The Official Zebralight Thread .

chillinn

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Yes, and right now, most of their lights are back order or out of stock. I suspect most of those back-orders will never be filled, but we'll see next year.

It is absolutely normal and unremarkable that Zebralight has so many models on backorder. I had 6 lights ordered and fulfilled since September (obviously not counting my order today) of backordered SC5c/w II, and they were never not on backorder. First couple orders were fulfilled in 2 weeks, my last order took a month

If this is a ploy to get sales, they really suck at it if they don't have stock.

I agree, but this practice of running out of stock is all too common by sellers of pretty much everything.

Personally, there's a couple of lights I'd like, but there's no way I would trust placing an order now.

Maybe wait until or after Jan. 1, 2021? See my point? You have 30 days to order a Zebralight, or forget it, or have a friend in the South proxy for you.


Zebralight charges your credit card or paypal as soon as you place the order, not when they ship. I guess you're protected with paypal, though.

This is pretty normal, too. Without experience ordering from Zebralight, you're right to be paranoid WalkIntoTheLight. But they're a good seller, many many satisfied customers, and no complaints of unfulfilled orders. It is ok, really... they won't screw you. It might take a month to get to you, but IKEA takes 6 weeks just to ship a quad of NiMH cells, and I have a Convoy I ordered 3 months ago that still hasn't arrived. Sometimes getting a flashlight is a slow process, for whatever the reason, but it doesn't mean there's a scam or risk here.
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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This is pretty normal, too. Without experience ordering from Zebralight, you're right to be paranoid WalkIntoTheLight. But they're a good seller, many many satisfied customers, and no complaints of unfulfilled orders. It is ok, really... they won't screw you. It might take a month to get to you, but IKEA takes 6 weeks just to ship a quad of NiMH cells, and I have a Convoy I ordered 3 months ago that still hasn't arrived. Sometimes getting a flashlight is a slow process, for whatever the reason, but it doesn't mean there's a scam or risk here.

I've ordered half a dozen lights from Zebralight in the past. And yes, I'm aware they're slow. I'm saying that I'd be hesitant to do that now, given all the signs they might be going out of business.

So, yeah, I'll be missing out on ordering my last zebralight. If they no longer want to sell to me, that's okay, it's their choice. Very strange business practice, if they're actually not going out of business. A Chinese company that doesn't want to sell world-wide anymore? That's a first.
 

chillinn

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Sorry, I read the comments above and saw the speculation, but I see absolutely no signs of anything. What signs?

I agree their business practices are strange compared to what business should be (stock up, sell stock, stock up, sell stock... why is this so hard?), and it doesn't excuse it, but there are a lot of weird flashlight businesses. Surefire is friggin weird. McGizmo is super great and all, but the business is weird. Maratac and County Comm are weird. So many flashlight makers are weird, that if one wasn't weird, it would be weird.
 

markr6

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are they gonna get you the best tint sample?


LOL!! I haven't played that game for a long time, so maybe I'll do well. It just got delivered 10 minutes ago so I'll know here soon...

...there are a lot of weird flashlight businesses. Surefire is friggin weird. McGizmo is super great and all, but the business is weird. Maratac and County Comm are weird. So many flashlight makers are weird, that if one wasn't weird, it would be weird.

There are a lot of weird people out there...glad I'm not one of them :)
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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Sorry, I read the comments above and saw the speculation, but I see absolutely no signs of anything. What signs?

I agree their business practices are strange compared to what business should be (stock up, sell stock, stock up, sell stock... why is this so hard?), and it doesn't excuse it, but there are a lot of weird flashlight businesses. Surefire is friggin weird. McGizmo is super great and all, but the business is weird. Maratac and County Comm are weird. So many flashlight makers are weird, that if one wasn't weird, it would be weird.

Well, it's already been mentioned in this thread, but I think it's the recent changes in Zebralight's business that points to them closing soon. They are not selling anywhere other than the US starting next month, they have permanently closed their Texas location, and they are discontinuing some of their best models (without replacements).

Sure, the fact their website sucks is nothing new, but the other things definitely point to rapidly shrinking business. My guess is that the owners (who live in China) have moved on to something else. I think they've been doing this for almost 10 years. Perhaps they found a better opportunity, or got bored with it. It's been 3 years since the last major shake-up of their models. Just the SC700d, earlier last year, for anything new. That's pretty slow design for an electronics company, if they were serious about the business.
 

WebHobbit

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Well, it's already been mentioned in this thread, but I think it's the recent changes in Zebralight's business that points to them closing soon. They are not selling anywhere other than the US starting next month, they have permanently closed their Texas location, and they are discontinuing some of their best models (without replacements).

