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Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

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BenS
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Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby BenS » Fri Nov 13, 2020 3:00 pm

I'm looking to get back into kiteboarding after a seven year hiatus - I had lessons back in 2010 and then spent a few years enjoying the sport before I became a parent and had too little time. The kids are now at school and I have flexibility with work so I could kite during the week if there's wind. I was hoping to pick it up earlier this year, but Covid-19 came along. Previously I owned a Cabrinha Switchblade 9m and Best Kahoona 11.5m which covered the wind conditions at my local spot in the UK (15 - 25 knots) for my weight (64 kg). I'm after a kite for twintip riding, mostly flat water but keen to try some strapless wave riding in the future.

I've collated the following list of kite brands selling direct based in Europe, detailing the price in EUR for a 9 metre kite and bar setup. Of these, Ventum and Takoon look to be the better options in my limited opinion.

Decathlon
- ORAO "W" Crossover 9m (€750) + HQ4 "One Bar" (€329) = €1,079.00

Gong
- Gong Freewave 9m (€519) + Gong Bar (€299) = €768.00
Includes 15% discount for combined kite and bar orders.

Kauper XT
- Kauper Maverick 9m (€699) + Pintxo Bar (€699) = €1,098.00

KSP
- KSP Phantom 8.5m (€595) + KSP Bar (€280) = €875.00

Spleene
- Spleene QX-II 9m (€876.33) + X-Bar 52 (€424.03) = €1,217.51
Includes 19.5% discount on bar when ordered with a kite.

Storm
- Storm Vortex 9m (€750) + Storm Bar (€390) = €990.00
Includes €150 discount for combined kite and bar orders.

Takoon
- Takoon Furia V2 9m (€829) + Sweet bar (€349) = €1,178.00

Ventum Kiteboarding
- Ventum Xplore 9m (€795) + Tough V2 bar (€414) = €1,096.19
Includes €8.09 shipping and 10% discount (€120.90) for combined kite and bar orders.

The prices listed above are around €1,000 for the kite and bar setup, which compares favourably to the main kite brands. For comparison the Duotone Evo 9m (€1,439) + Trust Control bar (€538) = €1,977 which is almost double the price of a direct to consumer manufacturer. Is the additional cost worth it? Or should I find a discounted kite from one of the main brands, such as during an end of season sale or Black Friday discount? I've been looking at second hand kites for sale, but there aren't too many that are less than a few years old. I am more than happy to support the smaller kite brands and not concerned with resale value.

Any recommendations from the list above, other options to consider, or for any to avoid would be much appreciated. I imagine (and hope) the tech has improved somewhat from the 2010 era!

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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby Foil » Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:04 am

I recommend you take that list to a great shop in the UK.
Like Mark the owner at Boardworx at Whitstable and ask him to try and match it, he has ways to find top gear at discount prices, maybe last season's or just overstocks that brands want to clear, or even hardly used gear from guys who give in after a few goes and sell back to Mark, much better to have the backing and relationship of a top notch dealer with shop and top reputation for doing the right thing👍

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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby Havre » Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:18 am

Foil wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:04 am
I recommend you take that list to a great shop in the UK.
Like Mark the owner at Boardworx at Whitstable and ask him to try and match it, he has ways to find top gear at discount prices, maybe last season's or just overstocks that brands want to clear, or even hardly used gear from guys who give in after a few goes and sell back to Mark, much better to have the backing and relationship of a top notch dealer with shop and top reputation for doing the right thing👍
Why is it better?

I will never understand the distribution channels for kites. You are just adding one more layer of costs.

I would have loved it if someone like Duotone went Tesla. We would see a significant drop in prices all over.

I can't even remember the last time I physically went in to a shop to buy anything expensive. Even my car I bought without even talking to anyone on the phone. Only guy I met was the truck driver bringing it.

As for advice on which kite I don't know any of them I'm afraid. And you can get solid deals these days through retailers as well. King of watersports are currently discounting RRD heavily. As an example (not sure how many sizes etc they got left).

