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Ashaway bird2

Discussion in 'Shuttlecock' started by dbswansea, May 30, 2013.

  1. dbswansea

    dbswansea Regular Member

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    Yuck, they're like missiles.

    I am a shuttle snob, I'm quite proud of it too :)
     
  2. Dave1011

    Dave1011 Regular Member

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    They haven't been too bad to be honest, I will keep looking for others to last until the end of the summer. I'm usually picky about shuttles, especially for matches but over the summer its less competitive so not a problem.
     
  3. Mark A

    Mark A Regular Member

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    Being a plastic-only club, we'd love to try these things... too dear at the moment.
     
  4. skid101

    skid101 Regular Member

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    I agree but they last longer than feathers, just not as long as other plastics, Mavis 2000 last a little longer but aint as good.
     
  5. InvincibleAjay

    InvincibleAjay Regular Member

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    I will try these soon, just couldn't understand the trial terms and conditions, I have asked them to sort that out.

    Kindest regards,

    -Ajay-

    Quote of the Day
    All progress is based upon a universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income.
     
  6. lightfeather

    lightfeather New Member

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    Hi,

    we ordered a tube of these few months ago. We usually play with Youhe S100 or Victor Master 2/3 in our club, so were testing these as a replacement for those.

    I think it's great that someone has finally tried to make a synthetic alternative for feather shuttlecocks - I don't understand why no-one has developed the plastic ball in decades. Unfortunately as much as I wanted these to be great and was finally hoping to find a true alternative for feather - these were really not a realistic alternative for feather shuttlecocks.

    With Bird2 they've done some good development when it comes to the flight path of the ball and how it feels to hit, but in the end it is still an plastic ball that acts like one. I don't know how else to describe it. It's flies "too smoothly" and is too bouncy.

    We only played one round with Bird2 - people wanted to go back using feather - so I can't say much about how long it lasts, but it looked like new after one round.

    If I would play with plastic shuttlecocks these would definitely be my choice - and I really hope they will continue developing the ball. Maybe in the future they will get a version that really is an alternative for feather shuttlecocks.
     
  7. visor

    visor Regular Member

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    ^ It would be unfair to compare it to feathers, no? I don't think the manufacturer even designed it to replace feathers. More appropriate to compare to current plastics standard like Mavis 2000 and 300.
     
  8. dbswansea

    dbswansea Regular Member

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    It would be unfair, yes. But people are looking for a cost effective replacement for feathers. Ultimately that is the goal of all manufacturers.
     
  9. lightfeather

    lightfeather New Member

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  10. InvincibleAjay

    InvincibleAjay Regular Member

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    Even the designer Gordon said in his video, they wanted an alternative to feathers, plays like feathers but with better durability. So I don't think this comparison is unfair.

    He said he wanted to try and replicate a feather, their advertising says 'feather like trajectory' etc...

    Kindest regards,

    -Ajay-

    Quote of the Day
    People who get nostalgic about childhood were obviously never children.
     
    #130 InvincibleAjay, Jul 15, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2015
  11. visor

    visor Regular Member

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    Oh, oops... seems like he's set himself a lofty goal that is doomed to failure. Better to say it's the best plastic shuttle instead ...
     
  12. navigator7879

    navigator7879 New Member

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    Hi all,

    Played a couple of two-hour sessions with these, and I am really quite impressed. Yes, of course they're not as good as feathers, but I think they compare favourably to the Mavis 370 (our usual shuttle of choice). The two tone skirt is great for us, as we have a very suspect colour on one wall in the sports hall, and seems to offer enough rigidity to keep the shuttle flying straight, even when damaged. The longevity seems to be at least twice that of a 370, with a single shuttle lasting two hours (we're not Lee Chong Wei, but we all hit pretty hard). The flight shape is nice, and closer to a feather than the Mavis 2000 could manage. And it makes a better noise than the 370 does. All in all we like it, but it is a price hike and it will not suit everyone's tastes. Best bet, try it out. If you hate it, ditch it. But we are seriously considering using these from now on. They're better than the Mavis and cheaper than feathers :)

