Is "Made In The USA" Important?

Show Notes

On this episode of the Hunting Gear Podcast, Dan is joined by returning guest Jacob Coons about hunting gear that is Made In The USA. The conversation revolves around whether or not hunters make their purchasing decisions based off where the hunting product was manufactured. The guys break down price points in specific product categories, product durability, manufacturing stereotypes, and much more. The guys also give their opinions about how they choose their hunting gear and if being made in the US holds any weight.

Show Transcript

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Hey everybody. Welcome back. This is The Hunting Gear Podcast, and I'm your host, Dan Johnson. And today we're gonna be talking about Made in America and what that means and how, Today's guest, Jacob Koons, he is a returning guest myself. We're gonna talk about what that means to us. We're gonna talk about if Made in America actually means that [00:01:00] a product is better.

We're gonna talk about maybe some stereotypes from the Made in America stigma that, you know, back in the day, and I'll just kinda say this, back in the day, if it was made in China, it was junk. But now I feel like technology is starting to catch up with the manufacturing processes and the technology is making it is closing the quality gap.

And hunting products and the hunting culture for a lot of people being made in America is a huge influence on how they choose their hunting gear and equipment and on others it's more price driven. And so that's what today's conversation is about. It's about a lot of category, we talk about different categories, we talk about made over, like maybe being made overseas doesn't necessarily mean it's the worst thing possible.

But it's just an open conversation about two guys. I personally love when a product is made [00:02:00] in America, but there are times when I'm not going to buy an American made product if it's on the market just because it, could potentially be out of, outside of my budget. And so there's a lot that goes into it.

And that's what we talk about to I know you guys are gonna enjoy it. Before we get into the conversation though I gotta talk about code blue sensor real quick now. The hunting season's almost here. And actually on the Nine Finger Chronicles podcast within the next, I'm gonna say three weeks, I'm gonna try to get Troy Pottinger on and he's gonna talk about mocks grape setups.

And ultimately that's what I'm gonna be using from Code Blue. I'm gonna, I'm gonna be using some of their other stuff their other scents, but I'm really looking forward to using their rope of Dope Little, I guess it's the Rope of Dope Mock scrap kit. And man, I, I feel like if I do it right, I can get deer in front of trail cameras and within shooting range.

And it's just something I'm, that I'm very interested in. So here's what I'm gonna [00:03:00] say. I'm gonna say go to code blue Read up on all the different cent elimination sprays they have. The both real deer tar, like real deer tarsal glands, real deer urine. And they also have synthetics, they have laundry detergent, deodorant.

So when it comes to scent and whether you're trying to block yours or use theirs to get deer closer, they have it. And I do have a discount code and it is N F C two zero for 20% off. So if you have any questions about Code Blue or the discount code, hit me up on Instagram and I say we cut it short.

And let's get right into today's Hunting Gear podcast with Jacob Koons. 3, 2, 1. Alright, ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the Hunting Gear Podcast. And I am joined today by returning guest, Mr. Jacob Coons. Jacob man, how we doing, 

[00:03:56] Jacob: Dan? I'm doing great. It's August, the countdown is [00:04:00] on, and it's exciting here in Kentucky.

We start dear season in about 30 days. I got a tip of the hat. I gotta tip the hat to the guys that come to Kentucky for the September deer, because it's like the Amazon out there. There's sticks and triggers and I do it a little bit, but it's not a lot of fun because it's just it's not that October or late, that November rutt stuff.

But yeah, it's exciting. I'm excited and I'm excited about some out-of-state stuff and it's gonna be a good steer. It's gonna be a good season, regardless of what happens. Yeah. 

[00:04:30] Dan: What do you got going on this fall? Any, what out-state hunts you going on? 

[00:04:35] Jacob: I drew a general elk tag for Wyoming.

I'm gonna go out there for about two weeks in September. I'm gonna go solo. I've gone out west before and I hunt solo here for deer. But it's a different animal when you're bivy hunting out of your backpack and you're. You're 1500 miles from home and if something goes bad it's really can go bad.

So yeah, I'm a little excited and nervous at the same time. But [00:05:00] I think, sometimes, we just try to do things that are difficult to just test ourselves and I think this will be a fun test. Yeah. 

[00:05:06] Dan: I'll tell you what, man. You mentioned you, you're going to Wyoming Fornel Hunt, right? Yeah.

And how long are you gonna be going for that one? 

[00:05:15] Jacob: How many weeks? It's always, that's funny because I may just go for 30 days and get fired and divorced and not have a home when I get back. Because I think that's how a lot of us think. But technically it's supposed to be like 10 days.

I may stretch that into two weeks. 

[00:05:33] Dan: Yeah. I'll be completely honest with you. There are days where I wouldn't give a shit. If I come back home and the doors are locked and the keys are changed, I'd be like, at least I went on a, at least I went on an elk hunt. I don't get I don't care if you're gonna leave me because I hunt.

I went on a hunt. And not because I'm an alcoholic or I'm a drug addict, or I'm abusive, or you fill in the blanks there. That's, I feel like there's other, there's gotta, there's [00:06:00] always some other problems attached. Your wife left you because you were hunting too much, right? Did he pay the bills?

Yeah. Did he did he have a good job? Yeah. Was he nice? Yeah. Was he a good dad? Yeah. Oh, so you left him. Why, again like that just doesn't make such, they'll just bitch for a while and then just let 'em bitch. But, 

[00:06:22] Jacob: Dan, I tell you what, if that happens to one of us, let's commit to doing drugs together and something's really really, wild and crazy.

We'll go. Exactly. We'll go. We'll just go on some benders and just really make 

[00:06:35] Dan: people question us. Yep. Question our sanity. I know a couple guys who would probably come with us, so it's all good, man. But that's the thing. Like I've, I'm, I've been collecting preference points in Wyoming now for, I wanna say eight years.

