Since ON3P is obviously getting thrown into the mix here, I figure I would explain the way we deal with edge issues. Obviously I respect what Revision is doing here. Given the context of this thread, I'm sure we'll come off sort of as the bad guy here, but our approach is a bit different. Skis are a tool with a life span, and rail damage is part of the game. Rail damage is not a manufacturing defect. It isn't an issue at the factory. It is a metal edge hitting a metal bar over and over and there is so much that can be built into the skis to prevent that. We spend a ton of extra money and time putting edges and bases in our skis that are the thickest you can get, but the reality is that they are a life extender, not a end-all to prevent skis from getting edge cracks. Not expecting edge cracks is just not realistic. If you are going to hit rails all day, especially if you don't know how to prep and maintain your skis, you're gonna have a bad time, period. Take care of your skis and they will last. We view our warranty like that of a car. Delamming tip & tail? Probably our fault. Replace the ski. Crashed your car repeatedly into a wall? There is nothing we can do to prevent the damage from that.
If you hit a rail without detuning your edges correctly, or even just land on a rail incorrectly, they can crack first day. Again, we are taking about a little piece of metal impacting a big piece of metal with thousands of lbs of force. This year, we've even minorly detuning the FR underfoot at the factory because it seems so few people know how to prep their skis for rails.
Our approach to this, while I suppose we have done a poor job promoting it (which will change when our new website/warranty page drops) basically says we won't warranty for rail damage (because, it is impact damage, nothing to do with the ski construction or materials), but any damage you want to send our way, we will fix at no charge and return the skis to you. We're not the only people who operate this way - I believe Icelantic does this as well. If you edge pulls out, send them here, we will replace the edge, clean up the ski, and send them back to you with a fresh set of edges in there. We are happy to provide that service free of charge, but I personally believe replacing skis outright due to edge damage, especially because the vast majority of severe damage we see is from 1) no detune 2) no swapping skis 3) no sliding both ways and 4) no maintainance of your skis, isn't a fair request of ski manufacturers.
I would say 90+% of the time we see really bad edge pull outs, the ski have several shared characteristics. 1) All the damage is on just one edge, or at worst, one side. The vast majority of the time, all the damage is on one single edge and the other 3 edges often don't even have a crack. 2) The edges still, even after sliding a lot of rails, aren't detuned properly. 3) Crack was noticed, began to get worse, and ski kept being used instead of taking 30 minutes and doing a bit of maintenance to protect your investment.
If you want your edges to last...
1) Swap your left and right skis.
2) Learn to slide both ways.
3) Actually detune your skis. Everyone says they do, but I would say maybe 1/4 do it correctly.
4) If you see cracks, deal with them. Once a crack forms, water is getting in the ski. Water = Satan 666. Once water is getting in your ski, the clock is ticking until it falls apart.
Obviously in our case, it sucks to have to send your skis back to get repaired. It sucks here, too. We're busy building skis, so time is scarce. But we'd rather see the skis in person, ensure they are just normal rail damage, and fix them right with the correct base/edges and our factory tune than have you guys have to pay out the ass at a shop.
Hat's off to Revision if they feel comfortable doing it. Obviously, as everyone discussed here, there is risk involved and that is just business. From that standpoint, pretty simple equation. If profit from sales increase > cost of replacing skis, then obviously a great move. That said, in ON3P's case, I don't think it respects the work/cost/effort that goes into our skis. We're not some factory in China who can pump out skis for a few hundred dollars and make a living. I can promise you that there isn't a lot of money in running your own ski factory, building quality skis with quality materials. A huge amount of effort goes into every pair, so I can tell you there is certainly frustration on our end to see people destroy skis by killing one edge, then bitching us out, sending the skis in where we find that the ski has 3 sharp, completely intact edges and 1 blow out edge. Some of that is a failure on education on our part, most likely. We've talked about doing a how to keep your park skis alive piece for awhile, but just haven't had the time. Definitely something I will try to get out this year.
That vast majority of our team skis on 2 pairs of park skis per season. That is a lot of days on a lot of rails by guys who aren't small and ski hard, so we know our product can last without edge issues if the skis are prepped, maintained, and skied properly. That same stuff would go for all skis out there.
