Let me begin this by saying my first deck was a TH Chicken Head Pig in the early 80's. I am now 42 years old and have recently started skating again. I have been a loyal PP buyer since I was a kid and even now. Not exclusive, but most of my board then and now are PP or homemade ones. I appreciate and applaud Mr. Powell for keeping his manufacturing in the United States ( especially in California ). I am also a manufacturer ( though on a much smaller scale ) and know the costs involved in doing this. Now, down to brass tacks. PP, you are missing the damn boat on gaining market share back with the young folks. Every single time I go to the skate park, I bring shaped decks with modern concaves and kicknoses that are 9" + and around 32" long. Every single time the kids want to skate them, so I started bringing 2-3 at a time. They skate them for hours and love them. They consistently talk about how smooth the board is, how much faster they can go ( I use 149 - 169 trucks with 60mm wheels and Bones Reds ) and how they love the shape. They don't seem to care at all that they can't skate switch ( how many really do ) or might have more issues with nose based ollie tricks. I will then ask to see their boards and lay it on one of my decks ( especially the Tree trimmer ). They freak when they see their popsicle decks are barely any different size - wise ( in a good way ). I have had ten or more kids ask me about Welcome Decks and they want one because they have cool shapes. Welcome is a new company that has nothing on PP. But, PP has decided to let a company like Welcome take even more of the market share that PP should be courting. PP had the best riders, shapes and graphics of any company in the 80's. Kid like those post - pig shapes ( let's just call them Chin shapes ). Why are you not making what folks want? I will give you an example. The Slappy decks are a totally waste of time. Without a kicknose and modern concave, they might as well be a 2 x 6 with metal skate wheels on them to a skater in his teens. Granted, the graphics are very cool and they have a cool shape, but once again the boat was missed with the concave and kicknose.
Let's move on and discuss riders. I will not pretend I know the in's and out's of getting someone like Lance Mountain, who skates for another company, to sign off on a deck from PP. So, lets attack this issue with two ideas. 1) Get Lance to sign off on a LM Future Primitive graphic and basic shape, but with modern concave and kicknose? 2) If #1
is not realistic for reasons I am not privy to, why not take the basic shape of the LM Future Primitive graphic ( like the one's you put out on a larger popsicle board last year ), and produce them on a modern board with the basic shape of the LM Future Primitive deck? The same can be said of the McGill snakeskin, the original Cab " Ban this Dragon " , the spoon nosed Skull and Sword with the ribs on the graphic, TH Spoon nosed decks, etc.
Let's talk about run numbers. If you still think that the ideas I have put forward are risky, try this. Put out two decks in the next 120 days with old school " Chin " shapes, but with PP graphics ( no riders that are not currently on the PP roster ) and modern concave and kicknose. Try approx. 9"+ x 32" sizes with dual bolt holes for old and new school trucks. Make the wheelbase 15" or more. Make them limited runs of 1,000 decks and market them prior to release on Skateone and to the other big online retailers. I will eat my Bones t-shirt if they are not sold out the first 30 days of release. If you really want to kick - ass, get Cab to sign off on the original Chinese dragon vert board shape with K15 concave and kicknose with those original graphics and McGill to do the same with his snakeskin model. It would be a license to print money. I would bet the pre - sales would easily eat up 50% of a run of 1,000.
As a long time PP customer, I am begging you folks to please start thinking outside the box while also leveraging your past ( and our love of PP from the 80's ). No more pig board reissues ( unless they have modern concave and kicknose ), no more slappys. Just shaped boards of classic shapes with modern kicknose and concave or the popsicle decks for those who like them. If you would like to contact me regarding this letter, please email me at email@example.com. Best Regards, Dale Schultz.