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Old 08-01-2018, 08:12 PM   #31
CheckmateFever
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I totally agree on this. Checkmate's marketing is non-existent. I don't even know how they are surviving. It once was a company that mass produced a good quality boat and had a decent dealer network but now doesn't build many boats per year. I may be partially to blame....I've never purchased a new Checkmate and feel bad for that but I've never been financially secure enough to spend the money for a new boat. On the other hand, I feel that I've been a great spokesperson for the brand. I believe in the product, promote the name any time I can and love showing off my Checkmates.

Checkmate really needs a new Website. The Doug Smith stuff needs to go away; it left a bad taste and bad reputation for the brand. New boats, new graphics, and new interior pictures need to be uploaded. New language, maybe some option pricing and testimonials need to be added. Rigging a new Pulsare 2100 with a new Merc 300R and a Pulsare BRX with a Verado 400 should be focused on. The 2800 needs to come back to life with the new Merc powerplants and a center console based on the 2800 hull should be designed. The 24' Center Console is a beautiful boat but you never see it advertised!!?? Why?? I love Checkmate and want to see them succeed. There's good people working there and the founder's son (Kip) is still active.

Yes, I am in the same boat (no pun intended). I have never been in a financial situation that would allow me to buy a brand new Checkmate, at least not what i'd want to buy if i could (Convincor 270 with a blue Merc motor). I want Checkmate to succeed as well, but i will say if it means abandoning the go-fast boat market with wakeboard boats and C/C's, i honestly think id rather see them go out with their performance legacy in tact. I know, it's probably better to sell out and go with what the market trends are doing, but i'm not a sell out kinda guy myself. On another note, i was looking at Sunsations website, looks as tho they are now center console only, there is no mention anywhere about their go-fast offshore I/O hulls anywhere on their site!! To me that's really sad, I've always been a fan of Sunsations boats, the C/C's just look like fishing boats on steroids, i know they are extremely high quality boats, just not go-fast boats in my eyes. Yeah, i'm to much of a traditionalist i guess, lol.
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Old 08-01-2018, 08:50 PM   #32
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I don't think it should be viewed as selling out. You gotta change with the market. My business, for example, was built on a product called the Double-Tee. Specifically the Double-Tee insulated wall panel. But the market has changed and it's very rare for us to sell a building that has Double-Tee walls. The market has completely gone away from that product (towards flat wall panels with architectural finishes) so much, in fact, that the Precast Concrete Institute (PCI) completely removed the design guidance for Double Tee walls from their Design Manual. So, we became really, really good at what the market wanted. Flat walls. We didn't sell out, we adapted and flexed to the market conditions. As a result we grew. It's probably worth mentioning that we also got a lot better at marketing too. It was a ten year process for us, but we have a lot of organizational "mass" that has high inertia and took a little while to get it going in a different direction. It also took a sizable investment...

All things considered, I wish they'd do it. The market analysis can be done on a bar napkin with a crayon. I see more new Wake/Surf boats than anything else on the lake. Well, that's not true, pontoons sell like crazy...which is why Polaris just paid $850 million for Bennington. Anyway, I hope the folks who matter are reading this thread.
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Old 08-01-2018, 08:57 PM   #33
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Checkmate pontoons...now that would be cool.
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Old 08-01-2018, 10:45 PM   #34
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We are kind of assuming that Checkmate is not selling many boats, that may not be true. One thing I do know is the refurbishing part of the business is very busy.

While looking at buying that old Entertainer a few weeks back, I checked with the factory about dropping it off to get the seats done. Kip said they were too busy to take it, he said maybe in the Fall they would have room for it.

So maybe they are as busy building boats as they want to be?
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Old 08-02-2018, 11:00 AM   #35
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I think they should follow where the market is/goes.
I too have been unable to afford a new Checkmate, but time will tell if that could ever change. At this stage I've put 50% of a new 25' boat into my first 3 Checkmates!
By the time I may be able to afford a new one, I would love to be able to review a catalog of various Checkmate options - classic go fast and modern CC/deck/pontoon/wake ().
There is an opportunity to compete with the big names in CC and wake boats and under cut their exorbitant prices with proven performance hulls and adding tabs, technology or ballast tanks as necessary (clearly I know nothing about the tech/features in wakeboard boats - only referring to what I have seen as I pass them on their boat lifts in NJ waters! :-) ).