Okay. And so when I eventually go to do that hunt, I'm gonna do it big. Yeah. [00:07:00] And there's no like I'm gonna communicate with my wife. I'm gonna set expectations, but the expectation is that I wanna do it by myself. But I'm gonna go for longer than eight days like I do. Yeah. 'cause usually I leave on a Saturday morning on my South Dakota hunts and I'm back the following Sunday.

All right. Two days of travel and six, six to eight days to hunt. All right. This is gonna be a different story because I've collected this many points, all, the whole way through. And I'm gonna, I'm gonna do it right. I'm gonna do it big. And it's like a once in a lifetime deal, especially when you have you, you've dedicated that much time to collecting preference 

[00:07:40] Jacob: points.

One of the things that doesn't get talked about enough, Dan, is when we go on these out-of-state trips, is like you have to get every duck in a row at the house. Yep. Yep. And a few years ago, I went to Montana and our refrigerator was acting up and I just said, screw [00:08:00] it. We're buying a new refrigerator.

And it was. It was a really high-end, nice refrigerator, but I was like, I don't need this nonsense. First of all, I don't need my wife buying a fridge while I'm gone. Because who knows what that would look like, but 

[00:08:13] Dan: two, I don't, it would look like a new husband is what it would look like.

[00:08:19] Jacob: I don't wanna think about it. I don't want to get some crazy Exactly. Saying, oh, the fridge is dead. We don't have any room for our food, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. So there's so much, we talk about gear and all that other stuff. You gotta get your house prepped. You gotta get every fricking thing lined up so that it works like clockwork, just like when you're there.


[00:08:38] Dan: it's and yet I still get calls and I still get text messages. Like I can remember one year I went on an outta state hunt and I was like I'm like, I will be back at this date. All right. And so I scheduled an eight days and there were basically two days of driving on the one on the front, one on the back.

And it was like two, maybe [00:09:00] three days in. It's like, when are you coming back? The kids are going crazy. I'm like, Hey, listen, you just gotta deal with it. You just gotta deal with it because yeah. You're an adult and I've, this is what I, this is what I do, right? I don't do anything else. This is what I do.

So deal with it. Yeah. So sometimes they don't like to hear that 

[00:09:22] Jacob: it's, I'm not gonna say anymore, because Yeah, 

[00:09:26] Dan: there might be. She's right behind you. Hey dude, blink, if you need help, blink. If you need help. Hey, dad was on the podcast. Let's listen to this. Exactly. But I'm really looking forward to this upcoming season.

I know you are. I don't have, I don't have a single trail camera out, and I bet you I've been saying that for about six weeks now. I need to get trail cameras out. I need to get trail cameras out and I don't have one trail camera out right now. 

[00:09:53] Jacob: I put mine out in February and March when I'm freaking going nuts.

And there's, I don't, [00:10:00] first of all, you better have lithium ion batteries and you better hope that you lock it because of Turkey hunters and you better hope that you don't get brushed that grows over it. And I, here in Kentucky, like I said, it's like the fricking Amazon.

So I'm guessing the cameras I have out probably are just getting pictures of weeds, but but I just don't like getting out in some of this stuff. I will probably go out in the next two or three weeks and pull some of that just to look at that data. But I tend to cover ground in January, February, March, so I can see, the rub sign, the trails, everything's dead Of course.

And to me that helps me set up for this coming season. Plus it gets me, it scratches that itch, I don't know. I know there's something to be said about shifting food and shifting patterns and the data that I get, who knows if those cameras are still live.

I might be missing out on a bunch of data, but that's generally how I, I do it. 

[00:10:53] Dan: Yeah. Alright. Hunting gear podcast talk. And [00:11:00] this is something that I don't talk about like in detail. I've mentioned it before, but we're gonna get into detail to big detail today, hopefully about it. And that is made in America products versus not made in America products.

And I, I think, I honestly think there's a lot to talk about, and you. You brought it up in a message to me, or when we were talking in the last Hunting Gear podcast that you were on. And so I think what I'd like to do is, I just wanna start vague and get real detailed. How important is Made in America, that little tag on any product you buy that says Made in America?

How important is that to you? 

[00:11:45] Jacob: I wanna back up here because Yep. I just, I want to put some context around it. Let's, first of all, Dan, let's admit that we all own a billion products that are not made in America. Exactly. Our, our appliances, like I was just referring to, our TVs, the computers that we're on [00:12:00] right now, the, I know you don't have an iPhone.

We talked about that last time, but probably your Android was and my iPhone, my car, my clothing, a lot of our hunting equipment, And a lot of stuff that we're buying and Dan, you're the c e o of your household. And you've gotta, you've gotta make decisions.

You have revenue and you have an expenses, and you have to make decisions based on, you need to have a profit at the end of the year. 

[00:12:26] Dan: That's a good one. That's a good one. It, I guess it depends on who you're talking to, but yes, that's the ultimate goal is to put some money in savings. 

[00:12:36] Jacob: Okay. There you go. And so I think anytime we buy U s A goods, it's a good thing. It's employing our neighbors, it's raising our tax base, it's helping our school systems.

There's a trickle down effect. And honestly, it's better that I like the idea of us being independent from a country, as a country. Not dependent on China and Southeast Asia for, our goods and services. But I recently had an [00:13:00] interaction with a c e O of a hunting, hunting company regarding one of their products.

And they, there, there's a lot of these platforms out there that are creating a store for their audience or their tribe or whatever. And so Go hunt used to just do tag stats, or draw stats. But now they have an online store and Black Ovis is an online store and 

[00:13:25] Dan: Me Eater, right?


