Author Topic: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!  (Read 2251 times)

Solent Foiler

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Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« on: January 08, 2021, 02:36:55 PM »
I don't know if this is too much choice and let's hope there's quality and quantity. I guess we'll learn more about intended usage soon...

I like the look of the Kube - pretty radical design!
The Lethal might be my next board though...

Edit - copied the brief description from website.

Lance
https://youtu.be/u4qY5Eg8VzA
Lethal
https://youtu.be/SWTfortubzs
Flint
https://youtu.be/fY8ecF5I0m4
Lemon
https://youtu.be/HQlLTp9fqqQ
Mint
https://youtu.be/4X9ZIbEVfhk
Kube
https://youtu.be/GxGrY4bqs9M
Zuma
https://youtu.be/aXd92KiGnIE
Hipe
Mob2Taste

Hipe: the inflatable with 95% of the performance of the rigid. Ideal for beginners and much more!
Mob 2tastes: three sports in one board: SUP, SUPfoil and Wing.
Zuma: the easy rigid in SUPfoil in Wing, and with good performance.
Lance: the compact Zuma, very stable laterally, ideal for progressing in Wing.
Flint: high performance SUPfoil, top in Wing car simple and effective in light wind.
Kube: pure wing freestyle board. Minimum length for maximum rotations.
Mint: compactness without the difficulty with its round nose, but excellent performance.
Lemon: maximum reactivity and liveliness, while maintaining lateral stability.
Lethal: absolute radicalism among volume boards
« Last Edit: January 08, 2021, 03:28:54 PM by Solent Foiler »
I'm 5'10", 65kg riding:
Gong Flint 5'6 95L
Gong Catch 5'3 34L
Gong Veloce L and XL on 100 monoblock mast
Gong Pulse - 4m, 5m
Gong Superpower 6m

Dwight (DW)

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2021, 03:31:27 PM »
Some radical ideas. A 100 liter 4í2. Love it.

surfcowboy

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2021, 08:24:18 PM »
I agree. Guys, go to the site and spend 5 min checking the pics of the Kube. Itís like two boards stacked on top of each other.

Also cool to see the construction of their carbon masts. That might be my next big purchase. Long carbon mast for the ding.

peterp

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #3 on: January 09, 2021, 12:14:57 AM »
One wonders how much of this has actually been prototyped and tested? It's an impressive line-up with lots of good ideas but personally I'd be a little cautious about spending cash on a possible CAD experiment.

Would be nice to get some more info on their product development processes.

PonoBill

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #4 on: January 09, 2021, 08:19:35 AM »
Clever marketing if nothing else. There are some radical designs there, but mostly it's relatively minor variations. You could take every board a builder/designer like Dave Kalama or Mark Raaphorst and give it a different name instead of just dimensions and suddenly you have 40 recognizable sub-brands that people can talk about.

There's a lot to learn from watching how Gong and Blue Planet market their products. Both companies are too small to have a big marketing team using collective knowledge and marketing data to drive their business, but they've been at it long enough to have tried stuff that resonated with their target market.

These are relatively simple products to design and prototype, so the gap between design and testing is short. The real test will be what works in the market--these boards will be winnowed down to the winners, and winner means the ones that get bought. Giving each iteration and easily relatable name even though it will create confusion in the marketplace (which one should I get?) it's much easier to optimize. There isn't an easy way to optimally market just by size and intended function.

Smart people.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Dontsink

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2021, 12:23:34 PM »
Clever marketing if nothing else. There are some radical designs there, but mostly it's relatively minor variations. You could take every board a builder/designer like Dave Kalama or Mark Raaphorst and give it a different name instead of just dimensions and suddenly you have 40 recognizable sub-brands that people can talk about.

There's a lot to learn from watching how Gong and Blue Planet market their products. Both companies are too small to have a big marketing team using collective knowledge and marketing data to drive their business, but they've been at it long enough to have tried stuff that resonated with their target market.

These are relatively simple products to design and prototype, so the gap between design and testing is short. The real test will be what works in the market--these boards will be winnowed down to the winners, and winner means the ones that get bought. Giving each iteration and easily relatable name even though it will create confusion in the marketplace (which one should I get?) it's much easier to optimize. There isn't an easy way to optimally market just by size and intended function.

Smart people.

I might be wrong but i would say Gong sells +100 boards for every BluePlanet.
It is a big operation.

surfcowboy

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2021, 10:31:49 PM »
OK, have you guys seen the facility Gong is building in France? They arenít small anymore. You arenít just a ďshopĒ when you sell container load after container load.

As to R&D, they all ride. Check out Patrice, Beryl, and Malo (and more.) if you think they are Jimmy Styks or whatever thatís not who they are. They have a custom shop and shape like every other shaper.

Since when does Jimmy Lewis or Alex Aguera have a giant R&D budget, right? No offense but they or any of the other shapers arenít that well funded really. Hell the whole industry is basically guys making prototype wings in an industrial space, ordering them from China and storing them in that same space til some tiny shop sells 3 or 4 and orders more.

So, subscribe to their Instagram and YouTube channels and see if they have anyone pushing the limits on their stuff (they do.) Iíll try to find the piece on their new factory/warehouse.

This isnít because I own a foil of theirs. Itís just respect for someone who has clearly worked their ass off and just decided that the reseller channel doesnít fit what they want to do.

