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Thread: LHS Rant!


  1. #1

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    LHS Rant!

    I went to a hobby store, it's not a small one, agood size place,about 60 miles from me (the nearest one is 45 miles from me) , I have been there a few times before. I brought him two new finished planes to hang to sell. A CG Cub with usedOS 4 stroke (cost me $390.00 to build), and a TT Champion 45L with a new OS 46 FSR with a tuned pipe, and mechanical retracks (cost me $435.00 to build),both with all new unused Futaba S148 servos. First he asked me "did you remove the RX's & do I havethe batteries for them, those servos aren't very good!" I was talking to him, and he made me feel like a kit built plane, was really not as good as a dog plane (ARF) He said that people would come in and buy his arf there, a 50 something inch wing span first, because it came with the radio. at $450.00 I said if he talked the way he does he could sell my planes for the low price of $250.00 , and a new radio from his shelf for less than the $450.00 and they would have a much better setup & plane! He looked at me like I was nuts!
    Then a guy walked in and was looking around, then asked where are your airplane kits, and he pointed at the only arf he had and said there! The guy said No your real kits. The owner said what kit did he want, he can get any plane he wanted, but he wasn't going to get kits in, that will sit on his shelf for 4-6 months before selling! I said thats not true, that he would get builders to come and but them to support his store. He said Nope ain't going to happen! Looked around and asked How come you have every building accessories that Dubro, and every other brand sold, stock all the colors that Ultracote & monocote has, lots of different types of glue,and only 6 pieces of balsa wood, and about 10 pieces of piano wire, everything for building,and no kits! just a wall of arf's? He said people want those things! I said people want kits too!
    He also had dozensof helicopters, small and large,and I don't know how many rc cars hehad lots, and parts for everything! Just none of them real wood airplanekits. Oh, the guy that came in looking for a kit,just shook his head and walked out!

    I left my planes for him to sell, and I hope he does it soon! I need the money for my wifes meds!

    I'm off thebox now!
    Pat

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    The hobby is changing.[&o][&o][&o]

  3. #3
    Live Wire's Avatar
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    This HOBBY change many years ago when the PC became the LHS and China your main supplier[:@]
    Larry K
    Larry K
    Sig Brotherhood # 1 Sig Kadet Brotherhood # 4 WACO Brotherhood #34 Cub Brotherhood 14

  4. #4
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I'm not sure what your problem is. Hobby shops will cary what they can turn over in a reasonable time, at a reasonable profit. They are not philanthropic organizations, they are there to make some kind of living/profit for their owner/operator. That's the ONLY reason they exist.

    Les

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    Moderator blw's Avatar
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    Les, that would mean that we could only buy what the lhs owner decides we could buy. While he is mostly in it for making a profit, he does need to support the needs of hobbyists if he hopes to keep his customer base. That means having the props on hand, glow fuel, glue, etc. It's part of the hobby. Boxes of ARFs on the shelves aren't going to attract modelers or kit builders for long unless all of the other things are in there too......imho.
    The ultimate responsibility of pilots is to fulfill the dreams of the countless millions who can only stare skyward...and wish.

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I hate to admit it, but the LHS owner is probably right. He could stock an assortment of 50 different kits, but will likely only sell a few within 6 months.

    My observation, through 40 years in this hobby, is that us aero-modelers are a cranky bunch. The LHS could stock a 60" Corsair, but we won't buy it, because we want a 65" that would better fit some 25 year old engine we have. He could stock a bubble P-47, but no, we want a razorback instead. The variations of kits are endless, and so are our excuses for wanting something that he doesn't have. We'd end up complaining that he isn't stocking the exact kits that I and only I want. And on top of that... we're a bunch of tightwads. He could put a price of $200 on a kit, but no, we won't pay a dime over $180 for a "box of sticks" and walk away.

    Yes, my examples above are facetious & silly, but if we're honest with ourselves, we (the collective of builders) can see that grain of truth.

    I'm off my box now, too!