Checkmate deserve to fill that space in the market for performance hulls in the sub 30' range. Whether the deck is a CC, surf/wakeboat or deck/pontoon design, just make it happen!

I found myself helping a work colleague choose a boat that best fits his families needs recently and wished I could recommend a Checkmate. But they want a second hand boat big enough to carry 2 families (up to 8), up to 21', outboard, around $15k, and handle inshore waters (Jersey Shore/inner bays).
The Starliner would be too low for those waters (experience talking), 21 Pulsare would also not have enough comfortable space, so I found myself recommending a Hurricane. Had to choose form over function for them.

Imagine if Checkmate kept with the times and used their tried and tested hulls to support the newer deck layouts? We'd have a range of second hand options to consider now. It's never too late!

And for those of us who love the classic go fast look, we'll always be the cool cats at the party. ;-)

It's impressive that they are one of the oldest US performance boat manufacturers still in existence. They deserve to thrive - especially under Hustler as their parent company.
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Old 08-02-2018, 10:43 PM   #36
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I kind of agree, I'd like to see something new from Checkmate here too. Offer something unique. You are never going to be a straight out wake boarding boat, but why not be an all around pretty fun boat, while maintaining some high performance. Not everyone is going to be a semi-pro wakeboard/wake-surfer. Other brands understand this and build decent wake/surf boats with I/O drives. Offer an all round boat that does these things pretty well for the family and kids and can still rip down the river and you might have a unique value proposition. Maybe its not possible, who knows. At least make a boat with tons of seating, It doesn't have to go fast with 9 people, but it should with 2 or 3 and have the option for a party.

My perfect boat:

Looks Checkmate Cool
Does 60 MPH+
Seats 9
Light removable wake tower
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Old 08-05-2018, 12:26 PM   #37
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Not sure if it has been mentioned but the 2400BRX does come with an optional wake tower. Making it a sort of crossover speed/wake boat.
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Old 08-05-2018, 08:39 PM   #38
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Not sure if it has been mentioned but the 2400BRX does come with an optional wake tower. Making it a sort of crossover speed/wake boat.
It may come down to advertising and marketing then....for the 2400BRX and the 21 Pulsare.
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Old 08-07-2018, 10:52 PM   #39
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I would love to see them design a new boat... of any kind. But the last time I was at checkmate ( 2-3 months ago) they were slammed busy with their current line up and staff. Had a 28 I/o that was getting finished. And quite a few smaller outboard boats in the works.

I also wonder why they don't make a sport CC, but with the current market and updated bottom designs I don't the the CC croud would accept a "drivers boat" Any new CC would need a brand new hull design, fancy steps and a wider hull for more party room.

As far as wake board boats: I have no clue how they work but I imagine the hull is set up alot different too. I haven't ridden in any of the newer stuff but I'm thinking wakeboarding is done around 25mph. Does any of the checks even plain at that speed?

Reading back through this it sounds pretty negitive. It's not meant to. Just why I think they haven't done anything..... I want to see them succeed also!
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Old 08-12-2018, 03:48 AM   #40
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I would love to see them design a new boat... of any kind. But the last time I was at checkmate ( 2-3 months ago) they were slammed busy with their current line up and staff. Had a 28 I/o that was getting finished. And quite a few smaller outboard boats in the works.

I also wonder why they don't make a sport CC, but with the current market and updated bottom designs I don't the the CC croud would accept a "drivers boat" Any new CC would need a brand new hull design, fancy steps and a wider hull for more party room.

As far as wake board boats: I have no clue how they work but I imagine the hull is set up alot different too. I haven't ridden in any of the newer stuff but I'm thinking wakeboarding is done around 25mph. Does any of the checks even plain at that speed?

Reading back through this it sounds pretty negitive. It's not meant to. Just why I think they haven't done anything..... I want to see them succeed also!
Surfing is at 8-12 mph, to create a surf wake you don't plane out and do not want too or you lose the big wake. I don't know very much, but to really compete in the market the hull would require a clean sheet design. As an example instead of lifting strakes, they are reversed to pull the hull into the water and the transom angle is changed as well to help create the wake.
Big, Wide, Heavy and in some cases they run at a horrible angle plowing through the water, I've never been in one but have to think the driver has a huge challenge seeing where he is going with the bow that high in the air.
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