    Cheers,

    Brendan
     
  13. Gordon Willis

    Gordon Willis Regular Member

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    Thanks for the feedback; all very useful as we develop the new production line. Generally we are getting very good reports on durability but we have had a problem with the adhesive quite recently and that has highlighted some deficiencies in our qualification tests. This has resulted in some bases coming off and composite flights coming apart on a small batch. If you have experienced this please return them to whoever you bought them from and they will be replaced. We have made modifications to mouldings and the gluing process and any new stock should be reliable. We believe that Bird2 is now more durable than any other type of shuttle. However, we are a start-up business with limited resources at the moment and we will experience many trials in trying to scale up, so please bear with us.
    Re the perceived performance against feathers we get a wide range of reactions. People who have only used nylons take a while to get used to them as they don't ping off the racket as they are used to, but they often think feathers feel strange and ‘heavy’ for the same reason. People who have used feathers but play at a nylon club warm to them immediately as do feathers users who have got fed up with using cheaper feathers. They certainly don't feel or sound exactly like a feather, if you look closely at the organically grown structure of a feather it is obvious that no one will ever come close to replicating the structure economically. But we have had plenty of feather players admit that once they have used them for a while they forget that they are not feathers as they have adjusted to the sound and feel. I see Bird2 as a legitimate replacement for feathers because the all around technical performance is very similar to feathers and we have the measurements to demonstrate this. When I have the time I will get these accredited and publish them. Additionally they are more consistent in terms of speed, spin and direction than feathers and do not change during a rally or over a considerable period of time and these factors are significant.
    Shuttlecock design is wonderfully complex and difficult project and I still learn and discover things almost every day. I am continuing to develop enhancements and can't imagine ever stopping. The often heard refrain is 'I don't know why 'they' can't design a decent feather replacement'; - if anyone has a few hours to spare, I will explain. We will be bringing out some new developments next year but in high volume manufacture things take time and considerable expense, especially so as we are developing completely new processes and specialist equipment. This has taken eight years from concept to full production and is as good as it gets for now. Feathers prices will continue to escalate and they do some unpleasant things to geese in order to keep the price down; another outbreak of bird flu in China would stop supply altogether so I think Bird2 shuttles are worth taking seriously; they are a step change in design.

    Gordon
     
  14. visor

    visor Regular Member

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    Good to hear... now please start sending them over to North America... :)
     
  15. Gordon Willis

    Gordon Willis Regular Member

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    Will do; just waiting for confirmation that my French on the new tube label doesn't get me into trouble.

    Gordon
     
  16. angoo83

    angoo83 New Member

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    Alternative shuttles haven't been developed because the amount of money made from disposable feather shuttles is huge. Why would Yonex create a synthetic shuttle that could last 10x as long as a feather shuttle for the same price? They would lose so much money! The motivation for this kind of project has to come from an independent source that has nothing to lose, and thankfully Gordon has got the ball rolling.

    I'm waiting for the chance to try them out here in the USA!
     
  17. skid101

    skid101 Regular Member

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    I see these have now had a price hike up to £24.99! @Gordan, do you not think they maybe getting a little pricey now compared to feathers? You could buy 2 tubes of Ashaway 450 black for £3.00 more.
     
  18. Gordon Willis

    Gordon Willis Regular Member

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    Price

    We have tried to keep the price down as research suggested that people wouldn't pay top feather prices for a synthetic product. However we are an early stage company and have been unable to get loans to build the type of equipment we need get economies without me giving personal guarantees and, since just about everything I have got has gone into this so far, I can't do that anymore and I don't think I need to.
    In fact, at the moment, we are selling to three distinct groups; more discerning nylon using groups that feel that a small addition to the price of an evening’s play is worth it; clubs that have got fed up with cheaper feathers and get a big reduction in playing cost with an all around improvement in performance; coaches and tournament organisers for performance juniors who want a more feather like product at a sensible playing cost price. Those who have got used to Bird2 seem to be ok with the price increase although it will obviously deter some people. The present projection of growth in sales means we will be unable to meet demand with our present equipment so, to a degree, we need to ration by price. This will help us develop the business organically which will take longer but avoid getting to a vulnerable geared (leveraged) position. Frustrating for me at the moment as I want to get on with several new products and design improvements, but probably good long term.
    Gordon.
     
  19. El bob

    El bob New Member

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    Gordon

    Could you let us know what the current improvements are with the newest bird 2 shuttles, the packaging is new,so is the price.

    I have looked on all available sites and no information is available.
    I am a first division player that uses plastics at one club regularly. The improvements I will be particularly interested in is durability first then playability.
    The play or the bird2 is a great leap ahead when compared to any other plastic, and better than some cheaper feathersfeathers. - just needs some refinement with consideration to slice shots and net tumble.
    The durability is the big issue. When played on court with 4 good first division players in two hours we would expect to get through 2 Mavis 300s but unfortunately we have used 3 or 4 bird2 .
    If you could provide information on the newest updates it will be much appreciated.
     
  20. Gordon Willis

    Gordon Willis Regular Member

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    Feedback

    Thank you for the feedback. Most people report than the slice action is better than standard nylons but not as good as a feather and this as good as we can get at the moment. The tumble performance is a function of playability verses durability. Your comments confirm my thoughts that we are trying to satisfy two markets with same product and we should move towards a more durable version and a more playable version in parallel. We can do this to some degree with the present tooling.
    We are at a relatively low level of production and batch production causes greater variation in durability than we want. Some people report that they last longer than standard nylons and others less so. We think we have resolved this for the next moulding run and this should be more consistently durable.
    As discussed before, the price increase covers our present costs and helps build towards high volume tooling. With some automation and multi-impression mould tooling we will get the price back to £19/dozen. Bird3, a new enhanced more playable design, will be priced at £24/doz.
    Gordon.
     

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