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Author Topic: The sad decline of the model shop  (Read 59183 times)

Rottweiler

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #50 on: June 14, 2014, 08:31:51 PM »

Well said Unbuiltnautilus! this reminds me of the saying "you cant please all the people all the time" It must be impossible to stock every possible variation  of an item all the time. I always try to support my local shop before trying online.Biggest problem now is I dont have a local shop within 15 miles and that is for mainly aircraft stuff rather than boats.
 As a person I have dealt with and met on a personal basis,and in my opinion you are most helpful obliging  of people,so take no notice mate!
(please make it a personal cheque!)

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Neil

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #51 on: June 14, 2014, 08:38:14 PM »

Well I make it a rule not to get involved in this sort of character assassination these days but I feel I need to respond.


I take offence at the statement that I couldn't care less. I certainly do care, and will continue to do so until you lot grind me down to nothing.  long way to go yet though.

well said, and good luck in this climate of constant faceless on the cyberspace wingers............bet they didn't speak to you about their disappointment face to face..............no! didn't think so...............well I for one will always use the model shop when I can and have breath in my body.........much better than faceless contact.

again good luck and best wishes. neil.
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Brian60

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #52 on: June 14, 2014, 08:38:29 PM »

Last time I was in a model shop I picked up some Billings parts in bags with very old price stickers on, I mean old! Took them to the counter and they guy nearly had a fit-'where did you find these?' On the hooks over at the back I replied.

Turned out 4 years earlier he had bought up the stock of the best model shop in Hull when it went bust, it was there stock complete with very old price stickers :} He grudgingly sold me the 5 bags I had selected at the price but made sure I knew I was buying them at a 1 a bag less than his newer stock :-))

Never used the place since and never will- I'll stick to using decent shops like Cornwall Model Boats etc online, the postal service can get me most stuff in 48 hours. Must say that I've never tried to get anything delivered to Spain yet, but thats another story!

Colin Bishop

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #53 on: June 14, 2014, 09:01:00 PM »

If you don't have a local shop and need to use the internet then give your business to the small scale UK suppliers instead of ordering sub standard stuff from China or Ebay. We have some very good UK retailers who give excellent service at very reasonable prices and they should be supported.

Colin
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craig dickson

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #54 on: June 14, 2014, 09:07:05 PM »

For my part, the model shop that I first visited 40 years ago, remains a shop under the same family ownership as was then. And I still visit it today for well stocked products and good friendly advice from the owner that I have known for years.


I like the fact that I can feel, touch and see the products. And if you have a problem you can go back and get it sorted face to face. Now having said that, it is my opinion that retailers really must if not already doing so, embrace and capture the on line market by way of a good website that not only promotes themselves, but which allows for product sales on line in a way that makes it easy to buy.


It is my personal opinion that the best model shop of tomorrow will be the one that retains a bricks and mortar shop, with the stock and knowledgeable staff, but with a significant on line presence. It is a mistake to ignore the power of the internet.


Craig




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Brian60

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #55 on: June 14, 2014, 09:07:51 PM »

If you don't have a local shop and need to use the internet then give your business to the small scale UK suppliers instead of ordering sub standard stuff from China or Ebay. We have some very good UK retailers who give excellent service at very reasonable prices and they should be supported.

Colin

Now that raises a second thorny topic Colin. You can certainly do that and it is what I do as mentioned earlier. However when you use some suppliers and your goods arrive marked up and also in packaging marked 'Made in China' and with a sizable mark up on Chinese ebay prices, people are going to order from China!

I have looked at online arms of well known model shops (I've seen an advert in Model Boats) and seen for instance 540 motors that they advertise as Chinese at twice the price you can buy from chinese ebay sellers. OK you may have to wait a week or 10 days for delivery but in todays economic climate whats a few days wait?

radiojoe

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #56 on: June 14, 2014, 09:12:51 PM »

OK I apologize for not caring remarks, but that's how it felt, there was no forthcoming information about when or even if more stocks would be in, yes I know times are hard for small shops not only model shops, but if you let stock get low aren't you just adding to the decline.
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malcolmfrary

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #57 on: June 14, 2014, 09:17:07 PM »

I used to have a great model shop within a 20 minute walk, but unfortunately the owners retirement equaled closure.  While a supply of balsa and obechi was always good, and access to a KS metal bar is great, these both represent a big outlay for the trader if there is not a good throughput. 
6mm sq ramin always was a DIY store item.
Doing a bit of measuring, the wire hole in the earth pin of a 13A plug is . . . 3mm.  A bit of modelling may will be required to give a custom arm.  In brass, as well.
Before model shops, people indulging in a craft hobby had to do a bit of lateral thinking, or, as they called it then, looking with a modelers eye, or just thinking.  We are headed back that way if we don't want an off the shelf toy the same as everybody elses.

