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John Barresi

Who is your favorite kite shop at the moment?

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I have bought from a number of shops. Steve at Chico Kites is always very helpful, but he will be closing next year. I had a bad experience buying my first kite from a "very experienced" shop in Vegas, but I stuck with it and bought my next from North Wind Power out of Cleveland as well. He was very fast and helpful. My only beef was the picture listed on the bay was of a current Quantum and I got a NOS quantum. I was disappointed because I liked the B&W striped panel on the side of the sail, but the kite was perfect and has served me well. Kent at a Wind of Change has been awesome. I bought a kite from Kites and Things and couldn't believe that Jon actually took the time to talk to me for a while. The best part about the midwest shops is the delivery usually comes in 2 days std mail for me.

I would say most every shop that I have bought SLK, Dual, Power and parts from have been extremely hepful, always willing to give several minutes to talk and very, very quick. I would say that out of all of my numerous internet commerce purchases, the kite shops have been the most helpful and quickest to deliver. I have been satisfied every time, but one. I was at an IKE club fly last month and several people asked me about kites. I recommended a few of these kite shops by name and told the people specifically to call because I knew they would be helped extremely well and would get a good kite to learn on. All the more reason to help out and grow the sport.

I don't like to flame, but I think you can tell from my post where I had a bad experience. I don't think I'm the only one, but there are many excellent shops I have been to that I haven't listed that serve many people very well. I choose to deal with them and stay off the bay. Too many good people need the business and are so willing to give excellent service. I love excellent service and spread the word whenever I can and I try to give the same to my customers (different industry).

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I have just started with kitting and have order my first proper kite and found that the cheapest was Bestcovery so that is were I ordered but as I have read more of the post l now must think again as u see its more than just saving a few bucks and more of supporting the kiting community so its a very good post for a Newby like me who can start to buy from kite shops than need the support so next time I will buy from recommend and not be so concerned with saving a few bucks but if i can save a few bucks all the better lol.

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Welcome to the forum Ian. ;)

We're all about supporting the kiting community, and I can guarantee you won't get knowledgable support and service from non-kite people.

A good place to start is our list of advertisers on the main KiteLife site, but end of the day, just take a look at any kite shop's "about us" page to get a feel for their passion, or call and speak with someone - you'll know pretty quick if you're being handled well. ;)

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I bought my first 3 kites from MacKite in Michigan... they have an AWESOME festival every year, They converted me from a gear head to a kite flyer. I think i even missed one of the BIG NAME guys up there last year,,, he's been know to hang out on the forum! :ani_victory: I actually got a great deal on a Rev from them also.

A Wind of Change has been Great for me also.I have 3 kites from them and a few line sets. Kent has been great and takes time to answer my NEWB questions. They also have a rewards type program that has helped out.

Lots of great companies out there but i figured the ones that help me need a plug

jim

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OSK "Ocean Shores Kites" They are amazing and very informative. They know their product inside and out. Great customer service and the only people I buy Kites from. They can and will fix anything. Whatever it takes to get you involved in the sport and up and flying. There are there for anybody!!!

Sent from my SGH-T989 using Tapatalk 2

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The only place I have ever dealt with is Kitty Hawk Kites in nags head. since Sept 5 ive spent over $2000 there and every time i go in there I feel VERY VERY unwelcome. Eric (reservation manager) told me in a very rude manner that i had gone through more kite parts in 2 1/2 months of flying than he has in a lifetime of flying! :kid_cussing: i hated his attitude so i called him out on it. I said "everytime i come in here you treat me like you dont want me here" his responce to that was...(not sry didnt mean to make u feel that way) but..."that's because im afraid im not gonna have the part you need. im gonna give you Rev's phone number so you can deal with them...we're just not gonna be able to keep a supply of parts for you" i bet he hasnt had as much fun as i have though :ani_yahoo:

John..feel free to verify that if you want. there # is 252-449-2210 And to top it off...I drive 2 hours to get there. And i STILL buy from them! I just refuse to let one JERK hold me down. My thoughts are...if i want to get to the level i plan on getting to...i had BETTER not be afraid to break em...and im not :devil: Ive only messed up 2 bridles, 3 spars and one supersonic sail :sign_oops: oh yeah...and the HQ Salsa i had to cut up to repair my supersonic :ani_giveup: . but...IT WAS FUN!!!!