Sure, the fact their website sucks is nothing new, but the other things definitely point to rapidly shrinking business. My guess is that the owners (who live in China) have moved on to something else. I think they've been doing this for almost 10 years. Perhaps they found a better opportunity, or got bored with it. It's been 3 years since the last major shake-up of their models. Just the SC700d, earlier last year, for anything new. That's pretty slow design for an electronics company, if they were serious about the business.

Didn't we find out a few years back that the owners name was "George something" and he lived and ran the business from his home in Texas (manufacturing being in China)? Didn't the story say he was an expatriate from China?
 

Owen

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I have a pair of unprotected Orbtronic 3500mAh IMRs(bought by accident instead of protected cells) listed as 18.5x65.6mm, but saw the Sanyos on the ZL site are 18.2x65.1mm. Doesn't seem like much difference, but I didn't want to take any chances.
FYI, after finding the Orbtronic data pdf, plus weighing and putting the calipers to them, anyway, these are the same cells.
$10.75 from Orbtronic, $6.00 on sale from ZL.


The SC64w HI is just freaky good. Phenomenal tint, and what a range of output. I'm used to my old SC52w, and the difference between its dingy tint and the new light's is pretty drastic. Between that and the tighter spot, it seems brighter, and provides noticeably better illumination, at similar output.
Most impressive to me is the output on the H2 level I chose, that's rated at 467 lumens. Sure, it pulls 240mA more(1.1A vs 860mA from the same battery) at the tail than my beloved old ~300 lumen Malkoff M61N, but I wasn't expecting it to just walk all over it. The comparison did confirm what I'd always thought-that my M61N has exceptionally good tint. Just a fuzz warmer, and a bit rosy in the spill(which actually makes natural colors stand out). Man, these newer LEDs are awesome, though...
 
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chillinn

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Well, it's already been mentioned in this thread, but I think it's the recent changes in Zebralight's business that points to them closing soon.

I missed the bit about closing their Texas location, but I would question the source of this news, as the website still lists a TX address for returns and warranty.

But more poignantly, you may have an opinion, and that is fine, but I see no support for the argument: "facts x, y, z, therefore they're going out of business." Support might be something along the lines of, "I saw three other companies that did z, and they went out of business," even if that is weak, it does support the argument.

In my experience, product companies do not prepare to go out of business, other than filing chapters 11 and 13... and do not give signs of going out of business other than reporting poor revenue for a long time. Rather, they just pop out of existence with no warning, and all their stock shows up on eBay. I just don't see the evidence as evidence of anything, but I am willing to entertain the idea they are going out of business, if only there was support for the argument.
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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Amazon is rife with "unintentional" knock-off fakes due to binning. I haven't heard of any knock-off ZLs....but I wouldn't be surprised if there were.

I doubt it. Zebralights would be too hard to fake (unibody), and are not popular enough to be worth it.

Didn't we find out a few years back that the owners name was "George something" and he lived and ran the business from his home in Texas (manufacturing being in China)? Didn't the story say he was an expatriate from China?

Zebralight's directors are listed as George and Ling Yao. Not sure where they live, but someone else said China and they sounded pretty certain about it. I think that is most likely, since all the manufacturing is done there. (And probably design, when they used to do it.)

But, you could be right. There was probably some reason they incorporated in Texas. Might have been legal or tax reasons, though.
 

Outdoorsman5

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I missed the bit about closing their Texas location, but I would question the source of this news, as the website still lists a TX address for returns and warranty.

I think you missed this as well. Regarding our “source,” a couple of us looked up ZL on Google Maps in Texas. The plant is listed as “Permanently Closed.” Why would that not serve as a “sign” that ZL could be closing?

But more poignantly, you may have an opinion, and that is fine, but I see no support for the argument: "facts x, y, z, therefore they're going out of business." Support might be something along the lines of, "I saw three other companies that did z, and they went out of business," even if that is weak, it does support the argument.

You “see no support for the argument?” Ok
- Texas plant “permanently closed.”
- Key lights discontinued.
- ZL responded to questions about the discontinued lights and were told “no replacement lights planned.”
- Their website states they are only selling to the US market starting in Jan.
- VERY few new products in recent years.

Those reasons are concerning to a ZL fan like me, and they appear to be symptoms of a failing company. This line of thinking looks logical to some of us.

In my experience, product companies do not prepare to go out of business, other than filing chapters 11 and 13... and do not give signs of going out of business other than reporting poor revenue for a long time. Rather, they just pop out of existence with no warning, and all their stock shows up on eBay. I just don't see the evidence as evidence of anything, but I am willing to entertain the idea they are going out of business, if only there was support for the argument.

I’d recommend reading the the last few pages in this post. Regarding your comment stating, “companies do not prepare to go out of business,” I think it’s the opposite. When a company knows they are shutting down, they plan it out. I watched my dad plan the closure of his business. It took him about 5 years to wind it down. I was in upper management with a large builder in the SE U.S. that went under in 2009. We planned our exit from the market over the course of 1.5 years. We started with office closures, layoffs, cutting costs, stopped new construction, and liquidated assets. We even planned out our exit with our creditors. I remember telling our creditors in Oct 2008 that we would be out of money by Feb 2009.

