Replica Gear: Let's Get It All Out In The Open!!

Discussion in 'Laser Class Politics' started by ALJM, Aug 2, 2009.

  1. ALJM

    ALJM New Member

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    I must take issue with Tracy Usher’s note to district secretaries in the Summer ’09 issue of The Laser Sailor. First, the easy part: Tracy characterized gear that was not Laser class legal as “counterfeit”. Webster’s defines “counterfeit” in adjective form as “made in imitation of something else with intent to deceive”. In my humble experience, I have yet to see any vendor market a piece of “replica” gear with any intent to deceive! In fact they seem to go out of their way to note that said gear is NOT class legal and is meant for practice or local fleet use only! Nor have I ever received a piece of replica gear marked as class legal. In fact, they simply don’t need to do so to have a compelling value proposition for their customers. Given the extreme cost savings from the use of replica gear and the fact that most Laser sailors don’t compete at the championship level, the replica gear sells itself as is without need to deceive! So call it “replica” or “practice” if you wish but not the “C” word as that gear and the vendor’s intent is anything but deceptive! Tracy, I would ask that you either prove an “intent to deceive” or quit using the written word to both “position” the reader and malign folks who are helping to keep Laser sailing affordable! Not to mention shooting the same folks in the face who regularly spend a significant portion of their advertising budget in support of Laser Class publications and websites!!
    Now for the REAL Issue! Why is it that a vendor like Intensity Sailing or I-Sails can make a profit on literally identical gear, particularly sails, spars and blades, at a price point that is anywhere from 50% to as little as 30% of the cost of class legal gear? If you want to rant about replica gear, then perhaps it’s time to make a true value proposition on the efficacy of the extra cost involved in purchasing class legal gear? I challenge you to spell out in detail, with the numbers laid out as well, why we should happily take as much as an almost $500US face shot when purchasing a sail from an approved vendor versus a virtually identical sail, made to class standards, by another vendor.
    I can see that there could be some legitimate challenges to overcome when trying to deal with quality control, consistency, etc… Measuring at regattas numbering in the hundreds of boats could be daunting. All valid challenges to overcome when your class numbers in the hundreds of thousands of boats! Similarly, it could simply too expensive for a small operation like Intensity or I-Sails to absorb the cost of becoming a licensed builder. However, the alternative we live with is an artificial monopoly that stifles competition and therefore artificially increases costs of “major consumable” parts (sails, spars & blades) to a level that is two to three times what it should otherwise cost. In the end, the only people getting a class legal spar in their nether regions are those same people we are trying to protect, the sailors themselves!
    So rather than ranting about how awful that spar feels back there or that all the class officers are somehow imitating a New Jersey politician and must somehow in bed with the vendors, I simply ask you to explain in clear and compelling fashion the reasoning behind this seeming conundrum so that we, the membership, can write our checks with if not a smile on our faces then at least an intact backside so that we are not faced with adding the cost of both class legal gear and a multiple cases of Depends to our sailing budgets year after year!!
    Sincerely,
    Leon Garber, Laser #168317
     
  2. Webmuppet

    Webmuppet New Member

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    'Counterfeit' is a very inflammatory term and definitely implies that a deception is intended. It would be interesting to find out if sales of aftermarket / practice / replica kit have gone up in these cash strapped times !

    Nigel
     
  3. AlanD

    AlanD Former ISAF Laser Measurer

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    The word from the European based ISAF Measurers is that the fake gear is being detected at the major European championship regattas. We've recently been issued with an extensive list of items that have been faked. It's not just sails, but spars, boards, deck fittings, and plugs etc, all appearing to be identical but without the laser logo being stamped on it.

    In some cases the owner of the gear has been supplied with inferior equipment, believing it to be authentic laser gear. One of the UK Laser websites reports the following: http://www.deadrock.co.uk/laser/measure/fakes01.htm but other examples have occurred in the past with spars and even hulls (many years ago).

    Personally, I don't care what people use to train with, but when it comes to racing, the boat should be class legal, which means no fake gear. I voluntarily donate my time at regattas, often at the expense of my own sailing to measure boats to create an even playing ground, I do not see why I should be forced now to go searching for illegal fake gear, because the competitors don't wish to do their best in making the boat class legal. Those turning up to racing with this fake gear are trying to deceive their fellow competitors and officials into believing that they are competing in laser when the presence of fake gear means that they are not sailing a legal laser, the term counterfeit is appropriate.
     
