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Brochure from Pionier Faltbootwerft

Date: 1950
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Nancy Jean Steele Bequest
Object Name: Brochure
Object No: ANMS0538[031]

User Terms

    • [Translated – sections 1 and 4] Pionier Post [Retailer Newsletter] 2/50 Bad Toelz February, 1950 Dear Retailer, In this edition we would again like to respond to a number of questions that arrived in our daily mail, and answer them in a general manner. Answering the questions in the Pionier Post will clearly save time and money for both you and ourselves. Please write to us in case you do not agree – we appreciate your comments. The active exchange of opinions combined with ongoing cooperation are essential for finding, and following, the path of success to our customers. 1. Construction Changes Over the past years, advancements in the construction of the collapsible boat have almost come to a halt. Even though our marketing paints a different picture, fundamental or revolutionary innovations to do with the construction of collapsible boats are not occurring and are not to be expected. The situation is comparable with that of the bicycle industry. Over the past years we have seen various attempts to improve the bicycle which we have been cherishing since the days of our youth, maintaining its form and reliability. Magazines highlighted as sensational novelties the replacement of the crank drive through levers, or lying on your stomach instead of sitting etc. However, none of those “epoch-making” innovations proved successful. Equally, the car industry demonstrates that a brand’s reputation does not depend on the churning out of cars of a new shape each year. The post-war models of the 170V Mercedes, for example, share the same exterior appearance they had before the war. Trust us: since the establishment of our shipyard 25 years ago, we have closely followed all experiments that attempted to construct the collapsible boat without using a rubber skin and a structural skeleton. Even attempts to attach the skeleton to the skin in a different way did not succeed. As a result, the established construction is only ever changed to a minor extent, and those changes are then greatly exaggerated. It is the same as if a car manufacturer were to advertise a differently shaped dashboard as a groundbreaking technical novelty. Do you think a customer, whose car was still in good working condition and still looked good, would reject his car just to buy the new dashboard with the new car around it? We believe people would not do that any more. And also consider all the disadvantages linked to the relatively minor benefits that come with advertising such highly acclaimed innovations! The well-known pattern of novelties or so-called new models emerging regularly each spring not only makes the market jittery but also has buyers holding back their orders until the very last minute, so that the shipyard is quite unnecessarily swamped by orders. That adversely affects short delivery times, as well as work precision and labour rationalisation. All the boats of the previous year become devalued for no real reason at all, be they stored in our shipyard or on your premises. It is hard to sell them, even at reduced prices and while sacrificing profits. Are we to unnecessarily turn the collapsible boat into a fashion article, and create end-of-season sales where you sell the articles for less than you paid for them? It is up to us to avoid such a development. All the customer wants is a good looking and practical boat of first-class quality. Let us not be the ones to make business go erratic! After all, we are both batting for the same team! We all want the boat, and hopefully all products, to become better and less expensive. However, that can only be achieved under steady and consistent working conditions. We freely admit that during the past year we did not always live up to the standards implied by our name and the well-known Pionier quality, and might not have met the expectations held by you and the customers. We do not intend to appease our conscience – everybody makes mistakes. However, as you will be aware, all products are only gradually reaching, or surpassing their former level of quality, regarding both materials used and processing. Please believe us, we are putting all our energy into doing what is humanly possible to address the material and processing issues. As a consequence we expect to be able to reduce prices at a later point in time. Therefore, you will not have to worry about any sudden or unexpected so-called improvements or variations in construction. However, you may be assured that we are consistently and steadily working at improving the quality of our existing models and products in order to ensure that the name PIONIER continues to be a reflection of the highest quality. 4. Boat Skin As you will know, no shipyard for collapsible boats produces its own rubber-based material for use as boat skin. That material comes from rubber manufacturing plants. However, there too, relevant facilities have been destroyed due to the war and many experienced workers are no longer there. In collaboration with rubber factories we have been trying very hard for quite some time to achieve a flawless skin, and we have made considerable progress. The rubber-based material produced today is comparable with pre-war materials. By carefully checking our material deliveries we do all we can to ensure that customers receive only perfect skins. However, it is not easy to achieve a product close to perfect when you are required to coordinate between weaving mills for the heavy-duty hemp core sailcloth, other weaving mills for the superposed nettle cloths as well as rubber factories for rubber coating. The work is painstaking and requires a great deal of correspondence, but you may rest assured: we have made a great deal of progress and we have succeeded.

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