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View Full Version : Why don't I see more Zeagle gear around?



microbe boy
06-26-2009, 14:28
Here is a simple question, one that I've struggled with for some time now. If zeagle makes great stuff, why don't I see more (or for that matter any) people using it?

Now, just to make sure everyone knows where I'm coming from, I finally broke down and decided to pick up a complete zeagle package from ST and will be ordering it this weekend. I've made my decision based on first hand use of the gear and some lengthy discussions with Zeagle sales reps, performing in depth comparisons to every other manufacturer out there etc.... after all of this, I must say that Zeagle gear is some of the best in quality, design, price I've been able to find, and I'm not easy to impress.


I see a lot of zeagle owners on the forum here so I know you all exist (or do you???) so back to my original question - why don't I see more Zeagle equipment users???

I'm in San Diego now, was in Maryland until the end of last year, and spent a lot of time in Florida at my inlaws house. These are the areas I dive (spent some time in the Bahamas) and I've never seen anyone using any zeagle product (not even in Florida and that is their home base...)

Whats up? Am I just hanging out with the wrong divers or something???

DOWNDEEP73
06-26-2009, 14:49
I had a Zeagle 911 until last fall. Now I dive with a Zeagle SS Back plate and the 35lb. scout wing. I love it.

FishFood
06-26-2009, 14:55
What part of Florida? Seems to be a decent amount of Zeagle products in the panhandle, as well as lower Alabama. In fact I recently noticed my LDS replaced the Black Diamond with one of the Zeagle BC's as the main BC they carry.

openhelix
06-26-2009, 14:58
Holy big picture batman!!

I'm another Zeagle guy out here in CA. 400+ miles north of you though Microbe. I dive a Ranger LTD, flatHead 7 reg and Octo-Z. Love it so far!

I think Zeagle has a smaller dealer network than some of the bigger names (like ScubaPro) and less requirements for keeping the full line in-stock in the shop. I think most people go into their LDS and buy what's there and looks shiny/pretty/on-sale. The people that have and use Zeagle gear, for the most part, seem like a very happy and loyal bunch!

DMWiz
06-26-2009, 15:02
I see lots of Zeagle owners down here in SoFLA! Dunno what to tell ya.

Splitlip
06-26-2009, 15:02
SE Florida(Palm Beach County).

Most locals use USD or Scubapro regs. Supplied in our LDS's and supported world wide. Zeagles are here as well in some of the shops, but the older guys like the ones on which they cut their teeth in addition to the availability of service support. USD and/or Scubapro is in every local shop I patronize.

BCD jackets, Seaquest and Scubapro are king and queen. See above. An occasional Oceanic or DR Transpac show up.

What I am seeing however is a whole bunch of Zeagle BCD's. People who want a back inflate jacket, wisely, seek out Zeagle. On the flip side, people afraid of back inflate, don't have any choice when it comes to Zeagle.

MSilvia
06-26-2009, 15:03
Zeagle does have a smaller dealer network than some of the bigger names, but I have no idea why you don't see it. I've never owned any myself, but I see tons of it.

microbe boy
06-26-2009, 15:06
FishFood; In florida I spend most of my time in the Keys or around Ft Lauderdale/Miami area. I've never been to the panhandle. Will have to try next time I'm down that way.

openhelix; your probably right, its more about what is shiny and right in peoples faces at most dive shops.

I know this has been discussed in the forum many times before, but you don't even see much of zeagle in the major scuba mags.

When I mention zeagle to people, most people ask me if I'm a tech diver... and I only dive rec stuff, so I'm wondering if that is why I don't see more zeagle gear out there.

Splitlip
06-26-2009, 15:14
FishFood; In florida I spend most of my time in the Keys or around Ft Lauderdale/Miami area. I've never been to the panhandle. Will have to try next time I'm down that way.

openhelix; your probably right, its more about what is shiny and right in peoples faces at most dive shops.

I know this has been discussed in the forum many times before, but you don't even see much of zeagle in the major scuba mags.

When I mention zeagle to people, most people ask me if I'm a tech diver... and I only dive rec stuff, so I'm wondering if that is why I don't see more zeagle gear out there.
LOL.Zeagle=back inflate~technical. :smiley36:

Keys doesn't count in my observation. The charters are all tourists. You will seldom see a local diver if you are visiting (except in the bars or unloading his catch). :)

7349
06-26-2009, 23:41
Lot of Zeagle owners in oklahoma.

Darthwader
06-27-2009, 08:30
Here is a simple question, one that I've struggled with for some time now. If zeagle makes great stuff, why don't I see more (or for that matter any) people using it?

Now, just to make sure everyone knows where I'm coming from, I finally broke down and decided to pick up a complete zeagle package from ST and will be ordering it this weekend. I've made my decision based on first hand use of the gear and some lengthy discussions with Zeagle sales reps, performing in depth comparisons to every other manufacturer out there etc.... after all of this, I must say that Zeagle gear is some of the best in quality, design, price I've been able to find, and I'm not easy to impress.