  4. gouvernail

    gouvernail Active Member

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    If and only if somebody is trying to deceive...

    Look uo and to teh right....

    Those gys make equipment for sailboats. Thye don't claim it is for use in laser races.

    Other than that?? I am off to the store to get some popcorn and beer. Reading this thread may be entertaining.
     
  5. AlanD

    AlanD Former ISAF Laser Measurer

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    Gouvernail, the people doing the deceiving are those who turn up at regattas having signed the entry form that states that they are going to abide by the rules governing the event, including the class rules. If their boat has fake gear on board, they are trying to deceive the other competitors and officials into believing they are sailing a class legal laser, when they are knowingly not sailing a class legal boat.
     
  6. gouvernail

    gouvernail Active Member

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    I fully understand your statement. I also do not have anything on any of my Lasers that is supplied by other than the builder or an authorized class legal addition or part...

    Cheaters are scumbags. If a scumbag hangs an outboard motor on his laser, that oes not make the outboard motor a counterfeit Laser rudder.



    Let's not digress from Leon's original set of complaints:
    The most cost effective production can be attained when the manufaturer knows in advance there will be a certain number of customers.
    Usually it is less expensive by the piece to manufacture more as opposed to fewer items.
    As Laser sailors, many of us believe our guarantee to allow no parts unless built by our manufacturers, should allow our manufacturers to build and supply better, less exopensive toys for our game.

    For some reason, various suppliers seem to be able to market less expensive and sometimes higher quality parts for our toys than those parts we the sailors have agreed to exclusively purchase and use in our game.

    Our system of subsidizing our builders with guaranteed consumption does not seem to be working well for us.

    We have agreed to use the "builder supplied" parts and to exclude all others and the accusation being made by the starter of this thread is the builder's quid pro quo has been delivered as profiteering.

    Leon also made it clear he is disappointed the President of the Class seems to be representing interests other than Leon.
     
  7. torrid

    torrid Just sailing

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    In my opinion, it is the sorry state of the current class sail which has precipitated the current situation. We are forced to buy and over-priced piece of crap which turns into a rag after a couple of uses. Tracy addresses this in his columm, but I don't think a new builder-supplied sail design fully addresses the situation.

    Is requiring a use of a builder-supplied sail unique to the Laser class? In every other class I have raced, you bought your sails direct from the sailmaker.
     
  8. SFBayLaser

    SFBayLaser Member

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    You will not be the first to be unhappy with the choice of terminology. I started using that word because I'm getting to be very tired of what is, unfortunately, becoming a rather standard discussion where someone shows up to a "class event" with, most commonly, a non-legal sail, starts rigging and plans to sail. Politely informing them that their boat does not conform to the Laser Class rules typically results first in surprise ("its not a Laser xyz?") which is then followed by indignation ("but it is a Laser xyz except for the stupid sticker/button/whatever!"), sometimes followed by some expletives (depending on the person) and resulting in a "what do I do know, go home?" The last thing I personally want to tell anyone is that they can't race in a regatta but, at the same time, our game has rules and, at least right now, this is how it is played.

    Perhaps I'm naive, but I just don't believe these people are overtly trying to cheat (and, in any case, how can you with, for example, a sail without a starburst or royalty button?). Rather, I think they believe its ok to use whatever the equipment is at the given event.

    I will agree that the manufacturers of non-legal parts do make an effort at a disclaimer, but I will disagree that they are going out of their way to do so. For example, let's look at the disclaimer from the most popular (in North America): down near the bottom of the page advertising their sail, in between "Sailing can be green!" and the dimensions of the sail, they say "not legal for ILCA Class sponsored regattas and events." - in all caps yes, but in black so that it doesn't really stand out. However, I don't think this statement is even technically correct as any racing under the Laser Class rules, from fleets to districts to the region to the world, requires class legal equipment. But if you read the ad for the sail you are easily led to believe that you should use this "copy" sail ("Made of a firmer Dacron than the Class aprroved sail...") in everything except ILCA sponsored regattas - which is conveniently left undefined. IMHO, both placement and terminology -imply- that it is ok to use these sails at all other times.

    So, yes, I did purposely decide to use an infammatory term in order to try to get people's attention.