BenS
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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby BenS » Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:44 am

Foil wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2020 10:04 am
I recommend you take that list to a great shop in the UK
That’s a good suggestion. The closest kite shop is at Hayling Island and they also offer lessons. I was thinking about taking a refresher lesson, so could have a chat about kit at the same time.

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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby mar menor » Sat Nov 14, 2020 11:54 am

Tried the Ventum ,explore and Tough bar V2,on TT ,strapless surfboard and hydrofoil .It was a 7m and I was super impressed with it .Also build quality and value for money are great.On caveat,for foiling the 7m was fine as most 3 strut kites would work.,however I would not use a bigger size(for foiling ) as too heavy.The weight is a reflection of the bomb proof construction which is good for TT/surfboard. The 9m was great on the surfboard and 12 m (excite) good on the TT.
One thing to bear in mind is with lesser known brands they do not (generally) hold s/hand value like a 'big' brand.
Would I buy them...yes (but not for foiling) but for anything else absolutely
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Ice101
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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby Ice101 » Sat Nov 14, 2020 12:46 pm

S2as also doing really cheap bargains on ocean rodeo which is good quality and well known kit if he had any left. Nearly 50% off.
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Windigo1
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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby Windigo1 » Sat Nov 14, 2020 2:20 pm

There is nothing wrong with most of the low cost direct distribution brands but the resale value will be lower and they will be hard to sell if you don't like your kite.

Getting a new kite from the season before or a barely used one from one of the top brands will guarantee a better resale value and a proven product since they are probably very popular for a reason.

If you have the opportunity to try the kite from the low cost company and you are sure you will be keeping it a long time then go for it!

BenS
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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby BenS » Sat Nov 14, 2020 5:27 pm

Windigo1 wrote:
Sat Nov 14, 2020 2:20 pm
There is nothing wrong with most of the low cost direct distribution brands but the resale value will be lower and they will be hard to sell if you don't like your kite.
Resale value is interesting because the difference in purchase price may make up for a lower second-hand sale.

Here's an example using the Duotone Evo 9m which I could buy new for €1,400 (kite only). Assume I could later sell it second-hand at a 25% discount (€1,050) that would mean a loss of €350. Compare to a Ventum Xplore 9m which costs €795 new, if I sold it at a larger 50% discount (€397.50) then I would lose €397.50. That's roughly a €50 difference in losses between the main brand and direct to consumer. Not a significant difference. But with the cheaper kite brand I could buy a two kite quiver and bar (€1,800) for the same cost as a single kite and bar setup from a mainstream brand.

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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby mar menor » Sat Nov 14, 2020 7:14 pm

Generally the' 'hit' you will take on a new kite will be much more than 25%. Think most will not pay 1000£/euros for something 'second hand' ,even if it is like new,people would wait for later but new model. Modern kites last for ages if looked after ,most people change because they WANT to to be on the latest model not because they NEED to (myself included)
Has there been a real innovation in tube kites for the last 10 years? (apart from Aluula) I have a 2013 Ozone Catalyst and it is still in really good condition and flies great.Is my much newer Ozone Enduro that much better than it?.... in all honesty no.
Can be a problem finding second hand in great condition,bit of a risk, buying a new kite ,like the Ventum isn't.
Last edited by mar menor on Sun Nov 15, 2020 3:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Buying a kite + bar setup from a direct to consumer manufacturer in Europe

Postby tegirinenashi » Sun Nov 15, 2020 12:54 am

Superiority of "premium" brands is a myth. The direct 21st century sales model has been there for decade and a half since Best Kiteboarding, and their kites were proven as good as the competitive brands sold in stores. It is remarkable, that since then no other direct brand emerged taking significant share of the market. Otherwise, there would be a clear leader, and the OP wouldn't have to compile the decision list like the one in the beginning of the thread.


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