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At what price point do you expect a weight matched kendama? (POLL)

Discussion in 'The Sesh' started by goenKendama, Aug 23, 2018.

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At what price point do you expect a weight balanced kendama?

  1. All kendama from major manufacturers regardless of price

  2. $20-$30 and up

  3. $31-$50 and up

  4. $51-$60 and up

  5. $61-$80 and up

  6. $81-$100 and up

  7. more than $100

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2016
    Location:
    Metro Manila, Philippines
    The most recent News post, Why Would Anyone Buy a $75 Kendama?, got me thinking. While it is only one aspect of a kendama it is one that you often hear a lot about; weight matching. (This doesn't necessarily cover the balance of the kendama or the predisposition toward lunar or slinger abilities though that is often a related concern.)

    So at what price point do you expect a weight matched kendama? We can't put up 2 question polls but I'd also be interested in another part of that question. What is the max difference you'd accept at a given price before you'd return the kendama or contact the manufacturer?


    For reference reading:
    WHY WEIGHT MATCH A KENDAMA?
    OFF WEIGHT KENDAMA?
    WORST WEIGHTS
    WEIGHT RELIEVING THE BASE CUP?
     
    Aug 23, 2018
    beglerijapan and htimSxelA like this.
  2. JordyM

    JordyM n00b

    Joined:
    May 11, 2018
    Location:
    Penticton BC, Canada
    I would expect that a kendama over 50$ upfront would be relatively matched, as in the tama would be as close as possible to the weight of the ken. I recently bought a Bonz pro mod and it was suprisingly quite good for weight. Personally i do not notice a big difference when playing an unmatched kendama but it is a good thing to have when putting down 60 or 70 bucks with shipping. And living in Canada, that's easily over 100$ cad
     
    Aug 23, 2018
    goenKendama likes this.
  3. Stuart Barron

    Stuart Barron Slayer

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2016
    Location:
    England
    I think between $30-$50 its reasonable to expect ken and tama to be within 8g. Most people can feel that sort of difference by hand. More expensive than that and I’d expect closer, and also for the sword and sarado to be within a couple of grams of each other too. Nothing stifles your feeling toward a kendama more than a badly balanced ken IMO.
     
    Aug 24, 2018
    JHard502710 and goenKendama like this.
  4. Sam Strohmyer

    Sam Strohmyer Slayer

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2017
    Depends on the amount produced IMO. I'd ever expect a product being turned out in the thousands to be perfect every time. We are working with wood, and variance occurs with every sample. Not every batch produced will allow for a 1:1 perfect weight match on every piece, if you sold them as such, you'd end up with an undisclosed amount of undesirable products every time.

    I'd rather be able to pay EXTRA for a weight request at any price range, even on natty beech. Just my opinion though.
     
    Aug 27, 2018
  5. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2016
    Location:
    Metro Manila, Philippines
    Good points. One of the additional expenses to any kind of detailed QC are the "throwaways," the costs of which have to be figured back into the price of the items that do make it for sale. There is also the man-hour costs to weigh each part and assemble matching sets.
     
    Aug 27, 2018
    ChrisPChicken and Sam Strohmyer like this.
  6. JHard502710

    JHard502710 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2018
    Location:
    Louisville, Ky
    just checked the weight on my craft Ash slim that I got on Bf. Well I weighed all my purchases immediately and recorded and just went back to my notes.. saw it had the worst weight match at 8.5grams out of everything I picked up. Luckily I got it on BF sale so it hit right around the 30-50$ price range and can’t be too upset by the 8.5 but I’ve heard people say that the Crafts should be closer weight matched due to smaller batches I thought.. and had I not gotten the sale it would have been a $70+ Kendama after shipping with a 8.5g mismatch
     
    Dec 15, 2018
  7. KeeganS

    KeeganS DS Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2016
    Location:
    Boise, Idaho
    Even with smaller batches like Crafts, Homegrowns, and GTs (not including the E1s), there are bound to be a small few in those batches that do not match up close enough to others in the batch.
    You could have 19 out of 20 Craft Slims that are well within 3 grams of each other and then the last one be 8 grams off ken heavy because it’d be just as bad or worse if the ken (or tama) from that 20th dama were paired up with any of the other pieces from the first 19 pairs.
     