    And it should also be noted that there do exist true counterfeits out there. Alan is correct, pictures were recently circulated amongst the measurers of a sail that included the starburst logo, colored panels in almost the right places (it was a Radial sail), etc. Casual inspection would have passed this sail at a regatta!

    Also, unless things like blades are purposely altered in appearance, how is a measurerer to tell the difference? The only item that would identify as a "real" blade would be the sticker, if it was still in place. In this case, I'd say that if it looks like a centerboard or rudder then its counterfeit.

    Still, if people are willing to agree there is a problem here, then I'm happy to revert to the more correct term "non-legal" equipment.

    Anyway, terminology is not really the main issue here...
     
  9. SFBayLaser

    SFBayLaser Member

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    First, I'm guided by what I believe is the philosophy of the Laser Class, which I would express as "when I go sailing in my boat I know that everyone else has a boat exactly like mine and how I finish in the races is a reflection of my ability versus the other sailors." An important corollary is that when I do go to a major regatta I don't have to show up a week ahead of time to have my boat thoroughly measured, instead I submit my rigged boat to "scrutinization" so they can see if I have figured out some clever way to tie a knot. Anyway, in the case of the Laser this is achieved by everything that can matter being supplied to us from the builder. This is the kind of racing I want to do and I'm willing to pay a little extra "tax" to achieve. If I didn't want that kind of racing there are, literally, hundreds of other classes that I can sail in.

    Interestingly, the only boats I know of that you could race for less money are those with nobody to race against. But that's wandering off topic.

    Anyway, a second point: I'm not a builder and they don't privilege even WC members with their financial sheets so I can't give you any numbers. I can only offer my understanding of their operation versus those making non-legal parts.

    Way back in the beginning of Laser time the world was different than it is now. The people who started Lasers decided on not only the design but the philosophy of what it would be. Then they put together a business model for how to make this happen. It involved the builders manufacturing the boats in factories located in places like the US, England, Japan and Australia, and buying from vendors the other parts that make up a complete boat. They then put together a dealer network, with a distribution system to get product to those dealers, and sold Lasers and all their pieces to the dealers who then sold to you. In the days before the internet this was a good model, there was almost always a dealer near you, they always had Lasers to sell to you and they always carried stock so you could pick up spare parts, etc.

    But, of course, there is a supply chain here and each stage has markup to cover overhead and add in "profit". And there is a lot of infrastructure involved.

    In the intervening time the builders did things like decide that it was a good idea to supply new boats to the world championships so that a) everyone sailed a brand new boat, b) competitors from, say, Tahiti wouldn't have to worry about the expense of shipping a boat to, for example, South Africa where there might not otherwise be charters. The result is that ILCA counts some 98 countries as wanting to participate in at least one of its world championships. If you stop to think about it, that is a pretty incredible number.

    Depending on your personal philosophy this was all either good or bad. Good: this system has resulted in nearly 200,000 boats in some 38 years. Bad: this system has resulted in less than 200,000 boats in almost four decades.

    Whatever. We live in the new millennium and we all know a) everything made in China is better, er, cheaper, b) we have the internet, c) we have FedEx/UPS/DHL/giant russian airplanes, d) there are a lot of entrepreneurs in the world.

    I don't think it takes much to realize that if you could eliminate a few links in the supply chain, reduce the overhead of factory, staff and "other" (e.g. event support), not have to submit to scrutiny by a class technical officer, etc., sell direct over the internet then you could sell a similar product for a lot less than what we pay now.

    And if you believe in the Mantra "how do you make a million dollars in the marine business? start with two million!" then you have to give credit, to some of these "copy" parts people for figuring out a way to make money selling to Laser sailors.

    On the other hand, I'm not on the bandwagon that believes the builders are getting rich at our expense. If it were true then we would not have seen the consolidation in the industry, where one builder now controls better than 80% of the market, that was Vanguard and PSE merger.

    So... having said all of this... what is the solution? Do the builders go to a system where there are no dealers, everything is made in China and we buy it from the internet?
     
  10. ALJM

    ALJM New Member

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    Alan's comments are well taken! My original issue was specific to vendors rather than competitors signing a form stating that they were sailing a boat that is class legal. Yet again, I cannot agree with the use of the term in that context. We don't call the guy passing the funny money a counterfeiter, we call the guy who MADE the funny money the counterfeiter. In the case of someone actively trying to pass their personal gear off as class legal at a regatta and signing a race form to that effect, I would call him a LIAR or CHEATER, or both if it really pisses you off.

