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Abuse of Proforms....

post #1 of 47
Thread Starter 
This pertains more towards people who work in a ski shop, but this thing really irks the hell out of me. :

I think most of the people who work in shops know about the Salomon deal going on (or was going on? iono...might be sold out) with the pilot missing the yellow salomon logo near the tip. I dunno if I'm at liberty to say what the cost of them were, but anyhow, they were dirt cheap. Then I go on eBay and see people (the same people as a matter of fact) just selling them as "limited edition" skis. They're getting prices and making a reasonable profit.

Which comes to my next question. Proform basically says that the skis or equipment you buy are for your own personal use. I feel like the few people who do these kind of things ruin it for the rest of us who follow policy. Hell...the ski manufacturers don't have to have things such as pro-forms, but they do. And i personally think it's a privilege for the employees that go around being abused a little too much...what do you guys think about that?

post #2 of 47
It's dishonest.

What do you guys think if I bought some 2000 Solomons on form and sold them this season?
post #3 of 47
Yeah - who it hurts is ski resellers, so if they lose orders it will by domino effect eventually hurt the ski manufacturers.

On that individual sale of course the manufacturers don't lose anything - since the pro price is still at or above their wholesale price. But it means one less purchase from a shop.

Fortunately the quantitys available on both "pro-form" and "shop form" are limited so large scale scams cannot happen.

Of course the line here is tough to draw. At one point I was 'repping' for one manufacturer and had just gotten two extra pairs of skis on pro-form from them, when I got picked up for a sponsorship by another manufacturer, so of course I immediately sold my two pairs of skis.

If there was a rule against reselling them, where would I have been? Now it happens that I sold them to other pros, but that was really more by circumstance. I certainly have sold dozens of pairs of *used* skis over the years that I got either on pro-form or through sponsorship. And of course I gave the buyer a steal of a deal since I'd gotten them either cheap or free.

So I think that anybody who purchases on pro/shop form with the purpose of just reselling for a profit is pretty sleazy. But at the same time its tough to know how this could actually be fairly enforced.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ November 12, 2001 08:30 PM: Message edited 2 times, by Todd Murchison ]</font>
post #4 of 47
I'm sure there are some people who abuse pro-forms.

I'm sure that some people will find a way to abuse anything.

I'm also sure that the impact this has on the industry is statistically insignificant. Barely measurable.
post #5 of 47
But watch out - abusing *some* things will make you go blind and grow hair on your palms. :
post #6 of 47
I know we've had this debate before and the overwhelming opinion is the abuse is wrong. I agree. Anything I have gotten for friends have goen through the reps and not the form. Anything I've bought on form has been used before I've sold it and I always sell for what I paid or no more than $25 more. I don't consider this abuse. Now buying just for the purpose of selling for a profit is wrong and is abuse. So stop all you bad bad people...
post #7 of 47
I don't see much of a difference between them selling the goods for some profit and ski companies/retailers marking up new stuff 500% for the general public.
If anything, the ridiculous retail prices for skis that cost $150 max. to produce hurt skiing more than anything an individual selling his proform stuff ever could. Ski companies/retailers price skiing beyond what many can pay, and perpetuate an image of skiing as a sport for the elite few.
Also, I don't know how concerned the companies really are about this. I've abused different sorts of deals in the past (hooking up friends, etc.), and know of several pros who have actively sold their equipment for some extra money--the manufacturers know it goes on, but don't seem to care very much.
Does this activity violate an agreement? Sure. Is it wrong? I don't know, seems like basic capitalism to me. Read Das Kapital for more on that.
post #8 of 47
As a consumer, it is my right (arguably my duty) to buy as well as I can. This is true whether we are talking about a car or house or computer or skis.

It is amusing to see arguments about abuse of the Proform as if it is immoral when their true motivation is to protect that privilege for themselves to the detriment of the rest of the consumers.

Logic tells us that the people who pay true retail for anything are subsidizing the people who get things for cheap (or free.)

As Cramer once said on Seinfeld, "Retail is for idiots."
post #9 of 47
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by worldfishnski:

It is amusing to see arguments about abuse of the Proform as if it is immoral when their true motivation is to protect that privilege for themselves to the detriment of the rest of the consumers.

i dont think thats it at all. most of the time this pro form is considered part of the wages, or "benefits" of working at a gear shop. if this gets ruined, shop workers, tuners, etc get jacked out of the one reasone theyre probably working in that job. its not fair for someone makin six figures to try to scam their way in and get cheap stix at the expense of the shop guys. with six figs, you can afford to pay retail.

anyways, anyone in the industry should check out www.broform.com

im not spamming, i just think its a good concept.
post #10 of 47
A few observations.

As stated above these deals are in limited quantity. Only so many of the skis are avaiable. So the butthole (ok curse, heard it on TV) who orders it to sell it for profit is screwing the person that wants to buy it for his/her own use.

How long before you sell? I say one year, cause you should sell your old gear off so you can get the latest and greatest.