Construction wise, I don't think replacing skis for edge damage is a realistic reflection of where the ski construction is right now. As Logan and Nellyyy talked about a bit below, the impact tech just isn't there yet. We use the thickest edge, stronger base, and strongest sidewalls we can. Eventually, you will still wear your edges down though.
There is a particular design that had the potential to deal with edge issues that we were considering a few years ago, but once we found out it was patented by another brand we bailed. I am not sure when it runs out, but once it does there will be some interesting possibilities to explore. Going to be awhile though...
We're testing a bunch of different materials right now, even from some giant companies like Dupont, but until ski manufacturers can figure out how to maintain a carvable edge that can still take metal-to-metal impacts thousands of times under enormous force, your best bet it to get solid skis, prep them right, ski them right, and maintain them if they need work.
Our production manager (who has been here 4 years) is still skiing park on the pair of 10/11 Jeronimos he got for his internship. If they have an edge crack, he cleans it up, dries it out, drops a bit of epoxy in there to seal it up, clamps it overnight, scraps it off, keeps skiing. They easily have 120+ park days on them and still have all their edge.
The honest truth is that if you can't get edges to last more than a month, on ANY SKI, it is likely you, not the ski.
Here is one other consideration here. You can offer a 1 year, with edge damage covered, or you could offer a 2-3 year, with no edge damage covered. A pair ski with a 3-year warranty that covered edge damage would see a warranty rate of 100%. That just isn't realistic, especially for US-based manufacturers who are spending 2x the cost of building skis in China/Europe, but still charging in the same ballpark as most foreign built skis (Revision being the obviously except on price here, which I can tell you domestically no one actually building their own skis - Moment, Praxis, Folsom, ON3P, etc - could even come close to).
I know we are increasing our warranty this year, but it covers the things that we screw up, not what you screw up. That is the separation that I don't think is really understood by customers. It isn't that we want to screw you over, take your money, and deal with you hating us vocally in the forums in the next decade. It is that your edge cracks are not our fault, just like base damage or topsheet chipping isn't our fault. That is skiing.
Here is the other bit of insight here. ON3P receives warranty claims of less than 1% of the skis we build. Most of that 1% is edge related and in the conditions describe above. So, give the volume, we could afford to warranty the skis that we feel are user-damaged and not a real warranty claim. That said, how do you draw the right line? I want to treat every customer the same, and the other way to do that is with a policy that has a defined line. If I warranty the kid with 3" of edge missing, but not 2.5", that is a pretty tough place to be. Also, it becomes a very slippery slope going forward.
Looking at it as a brand, as much as we would love to stoke out the few customer who have bad rail damage, that just isn't fair to the guys in here who bust their ass for shit pay building the best skis we can. I think our approach respects the hard work all our employees puts in so you guys have an option to buy skis made by people you know, made in the USA, and made right.
So, there is a novel. I hope that offers some insider insight into how we view this issue, because trust us, it is one of the most discussed issues at our factory. We want you to be on your skis, we'll fix them free of charge, and do everything else we can, within reason, to make you happy. But we have to respect our work, our cost, and our brand and this is how we feel we should do it. Different strokes for different folks, and obviously Revision feels differently. We're very different brands in what we do (manufacturer vs marketer) so I think we have a pretty unique prospective given we build the product we sell.
keithnollYou're just scared because you work for on3p
We're very scared.
nellyyyPark skis are like skate decks but on a slightly longer timeline. No skate company is going to warranty a deck some kid broke trying to ollie El Toro, and no company is realistically going to find it financially viable to guarantee skis that have rail damage.
In my opinion, the real void in the ski industry that should be discussed/expected isn't a lack of this kind of warranty program but rather a truly bomb-proof price point ski.
Bomb-proof price-point is sort of a oxymoron right now. That said, people are working on it.
