Forums: Skydiving: Gear and Rigging:
Gear Buying Culture?

 


Xitesmai  (Student)

Jan 7, 2013, 12:00 PM
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Gear Buying Culture? Can't Post

I searched for an answer to this but came up short.

As a SCUBA diver it is usually considered very bad form to order from the internet for your scuba gear. Its a quick way to piss off your local dive shop because they make money off the gear and sometimes not much off training and trips.

Does the same culture exist in the world of skydiving?

I certainly dont want to piss off my local DZ. Thanks.


wolfriverjoe  (A 50013)

Jan 7, 2013, 12:13 PM
Post #2 of 13 (1773 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

Short answer: No.

Many (most?) DZs don't have a full service loft/gear shop. In a lot of cases, ordering online is really the only option.

There's also a lot of small, part-time dealers who do a great job, have great prices and great service.

The biggies (ParaGear, Square 1, Chutingstar) do a pretty good job serving the market.

But, if you have a store/loft on your DZ, it's a good idea to support it. It may cost a little bit more, but keeping them going is going to cost you less in the long run.
There are exceptions to this of course. But I'd give my local store a chance to price match if I was making a major purchase (new rig or similar).


ChrisD  (No License)

Jan 7, 2013, 2:35 PM
Post #3 of 13 (1662 views)
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Re: [wolfriverjoe] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

"""But, if you have a store/loft on your DZ, it's a good idea to support it. It may cost a little bit more, but keeping them going is going to cost you less in the long run.
There are exceptions to this of course. But I'd give my local store a chance to price match if I was making a major purchase (new rig or similar).""""

True'r words never spoken. In fact many local Gear
Store's support their local DZO's. In fact I know of at least a handfull of gear stores that if they go under the attached DZ will close! Currently General Aviation Airports are under attack, and quite frankly skydiving as a whole ISN'T HELPING. We need to support GA and via vi we need to support our local gear stores.

This consideration, in the long run, might be way more of a factor than saving a few bucks!!!
C


davelepka  (D 21448)

Jan 7, 2013, 4:11 PM
Post #4 of 13 (1616 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
As a SCUBA diver it is usually considered very bad form to order from the internet for your scuba gear. Its a quick way to piss off your local dive shop because they make money off the gear and sometimes not much off training and trips

There are some differences. For starters, what does a typical beginner set-up for scuba run? Fins, mask, wetsuit, snorkel, regualtor, etc? $1000? Less?

A beginner skydiving rig, if you buy it used and get a good deal is going to run $2000/$2500, and that's without an AAD. Add $1000/$1200 for an AAD. If you buy new, you're looking at twice that (or more).

The point is that the money is way different, and if you're looking for used gear (a great idea for a first rig) there's no saying that your local store will have what you need. It's not like they can order a used rig to suit your needs. They might be able to help you track one down, but that's another story.

However, to echo what others have said, if you have a local gear store or your DZ sells some stuff, give them a shot when you're getting ready to pull out your wallet. It may cost a bit more, but then you have to weigh the benefit of supporting your local store/DZ, and having a 'live' person to help you both before and after the sale.


Xitesmai  (Student)

Jan 8, 2013, 7:04 AM
Post #5 of 13 (1448 views)
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Re: [davelepka] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:

There are some differences. For starters, what does a typical beginner set-up for scuba run? Fins, mask, wetsuit, snorkel, regualtor, etc? $1000? Less?

A beginner skydiving rig, if you buy it used and get a good deal is going to run $2000/$2500, and that's without an AAD. Add $1000/$1200 for an AAD. If you buy new, you're looking at twice that (or more).

The point is that the money is way different, and if you're looking for used gear (a great idea for a first rig) there's no saying that your local store will have what you need. It's not like they can order a used rig to suit your needs. They might be able to help you track one down, but that's another story.

Usually for scuba it runs in stages. For the beginner class you're looking at a basic set: mask, fins, snorkel, boots. Usually with a price tag of about $200 to $350. From there there is a wet suit ($200-$400), Computer ($300 - $1500), BCD ($200-$800), Regulator set (~$500+), Compass, dive light, etc. Then if you decide to continue training an get into technical diving, there are canister lights ($1600), dry suit ($2000), Spools, Reels, lift bags, etc.

Effectually they can be just as expensive, however the cost is spread over a large training and gear gap...so you dont HAVE to spend it if your comfortable diving a reef and looking at pretty fish.

It seems like the cost of skydiving is somewhat the same, but more front loaded in terms of cost.

Basic gear is altimeter ($100-$1600), goggles/glasses ($30-$200) and a helmet ($~200). But the A license training is roughly $3500.

From there you can rent DZ gear, jumpsuit and rig, until you find what you want to buy, much like scuba...most divers dont have there own regulators, tanks, and BCD...they just rent from the dive shop.

The long and short of it is that I want to support my local DZ, and if they have a store (which they do) I'm going to go through them when I can.


degeneration  (C 106811)

Jan 8, 2013, 7:43 AM
Post #6 of 13 (1397 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

$1600 for an alti?!

What one?! What can I get for that money?


weekender  (C License)

Jan 8, 2013, 8:48 AM
Post #7 of 13 (1362 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

a big difference is that you do not dive at your LDS(local dive shop), where you usually jump at your DZ and the pro shop is there. It is much easier in skydiving for the pro shop to add value to your life thus creating a more loyal customer. Many, if not most scuba divers do not spend their weekends at their LDS. i have been diving since the 80's and jumping about 5 years. I find my pro shop adds a large value to my experience justifying any markups. Which, fyi, they dont always do if you educate yourself on prices. I have never found that kind of value from a LDS.


