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Old Jan 10, 2013, 09:39 PM
Heli's rule!
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Midvale, Utah, USA
Joined Mar 2005
8,622 Posts
Man A decent hobby shop recently opened its doors near me! Its probably the best one I have ever been in, IMO. No train crap, no nitro crap, but just about every part I could hope to find for my parkzone planes and blade heli's, plus lots of traxxas and losi stuff, plus align heli's and parts. I guess you could almost just call it a horizon hobby store with a few extra popular brands thrown in..... best of all its all highly organized and easy to find stuff, all the stuff I bought for my heli's and the tail for my p-51 were all the same price as on horizon.com. And the hours aren't stupid like most of the hobby shops around here. (there is one around here that is open only till 5 on weekdays and closed saturday, don't know if its still open, but that's just silly, I tried to visit it, but it was always closed when I was off work) Anyway, the people are helpful and friendly. Finally someone gets it, sell parts for the popular stuff, and reasonable prices, and help people when they come in. They even have hyperion batteries (at reasonable prices)

If anyone is in the salt lake city area and curious, its called vortex hobbies, in the shopping center on the South West corner of redwood and 90th south. I highly recommend them, hope this one stays open!!
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Old Jan 10, 2013, 11:19 PM
Registered User
United States, SC, Irmo
Joined Jul 2004
2,102 Posts
On a somewhat brighter side, a hobby shop from about 25 miles away in a larger city moved to another much smaller city in our county, only about 9 iles away. Opened in a kind of hole-in-the-wall location in a fairly new strip mall complex. After two years, he was smart enough to modify his inventory to try to meet his customers' need, not necessarily their demands. This let him expand into the unit next door, more than doubling his floor space. He has also added 3 employees. Just thought people might want to hear some good news for a change.
Of course, a lot of his business is still RC Cars, and he even got a plot of land next door as an outdoor dirt road track. Even put up an elevated stand and some bleachers.
Guess sometimes you have to take the bad with the good. He's starting to increase inventory in planes, helicopters, trains, and even a few non-plastic boats/ships.
I definitely miss one HS we had back in my high school and early post Air Force married days. The citiy's fire chief and his wife ran it. Specialized in CL and RC aircraft, with some HO trains and power model boats. Made it a point to keep up with the latest trends. He built, flew, operated something from all the product areas he sold. He was always willing to help young people starting out. He flew FF, CL, and RC. Started the shop in a small nook in his house, expanded twice in roughly thirty years. And to make him even more of an asset to RC modelers, he had an FCC 2nd class radiotelephone ticket that let him do repair and tuning on transmitters back during the transition era from tubes to transistors.
Don't think there are too many like him nowadays.
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Old Jan 11, 2013, 11:39 AM
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Joined Jul 2012
54 Posts
It is a shame about the LHSs. I have one here that is real close and does get into some planes and helis. But one thing they don't do is try to stay up on the new things in the hobby. Sometimes when I go there they just look at my funny, well maybe I'm just funny looking. But even when I try to give them my business they just don't seem interested. And it takes them weeks sometimes to get what you need.
This hobby seems to be driven by new technology and if your not on top of it, we'll then people are going to look somewhere else.
The same thing happened with speed shops in my area. At first they couldn't compare to the prices offered by the mail order companies. Then when the suppliers started to work with them so they could be competitive, it was to late, everyone had moved on.
The fact that there are forums like these even contribute some to the LHS demise. The Hobby shop or your local club, which usually had something to do with the LHS was were you had to go for info. Now we want everything right now. Go in a forum, get the info you need, go to eBay of an online dealer and the part is on the way and to your house before the weekend.
It's a shame they are disappearing , but how can they even try to keep up.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 09:10 PM
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Another one gone in Woodinville, WA. I used to go there a few times a month, and bought probably $50 a month on average. I was disappointed he never gave a discount, I guess I now see why he never did.

What bothered me was being out of stock on things I needed. It was a small hobby shop though with 10% dedicated to Align. Most of the area was for cars, then E-Flite foamys and Blade helis. I'm not usually interested in that.

He really couldn't carry all the stuff I wanted, but it was nice to have a LHS that carried Align heli stuff, so I bought there what I could install that night for flying on Sunday. Some servos and gyros etc. I would have bought Align heli kits from there, but I'm not going $200 farther in the hole vs a online seller.

I did it to myself, but I'll just order online more. There's a Hobbytown like a mile away from me, but they don't carry anything except Blade. The balsa, basswood, plywood, and spruce are not up to the usual levels compared to a few years ago. They dedicate a lot of space to plastic aircaft/tank/car models. Are there many people that even do that any more? Just curious.
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Last edited by eagle777; Jan 18, 2013 at 09:43 PM.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 09:35 PM
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Joined Aug 2007
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I kind of miss the old days, where the nitro motors were placed atop the box that you bought and were in a glass case, and there was like 50-60 balsa kits to choose from. That was kind of past my time, I just remember it as a kid. .020 .049, .10 (powerful!), but hard to procure and I have no interest in reviving one from EBay.

I've purchased thousands of $ of motors, ESCs, airframes, but have nostalgia for the period before the changeover. Simpler times.

I have to program and tweak 3 axis gyros for helis now, and really don't miss the past.
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 10:08 PM
PLD
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Australia, QLD, Charters Towers
Joined Dec 2003
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If you want discounts, then you probably need to be buying about $200/mth
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Old Jan 18, 2013, 10:17 PM
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How many people could do that $200/month? At the local Hobbytown, it's $5 off your $100 or $200 cumulative or something. The LHS is dying.

