directly that could not care less about Lasers.

 

--
I can't speak to the managers of LP, as I find them to personally be pretty nice people.
It's hard to argue with your 'EuroCentric' notion. 
But, I find it really hard to believe that giving up the NA market was a cold, calculated business decision on their part.
It seems more like death by 10,000 cuts.

Staff cuts, infrastructure cuts, marketing cuts... it just piles up.
Parts supply has been really really bad in NA for about 9 years.
If *that's* a strategy - to not sell the stuff that customers want, dealers buy, and everyone makes money on.... for 9 years...I tip my hat to them for being more advanced in business than I am.

 

I just think that, here, where we are, the horse left the stable about 6 years ago.
The metaphors used of a house on fire are a bit dark, but, I get it.

 

I don't pretend to know what is going to happen, but, the situation is far worse than you think.
 

 The senior employees I know at LP are smart earnest people who I count as truly good friends.  

However any organization is deeply affected by the ethos of ownership. On the bookshelf in my office I have a book by Jack Mitchell of the Mitchells clothing retailer entitled "Hug Your Customer" .   Great businesses have a passion for their customers that comes from the top.  West Coast Sailing (the business) has succeeded because the owner has a passion for sailing and a passion for getting people on the water and a passion for pleasing the customer. The owner attracted employees and colleagues who shared that passion and the company radiates that commitment. They literally hug their customers.  

When ownership merely tolerates their customers ,  or contemplates the customer base as someone to exploit or where ownership is infuriated by their customers...then the writing is on the wall. 

I make this observation not to complement West Coast Sailing nor to criticize the hard working people at LP. I have 30+ years of funding companies and doing work outs and turnarounds and as a hard headed observation, the essential common ingredient for success is that passion for the customers.  I just dont sense that Rastegar has that ingredient. For the sake of Laser sailing, I hope I am wrong.

 

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Wondered about the relationship between Farzad and Sima Rastegar? Does anyone know; Rastegar appears to be a pretty common name among Iranians.

More importantly, were they invited to Gouv's Easter Regatta? If so, Gouv might try to talk some sense into them...

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38 minutes ago, Mambo Kings said:

 The senior employees I know at LP are smart earnest people who I count as truly good friends.

Good sentiments. But according to public filings LP have no employees so you must have friends that work for other companies. 

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2 hours ago, bill4 said:

 

I ventured down the rabbit hole for a while. 

LPE's SIC code is "manufacture of other plastic products",  yet all their financial reports state the business as just supply, distribution and sales of dinghies. Plus, their employees are small in number and always categorized as management, admin or sales. So, in spite of the SIC Code, the only way LPE are doing the direct manufacture is if all workers are contractors, and not employees.

 In 2014, they had turnover of 7.3 Mill and cost of sales of 5 Mill. My guess is the 5 Mill is going to the actual manufacturer. As chance would have it, Sina Holdings, state their operations in all their financial info through 2016 as a holding company with two main subsidiaries - one in UK one is US - who in turn own "several" subsidiaries that manufacture as well as supply, distribution and sale of sailing dinghies, spares, accessories and services. So - no surprise - it appears to be a big shell game among Rastegar's interests - LPE, Sina and Full Moon all share the same address.

Where I get totally lost in all this is that 2015 LPE are not required to provide turnover, and the same with Sina after 2016. We do need someone with UK accounting knowledge to assist. 

I had a quick look until i saw that everything was unaudited based on an exemption in the UK Companies Act.  As my general partner said to me the other day when we were going over diligence docs for the purchase of a company: "These are unaudited statements.  They'd be worth as much as toilet paper if you could print them out on something soft."

 

 

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1 hour ago, MR.CLEAN said:

... "These are unaudited statements.  They'd be worth as much as toilet paper if you could print them out on something soft."

 

 

Thanks, I will happily appropriate that line

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2 hours ago, Dex Sawash said:

To be fair, he may really love fingers

that's a smart joke

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22 minutes ago, KC375 said:

Thanks, I will happily appropriate that line

 

lawyer or accountant KC?