    Dec 15, 2018
    JHard502710 likes this.
  8. JHard502710

    JHard502710 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2018
    Location:
    Louisville, Ky
    Heard that. Makes sense.. I honestly don’t think I’ve been playing long enough to notice the few gram difference in weight from Ken to tama. My first Sweets Custom Prime was a chocolate covered strawberry tama that was def10+ gr heavier than the ken, but I played it and was fine with it.
     
    Dec 15, 2018
  9. Pyromawn

    Pyromawn n00b

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2016
    Location:
    Switzerland
    Hey there kendama shredders,

    What are your experiences regarding quality control on lowpriced or middleclass kendamas?

    Especially when it comes down to lunar balance or weight ratio I got really dissapointed buying for example a Lyndon-Pro mod (20g heavy tama), dwestymod (bad lunar balance), 3 x gt-e1 (all with insanly bad lunar balance), Sol pastel (bad lunar balance), kendama isr big brother (bad lunar balance and 15g heavy tama) and so on.

    When I see kendama players on IG smacking the craziest inward lunar backflip or multi tap lines as it was nothing using the same kendamas I mentioned I'm starting to ask myself: do they have the same unbalanced kendamas i get or am i just a poor unlucky soul who has bad luck with quality control? ;-)

    the only super balanced kendamas i got where expensive ones like og gt stoddmod, mugens, kusa crafts and Terra's... Or og ozoras and tk16 masters...

    Do you feel me on this or are my expectations too high?

    Cheers from switzerland!
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
    Jun 12, 2019
  10. poncho151

    poncho151 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2017
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    It’s an unfortunate problem with mass produced kendamas and kind of a luck of the draw thing. Although, I personally have noticed that alot of the times I’ve used a discount code or buy something “on sale”, I’ve received what I would almost consider b-grade products. This may be a coincidence and certainly isn’t every company. I’m not gonna say specifically but it seems some companies use sales or discount purchases to dump off less desirable items and/or surplus stock.
    Now I know that’s getting away from the actual topic but I was wondering if you often use discount codes or only buy during sales since shipping is probably already expensive for you.
    I should also add that I’ve paid full price and gotten unbalanced and/or tama/Ken heavy damas too which goes back to the “luck of the draw”. Either way they aren’t cheap and it’s super disappointing to get a Kendama that you don’t like playing.
    With all that said, I mostly buy higher end kendamas these days because of the generally higher quality control.
     
    Jun 12, 2019
    Pyromawn likes this.
  11. Pyromawn

    Pyromawn n00b

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2016
    Location:
    Switzerland
    Your point with the sales and discount codes makes sence for me but I mostly paid full price when receiving offbalanced kendamas.
    It would be interesting to hear some insides from people working in kendama companys on how they match those setups an ship it to the buyers....
     
    Jun 12, 2019
  12. poncho151

    poncho151 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2017
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Absolutely! I’ve wondered for a long time if companies get a big box of sarados and swords then assemble them or if they come completely assembled strung with a tama or ken assembled but Tamas separate. I’m sure it varies from company to company depending on the volume and scale things are being done. Also who is in fact assembling them, do they play Kendama or at least have an understanding of it. I’ve always felt that I’d willingly pay an extra $5 to $10 on any mid priced setup (35-50 usd) to have it perfectly balanced and weight matched.
     
