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upnorth

News Flash G. Loomis to quit selling rod blanks

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I found this on another site and figured I would pass the info along. Not a good thing for the G. Loomis Rod Blank fans. If you are a G. Loomis fan, I would stock up before the the supply runs out.

Quote:
Tom,

Thanks for the note and the opportunity to set the record straight.

We ARE getting out of the blank business. It is not just a $ situation, but a capacity situation as well. The demand for G.Loomis rods combined with a relatively flat custom blank business is the basis for the decision. It wasn’t an easy one as we’ve been making blanks since we started here at G.Loomis.

We have a very efficient process & product flow here when we are building blanks for our finished rods. When we make the custom blanks, the front of the factory builds product while the rod end basically has to stop. Given that rods are over 95% of our business, there just isn’t an efficient way to put blanks through this facility on their own.

Our plan is to stop manufacturing blanks at the end of December and to be out of the blank business on January 1, 2010.

Thanks Tom. I know it won’t be a popular decision, but we have to move forward and our rod business is our most important asset. I appreciate your support in this decision.

Thanks,

BH

G.Loomis, Inc.

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It sounds like they are still going to manufacture the blanks for their rods, just not blanks for the custom rod building market. That kinda bites as there a lot of custom builders use G. Loomis blanks.

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Huh. It sounds like they are talking about stopping custom batches done to outside spec? I couldn't imagine that pulling a few blanks of their production rods for custom builders would force them to shut down their rod building operation.?

Didn't G. Loomis retire from the company last year?

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I am not sure what to make of it. I read it as they are going to continue to make their rods and not push out blanks to the custom builders. I tried to find some other press release on G.Loomis site but there is none.

If it messes with their normal production, it messes with their normal production, business is in business to make money. The author even noted this would be an none too popular decision.

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No big deal to me, never really liked the action of Loomis blanks myself.

This is the most official press release I have been able to dig up.

G.LOOMIS TO EXIT CUSTOM ROD BLANK BUSINESS BY THE END OF 2009

WOODLAND, Wash. USA - 4/09 -- Allowing it to focus its staff and manufacturing facilities on its globally expanding finished fishing rod business, G.Loomis has decided to exit custom rod blank production by the end of 2009, announces Bruce Holt, executive director at G.Loomis.

"This is a very difficult decision for all of us here at G.Loomis, especially since making custom rod blanks for steelhead anglers was how we got our start as a fishing tackle company back in the '80's," Holt said. "While we realize there's an avid following among custom rod makers for our blanks, the growth we've experienced on a worldwide basis for our finished rods - and especially our fly rods with both fly tackle dealers in the U.S. and abroad - makes this the right decision and direction for our business success in the future."

Making this announcement now allows our current rod blank customers plenty of lead-time to adjust inventories and make plans for their 2010 business in terms of yearly catalog and web site changes, Holt notes.

During this slowdown in the economy, Holt notes that G.Loomis has reinvested in quality training and production upgrades at its Woodland, Wash. facility, and will continue to strive for improvements in all areas of the company. "Our production plans include manufacturing custom rod blanks through the end of 2009, and then our complete focus will be on finished rods," said Holt. "Our efforts at the plant over the past few months and this decision to exit the custom blank business prepares us well for when the global economy rebounds."

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Oh well. They will probably jack the price of their blanks up in the mean time because they know there will be a big demand once the word gets out. I see them doing this and 5 years from now going back to selling them again.

Maybe I should buy some blanks now just in case. wink

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They sell Loomis, St. Croix, Rainshadow and a few more.

I build my Loomis rods / blanks at Thorne bros. I'll ask Lonnie when I go there Tues.

All I know, the last two years, loomis has cut down on some of the blanks available to customers.

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If you look at it from the G. Loomis side of things it makes sense. Only 5% of their sales comes from custom blanks. Their factory must be at near capacity since they have to shut down the assembly people to make blanks for customers. You know they wouldn't be doing it if it was going to lose money. IMO the new St. Croix blanks are right there anyways.

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There are more than a few good blank vendors out there. But I hate see another choice leaving the market. If it gets to be too small of a market the few that are left will be able to raise prices at will and that is not good for us consumers.

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Looks like I'll purchase a HSR 9000 this Summer and build it next Winter.

St. croix makes excellent blanks as well. I like my Legend Elite.

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Just got back from Thorne Bros. lonnie verified what everyone here has said. He said that they can get almost every blank that Loomis sells until the end of the year.

St. Croix is really expanding (good news).

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Thanks for verifying the report. But still is not good to see a vendor quit selling products we use. The competition makes everyone else a bit better.

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The bad thing is I wanted a complete set of rods for myself. In the Loomis IMX and two GLX's.

Going to have to build the remaining two rods on St. Croix legend Elites, or the new Legend Xtreme to finish. Currently, I have one Legend Elite that I built 3 years ago, and I've been very happy with it. They have a very nice 7'6" ML that I may build next year (unless I get a HSR 9000). They are getting in the blanks in the next week or so. Time to compare them side by side. The good thing about St. Croix Lonnie mentioned is they are expanding their blanks. Which is good for us all.

Hate to see Loomis go though.

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I always have thought that Loomis is over priced anyways. Dont get me wrong they have a few very nice rods but I feel the bang for the buck isnt there.

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I know that the St. Croix legend elite, legend xtreme, and the walleye tournament blanks, are every bit as good as the Loomis.

And best of all cheaper. Looks like I'll become a St. Croix guy now.

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I started on Loomis blanks, and then when Shimano bought them out, I switched over to St Croix. I also had the chance to get to go to the factory in Park Falls for a rod builder's convention. They run a class operation from the ceo on down. I have been since, and will be a st croix fan for life.

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Good to hear that about St. Croix. Looking forward to building a few.

There's just something about the charcoal/gray color on the Loomis IMX/GLX I like.

Going to take awhile getting use to the green color on the new Legend Elites and Legend Xtremes.

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Ya I agree. Im not for green, orange, pink, yellow or aqua rods either. Just a plain jane black rod with maybe a little color in the wrap is all I need or want.

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