The most frustrating thing about the OJ review (and please understand I have the greatest respect for you and the rest of the OJ team, you produce a quality mag, with some top grade articles and superb pictures) was the lack of winch variation. Back in the good old days of Peterson's for example, every article was tarred with the same brush "The best kit in the world is made in the US" when in reality SOME of the best kit is made in the US but it's a big old world! Your winch article had a taste of that flavour.
As I said, the range was simply too small (and once again please note I have huge respect for you guys - the thought of having one of my articles published in OJ would be as good as it gets). Where were the greats like the X9, the EP9, KingOneTDS, T-max Outback?
I'm not going to go into other nit picking details as I know just how difficult it is to get this sort of thing right. What was good (and this is what should be concentrated on) was the use of technical data, the specific rope, the specific alternator, the load cell. All this worked for me because it creates as level a playing field as possible.
I do think it's time you guys started to look at real world budgets and the fact that foriegn countries can make superb stuff (if asked to do so). The EP9, TDS and now the Talon are so ahead of the rest of the world in design (and build quality apart from one or two minor issues)
It would also be worth talking to the guys in 'the know'; as an expert in the field you will be more aware than most of just how much an expert doesn't know. I find that talking to people helps fill in the gaps. In this world of electronic medium it's easy to talk. Yesterday alone I swapped info with fellow off road instructors/guides in South Africa, Australia and Russia (albeit my Russian colleague was swapping cooking menus).
Last time we did a tyre test this was how we chose what makes to test....
Let me finish with saying this. I refered to your OJ article as poor. This was not an insult it was a judgement based on considerable experience. I also reffered to the other winch article as poor - I was wrong on both counts. I should have said that the content of the OJ article was poor for OJ, a magasine that does truly set the standards for other to attempt to emulate. The other winch article was actually utter ****. The two were as far apart as it is possible to be whilst still being on the same planet.
As a writer on things 4x4 I have a reputation for saying what I think, I am often in trouble for telling the truth as I see it with little or no subtlty; so I apologise if I have offended you.
City and Guilds Off Road Driving Assessor
City and Guilds Winching and Recovery Assessor
City and Guilds Off Road Trailer Handling Assessor
Lantra Off Road Driving Instructor and Assessor
Lantra Winching Instructor and Assessor
BORDA Off Road Driving Instructor
Land Rover Experience Senior Instructor (ret)
Land Rover Experience Winching Instructor (ret)