How good are Stellar skis

More
12 years 8 months ago #3748 by adman1
anyone paddled a Stellar ski, and in particular the SE excel and the SE ultra.Just sold my glass Mako 6 and looking to upgrade.
Any thoughts would be appreciated

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3751 by thebigadski
I heard of them about 2 weeks ago.......supposed to be made out of the same factory as the epics????? !!!! I wonder if epic can confirm this as they look pretty similar?????

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago - 10 years 8 months ago #3753 by jbrings
D
Last edit: 10 years 8 months ago by jbrings. Reason: want to remove

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago - 10 years 8 months ago #3754 by jbrings
D
Last edit: 10 years 8 months ago by jbrings. Reason: remove

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3756 by garykroukamp
Have you looked at the Fenn Elite, the "upgrade " to the Mako 6?

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3760 by richtlr
I've just looked at the photo's on the website, has anyone seen that design of cockpit drain before?
It looks like you twist it to open and close. A very simple and innovative designe if it works efficiently.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • StuartXpat
  • Visitor
12 years 8 months ago #3761 by StuartXpat
Replied by StuartXpat on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
I must congratulate them - I have been working on a similar idea myself but have not got it to a working model yet.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3762 by jbrings
I had the chance to see that drain at the Kanumesse Trade Fair in N?nrberg, Germany and agree that it is a simple and efficient solution. It's either that or an andersen bailer.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3770 by AdamV10L
I second jbrings earlier comments, if its the same mould as the V10 Epic "why not just buy an Epic".

But lets not even start the origial V/S copy debate again. Last time was 100's of emotional replys.

It's worth noting the Epics comming out of their new factory have improved on their previous high quality of finish and look the goods.
The following user(s) said Thank You: JonathanC

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3771 by richtlr
I think the Anderson bailer on my V12 is the way forward for manufacturers as it is only slightly less efficient than the bailers on the Surf 70Pro plus it can be closed to reduce what little drag there is.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago #3773 by nell
Replied by nell on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
With regard to this quote from above:

"They used to manufacture skis for Epic and their business relationship turned sour. They kept the moulds."

Does this mean that the Stellar skis are from the factory / people that supposedly "screwed" Epic by way of dishonest business dealings, then kept Epic's molds hostage - as has been rumored? I hope not. If true, though, how could someone support this new company with a clear conscious? Maybe someone can clarify this further?
Erik

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

  • StuartXpat
  • Visitor
12 years 8 months ago #3774 by StuartXpat
Replied by StuartXpat on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
Well at the end of the day it comes down to price. There are few who would let their principles stand in the way of saving a few bucks on a product that is presumeably the same (if not better - I do prefer the stronger deck line at the front of the cockpit and the sturdier rudders). Maybe it is indeed time for WinTech to give their side of the story about who got screwed. David? Ed? Frank?

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago - 12 years 8 months ago #3775 by robin.mousley

Maybe it is indeed time for WinTech to give their side of the story about who got screwed.


Wintech has nothing to do with Stellar. All Stellar says on their website is that their products are made in the same factory (Flying Eagle) as the Wintech products.

Rob

Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
Last edit: 12 years 8 months ago by robin.mousley.

Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

More
12 years 8 months ago - 12 years 8 months ago #3776 by robin.mousley
I haven't seen the boats so I can't comment on the hull shapes. This is however what I do know and/or believe to be the case:

  • Stellar, who to the best of my knowledge have no previous experience in ski paddling or manufacture, have almost overnight come up with a range of skis that seem remarkably similar to the Epic skis
  • The skis are being built by the same company in the same factory that used to build the Epic skis in China. Epic is involved in a legal dispute with this company and is inter alia seeking to recover materials and moulds for its range of skis from it.
  • Last year, there were representatives from a factory in China who came to our races here in SA who were looking for agents to sell skis that looked exactly like V10s

  • Looking at the Stellar website:

  • "Stellar Kayaks and Skis was founded in 2008 by two well known Olympic and Australian rowers Ian and Gordon Clubb"
  • "The latest in Kayak and Ski design has been captured in these products by designers Ed Hoffmeister and Dave Thomas of the US." These guys are well known rowing shell designers.