[00:13:26] Jacob: Yeah. Me Eaters, that's a, that's an imperfect one. Meat eater. I think Hunt and Fool, which also is another tag company. Yeah. They have Gear full now. Yep. A lot of places go Wild is, the online app, they have a gear store, and so a lot of these companies are selling products and.

One of them, which will remain nameless, was co-promoting a a product that they partnered with on a diff with a different company. And it was a backpack. It was, I took a good hard look at it. I really wanted, I was like, oh, this looks interesting. [00:14:00] So it was a backpack and it was about 26 liters.

So this is a little bit bigger than your kids' back school backpack. It was camo. It has some molly looping on it. And and then it opens up and then it has a sleeve for your laptop. So this, there was no, there's no frame, expandable frame. It wasn't designed for saddle hunting or anything specific.

It was just a basic backpack. And I was really surprised by the sticker price on it. And I was, I mean if, think about conceptually what I just described Dan, like it was a basic backpack, but it was camo ma molly paneling. And let's just assume that it's made better than it was made in the u s A and it's veteran owned, so I'm just gonna put that on there.

[00:14:49] Dan: It, it was made in the U ss a and it wa it is veteran owned, made in 

[00:14:53] Jacob: the u s A veteran owned. Okay. Yeah. Okay. Alright. And those are good things, but I'm gonna share with you some pricing on a comparable [00:15:00] backpack that's not made in the ss a but I happen to use I've used it for three or four years now and just beat the hell out of it.

But what do you think would be the, this is just a, an average backpack. What do you think would be the sticker price on something like that? It made the u s a better known 

[00:15:16] Dan: It is hard for me to not like to make a guess without not knowing what I know. So I'm gonna say that backpack was between two 50 and $300.

[00:15:28] Jacob: Okay. Okay. What do you think it would retail if it was made in China? 

[00:15:32] Dan: I'm gonna go with $200. 

[00:15:37] Jacob: Okay. Okay. The backpack that I have, and there's several that are out there that are really well-built. And they're happen to be made in China. They're somewhere between 40, $50. Okay. Maybe, if you looked a little bit harder like a Columbia backpack of similar design is $70.

And again, these are all XUS products. This [00:16:00] particular backpack was $355. Okay. And I. I'm not afraid to voice my opinion. And so I, the c e o and the founder had left five star reviews on this product. And, and I'll be honest with you, weater does this a lot.

Weater will have products of their own and then have their guys, they'll do videos of reviewing those products. And I don't necessarily have a problem with that. I think my problem is that when you start leaving, like star reviews it, it's like, what? You're selling something and you're putting your five stars against it?

And it just seems to me a little disingenuous. It's wait a minute, I just bought a, I just bought a new Toyota vehicle. And I'm like what does the c e o think of this RAV four? I'm, I don't know, maybe he'll give it three stars. I don't know, no. He gives it five stars Yeah do you understand?


[00:16:56] Dan: you see what I'm saying? I know exactly what you're saying. The first glance [00:17:00] review will be skewed because of individuals that may work for that company are heavily weighting it as a very quality product. And maybe the other people obviously I don't know exactly what percent of people review products, but if you are going on and you're the owner of the company and you're leaving a review a five star review saying it's great, that's, it becomes less of a review and more of a marketing tactic.

[00:17:31] Jacob: That's that. That's how I feel now. I guess for some reason, I don't have a problem if somebody from me Eater takes a backpack and then breaks it down like why it's a value. But they, but I guess when they technically start putting like Amazon five star reviews on something that's really part of their product or part of their co-promote, I feel like it's a little slight of hand.

But that was one of my issues. But my other issue was the price. I was really surprised about the sticker price of $355, and I pointed that out in a in a [00:18:00] poster or reply regarding this product. And so I got called out a little bit as part of the cancel culture. I was not a capitalist and and by the way, this was made in the U s A and veteran owned, and so it really, Dan, I'll be honest with you, it threw me back on my heels a little bit because that made me really think about am I, am I, is it wrong for me to see a made in the u s A product to get back to your original question to see something that's made in the u s a like wasp, broadheads, or. Marsupial Gear, Bino Harness or, and be like I should buy this because it's made in the u s a, even though, like this particular product, and I'm not talking about was or Marsupial, but this particular product was priced way outside of the marketplace.

Yeah. It was, in my opinion, way outside the marketplace and it wasn't presenting anything innovative. It, it really, like when I look at wasp, marsupial stone Glacier [00:19:00] Cafaro Vortex I think is a great example. Like when I see those companies in those products, I see companies that are within the con the price range of that particular category.

And I see them bringing some value or some innovation to the marketplace. And so I really had to stop and think about what is the value of made in the U Ss a. Veteran owned versus, buying something from China. But I don't know, Dan, what are your thoughts? Do you feel like, 

[00:19:30] Dan: so here's where I get off, or this is where I have my stance.

You take that tag off of there, there are some products, let me back up even further. I think a while ago, and I don't wanna put a time on it, but a while ago the whole made in China, or made in some Asian country had, there was a negative connotation because the quality used to be poor I'll just say it [00:20:00] used to be poor.

Yeah. But as time goes on and technology advances moore's Law for every technology every 18 months, I believe Moore's Law is every 18 months, technology doubles in. Whatever the metric there is for the application and then the price is reduced. So what you're seeing is a lot of people are going to China because it, you can still get or overseas manufacturing.

Yeah. In general you can get a quality product now there. Yeah. And so I, I am a firm believer that price does reflect quality these days. Because I feel like I. The stereotype of something being crap, if it's made in America, it's fa or if it's if it's made in China or overseas, is fading away because people understand that if you make a shit product, you will not be in business anymore if it's junk, [00:21:00] especially in the hunting industry, if you make products that are junk and they last four sits or one season, me personally, I'm not touching them, but I don't feel so but there's a price point for everybody, right?

