On Fri, 5 Jun 2009 16:38:51 +0100, kim put finger to keyboard and
Interesting comment in there about overseas outsourcing, which looked
a very good deal while the pound was strong but much less so in
different financial climes. The flip side of that is that increased
outsourcing costs for the likes of Hornby ought to be good news for
domestic manufacturers such as Dapol.
FWIW: July MR has a review of Hornby America's reissue of Rivarossi's
Big Boy with DCC sound. It's the same molding as in the 1960s, with a
few detail upgrades, and the RP25 wheels which Rivarossi introduced when
it still had a close relationship with Walthers (the premier model train
distributor.) Not a bad model, engineered to traverse 18" radius curves,
and runs very well. But electrical pickup is poor (only 8 wheels, none
on the tender.) Placement of the sound decoder and speaker in the engine
instead of the tender is IMO a bad design decision. IOW, an engine of
medium to low quality. The list price is $420US. For comparison: the
Athearn Big Boy with DCC sound lists at $450, street price around $370.
Blueline makes a DCC-ready Big Boy with DC sound, lists at $470, street
prices around $390. If Hornby's wholesale pricing conforms to N.
American practice, the street price should be $330-350 which would make
it an acceptable buy, but not a bargain.
It seems to me that Hornby hasn't quite figured out the N. American
Amazing - Hornby doing well if difficult times, but you still know better!
Have you applied for a job on their Board? Sorry to be harsh, but from
your posts it's obvious that you are well out of touch with what's going
on in Europe and your "Hornby are always wrong" sniping is getting very
tedious - just an acknowledgement of their success occasionally would add
I'm not on Hornby's Board, but I am on the Board of a model railway
business that will launched in the next fortnight, so at least I'm
putting my money where my mouth is!
Oh well, I just read the UK magazines every couple or three months, and
study the adverts. I guess that means I'm out of the loop.
Hey, I think Hornby is doing most things right. Heck, they even use the
same wheel dimensions as Bachmann (or is it the other way round? Who
cares - it's a _standard_, which is a Good Thing.) ;-)
It's just that I want them to succeed in N. America. They bought
Rivarossi as much for the US outline models as for any other reason,
right? I mean, I wouldn't buy Rivarossi just for nostalgia's sake, would
you? But to succeed here they will have to face up to some rather brutal
competition. When a loco listed at $400 is offered for $180, with free
shipping, you know something is happening to the market, and it's not
just "these tough economic times" (which was and is a financial swindle,
anyhow.) Offering an old model for something too close to the price of a
recently tooled one is not the way to succeed.
Good for you, and best wishes.
Advice please: I want a nice little GWR pannier tank and two chocolate
and cream coaches, ca. 1947-54, for a Christmas village (with snow,
even. ;-) ) Both Bachmann and Hornby offer suitable items. Which would
you advise? Strengths, weaknesses of each?
I'm afraid you'd have to ask someone who sells 00 ready to run. I'll be
specialising in something else. I did look at 00 RTR and it was soon
apparent that that market is overcrowded for web sales and unsustainable
for the "shop" market. My advice would be the obvious - to compare the
two side by side and see which you like best, but therein lies the 00
problem, lack of shops to actually see them in. A very good reason for
not getting involved!
that depends on where you live - there are still a fair number of shops
about. Worth visiting model railway exhibitions as there are usually a fair
number of traders about. However, the danger of traders that you dont know
is obvious, so maybe not buy there.
Sorry, know absolutley nothing about GWR stuff - now if it was beautiful red
LMS you wanted....
Are they really, or are you just reading their hype?
As a retailer with over a quarter of a century of selling model trains, I'd
suggest that they are doing anything but well. Their products are
over-priced here in the UK and are not selling well, otherwise why do they
appear to be 'jobbing' so much unsold stock.
They're also having serious supply problems at a time when the Chinese
economy is extremely fragile and you'd expect the Chinese to be producing as
much stock as they possibly could.
On Sun, 07 Jun 2009 18:56:59 +0100, John Turner wrote:
The figures look good at the FT, where it matters. Personally I'd not
look for useful info about a company in the Daily Mail and such ;- )
Everyone else has had problems too - the Chinese economy is in a far
worse state than ours (75% of toy makers have gone bust - source BBC News
financial section). Hornby's supply problem has been public knowledge for
some time and has been successfully addressed. In my trade suppliers have
simply vanished overnight, so again a feather in the cap to Hornby for
sorting it out. The Chinese economy works very differently to ours, who
makes what where is not just down to a commercial descision or customer
Have you ever noticed retailers advertizing goods you know they can't
possibly have, and accepting orders and deposits they presumably know
they can't yet supply?
Would the Chinese do that too? ;-)
The manufacturers may well have materials supply shortages as they are
allocated such resorces by a central government organisation. China
definitely has materials shortages overall.
The manufacturers almost certainly have organisational problems due to
the company failures and takeovers.
Hornby's financial news always bring out the worst puns. I was
going to make a post compiling the bext/worst of them, but here
The Times - Problem with supplier sends Hornby off the rails
Telegraph - Light at end of tunnel for toy maker Hornby
FT - Hornby remains on track
Daily Mail - Toy maker Hornby hits buffers after sterling lacked steam
I think the winner is the Daily Mail for getting two in one headline.
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