Shit, I sound like Colas. Hahahahahaha.   

surfcowboy

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2021, 10:40:39 PM »
The rendering.

https://youtu.be/-J2eQgnavbI

They broke ground a while back and have been posting construction photos.

My first wing is starting to show wear. Itís clearly not built that well (Rise series, the old stuff.) But my two newer wings are as nice as anyoneís in my crew. The mast and fuse, the same, cheap, Chinese aluminum, like the first Naish stuff. But now thereís a full carbon mast and guess what? They look and seem to perform like all the others. Itís just not in English and we donít read French and they donít give a damn if we do because they sell all they want to in Europe. 😂🤣

Things change. Companies grow. Iím not saying they are the best but they aren't alibaba and they arenít guessing. This is a plan.

PonoBill

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2021, 07:22:02 AM »
As much as I like walking into a surf shop, and love shops like Big Winds in Hood River, the reseller channel no longer really fits any business except bulk or semi bulk commodities. If UPS and FedEx weren't raising the costs of shipping absurdly and doing everything they can to kill the USPS the reseller channel would be dead, dead, dead.

Walmart, Amazon, and Costco have become behemoths by streamlining a clumsy distribution system. That would work and they'd be just as big and successful if the stream of goods from China was throttled to a trickle. Selling a product through distribution requires that the selling price be at least 3X the manufacturing cost, and generally, 4X is necessary for a worthwhile profit. DTC (Direct to consumer) only requires 2X and if shipping is finessed then it's 1.5X. As long as the reseller channel dominates and sets the price the DTC companies can charge 3X and pocket the added profit.  That's where Gong's big building is coming from. Well, that and the fact that companies with a strategy the market believes in have no trouble raising capital.

The marketing strategies for DTC companies are significantly different from reseller strategy. If Gong released 9 models of boards that all did more or less the same thing the distributors would say "Okay, we'll take 4 models but any we can't sell are coming right back to you. Sign this restocking contract. And we want extra margin for carrying all these." Worse yet, it would be a year or more before Gong really knew what was selling and a flood of unsellable boards came rolling back from dealers.

With a DTC model, they already know what the best-sellers are (they probably knew a few days after the models were released) and have a good idea where to ramp production for the spring.

Sounding like Colas is a good thing--he's one smart dude. I'd like to meet him some day.
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 07:25:00 AM by PonoBill »
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

Solent Foiler

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2021, 09:56:29 AM »
Before I knew about Gong, when I was just thinking about getting into winging, I really wanted to build a good relationship with my local store because I knew I was going to spend a load and if you spend it at the same place you hopefully will get some decent discounts. But even with this good intention, it just didn't work out - he couldn't get me the board I wanted (a Naish that had entirely sold out) so not his fault, so then got talking about options, and after chasing other stores eventually got a ex demo version of the board I wanted from somewhere else

It just struck me as a complicated way of doing business. I wanted a product but couldn't buy it - really frustrating. Even if Gong stuff isn't available, you know you won't have to wait until next seasons release before you get the opportunity again. You might have to be quick, but it's all signposted and you can pre-order. I least I know where I stand...

Again not saying Gong is perfect, but it's a much simpler way for a customer to do business, assuming they know what they want. Gong get praise from me here, for the amount of detail, description and information on their products.
I'm 5'10", 65kg riding:
Gong Flint 5'6 95L
Gong Catch 5'3 34L
Gong Veloce L and XL on 100 monoblock mast
Gong Pulse - 4m, 5m
Gong Superpower 6m

PonoBill

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2021, 12:43:39 PM »
Your reply is why I included Blue Planet in my response, not because of company size, but because Robert does videos about his products that explain all the features and why they are present. Explaining who a product suits and what specifications they should choose is a huge challenge for complex products like iPhones, but surfboards?

Most manufacturers leave it to you to figure it out. They used to rely on the magazines, but that's history, and of course, if they scored badly in a shootout that model or product was doomed and had no recourse other than spending a lot of money on advertising.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

surfcowboy

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2021, 07:48:33 PM »
Bill, couldnít agree more about Robert and Blue Planet. If he wasnít having such a good life Iím sure someone could fund him and scale his ideas. But damnit, living is Hawaii he just gets to work and surf and working 3x harder wouldnít get him a better life Iíll bet.  ;D

But I agree, explaining things is deep detail is what makes the difference. That usually comes from hanging at a local shop. But Robert, Real watersports and MacKite to name three have taken that experience into video and online to great effect.

PonoBill

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2021, 08:42:10 PM »
Same problem with Mark Raaphorst and Flying Dutchman. a superior product and a craftsman at the highest level, who is having a great life and doesn't want to sacrifice his water time. How could I possibly argue against that when all I ever did was work hard enough to get my "get fucked" money. I look at Elon Musk and think "ok, that's amazing, but I'd never want to do that". Does he have as much fun in a month as I do on a random Tuesday? I doubt it. The sense of accomplishment and the intellectual challenge must be fantastic, but the anguish? No thanks.
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

surfcowboy

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Re: Gong 2021 boards - 9 models!
« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2021, 06:49:05 PM »
Learned this lesson lol. Now Iím trying to figure out how to extract myself and some money from this thing I built lol.

Warning all younger people I meet to carefully consider what is ďenough.Ē  I had to play catch-up for a misspent youth. But then again, did I?

Anyway, I like the Gong stuff and i dig the vibe of Patrice and his family and crew. They seem to love the sport and thatís the root of any good water sports business. 

 


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