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sparkey

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #58 on: June 14, 2014, 09:17:43 PM »

 %) When I was a young apprentice in the early 1960s there where at least 12 good model shops in south London, now there is only Mick Charles at Epson that I know of,I agree with Colin that there is some great British online supplies out there which should be supported instead of ordering from the other side of the world,we would all be stuffed without our computers as you cant nip round the corner to buy what you want strange world it is turning out to be,Ray. %)   
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Colin Bishop

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #59 on: June 14, 2014, 09:48:50 PM »

Quote
Now that raises a second thorny topic Colin. You can certainly do that and it is what I do as mentioned earlier. However when you use some suppliers and your goods arrive marked up and also in packaging marked 'Made in China' and with a sizable mark up on Chinese ebay prices, people are going to order from China!

That is very true of course and many people do go down that route. Yes, UK suppliers buying in from China will obviously put a mark up on the items (they are in business after all) but in many cases that is what you pay for quality control and a UK after sales service and many of our home based suppliers are very good in this respect. Plus, you will see them and their products at shows where you can handle the stuff yourself and that counts for a lot. Also not everything is available from ebay/China and if our people go out of business then the hobby will definitely suffer as a result. Buying cheap is not always good value, especially if the items are counterfeit and inferior quality as many from China are.

I have just bought a variety of minor items from Cornwall Model Boats costing 55. I expect some of these items could have been sourced from China/ebay had I spent enough time online looking for them and checking feedback etc. but it would not have been possible to get them all from one supplier and I might have had to wait a while for some of them. Cornwall Model Boats supplied the lot in a couple of days and I had no qualms about using my debit card to pay for them which is more than I can say for less well known suppliers who are more of a risk and certainly more likely to flog your email address on to add to your spam count!

We have a filling station in our village where I and many locals buy most of our fuel. We could get it at Tesco etc. when driving around for a couple of pence cheaper but if everyone did that then our filling station would be likely to close leaving the nearest alternative 5 miles or more away. It's worth the extra to keep the facility and support a local business.

You can always find something cheaper but it is not always the best value when you take everything into account.

Colin
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Subculture

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #60 on: June 14, 2014, 09:57:41 PM »

I can honestly say I do not know of a model shop in NE London.

Hobby Stores on Hertford Road.
Als Hobbies in Hainault.
308 Hobbies on Holloway Road.

RAAArtyGunner

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #61 on: June 14, 2014, 10:11:27 PM »

If you don't use it you will lose it.

In Oz we don't have the benefit of shops as you do in UK simple economics.

The problem mentioned applies to every type of retail activity, not just model boats, and is the result of bean counters philosophy which makes perfect sense.
Namely why tie up heaps of money on stock that is not sold daily, when it, stock, can be obtained from a distributor within say 24 hours.
The benefits are obvious, less money tied up doing nothing, less storage space required, etc, etc, you get the picture.

Eventually all that will be left is the on-line store.

The danger here, is that it, the on-line store, will be located off shore and postage costs will impact on our hobby.
Already happening here in Australia.
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Shipmate60

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #62 on: June 14, 2014, 10:25:02 PM »

I never thought this would happen but hope you are sitting down Alan.


I have been using this model shop for nearly 50 years.
Yes times have changed and so have the economics of the trade.
The present staff I have always found informative and give exceptional customer service.
It is one shop that do employ Modellers, several of which are Marine Modellers.
It is my first port of call when I want something. Now it is not always available (it used to be!!) but at least Alan is honest and if they cannot supply in time will usually give you an alternative supplier.


Bob
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html

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #63 on: June 14, 2014, 11:03:37 PM »

Hobby Stores in in North London (Enfield)
Als Hobbies is in Essex
308 Hobbies (the old Henry Nichols is in North London)
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BrianB6

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #64 on: June 14, 2014, 11:52:02 PM »

Ah yes!   Henry J. Nichols in Holloway Road.   They must have been fed up with me popping in every other day just to hear them testing engines out at the back when I was at the Northern Poly.   I did buy things there and recommended them to other students for model making bits
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TheLongBuild

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #65 on: June 15, 2014, 09:51:31 AM »

I think that a lot of model shops are like a well known camera film producer who thought digital cameras were just a fad and so did nothing until it was too late, and then tried to get on the band wagon.

Our local shop " Steve Webb's  Models"  run a reasonable stocked store for boats although their main displays are cars, and planes, however I have never visited for something and not gone way with either the required product or a suitable replacement. But Webb's set up their website " Servo Shop" at quite an early stage of the game and so get the best of both worlds, always people in the shop..

Brian60

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #66 on: June 15, 2014, 10:46:26 AM »

Here's the other side of online buying.

Two weeks ago I wanted a reference manual from AK paints, on the website it advertised free postage to UK,  great it was only 10 euro so I ordered it.