Yeah. Our price point is gonna be different than someone who makes double our money in a year or, 50% less of what we make in a year or something like that. And so it, it really comes down to budget at that point. I like the fact that certain things are made in America. I do take it into consideration if there is.

I, if there is, let's just say, I don't know. The first thing that came to mind was broadheads. If there's a broadhead that's made in America and there is a broadhead that's made overseas, and they are, they're similar price point same type of technology. And and I don't know, the, I guess it would just be price point, material dur, durability, things like [00:22:00] that.

I'm gonna pick, I'm gonna pick the United States product because it's a no-brainer to me. It's like a duh. Why not pick an American made product if all things are, all other things are equal. Okay. And I would be willing to pay a little bit more if all things are equal. And the only difference is, I don't know.

Enter, enter your comfortable percentage here. You know what I mean? Just whatever more, you're just for peace of mind saying that, you know what, I really think that I like the fact that it's made in America. It supports American jobs and that, that stuff, I guess where I have the issue is, I don't know.

I I used to have an issue, but I don't think there's that big of an issue anymore. As long as the product holds up to what they're saying now. Like what you were getting at leaving reviews, like skewing the reviews. Yeah. I have a problem with that. I [00:23:00] don't care where it's made, whether it's made in America or it's made in China.

If you're skewing the reviews, that's a, that's an issue. But if, but also if it is just a brand that. A lot of these brands, they go for the cool guy factor. Hey, if you wanna be cool, you have to buy this product. If you wanna be in our club, you have to buy this product. Almost some like elitism type marketing strategy.

I'm not cool with that, and I'm not, I sure as shit. I'm not, I don't care who makes it. If you're out-priced of your category, if you're way overpriced in your category I am, I'm not gonna buy your product. I don't care where it's made, I don't care who owns it. 'cause I, everybody has a budget man.

And yeah. 

[00:23:47] Jacob: Yeah. No I think I'm gonna I think you brought up two things there, so I think that were interesting. One is the cool guy phenomenon, which I see and I'm sure other people see, where it's like, Hey, [00:24:00] we've got this product here, it's made in China, but we're gonna slap on the logo. And we're gonna sell it to you at a markup.

Which I can't stand. And that's one of the reasons why I do what I do in terms of, my channel in terms of product reviews and examinations. Because I'm like, let's take a look at this product from the influencer and this product from China and see, or this no name product and see how different they really are.

And is there value there? Another company that comes to a company that comes to mind that I'm gonna mention origin. Have you followed any of that stuff from that company? Yes. So 

[00:24:38] Dan: I've seen I might even follow 'em on Instagram. I'm not a hundred percent sure, but their big push is clothing that is made in America.

Correct? Correct. And they have a camo pattern too. They 

[00:24:50] Jacob: do, yes. Okay. And Cam Haynes is on board there. Yep. And so for me, I look at that company as an outsider. And I think, oh, that's [00:25:00] interesting. They're making, they're and they talk about bringing manufacturing back to the US and, apparel textile manufacturing.

And I think, again, that's important and I love that stuff, but I feel as a company, that's the, they're leading with that. And I think me as a consumer, I want to hear about innovation. I want to hear about value, I want to hear about something. When it comes to made in the u s a, again, if I look at exo mountain gear they make frame backpacks out of Idaho.

They're bringing innovation to the marketplace. And oh, by the way, we're made in the u s A or wasp broadheads make darn good broadheads, but oh, by the way, they're made in the U s A, so they're not leading with the u ss a dynamic. It's oh, by the way, vortex optics, we make really strong optics.

And oh, by the way, we're made in the U s A and I really personally, I think that's the way to go. If you know for companies that, that, obviously it's a selling point to us, but I think we're looking at [00:26:00] where's the value, where's the innovation? It's just, you're not gonna get me to buy Origin Camo just because it's made in the SS a I can't, I need to see more from them.

But yeah. Would you 

[00:26:10] Dan: agree? I don't know, man. It's so tough. I, because I'll tell you, this is how I make my purchases. I identify a need that I have. I go out and I research everything that I'm gonna spend my money on. I look for options. I'll put those options on a list. I will compare the list to each other, and then I will say, does this fill my need?

If all things are the same, right? And this product are. Close to each other in price, in or even if one's higher, but it's made in America, like I said, I'll probably try to I will actively try to buy u s a. But I'm not spending a ton more if it's ridiculously outside of its [00:27:00] range.

I'm not gonna, I'm not buying, I'm not gonna buy it. So I'm looking to fill a need. I understand that it's important to buy American, but I'm not blowing a budget to make that happen. 

[00:27:13] Jacob: So you mentioned Broadheads. I recently so Dan, I I've traditionally used MEChA or fixed Broadhead.

Fixed play Broadhead. Yep. I've shot iron wheels. I've shot cutthroats I mentioned the wasp. I shot a buck with a wasp a couple years ago and Arrow went through his. Through his vitals and then curved in such a way that it broke, it hit his femur. And so when I was processing that, dear Dan, it broke that femur clean in half and that broad head looked like it was brand new.

Yeah. And I was just so impressed now. But I don't I want to get I wanna get better blood trails. I'll be honest with you. I've I shot a dough a couple years ago with an iron will, and I'm literally like, I can't hardly find a blood trail. I know she's dead and I'm literally standing right next to her.

And I [00:28:00] don't even know it because of, it's, it was early season archery. And so I grabbed some some really cheap broadheads off of Amazon. They're called I think they're called Ke, K e a u t. K e a u P. I think I've got 'em over here somewhere here. Here they are. Here I'll show one to you and you tell me what this looks like.

