N Gauge Forum

General Category => N Gauge Discussion => Topic started by: macwales on January 25, 2013, 05:08:59 PM

Title: New product waits and shortages
Post by: macwales on January 25, 2013, 05:08:59 PM
Hi

Is everyone else as frustrated as me? In N Gauge these days manufacturers seem to tempt us with a year or two advance notification of their new products, and retailers invite pre-orders. On some web sites there are more ads for not in stock items items than there are for those that are actually available. It is then an age while we have to wait for new models to actually appear and then ....

When the new items are shipped to retailers and unless very quick you cannot get your hands on one. If you do and it's faulty and non repairable you cannot get a replacement. Many specific models sell out after a few days and I now hear tales of pr-orders not being fulfilled due higher than expected demand and short production runs leading to stock shortages.  Add to this consistent tales of deliberately very small production runs and large demand and you will see what frustrates me.

Recent examples seem to be Farish Austerity models, Dapol Flying Scotsman, Mallard and GWR Paniers.

Gone are the days when you would drool with expectation at an available model, save up and then go and buy it from whoever was selling at the best deal!!

What a mess the market seems to be in. Please discuss!!

Cheers

Mac >:(
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Hailstone on January 25, 2013, 05:36:38 PM
I remember when all that was available to beginners were the Graham Farish 94xx & Holden J69's both with the absolutely awful plastc chassis, or the equally crude Lima micro trains.

There has never been a better time to be an N Gauge modeller with a list of available items that would astonish anyone from even the mid 80's.
True the runs are limited, but If you really really must have it, pre-order as a lot of us now do. As for quality, I admit I have been lucky over the last 7 years and only had to return 1 loco out of all those I have bought, but reading through the various threads in this forum, the quality issue would not appear to be a major one 
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: woodbury22uk on January 25, 2013, 05:41:11 PM
I'd say the best policy is to relax and not be frustrated by something none of us control. Today's market is as you describe it. Despite development work being undertaken in the UK much of the CAD work is outsourced to the Far East, and the manufacturing capacity there has its own long lead times. If you have very deep pockets you might be able to change it but the situation you describe seems to apply to all small-sized specialised markets not just model trains. My policy is to pre-order early from a reliable supplier, so far that has worked for me. Even when there have been shortages they have not stopped my order being fulfilled.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: PLD on January 25, 2013, 06:59:48 PM
I can see it can be frustrating at times, but it a heck of a lot better than the situation 10 years ago... You would get one new loco per year from the one and only manufacturer, whereas now there's half a dozen each per year from 2 major manufacturers plus a few more from smaller manufacturers...

Yes there was a regular supply of every type but it would be produced with only one identity per livery which was churned out year after year. Now you still get a quota of most types every two or so years and with different identities...

Some new models do tend to be anounced years in advance [not all are anounced in advance - there was plenty of complaints about Dapol keeping the Paniers secret until they were almost ready so they can't win...] I'd say be patient and take it as time to save up; and if you do miss out, you can't say you didn't have notice in time to place your order! It also gives notice to the other manufacturers of what is planned so as to avoid or at least reduce duplication and we benefit by getting something different from the second manufacturer instead...

Paul
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: B757-236GT on January 25, 2013, 09:32:48 PM
Indeed apart from the 56s most of dapols recent MI releases have turned up somewhere discounted so it is possible to get some a little past release date, im not so clued up on the steam era but i think the 9Fs and Q1s seem to be quite hard to get hold of but not impossible. Farish i think do bigger runs and also do repeat runs of wagons so they should be reasonably easy to get hold of.

In terms of affording it all, some shops offer a pre order scheme where you can pay a sum every month which is very useful if it is indeed 2 years from annoucement to delivery but it does sometimes does smart as we all want a new toy to play with and not have to wait.

Richard
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Newportnobby on January 25, 2013, 09:57:44 PM
Is it possible that Farish and Dapol are using pre orders to judge which era/livery to bring in first? :hmmm:
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: 4x2 on January 25, 2013, 10:19:14 PM
I have to say i think it's very frustrating...

Call me crazy, but i swear the idea behind selling models was to make money ?

This idea of limited runs - say 200 units, and 'when they're gone they're gone....' what's all that about ?  ???

The Dapol Pannier sold out in a week, they could have sold three times as many !  :dunce:

Farish 9F was advertised for two years.... nothing !  :veryangry:

No particular point here, just letting off some steam... But even the most hardened N gauge enthusiast must be fed up with the random way things are announced/released.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: edwin_m on January 25, 2013, 10:31:32 PM
In some cases they are trading on scarcity value - if everybody knows there are only a limited number of a product available those who want it are more likely to buy quickly (and close to full price) because they think they may miss out otherwise. 

I've also heard it said that there are collectors who will buy one of every variant produced, so would buy five if two hundred each were produced in five liveries rather than just one if it was a run of 1000 all the same.  However I don't recall ever "meeting" anyone like this on forums so I'm not sure if they really exist!
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Dock Shunter on January 25, 2013, 11:08:55 PM


I've also heard it said that there are collectors who will buy one of every variant produced, so would buy five if two hundred each were produced in five liveries rather than just one if it was a run of 1000 all the same.  However I don't recall ever "meeting" anyone like this on forums so I'm not sure if they really exist!

Oh they exist alright they don't frequent forums such as this because they have no interest in actually running the locos they buy.....add into the mix those people who are buying not to run or collect but to sell at inflated prices on the likes of ebay when a run of a model has sold out and this goes some way to explaining why genuine people who want to buy models to run them are missing out..... :veryangry:


 
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 26, 2013, 08:40:20 AM

Call me crazy, but i swear the idea behind selling models was to make money ?