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neither, just an entrepreneur, jack-of-all-trades, I do a a lot of due dilligence for myself and for others...amusing how creative numbers can get (but I've still found nothing that tops Fastow's SPEs).

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41 minutes ago, KC375 said:

 jack-of-all-trades

masturbator of one! 

Nice to meetcha.  I wish I could show you all due diligence pile on my desk right now for a software company.  I'm swimming in copies of dozens of service contracts and license agreements.

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http://www.laser.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1229:advisory-statement-regarding-training-boats&catid=21:official&Itemid=250

 

Advisory Statement Regarding Training Boats PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 19 April 2019 19:09

North American Laser Class members may hear soon of Laser Performance's introduction of their Laser 'Club Edition' training boat.

LP describes it as a training boat which does not bear the World Sailing Building Plaque or a Class Approved Sail Button. This of course is fine for people to purchase and use as a training boat, but we feel it is important to clarify that these boats are not Class legal based on the Fundamental Rule within the Laser Class Rules. These boats will be ineligible to compete in any ILCA / North American Laser Class Association sanctioned event. Broadly speaking (but not exclusively) this means the boat can not be used in any regattas listed on the Laser.org website.

While the North American Laser Class Association would like all Laser racing to be conducted strictly in accordance with the Class Rules, we do not consider that we should dictate to sailing clubs throughout North America over their adoption. However, we want to make them aware that they would be open to potential protest by competing sailors in the same way as a sailor using any non-compliant gear.

Note that Laser Performance has also made the statement that the Club Edition boat is "based exactly on the same Race Laser specifications". The International Laser Class Association has no way of verifying this statement, as our Class technical officers have not been allowed to inspect the LP manufacturing facility/boats in quite some time to ensure that one-design integrity is being maintained.

This advisory statement is made solely to alert sailors wishing to compete in North American Laser Class events, that the Laser Performance 'Club Edition' is being marketed as a training boat and not as an ILCA approved racing boat.

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1 hour ago, MR.CLEAN said:

masturbator of one! 

Nice to meetcha.  I wish I could show you all due diligence pile on my desk right now for a software company.  I'm swimming in copies of dozens of service contracts and license agreements.

And you have to pay attention to all the details, or at least carefully parse which ones matter enough to sweat the details.

I nearly missed a $150 million+ gotcha – the vendor committed to transferring over a fully funded defined benefit pension plan...they forgot to mention they changed all the actuarial assumptions compared to what they used the year before...suddenly employees would start dyeing years earlier under my watch etc. etc.

Best of luck with the pile of paper...and now back to the Laser/Torch/Club Laser saga...

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5 hours ago, MR.CLEAN said:

I had a quick look until i saw that everything was unaudited based on an exemption in the UK Companies Act.  As my general partner said to me the other day when we were going over diligence docs for the purchase of a company: "These are unaudited statements.  They'd be worth as much as toilet paper if you could print them out on something soft."

 

 

The LPE financials were audited through 2014 and Sina through 2016. After that, they both just provided simple balance sheets that tell you nothing. After a bit more reading,  I see  LPE became exempt as they were suddenly classified as a “Small Entity”, which means their revenue dropped below 6.5 Mill. This amount was subsequently increased to 10 Mill in 2016, so Sina then became a small entity as well. So LPE turnover dropped from 7.3 (from last audited financials in 2014) to something less than 6.5 in 2015 and Sina dropped from 12.5 (from last audited financials in 2015) to something less than 10 in 2016.

So that is all quite boring. But we still don’t know for sure who actually manufactures the boat.

 

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1 hour ago, bill4 said:

 

So that is all quite boring. But we still don’t know for sure who actually manufactures the boat.

 

 

 

 

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totally stone age construction there

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12 minutes ago, Sailabout said:

totally stone age construction there

dugout-canoe-ancient-boat-denmark.jpg

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2 hours ago, tillerman said:

 

 

 

Yup, seen this. But who do these people work for? Unless LPE are a) misrepresenting their activities in their audited financials and b) misstating their employee count in the same document, it is not LPE...