And if you can see it. Yeah, 

[00:28:26] Dan: that looks like a rage. It looks a 

[00:28:28] Jacob: lot like a rage, right? Yep. They're for six of 'em, you get 20, you for $26, you get six of 'em, which is really about a quarter of the price of a rage. And I shot 'em, and I'm and the rage brought heads. They don't, they don't really say where they're made, like you, the packaging doesn't say, the website doesn't say, I've read on forums that they're made in the U S A, so this really isn't necessarily a U s A versus China thing.[00:29:00] 

But these are clearly made, these are made in China. They do state on the packaging and they were super cheap. And I've always wanted to try mess around with Amazon Broadheads. And so this is not a company that's like you would find a website for or anything like that. 

[00:29:13] Dan: It's purchased or it's manufactured by a company just to put it on Amazon.

I yeah. To compete directly with a similar product. A k a rage. Yeah. And so let me tell you something. Yeah. I've been to a lot of a t a shows. Okay. And there are people, and I'm gonna, I'm gonna stereotype here, and I hope I don't get canceled for this but there are people who are of Asian descent, I will say, going around, taking pictures of products at the a t a show.

Wow. And some people do not like that because they will take those pictures, they will take it back to China, they will make it, [00:30:00] and then they will sell it exactly like what you're talking about. And it was a big thing for a while to where. If you didn't have your patents on point, someone was gonna rip you off.

[00:30:11] Jacob: Wow. That's, I, that's really interesting. 'cause I've heard of that with the construction industry particularly happening to Caterpillar. Long story but similar thing where Asian descent people, that you they're there at the Caterpillar plant taking pictures and then, Yeah.

Manufacturing something very similar to undercut our products. But, yeah, so Dan, that, that brings up a really, that's a very interesting, bit of commentary there because, the way I look at it sometimes I feel like companies are send, are manufacturing products over there in China and bringing them back.

And then you have these companies that, to your point, are making something similar. I can tell you that these shot really well and. And it, what, [00:31:00] someone might not wanna purchase these because of what you just stated, but they shot really well. I was shooting these broadheads into some ballistic gel along with some other broadheads, the other mechanicals.

And these actually from penetration standpoint out penetrated the ballistic gel by two inches over the rages that I was shooting. And 

[00:31:21] Dan: so by, 

By two inches that's pretty substantial. If you asked me, two inches, if you hold it up isn't huge, but when it comes to penetration, that's whether or not it's gonna go out and create two holes or not, right?

[00:31:35] Jacob: Yeah. This was 19 inches of ballistic gel that I created in my kitchen, which was fun. And yeah, it was I think it wa it penetrated You penetrated, I think about 18 of those inches. So it didn't come out the other side of the ballistic gel. But the rage broadheads actually got to about 16 inches and these were at 18 inches.

And then I was looking at a Muzzy Broadhead and a sever broadhead as well. Yeah. But [00:32:00] yeah, so it's a it is, it's a very sticky sticky place. In terms of, from a product standpoint, like what do you buy and what do you support, and then how does it perform, when you shoot it.

[00:32:13] Dan: Because I'll tell you this, if I said to myself, I'm only buying American, and if there was a problem with an American product and it cost me a dear of a lifetime, I don't care if it was because of noise or performance or construct. I'm never gonna use it again. I will never use it again.

And that's why For me, I will say this, that I like the fact that wasp broadheads are made in America. I like that they're designed in America. I like the fact that they're made from some of the best material possible. All right. And the price is okay for me. Yeah. Even though full disclosure, I partnered with them.

But I've been using WASP Broadhead since 2006. I did skew [00:33:00] off of their heads for, I want to say a season or two in that, in, in this timeframe. But then, kept coming back to them and then I formed a partnership with 'em. So it's great. Outside of that, I really like if, but I'm comfortable and I'm confident.

It just so happens that they're made in America. And it's, it feels good. I'll be honest. It feels good to support a company that's made in America, but as far as function and need is concerned, if it's not meeting my need or if it's not functioning when I need it to function, then I'm gonna have to go looking somewhere else for that.

[00:33:39] Jacob: Yeah. No I hear you. And just for those that are listening that might be interested, from a performance standpoint, the sever broadhead, this is a sever 2.0 titanium that actually blew through the 19 inches of ballistic gel and was poking out, made an incredible wound channel.

And it's actually what [00:34:00] I'm gonna switch to this year, Dan. And it's purely based on performance. I do not know where the sever broadheads are made, but I like their design. The blade flares out and locks in place and and swivels, but stays locked as one blade what? Two inch blade?

And so I'm gonna give those a try. I'm still gonna keep a, a fixed blade broadhead in my quiver. Probably the cutthroats because of if you're in thick brush and you want to put a shot through something, you don't want that broadhead, that mechanical to deploy in mid-flight or whatever.

But no, I agree. Performance is everything. The good news is that there are a lot of made in the u s A products out there that are competitive and are performing well absolutely. 

[00:34:42] Dan: And so I, I'd really be interested to have you on, and I know you wanna shoot severed, but if you're ever gonna go on a dough hunt or a less important hunt, I'd love to see you shoot a deer with those Amazon deals, those those rage ripoffs, just to see what they do [00:35:00] on a deer.


[00:35:02] Jacob: All right. All right, Dan I'll give it a shot. I'll give it a shot. Like I said in, in September, dear season opens and I need to put some meat in the freezer. So there you go. There you go. 

[00:35:10] Dan: No we'll need a report back. But yeah, there's a lot of that, there's a lot of that happens, man.

