The past several months have been very busy! First off, Kait and I welcomed a baby boy into this world. His name is Louie and his parents could not be more proud! You can see that he’s joined Ichiban Moto, he’s pretty bad ass! Second, I have been churning out shocks, shock features, and working on new products.
Having a baby is obviously the biggest news I have to announce, but in the world of motorsport I have more big news. Specifically in regards to a new damper (shock) package, dubbed the CL CompTech line, that I have personally designed and will start selling sometime in early spring. This damper package will be of a more premium design than my current RFY offerings, as a result the expected price point will also be higher. However final pricing has not yet been decided upon, and there will be a range of options. The CL CompTech package will offer a fully customizable purchase levels. This includes custom lengths, custom colors, custom spring rates, and even custom dampening. As of now, the prototype design phase is nearly completed. The materials are at my shop and the partners who will do the machine processes are lined up. Sometime after the first of the year I will have a working prototype in my hands. As this process continues I plan to continue posting updates. Moreover, CLCompTech.com is live and active, though currently it points to the CLMotoTech page. And one last thing, the damper will be manufactured completely in the USA! I’m very excited about this, I believe this is the next step in my motorcycle suspension evolution and hope that it will bridge the gap between very low cost damper packages and the ultra expensive units we wold all like to have.
I have also instituted a referral program for my store. Much of my business is driven by word of mouth sales. I figured that it is time to repay those who say good things about me. You will need an account here, you can create one or log into an existing account by using the My Account menu option at the top of the page. In your account settings you will get a referral URL. If you supply this URL to a friend and they purchase using that URL, you will receive a 10% of coupon code via email. This coupon code is good for up to 180 days, and is valid on all purchases over $75. More information can be found on the referral program FAQ.
Finally, you may also notice that I have made a couple of site-wide changes. First and foremost I have added the aforementioned My Account link to the sitewide menu. This will help all of my customers and subscribers better manage their account settings. Next up, I removed my sites long time motto of “Arugula, Sizzlemop, and cheese like substance.” While I love this motto, it admittedly can be confusing, that was the point really. That in mind, I am looking to make my site a little nicer these days and so I decided to drop that tag line. It will be missed dearly.
As always, be safe and have fun out there!
Congrats on the baby boy Chris that is awesome. Glad to see you are making a new shock that is pretty exciting. I don’t race or anything but ride my bike like I stole it. If you need or would like volunteers to try out your shock I would be more than happy to. Not looking for free shocks just offering to assist if I can. Every time I see a set of RFY shocks your name comes out of my mouth.
Wish the best of luck with the new baby and look forward to seeing your new shocks.
Thanks, Jon! I will need some testers so I’ll keep you in mind!
Here is a topic on KZRIDER.COM that you might be interested in.
Thanks for that. I’m not going to post, but the answer seems clear. If people want a $250 package, they should pay for RFY’s and my rebuild. I can do a basic kit for $200, a fair amount of customization for around $275, and I can really get crazy for around $375. Otherwise, expect to pay a lot more for another manufacturers product. The Chinese are not interested in better quality control or even selling individual parts. I have spoken to the Chinese in regards to the RFY, the name of the game for them is lowest price possible and the biggest volume possible, that means lowest machine costs, cheap materials, and as little labor as possible. As a result, the RFY has to be rebuilt if you expect a quality shock. The design however is decent enough, and is in fact a close copy to a name brand design internally (not snowmobile, that’s complete B.S.). I attempted to have the Chinese manufacture a design of my own. Unless I was going to sell 100,000 of them, they aren’t interested.
My CL CompTech package will cost more than the RFY setup, but it will also be of a much higher quality. And asides from some of the o-rings and seals, it will be manufactured 100% in the USA. I may however outsource my pistons at some point, piston designs can be extremely technical, and 5 axis machining here gets very expensive. My package should (hopefully) be significantly less expensive than the gas separated (reservoir) designs by Gazi, Works, ReceTech. How can I do this? I will not be selling through a middle man, sales will always be direct. I also control the manufacture top to bottom, in fact, I will be the machine operator, the assembly line, and shipping center. The guy who I have contracted my machine time (lathe and mill) from looked at me like I was crazy when he realized what my margins are, but direct to consumer allows me to do this. Moreover, I won’t be doing an emulsion shock. I dislike emulsion shocks, they are “more artful” to tune, generally they don’t work as well, and the cost savings are very little with regards to manufacturing. Emulsion shocks needs to go away as far as I’m concerned. Should you wish to hide the reservoir, making it remote will be an option, though it will add to the price. My CL CompTech package will be built custom for each customer, there will not be a generic model that sits on the shelf. That means custom valving, length, mounting, and spring rate. Finally, I plan to offer service plans. These plans aren’t necessarily geared for reliability purposes as I believe the package will only need serviced maybe every two or three years. Instead it will be geared towards those who want to work on suspension setup. The service plan will be a reduced cost (per rebuild) option for somebody who wants to re-valve multiple times and really fine tune their setup. Additionally, seal kits and shim packages will be available, the shock is fully (and easily) rebuildable. Rebuilds by me will be fairly priced, far less than other many other companies charge.
Feel free to quote the above info on the forum if you wish.
I will pass on the info Chris, I am excited to see what you come up with.
How is the progress on the new shocks your designing?
I making very good progress. I am getting very close to being finished with the drawings/model which means I will be in position to produce some prototype parts soon.
I decided I want to do as much of the work as possible in house (on my machine in my shop). As a result I decided to convert my milling machine to CNC. This has slowed me down a fair amount in the short term, but in the long run I should be able to make most of the parts myself. I will need to use my friends CNC Lathe (which was the plan from the beginning) to make a few of the parts, but all the milling will be done on my machine instead of my friends now.
Here’s a screen shot from my nearly complete model. I didn’t add lower attachment or spherical bearings. Some of the details are of course yet to be ironed out. But I am fairly happy with this model. It is the 4th variant, and has come a very long way from where it was 6 weeks ago.
I’ll be posting a few updates soon. Mostly with regards to the conversion of mill, then soon (hopefully) some prototype parts.