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Christmas, Components and Construction

Christmas, Components and Construction

Christmas, Components and Construction

Christmas is just around the corner and Santa already started shoving the final Whipper samples down our chimney here at Maui!

Step one whenever a product part is delivered is quality checking it ourselves. The first couple of boards arrived with a refined insert part and improved mast-base positioning. We fixed some small details and then let one of our prime quality control team members Nurel take it for a spin :) Nurel is a rad 7 year old german windsurfer who simply loves being on the water. She was stoked about the WhipperBoard and genuinely hopes that WhipperKids will make a lot of kids join her at sea!

 Nurel sailing

Meanwhile in China..  

The picture beneath shows the first batch of boards being quality controlled for leaks. In the factory they inflate every single board to maximum pressure and leave them overnight. Only if the pressure is exactly the same in the morning, the board is packed and shipped westwards. It is more than great for us to be able to oversee the production process closely, even though we are literally oceans apart from our colleagues in China!

 

Boards quality check

 

As you read this these boards are travelling in containers towards Cold Hawaii Denmark and Maui! Excited? We are to say the least!

 

And here on Maui..

The mast also entered the final production phase. Watch a video on how to assemble it and how it works right here;  

 

 

YUP! Thats right - you just have to whipp'it and it’s ready to rock. Telescopic COOLNESS if we may say ourselves!

 

When it comes to mast-base (the thing that connects the board with the rig), our initial plan was to equip all boards with a standard euro-pin mast-base. It turned out that these were not only super expensive but also way too heavy and over-dimensioned for our Whippers. Because of this as well as and the extended production time, we decided to create our own whipperized mastbase! It is going to be 1/4 the weight, a lot lower in profile and the edges will be softer. We already did a bunch of prototypes on our Maui-based 3d printer and so far they perform better than we wished for. The design is simply plain awesome! Here’s is a sneakpeak:

 

Unijoint drawing

 

Sooo.. Orders are finally open for worldwide shipping. We already had our first american customers and we are ELECTRIFIED! The storage is limited, so be quick if you'd like to hit the water at springtime!


And now to the most important thing of them all…

 

☃🎅🎄🎁  Have a JOYFUL CHRISTMAS and some HAPPY HOLIDAYS!  ☃🎅🎄🎁

ohana

3 of many learnings from setting up production in East-Asia

3 of many learnings from setting up production in East-Asia

If you did not notice – the WhipperKids equipment is unique in many aspects. Kids and adults alike may notice that it is super easy to rig, it is durable, it performs, it is feather light and it is affordable.

 

 The components in the Whipper are different down to the last detail. We have thought completely out of the box. The dark side of the medal is that we needed to start from the bottom  when getting this stuff made into a mass produced product.

 

Here are 3 learnings from my last trip to the land of chicken feet, big machines and hardworking people.

 

1. Let-go-and-label

 

In China there are tons of windsurf-equipment which is pre-produced and ready for labelling. That is why you often see different brand-names on the same product. There is nothing wrong with this, and many times these oem products are actually pretty good.

 

Most of the time the equipment is designed by Chinese engineers. They design/iterate upon existing products and that’s why radical new stuff rarely comes out.

 

It’s super easy to take advantage of this if you are new to the industry, but notif you want to stir up the pond and create some original stuff

 

2. Chinese are excellent craftsmen!

 

Whipperkids has to be the most accessible windsurf-gear on the market. A part of this strategy is to have our stuff made in East-Asia by a handful of different specialized manufacturers.

Many of these manufacturers never made windsurf equipment before (which also influences the price in a positive way). We chose a specific manufacturer because they are awesome at a specific craft, may it be thin-wall welding, 3d-sewing or rubber-tube extruding.

This strategy requires more instructions to the manufacturer, but in the end is worth it. The quality of the craftsmanship over there is just another level! When it goes wrong (and yes it does sometimes), it’s mostly because of misunderstandings, which is a result of not being there…

 

3. Be there or be square

 

 

This is my 2nd trip to East-Asia. Every trip has been a blast. Sci-fi architecture, dumpling-overload, lightning fast infrastructure and inspiration overdosis.

 

When being there, on the factory floor, you get as much done in an hour as you would do over 500 emails with the supplier. Because our suppliers have no clue on what they are actually creating, the chance for misunderstandings are rather high.  By being there, you can see what the factory is capable of making and agree over samples.

 

The norm is that you also eat dinner/lunch together which helps on building friendships / trust. This way you also get a taste of the local cuisine which can be cool if you have an experimental mindset!

 

Three quick learnings from the recent trip to East-Asia. You can follow the Whipperkids journey on Instagram & Facebook and order your own example on www.whipperkids.com.

 

Mahalo and Aloha till next time