CheddarJackTheir warranty reads:
"EDGE DAMAGE. Revision understands that you are likely to put these skis through the paces on rails, boxes, dumpsters, booters, concrete, trees, chair lifts, etc. If you read the warranties of our competitors, you will see that most would void a warranty for damage which would appear to be caused by this type of riding. We are different, and don’t want you to be out a pair of skis because you are using them as intended. As such, within reason and based on our sole judgement, we will warranty significant edge damage which we feel the ski should have held up to. NOTE: this is intended to provide you with a replacement for a ski which is essentially trashed, making the ski unridable – we consider this as damage of a minimum of 6″ continuous section of ski edge that has fallen out (or 4″ directly underfoot, between the bindings) as a result of this type of riding. We see a lot of park and street riders who keep riding with cracked edges and smaller missing pieces, and expect that you can, too. Revision reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to void the warranty of any purchaser it finds to have purposefully removed ski edge material for the purpose of filing a warranty claim.
Excluded under this warranty are the following:
Damage cause by neglect, misuse, or abuse
Snapped skis related to impacts, including but not limited to: rocks, rails, boxes, stumps, trees, concrete, parking lots, on-mountain equipment, chairlifts, etc.
Damage in the form of chips, dents, or indentations to the topsheets or bases
Damage caused by the improper mounting, adjustment, or use of bindings
Damage caused by solvents or adhesives
Graphic fading or discoloring, if due to misuse or neglect.
Normal wear and tear."
This seems pretty understandable. Almost as if it should really be the norm. 6 inches of missing edge is very substantial. You should have to really beat on your skis for that to happen. It's not like they're going replace your skis as soon as you get a few edge cracks or your topsheets chip, which is generally all that happens to well built skis after a year of the average skier riding them. Keep in mind warranties generally pay for themselves because generally more people buy them because of the warranty than people who return them. I mean look at LL Bean. No questions asked life time warranty on their products and look at where that brought them. If you make a good product, it'd be stupid NOT to offer a bomb warranty.
Good move, Revision.
"We will warranty significant edge damage which we feel the ski should have held up to. NOTE: this is intended to provide you with a replacement for a ski which is essentially trashed."
The hardest grey area here is what you define as a warranty under the terms. I'm sure they will work it out, but the dark side of this is that there will be people who purposely go out of their way to make damage worse that normal to utilize this. That is what I mean about this type of policy not honoring the hard work people put into the skis they build. The concern would be that it opens up the door to the possibility of abuse for something that pretty much industry wide is viewed as no different than impact damage to the base. I just think the expectation that ski companies should be replacing skis for edge damage, considering what hitting rails with skis actually is, just isn't realistic.
SkiJunkyJSkis aren't expensive to make when you manufacture them in larger quantities
Maybe overseas. I can tell you that we need to be making a lot more skis before this is true for us though...
PilleDaKidThis past season I've seen a pair of Line Chronics and a pair of ON3P Filthy Riches have an edge rip out within the first month of them being skied, and both companies did nothing about it, which to me seems really lame. (Not trying to bash these companies I personally love riding Line and ON3P's skis)
Same skier on both skis? As was stated above, if they contacted us, we would have extended the same offer we give to all of our customers - we don't warranty edge damage, but we will repair it free of charge. If that is doing nothing and really lame, so be it, but I feel it is fair given the circumstances.
My honest opinion, if someone is blowing out the edges on the Chronic or Filthy Rich, both built with thicker edges, in less than a month each, that isn't just the skis and there are surely things they could be doing to change the life of their skis (detune properly, swap skis, slide both ways, etc).
There are only 2 edge manufacturers in the world, and all the brands are buying from the same places. The edge material is all basically the same. The only thing at ON3P we can do is get the biggest material we can - which is 2.5mm x 2.5mm. It give you more life, but the wrong impact will still crack the edge. Add water and you're now missing several inches of edge. Take steps to prevent cracking (detune), wear the edges evenly (swap skis and slide both ways), and prevent water from getting in the ski (fill extra cracks with epoxy + clamp) and you should get a lot of life out of your skis.
If the person in question would still like help on the FR (I'm not sure if they contacted us or not, it would have come to me if they had), tell them to get in touch and we will fix the skis at no charge and send them back. My email is scott AT on3pskis DOT com.