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View Full Version : Any Hobby-Shop owners?



nitrorulz
03-08-2005, 02:21 PM
I'm thinking of opening one up inside my shop I already have going with another business! I've been into the hobby for 26 years now and know it pretty well. My question is where do you buy most of your stock. I know about Great-planes/Towers, but not sure if they have best price or not. A friend of mine that has a shop; already shows me prices sometimes, and they look high when I compare them to the price on Towers for just an individual with discounts coupons.

For example, he showed me a MGT at GP's for his cost at $423.00, but I bought one off e-bay from a Hobby shop there for just $345.00 delivered N.I.B. They run them at that price quite often. I thought, I would just buy it off e-bay at that price, then put it in my shop if I had one for the $400.00-$425.00 range. I've seen alot of these examples, so its got me wondering about where to buy the stuff. I know some of the items I can go direct, but alot you must buy big quanities to do so. Mine will just be a smaller size, local shop. I'll have to stay somewhat competitive with internet and Mag's though!

Please respond only if you are in the business. In know there will be lots of opinions, but on this, I need the in-business facts!

Thanks

slat26
03-08-2005, 04:35 PM
edit: sorry didn't see it was for bussiness owners only :o

Silent Scope
03-08-2005, 04:49 PM
I dont have a hobby store or anything but Im sure stores have contracts with companys.. Like Towerhobbies with Duratrax for example.

rcguy2477
03-08-2005, 11:05 PM
Tower hobbies is often known for selling their parts and cars for high prices to hobby shops, and selling the parts themselves online for very low prices. Great Planes sells at a more fair price that allows the hobby shops to compete with other places. Look also into smaller companies, such as battery matchers, motor tuners, ect. They may offer better quality products at a better price.

JOK3R
03-08-2005, 11:17 PM
also look for local distributors in your area. Here there are a few distributors and they carry alot of the stuff so the hobby stores can order from them and get the parts locally within that day. Only stuff that they dont have they order from Horizon

Greg_Hager
03-09-2005, 01:42 AM
I don't know what the deal was with the GP being upwards of four hundred, I just checked our price on GP and it was $365. You getting it off eBay for $345 was more than likely a hobbyshop moving inventory that won't sell. Granted it's a good truck, they just might not have had a large monster truck crowd.

atm92484_3
03-09-2005, 03:06 AM
For example, he showed me a MGT at GP's for his cost at $423.00, but I bought one off e-bay from a Hobby shop there for just $345.00 delivered N.I.B...

Welcome to the wonderful world of hobby shops. Unfortunately thats how it goes with pricing and there isn't any way around it on some items. You'll get people who will complain about pricing eventhough theres not much you can do about it, but as long as your customer service is good and your selection covers the key items, you'll be fine.

Like others have said, for distributors, your best bet is to get several distributors (GPMD, Horizon, HRP, Competition Products, MDP being the big names) with a wide array of products so you can shop around a little and try to find who has the best prices along with some company specific distributorships. Just keep in mind distributors will often have some sort of ordering quota you will need to meet (the amount and when its required varies by distributor).

Lapster
03-09-2005, 11:16 AM
Yep, the shop that just opened near me is trying to aquire great planes... but they are requiring 1000$/month.

rocknbil
03-09-2005, 11:28 AM
nitrorulz that is PERFECT, because the first business will carry the new one.

Not a hobby shop owner but coincidentally my wife is opening her own little thing and it's the same business concept, you need to contact the manufacturers and find out who their wholesale distributors are. If my wife's thing gets going, we may do the same thing, piggy-back the hobby stuff onto her biz. :D

StevePond
03-09-2005, 11:41 AM
Tower hobbies is often known for selling their parts and cars for high prices to hobby shops, and selling the parts themselves online for very low prices. Great Planes sells at a more fair price that allows the hobby shops to compete with other places. Look also into smaller companies, such as battery matchers, motor tuners, ect. They may offer better quality products at a better price.


