When I joined this site 3 yrs ago it was a great source of helpful information and encouragement!Everybody was friendly,civl and helpful(unlike some of the other sites).We all are/were Martin owners who gather here to help and encourage one another in a sport we love.Hopefully we can regain that focus.
I don't know that we should expect a dazzling finish on our reasonably priced hunting bows...but I DO think we should expect a durable finish. There's got to be some method, some material that could be used that is both much more durable than the current offerings, and won't add an extreme price increase to the end product. I don't know what kind of finish they used on my '93 Cougar, something with a rough texture, but it still looks like new on the riser, and has only been rubbed/scratched/chipped away on the very tips of the limbs. Why aren't they still using THAT finish? I know, because they found a cheaper way. But have you ever noticed how companies find cheaper and cheaper ways to manufacture their goods...but the price to the consumer never goes down? It's all about padding the bottom line for the shareholders, while the overall quality of their product steadily decreases.
Seems to me a company should strive to make their products better, and better, which keeps customers coming back again and again, rather than making it with cheaper, and cheaper materials and methods, which generally causes the customer to seek alternatives once the quality reaches a certain low point. Profits can still be made, by increasing efficiency, selling at a higher volume, providing better value, and many other ways. As I've said before, it is no more expensive to make a product right, than it is to make wrong, and have to continually service it with warranty claims, calls to customer service, complaints, and a hit to the companies reputation.
But please don't misunderstand, it is not my intention to give negative criticism, and I am NOT saying Martin produces poor quality, shabby products. But maybe I am suggesting if there are certain areas that receive continuous customer attention...the current finishes, for example...that shouldn't necessarily be seen as all negative, but rather an OPPORTUNITY for the company to take notice, and address those concerns in whatever way it sees fit. I think any company with long-term vision would not shy away it's customer's issues, but rather seek out any and all feedback from those people that purchase it's products, because that's the only way they'll know if all the effort and expense they put in is paying off.
I think if this forum is perhaps changing in ways we believe might be for the worse, if we find ourselves being subjected to negative influences, or headed in a direction we would rather not, then we should seek productive ways to make things better, turn those negatives into positives, and get us turned around and back onto the good road! Let us be thankful for the things we DO have, and count our blessings, and for those things we have lost, or those that we lack, let us not mourn, but rejoice...as it gives us an opportunity to improve the situation, and make this place the way we want it to be!
Magnus, there is a slight flaw in your reasoning. Yes, manufacturers look to keep controlled costs down and so seek cheaper ways of making product, but, material prices don't go down, wages don't go down, energy prices don't go down, packaging materials, carriage, postage, phone bills, none of these go down. So in essence, the manufactures do pass on the savings they are making, in the form of smaller price increases.
"I just happened to stumble across it" on Ebay, it came from Lexington, KY. It was new never set up. Not a scratch, ding or anything. Just took it apart and re-lubed and cleaned it, and put new strings on her. I have been a great believer that there are bows specifically made for me, regardless of when or where and that they come to me in good time. It's a faith thing that I won't go to far into here.