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10 hours ago, Sailabout said:

totally stone age construction there

Not everywhere.  Club Racers training boat. Infused decks. Double bias fabric. Same weight.

 

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1 hour ago, EdS said:

Not everywhere.  Club Racers training boat. Infused decks. Double bias fabric. Same weight.

 


Apparently Brazilian Lasers are better than English Lasers.

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10 hours ago, bill4 said:

But who do these people work for? 

Maybe LP did the same as some other UK firms did a couple of years back. The government made all firms offer a work place pension scheme, which would have cost them money as they have to contribute to it as well as the employee. A way round this is to lay-off the employees & then take them back on as self-employed workers. Now the workers are all individual firms & invoice the company monthly. They now have to sort out their own tax & pension, also there is no sick or holiday pay to lay out! This is a win-win for the company. I have several friends who have had this forced on them. 

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2 hours ago, tillerman said:


Apparently Brazilian Lasers are better than English Lasers.

They are not Lasers. They are called Racer(obviously it´s a clone) .  Tested to have the same speed, weight and last longer. They race in regattas for One Person Dinghy, where English Lasers, Gammas, Torches, Racers, L99, practice parts, Intesity sails etc. are welcome. Imagine a place where a Gamma or a Laser cost US$16.000 and your money worth 4 times less, and you like to sail a one person dinghy......what can be done??

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1 hour ago, EdS said:

They are not Lasers. They are called Racer(obviously it´s a clone) .  Tested to have the same speed, weight and last longer. They race in regattas for One Person Dinghy, where English Lasers, Gammas, Torches, Racers, L99, practice parts, Intesity sails etc. are welcome. Imagine a place where a Gamma or a Laser cost US$16.000 and your money worth 4 times less, and you like to sail a one person dinghy......what can be done??

Same speed as real Lasers and all those other clone Lasers, but they last longer and are cheaper than a class legal Laser import. Sounds like these Racers should be very popular.

I imagine this kind of open class racing for "Laser-like" One Person Dinghies may become common in other countries too. 

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18 hours ago, tillerman said:

 

 

 

I don't remember who I was talking to but the rumor was that it took LP 9 man hours to build a Laser. Look at the thickness of that chopped strand mat. Ugh.

I'd love to hear from Dave Clark how the process differed back at Vanguard and how long it took to build a hull, I remember my '93 had some weave print through in some spots where I'd done some repairs.

 

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10 hours ago, Martin T said:

Maybe LP did the same as some other UK firms did a couple of years back. The government made all firms offer a work place pension scheme, which would have cost them money as they have to contribute to it as well as the employee. A way round this is to lay-off the employees & then take them back on as self-employed workers. Now the workers are all individual firms & invoice the company monthly. They now have to sort out their own tax & pension, also there is no sick or holiday pay to lay out! This is a win-win for the company. I have several friends who have had this forced on them. 

yet IR35 forced the reverse?

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 Vanguard labor standard for Laser hull was 15 hours.

SHC

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Vanguard in 2000 was about the same volume, 10-15 boats a day. 1/2 were Sunfish and Lasers, the balance was “sloops” and Optis.

15 hours meant complete through hardware, patch, QC, “putting against the wall.”

Sunfish was 12, Optimist 21.  

Labor standard times boats  produced divided by hours worked equals efficiency.  If efficiency is over 100%, give the boys a bonus and lower the labor standard next year.

Putting against the wall means placing it in finished goods inventory. We stood boats on their sterns, and often had 50-100 Laser hulls in stock. Boats sales are seasonal, and in order to level load production, we had to build inventory through Q1&2 in order to have  boats to ship in May and June.  Several million dollars of sailing dinghies in inventory can be disquieting, and makes you pay close attention to the VP sales report .......

SHC

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2 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

MFG has eight factories  around the country and builds car bodies, truck bodies, windmill blades, cafeteria trays, architectural facia, buoys, and all kinds of stuff you probably have never noticed is fiberglass. 

They built boats from before 1953 until after 1980 and never really made any money doing so. In some years, the boat business was a very expensive hobby for the owners. 

