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Old 21 February 2019, 06:05   #1
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Aerotec - now discontinued!

Well the end of an era... word is that the Aerotec has been discontinued for good.

On something of a whim this morning I phoned round dealers wondering if anything had come of the Aerotec re-certification/redesign which was rumoured a year or so ago. Ours is five years old now and looking out at decent boating weather with a possibility of spare cash thought I'd investigate in case an upgrade could be justified.

As far as I can sort out from several sources there was some change in certification that needed the Aerotec to be re-tested to remain on the market. The problem was said to be due to internal size and floor shape the certification was reduced from 5 person to 3 person.... so Zodiac/Bombard deemed it easier to just stop production than try and make changes to achieve the 5 person result.

To be honest I've always though 3 persons ideal anyway... one on tiller... one on seat as central ballast.. and one smaller person as moveable ballast.

Great shame though. The Aerotec was always a niche SIB due to cost, small interior dimensions and sloping floor... and of course a few loved to hate it for no good reason... but for those such as ourselves who it suits perfectly it leaves a hole in the market.

This unavailability feeding back down the used market will perhaps make more sense in future to justify a full pro re-glue when needed.
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Old 21 February 2019, 10:32   #2
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If so for sure then sad news.

It's a crying shame that no-one has really innovated in the leisure SIB market since the HP drop stitch air floors came into production.

Bombard/Zodiac or whoever owns them now are as guilty as most and did nothing to update what is still IMHO the very best all round, all things considered 'performance' SIB available. The 'wrong' height transom they never bothered to fix is a prime example.

Many of us have tried various Hypalon, PVC, solid floor, air floor, flat floor, hardly a V floor SIBs but the 'actual deep V' of the Aerotec combined with the lightweight build makes it still the ideal typical UK conditions SIB.

New price is (was) still silly though.
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Old 21 February 2019, 14:09   #3
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I guess that the AKA range has taken over to some extent although the 3.8 with air floor, speed tubes and 500 MM tubes retailing at £5000 has certantly upped the price on the aerotec
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Old 22 February 2019, 08:16   #4
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A great shame but assume one positive is that it will improve used values
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Old 22 February 2019, 09:30   #5
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>>>New price is (was) still silly though

Thing is the Aerotec was a Zodiac/Bombard premium product. Apart from Zodiac's built down to a price cheaper models you had Aerotec around £2600 when last sold... Classic 3.8 £3400 and Futura 3.7 £4050. Even an Frib 3.6 would be £2995.

So actually given those examples it seems quite reasonable! Anyway no longer will we have to disagree over this as they're done now.

It will be interesting to see where it leaves their used prices as chrisjwallen says.
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Old 22 February 2019, 17:20   #6
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Be interesting to see if any lower cost manufacturers try to fill the gap, or perhaps someone like takacat who have the technical expertise and arenít ashamed of premium pricing can plug the gap.
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Old 22 February 2019, 17:37   #7
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Yep... I've always wondered why Honwave didn't have a go at about half the price... I mean a total copy not the T38. I'd have happily bought a Honwave Aerotek.
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Old 23 February 2019, 02:27   #8
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Me too - especially when you see the price of SUPs coming out of China using the exact same drop stitch tech. The volumes are huge compared to the amount of BATs made.
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Old 23 February 2019, 07:45   #9
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Hmm got me thinking. Get a used Honwave 35AE, junk the alloy floor, let in some extra floor fabric and wedge two SUP boards the length of the interior. Sorted.
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