I see a lot of zeagle owners on the forum here so I know you all exist (or do you???) so back to my original question - why don't I see more Zeagle equipment users???

I'm in San Diego now, was in Maryland until the end of last year, and spent a lot of time in Florida at my inlaws house. These are the areas I dive (spent some time in the Bahamas) and I've never seen anyone using any zeagle product (not even in Florida and that is their home base...)

Whats up? Am I just hanging out with the wrong divers or something???
I think it's all about circulation. the shops up here in Northen Mi. (my inlaws live in SD though) there's a lot of Scubapro and Sherwood. I wanted a Zeagle Ranger when I started but got talked into an OMS comfort harness.

JCM
06-27-2009, 10:41
I'm sure that there acquisition of Pinnacle should help to expand their dealer network quite a bit. More shops in the area have Pinnacle than Zeagle.

Splitlip
06-27-2009, 15:24
I'm sure that there acquisition of Pinnacle should help to expand their dealer network quite a bit.

I did not know that. Great news. Zeagle's buisness model + Pinnacle ~:smiley20:

ScubaToys Larry
06-27-2009, 18:06
I did not know that. Great news. Zeagle's buisness model + Pinnacle ~:smiley20:

http://forum.scubatoys.com/zeagle/24278-zeagle-systems-acquires-pinnacle-aquatics.html

chicken
06-27-2009, 19:54
I'm taking a rescue class through Atlanta Scuba this weekend. They only carry Sherwood and Scuba Pro, three of us are proudly sporting Zeagle Gear. I see a lot of Zeagle here in Georgia and could not be happier with mine.

clayhwalker
06-27-2009, 20:22
I am a proud Zeagle owner from Missouri. I agree that when I tell people I use Zeagle the next comment is "So your a tech diver". I dive twin DS-Vs on my doubles and old Apeks/Zeagle regs on my stages, and a Penicle Dry suit (now im all Zeagle:smiley20:). Due to the old affiliation of Zeagle and Apeks they are commonly associated with tech diving. I am amazed a the quality for the price. I have compared my Zeagle DS-V to an Apeks DST at 160' and couldn't tell the difference. In my opinion Zeagle is as good as the equipment 50%-100% more expensive.

cbope
06-28-2009, 11:00
My 2 cents: The best quality products do not always = the top in sales, market penetration or visibility. Sometimes the best quality product in a given market is from a less well known brand, because it is supported by a good, reputable and caring manufacturer who supports their customers. A manufacturer who has not sold-off their manufacturing to the lowest bidder in China (or other far east country).

I buy and use Zeagle because I know the company makes some of the best products on the market and they care about their customers. It's also quite typical that as a company grows larger they will care less and less about the customer and more about profit margins and market penetration. Thankfully Zeagle hasn't sold-out yet...

I know this from first hand experience and I work in marketing... :smiley36:

Coastie6
06-28-2009, 18:34
Saw quite a bit when we lived in S. Florida. Don't see much here in Missouri, but we just added 3 more Zeagle user to Missouri last week!

Medicdan
06-28-2009, 23:23
Zeagle user here in Iowa!

DMWiz
06-29-2009, 18:28
I have compared my Zeagle DS-V to an Apeks DST at 160' and couldn't tell the difference. In my opinion Zeagle is as good as the equipment 50%-100% more expensive.

I couldn't agree more, I own both Apeks DSTs and Zeagles DS-V and I would be hard pressed to tell which I'm using at any given time. Yet I paid half the Apeks cost for the Zeagles.:smiley20:

keyshunter
06-30-2009, 08:50
Zeagle is a much smaller company than any of the big 4--Scubapro, Aqualung, Oceanic, Mares. It therefore stands to reason that one would see less of their gear in use. In addition, for years, they were mostly noted for quality bc's, although their rebadged Apeks regs were top drawer. When AL's parent company bought Apeks, circa 2000, it is commendable that Zeagle chose to make their own reg, rather than go with a me too oem. Their regs are close copies of the Apeks, with a few small design changes, and afaik are built in their plant in Fl. The folks at Zeagle are savvy enough to know that in order to compete against the big boys, customer service must be exceptional, and they seem to be delivering on this.

ScottZeagle
06-30-2009, 10:37
We just try and do our best, and treat customers like we would like to be treated...

It's not a "secret formula"...it's more like common sense.

As for the original question, I think it depends on where you go, and where you dive. There is a lot of Zeagle gear in Florida, and thanks to the internet and internet forums there is a lot more of a presence worldwide. We are not a big corporation like ScubaPro, Aqualung, etc. so we have tried to take a more grass roots approach to marketing, and to try and deliver exceptional customer service instead of throwing fistfulls of money at magazine ads, etc.

