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Jan 21, 2020, 06:28 AM
Ldm
Ldm
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Discussion

Top Flight Zero -old news ?


This may be old news for some but I just noticed yesterday that the Top Flight Zero is now dead and buried !
Very sad, this seemed like a great Giant scale project !
Perhaps with the new release of the Seagull Zero, Horizon felt it was time to move on ?
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Jan 21, 2020, 09:22 AM
Arrowhead
The whole Top Flite line seems to be petering out. Kinda makes me wonder if this was just some residual stuff the factory had for Hobbico, and HH decided to see if they could clear it. Hopefully I’m wrong...
Jan 21, 2020, 10:20 AM
Build a scale plane already!!!
scale_only's Avatar
Dead and buried???

Looks like they are still in stock @ Tower in both ARC and ARF,, and they just re introduced the ARCs on three models,,

Is there some announcement I missed here?
Jan 21, 2020, 02:38 PM
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bluffman's Avatar
I bought mine in December.
Jan 22, 2020, 04:38 AM
Ldm
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Guys , that is what I am trying to figure out ! Look at the parts for reorders, all discontinued on both Tower and Horizon on the Zero .
So despite the actual model being in-stock , I think the future is questionable on this Zero and possible others.
Jan 24, 2020, 12:31 PM
Registered User
I wish Horizon would give a straight answer on this. Are they killing the line (seems so). If so, that is a very sad thing.....

M
Jan 24, 2020, 12:42 PM
Build a scale plane already!!!
scale_only's Avatar
Hobby Companies have learned the truth of us Hobbists,, ya just can't make them happy,, doesn't matter what you do they'll still complain,, Not surprised at all they give out non committal answers,, Guys will just cry if they change their minds later.

Just look at this thread,, Some products are still available a few new products brought to market, but that's not good enough is it? If people were actually buying those products in sufficient numbers they would bring them back,, clearly that's just not happening.

I've been in the hobby for 45 years,, and for all that time hobby companies have been going out of business,,, Why? Because people have stopped buying their products in sufficient numbers to keep going,,

These are simple truths
Jan 26, 2020, 05:23 AM
Ldm
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Ahhhhh yes and no !
I have been importing product in food for 30 years.
I can only speak for the USA trends, we have a 24 month shelf life on new is news !
The USA consumer wants new new new. Avg innovation cycle 2 years .

The Hobby industry failed to capture new emerging consumers and lost their interest to the video industry. These kids are not stupid, they dont lack talent and in fact they are passionate about there hobby, its called gaming ! Until the AMA and the industry figure out that competition, Money and a common thread & need to be focused on the youth of the America the hobby will continue to decline and possibly be extinct in 20 years !

As far as buying trends, Hobby King introduced a very new stick in the spoke of the Hobby motor bike lol ! HK was virtually factory to low margin wholesaler to direct consumer.
The existing USA distributor was -factory to importer to huge overhead branding marketing and warehouse to hobby shop & direct consumer.

Many USA distributors in the earlier years created their own assumed brands, Hobby Lobby, Hobby People , Great Planes, Horizon , Banana Hobby . The good ones like Horizon and Great Planes invested in R&D , while others simply re-branded models at a high markup ! Example Banana Hobby imported LX models under their own brand. Very common to this very day !
ESM was sold as Kondor models and so on !

As far as MOQs -minimum order quantity is set by the factory . The biggest risk is buying an MOQ , you pay in advance 20% to start production and 80% at port, no terms on your money and if the models dont sell, you cash is sitting in aging inventory.
Poor decisions , high MOQs and being disconnected with the consumer can kill a business.

If you look at the some of the rising stars in the hobby industry “Motion RC” , many of the new introductions offer “ pre-buy -pre deliver discounts” ! Super Smart !!! Motion is getting the money before the container lands and driving interest with “buy it now or take a chance and lose it “ .
Its simple math to say “people are buying less so companies go our of business “ .
Taking the 10,000 ft view vs in the weeds and add everything in this thread up ,
1) an aging demographics with zero successful strategic planning to attract a new consumer

2) a changing climate from building to ARFs to foam and coupled with an aging RC club unwilling to accept these changes and driving the new consumer even further away from the hobby.
Just look at the tone of the last post, I am the OP of this thread and not one comment had attitude, but we love to eat our own in the RC community.
We judge scratch builder vs kit builders, we judge builder vs ARFs, we judge wood Arfs vs foam and on and on !

Lol you wonder why the RC community is dwindling ? Our own clubs can not recognize the older 75 plus age members that come to the field, unload their models for fear of judgment and intimidation from existing club members ! How do I know , why do I see it ? 13 years as a USA hockey advance coached, the weakest players are at the back of the line waiting to see how a drill is done, the best are at the front !
So many times the oldest RCers , wont even fly when they come to the field , that is how bad we judge , we take tone vs help and accept our fellow modelers.

3) Hobby Distributors introducing models that appeal to 10% of the industry and income at $1000 or more out of box and $2500 to $3000 to complete ?????
4)The lack of exposure from impulse retail ( Hobby Shops )perpetuates the lack of introduction
From a walk by , a walk in opportunity to be exposed to the hobby .
5) weak social media that does not link to the younger crowd, like TicToc and other formats that drive exposure
6) lack of national media events with cash awards that are outside of mainstream hobby events.
The hobby industry has been out -marketed by the gaming industry that now has reached cash events, college level credit, and trending for double digit growth . The un-cool goober rc guy , is a cool nerdy gamer who does not leave his house but to compete and rack up an opportunity to win a million in gamer price money !

That my friend is a 10,000 ft view of what s wrong with the hobby industry ! I have been a consumer products consultant for 10 of my 33 years and it’s super easy to always see that its the synergy of multiple events that crates the outcome , not just one.
Last edited by Ldm; Jan 26, 2020 at 05:48 AM.
Jan 26, 2020, 09:05 AM
Build a scale plane already!!!
scale_only's Avatar
Yeap, I'm a simple man,, and don't need to type out a distortion outlining all the points why the hobby has been shrinking to make a simple point,,, fewer buyers equals fewer products and fewer companies.

Will the Top Flite Zero and the rest of that line go away,,, of course,, in this hobby all product lines go away,, get one before they're gone
Jan 28, 2020, 05:39 AM
Ldm
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So back to the original drama free start of this thread, the Zero looks to be gone !
Not sure if demand was not meeting the minimum order quantity or Horizon just wants to move on but it’s getting discontinued per my assumption.
I guess its time to buy one if you want to own one !
Jan 28, 2020, 07:56 AM
Build a scale plane already!!!
scale_only's Avatar
You keep saying that,, but they are still in stock,, Do you have some info we don't have?
Jan 28, 2020, 08:43 PM
Ldm
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Yes, all the backup parts are discontinued and not on reorder.
One month ago they were on backorder.


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