I write this to make everyone aware and to hopefully get CORE attention to a very serious issue: I owe core sensor 2S bar and had a dangerous situation that could have turned into a bad accident.During a downwinder i had to release the safety for a self rescue, but the line got stuck and the kite remained powered, dragging me towards a rocky shore. As I was about to let go the kite from harness and most likely have it all ripped apart, one of my steering lines snapped. Eventually I could control the kite.
This was not the first time i experienced this safety flaw on the same bar. So back home I did some research and the more i dig the more i find that this is an old problem on core bars, I found several kiters in different forums experiencing the same situation, i heard the local distributor admitting to have had these problems in at least three instances, one of them having the kiter end up in hospital ! I also find an official statement from CORE from November 2020 acknowledging the problem and offering free replacements of SSF / safety line kits. Here is the link viewtopic.php?t=2408269In
the forum kiters point out this problem is not new, and not only for the current sensor 3 bar, but for the previous sensor 2 type bars.
So I wrote to CORE through three different institutional email addresses and the only answer I got was from the Sales. They were quick to respond same day when it was about selling new steering lines, but took them more than one week to react to the safety concern. But all they did was to deny any request for an open conversation to technical staff and to say my only channel would be through the local distributor for China/ Hong Kong.
After a lengthy back-and-forth communication with the distributor that lasted more than a month, he finally agreed to send a replacement for the safety line kit together with the new steering lines I purchased though their website. And when the parcel arrived, and I thought i was over with this saga, I realised that none of what they send was helping to get my bar back in shape:
1) they sent the replacement safety line kit from an old model sensor 2, the lines do not even have the same thickness and colours, the CORE support guy in Hong Kong could not even begin to replace it when we met once to perform the change. Despite all my efforts to illustrate what was wrong through photos, emails, links to their own website, to date they are still not convinced they send the wrong thing and keep saying it will take weeks for them to research the topic... Really ?
2) the new steering lines, when installed at full power, are 30-40cm longer than the existing power lines, but again no one at CORE is responding and able to support or explain why is that so. They even said it is normal that after some time the lines can get stretched, failing to notice my text and photos showing that the new steering lines are longer, and not shorter, than the power lines.
3) the steering lines came with the end pigtail (kite connectors) never seen before quite different and thinner than the originals, and yet again no one comes forward to answer or give any explanation whatsoever.
The support ticket i opened at CORE website dates 29 September and to date this is the situation. I have all these parts that don't really fit, the only channel of communication is with the so called "local" distributor for China/Hong Kong, the support guy on the ground in Hong Kong (where i live) that could at least check the bar has been taken out of the picture based on the argument he did not sell me the bar so he should have nothing to do with it, and...well... me ? I still cannot go kiting for almost two months because I do not have a safe functional bar.
After all this, all i have been offered thus far was to send my bar to Germany or to China, pay for all shipping expenses and for all the parts that in their view may need replacement, with not even a chance to hear what the quotation might be or any regards to the fact they already sent wrong material that they once recognised they should be sending for free.
So I could simply send a big congratulation to CORE and all involved for the appalling customer service and support, and just move on to another respectful brand. But I still want to believe that a company with their reputation will do more for its patrons and proactively support their customers rather than give us more headaches than what we already got with all these product flaws.
Naive from my part ?