I worked there from the sixties until 1979 and I always thought we should try to do two things:

1. Get completely out of the completion and marketing part of boat building. Virtually every other product we created was some PART of someone else’s product. Examples: we build Mack Truck and Corvette boikdies but we had zero to  do with building and selling trucks or cars. 

2. Get other companies who built toys like Sunfish, Laser,  Thistle, US1, Butterfly, etc to have us build their fiberglass parts. If we could build 20 of pretty much anything made of fiberglass, we could hang the mold on our production line and cycle that mold daily. 

Everyone involved would benefit, thought me, because instead of having a tiny boatshop with ten or fifteen workers trying to figure out best practices, there would be eight factories with hundreds of workers in each one all trying to develop the most profitable ways to make good products. 

....

Years later it seems even more obvious.  Laser builders buy stuff, turn it into boats, and sell finished units.

we could be racing IDENTICAL singlehanded toys stamped out in the same sort of match Metal molds as the Sears Gamefisher hulls  and Corvette bodies. 

But.... other factors than what “I want” seem I matter

 

 

 

 

 

 

The J-boat model then. 

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13 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

MFG has eight factories  around the country and builds car bodies, truck bodies, windmill blades, cafeteria trays, architectural facia, buoys, and all kinds of stuff you probably have never noticed is fiberglass. 

They built boats from before 1953 until after 1980 and never really made any money doing so. In some years, the boat business was a very expensive hobby for the owners. 

I worked there from the sixties until 1979 and I always thought we should try to do two things:

1. Get completely out of the completion and marketing part of boat building. Virtually every other product we created was some PART of someone else’s product. Examples: we build Mack Truck and Corvette boikdies but we had zero to  do with building and selling trucks or cars. 

2. Get other companies who built toys like Sunfish, Laser,  Thistle, US1, Butterfly, etc to have us build their fiberglass parts. If we could build 20 of pretty much anything made of fiberglass, we could hang the mold on our production line and cycle that mold daily. 

Everyone involved would benefit, thought me, because instead of having a tiny boatshop with ten or fifteen workers trying to figure out best practices, there would be eight factories with hundreds of workers in each one all trying to develop the most profitable ways to make good products. 

 

Basically what happens with RS Aeros which are manufactured by MTAG Composites for RS Sailing.
 

Established in 2008, MTAG Composites specialises in the manufacture of high quality Phenolic, Epoxy/Polyester Glass Fibre and Carbon Fibre reinforced plastic mouldings with a diverse product mix for customers within the aerospace, rail and leisure industries.

Our manufacturing facilities are over 45,000 sq ft based at Coningsby, Lincolnshire UK and employ over 150 employees (most of whom have more than 20 years hands on experience in composite mouldings).

 

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9 hours ago, VWAP said:

It’s High Time to Slash the Price of the Class Laser Sails

 

https://optimist-openbic-sailing.blogspot.com/2019/04/its-high-time-to-slash-price-of-class.html

That blog seems to be viciously biased against the Laser. For example, it claims that 17 sailors DNFd both races on the first race of day 1 of the 2017 worlds. However, the scores are readily available (http://www.laserinternational.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/2017-Std-Men-Provisional-Results-D1.pdf) and they show that any such claim is quite untrue.

 

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13 hours ago, Gouvernail said:

MFG has eight factories  around the country and builds car bodies, truck bodies, windmill blades, cafeteria trays, architectural facia, buoys, and all kinds of stuff you probably have never noticed is fiberglass. 

They built boats from before 1953 until after 1980 and never really made any money doing so. In some years, the boat business was a very expensive hobby for the owners. 

I worked there from the sixties until 1979 and I always thought we should try to do two things:

1. Get completely out of the completion and marketing part of boat building. Virtually every other product we created was some PART of someone else’s product. Examples: we build Mack Truck and Corvette boikdies but we had zero to  do with building and selling trucks or cars. 

2. Get other companies who built toys like Sunfish, Laser,  Thistle, US1, Butterfly, etc to have us build their fiberglass parts. If we could build 20 of pretty much anything made of fiberglass, we could hang the mold on our production line and cycle that mold daily. 