At the end of the day, I can way more about what consumers say about our company and products!!!!

Thanks,

Scott

navyhmc
06-30-2009, 15:00
Not only a good product(s), but Scott posts here. That's good business!!!!

neogeo
07-10-2009, 13:34
I'm going to be the pround owner of a N2ition 3! :D

navyhmc
07-10-2009, 14:22
I've thought about the N3 as well. Lokks pretty nice especially since it's a 3-gas comp. It's on my shopping list, along with a can light, bottom timer and Dry Suit.

fisheater
07-10-2009, 15:56
I agree that there's not a whole lot of Zeagle products seen here in California.

But look on the bright side. Whenever you see a diver with Zeagle gear, you know that they're interested in quality gear and went to some effort to get it.

neugierig
07-11-2009, 06:19
i've only seen a zeagle once here in the philippines. back in the US they were more common. but not as common as other brands.

i don't own a zeagle, but i do wish i heard of them before i bought my gear. i would have gotten the flathead or a brigade.

Crimediver
07-11-2009, 12:24
I have a very old Ranger/Tech hybrid that is going strong after about 1000 dives. Faded some from pool work but rugged. Also have a Ranger LTD and a 911. I also dive a Flathead 6 and have some other Zeagle stuff. Zeagle backs up their gear and gives excellent customer service. I see a lot of them in VA. I tend to dive a BP/W more regularly but i believe the Zeagle gear will outlast me.

thagar
07-12-2009, 21:33
I have the Zeagle Brigade from ST. I chose Zeagle because my instructor has a Zeagle Ranger as well as another friend of mine. I live near Baltimore and my LDS just started carring Zeagle products.

Diver Kat
07-12-2009, 23:03
We've been a Zeagle household for nearly seven years now ... I have a Zena and hubby has an Escape, as well as a brand new Stiletto (which he broke in on our Florida trip and loves!) And we both have the Octo-Z. Around Austin TX a few of the dealers carry Zeagle, but it was the on-line reviews and raves that got us interested in Zeagle in the first place. Since then, we've experienced their terrific customer service first hand, as well as the quality of the product. They may not be as big as the BIG guys, but what they do, they do right! When (and if!) I ever need a new BC, it will be real hard to look at anything but a Zeagle.

The only complaint I've ever heard - and it's more a funny than a bad - we were talking to the manager at our LDS about Zeagle, and the biggest complaint he gets are from guys that try on the Zena not realizing it's for women. The love the comfort and the fit .... that is until they're told it's for the ladies! (Then they freak a bit!) He said if Zeagle could just make a men's Zena it would be great! Apparently the Zeus is a bit too minimalist, they like the Zena's vest. (So Scott, if you're listening - just make a Zena with a camo vest, call it the Warrior or something, and you can get the guys to snap it up! :smiley36:)

tfd86
08-22-2009, 08:58
I had a Zeagle 911 until last fall. Now I dive with a Zeagle SS Back plate and the 35lb. scout wing. I love it.
I WAS WONDERING IF I COULD USE MY ESCAPE BLADDER ON A ZEAGLE BP. iS YOURS A COMMON SETUP OR DID IT TAKE YOU A WHILE TO PUT IT TOGETHER OVER USING OXYCHEQ WING WITH BACKPLATE?

Flatliner
08-22-2009, 09:20
I dive zeagle regs, as do several people I dive with. I think that the vast majority of dive shops cling to an outdated sales model that is afraid of the free market system (and therefore afraid to stock brands that consumers can price compare on). Therefore, the majority of newer divers and divers who don't get REALLY into diving stick with what the LDS stocks. Unfortunately, that isn't usually Zeagle.

Vlane
08-22-2009, 10:43
I've one other Zeagle BC here in Arkansas, but there's a good chance it came from out of state. I'm guessing most of their sales outside of Florida are from word of mouth, either way great products and I'll always stick up for them.

Debraw
08-22-2009, 14:23
I know for our area it was difficult to get Zeagle gear at just about any shop in the Metroplex but Scubatoys. It's great gear!

bigman241
01-04-2010, 19:02
I would guess it is the dealer network. I am also going zeagle on most stuff. I talked with the lds here he said he did not care for the zeagle bcs and regs. I asked why. He said he did not know enough about them to carry it and felt oceanic had a line just as good. I got a problem with I do not like it but know nothing about said company. Though I think oceanic has a great line how could you say it is as good with out knowing both lines atlease somewhat.

keyshunter
01-05-2010, 05:51
Bigman,
Warranted or not, all shops have prejudices about gear brands. Some of these prejudices are based upon experience, some on hearsay, and some on some other factor. For example, I know one shop owner/tech who has been upset about the new Zeagle produced regs, claiming that Zeagle has bastardized the Apeks regs and introduced too much internal plastic. He is a very experienced diver and was previously a very strong supporter of the Zeagle/Apeks regs. And so it goes.