  7. #7
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    The point is there is not enough of us builder's left to support a store carrying our need's. Most the LHS's in my area don't even carry ARF's, only foamy park flyer's. That's also why in the last several year's I purchase on line. As for China, in all reality we should count our lucky stars for China and Japan. If not for their people's willingness to work cheap we would not have anything to buy. God only know's we can't produce anything at a reasonable price for many reason's. And I know all the crap this is going to stir up, but it's the simple truth. Between government, insurance, union, and lawyer's it's a wonder anyone is in buisiness.
    Robert
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    Back in the day, kits or scratch built is all there was, and it was a HOBBY that required effort and commitment from the modeler to be successful.  The early arfs were heavy plastic monstrosities that were lucky to get off the ground.  Today's arfs are exceptional in quality, performance and value and I can't blame people for buying them.  That being said, I still prefer kits because I believe it makes the difference between being a hobby or just being "toys".  Every time my plane leaves the ground, I am risking my own time and effort, not just something I bought.  Hobby shops have become another version of "toy stores" because that's what sells these days.

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I'm 100% in agreement with post 6, 7, and 8. Before my LHS sold he had a complete room of nothing but built planes being sold on consignment. The shops name is Nice Twice, he sold new and used items. I have seen some great dedals and planes in that back room just sit there collecting dust for a lot more then months. Kit built planes just don't sell?? Maybe it is a trust issue but I would have thought just the low prices would be worth it because of the engines and gear I have seen in some of these planes. Don't hold your breath waiting for your planes to sell, it may be a while.
    Nice also had some nice old kits in stock once in a while, they would buy an estate sale. Once in a while there would be a new kit in stock too. Depending on what it was it may sell right away or sit there forever.
    If your LHS stocked a couple of kits like an Up-Roar or Dazzler do you think they would sell? Probably not. If it was marked up even a little over the price Tower sells them for they will never move.
    As a builder I'm the only one I know that still builds at all. Even some of the best I have know have gone over to the ARF.
    They do buy all those Dubro and Sullivan items you saw hanging on the walls to replace the ARF hardware. I just bought out all the 3/32 and 5/32 piano wire at Nice and had to go over to the Hobby People to buy more. Nice doesn't stock wood, they didn't stock it before the place sold, it didn't move. Hobby People stocks wood but you would pay through the nose for it. No way could you ever buy your wood there to da a scratch build. I buy my wood in bulk from National Balsa but HP is fine for when I need a piece of wood. This week I need a sheet of 3/32 ply, they have it in stock. Michale's also sells wood but again, you can't afford a lot of it but there light ply is pretty cheap.
    Builders are a thing of the past so hobby shops aren't going to cater to a few people like myself. As mentioned, I'm cheap too but I just saved myself a wait by ordering some items on line, my LHS ordered to order it for me but they tend to forget to call when items come in and they charge more for the parts. Then I would have to drive across town to pick them up. They were a buck a pack cheaper and I got them sent to my door in only three days.
    Nope, sorry, built kit planes aren't worth spit and if your a builder then you are a mail order person too. I used to have a Nice hobby shop that stocked what I needed but I think that is a thing of the past too.
    Good luck on the sale!! The LHS owner is pretty much correct but I don't think a ARF is better built then one of my planes, lighter yes but not better. They still can't last for decades the way I fly!!
    Drinking and driving are illegal, why do bars have parking lots
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  10. #10
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    RE: LHS Rant!



    And what's amazing is when we take one of our scratchbuilt aeroplane's out to the field, the ARF guy's go nut's over it. And if you ask them why don't they build one their responce is not that they can't or don't want to but that they don't have the time. Which I simply reply Bullsh*t. I have been a builder since my early teen's. Even manage to build while working 12-16 hour day's. There is only one reason not to build. You just don't want to. And I'm ok with that. Nothing in this hobby is set in stone. To each his own.

