|Hi RKA Newsletter fans.
I got nothing this month, AGAIN!
My Mommy is reading this, and I have been promising to call her for a couple of weeks now she's still waiting.
The time has flown by and we have had so much “stuff” going on I have not had time to think about the Newsletter this month. And it's late already.
Some of you are waiting for product has I type and I just want to say THANK YOU SO SO much for hanging in there with us during the painful expansion we are doing. But what a great pain it is!
If you have been reading this year’s newsletters you can read the positive tone in my messages.
So let me just brief you on what has been going on this year and in particular the last month or so.
Our dealer base has doubled in the last 6 months so now more of you can touchy feely the RKA products out there and see just how cool and nice our products are before you purchase, if you had any doubts.
If your dealer does not carry RKA products KICK THEM in the ankle!
For the first quarter of this year our sales are way up. With that said hopefully you folks will understand the 30 day lead in time for almost everything! Our shelves are empty and we are peddling as fast as we can!
Understanding the lead time ….. Its 30 days but some of you may get your product much sooner……
We have to make things in an efficient way not just one tankbag for Joe, then one liner bag for Steve, and one seat bag for Sue. We are small and do not make thousands or even hundreds of items at a time. But we do have to manufacture in groups of 10 or so at a time and rotate through the product line. 10 GTL liners, 10 GTL tankbags, 10 GSA liners, 10 24.5 liter Tankbags and so on. So we are just like Arlo singing Alice’s Restaurant….
So we'll wait for it to come around on the guitar, here and sing it when it does. Here it comes.” ;-).
So if you are the first one to get caught at the stoplight RATS … it’s gonna be a wait. If you slipped through the yellow you’re IN! So please be patient and we’ll get product out as soon as we can!
We hired two new people before the move, a shipping person and an inside sales representative, now that we have the sewing machines positioned in a way they can all be used efficiently Kathy has hired two new seamstress this week and possibly another in the next week.
Now this creates even another issue which we are very proud of “Quality Control”. With new employees we have to be double careful in the learning process.
Most of you already know we have moved into a great new location with a small but beautiful show room. The walk in traffic has been fantastic! This unexpected traffic has also caused a slowdown in production so our inside sales representative has become a clerk in the show room ;-)
Production was shut down on Friday April 13th at 5:00 PM and RKA was moved into the new location and production started Monday the 16th without a heartbeat missed .........
Computer, Software from HELL
.......... Except the computer network from hell which had a heart attack right before our very eyes!!
I placed my old trusty “Gateway” laptop on Carolyn’s desk to use for dealer calls; I purchased a nice new HP laptop. Then within 24 hours Kathy’s tower died! So we purchased a new “LENOVO” I am not sure what Lenovo means but it must mean “computer tower from HELL! Nothing wanted to work!
Now while all this is going on we had updated our QuickBooks data base with 2012 software and also had to add two more work stations …. Do you folks have a clue has to how much each QuickBooks module costs!!! YIKES. So you can see we are spending money fast as it’s coming in.
Now the horror story of the un-installable KZillon dollar software! MY computer guy is out of town and we are dead in the water. So I call my backup man Bobby the fireman that is a geek! He saves the day and we are now back on line and the network is up and running …. THANK YOU Mr. Bobby!!
Visiting Best Friends
While all this is going on our dear friend Pete Tamblyn came to visit along with his partner Jackie. Pete knew we were under a lot of stress and did not ask too many questions. We turned them loose with my trusty R1200ST and they headed north, to the “Avenue of the Giants”, “The Lost Coast” and a few other adventures, on their return we put them in the car for a trip to “Yosemite”. We hope they had a great time and we did not have enough time to spend quality time with them but enough to fall in love with Jackie what a great couple they make.
If that name Pete Tamblyn rings a bell he does safety classes with Stayin Safe Motorcycle training programs and also edited the “Lawrence Grodsky” book “Stayin’ Safe” http://www.stayinsafe.com/index.php
Wine Country Century
Now to continue on this path of craziness in February my friend Andy and I signed up for the “Wine Country Centruy” a hundred mile bicycle ride on May 5th
Here is my report to the club list that I wrote Sunday morning May 6th ….
I want to tell you old folks about abandonment.
I had what I thought was a bad day Saturday but it was a forefeeling day also.
At 70 miles the dam was the end of my ride. I have NEVER abandoned anything in my life that I can remember.
Toward the end of West Dry Creek I decided it was over for me and at Dry Creek Road I called Kathy to come and pick me up at the Dam.
I turned 65 this year but I have always felt 35. I road raced motorcycles for 5 years against kids my daughters age. In 2005 I did the ½ Vineman and finished 12th in my age group. I do not like to give up or quit.
My friend and partner Andy decided to do his first Century. Kathy and I got them into bicycling again a few years ago and motivated them to ride, They now have a Tandem and Andy and I ride together often. We started a training plan for the WCC and I assumed it would be a no brainer and I would help Andy for his first century.
Last year at the end of July I hit a deer (8 point Buck actually) at 50 mph on my motorcycle while in Colorado on business. I broke two ribs and messed up my shoulder, wrist and some other issues. I was off the bicycle for some time (Sorry not has tuff has Levi and those guys ;-) )
We moved our business which took away one weekend of training, it rained when we had time to train and killed another weekend, Andy and I both had business issues that caused us to not ride. To make a long story short I told Andy we were fine and could get through this ok with what we had done. I was half right.
I felt I really let Andy down by abandoning the ride, Kathy came I hugged him and said get it done and walked away with my tail between my legs.
After a nice hot shower and a little nap I discovered I left my glasses in Andy’s car and we had to go over to their place to retrieve them. Well after a bottle of wine and a couple of Pizzas I started to feel a little better about myself, Andy completed the ride, Kathy told me I had ridden 70 miles which is what I had finally trained for (75 miles the Saturday before) and I did.So IF any of you older folks out there have had this happen to you I just want to say I AM NOT DONE and I hope you all feel the same way.
I had a better Saturday than I thought. Ride Safe.
Dealer Visits, Rallys
Kathy and I will do a little riding together!
So next month's schedule will start on Friday June 1st to visit BMW of Roseville 10:30 to 12:30 and then Cycle Specialties in Modesto from 2:30 to 4:30. Then ALL DAY Saturday with Al at BMW of Fresno on the 2nd.
Stop by and have a chance to win a RKA $200.00 Gift Certficate!!
Then on Saturday the 23rd of June I am going to do an Iron Butt Saddle Sore 1000 riding from home in Windsor to Avon Colorado 1131 miles. Tentatively leaving at midnight Saturday morning and arriving at the Christie Loge in Avon some time that evening about 18 to 20 hours.
Then I will be in Avon for the MSTA rally from the 24th to 27th
More on the schedule later.
I am running out of time here so quickly. We are discontinuing CONTOUR camera line and the Scalla Rider CARDO line.
Contour cameras fired my distributor Western Power Sports and descided to be their own distriubtor and basicley cut us off ,saying they had reached their limit on dealers! Duhhhhhh! Very very rude. More on that later
We have decided the SENA product out shines the Cardo product and we carry what we think is best again more on the later, except to say if you need Cardo or Contour parts and we have them, we'll make you a great deal. ;- )
Lastly we have the NEW 2012 SUMMIT 3.1 in stock at 189.99 and a new Vega NT200 ¾ helmet for $89.99 both great helmets and great deals.
I will be updating the RKA Summit page soon as I can.
OK .. Of to Santa Rosa BMW to see about testing Bluetooth devices on their K1600GTL and R1200RT ….. See ya all down the road sometime soon!!!
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