Give Cath and Eliot at Flying Smiles a call. You won't get that treatment from them.

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Flying Smiles and A Wind of Change are my favorite shops.

We take a yearly vacation to Corolla Island and I end up spending a great deal of time at the Flying Smiles Shop (aka the Corolla Island Airheads Clubhouse). Cath and Eliot are fun, welcoming, and knowledgeable. They're fun to fly with too. Eliot and I share the distinction of being kite flying engineers, so he and I will sit and discuss the mechanics of kite flight and the impacts of different types of adjustments and why they work in a mechanical l sense. Figuring out how things work is what we engineers do.

A Wind of Change has easily the best kite shop website I've seen. Kent and Daelyn know how to provide excellent customer service, Kent has always been willing to answer my questions, and I'm sure I've asked some stupid questions. I fully intend to drop in whenever it is I make my first trip to Sin City. The flying out there sounds pretty great. I'm hoping that they maybe let me give buggying a try.

Into the Wind is good for the shear variety of products they sell, many under their own brand. Never tried their customer service, though so I can't comment on that.

What makes a good shop to me is salespeople/managers/owners who are actual flyers. A desire to help is a must. A good mix of products is nice.

A corporate, evil empire, only interested in the bottom line, employing mindless non flying drones, mega franchise kite shop, only hurts the flying community, because people have a bad experience when they try to get help, Or they leave with some twitchy, probably expensive kite that is above their skill level at the recommendation of the "expert" that was helping them, but really only cared about making the biggest sell possible. They end up trying to fly for half a day, decide they can't do it so its no fun, they pack it up and don't fly again. Whereas a small, personable shop would recommend a proper kite, not try to break their bank, and maybe even go out with them to the nearby flying spot for a little lesson to get them started.

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What makes a good shop to me is salespeople/managers/owners who are actual flyers. A desire to help is a must. A good mix of products is nice. A corporate, evil empire, only interested in the bottom line, employing mindless non flying drones, mega franchise kite shop, only hurts the flying community, because people have a bad experience when they try to get help, Or they leave with some twitchy, probably expensive kite that is above their skill level at the recommendation of the "expert" that was helping them, but really only cared about making the biggest sell possible. They end up trying to fly for half a day, decide they can't do it so its no fun, they pack it up and don't fly again. Whereas a small, personable shop would recommend a proper kite, not try to break their bank, and maybe even go out with them to the nearby flying spot for a little lesson to get them started.

Well put........... :gathering:

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Referenced above... Into the Wind. I've been dealing with them since the early 80s when I wandered into their store on Pearl St. while visiting my uncle in Boulder. That was my introduction to 'real' kites... I've bought dozens of things from them since (you know, that great catalog that comes out every year) and they have always come through, and dealt with any issues ASAP. The last thing I bought from them was my Kymera... I was hoping the UL and vented derivatives would be available by now... but I've been eyeing that new Manta this year !

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Besides ITW years ago, great store to wonder in and thanks to some advice on another thread, sent for there catalog, great for constant dreaming . Recently Lynn and Rich at Midwest kites are incredible, bought my last five kites from them, and again linking to another thread, they have been incredible with service, parts, intel, with rebuilding my poor E3, called me out of the blue to make sure the rebuild was going the right way . Needed one last piece, they put It in the mail even before the order was placed so I could finish the kite, I need to place another order ,, I owe them a kite order

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Yep, Lynn & Rich are tops. They are not just into selling, but also helping ! Nice experience that you had with them, I can tell :ani_victory:

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I like a wind of change kite shop for the helpful personal service, great prices, and large kite selection. I also like our local kite shop in ocean shores ( ocean shores kites ). funny peaple, great selection and good prices. :ani_victory: keep up the good work and thank you Eric

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Being new to the quads and Revs in particular I have done a good bit of business lately with A Wind of Change on line. Terrific people to deal with. Customer service is tops. Always there to answer your questions and their prices are competitive and kite selection is great.I can't say enough good about them. Give them a try. :):):):):) They rate 5 smiley faces!!!!!