    Robert
    Cub Brotherhood #3\\ Ryan STA Brotherhood #4
    Corsair Brotherhood #56\\ Waco Brotherhood #184

  11. #11
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    My local H/S used to carry wall to wall kits, he may have a old kit or two laying around from time to time he is selling for someone else. He also have numerous planes 5+ at all times hanging from the ceiling he is selling for aomeone else and they are cheap, you cannot even think about building them for the cost. He had a 1/4 scale Laser with a OS-120 4-stoke(never ran) with all the servo's for $299. I stop in just to buy hardware. I don't buy ARF's or planes other people built. Building is #1 with me and flying is secondary.

    There are a only maybe 5 kits on my wish list I want to build and the rest are plans built. Unfortunately the kits I want are high $$$$ so I can't just go buy them all and sit on them without the wife beating me over the head with a rolling pin.
    Anthony
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I'm new to the world of RC planes, but when looking for a Kit to build I searched online to select one first. When I found one I liked, I called my LHS and asked if they carried it? The answer was "No, but we can more than likely find it and order it for you.."  First thing I thought was " Well if I have to wait and then drive back to the LHS again to pick it up when it comes in, I might as well order it myself." I'd like to give my LHS some business, but it's only common sense that if he doesn't have what I want when I want it, I'll go elsewhere to find it.. And probably without his Mark-up also

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    Dont know what the fuss is all about, there will always be builders.

    ARF,S are great I have a few, some of the latest lightest arf,s are the best flyers out there, nice and modern designs that are light with huge surfaces for the latest flying manouvres. BUT

    if you are like me flying is only part of the hobby, creating something from nothing will always be something I enjoy, I will always have something on the table.

    But I am starting to look at scratch build now as most of the kits about are old school,weight to much and are not designedfor modern flying techniques and power.

    I know the kit market is small though so im not going to wait for someone else to produce a kit for me that does what I want and im not going to moan about it, the internet is huge and allows for the ordering of supplies andgives theinformation required to build any thing you can dream up.

    Stop moaning about what you cant buy in a shoplike a arf guy and start producingsomething unique.

  14. #14
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I guess I am like the other Gene.  I really enjoy the building part.  Makes your heart go pitter, patter when you see that puppy in the air.  I do mostly scratch building.  Bought several plans from air-age.  I build, my wife does most of the covering.  She does however, have no interest in learning to fly.  But, she will say, do you want to go to the field and she rides with me. 
    DX-7,RDS8000. big Bingo,1/4 Scale Cub, SeaMaster 120, Forget the health food, I need all the preservatives I can get

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    RE: LHS Rant!


    ORIGINAL: Toysareforkids

    Β* I went to a hobby store, it's not a small one, aΒ*good size place,Β*about 60 miles from me (the nearest one is 45 miles from me) , I have been there a few times before. I brought him two new finished planes to hang to sell. A CG Cub with usedΒ*OS 4 stroke (cost me $390.00 to build), and a TT Champion 45L with a new OS 46 FSR with a tuned pipe, and mechanical retracks (cost me $435.00 to build),Β*both with all new unused Futaba S148 servos. First he asked me ''did you remove the RX's & do I haveΒ*the batteries for them, those servos aren't very good!'' Β*I was talking to him, and he made me feel like a kit built plane, was really not as good as a dog plane (ARF) He said that people would come in and buy his arf there, a 50 something inch wing span first, because it came with the radio. at $450.00Β* I said if he talked the way he does he could sell my planes for the low price of $250.00 , and a new radio from his shelf for less than the $450.00 and they would have a much better setup & plane! He looked at me like I was nuts!
    Β*Then a guy walked in and was looking around, then asked where are your airplane kits, and he pointed at the only arf he had and said there! The guy said No your real kits. The owner said what kit did he want, he can get any plane he wanted, but he wasn't going to get kits in, that will sit on his shelf for 4-6 months before selling!Β* I said thats not true, that he would get builders to come and but them to support his store. He said Nope ain't going to happen! Looked around and asked How come you have every building accessories that Dubro, and every other brand sold, stock all the colors that Ultracote & monocote has, lots of different types of glue,Β*and only 6 pieces of balsa wood, and about 10 pieces of piano wire, everything for building,Β*and no kits! just a wall of arf's? He said people want those things! I said people want kits too!
    Β*He also had dozensΒ*of helicopters, small and large,Β*and I don't know how many rc cars heΒ*had lots, and parts for everything! Just none of them real wood airplaneΒ*kits. Oh, the guy that came in looking for a kit,Β*just shook his head and walked out!