People just have no moral character. A person on this site actually had this deal for sale in the classified section. He was called out by another bear and used just a lame excuse. I work in a shop, and can't afford anything. But the fact is he will order these skis at a deal, sell them for twice as much as he paid, then turn around and buy the set up he really wants. In my opinion these are the guys that should not have jobs in the industry because of their lack of respect for the privledge of being able to get good deals.

Getting pro-deals is a benifit, not your right.
post #11 of 47

I hesitate to engage in arguments on this forum but here I go:

If it truly is a benefit (in the sense of health insurance or a bus pass, etc) to an employee or part of the wage then it is something that the employee should negotiate with the employer. The owner of the shop is well aware that he is the indirect beneficiary of the cheap deal that his employees are getting from the manufacturers. In the abscence of Pro-form, the retailer would give his people an employee discount for the skis (just like most other retailers do for their employees). In a sense that is what is happenning now anyway. You make it sound as if there should be a sliding scale on prices depending on one's income level. Rich people don't get rich by over-paying for things.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ November 13, 2001 11:35 AM: Message edited 1 time, by worldfishnski ]</font>
post #12 of 47
Everyone who has posted here so far is right to a certain extent. If I had to side with anyone here it would be Philth.

Pro forms are controlled by both the shops and the manufacturers. There are enough safeguards built in to this system to keep the abuse down.
Employee forms are the better deal, most manufacturers allow one to purchase up to two pairs of skis with bindings at a rediculusly discounted price. Most times cheaper than the shop can buy them for. Which reflects the real price of the ski plus shipping. Compare this price to the retail selling price and your mind will be blown. So, don't feel sorry for Solomon, Rossignol, Volkl, Etc.
The shop where I used to work had a policy that let us buy as many skis from factories as we could afford, as long as we didn't profit from sales to his customers, in other words, sell them to my customers and you're outta here pal!
I will usually get my skis at form prices, ski them a year, then sell them next season at close to what I paid for them. Hey, the people who buy them get a good deal on a ski that is still like new, I get to buy this years skis at a good deal, the shop gets bussiness, the manufacturers make a profit and everyone is happy. What's the big deal?
post #13 of 47
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by sundog15:
its not fair for someone makin six figures to try to scam their way in and get cheap stix at the expense of the shop guys. with six figs, you can afford to pay retail.

So if you make less is worming your way into a proform OK? How poor do you have to be before you're allowed cheap/free stuff?
And if you're going to claim this as a 'benefit' of employment, then why can't the employee profit as he sees fit? Whether that means through use of the equipment or its sale?
This one year 'limit' before sale is deemed OK sounds a little fishy to me as well.
post #14 of 47
Let me see if this qualifies for "Form Abuse".

1997 - Bought a pair of K2 MSL Skis from a ski shop for $199.
1998 - Broke the MSL. K2 replaced it with a Merlin IV...a $600 retail ski at the time.
1999 - Sold the used Merlin IV for a nice little sum. I was moonlighting in a shop again and use the proceeds of the Merlin sale to buy a pair of Rossi XX on "form". :
2000 - Sold the XX on this forum! Used the proceeds to buy a "rep's" Mod X Pro's
2001 - Broke the Mod X Pro and received an Axis X Pro. [img]tongue.gif[/img]

All of that because of cheap gear, pro prices and "forms". Okay, I admit that the relevance is sketchy at best, but I did get 5 pairs of skis for an initial investment of $199.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ November 13, 2001 11:13 AM: Message edited 1 time, by Bandit Man ]</font>
post #15 of 47
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Bandit Man:
Let me see if this qualifies for "Form Abuse".

[sordid history]

1997 - 5 pairs of skis for an initial investment of $199.

That's not form abuse, that's creative schwagging -- you should be proud!
post #16 of 47

I too agree with Philth.

To his post I would add that the people who really don't like the Pro-form are the retailers.

I got some Pro-form bindings last year and was told by the "Pro" that I couldn't take them to a certain local shop for mounting because in the past the owner of the shop had called the manufacturer to complain about people re-selling Pro-form equipment.
post #17 of 47
>>Everyone who has posted here so far is right to a certain extent. <<

Wow - everybody should thank Lars! :
post #18 of 47
Thank me for what? Don't thank me, thank the shops that allow pro and shop forms. There are always deals out there if one knows how to get them and where and when to look for them. There are so many ways to take advantage of the ski industry. Work at a Resort, work at a shop, Patrol, teach, Rep, get involved, get deals, it's that simple.
post #19 of 47
I found it better to work in the real world, earn 5x what I earned in a shop and pay street prices that to work in a shop, get free skiing and pro-deals. Now please don't bring up my affiliation with Volant .
post #20 of 47
I was kidding Lars, and I don't think you meant to project the air which I precieved when you said "Everyone who has posted here so far is right to a certain extent."

This seems to be more the realm of opinion than, for example: a solvable problem in which laymen can be discussing a formula actively . . . but then a mathamatician descends on the discussion and tells them the *ANSWER*! :
post #21 of 47
This keeps centering around working in a shop for a pro-form, there are also full time outdoors jobs that also give access to pro-forms. Being a mountain guide, race coach, competitor, instructor, instructor trainer, patroller . . . etc.