  • So miraculously, Stellar have suddenly come up with not one, but a range of boats...

    On their website, they say: "Many of the kayaks and skis on the market today are copies of existing hull shapes and design. Stellar has changed all this with the belief that it is time for a completely new designs taking the best of rowing, ski and kayak design features and combining this with the latest in computer design and tank testing to ensure the perfect finished product."

    Can you believe this? I'm not sure but it seems highly unlikely to me. When a competitor springs out of nowhere where:

  • the owners of the company have no previous involvement in the sport
  • the skis are reported by their own agents to be like the Epic skis
  • the skis are being built by a manufacturer hostile to Epic who still has the Epic moulds

  • You have to ask questions.

    You say, "at the end of the day it comes down to price". That's a very sad thing if it's true.

    Epic and Fenn have been pouring money into the sport, sponsoring events in Mauritius, South Africa, Australia, the US, Europe. Both have been suffering the effects of copying - there are two European manufacturers one of whom blatantly copies the V10, the other the Mako6 and Mako XT. (The Europeans who don't copy - like Nordic Kayaks and Nelo must loath the copiers because the impression is that "European manufacturers just don't care - steal the designs, copy, no-one cares." )

    Is it fair that another company should come in, steal their designs, take sales away from them? Of course not. And what will happen is that the Fenns and Epics of this world will stop investing in new designs and we'll be stuck with the old ones. They'll stop sponsoring races and racers and we'll be stuck with parochial little local races.

    I'd also like to hear from Stellar - I'd like to know who did the designs for them, how rowing specialists could suddenly design skis without input from ski paddlers and what their intentions are with putting money into the sport. Right now I'm deeply suspicious!

    Rob

    Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
    Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
    Last edit: 12 years 8 months ago by robin.mousley.

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    More
    12 years 8 months ago #3777 by Dicko
    Replied by Dicko on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
    All good points Rob. but the stellar boat is 1 cm wider and
    5cm longer according to the websites. If this is the case then obviously the moulds are different. How much do you need to change a design to call it original. If they'd changed the deck shape no-one would be complaining.

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    More
    12 years 8 months ago #3778 by rojo
    Replied by rojo on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
    What the website claims is one thing, the real dimensions are another ... How many paddlers actually check the real dimensions and weights of their boat?

    As far as I know the European manufacturers Rob is complaining about both put different decks on an otherwise unchanged hull. Personally I agree with him that this is a highly questionable practice that I will support.


    Cheers

    RoJo

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    • StuartXpat
    • Visitor
    12 years 8 months ago #3779 by StuartXpat
    Replied by StuartXpat on topic Re:How good are Stellar skis
    Rob, just to clarify a point. We go for copies in almost every walk of life, generic MP3 players instead of iPods, Daewoos instead of Golfs etc etc. In the paddling world, almost every K1 and K2 manufactured in SA is a knock off as are all the paddles (include Epic in this one).

    In the end, the V10 is a 6 year old design, not exactly cutting edge. The way that market leaders stay there is by being market leaders and keeping ahead of those who do the reverse engineering in design and construction techniques. If there are copyright infringements, it is up to the copyright holder to prove, enforce and get damages.

    I'm sorry if I don't sound sympathetic but its a tough world out there. Maybe Epic products could be more competitively priced if they didn't have such a large team to support.

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    More
    12 years 8 months ago #3780 by robin.mousley

    If this is the case then obviously the moulds are different. How much do you need to change a design to call it original. If they'd changed the deck shape no-one would be complaining.


    Here's the critical point. It's clearly wrong for manufacturers to steal other company's designs, so any reputable outfit would want to avoid that accusation.