    Β*I left my planes for him to sell, and I hope he does it soon! Β*I need the money for my wifes meds!

    Β*I'm off theΒ*box now!
    Β*Β* Pat
    The guy is entitled to run his store to the ground any way he wants ... Either fast or slow. Seems like he chose the fast route.
    We in the Federal Government have no sense of humor that we are aware of.

  16. #16
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    My LHS has been there for 50 yrs.  He used to stock kits but now has mostly rc cars and trucks. I had him hang my Sig Kadet MKII with an Irvine engine, Futaba rx, battery, all servos, and a Futaba 4 ch transmitter with buddy cords. I was asking $250,  He liked the plane - excellent condition, no crashes.  But he sells foam park stuff and said people won't buy glow trainers. He was right; I donated to our club as a utility trainer.

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I am luck as the local hobby shop does stock a few kits and a ton of hardware at decent prices. Usually a couple buck cheaper than online.

    For instance I just purchased an AR400 receiver and it was 26 bucks in the store where it is listed at 29 buck online.

    Why not have a chat with the local places and let them know if they would stock some kits they may be able to boost their buisness by not only selling the kit but everything that goes with it.

    On another note I had run out of white ultracote on a saturday night so I went to a hobby town because they are open on sundays. They wanted 23 bucks for a roll! needless to say I waited until Monday to pick it up...


  18. #18
    Moderator blw's Avatar
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I'm lucky because I had the chance to buy a fortune in balsa for only a coupla hundred dollars.
    The ultimate responsibility of pilots is to fulfill the dreams of the countless millions who can only stare skyward...and wish.

    "It's a new day for Auburn" - Gus Malzahn

  19. #19
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    The hobby is not what it used to be. People used to appreciate craftsmanship, some still do but most don't. Look here at RCU. I posted some pictures of a 33% Laser that I scratch built. I had to cut all the wood parts, I cut my own foam surfaces, made molds and my own glass parts. My thread got less then 300 hits. A ' Build " of a comperable size ARF got 10 times the hits. We are in a society of instant gratification. Your LHS owner is 100% correct. He will stock what the market drives, right now that is ARF's that he can't make enough money from to cover the rent of the floor space they occupy until he sells them. The best he can do is hope for sales of support equipment. It's our own fault...... we are the ones ordering items to save a few bucks and not supporting our local shop then we make matters worse by coming online and taking more food out of the poor guys mouth with these threads.
    Of course it's true, I read it on the Internet.

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    RE: LHS Rant!


    ORIGINAL: goirish

    I guess I am like the other Gene.Β* I really enjoy the building part.Β* Makes your heart go pitter, patter when you see that puppy in the air.Β* I do mostly scratch building.Β* Bought several plans from air-age.Β* I build, my wife does most of the covering.Β* She does however, have no interest in learning to fly.Β* But, she will say, do you want to go to the field and she rides with me.Β*
    Is that what happened to my hart?? I never said what I was doing when I had my hart attacks. I was out in the shop finishing up an ARF I was doing a review on and I had just finished it. I needed to get about a half dozen finish photos and needed grass as a back ground. I picked up my camera and the plane to take it up to the mail box area, took about two steps out of my shop and Shazam, it hit me. Being a dumb ass I still walked up to get the photos, I knew what was going on but figured it would just go away, this thinking from a first responder, guess you could say those classes and training were wasted!!. I got up there {about 50 yards} got the photos, walked back to the shop, put the plane away, came into the house and dialed 911!! Truth!! It's what I did.
    I couldn't figure out the programs Mike sent me to do reviews so he said to just send him the photos and my review in an email when I felt up to it. I finally did the review and sent it to Minn. Two days later I got the word he had passed.
    I decided then and there, fooling with ARFs is hazardous to your health!! I also decided that Mrs. Winchester had the right idea. I have been on a building mission sense I have been able to get back into my shop. I was waiting for that other shoe to drop but I'm now feeling great but I'm not going to stop building, been buying more and more plans, have a few kits. Look what happened to Mrs. Winchester when the builders of her house went out on strike!! I'm not risking it.
    Now you know what happens when your hart goes pitter patter!!! Plus you get even stranger if your lucky enough to recover!!!
    The other Gene
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  21. #21
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    It's really a shame with what's going on with the hobby industry today. There are so many ARFs on the market that we, as a builder, can not build for what they cost. But I don't think we should get too used to it. The Human Rights Activists aren't going to let the Chinese people work in sweat shops forever.