For the record, Tower Hobbies doesn't sell to hobby shops - they are the retail wing of Great Planes. Great Planes is the distributor where hobby shops buy their merchandise.

nitrorulz
03-09-2005, 12:33 PM
Thanks guys! Yeah, the pricing is how I thought it would be, not always low for a hobby shop at some places! I have a truck acc's shop now, and I'm against the same type of senario on Mag pricing, Internet pricing etc. I can't buy at the super low price's the Huge company's do, so I have to be a little higher, but yet make less profit at my higher price, than they do at their lower price, but you can beat that Horse to death and won't get 90% of people to understand that!

Anymore, service doesn't mean anything to about 90% of peeps either! I'm sure I'll run into all that in a Hobbyshop, just like I do in my Truck shop, but I'll just have to deal with it!

yuckydog
03-11-2005, 09:00 AM
You can also look into operating a Hobbytown USA franchise. You pay them a small royalty but you can hook up with their setup, distribution, marketing, etc.

slaf
03-11-2005, 09:23 AM
I sell RC stuff on EBay and got all the stuff from a distributor. Prices on EBay are really low, lower than what I pay to my distributor.

I don't know where other EBay store get their products but I also like to know :) Send me a PM !!!

ronin8451
03-11-2005, 10:31 AM
I think that some distributors should start enforcing MAP pricing to keep us small shops alive ! I applaud companies like STS Engines that forbid their dealer network to sell goods on E-bay, which devaluates the market. I get all sorts of customers coming in to my shop and saying " I can get that on E-bay for 35% less than your price " and it makes me mad because that is dealer cost or sometimes less ! I also saw last week that Novarossi has put their foot down and forbid any distributor from listing stuff on E-bay OR on an internet site for sale since the distributor obviously can under-cut a dealer on pricing and still make a profit. It's hard to make it as a small hobby shop , but you have to love the hobby to do it ! :D
By the way, another easy to deal with Distributor for some car stuff is Eagle Distributing in Oklahoma. They are mainly a slot car dist., but also carry Associated, Traxxas, Novak, Futaba, Parma, etc. and have very small minimums so that the small shops don't have to go way into debt just to get supplies !

rocknbil
03-11-2005, 11:24 AM
I can certainly understand your frustration, and that of most hobby shop stores. Selling parts and kits is how you stay alive, but the bottom line is that's what you're competing against. I've always wonders just how a LHS could remain competitive in pricing and still keep it's doors open, hopefully other LHS owners can offer how they do it.

IMO diversification of services could support that part of the biz? For example, with RTR's jamming the market right now, it seems like LHS owners have an awesome opportunity to fill the R/C repair and service, as many newcomers would rather bring it to the shop and throw money at it. This requires being on the spot and more work, but it could help.

Another is staging multi- function events to bring in money and interest, other than just races. I remember the shop near here used to have "egg races" on Easter, each driver duct tapes a raw egg to the body and you run until the last driver still carries an unbroken egg. It sounds stupid but it was fun as hell and brought a LOT of biz to the shop and track. The shop even got a FREE spot in the nightly news. People showed up that would never be interested in R/C.

You have to be innovative and move the basis of your income from the parts. Then when they start ragging on how much cheaper it is on the 'net, the answer, "Well this is here, now, do you want it or not?" should do just fine.

iheartskins
03-11-2005, 12:38 PM
I don't know if this works in the R/C Hobby arena, but see if you can sell other manufacturer's/distributor's ("M/D"s) goods on a consignment deal such that you don't have to pay for the goods you sell until you sell them. My dad does this in his business and it drastically reduces the cost of inventory--which I'm sure you know is one of the largest costs a business carries. With that said, I'd imagine most M/Ds would be reluctant do this from the beginning but I'd imagine that after you'd proven yourself trustworthy they might entertain that idea.

Just my $.02.