I have no problem with online, but am embarrassed at work when I get 6-8 boxes/envelopes a month from hobby shop return addresses from the deepest reaches of China & all the stamps. Yeah, nerd (nolife) here.

Teh unintended consequences. You hobby purveyors should offer a 'Office - Printer/Computer' designation when filling out the slip. Also just include your address, no one needs to see XXtreme Hobbies for my 5x11x5 bearings, thanks.

Hobby stuff is pretty edgy.

Edit, I would love to buy from LHS, but most chains just carry Blade heli/HH planes. I lost interest in that a few years ago. I still like the T-28 and the Super Cub, but rarely fly them anymore. The stuff I need has to be ordered online/offshore.
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Old Oct 09, 2013, 10:28 PM
Promoting Model Aviation...
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United States, CA, Tehachapi
Joined Nov 2005
24,884 Posts
I heard today that Hodges Hobbies is closing its doors. Some of you might have heard of it. It's where SEFF and other big fun flys happen at.

Frank
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Old Oct 09, 2013, 11:43 PM
Got Another Prop?
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United States, VA, Hampton
Joined Aug 2006
585 Posts
Appears to be true based on their Facebook page

http://www.facebook.com/HodgesHobbies
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 09:53 AM
Lysdexic I'm
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Spring, TX
Joined Oct 2010
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After 30 something years in the Biz, Larry's Hobbies is closing their doors as of the 15th. An era gone by. It's sad.
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 02:32 PM
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Joined Apr 2010
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I don't want some of your business I want all of it!

My LHS told me that(title). He said he can get me anything I can order online. I told him that when I come in, it takes me an hour to wait my turn. He said send email with order. I sent large order, never got a response. Brought it to his attention, he apologized. Since then he is upset with me because I only go in to buy cheap stuff like props, etc.

Fact is. I order through him, he doesn't order until Thursday and it's Tuesday. Then when in comes in, I have to go up there and wait an hour to pick it up. (Hopefully I am called on the day he gets it. )

Price match he says?

Not unless you point out each item and how much cheaper you can get it elsewhere. At this point I am feeling a little cheap!

Needless to say, now when I need props, I get from tower. 1 dollar ships.

I just don't need the bs or waste of time.

Like someone said, if you don't stay up on rc tech, you are left behind!

Ohh. And guess what I have waiting for me at home today. AN RC BOX.

Just have to go home and open it!
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 03:18 PM
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Canada
Joined Nov 2000
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Just yesterday I tripped over a Hobby shop that I not noticed/considered... for years.
The thing was Huge inside and I saw at least 4 active staff members.
Real customers too.
Every imaginable bldg material I could ever want..and an entire wall of paints of every description, some I'd never even seen before.
Model airplanes: Corgi Cast ones :-) of 1/72 scale in most every Airplane version I've ever lusted after, even both Northrop wings; Prop and Jet. Very well made and detailed, I certainly could not do better. Not cheap tho.
Hundreds (true) of plastic model kits of 'anything'.
Lotsa Gamer paraphenalia, even Comic books. but ...NO... RC of Any description.
Seems ' that' might be it's Secret to success. Only us old twits do the RC thing these days. Certainly I was the oldest one in the shop... by a few decades.

A local and surprisingly nearby, decades old RC type hobby shop is only surviving on Inertia and It's looking unlikely to 'survive' much longer.

I've seen the future and It seems Fine to me.
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 03:29 PM
yank and bank!!
Joined May 2013
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We do it to ourselves. We all want the $12 2200mAh quality lipos, then wonder why there are no US jobs or US made stuff.

Yes, the LHS employees need to step up with good customer service.... but we also need to understand the price difference on items (especially in this niche hobby market) will be different if we want the convenience of being able to buy local. I bought my last plane at my very nice LHS because I want that awesome LHS to stay in business.
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 04:22 PM
I'm Addicted Already
Charlotte, NC
Joined Feb 2011
1,790 Posts
Went to the LHS last week for some carbon fiber rods... I was told they never carry carbon fiber!
So I went to find some larger control horns... needed 3 paks and they had one!
This goes on and on until I ask the sale person if I need a voltage regulator for my set up. (I knew I did). He told me NO, that the servos would only draw what they needed from the battery!
This place only orders once a week and then only goes through the Inbox once a week too, before they give you a call. Oh, that's right, they never did call me when my stuff came in.
Now, I just go in there to buy things I need right away, and things I know they have in stock.
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Old Oct 10, 2013, 05:32 PM
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Joined Oct 2005
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Carbon fiber rods

Quote:
Originally Posted by NCRealEstateGuy View Post
Went to the LHS last week for some carbon fiber rods... I was told they never carry carbon fiber!
So I went to find some larger control horns... needed 3 paks and they had one!
This goes on and on until I ask the sale person if I need a voltage regulator for my set up. (I knew I did). He told me NO, that the servos would only draw what they needed from the battery!
This place only orders once a week and then only goes through the Inbox once a week too, before they give you a call. Oh, that's right, they never did call me when my stuff came in.
Now, I just go in there to buy things I need right away, and things I know they have in stock.
Try Here,they have carbon fiber,control horns and much more.
http://www.bphobbies.com/view.asp?id=V819427 Bob
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