    As for Hobby Town's price for UltraCoat, less than $10.00 for a 6' roll . I saw some today while I was there. I also noticed some Hitex 845 servos $12.99 each. So their prices aren't all that bad.

    What would be nice is if some of these ARF manufacturers would make some of thier ARFs just KITS. Just cut out all the parts, throw them in a box, add the hardward and ship them. That way, we builders, can build it and cover it the way we want it. And cut the price from ARF to KIT.

    And most of these LHS owners need rotate their inventory. All the stuff that is out dated or obselete could be sold at cost, just to move it. The money tied up in this inventory is expensive. Use it to buy new up to date products. Anything that hasn't sold in the last 90 days should become a "Special" and move it. Put the money into new inventory.

    As for selling personally built planes, never try to sell it with the engine and electronics. Most of us have engines sitting in boxes waiting on a new plane. I know I have receivers, servos and battery packs sitting in boxes. Why would I want to buy a plane that I have to spend more on just to get engines and radio stuff I already have. If I need an engine, I'll ask if one comes with the plane.

    Frank


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    RE: LHS Rant!


    ORIGINAL: countilaw

    It's really a shame with what's goingΒ* on with the hobby industry today....

    Frank



    I'm not sure I would call it "a shame." Should I feel ashamed for using a digital camera instead of film? Some things are just better.

    Kurt

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    RE: LHS Rant!



    Rant opens the door to ranting so here it goes.

    Hmmmm, almost 11,000 posts in 9 years!!!   Hmmmm, let's figure 2x that in PM's and another 2x in emails not to mention all the time spent browsing?   That's about 4 to 6 hours a day sitting at the PC letting the arteries clog.  No exercise, and a box full of donuts next to the keyboard?  Could that combination warrant a "hart" attack?  Is having the most posts on a hobby web site worth it?

    Like most everyone said here, it's the LHS owners choice to carry what he thinks will sell so he can pay his rent, utilites, taxes and feed his family.  Do you go into McDonalds and ask for a 16 ounce prime steak cooked to order?  He's a small entrepreneur trying to cater to HIS desire to make a living first and then sell what will get him to that plateau next.  

    We just lost an awesome family owned hobbyshop in Plano that has catered to this hobby for decades.  A new owner came in and bought the remains and I noticed close to an $8.00 per gallon price increase on fuel alone.  As mad as that made me, our current economy requires a specific profit margin in order to pay the cost of doing business.  I was really hoping for "business as usual" but the new owners won't replace the hospitality, love, friendship, dedication and customer support that once fueled that store.  I've been self employed for 33 years.  You can't pay the electricity bill with and of those attributes listed above but they all fall into the equation of making sales.   

    This is RCU.  There are hundreds of kits for sale here and you don't have to drive 60 miles and waste $40.00 worth of gas to make that trip. 
    The owner doesn't make squat on selling your planes over what he makes on his merchandise.  You can also sell your planes here too!  HMMM.  I'm done ranting.  I think I'll go execise the "hart" by doing my early morning 1.5 miles jog before society wakes up and reality kicks in. 

    Intelligence is similar to a dress code. Dont attend a black tie affair wearing cutoffs and a tank top. Know your facts

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    RE: LHS Rant!