    Bottom line is that I am NOT advocating the use of non class legal gear at sanctioned events! I am advocating some serious review of how we solve the problem of maintaining the true one design nature of the class without screwing ourselves by giving a few manufacturers a monopoly.

    Now, on to Gouv's comments! By and large he paraphrased my post accurately. However, my goal here is not to directly accuse class officers of profiting at the expense of the class members as I don't have any evidence to point to that and am not in any way leveling such a charge. I am absolutely saying that if a quid pro quo such as Gouv mentioned existed between the sail and parts makers and the class, then those manufacturers, especially North and Hyde are clearly taking advantage of the class and profiteering! Oh I'm sure they can make the excuse that their legacy cost for retiree health care is the cause or maybe they could ease up if they too got a government bail out. But....the bottom line is that if I'm the CEO at North and my guys are sourcing sails that cost me more than Intensity pays for the same sail, then it's high time I walked down the hall to purchasing and chop off a few heads!! So....you knuckleheads do the math: if they are both paying the same amount for the sail and Intensity can make a profit at under $200us, then somebody is getting f*cked and it ain't North or Hyde!! And yes Gouv, I am asking for an accounting of how all of this works from the officers of the class because if they are going to demand that my boat is class legal along with yours and everybody elses, then they should be able to tell me why I must pay the hundreds of dollars extra per item to make that happen!! Multiply each sailor's extra hundreds by the number of folks buying new sails, spars or blades and that number gets big pretty damn quick!!
     
  11. AlanD

    AlanD Former ISAF Laser Measurer

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    If you were to ask me that question, I would simply tell you that no one is forcing you to sail a laser. The class policy is only to permit authentic parts to be utilied for any racing. If you want to sail a class where anything is permitted, or where non authentic equipment is permitted, there are many other classes out there. It's your choice to sail a laser and you must accept the class policy as a result.

    Would I like to see the prices for the authentic parts lowered? Hell yes! But complaining on an internet forum is going to change the situation. Write letters to the ILCA head office and the builders.

    Most of the users on this forum are US based and the get their sails $US200 cheaper than we do in Australia, I suspect that West Coast Sailing sells as many sails to Australian customers as they do to US customers. I'm also aware that I can get a sail from the UK for a further $US50 saving (so 2/3 the price in Australia, I've recently been made aware of why we pay this price premium. You guys are lucky you get your sails and boats so cheaply. I was laughing to myself about the complaints in the thread about how relatively expensive the GRP boards, it's about the first time ever that prices in Australia have been less than the North America or Europe, we get skimmed all the time!
     
  12. SFBayLaser

    SFBayLaser Member

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    Well, as I mentioned above, the builders don't have to divulge their finances to the Laser Class (but they do get to see the Laser Class financials!).

    Here is what I believe could be comparable models (warning! pure speculation on my part):

    Class Legal:
    1) North/Hyde produce sail and sell to builders
    2) LP/PSA/PSJ buy sails from North/HYde and sell to their dealers. LP/PSA/PSJ are "bricks and mortar", in particular a factory to produce boats, employees to build the boats and run the operation, as well have other overhead associated with supporting the sport.
    3) Your dealer buys from LP/PSA/PSJ (depending on where they are in the world) and sells to you. They, most likely, also are a "bricks and mortar" (certainly a shop stocked with gear and probably a few boats to sell) operation with associated overhead.

    Copy producers
    1) Some vendor which may include known sail makers (but certainly NOT North or Hyde).
    2) A retailer buys from this vendor paying most likely around the same price as North/Hyde legal sails (well, around $7 less per sail since they don't pay a royalty to the Laser Class). They are **not** a "bricks and mortar" operation with, probably, at best a warehouse to store items to be sold over the internet and most likely no employees.

    The business people out there can insert in their favorite numbers to arrive at guesses at how this compares. But I think it at least gives a flavor of why a class legal part is going to cost more than a copy part bought over the internet.
     
  13. Deimos

    Deimos Member

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    On a technical (but important) note you are only looking at the deceit in terms of manufacturer (or seller) to purchaser. There are (or may be) other deceits going on - for example a club racer with a "knock-off" sailing a boat that is not a Laser in a Laser class fleet.

