Second, they'll probably replace it. Never bad to have an extra avy shovel or two. If anything, it is a great thing to have in the trunk of your car. That is where one of mine reside. Used it to dig myself free a few times.
I WISH I could afford a ABS pack this season, all of our money is tied up in our move back to Utah. I think I'm gonna have to stick to my avalung for another season and hope for a more stable snowpack than the nightmare most of us experienced last year.
Any chance they come down in price further by this time next year?
Prices are dropping. You might see them for $100 less next year. Give it 3-5 years and I think most will settle into the $600-$700 range. Maybe BCA will get their packs under $400. Hard to say. The more people buy into them the more likely prices will drop. Of course beacons have been pretty stagnant at that $300 range for years now.
beacon prices have gone up, along with the tech - some of it useful, some of it just bells and whistles that shouldn't be on a beacon.
i'd love to see the prices come down on these... enough manufacturers are making them now that it tells me they're making $ at it, not just offering airbags to be one of the only ones doing it.
in europe and asia airbag tech is used in consumer motorcycle crash gear at the price of $400 a jacket... as it is snowboarders/skiers already typically pay on the order of 2-4 times the price of a backpack on a jacket - so why are all these packs so much $$$?
- they figure if you have the free time and $ to play in the snow then they can gouge our asses.
- bigger canisters/more air?
- continued r&d and hopefully lighter systems down the road...
I have no idea on the motorcycle jackets. I assume that they are not self deployed though. Sometimes small changes in tech make a big deal in price for the manufacturers and people on down the line.
Beacons are basically (real basic here) two way radios. The main difference is that two ways are always in receive mode until otherwise used. Beacons are always in transmit mode until otherwise used. Small change, big difference in price.
but its more than just that - as i'm sure you know. changes to beacon tech include the move from analog to digital, the advent of multiple burial specific screens and all the stuff that comes with multiburial algorithms or whatever voodoo, plus all the bullshit like digital inclinometers, thermometers, barometers, altimeters, built in bootwarmers and any other -meter you can think of that should be on your suunto not your beacon...
Oh I am not dismissing any of that. There is a lot of stuff, which I agree is not needed. The algorithms and such are software programming though. Yeah, it costs money to develop, but it's there is not a specific manufacturing cost. If say beacon manufacturers could by the same parts that two way radios use, the costs would go way down. As that stuffed in made in huge numbers. Having to have tweaked specialty parts certainly drives the costs up for everyone. I am over simplifying this of course.
I certainly just want a beacon to do one thing, be a beacon.