Posted by: NewbTastic on Oct-04-12 1:29 PM (EST)
Thank you Salty, that was awesome to read. =]
A couple of thoughts:
1) The conservatism of the sea kayak market and it's 'geriatric' demographic are related, and are also a 'chicken or the egg' -type thing.
As in, exciting new ground-breaking designs might be able to slowly bring in new, younger paddlers, but those designs have a slim chance of being a success given the current conservative demographic in the sea kayaking world. How to break out of that 'chicken or the egg' paradox?
2) But to disagree with both the above and your post a bit, I wouldn't say that the sea kayaking world is *entirely* devoid of innovation.
'Fast expedition boats'/surf-ski-inspired designs such as the Epic 18X and Rockpool Taran are pretty cool and seem to be doing well. And of course the whole 'planing hull' playboat phenomenon, as set off by the Delphin.
But sure, lots of boats out there do seem almost like carbon copies of one another. I wonder if it's even possible to enumerate how many, say, NDK Explorer-clones there are. =\
Not sure what can be done about it. It almost feels like how movie studios plan out their summer offerings... you establish a franchise and milk it for all its worth (sequels/imitation of what's been successful before), while taking as few chances as possible. Maybe the business is just that tough.