    Indeed, on their website, Stellar themselves say, "Many of the kayaks and skis on the market today are copies of existing hull shapes and design. Stellar has changed all this with the belief that it is time for a completely new designs taking the best of rowing, ski and kayak design features and combining this with the latest in computer design and tank testing to ensure the perfect finished product."

    Unfortunately for Stellar, it's indisputable that:
    - They've come from nowhere with no previous surfski or sea kayak experience
    - They've developed a range of craft in about a year - an incredible achievement
    - They're using a manufacturer that is known to have kept the moulds of a previous manufacturer.
    - Their own agents in Western Australia point out the similarities between their skis and the Epic skis.

    So any reasonable person would put two and two together and say that there must at least be a suspicion that Stellar have used the Epic moulds albeit slightly modified.

    Happily though, it should be easy for Stellar to prove otherwise.

    For example, during Epic's development of their products, they sent me images of their CAD drawings, allowed me to interview the designer, they sent photos of the plug being CNC machined, etc.

    In other words there was photographic and other proof that they were doing original design work. Part of this was the fact that the V10 was called the V10 because it was the tenth iteration of the design. It took them ten goes (and years of effort) to get it right.

    I'm sure that Stellar would be able to produce similar proof. Where are the drawings? How were the plugs machined? How did they design the cockpits given that they've hardly ever even paddled skis? Who was their expert surfski consultant? How many prototypes did they make? Where were they tested?

    I'd hate to cast aspersions at Stellar if they are legit - if they are, they have a right to exist just like anyone else. But if they did steal Epic's designs then everyone should know about it.

    Personally I don't think a company that starts off by stealing other people's designs is likely to add much to our community.

    Rob

    Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
    Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    More
    12 years 8 months ago #3781 by YBA/Jim Murray
    Any object can be scanned and its dimensions saved, then downloaded to a CNC machine program. Now you can mill a plug that is an exact reproduction of your scan. You can also slightly alter some dimensions before milling, but that might be tricky. Software for marine architecture would, I suppose, solve those problems to some degree.
    Copying boats-even a range of boats is pretty straight forward and quickly done.
    Developing a new design is tremendous amount of work and takes a long time. The first-or the fifth- plug will probably have to be tweaked until you get a boat that works well. If it is being done for a high production factory I expect the time factor will increase.
    How long did it take to get the first Van Dusen K1 or the first Epic surf ski?
    If it looks like a goose, honks like a goose and shits every two minutes then it must be a goose- not a songbird.
    Jim

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    More
    12 years 8 months ago - 12 years 8 months ago #3782 by robin.mousley
    Hey Stuart,

    A couple of points:

    I asked Greg Barton specifically about his paddle designs. They are original, with the blade shape designed by him in CAD and CNC machined. So don't "include Epic in this one".

    You know as well as I do that copyright on marine hulls is impractical to defend in the courts. The manufacturers can only look to the public to help them fight against rip-offs.

    We're not just talking V10, but the V12 too which is a much more recent design. In any case, whether it's 6 years old or not, the V10 is still a top competitor. It's not as if they'd be copying an obsolete, discontinued model.

    You're right, you definitely don't sound sympathetic! Where would YOU draw the line? Do you believe in total laisser faire? Choose a ski, copy it and sell it as fast as possible, to hell with the original designers? Surely not!

    Rob

    Currently Fenn Swordfish S, Epic V10 Double.
    Previously: Think Evo II, Carbonology Zest, Fenn Swordfish, Epic V10, Fenn Elite, Red7 Surf70 Pro, Epic V10 Sport, Genius Blu, Kayak Centre Zeplin, Fenn Mako6, Custom Kayaks ICON, Brian's Kayaks Molokai, Brian's Kayaks Wedge and several others...
    Last edit: 12 years 8 months ago by robin.mousley.

    Please Log in or Create an account to join the conversation.

    Latest Forum Topics

    Protected by R Antispam