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boatme 10-26-2010 06:16 AM

Black Thunder - Just my opinion
I posted this on another thread but thought i would spur discussion with a new thread

I loved my Black Thunder, It is too bad they have only built very few boats in the past few years
The boat needs an update and a lot more thought to compete in the year 2011
I used to own a BT (new 1999 delivered end of summer 1998) and I sold BT's for a few years for the factory
Unfortunately the worst thing they ever did was to let Terry Sobo go to Nor Tech (Was one of the best things for Nor Tech)
There is no leadership and no forward thought process at BT any more. The styling has not been updated in many years and management does not have the ability to look outside the box
Do not get me wrong I love the boats but resting your entire business on two boat styles is not a good idea. We tried for years to get BT to redesign the 32 and put it out as a somewhat entry level boat and could not convince them to do it (sadly that time has probably passed now) Black Thunder had separated itself from the Miami to Key west Poker run many years ago and did their own run on that same week. I think that was the beginning of the end of their ability to market their boats. Segregating yourself from your largest potential customer base is just plain stupid. And having the ownership of BT make comment to me while standing on the docks in a negative fashion as they watched other boat manufactures taking out potential customers at 8 AM. He was making a derogatory remark about how early and stupid it was to see competitors doing demos at 8 am. This showed me how they did not understand the marketing process of the product.
I would love to see BT come back, it has a great nitch in the market place but they have to change their entire program in order to ever really see the light of day in the industry. In a time when sales are difficult and innovation and customer service is the only way to get the attention of a buyer for hundreds of thousands of dollars. BT is sadly lacking
This is a video I have posted before with some pictures and video of my past boats.
Starting at 2:25 is my BT pictures at the shop, then painted, then running Miami to Key West in 1998. Man i loved that boat!!!

Jassman 10-26-2010 07:25 AM

Marc, cool video's of the past..watched it twice... It is great to see how this sport has slowly revolved. The speed of the boats, no cats any where in site, to no jackets on the first video..
as to BT. You are correct, no business sence, no plan to evolve, poor attitude, and not the best looking boat in the industry with some design flaws that could have been rectified at an earlier stage to change the negativity of the co. They also had a niche, just couldnt capture it..and a few sales a year with poor customer service will not cut it in today's industry.

boatme 10-26-2010 07:35 AM

Jeff - You are right, If you notice i was the only one not wearing a life vest in the cigarette.(made me look like the true idiot in the boat) I am here to tell you I will not run any poker run that does not make wearing a life jacket mandatory now
and i will not run any boat at high speed without a vest on
You are correct the old mind set is not relevant anymore in the case of safety life jackets are nessesary to the sport

As far as BT, the niche was a good one ,they failed to capitalize on their popularity when they were on the top of the bubble. When the bubble burst they had nothing left, it is very sad

Jeff you going to KW this year ??

wrinkleface 10-26-2010 08:22 AM

WTF has Slobo done 4 NT??????????:party-smiley-004::evilb:

boatme 10-26-2010 08:24 AM

Originally Posted by wrinkleface (Post 3238736)
WTF has Slobo done 4 NT??????????:party-smiley-004::evilb:

You want the entire list ?? or just the top Ten ?? :lolhit:

Jupiter Sunsation 10-26-2010 08:32 AM

I think the market for big go fast boats is still there but unfortnately the Nortech 50 has stolen the crown for that category. The BT's haven't evolved from the stacked deck (the deck looked like it was 4-5 pieces stacked up above the rubrail) and the side by side engines with bravos.

By the time you redesigned the bottom, allowed for a staggered setup, fixed the deck you might as well just throw the whole design away and start fresh...

FuelinAround 10-26-2010 08:33 AM

I put up a link not to long ago about how lame their website it. Personally for me I think the black thunder is the boat I will retire in some day. The huge cuddy with a real bed almost makes it a yacht and with 525's I hear people are hitting 80's in the boat. But sadly as you have mentioned I wonder if the company will be around in 10 years for me to purchase from. I was browsing the Miami show list yesterday and noticed they were not onnthe list and was disappointed. They seem to be their own means to an end.

ROADHOG 10-26-2010 08:39 AM

Biggest mistake Terry made at Nortech was selling Wrink a BOAT!!!!!!

boatme 10-26-2010 08:43 AM

Originally Posted by ROADHOG (Post 3238753)
Biggest mistake Terry made at Nortech was selling Wrink a BOAT!!!!!!

Statment of the day :)

Tracy used to always call everyone "fella" I thought he should have named the Nor Tech "Fellaship"


LAriverratt 10-26-2010 08:48 AM

boatme... spoke to you about your old BT and looked at it a couple year ago....i think its back on the market..very nice BT!!!
I do like the BT's...even with the old look but they do need some interior updating...I think they still have their nitch too but sounds like they need some management restructuring/refocusing if they're still alive and kicking.

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