I hope these aren’t symptoms of Zebralight failing. There’s no one else out there that I’m interested in, so I’m hoping this evidence is just coincidental.
 
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chillinn

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I think you missed this as well. Regarding our “source,” a couple of us looked up ZL on Google Maps in Texas. The plant is listed as “Permanently Closed.” Why would that not serve as a “sign” that ZL could be closing?

First of all, how do you have any idea what that address was used for? Why is it a "plant?" Are you assuming they make stuff there? Why? What evidence is there it is anything more than a business office or small warehouse? I looked it up on Google Maps Street View. It is completely unremarkable, and small. Why would it serve as a sign some location was closed? Businesses move, restructure, change, grow, shrink. You can just hold up some fact and say, "see?" But that doesn't prove anything, and it doesn't even suggest anything but confirmation bias. You're just seeing what you want to see without anything to actually support the conclusion.



You “see no support for the argument?”

Nope. Not one little doggone thing to indicate that whatsoever.

Ok
- Texas plant “permanently closed.”

deja vu. What plant??

You have an address. Suddenly, somehow, without any evidence whatsoever, it is a manufacturing plant!


- Key lights discontinued.

Completely meaningless, and entirely ordinary and unremarkable for Zebralight. That is what they do. They develop a model, sell it for a few years, then stop when the parts are all gone, discontinue the model. There is a spreadsheet on the site of all their current and discontinued models. and every single one of those dozens of discontinued models could be described as "key" (why not?), and yet Zebralight never went out of business each time they discontinued a model. It is a ludicrous suggestion.

- ZL responded to questions about the discontinued lights and were told “no replacement lights planned.”

Again, completely ordinary and unremarkable of correspondence with Zebralight. What does it even mean? Is it possible that they were saying one thing and you were interpreting something else entirely? Could it possibly be that they might not consider some new model in the works as a replacement? I am telling you it means nothing, and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise.


- Their website states they are only selling to the US market starting in Jan.

Again, so what? How on earth are you connecting this to "going out of business?"

- VERY few new products in recent years.

Hmm... I think the same thing is true of Apple, Inc. OMG!!! Apple must be going out of business!!! That's called counter-example and it decimates your insinuated argument (because there is no actual supportive argument here... just a "hey look! Fact X!" With a conclusion drawn that simply in no way shape or form follows from "Fact X" alone.

Those reasons are concerning to a ZL fan like me, and they appear to be symptoms of a failing company. This line of thinking looks logical to some of us.

Show me any other failed company with the same characteristics or description, show me any failed company whatsoever that closed one location, that discontinued "key products," that corresponded with customers saying they would not replace some product, and that ceased global sales and only sold in the US. Do that, and your suspicions may not be off the wall. But if you can not... your suspicions are off the wall.



I’d recommend reading the the last few pages in this post. Regarding your comment stating, “companies do not prepare to go out of business,” I think it’s the opposite. When a company knows they are shutting down, they plan it out. I watched my dad plan the closure of his business. It took him about 5 years to wind it down.

Oh, good. At least Zebralight will be here for another 5 years. See? Now you have ME jumping to conclusions without any evidence to believe such a thing.

I was in upper management with a large builder in the SE U.S. that went under in 2009. We planned our exit from the market over the course of 1.5 years. We started with office closures, layoffs, cutting costs, stopped new construction, and liquidated assets. We even planned out our exit with our creditors. I remember telling our creditors in Oct 2008 that we would be out of money by Feb 2009.

How much inventory did you have? Oh, it was a building company, so there was no inventory. I guess that is really identical to Zebralight's business.

I hope these aren’t symptoms of Zebralight failing. There’s no one else out there that I’m interested in, so I’m hoping this evidence is just coincidental.

No one as of yet has explained why they might be symptoms of Zebralight failing... and yet the belief just comes out of nowhere.

Do not believe your worst fears simply because they are your worst fears. Have reasons that explain why you believe what you do, not simply a list of completely unrelated and unremarkable facts, which is what that short list is... it is just barely enough for a conspiracy theory.
 
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Outdoorsman5

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Chillinn, I’m not quite sure why this has gotten your panties all up in a wad. How the points of this discussion that are concerning to us ZL fans are sooooo outlandish. You took every observation I/we laid out and discredited each one quite childishly & deceitfully. If you don’t want to participate in a “discussion” then I don’t care one little bit. If you want to turn a discussion into an argument like a little child, then again, I don’t care. You have turned this thread into a WASTE OF TIME FOR EVERYONE. If I were a mod, I’d peal you back a bit. It’s guys like you that ruin good places like CPF.
 
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