Looking at it from this context, the idea of working something not-so-fun 40hrs a week just so one can afford to ski "in style" 14-16hrs a week . . . has always ultimately seemed less satisfying than doing something really fun AND skiing 40hrs a week, and then just driving home in a Subaru instead of a BMW. But, I don't want to shoot down materialism as a lifestyle choice, because that means they are not crowding up the slopes during the week . . . and they have lots of $ to blow in the mountains so that we can keep skiing full time!

That was sort of laying in the table eh? Guess I better go and hide!
post #22 of 47
Pro form or pro purchase is pretty simple. You buy something from the manufacturer at a discount in hopes that others will follow your lead because you're supposed to be a professional and what you use is supposed to be good equipment. If you read the fine print on the contract it basically states the gear is for YOU only You and is not to be re-sold, usually for a period of time spelled out in the pro-form. Pretty straightforeward.
What Mello boy was originally speaking of was "shop form" not pro-form but either way you slice it. Pro or shop discounts are for certain employess personal use not to pay for a trip to mexico.
If you abuse the system, its your fault for being basically a dishonest person, and your managers fault for not tracking the program. If you get your shop or company booted off the pro or shop plan...... Tough!
post #23 of 47
post #24 of 47
All I know is that I just purchased a new pair of skis the other day and it hurt real bad.....way too much $$$$.
post #25 of 47
Pro forms are a way of rewarding people who work in the ski industry. By being an instructor, ski patrol, shop person, etc. they have qualified for this privilege. People who abuse this privilege take sales from retailers. The retailers put pressure on the reps and the pro deal gets more restrictive.
I don't see a problem with a pro selling his/her gear after they have used it.
post #26 of 47
Up front I get pro-form. Up front I have sold and will sell again USED pro-form skis.

What is going on now seems to be lots of pro-form eligible people buying the best deal in pro-form right now (Salomon Pilots), and selling them here and on EBAY. This certainly makes my used pair worth less, and I have them listed considerably below what I paid, while the scammers have their brand new in the shrink rap skis listed for at least 100% markup.

This is not what Salomon hoped for. Now Salomon shops are in compition with Salomon shop employees. So what is a pair of brand new in the shop Pilots now worth???? $1000.00 or $500.00.

Let's not discount some of the reason for pro-deal... To get the skis out there, be seen, and be talked about. Realalistically no big company is really interested in doing people a big favor by giving them a price break. Some thing has to be in it for them and that is the advertising.

I look for Pilots to be worthless in the shops this year, and it is doubtful Salomon will ever have that kind of deal again on pro form.

I hope people realized that they have killed the golden goose. Not just for them but for all of us, and that includes the people that the non-scammers sell used equipment to.

this year will have great deals on ebay, next year?????

It is just not right, and Salomon will sooner or later catch someone and yank their priviledge. I'd be willing to guess that some of the ebay sellers are using their same email address that they use to access the Salomon pro-deal site. I won't turn anyone in to Salomon, but I bet someone will.
post #27 of 47
Thread Starter 
I think I may have come off a bit wrong in my opinion. The thing that irks me is people selling brand new pro-formed equipment.

Like Trouthead said, the best deal in pro-forms right now are the Salomon Pilots. People are buying them for a rediculously low price because they had a cosmetic defect. People then go on ebay or whatever and sell them for a pretty penny. 100% - 200% markup isn't unusual on these things. First of all, if these people get caught, it's the shop that released the pro-form that usually gets the finger pointed at.

For example, if a guy named Poncho were pulling this scheme off and was working for Death Valley Ski Shop, it comes back around to the Ski Shop. "DV Ski Shop is dishonest" "DV Ski shop won't be recieving the proforms any more" so on and so forth. These actions bring a bad name to the shop and it hurts, in my opinion, the shop themselves. Poncho would probably then get fired and go on to another shop, and the same cycle may or may not begin again.

post #28 of 47
Mellowboy, I hadn't heard that the difference in graphics was a defect. If so that makes it even worse for the EBAY seller calling it a special limited edition. One ebayer said something to the effect that it was special and you would not see this graphic on the slopes very often.

For what it is worth I have listed last years Pilots on Ebay with a starting bid of $300.00 I paid considerably more for them last season and only skied them 10 times.

I think that is what is supposed to happen to pro deal equipment. It gets sold for less than you paid, and you get to ski new stuff every year.

There are also some (I would guess) speculators with CROSSMAX skis listed on EBAY. NO bids as of yet but reserves of $600.00 (or around $600.00) Once again selling them at a profit and a markup better than the ski shop gets. Or maybe not quite as good. My shop does not sell Salomon Alpine gear so I am not sure of the markup.

Really I hope someone gets caught and loses pro deal for good. It just seems crooked to me! :
post #29 of 47

My wife was a ski instructor here on the East Coast for 5 years and the deals were pretty good under ProForm, but some of them were not that far different from retail.


She loves Dominator Ski Wax and spent good money at one website (I can't remember which one) and then the next year we found that there was a site called www.ProFormSkiing.com which has significant discounts, but it still open to the public.


What are your thoughts about sites like ProForm Skiing that have basically proform pricing but make it available to the public?

post #30 of 47


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