    It is actually very complex. A year (or maybe more ago) one "knock-off" supplier on this forum made the claim their sails were faster. It was in the middle of a thread discussing "knock-offs". As soon as this comment was picked-up on the supplier back-tracked and started "when I said faster I did not mean faster ...". As any claims about being faster would probably kill their market of course the had to back track (as those sailing with class legal sails in fleets allowing "knock-offs" would quickly change such a fleet policy).

    I agree with the comments by others about the costs of class sails being so high actually creating the "knock-off" market (and remember that in the UK we pay even more than in the US !!). Were class legal sails more sensibly priced and/or lasted a bit longer then things might be different and fewer people would go for imitation sails. I guess the price is actually not just about ow much you pay but cost in relation to longevity. I would happily pay twice the current PSC expensive sail price for a sail that lasted 10 times as long (as this would make it much cheaper). However, as I understand things, this is a bit of a non-discussion at the moment as the class in investigating alternatives to address the longevity issues.

    Not practical due to the way the Laser Class operated but it is interesting that in some other classes the class association controls pricing. Not sure how widespread this is but e.g. GP14 where the class places maximum costs on sails and hulls. For a sailmakers to be able to make class sails they must not exceed the class set max. end-user price. These are reviewed each year (though unsure what review processes are). Has not killed-off anything and sailmakers/builders are still happy/keen to make class legal stuff.

    As to the price of a Laser class legal sail I wonder how the price is affected by the "route to market". Somebody making and then supplying directly over the internet has lower operating costs and fewer people needing to take a cut than something being sold through retailers. Then the discussion gets more complex where you can purchase from PSC directly over the internet (e.g. in the UK). Where their price is set such that they can make a decent cut and a stocking retailer can also make a decent profit, then their online internet price becomes very very profitable as they are taking both their own cut and the retailer's cut. But they cannot discount or everybody would ignore the retailers and buy direct. Online/direct price becomes realistic but retailers no longer sell the stuff. Of course that is great for PSE as they take double profit on stuff sold direct - but one cannot blame them for maintaining a supply chain enabling chandlers to stock and supply their gear. Whilst I don't buy things like sails from local chandlers, that they sell Laser accessories is really convenient - and I would wonder how a chandler could stay in business selling an occasional block when one happens to break. Margins might be good but the actual profit amounts may not pay enough to keep the business going.

    Ian
     
  14. jeffers

    jeffers Active Member

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    There are 2 issues here I believe:

    1) Counterfeit equipment - This is about and does exist. The most recent story I have seen is about a Radial sail. It looked very convincing from the pictures I saw and almost fooled the measurer (who given how many boats they had to measure for that regatta did very well). It is a case of 'buyer beware' if not purchasing genuine parts from a reputable dealer/reseller.

    2) Replica equipment - This is made and sold as replica equipment. On ALL of the replica equipment pages I have seen every single one, without exception, has stated 'This is not genuine Laser (tm) or (r) equipment and is only quitable for training or cruising. Now the fact that some Laser parts are of a highly inflated price (the sail for one) is pushing people toward replica parts. Now here in the UK PSE are offering 'fleet discounts' which means that if a few of you get together at your club and 'bulk order' sails you do get a (sizable) discount. I have heard talk of them matching some of the more popular replica sails over here (Rooster being the main one I have seen). This goes some way to solving the issue but my problem is if they can do this for an order of 3 - 5 sails why wont they do it for 1?

    Don't get me wrong I am very pro the ethos of the Laser which is a level playing field for all. Whilst I use a 'replica' sail for my club racing I accept that when I attend an open event my boat has to be class legal and I take a 'genuine' sail.

    I also believe that class is doing a re-design of the sail but we are unlikely to see anything of it until after the 2012 Olympics, how true is this?

    Like all things in life the people who give up their time to run the class and measure (and a sterling job you all do given the contraints of the class) are the ones who bear the brunt when in reality we should all be complaining to the builders.

    Just my 2p as always.
     
  15. Tillerman

    Tillerman Member

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    There seems to be a misconception that it's OK to use so-called "replica" sails for club racing or anything that's not an "ILCA sanctioned event" (whatever that is.)

    I beg to differ.

    If you read the Racing Rules of Sailing carefully you will discover that you are required to follow Laser class rules, including using builder-supplied sails, in any race that uses the Racing Rules of Sailing.

    Here is why...

