Oozing Goo - The Lava Lamp Syndicate

Lava Lite called me today!!! They plan on bringing back production to the USA :D

Caught me totally off guard but I spoke to a very nice guy, Asher.  He was calling in response to one my e-mails I had sent them a few moths ago about how much I dislike their current product line.  We spoke for about 20 minutes before he had to go.  I thoroughly voiced my opinions on why I haven't bought a lava product since 2005.  First thing I said was, you guys sold so many lamps in the 90s for a reason.  He agreed and said they have plans to re-launch the Midnight, Silver Streak, Elek-trick, and Safari Series in 2013.  He said he has been trying very hard to get production back to the USA since last year.  He said things are looking good and hopefully they will begin production here in the first half of 2013.

I told him that myself and MANY OTHERS would gladly pay the $50 price for a premium product again. I also mentioned that they need to bring back more color combinations and give their customers more choices.  He said he they are working on that again.  They have plans to bring back MOST of the 90s product line  I told him that its a shame I can't go into a store and buy a lava lamp that flows properly.  He said the current (2012) China lamps can ALMOST match the USA ones.  I said by no means will I ever buy one of those again and I buy from eBay.  He begged me not to buy from eBay, and I said then you know what you guys need to do.

Finally, he asked me to send him pictures of what I'd like to see.  I sent him pictures of all the 90s boxes I have (Midnight, Elek-trik, Lava Classics, Silver Streak, Midnight Centurues)  

He offered to make me a 90s Enchantress with yellow liquid and red lava to prove they can still replicate the 90s formula.  I said sure, but we'll see.  

He also said that he was fired back in 2002 when production began overseas and was just recently hired back.  Said he worked in the Chicago factory in the 70s, 80s, and 90s.  

I'm taking all of this with a huge grain of salt but it means progress.  Perhaps all of us unhappy lava collectors finally got through to them throughout the years.  I sure hope so.  I'll update this thread if I hear back from him.

PLEASE EVERYONE - E-MAIL THEM AND SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS!!!  Perhaps next year we'll have a quality product again.  

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To know that they are revamping their warehouse and setting it up for production is quite exciting.  It indicates that they are serious about improving quality, something that they apparently haven't been able to do with China production.  That has been a 10 year failed experiment.  Whether they can bring back a specific formula or not at least they will be directly in charge of making the formula, not depending on and hoping that their China subcontractor will actually use the formula with correct ingredients.  (I think that is where the problem has been, the manufacturing plant substituting sub-standard material to save cost)  I look forward to a broad variety of colors, both in globes and bases.  I also think that specialty lamps with a cultural tie-in have their place, such as the Vandor lamps, as well as Spongebob, Barbie, or Bob Marley, just not at the expense of standard lamps.

My first choice would be midnight centuries in all colors, along with gold and silver (or chrome) centuries.  Grandes with more color options are up there on my list too.  :)

I wonder why they didn't use the correct formula when production when to China. That's what baffles me. They HAVE the magic formula, but didn't use it. I'm confused. 

Perhaps they did, but with different equipment it somehow got altered?  The glass bottles they use with the China lamps even have a small haze to them.  Maybe the China equipment melted the wax differently or something.  I'm betting that's what happened.  That or they went with cheaper formulas.  

Erin said:

I wonder why they didn't use the correct formula when production when to China. That's what baffles me. They HAVE the magic formula, but didn't use it. I'm confused. 

The problem was the chinese manufacturers were basically using cheaper materials or altering the formula to cut costs despite what lava lite instructed them to do. Why they put up with it for so long is beyond me, but this is what I have been saying for a while so I am not surprised.

Well kudos to LL for supplying more Americans with jobs!!!  Will gladly buy lamps from them again knowing I'm supporting American workers.  

This 100%
This earns them major respect in my books.

MattMJB0188 said:

Well kudos to LL for supplying more Americans with jobs!!!

Amen to that!

MattMJB0188 said:

Well kudos to LL for supplying more Americans with jobs!!!  Will gladly buy lamps from them again knowing I'm supporting American workers.  

If they need any of their old US stock bottles they should come talk to me.  Brand new, never been used, many with a coil in them already.

I know I am going way out there with this, but it would be magnificent to see an updated Enchantress Planter in a bunch of weird choices. 

Okay so... I have been talking with Lava Lite and here is what I have learned. First of all, the talk about the companies employees not caring about their product is bunk. After speaking with Lava Lite it has become apparent that they do take pride in what they make. As for why they let things go poorly for so long, I do not know that.




I personally do believe it has been China manufacturers screwing around trying to cut costs that caused the cruddy lamps. As for why they let it go on so long, like I said earlier... I dont know. The constant struggle with quality control is obviously part of the reason why they are leaving China.




As for moving back to the USA this is going to take time obviously. Matt said it is expected to happen in the first half of next year. Considering what they have to go through its amazing they will get things running that fast. I am thinking they had made up their mind a while back, but they just didnt tell anyone until they were sure it was going to happen. They bought the new warehouse, they rebought their old equipment, and they are sourcing bottle manufacturers. I was told that the remaining glass factories capable of making the globes are already running at full capacity and that the amount of glass factories went from hundreds to three. 200 -->3. That is just how the economy is these days. Let me directly quote from the CEO of Lava Lite. "
Made in USA is the ultimate goal."




Okay now for the stuff you guys have been waiting for. New products! All photos posted below are uploaded as individual photos on my account page so check there for updates on a specific item. At 17" tall this makes it a 32oz lamp. It comes in 2 color finishes(maybe?). The flow in the actual product looks decent.


First up, the new Zebra. 








Next up, the new neon lamp. I dont know anything about them, but here is a nice photo. Look at that serpentine flow with all of those little drips down the side, you can't get that out of those old china lamps!



Not a lava lamp... but here is their Lava Lounge! Neat right? I think this is their new warehouse.



 Here is a shot of their new storage facility. I have a short video pan of the warehouse and it is huge. I dont feel like uploading it right now.



And finally, the best part. A new lamp. Not just a 32oz shrink-rayed, but a new design that stays true to the original lava shape. It seems to be sitting on some sort of plastic or glass ring instead of the typical metal cup todays lamps sit on. I dont know anything else about them though. D:









The neons are suppose to be Spencers only exclusive lamps at select stores.

Autumn, this is great news.  Who did you speak to?  Did he have kind of a thick middle eastern accent?  Are above photos what they have in mind once they bring production home?  If so, I'm not really liking it.   As I told him, they need to re-launch 90s lamps with the same name.  I HATE the current packaging too.  Well a least they are on the right track.

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