Everyone involved would benefit, thought me, because instead of having a tiny boatshop with ten or fifteen workers trying to figure out best practices, there would be eight factories with hundreds of workers in each one all trying to develop the most profitable ways to make good products. 

....

Years later it seems even more obvious.  Laser builders buy stuff, turn it into boats, and sell finished units.

we could be racing IDENTICAL singlehanded toys stamped out in the same sort of match Metal molds as the Sears Gamefisher hulls  and Corvette bodies. 

But.... other factors than what “I want” seem I matter

 

 

 

 

 

 

US Plywood produced hot molded wooden Thistle hulls for D&M starting in 1946. US Plywood has the technology to glue wood veneers together and they had an autoclave. An old business model - interesting that RS is doing this now.

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On 4/21/2019 at 1:42 PM, Gouvernail said:

 

 If we could tool up to knock out 20,000 a year my guess is we could create Lasers for $1999 retail or less. 

This Jon Boat sells for $1485.50US at Walmart. 

Jon Boat.jpeg

How in the world are you going to make a Laser hull as cheaply, and then add a mast, boom, sail, turbo vang, rudder, centreboard, outhaul, battens, footstraps, mainsheet, decent lines etc for $500?

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1 hour ago, Curious said:

That blog seems to be viciously biased against the Laser. For example, it claims that 17 sailors DNFd both races on the first race of day 1 of the 2017 worlds. However, the scores are readily available (http://www.laserinternational.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/2017-Std-Men-Provisional-Results-D1.pdf) and they show that any such claim is quite untrue.

 

The claim in that blog about sail failures at the Laser Worlds 2017 is sourced to Mikko Brummer, and appear to arise from comments he made in The Sailors Voice group in Facebook. Mr. Brummer seems to be an equal opportunity hater as he described all the boats competing for the One Person Dinghy slot at the Olympics as looking like "toy boats compared to the Finn." Vicious indeed!

One of his comments read...
"Lasers regularly break down in 30+ kn, as well. On the first day of the Laser Worlds 2017, 19 sails failed in the same manner, the mast sticking out at to top end. Those sailors scored 2 DNFs for the day. The organizers arranged to fix all sails overnight, but the sailors got no redress and their regatta was in practice over. For at least some, it had economical implications, failing to make a top placing at the Worlds they also lost some support from their federations for 2018."

But he got the day wrong. Day 1 was sailed in relatively light winds but apparently there were some sail failures in strong winds on Day 3. 


Haven't been able to find any evidence that 19 sailors scored two DNFs on the third day (where are the full results?) but the chart at the end of the video does show two of the top 10 sailors with one DNF each. Another commenter on the thread attributed the sail issues to the introduction of the MK II sail.

Not sure if everyone will be able to read this but the thread on FB is at https://www.facebook.com/groups/7041592283/permalink/10156559690307284/

Bottom line - haters have to hate... and bloggers should check their sources!

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Found the full results;

https://sailing.laserinternational.org/regattauploads/2017/SM/2017_Std_Men_Worlds_Final_Results.htm

No evidence for the claim. Not even a blogger should be so gullible as to accept such claims without proof, when the evidence is easy to find.

Funny how some on the net are happy to accept any criticism of the Laser as the gospel truth, but don't accept praise of Lasers or criticism of their own class in the same fashion.

 

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45 minutes ago, Curious said:

Found the full results;

https://sailing.laserinternational.org/regattauploads/2017/SM/2017_Std_Men_Worlds_Final_Results.htm

No evidence for the claim. Not even a blogger should be so gullible as to accept such claims without proof, when the evidence is easy to find.

Funny how some on the net are happy to accept any criticism of the Laser as the gospel truth, but don't accept praise of Lasers or criticism of their own class in the same fashion.

 

Thanks Curious.

I believe races Q5 and Q6 were sailed on Day 3 - and, if I have counted correctly, there were a total of 19 DNS and DNF scores in those two races - with some sailors having one, and others having two such scores. So I can see where Mr Brummer might have got the "19" from, but he did get the story a bit mixed up. 