    In the RRS the rules are explicitly defined (see definition of Rule) to include "the class rules" i.e. the rules of the Laser class in this case which, of course, mandate specifically that the sail must be supplied by a "licensed builder". So if you are racing Lasers using the Racing Rules of Sailing you must also follow the Laser class rules and use a legal, official Laser sail.

    So what's to stop a club or a regatta organizer specifically allowing non-licensed sails in their racing, do I hear you ask?

    Good question...

    Well, Rule 86.1 (a) and (b) when read together clearly say that SIs can't change any of the Definitions, and so you can't change the definition of Rule to exclude the class rules.

    And Rule 87 says you can't change the class rules without getting written permission from the class.

    So there is no way that you can write SIs to say that "you must follow most of the Laser class rules but just ignore the bit about using legal sails".

    So my contention is that if you are sailing a Laser under the RRS then you must follow the class rules and use a legal sail, whatever the size of the event. This applies to club racing and local regattas just as much as to major international events.
     
  16. fracisco

    fracisco New Member

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    I'm just freaked out about the attempt to knock off that Laser Radial sail. That took some effort.
     
  17. AlanD

    AlanD Former ISAF Laser Measurer

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    Actually, your argument doesn't quitehold up. Nothing prevents a club or regatta organiser running an event in any class they wish, including a laser replica class, which can be run in conjunction with a authentic laser class fleet, around the world lasers are often raced against other single handers in an open fleet. However, if the club or regatta organiser stipulates that it's a laser only fleet, then all the replica gear is illegal. Sanctioned events are also restricted to authentic lasers.
     
  18. jeffers

    jeffers Active Member

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    Quite correct Alan. This is what a lot of UK clubs have done. You are allowed to create your own class, call it whatever you like, set whatever rules you like. You can then class race it.

    Most clubs have a Laser (tm)(r) (or whatever you wish to place after it) and a 'Laser Type' class which has exactly the same rules as the International Laser (tm)(r) with the exception that replica parts are allowed provided they are a direct replacement part for the original and offer no performance advantage. This way you can effective race them as 1 club 'fleet' because there is no performance difference between them.

    Exploiting a loophole, definitely. Is this a loophole that can be closed (IMO) no because then you restrict new classes.

    We all know 'replica' parts which are sold and clearly labelled as such are here to stay and we all have our own opinions on them.

    What I think we are ALL in agreement on is that counterfeit parts (i.e. those sold as Laser genuine parts when they are not) need to be eradicated as much as possible. That is down to us as owners to detect and (if you do not wish to be a whistleblower) leave well alone. Lets face it the parts are only made because people will buy them. If we all educate ourselves on how to spot them then we can cut down the money the counterfeiters are making and they will (hopefully) decide it is no longe profitable to do so and will go elsewhere.
     
  19. Deimos

    Deimos Member

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    (With regard to Lasers and knock-off sails) Maybe not close it officially but can be made redudant were the official sails to get to a reasonable price/longevity. The only argument for the knock-offs seems to be that they are cheaper and thus enable more people to join in. Were they to be the same price (per year - hence longevity) there would be no cost justification and thus no reason for a club to not follow class rules.

    Ian
     
  20. gouvernail

    gouvernail Active Member

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    My "translation" of Leon's post was not meant as either endorsement or criticism. it was mere ly a request that we allow the thread to continue on a course where Leon's questions could be answered.

    And, it seems to me, Tracy has done his damndest to answer or at least address each of Leon's queeries...Or so I think...

    Anyway..

    One point well put relates to the support "official" builders are forced to supply. It costs a ton of money to supply boats and support the associations. Competing price wise with those who have fewr "taxes" is difficult or impossible.

    On the other hand...and I sure don't know the answer...Is Intensity sails being given consideration as a supplier of sails for factory built boats??

    I have always maintained that a true opening of the contest to "be the monopoly sail supplier for the next four years" would be a great way to permanently fix our perceived crappy sail problem.

    Either some sailmaker would jump in and produce sails that are way better than those we have, or nobody would be willing to offer a proposal.

    Either way, the builders would benefit as would the game.

    So anyway...I somewhat share Leon's irritation that our builder supplied parts are not available for a lower cost.


    I also don't believe Vanguard was sold becuase it was struggling. I think Vanguard was sold because its owners decided thay would rather sell the business than own it.

    There are m any of us who would jump at the chance to be the Monopoly Laser builder for North America.
     

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