There's a lot of ripping off in the industry. Whether their company their products are made in China or not. There's, there is a lot of I don't know. There's a lot of ripping off that happens now. I wanna talk about durability and for a second, because I from a clothing standpoint, I wear, I can't now I'm questioning myself.

I wear a brand called Arbor Wear. And Arbor Ware is a, I'm gonna just pull it up real quick. Arbor Ware is a co clothing company designed specifically for arborist guys who are climbing trees all day long. Guys who are cutting down trees, A R B O R, 

[00:35:59] Jacob: Arbor [00:36:00] Ware. 

[00:36:01] Dan: Alright, let's see here. Arbor

They should have, whether or not it, they're made in America. I can't, I forget if they are or not. I, there's something tells me they might be, anyway, a very durable product. And it's on the high end in price and but I've had some of their jeans now for seven years, some of their shirts for that, that long. So that tells me they are they're a good company. They're produced well, they're manufactured. They're manufactured. And yeah. So I what's your take on durability? Do you feel that products that are made in the if we're gonna go by the law of averages here, do you feel that products that are made in the United States perform or are more durable than than products not manufactured in the United States?

[00:36:52] Jacob: I'm looking at some of their, at some of their gear online. I pulled it up on my phone, Dan, and it looks, it's one of those [00:37:00] things that it looks like it's the original tree climber's gear. Yep. Is their motto. And it does, it looks, it has a look to it, even from the website.

It's just yeah, that looks like tough gear that you could really beat the hell out of and expect it to, last years. I, I. I took a deep dive into I, I've taken some, a deep dive into some other gear and like I've always, for years I had a vinyl harness from Badlands that was, and it was made in Vietnam.

Yep. And I went on elk hunts. I used it for whitetail. I've used it for everything and it's, I've beat the hell out of it, and it's done well, and I didn't know where it was made, Dan. Yeah. And I took a hard look at seven different harnesses earlier this year, because this is the year of the Bino harness.

And I did note in my evaluations, like, where are they made from? Where are they? And I, Badlands has a [00:38:00] new one. It's made in Vietnam again. Alaska Guide Creations has a really strong one. It's actually made in the U S A F H F gear, which is part of the Weater company made in the U s a marsupial gear, made in the U S A and really, those three right there are Alaska Guide Creations, F H F, and Marsupial.

You can, I think it is some of the fine detail. You can feel a little bit of a difference. You can see a little bit of a difference. I didn't really realize it until I started messing with them that like the F H F gear, FOB vinyl harness. Now it's really expensive, Dan. It's 180 bucks, but I'll be darned if it doesn't, like you can see and feel some of the craftsmanship and it's not my number one vinyl harness because it's so expensive.

Because in order to get a full kit, you're gonna have to buy some additional things to put on it, and it puts you over $210 for. For just your Bino harness. [00:39:00] But I was really impressed. Like I, I'll be honest with you, Dan, I know we've been talking about, China products being a little bit better than they used to be or whatever, but from a Bino harness standpoint, like that, Alaska Guide Creations RVIs, and I'm actually, I don't have it out here in front of me, but it is, it's, I'm gonna use some taglines that a lot of people use.

It's bombproof and it's overbuilt. Like it really is, it looks like something that I would buy from that Arbor gear or arbor ware that that you've been that you purchase. 

[00:39:30] Dan: So in that example, you're saying that it performs ma for category of Bino harness made in America, performs better and is more durable than not made in America?

[00:39:43] Jacob: I think one of the things is that it's very specific. So there was a brand called Spika, like we talked about the am made for just Amazon brands. And so there was an Amazon brand, spika Bino harness that maybe, five years ago Dan would've been an amazing [00:40:00] Bino harness, but this is, it was 60 bucks, but it didn't have the, and it was really well made and it a forward opening.

And I think we're, I think where us as Hunters can see the value in USA made goods is that when they're intu they're made with an intuitiveness for our needs as a hunter. So like the f h F gear, like I mentioned, like there's an intuitiveness there in terms of it, the sleek design, the some of the attachment points.

They, the people that the people that designed it know exactly what we need when we're on a western hunt or with the marsupial gear. Whereas if I look at something that's made by a company called Spika, where it's like I said, 60 bucks versus 180 bucks. Yeah, it's a vinyl harness. It could work and it's designed, it's a hunting vinyl harness, but it doesn't have the fine detail.

If I need to grab my rangefinder or grab my wind checker, or if I need to put my, attach my bear [00:41:00] spray, attach my pistol or where will I wanna put my phone? There's, we're starting to put so much gear in our vinyl harnesses these days. And so I think when it comes to something like maybe with the arbor ware or with something like vinyl harnesses, there is some, a lot of thought put into it about the needs of that particular hunter.

And I think it goes back to again, where's the innovation? Where's that value? And I see that with some of the U S A made vinyl hearts. 

[00:41:29] Dan: Gotcha. Gotcha. So I just looked up two as far as clothing manufacturers, and I believe I just saw that KU U is manufactured overseas and Sitka is manufactured actually in Montana.

I, it's what I'm reading here, I believe at some of their stuff is manufactured in Bozeman, Montana. Does that sound right?[00:42:00] 

[00:42:00] Jacob: I don't know. I don't, I'd actually have to grab a piece of of CIG gear and I think, look at the label, to be honest with you. 

[00:42:07] Dan: Yeah. Kudos to them and, so that could result in why Sitka is the highest, the, one of the highest costing camouflage.

