Part 1: Year 2012
Crashing a model usually voids any kind of warranty one may have enjoyed prior to crashing. At least, this is the case for 99.9% of RC models on the market. Some manufacturers offer limited warranty on RC models, but crash it and you're on your own. Fair enough, I suppose, since RC models do have a fairly strong tendency to break when you crash them, especially flying RC models.
When I first started flying quadcopters, it did not take long for me to try doing flips and rolls trying my hand at flying acrobatics. I soon found myself crashing every day. Most days meant having to repair or replace something on my models. Along with this came the waiting game; ordering parts and waiting for delivery. It seemed the only way to stay in the air was to keep a high inventory of spare parts.
I started wondering why models weren't built to withstand a crash since such events are inevitable for all of us. Perhaps manufacturers are happy selling replacement parts. That just did not sit well with me so I looked at different materials and frame designs in order to save me a few bucks. I knew I could do better. I found myself scrounging recycling stations looking for scrap metal, aluminium parts and even stainless steel parts. I tried building frames with everything I could get my hands on. This is how it all started.
Finally I found some material that was light, strong, and capable of taking a beating far more than any commercial frame I had tried. There was nothing special about the frames I built back then. Just a classic sandwich construction using rectangular aluminium tubing and aluminium center plates. I named these frames Armattan.
Soon, I found myself spending entire weekends shaping center plates and drilling aluminium arms because so many people wanted me to build one of these new Armattans for them. I needed a solution because there simply weren't enough hours in one day. CNC was the solution. I started contracting a local factory to manufacture center plates out of aluminium. The once homemade frames were now looking refined with subtle curves and state of the art laser cutting technology precision.
Soon enough, I figured why not get arms laser cut, too. The CNC models were born and would soon be recognized as world-class acrobatic platforms that could take a hard crash and live to tell the tale. Over time, the CNC models would be revised, improved and anodized. These models are still sold by Armattan, and they represent a steady evolution of the Armattan brand.
But why stop there? Aluminium is light, strong and makes for a very good material for acrobatic frames. But maybe something better could be used to make frames; carbon fiber.
I tested many different designs, materials and manufacturing methods looking for something light, but stronger than the next best thing. After months of testing, the CF models were born. These models are lighter, stronger and more efficient as a result. I first introduced the CF 258 and CF 355. To my surprise, no one was able to break these frames. For sure I thought someone would destroy a frame or at least break a center plate or an arm. But it did not happen. To this day, it has not happened once. NOT ONCE.
This gave me the confidence of designing a smaller model, the CF 226, which I promoted as being the first and only lifetime warrantied frame in the world. You can guess, I made a lot of them because everyone wanted one. Lifetime warranty is unheard of in the RC industry.
Months later, not a single warranty claim came in, and not a single report of any of the CF series models having been broken. No spare parts were sold. These frames simply struck me as being unbreakable. So I finally announced that all of the carbon fiber Armattan frames would be warrantied for life.
So this is it. Armattan is now the only frame manufacturer in the world to offer any kind of warranty post-crashing your model. But it is not any kind of warranty. It is lifetime warranty. The word is crash it, break it and we'll replace it. For free and for life. Be it you purchase the frame from someone else second- hand or from an Armattan official re-seller, the warranty remains valid. Forever.
Note that the warranty is valid for for most carbon fiber parts on all of the Armattan models. Hardware and electronics are not warrantied. But hey, that's a lot since these are the parts you will break and that will see you grounded on most frames out there. And no, you do not have to create a ticket or go through a tedious warranty claim procedure. You simply need to contact me. I am the manufacturer, I am the builder and you get to deal with me directly if you ever manage to break any of my frames.
So... Happy crashing folks, and have fun!
Part 2: Year 2017
A lot has happened since I wrote the above back in 2012. 5 years went by already. It's been a bit of a roller coaster ride, to tell the truth. Sometimes we feel like we are on top of the world. Other times, we feel like we're just foolishly clenching to a dream.
Five years later, we are still the only quadcopter company to offer real, no fine print, lifetime warranty on our air frames. Not only that, but we also have more models in our repertoire than any other quad makers in the world by now.
In 2015, we launched Armattan Productions. Two years later, Armattan Productions is now the largest amalgamation of talented quadcopter designers on the planet. The amount of talent on this platform is incredible, and of course, the result is there are more quadcopter frame designs listed there by independent designers than anywhere else. it's a great resource for designers and manufacturers alike.
As for Armattan Quads, we are still pushing forward. I am following my passion for tinkering and coming up with solutions to common problems. We turn these solutions into concrete designs we can manufacture, test, improve, manufacture again, test again, draw again, manufacture and test again.... It's a wheel in motion, not a means to an end. We take from every design and we learn.... This is called the design cycle, and it is in constant motion at Armattan these days. We're getting better... :)
I write "us" or "we" because it is no longer 2012. There are so many people who have helped us along the way, and who are still helping us, that it would be impossible to thank them all. But you know who you are, and I hope we were able to demonstrate how much we appreciate it.
Where to now, Mr. CEO? I don't know. But I will tell you what I know. If I am to be the CEO; the captain, we best all get back to work because we're not about to stop. Coming up with state of the art designs, award winning customer service, and unmatched product support doesn't come easy. We have our work cut out for us.
And let's not forget... None of of our work would be possible without the support of pilots from all walks of life, and from the world over. We cannot thank you guys enough. I make a promise that we'll work darn hard to make it up to you all, though. We'll be there when you need help. Count on it.