Comparison: Eosin Panther vs Black Belt Shop

Dirty Dog

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In the past year, I've gotten belts from two sources: Eosin Panther and Black Belt Shops. The experiences were quite different, so I thought I'd share.

The Belts:
Eosin Panther: 4th and 6th Dan. One end has the persons name in English and Korean (on opposite sides) and the other has "Taekwondo Moo Duk Kwan" in English and Korean. Both ends have rank stripes. The belts are extra thick because to accommodate the double sided embroidery they basically make two belts and then put them together around a core. The "soft" core option was chosen so they're not quite so difficult to tie when they're new.

Black Belt Shop: 1st and 2nd Dan. One end has the persons name and the other "Taekwondo Moo Duk Kwan" in English. Translation services is available, but no double sided embroidery. Each end also has rank stripes.

You can, of course, chose belt size and width on ordering, as well as the color of the embroidery.

The service:

Eosin Panther had the belts completed and in my hands in about 2 weeks. There was a spelling error (totally my fault) on one. When I contacted them, they had the corrected belt to me in 4 days, in time to be presented.

Black Belt Shop took five weeks to deliver the belts. During that time I sent no less than 3 e-mails requesting an update on the order. Those e-mails were ignored.

The price:

In round figures, the belts from Black Belt Shop totaled $100 and the two from Eosin Panther $440. A big part of that difference is the double sided embroidery, since (as mentioned) they're basically making four belts and then combining them.

I did a quick check, and it looks like a single-sided embroidered belt from Eosin Panther costs about $100. Roughly double the price compared to Black Belt Shop.

The subjective:

The Black Belt Shop belts look and feel like the sort of belt that comes with a new dobak when you first join a school.

The Eosin Panther belts look and feel like a much higher quality product.

Overall, I'd say that there's no doubt Eosin makes a better product. But they're certainly a more expensive one, too. Is it worth it? That depends. I think for something that will likely only be worn for a year or two, it's probably not worth the expense. But for upper ranks, when you're going to be wearing it for a long time, then maybe so.

However, the difference in service was enormous. I would certainly order from Eosin Panther again. Black Belt Shop? No thanks.
 

dvcochran

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A fair amount of speculation here, The Eosin belts sound like pure cotton belts. They are very supple, comfortable, and easy to tie from day one. However, being cotton they fray quickly giving a premature "aged & experienced" look. I do not remember seeing one that wasn't black. The Black Belt Shop belts you describe sound like the blended belts you get from Century, Tiger Claw or AWMA. Very durable, good all around belts but, as you said not particularly formal.
Back in the day I heavily used Choi Brothers because they were great at embroidery and had several different styles. I cannot say if that is still true but I would recommend checking them out if you have future needs.
 

WaterGal

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How would they compare with something like Dynamics or Century?
 
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Dirty Dog

Dirty Dog

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How would they compare with something like Dynamics or Century?

I've know nothing about Dynamics.
I've bought any number of things from Century, and their products and service have always been top notch, but as far as I know they do not offer an embroidery service.
 

WaterGal

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I use Dynamics for belts. The belt quality is so-so (mine is frayed and faded after 3 or 4 years), but they're less expensive than either of those options, at least with a wholesale account. I don't know what translation service they offer; I always send them the hangul I want embroidered on it. The turnaround time is I think usually 1-2 weeks. Their customer service is, in general, not great, but they're cheap and have good TKD selection.

I'm on Century's FB group, and I've seen a number of posts about their embroidery service. I get the impression that the turn-around time is longer, though. Their customer service is, from what I've seen, much better than Dynamics, but I've never ordered anything customized from them.
 

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