Now here's the stinker- The company is based in Logrono, Spain. I am in Spain about 400 miles from Logrono. They charged me 5 euro postage because it wasn't going to the UK! So if I had been another 1000 miles away it was free, as it was I had to pay.

But because it was bigger than a standard letter (it was A5 size) our postie won't deliver it, they leave a card telling you go pick it up. We had to drive 11 miles to the post office to collect it in person, such is life living in Spain.

Subculture

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #67 on: June 15, 2014, 11:11:48 AM »

Hobby Stores in in North London (Enfield)
Als Hobbies is in Essex
308 Hobbies (the old Henry Nichols is in North London)

Splitting hairs a bit aren't you? At least two of those are relatively local to you in Chingford. Even in the heyday of modelmaking back in the late seventies and early eighties getting to a model shop usually required a car journey.

The thing is these days, if you buy something from a  model shop, where is it made? Pretty much with few exceptions it will have been made in China. We don't make things any more. Prior to the Chinese it was Japanese or European imports denting sales.

The internet has dialled out the middle man. As customers I'm not sure what you have to complain about, I think the supply and quality of equipment is hugely better than it was years ago. Take off those rose tinted specs.

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #68 on: June 15, 2014, 11:41:59 AM »

We used to have three model shops in Eastbourne...then two...then one...now all we have a toy shop selling mainly RTR stuff.


Bob's Models was a personal favourite..always full of people chatting, whatever you wanted was normally on the shelf, if not Bob would do his utmost to get it within a day, and even phone you up to say your item had arrived (if the wife answered the phone he would always claim to have forgotten the price...). The kettle was always on, you even had your own mug, and there was a selection of stools to park your rear end on.


His wife was as knowledgeable as he was, a real gem she was.  A cracking shop, but rent increases (I think) forced him out of business...such a shame.


Rich
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NFMike

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #69 on: June 15, 2014, 01:38:05 PM »

The internet has dialled out the middle man. As customers I'm not sure what you have to complain about, I think the supply and quality of equipment is hugely better than it was years ago. Take off those rose tinted specs.
Have to agree with you there. Things change.

If you're not part of the future then get out of the way (John Mellencamp - Peaceful World)
Hard maybe, but that's the way it goes.

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #70 on: June 15, 2014, 05:56:57 PM »

Splitting hairs a bit aren't you? At least two of those are relatively local to you in Chingford. Even in the hay day of modelmaking back in the late seventies and early eighties getting to a model shop usually required a car journey.

The thing is these days, if you buy something from a  model shop, where is it made? pretty much with few exceptions it will have been made in China. We don't make things any more. Prior to the Chinese it was Japanese or European imports denting sales.

The internet has dialled out the middle man. As customers I'm not sure what you have to complain about, I think the supply and quality of equipment is hugely better than it was years ago. Take off those rose tinted specs.

Not splitting hairs subculture, I did say NE London, not Middlesex or Essex. When I was into control lines planes I was always in H J Nichols, I am not sure I want to travel for 25 minutes and then struggle to park, also the cost of parking is almost the same as the Post Office rip off charges.

There used to be a model shop in Chingford, I went there twice. I asked about some timber when I was building my Puffer, I might as well have been talking Russian to the boy. Second time I was after a charger I had seen on their website, they had the box but no charger and not sure when if ever they would get any more in. I wonder why it has shut?

A lot of companies on the internet do not have premises to visit, it is much cheaper for them to be a virtual shop. It is not much cheaper for the modeller though, as Post office rip off charges make it more financially viable to go to EBay and the far east suppliers, who a lot of the time do not charge postage.
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Subculture

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #71 on: June 15, 2014, 06:07:34 PM »

Hobbystores is probably no more than a ten or fifteen minute drive from Chingford, and it has an EN3 postcode.

I think most modelshops have always been fairly minimal on Marine stuff in proportion to other model stuff, unless the owner or staff are into that side of the hobby. I guess it's just not such a strong seller as cars and planes.

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #72 on: June 15, 2014, 08:08:36 PM »

Hobby stores is 18 minutes away from where I live and even with its postcode it is still in Middlesex
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slug

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #73 on: June 15, 2014, 08:24:55 PM »

lucky in Newark we have 2 model shops,one in the town...a pig to park,handy for bits and bobs,mostly trains and plastic kits.the other on an industrial estate mostl planes but a good boat section and easy parking,both are on the internet so the best of both worlds.the one on the industrial estate are very helpful and try and get things for you....tony
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Subculture

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Re: The decline of the model shop
« Reply #74 on: June 15, 2014, 09:20:30 PM »

Hobby stores is 18 minutes away from where I live and even with its postcode it is still in Middlesex

Just an historic county now. Enfield is part of Greater London.
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