 

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32 minutes ago, Curious said:

Funny how some on the net are happy to accept any criticism of the Laser as the gospel truth, but don't accept praise of Lasers or criticism of their own class in the same fashion.

 

In the interests of balance, I would say that there are a greater amount of apologists for the laser thus by proxy for LPE, who they would have continue to operate with impunity simply to preserve the hegemony of  being able to pull a well rotten £500 boat, built a generation ago by an ostensibly different and by law of averages more responsible vendor, out of a hedge and take it sailing. 

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15 minutes ago, Daniel Holman said:

In the interests of balance, I would say that there are a greater amount of apologists for the laser thus by proxy for LPE, who they would have continue to operate with impunity simply to preserve the hegemony of  being able to pull a well rotten £500 boat, built a generation ago by an ostensibly different and by law of averages more responsible vendor, out of a hedge and take it sailing. 

It's a sturdy boat...

https://www.latitude38.com/lectronic/2019/04/19/#big-dinghy-little-crash

E

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Agreed monolithic glass is sturdy! 

Its a masterpiece of industrial design and 40y ago it would have been state of the art. 

Its a good little sailing boat in its own right. 

But it is wildly overpriced for what it is. 

I wouldn't have an issue with this if I got the impression that some of the profit was being reinvested, rather than a long killing of the golden goose. 

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1 hour ago, Daniel Holman said:

Agreed monolithic glass is sturdy! 

Its a masterpiece of industrial design and 40y ago it would have been state of the art. 

Its a good little sailing boat in its own right. 

But it is wildly overpriced for what it is. 

I wouldn't have an issue with this if I got the impression that some of the profit was being reinvested, rather than a long killing of the golden goose. 

Profit? There isn't much at the LPE level - the last year they reported full, audited financials was 2014 when their margin was 85,000 quid. But, historically, their cost of sales has been very significant. It still looks to me like LPE is paying another family member (like Sina Holdings) to build the boats. If there is fat in the retail price, it is being realized there. But if that's the case, then the Aussie and Japanese guys must be making out like bandits! 

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Im no expert at corporate finance but of course there won’t be profit at lpe level, plus their cost of sales should be high if they are reinvesting in the sport of laser sailing, else they are doing something wrong, ie it’s one of the easiest sales with large essentially captive volumes in a fairly elastic market. I use the term market in the loosest possible sense. 

If the ILCA are happy with psa and lpj ie they are considered supportive of laser sailing, and the punters are happy (relatively speaking ) with the quality and service etc then I’m happy for them to be making out like bandits. 

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1 hour ago, bill4 said:

Profit? There isn't much at the LPE level - 

I don't suppose that means anything much. The profits will appear in the mesh of shell companies wherever suits the owners best. For instance a common trick (I have no idea whether its the case here) is for the company that nominally owns the IP to be paid a huge royalty - in this case that would be the trademark owner.

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4 hours ago, Daniel Holman said:

In the interests of balance, I would say that there are a greater amount of apologists for the laser thus by proxy for LPE, who they would have continue to operate with impunity simply to preserve the hegemony of  being able to pull a well rotten £500 boat, built a generation ago by an ostensibly different and by law of averages more responsible vendor, out of a hedge and take it sailing. 

And 45578 keeps on going like the Energizer Bunny of dinghies.  Class legal with the full rig.  Generic with the radial.  It was $500 US, probably a bit over £500 with the generic radial bottom section and sail.  

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12 minutes ago, Gouvernail said:

I am only certain about one thing:

my guess is not 100% accurate 

But somehow typing all this made you feel better. Not sure what you think this has accomplished other than to waste your time and our time for reading it.

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5 hours ago, Daniel Holman said:

Agreed monolithic glass is sturdy! 

Its a masterpiece of industrial design and 40y ago it would have been state of the art. 

Its a good little sailing boat in its own right. 

But it is wildly overpriced for what it is. 

I wouldn't have an issue with this if I got the impression that some of the profit was being reinvested, rather than a long killing of the golden goose. 

I completely agree with that, Dan.