I will tell you this, I. Their gear is outstanding. Ska, ska gear is outstanding. It is expensive, but it, some could say it's expensive for a reason. And it says here, where is ska clothing manufactured? Ska clothing is manufactured in Bozeman, Montana. Now, I'm not a hun. This is from a this is just to cite it Made

[00:42:43] Jacob: So I'm not 

[00:42:44] Dan: sure if that is, where is Sitka produced? It's based in,

let's see, 

[00:42:54] Jacob: retail store, Boardman. Yeah. I think that is, [00:43:00] if that's the case, we need to hear more about that from the Sitka of the world. Yeah. Because, I could justify spending a little bit more if, because not like we go back to the intuitiveness of the design. I think Sitka was really one of the first to come up with certain things for the whitetail hunter in terms of, a place for your grunt tube or whatever.

And so to me, I wouldn't, I would be open to spending a little bit more if I know that's, manufactured here in the U S A and the fact that we don't know is a problem, it seems like if it is or if only certain garments are, it would be nice for us to know about that and not have to, okay, 

[00:43:40] Dan: Here's some contradicting information though.


ums is mainly Sitka gear is mainly made overseas. Okay. Okay. Some items may be [00:44:00] manufactured in the US but as you'll read below, we had a good amount of difficulty learning more. So this is from a company called All, and they they basically did research there's this whole article about Sitka gear and it sounds like some of their products are made in the United States.

Yeah. Yeah. And most of it is probably made in the United States, and they show Sitka supplier lists. Oh, yeah. It looks like they got a hold of a list here and the company and their address is online and.

Yeah, these, some of these brands look like they are Yep. A lot of these companies look like they're in China or Asian countries. [00:45:00] They, some of, but there are other count. There are other cities in this list that like have California and New Jersey and Yeah. But a lot of 'em are, looks like Thailand and China and as far as their supplier right now.

Yeah. One thing people gotta watch out for, and I used to work for a company called Wicked Tree Gear. Every single piece of that product was manufactured in China, but it was brought, it was assembled in the United States, so that allowed us. To put a United States sticker on it that said, assembled in the United States.

So people at first glance will look at it and go, oh, it's a u s A product. In, in, in all reality, it's not, it's everything is made overseas. And then it was assembled in the United States. So yeah. 

[00:45:52] Jacob: That's pretty slick. I don't care for that. I, it makes me wonder though I know you're a big user and a big fan of the [00:46:00] Acorn cruncher.

I don't, like if you check where, see where that's 

[00:46:02] Dan: made. Yeah. I don't know. I'm guessing. I don't like, that was probably made in some dude's backyard, I'll be honest, using 2, 2, 2 liter bottle caps. That's how he made them. From, but what I'm getting at here is, okay, so we have two of the most elite camo brands with Ku U and Sitka.

Yeah. They cost the most money and they're made overseas, but at the same time they're, and I've had my hands on Ku U and I've had my hands and I've worn Sitka and they are some of the highest caliber the best manufactured you, you can just look and hold these products. Now there's other products like Hunt worth out there that Yeah, are very close to Sitka and they're very close to ku.

They're not a hundred percent the way there, but they're very close and about 50% of the cost. So I feel like those types of brands are catching up just from [00:47:00] sheer volume of the clothing they sell, just be because of the price point. 

[00:47:04] Jacob: Yeah. I was gonna mention Hunt Worth, I think for Low is another sort of hunting company that's touted really big time made in the U Ss a technical clothing.

And there's a lot of options out there I think, I don't know about Pneuma. I know they're out of Texas, but I don't know where their products are made, but I know for Forough, for a fact is made in the u s A. So if that's really important to, folks that are out, listening then I would encourage them to look at that company.

[00:47:33] Dan: One thing that, I know, this is off topic of Made in America at this point, but one, one thing that I would really like to look into is direct to consumer. And what, how direct to consumer impacts. So if you compared all these products and one of 'em was sold in a chain store and the reason that companies say direct to consumer is so they can use the line, we're cutting out the middleman, right?

[00:48:00] We're not having our retail price isn't going to have to be marked up because We have to make our margins and so does the retailer. They have to make their margins. So we're cutting out. But one thing that I've noticed on some of these direct to consumer companies is that the prices are still the are roughly the same.

So they're just making bigger margins. So what they've done is they usually, what happens is they come into the industry, they say they're direct to consumer. They start with products that are lower, right? Yeah. They're, they start with products that are lower price, but then eventually they, to make more money and to make more profit they're bringing that, that retail price point closer to the, their competitors' price points that are sold in retail locations.

So they're just basically making bigger, a bigger dollar amount, but still saying they're cutting out the middleman, but, [00:49:00] That's great that you're cutting out the middleman, but if your margins are still bigger, then you're not helping out the consumer like you say you are. 

[00:49:08] Jacob: I think Dan, I think everybody wants to be a Yeti type custom company where you sell a, a high-end product because there's no, every one of these companies that we talk about is a for-profit company, right?

And they have to decide like, how do we make the highest margins? And so you look at like a Yeti and obviously Yeti innovated the cooler space, but they but Yeti does what really they do so well is marketing. And it's we can make more money if we promote ourselves as high-end, like high-end Broadhead or Highend, whatever, hunting product as opposed to competing on price.

At the other end of the market. So we're gonna spend more, we're gonna invest more on marketing than these other companies, and therefore we're gonna carve out a space in the hun in the hunter's [00:50:00] mind that, oh, this is, the Yeti, this is the thing that from a status standpoint, this, camel pattern sets me apart, makes me look like the hunters that I see on YouTube, the hunters that I see on Instagram, and I'm part of that club.

And it's that tribalism that we've talked about, the emotions that we've talked about. And so it really, it's so important that us as consumers take that time to pull back and say, what is it that we really wanna accomplish here? Do we need the status symbol and do we need to spend more money to be part of that club?

