Inflatable / February 3, 2019 / Esperanza Langlais
Inflatables came very much into the public eye as architectural and domestic object when synthetic material became commonplace. Iconic structures like the US Pavillion on the 1970 Osaka Expo by Davis and Brody and Victor Lundys travelling pavillion for that Atomic Energy Commission popularized the idea that inflatables can be a way to build large structures with very extendend interior spans without pillars. These nice hopes for inflatable structures would later be dashed by the many practical difficulties faced by inflatable buildings such as climatization safety sensitivity to wind and fire proofing that currently restrict their use to very particular circumstances.
But as with most things in life things change. In the last five years most U.S. "manufacturers" have thrown in the towel and are no longer making their own Inflatables. Theyre now importing China made Inflatables and passing them off as "Made in the U.S.A." In addition a new breed of internet phonies are posing as "manufacturers" and selling "China made Inflatables" or acting as a distributor for some other inflatable company importing from China. The fact of the matter is there are only a few manufacturers left that still build their entire product line of Inflatables right here in the good old U.S.A. Its more expensive but far superior in durability. And yes in spite of what you have been told there is a big difference in Safety Quality Craftsmanship.
The next option requires a slightly bigger operation. It is the full-time event inflatables rental company for personal or business use. This inflatable company type requires you and a group of employees (or family members) to run events such as church VBS groups corporate picnics and kids events school carnivals and other such happenings. The process is similar to that of the backyard rental company except you can buy bigger and better inflatables. Ive seen these companies have everything from a giant slide to a full-scale bouncy obstacle course. Of course these events must be manned by a staff of inflatable operators to make each even possible which means employees and a different tax bracket. Also you will need vehicles to haul the heavy inflatables equipment to maintain them and process repairs advertising and marketing efforts in your area and a lot more time than a weekend or two a month. Next there are the pay-for-play companies.