We are opening deposits for batch 2 production of Evolution Wind and Surf masts soon. Thank you for your patience and support, we are so stoked on all the positive feedback the masts are getting, and can’t wait to build yours! With that in mind, we also wanted to give you some updates on our business since announcing Evolution Cedrus about a year ago, and delivering the sold out Launch Customer batch. It’s really amazing that within a year of announcing our intent to redesign Cedrus, we actually delivered not one but two entirely new masts. It’s been a super intense process, and we just got back from a much needed foiling trip to Baja. It was so rewarding to ride Evolution Wind ourselves, and our experience pretty much confirms the feedback others have given. Now, we’re just as excited to make masts as we are to ride them.

First, we asked you what you wanted in the next generation Cedrus and the answer was unanimous: Better performance at speed and longer glide at the expense of weight and price. We delivered: Cedrus is now confirmed as one of the lowest drag masts on the market, while retaining the stiffness and strength you expect. Furthermore, it is still the only fully universal mast and custom made for you down to the inch. We believe there is a ton of value in Cedrus masts, and our clients agree. Many of our launch customers for Evolution are still riding the Classic from as far back as 2018. While Cedrus has never been the cheapest, it has also never been the most expensive: but on annualized basis, we are confident that Cedrus has the lowest cost of ownership of any hydrofoil product on the market. We plan to keep it that way.

We learned a lot building our first batch of Evolution Masts for launch customers. Moving forward, we are updating our pricing to account for the significant investments we have made in our designs and operations. Because if we don’t make money, we go out of business, and that is not good for either of us. Especially those relying on us continually updating our fleet of adapters. We are extremely excited to bring manufacturing entirely in house. This is a huge move, and allows us to continue to control our quality, minimize waste, and look for opportunities of continuous improvement to either reduce costs or improve the product. Manufacturing is responsible for nearly twice the carbon footprint of transportation. Read that again. The more stuff we buy, the more stuff we break, the more carbon dioxide and waste we make. Our goal from day one has been to design and manufacture a mast that lasts a minimum of 5 years. Owning manufacturing is critical to that goal, and having a short supply chain helps. A universal mast that is forwards and backwards compatible with a long service life is the most responsible and sustainable thing we can do.

Providing customer service throughout the ordering and fulfillment process is very time consuming. We help clients choose their model and length, figure out adapters, and in some cases design new products for them. These hours are adding up, and we need to recover the costs of customer service. As a result, custom length masts will now be offered at a slight premium over standard lengths which will be available primarily through retail channels.

We are excited to be working more closely with our retail partners. We know some of you don’t like waiting 4 weeks for a custom mast. Maybe you have a last minute foil adventure coming up, maybe you just broke your old mast, or maybe you just want the newest gear first. Whatever your reason, we want to be able to deliver more quickly for those of you who don’t want to wait for a custom mast, and our retail partners are best suited for that. And if they don’t make money, they go out of business, so we need to ensure that our pricing reflects the additional value they bring to the table: holding inventory, customer support, demos, fast shipping, and being all-around awesome people to work with. By keeping some sales direct, and adding more sales through retail, we can keep our pricing more in-line with industry benchmarks despite being made in the USA where labor and operating costs are much higher than other parts of the world.

To simplify the product and further improve performance, mounts are now shimmed directly to the mast at our facility and not available separately. We have found over the years that 99% of customers ordered a mount with their mast, despite the modularity of the system enabling cost savings. A tighter fitting mount increases mast stiffness and reduces hardware loads and the potential for loosening. We also found that a-la-carte ordering of mounts created confusion. We’ve also eliminated tuttle and legacy board connections as the industry has converged around the 90mm wide track spacing. If we see enough demand for other mounts to cover the cost of production, we will consider it at that time.

Evolution adapter prices will retain a slight premium over classics. Some of you may note that there are aftermarket adapters for other brands’ masts on the market now, and many of them are actually more expensive than OEM Cedrus adapters. Keep in mind, all of our aluminum components are machined locally, and fully warrantied and supported. The new Evolution adapters are machined from 7075-T6 aluminum (50% stronger than 6061-T6) and feature press-fit 316 stainless pins. In general, we believe our Cedrus aluminum components are extremely cost competitive, and plan to keep it that way, to further increase the value of the mast. Titanium hardware is an additional upgrade. These bolts are made in the USA, custom PVD coated gold, for increased lubricity, corrosion resistance, and strength over our stainless hardware.

Ultimately we believe the product speaks for itself, and we shouldn’t need to explain our pricing. Anyone who’s ridden or even felt an Evolution Wind or Surf has immediately commented on the quality and design. We concluded that this pricing offers exceptional value, not just in the foil world, but in sporting goods in general. Look at the prices of hand shaped surfboards, custom bicycle frames, high end carbon fiber skis. We still offer our classic aluminum mast, which is also made in USA at custom lengths, for less than 1/3 the price a full Evolution kit. With a Cedrus mast, you can basically subtract $1,000 from future foil kits you want to try and ride.

Custom Evolution Masts can be ordered through a deposit format to cover “custom design services” with the remainder the declared value for international shipping. We hope to keep lead time around 4 weeks, but please understand that as we ramp production it will take some time to achieve our ultimate goal of something even shorter. Please order all adapters at the same time of your mast, to ensure we have them available to ship with your completed. Standard lengths Evolution Masts can be ordered through our retail partner, The Foil Shop, and we hope to help them build inventory for immediate shipment ASAP.

Thanks again for your patience and support. We’ve made significant investments in our business and are beyond committed to our clients and the Evolution lineup. But building things is incredibly challenging, and please understand that any delays are only the result of our continued focus on engineering excellence and quality, and that we will not rush anything out the door for money or social media clicks. If you missed out on this batch, don’t worry we’ll notify all subscribers of our newsletter as soon as the next batch opens. We may need to throttle orders for a bit until supply/demand stabilizes, as doing so ensures we don’t over-commit or run ourselves out of business as sadly many sporting goods companies have following the COVID recreation boom. We are in this for the long haul, and have been since we started Project Cedrus in 2016.

Sincerely, Kyle