In my experience, my Zeagle breaths about as well as my Apeks, and my favorites which are Titan LX's. Probably only a machine could tell any appreciable difference. But, since I no longer dive deep (seldom venturing below 150 feet) there might be a noticeable difference on deep dives. I do most of my own service, and being of the "don't fix what's not broke" mindset, I do prefer to service the Titan firsts over either of the others. Perhaps that is because I have a lot more experience with Conshelf/Titans. Or perhaps it is because my Titans seem to go longer between services. The seconds for all 3 of the above mentioned reg brands are essentially identical, so I don't have a preference. But, as you can see, I have my prejudices too.

ssmdive
01-05-2010, 09:35
Zeagle has a good reputation from the people in the "know", but since not many shops seem to carry the brand many people don't buy them. There could be several factors that play into the popularity of a specific brand (And I am talking in general since I don't know the dive shop business, but I do have a degree in Marketing):

1. Zeagle does not make jacket BCD's. Most people learn on Jacket BCD's and therefore buy Jacket BCD's when they buy gear. Just like the old Cessna study that showed that people that learned in high wing planes bought high wing planes and people that learned in low wing planes bought low wing planes.

2. People often buy what the local shop has and what the local people use. With a smaller dealer network less people use the product and therefore less people are seen using the product.

In another hobby of mine I had a popular item and a part broke (Glock extractor). I found a guy that had a spare on him that he let me use and helped me install it. A buddy of mine had a much less popular item (CZ75) and had the same thing break before and no one knew how to fix it, or had the part.

In yet another hobby of mine (skydiving) the manufacturers found that sponsoring the local instructors was better than sponsoring the top teams. Students often look to their instructors when buying gear. How many instructors are diving Zeagle equipment?

3. Zeagle makes quality stuff. Most divers don't know the difference and go for price. Zeagle is often more expensive than what most divers would consider to be comparable items.

4. Zeagle's stuff is not "sexy". Look at Regs that are priced the same.

Zeagle Envoy Regulator reviews and discounts, Zeagle (http://www.scubatoys.com/store/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=ZeagleEnvoy)

Oceanic Alpha 8 Sport DVT reviews and discounts, Oceanic (http://www.scubatoys.com/store/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=OceanicAlpha8DVT)

Which one *looks* cooler. Like it or not, people are attracted to shiny objects.

5. Shops often carry what they make the most money on (now I have ZERO idea on the Scuba mark up..... So this is just a general principal discussion). I have a buddy that owns a Radio Controlled hobby shop. One of the popular brands costs him 400 to buy and the market price is 440.00. Another equally good and popular brand costs him 320.00 to stock and he can sell for 420.00

So on one he makes 40 dollars and on the other he makes 100 dollars. Which one would you try to sell more of?

Zeagles popularity level is not a reflection of its products, but of it's marketing.

For people that know how good the product is, looks don't count. But for people who don't, looks do count.

People tend to run in packs, and the market share of Zeagle is not as high as others.

People tend to stay with what they know, and Zeagle does not make student gear.

My opinions as a outsider looking in..... But an outsider with marketing exp. But I recognize that due to my marketing exp... I tend to see solutions that are marketing based.

ScottZeagle
01-05-2010, 13:38
Good points. We are probably more of a "grass roots" operation than the big guys...

We have tried to spend more on marketing in the past year or so, with the 30th anniversary and the acquisition of Pinnacle, and in a market that is considered down, we are still producing products to fill orders, so I take that as a good sign.

One reason I am so fond of Larry is that we essentially took similar paths to achieve some success. We were some of the first people to get active in the online forums and answer questions about Zeagle gear and Scuba Toys dive shop.

We both bent over backwards to make sure that our customers were taken care of and happy with the products they recieved, often at our own expense.

We spent hours and hours on ScubaBoard building long lasting relationships with actual divers and the people who support us.

Long before there were advertisements and lots of manufacturers on the internet forums, Larry and I were there....making it happen....grass roots style!!!

:)

oddbod
01-07-2010, 00:44
:smiley32::smiley31::smiley32:

mgdman
01-26-2010, 06:43
I live in northern IL and have Zegale regs and have had NO prob with them Two shops in my town dont carry it

j1j2j38
01-26-2010, 09:00
I don't have any zeagle stuff but my family all does and likes it, and I also like their products. I particularly like their computers.

reactive
01-26-2010, 16:01
Another satisfied Zeagle customer here! I have Zeagle regs and BC, and I really want the n2ition3 computer. I live in New Orleans, LA, but do most of my diving in the Florida pan handle. I have about 15 dives on my set, and I'm about to put on about 25 more in the next few months when I haul my rig over to Roatan!