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I realize this thread was started several years ago but I wanted to add my shout out for Kites Unlimited in Atlantic Beach, NC where Don and Jeri helped get me hooked and feed the addiction. Both are patient, helpful and experienced flyers. I have also received great help, support and customer service from Dave at Kites Unlimited on the Huntington Beach pier. I bought an SUL set up online but was traveling to the area so Dave held it and let me fly it a couple of hours before shipping it home. Dave is also very helpful in answering my many questions. East coast to west coast I've got great friends to deal with.

Marshall

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

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By the way, feel free to give your favorite kite shop some friendly needling if they're not current advertising on KiteLife. :)

We send a ton of business to the kite shops and have specifically stayed out of the direct retail side for that reason.

Would be a pretty simple matter to start up a shop of our own, but it's just not our style.

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http://www.kiteland.ca/Category.asp?cc=022827

Alex at Kiteland in Victoria BC Canada has sold me two kites now. The first was a Prism 4D for light winds a couple of years ago. When we were there at Christmas and he discovered that I was in the Rev world now and I was moaning about broken sticks in my learning curve, he convinced me that I needed a Flexfoil 1.7 Sting because it was quad line but had nothing to break - a trainer to save the Rev. Given the cost of replacing rods, even my partner could see the logic of this! So Alex is a great salesman who knows his kites (even though the store has to sell other things to stay afloat these days) and works with people to help them find what they need - or didn't even know they needed!

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my favorite is in knokke heist belgium remix kiteshop.be right on the beach the owner there took me out the first day and showed me a series of powerkites on the beach, ended up buying 2 powerkites 2 harnesses,mountain board, buggie, 4 stunt kites, lol. he was also a good salesman went for many a beer with him during his work hours. the other one which i have been so lucky to have had the oportunity to visit is the rev factory in san diego they were exceptionally nice and of course informative i now (when the new ones arrive lol) own 11 revs including the 2/4 blast

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my favorite is in knokke heist belgium remix kiteshop.be right on the beach the owner there took me out the first day and showed me a series of powerkites on the beach, ended up buying 2 powerkites 2 harnesses,mountain board, buggie, 4 stunt kites, lol. he was also a good salesman went for many a beer with him during his work hours. the other one which i have been so lucky to have had the oportunity to visit is the rev factory in san diego they were exceptionally nice and of course informative i now (when the new ones arrive lol) own 11 revs including the 2/4 blast 

That's awesome, not a lot of kite shops left who are in the position (or interested) to actually HELP a customer make that leap.

Kudos to them!

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my favorite is in knokke heist belgium remix kiteshop.be right on the beach the owner there took me out the first day and showed me a series of powerkites on the beach, ended up buying 2 powerkites 2 harnesses,mountain board, buggie, 4 stunt kites, lol. he was also a good salesman went for many a beer with him during his work hours. the other one which i have been so lucky to have had the oportunity to visit is the rev factory in san diego they were exceptionally nice and of course informative i now (when the new ones arrive lol) own 11 revs including the 2/4 blast

Chris make sure you get over to the Rev forum and add your revs to the global count

http://www.revkites.com/forum/topic/531-global-rev-count/page-98

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just did thanks for the info anyone have an actual tally

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The overall tally is in the first post of that thread. Or maybe bbailey can tell us more about that new system he is working on. ;)

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My neophyte database skills are really hurting my ideas on the new system. For now the first post has the numbers.

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