I mentioned broadheads. If you say anything bad about iron will broadheads online on a forum, you'll get 15 guys that. Think you're a moron. I mean it's really and you know that, that is, those broadheads are the most, they're like $33 a head. Like I was showing you the rage broadheads at, or the rage knockoffs at, they're, I got 24 of 'em, or I got six, six of 'em for 25 bucks.[00:51:00] 

It's $33 for one Iron Wheel Broadhead. And but he has positioned that product and it's a, and it's a great product don't get me wrong. Yeah. It is it's, it's made of a two tool steel, like it's a screwdriver in terms of it's composition. And I have some problems with that type of steel, but I won't get into that.

But they positioned it themselves as the Yeti and therefore guys are willing to spend more, but they're also part of that club now. Yeah. And so as a company, I think that you have to decide which path are we going. Are we gonna spend more on marketing and in a solid product, but more on marketing to position ourselves as the Yeti?

Or are we gonna compete on price? And that's a race to the bottom in some ways. Yeah. 

[00:51:46] Dan: I don't know, man. It just, here's the thing though about the hunting industry, right? Everybody's marketing for coolness. Everybody's saying our product's better than this. Our product's the best.

Give our product a try. I [00:52:00] don't give a shit what brand you wear, what broad head you shoot, you will never become a better hunter based off of your gear, period. I don't give a shit if you're wearing like a swim, swimming suit into the tree stand products will not make you a better hunter period.

And so If you're gonna be real and honest about everything, it doesn't matter what your gear is. Yes, some gear is manufactured better, but at, un under, I'll even just say 30 yards, depending on your setup. And I know there's so many things that we could, we know we could unroll and unpack and keep continuing.

But as a bow hunter, if you shoot a deer at 20 yards, I don't give a shit what broad head you're using. It's going to. And you put it in their lungs and you put it in their heart. Yeah. In the vitals that deer will die. I [00:53:00] don't care. I don't care what your arrow set up. I don't care. If you're wearing a clown suit in the tree stand, if you stay still and you're not jumping around like a maniac, you're gon, you, there's a chance you could get a shot at a deer.

And so take that with a grain of salt. I'm very serious about my gear. I'm very serious how I make my decisions, but I will at the end of the day, blue Jeans flannels, like camo wasn't even a thing for hunters until the end of World War ii, I believe it was. Yeah. Nobody wore camouflage out in the woods until all of these vets came home from World War ii, didn't have anything to do.

So they all started hunting, wearing their fatigues, and that's where camo was invented. Yeah. As far as the camo that we see today. Yeah, 

[00:53:55] Jacob: I, it sounds like you're challenging me to wear a u s a made clown suit [00:54:00] when we go hunting. And Dan, I'll be honest with you, it might be a bridge too far, but I'll see what I can do.

[00:54:06] Dan: So you gotta shoot a China made broadhead in an American made clown suit. Things are getting interesting. Things are getting interesting over here. 

[00:54:15] Jacob: Oh 

[00:54:15] Dan: gosh. Outside of that man we've been talking about almost an hour now. Any, anything else that we need to unpack as far as made in America products A and oversee, let me ask you this.

Let me tell you this. Yeah. I believe crispy boots are made in Italy. Yes. One of the highest quality boots there are. I agree. So the fact that I feel like a lot of it depends on category. If it's soft goods, I don't know if boots are considered soft goods, but like clothing and stuff like that, if it's made in Italy or if it's made I have a pair of pants.

They were not cheap [00:55:00] from Fall Hall, Raven. I think their Norway, I. Or Denmark is where the, they're manufactured very high quality. Those are for mountain climbers very high quality pair of pants. And so I have a pair of those. I have crispy boots made in Italy, very high quality product. So just because something's not made in America it doesn't mean that the quality I is gonna suffer.

[00:55:26] Jacob: Yeah, I would agree. I think there's there's a rifle crap, I can't remember. Benelli. 

[00:55:32] Dan: What's that? Benelli, 

[00:55:32] Jacob: maybe there be yeah. Benelli, Italy. And then RA I think it's made in Spain. Okay. I think that's a rifle. I think that might, I might be missing that name up, but No, I would agree with you, Dan.

I think there's some definitely some companies out there that are making really good products and I know we pick on, Asia, China, those sorts of things. But like when it comes to Italian boots, There's no, you mentioned stereotypes. That, stereotype's there for a reason.

Boots, shoes, out of Italy generally, they've been doing [00:56:00] that for a long time and they're generally experts at it. So I would agree with you. I have a couple pair of Krispies I've, now, I will say I've replaced the insoles. The insoles are like paper thin, but but yeah, they're absolutely awesome boots.

And I've I wore a pair of bra, I can't remember the name of 'em, but they were a lot less expensive and more disposable, and I regretted it. And now I'm, wearing these crispies and I'm really pleased with their performance, especially as it relates to just like the waterproofing dynamic.

Yeah. Like it's I haven't had any issues with my feet getting wet, yeah. Yeah. 

[00:56:33] Dan: Solid products. Yeah, absolutely. Anything else before we shut her down? Any final thoughts? No. 

[00:56:40] Jacob: I think it is just again, it's on us as consumers to not get by bought into these to give into our emotions.

To buy based on tribalism. It's really important that we take a hard look at, the performance, the value, the innovation at a product category. And Dan I appreciate you having me on. I continue to put [00:57:00] content out there focusing on value and performance on my YouTube channel, which is Jay Koons Hunts and on my Instagram feed, which is the same moniker.

And but yeah, I appreciate the conversation and I appreciate you having me 

[00:57:14] Dan: on. Absolutely, man. We'll definitely do it again and I appreciate your time and if I don't talk to you before season starts, good luck in that clown suit and good luck with that Amazon Broadhead, man. 

[00:57:26] Jacob: Thanks, man. I appreciate it.

I'll let you know how it goes.