    The hobby store I'm talking about has no problem selling stuff. He has a on-line store also, and brags about how good he is doing. He sponsors 20 heli pilots, he flew for Kyosho, he has 2 helicopters on the market he designed. He was loading up a hugh trailer when I was there taking half hisstore to Indiana for a fly-in this week. He say's hedoes it several times a year.He flys a 12' Telmaster that he built from a kit he paid $1200.00 for. Which is sitting on top of a shelf after a light crashed. He has large open space, were he could put a kit or 3. I didn't say to stock a dozen or so, just a couple. The main fly around his area is were 1/4 scale is the smaller planes, and most are scratch or kit built.
    There are 4 other small shops that cater to the hobby, around,I mean small in size, that all carry balsa, plywood and spruce, wires wheels and small parts, and each try to keep a couple of kits alos. But they all mainly supply to arf's and foam planes.They don't have the same foot traffic as the other guy so I tried him. I have sold planes at one of the the others and at the tlying fields around.

    I drive 60 miles to his shop be causethe nearest one to me is 45 miles away

    You say to sell it on RCU, I'm already giving them away at the price I'm asking,and most people don't want to add the cost of shipping these days. A year and a half ago Isold 45of my kits, a couple sold on RCU but no onewanted to buy more, so I sold them on ebay, I had73nitro & gas engines, a few sold on here, I put the rest on ebay, I had over 100 new servo's, I installed in planesI sold I have maybe 20 left for me.a dozen planesnot one sold on here, I hung and sold some on ebayI have 25 planes built, half are ready to fly or I am flying, 8need to be covered and motors &radio's reinstalled. from .020 to my 1/4 scale DR1 and2 arf's, andone micro foamy!
    Not to count the 3 newradio's, 2 boats,2 helicopters, and 13 rc cars I sold also. Just in the last1 1/2-2 years,to pay for my wifes meds!

    The owner doesn't make squaton selling your planes over what he makes on his merchandise. Ahh but he does, the amount is different for each store. I have sold many, many planes over the years. I am a builder of kit andscratch building for over 40 years, and always am selling a plane somewhere.And it also brings people in when the see different planes in the store. The only one that does Not make money is me! I do it because I have built planes since I was 8, and it's in my blood!I do it now because I sitin the room next to my wife, and take care of herbecause a surgeon screwed up and hit her Vegas nerve 2 years ago, and it keeps me going!

    You say- "Why would I want to buy a plane that I have to spend more on just to get engines and radio stuff I already have. If I need an engine, I'll ask if one comes with the plane." Not everyone has a spare engine, and today people want to buy & fly, And I also tell the shops that I will also sell it with out the servo's or motor for less,if they don't want them.

    And YES! it is thier buiness to do what ever they want, But, don't bicth whenthey close, when theycould have also been selling stuff that the buildersalso need and want! Theyare the ones changingfrom hobbyshops,to arf stores, not us! They can still sell to both and still turn their stock.

    Most hobby store owners I know of, where flyer/builder first, and then were store owners.

    Pat

  25. #25
    PatrickCurry's Avatar
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    RE: LHS Rant!

    I would have to agree that he's probably the best person to know what sells in his store and he's free to carry whatever makes him a profit. Sometimes we as customers let our "wants and needs" emotions cloud what we feel they should be carrying. My issue would be if he was talking down to you about the quality of your work or what equipment you put in your planes. If he thinks you do less than quality work because he doesn't like the brand of servo you put in there, I'd probably try to sell my plane somewhere else. He either allows people to sell their stuff in his shop or he doesn't and he shouldn't care whether you pulled out the RX or the battery. Dang, in fact, the more equipment you've pulled out is just that more a chance for him to sell something new out of his shop! As long as he's got the space to hang it and doesn't have to turn down someone else wanting to sell their plane, he shouldn't care what price you put on it. Myself, I'd probably try to sell them through the classifieds or on Craigslist in Knoxville (had to google Deer Lodge ) even if I had to offer to meet someone half way for them to pick them up. Obviously, he's going to bad-mouth the equipment in your planes and every call you get, people are going to try to knock you down on your price because of "inferior quality". Anyway, good luck with it and I'm sorry you're having to sell your planes to pay for your wife's medicine...... another issue we could get up on our soap boxes about. []
    Pat


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