Xitesmai  (Student)

Jan 8, 2013, 2:11 PM
Post #8 of 13 (1275 views)
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Re: [degeneration] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
$1600 for an alti?!

What one?! What can I get for that money?

Military Altitrack is current running $1650 from paragear. SSK is alittle less.


Xitesmai  (Student)

Jan 8, 2013, 2:14 PM
Post #9 of 13 (1274 views)
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Re: [weekender] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
a big difference is that you do not dive at your LDS(local dive shop), where you usually jump at your DZ and the pro shop is there. It is much easier in skydiving for the pro shop to add value to your life thus creating a more loyal customer. Many, if not most scuba divers do not spend their weekends at their LDS. i have been diving since the 80's and jumping about 5 years. I find my pro shop adds a large value to my experience justifying any markups. Which, fyi, they dont always do if you educate yourself on prices. I have never found that kind of value from a LDS.

I'm not disagreeing with you in any way...I fully intend to support my DZ in anyway that I can...whether that be from buying from the gear store, or something as simple as setting up beer for the jumpers coming in from the last load.

I was just curious as to whats considered taboo in regards to gear buying.


ChrisD  (No License)

Jan 8, 2013, 2:58 PM
Post #10 of 13 (1238 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

In reply to:
In reply to:
a big difference is that you do not dive at your LDS(local dive shop), where you usually jump at your DZ and the pro shop is there. It is much easier in skydiving for the pro shop to add value to your life thus creating a more loyal customer. Many, if not most scuba divers do not spend their weekends at their LDS. i have been diving since the 80's and jumping about 5 years. I find my pro shop adds a large value to my experience justifying any markups. Which, fyi, they dont always do if you educate yourself on prices. I have never found that kind of value from a LDS.

I'm not disagreeing with you in any way...I fully intend to support my DZ in anyway that I can...whether that be from buying from the gear store, or something as simple as setting up beer for the jumpers coming in from the last load.

I was just curious as to whats considered taboo in regards to gear buying.

Same as your local Dive shope,... Dude. Can you walk into your local dive shop with your new Scuba pro XL9000, with a straight face, that you just purchased from a big box store? And say "Hey, mate,...look what I just saved 10 euros on!
"
C


davelepka  (D 21448)

Jan 8, 2013, 6:34 PM
Post #11 of 13 (1135 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

Quote:
For the beginner class you're looking at a basic set: mask, fins, snorkel, boots. Usually with a price tag of about $200 to $350. From there there is a wet suit ($200-$400), Computer ($300 - $1500), BCD ($200-$800), Regulator set (~$500+), Compass, dive light, etc. Then if you decide to continue training an get into technical diving, there are canister lights ($1600), dry suit ($2000), Spools, Reels, lift bags, etc.

I get that, what I was talking about was the minimum gear needed to participate as a beginner. I'm talking beyond training and certification, once your all set and ready to participate on a regular basis.

You 100% need a complete rig to jump. A used one will run you a couple thousand bucks. Like your example above, you can add every cool gadget, accesory, and piece of advanced gear. Try a custom jumpsuit for $750. How about a wingsuit for $1500? A camera helmet can set you back another $1000. The list goes on.

The point is that you need a rig, and it's a big expense, and if you're shopping used, it's a matter of who has whatever it is you need. In terms of dive gear, it smaller ticket items, and most of them are bought new.

In the end, the answer to your question is that you can buy whatever you want, where ever you want, and nobody will give you shit about it. It is nice to help out your local dealers when you can, but not frowned upon if you buy your stuff elsewhere. If their prices are good, and the service is good, you'll simply want to buy from them and won't even consider shopping elsewhere.


J-Rock  (D 27385)

Jan 8, 2013, 7:59 PM
Post #12 of 13 (1103 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

I spent 6 years scuba diving quite frequently and was heavily involved with a local club that was affiliated with a shop. I started skydiving about 5 years before I ever got into diving and I can say the dive industry is nothing like the skydiving industry. Our shop would always warn everyone of "gray market" products that are sold on the Internet for far less than the shop could sell it for. They said the products were copies made in china and that is why many of the large companies would not sell their products on the Internet in order to combat the problem. The dive shops will use this as a ploy to sell you their product and then make you have you gear serviced by them in order to keep the warranty, but I'm sure you have experienced all of this. All the shops in my area seemed to pretty cut throat and non of the owners like each other. The shop I was affiliated with is now out of business so I get everything off the Internet and my air from the local fire department.

Buy gear wherever you want, if your local shop has what you want then buy it from them and if they don't then get it elsewhere. If you find something on the net for less than your local dealer ask them if they will match the price, you might be surprised. Fortunately the skydiving industry doesn't suffer the same problems as the dive industry when it comes to copied items. Other than that you still have people that are loyal to their local shops and drop zones but you will have that anywhere.


Premier GravityGirl  (D 18897)

Jan 9, 2013, 10:06 PM
Post #13 of 13 (965 views)
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Re: [Xitesmai] Gear Buying Culture? [In reply to] Can't Post

As a long time gear dealer, I make it a point to "hook up" everyone that walks through my door. That means get them into the right gear for their skill set at a fair price.

I feel like the kids that go looking for the bigger, better deal online don't get the service they deserve. If I don't have what you are looking for, then I will refer you out or help you find something.

We are a small community and tend to look out for our own. So it's worth checking in locally and then branching as necessary.

Just my opinion.... worth what you paid for it!



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