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6 hours ago, Daniel Holman said:

Agreed monolithic glass is sturdy! 

Its a masterpiece of industrial design and 40y ago it would have been state of the art. 

Its a good little sailing boat in its own right. 

But it is wildly overpriced for what it is. 

I wouldn't have an issue with this if I got the impression that some of the profit was being reinvested, rather than a long killing of the golden goose. 

It’s this type of stupid, loudmouth thinking that ruins threads like this.

So Dan, what is the exact profit you would decree a sailboat builder get to make?
Do you want to write it down here and then tell every builder what is reasonable, and what is not?
Maybe everyone should ask you how to do everything, because you seem to know exactly how to do it.
Imagine you are running a small sailboat manufacturing business already and would just open up your books to show everyone how it’s done?

 

I hate LP was much as the next sailor, but this sort of uneducated, stupid nonsense just pollutes the internet and sucks out the oxygen in what could be an interesting conversation.

Things cost what they cost, this isn’t communism.
You’re probably the same guy at boat shows who goes ‘where are the fleets?’ and then walks off the stand after finding out there aren’t 75 boats racing two blocks from his house, on his preferred night of the week, with free equipment provided by the manufacturer ‘in the name of growing the sport’

Thanks for sharing your inane opinions on the matter.  We’re all dumber for having heard it.

If Lasers were free, you’d still find something to bitch about, so please just stop bitching publicly.  It’s just annoying for everyone who isn’t quite as smart as you.
 

 

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33 minutes ago, BlatantEcho said:


You’re probably the same guy at boat shows who goes ‘where are the fleets?’ and then walks off the stand after finding out there aren’t 75 boats racing two blocks from his house, on his preferred night of the week, with free equipment provided by the manufacturer ‘in the name of growing the sport’

 

Not exactly...
 

 

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1 hour ago, BlatantEcho said:

 

It’s this type of stupid, loudmouth thinking that ruins threads like this.

...

Thanks for sharing your inane opinions on the matter.  We’re all dumber for having heard it.
 

 

Your sister eat your Easter eggs or something?

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1 hour ago, BlatantEcho said:

 

It’s this type of stupid, loudmouth thinking that ruins threads like this.

So Dan, what is the exact profit you would decree a sailboat builder get to make?
Do you want to write it down here and then tell every builder what is reasonable, and what is not?
Maybe everyone should ask you how to do everything, because you seem to know exactly how to do it.
Imagine you are running a small sailboat manufacturing business already and would just open up your books to show everyone how it’s done?

 

I hate LP was much as the next sailor, but this sort of uneducated, stupid nonsense just pollutes the internet and sucks out the oxygen in what could be an interesting conversation.

Things cost what they cost, this isn’t communism.
You’re probably the same guy at boat shows who goes ‘where are the fleets?’ and then walks off the stand after finding out there aren’t 75 boats racing two blocks from his house, on his preferred night of the week, with free equipment provided by the manufacturer ‘in the name of growing the sport’

Thanks for sharing your inane opinions on the matter.  We’re all dumber for having heard it.

If Lasers were free, you’d still find something to bitch about, so please just stop bitching publicly.  It’s just annoying for everyone who isn’t quite as smart as you.
 

 

You go know he designs dinghys  for a living as well as being one hell of a sailor don’t you ? So he has more than a little idea of how much it costs to build a dinghy .

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11 hours ago, Curious said:

This Jon Boat sells for $1485.50US at Walmart. 

Jon Boat.jpeg

 

That thing looks like a double handed Opti. Those would be great for our program. Perfect for a couple of newbie 8 year olds. Does Walmart ship to AU? They would cost $2085 AUD plus shipping. Looks like they would  stack in the container. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wow some ridiculous stuff about manufacturing and cost, what the builders are or not doing, who could be building them  etc,etc. Oh wait it's the internet

Someone should contact Robert Morrison's son Richard  about building Laser hulls.

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Just imagine what Bruce Kirby might have been able to do if he had of gone to university. He could of been Walmart's in-house N.A

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Looking forward to one day getting to sail a D Zero, great looking product of obviously a lot of work by creative people.

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