I hope this finds everyone doing well and starting to see the light at the end of the long pandemic tunnel where you are. This is another long over due update on the progress of the Kipper2K replacement keyboard project as well as some changes to AOTL.
My desired plan in late fall of 2020 was to get all preorders shipped by the end of 2020. Then I would build up stock of both variants of the keyboard to offer them on Amiga On The Lake’s site for general sale.
Unfortunately that didn’t materialize as intended. We experienced a long delay in the delivery of new stabilizer mechanisms from China which is essentially the only place you can get them in large quantities affordably. In retrospect I should have placed the order much earlier than I did but I didn’t realize just how long the transaction would take to complete.
As we continue on in are fifth year of operation we have been faced with making needed changes to facilitate growth and to maintain and improve customer service. One of these changes is moving inventory and the packing activities to a larger space. That space will no longer be in the same building as the business office as it has been since our beginning in 2016. We are moving it to a dedicated building that offers room to grow and facilitates a more efficient layout for processing and packing orders. This move is ongoing and should reach its conclusion in mid April.
In this same spirit I have initiated changes to the production area I use to construct the Kipper2K keyboards. This space is too small as it is currently configured. I am making a number of improvements and reorganizing the available space to speed up the building and testing of the keyboards.
As this is a part time endeavor for both myself and Aaron there have been brief but frequent interruptions in normal day to day AOTL business related to the previously mentioned activities. That of course also affects my progress on the keyboards. However that doesn’t affect our resolve to deliver them all to the remaining preorder customers. The current plan is to accomplish that by the end of June of this year, 2021.
General sale of the keyboards will commence sometime in July. The stock will be replenished as I build up batches of each keyboard variant (A500 and A1200). So there will be times of zero stock until I can replenish inventory as is the case with many of our other products that experience lead times from their sources. With an improved production process those zero stock periods should be short and infrequent.
That certainly wasn’t a nutshell version of events here at AOTL but it helps bring you up to date of what has happened and what’s to come. My late New Years resolution will be to produce these updates much more frequently in this blog space.
In my next update I’ll cover why this keyboard will not be offered as a kit as many have been asking for. I’ll also give an update on the changes going on here at AOTL.