R&D Performance Products – Gone But Not Forgotten

 Back on September 27th, 2018 the guys at R&D Performance Products shuttered the doors. For more than 30 years R&D was a go to source for performance enhancements for all makes of Personal Watercraft. 

Although this should not come as a huge surprise with the rising costs of manufacturing and looming trade wars that see metal prices all over the spectrum. Let’s face it, California isn’t known to be easy for manufacturing and there are 1000’s of performance parts that can’t be sold in California for recreational use.

Somehow through all of this Glenn Dickinson and Bill Chapin still managed to put out some of, if not “the” best performance products for personal watercraft for over 30 years. Bill Chapin, formerly a Performance Jet Ski Technician, mostly handled the testing and development of new products and most of this happened from his home. Glenn Dickinson was the guru of manufacturing and product handling out of their California warehouse.

Their exit was with little fanfare and if not for a small press release, many of their retailers and a few distributors would not have even known about the closing. The R&D Facebook page made no mention but not a big surprise as they didn’t update Facebook that often.

We do have some hope from the press release:

It is with sincere regret we inform you that, as of September 27, 2018, R&D Racing Products has decided to close its doors. All available products on order will ship until the final day. It is our upmost priority to inform you about this decision as you are one of our most regarded customers. R&D Racing Products has been a front runner in the watercraft industry for over 30 years, and we are extremely proud of what we have accomplished during that time. We could not be more thankful to those of you who have believed in us and contributed to our success over the years. As our industry has evolved, we look forward to a semi-retirement and the possibility of exciting new endeavors. It has been a great pleasure doing business with you and we thank you for your patronage.

Our sincerest regards,
Glenn Dickinson”

Glenn did not commit to a full closure but said “semi-retirement” instead. Hopefully they take some time off, regroup, and get back in the saddle. There are some alternatives such as Riva and Worx, but R&D is the original and their products spoke for themselves.