    Jun 12, 2019
  13. 96817dama

    96817dama Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2019
    Same boat here, I've bought many damas and honestly they're almost always Ken or tama heavy, turn extreme egg shape with the tama, have basically no lunar balance, I've even had ones where the bevel closes A LOT and spiking was super hard. But I do mostly buy cheaper stuff or discounted previously expensive stuff, with the only premium kendama being a musou. with that said I've really just grown used to having damas that have bad lunar balance or chipped paint out of the box etc. What I can say is the bad lunar balance really helped me with slingers and changed up my style. Theres really only a few damas I have right now that I think meets quality control standards but like i said i really only buy the cheaper stuff anyways with the exception of the musou, but with my collection of damas with bad lunar balance I'm really just gonna start buying the premium stuff only.
     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
    Jun 12, 2019
  14. ShovelLovell

    ShovelLovell Honed Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2018
    Location:
    Alabama
    I would say in some instances your expectations may be a little high. I don’t think lunar balance necessarily falls under QC. That being said I certainly have had the same frustrations before. As far as the Lyndon mod goes, just put your weight preferences in the notes section and in my experience Chad always gives exactly whatever you asked for!
     
    Jun 12, 2019
    poncho151 and htimSxelA like this.
  15. htimSxelA

    htimSxelA Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2016
    Location:
    Vancouver
    For cheaper dama, expecting perfectly honed isn't going to happen every time. If every piece that isn't perfectly weight matched and lunar honed was discarded, companies would end up with a LOT more waste, and higher product costs because of it (not to mention the time of having someone knowledgable sort through the pieces to make sure they're all honed).

    That is in part what you're paying for with more expensive setups (though, I've also paid a LOT for a dama, and ended up with one 25+ grams off weight). If you care about weight-matching, then you should figure out which brands are willing to take the time to make sure each setup is honed, and when you place an order, include an order note stating your requests. Brands that use 3rd party fulfilment will be unable to help you out in this regard, but the ones that do their own fulfilment and are hands-on with their products are usually down to help.

    *shameless plug* - I pack up most of the Terra orders, and we always do our best to match a customers request ;). Even for pro mods, we do a quick weight-match check to make sure they're reasonable (within ~10 grams). For our higher end products, this range gets tighter (Prefects ~7-8 grams), or you get to explicitly see the weights of each piece (handturned). Doing so takes extra work, but we know our customers want the best!
     
    Jun 12, 2019
  16. Seabass

    Seabass Honed Member

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2019
    Location:
    South Jersey
    I've found that most of the top companies (kusa, sweets, krom) will weight match if u ask for it. I feel that terra is #1 as everything I've bought from them has been 100% on point.
     
    Jun 12, 2019
    BrettFromTibet likes this.
  17. goenKendama

    goenKendama Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2016
    Location:
    Metro Manila, Philippines


    @Pyromawn We already had a similar discussion going so yours has been merged here. Check out the poll in the first post to cast a vote there.

    Just heard a Dama Nerds post recently where the guys talk about weight balance. (NSFW language)

     
    Jun 12, 2019
  18. slothymane

    slothymane Slayer

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2017
    Location:
    Austria
    Sooo the "cheapest" kens I bought wich are ALWAYS in a 2/3g range of eachother is daO.
    I've had worse weights on my GT's and with daO you get more precise weights for a THIRD of the price (Beech nattys) or half the price for a maple/ash with painted tama. Get on this level
     
    Jun 13, 2019
  19. Dre_11

    Dre_11 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2019
    Location:
    West Covina, CA
    I’ve had my share of bad balanced damas and they have both been shifts from kusa, one kaizen and one craft. The hickory craft is an extreme example (38 sarado 50 sword) and the shift is about 6 grams sword heavy. However I also have slims that I have found that have amazing lunar balance. The best lunar dama I have is an active x sweets which was only $30 compared to a $75 craft, so if $30 can get you good balance then all damas over that price should be balanced out more. Also the super stick paint on my craft slim and shift kaizen are already a little slick after a week compared to say a Sticky AF tama. Quality is hit or miss really.
     
    Jun 13, 2019
  20. poncho151

    poncho151 Honed Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2017
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Every prefect I own has a sword and sarado within 1g of each other if not equal. Also the tamas have been dead on if it’s the same wood species and very close if it’s a different species (ie ash on maple). I don’t think I’ve ever actually weighed my lbb’s and previous shapes, probably because it was less of a concern then but they play like they are matched and probably are. You’ve been by far the most consistent with weights and of course the overall quality control and I’ve never been disappointed with a terra purchase! Thank you
     
    Jun 13, 2019
    htimSxelA likes this.