I agree about the power comment for sure.
When I started in this, my goal was to push as much power as I could and make it survive. Now I am moving slightly in the other direction. I am looking toward lighter weight, a bit lower power, but much less costly. I am already in the ultra high-end. I do not need to add anything there. What I need to do is appeal to the more user friendly and easier to install market (high or low cost, as long as it can appeal to a larger market) at least for now.
I have been looking at other motors, not to replace Astros, but as a lower cost option to add to the Astros in my line. I have found a few (no I am not saying what they are right now). They are not the cheapo chinese crap, but they are not as costly as Astros either. I have found that 2.5kw peak, 1kw continuous can be had in a super high quality motor for $150 to $190 depending on the motor. But, there are a few issues there that I will not get into right now. I also get requests for the $1,100 Plettenberg Terminator to install in my drives. The Astro is a better motor (better performing) but does not look as cool. So, a few people with means look in that direction.
Basically, I look for quality in what I am paying. Here is one totally off topic example;
I am looking for a 400 to 500 psi compressor for my air cannons. Well, those compressors range from $800 to $1,700. I have some disposeable money, but not that much...... So, I began doing some research. What I finally came up with is a two stage compressor setup using a small shop compressor precharging a tank feeding into a refrigerator compressor as a second stage. This setup is very quiet, light weight, can reach way over the 500 psi I am looking for, and will cost me under $200 when I am finished and this is using a pressure tested, production tank that is safe.
I guess what I am driving at is, if you do some research and are able to build stuff, you can really save some serious coin. That is where Kim is coming from. He can build anything and is on a tight budget. Some people can't build anything and have a lot of cash. To each his own. I think the mainstream of the public are tight on money right now, however. I cannot make a drive that competes in cost with cheapo chinese hubbies. But, I can move in the direction that is more cost effective. Developing high-end performance makes the lower power stuff easier to build and leads to better innovation. That is the reason auto manufacturers have big racing budgets.
1% of the world's population can think "Outside the box". The rest are firmly stuck within the box. Where are you?