Thank you Henry for notifying me of this thread. I am the OEM Sales Manager for Easton and want to address this issue. Henry is correct in that we spent significant time looking for ways to improve the stake head fit to help them stay on better. I will say that although some of the old style cap have been problematic, we have had comparatively few complaints actually reported to us so it is hard to know what the actual failure rate of the old style caps were. From everything we can tell, it wasn't a huge problem, but was something that needed to be improved.
What we have been able to determine with the old cap is that if the cap slips ever so slightly between the time the caps are installed and the adhesive is cured (they are heat cured in an oven) it creates a gap between the stake and the end of the cap that lacks the metal on metal contact needed to take the impacts from being hit with a hammer, rock, etc. Fully seated caps can take a massive beating without failure. We have done extensive testing on this, having completed many man weeks of destructive testing in our factory and in the field to learn more about the ins and outs of what causes the caps to fail.
Here is what we did to address this on all new revised cap stake designs:
*Added a press fit feature in addition to the existing adhesive at the back of the cap to hold it in the fully seated position while the adhesive cures.
*Implemented a 100% hand length sort to pull out any that don't meet the fully seated length requirement.
We concluded that by doing all of this we should expect a significant reduction in the number of failures in the field. Due to the abusive nature of how tent stakes are used, you will never eliminate failures 100% but I can attest that the new design is more robust than the old one.
If anyone has any problems, we certainly apologize and want to stand behind our product. Please let us know at 800-800-6686. We certainly will make it right and replace any stakes that lose their caps. Your feedback is crucial to helping us make our products better.
Sales Manager, Tubing and OEM Products