This idea of limited runs - say 200 units, and 'when they're gone they're gone....' what's all that about ?


I think we've learnt, from Hornby in OO as well as the N gauge manufacturers, that the issue these days is getting production slots in the factories. They seem to be the thing that is scarce.

There's little point in tying up production with second and third batches of product that won't quickly sell out, because the initial demand was mostly satisfied by the first batch, and destined only to end up sitting in the warehouse because dealers won't take the risk and order them. Plus, of course, there seems to be a natural propensity for purchasers to be attracted to, and spend thier money on, the new shiney stuff just off the boat for the first time.

But, while wating for that ellusive RTR model, you could spend the time enjoyably building a kit and doing some real modelling. That'll help calm the nerves and anticipation. :D

H.

Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Karhedron on January 26, 2013, 09:14:27 AM
I think the current situation has its advantages. Batch production means we get far more new models than in the old days. back in the Poole era, Graham Farish would introduce one or two new models per year with the rest of the catalogue being reruns of existing models (often without even bothering to change the running number).

Announcing models in advance allows modellers to give feedback on the R&D process (Dapol in particular take feedback on RMWeb). It also gives us time to save up for things. Not all models have a long wait. The Dapol panniers took about 6 months between announcement and hitting the shelves IIRC.

Even if models are not available in the shops, I have never had trouble tracking down what I want. In the case of the Dapol Panniers, there are 2 more versions coming out in the next few months so they have not been discontinued. The first batch has sold well which means there is a good chance of future batches.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: PLD on January 26, 2013, 10:21:07 AM
This idea of limited runs - say 200 units, and 'when they're gone they're gone....' what's all that about ?  ???
The Dapol Pannier sold out in a week, they could have sold three times as many !  :dunce:

In the old Poole Days there was a thousand of class XYZ made in ABC Rail livery, but they all had the same running number. If you only wanted one and with that number - you were sorted, if you wanted more than one or a different number - tough: you'd got to renumber it...

Now, you'll get 400 on release in ABC Rail livery split between two different running numbers, and provided they sell reasonably well, another 400 very soon after with another two running numbers, and so on until demand tails off...
While admittedly you do need to be organised and get your order in quickly if you want a specific loco, but generally a far better arrangement for anyone wanting multiples of the same loco with different identites, and also means that supply reacts to demand so manaufacturers and dealers have much less capital tied up in stock sat unsold on shelves so can put the money into the types that do sell and developing new products...
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: macwales on January 26, 2013, 01:10:07 PM
Hi

Thanks for all the discussion points so far.

Here a few additions

Manufacturers need to get better at predicting demand - surely this is crucial to securing maximum profits and too short production runs on models that anyone can see will be popular works against this.

The different names and running numbers issues for those that want particular locos and numbers could be sorted by production of renaming kits included with purchases.

The issue of promised delivery dates and long waits for new items would be less if we as enthusiasts were not at times so focused on minute detail that no one but us can see. Criticised colours and exact scale measurements sometimes seem to cause long delays and must lead to price increases.

If we look in published works at loco reviews I find that often locos are criticised for very minor scale defects and colour variations when many buyers are not that bothered. Some colour criticisms seem to suggest that the critic knows exactly what colour the prototype was even when most of us surely see colours differently and all colours fade or get dirty after being applied in real life.

What do you all think? Are we as enthusiasts making life too difficult for manufactures by being just too picky in our views on appearances when the models really are OK. Are manufacturers reacting too much  to this?

Does all this increase prices and cause delays?

Cheers

Mac
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: davecttr on January 26, 2013, 01:55:48 PM
It must be very frustrating for new modellers when they find that stuff they want was a limited production run and no longer available.

Dapol ferrywagon/cargowaggon - can't get them. i suppose I am lucky as i have 12 but I would like another 4. were they not good sellers?

Suffering from Pendolino frustration i have the majority of a Pretendolino but have been waiting ages for the buffet. I would also like an original MK3 Virgin set but, guess what, no Mk3 DVT's!

What manufacturers should consider is that their calculated demand may well recur in future years.

At least farish still seem to have large production runs and it migh be a good idea to invest in a couple of dozen Mk3 coaches for future application of vinyls.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: class37025 on January 26, 2013, 02:26:47 PM
quote from macwales

The different names and running numbers issues for those that want particular locos and numbers could be sorted by production of renaming kits included with purchases.



IIRC, didn't Dapol do a couple of locos without numbers, but with numbers included to add.

seems a good way to go, as you don't need to strip off the old ones, which might deter some, and you could then just add the numbers required.

perhaps even as an additional offering, rather than instead of the numbered ones.

even things like triple grey with no sector markings, ready for the modeller to add sector and numbers to suit.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: kester on January 26, 2013, 02:57:21 PM
The rise of 3D printing might help with shortages.  I can imagine a time when we can have UK-produced products and "on-demand" production.  I have been following the excellent 3-D printing work by people here on the forum, and the quality of the printing is getting better all the time (and dropping in cost). I realise it doesn't help with parts of the chassis, motors and some of the other parts - but it is a start.

kester
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: PLD on January 26, 2013, 11:05:08 PM
IIRC, didn't Dapol do a couple of locos without numbers, but with numbers included to add.

seems a good way to go, as you don't need to strip off the old ones, which might deter some, and you could then just add the numbers required.

perhaps even as an additional offering, rather than instead of the numbered ones.

even things like triple grey with no sector markings, ready for the modeller to add sector and numbers to suit.

I don't recall Dapol doing so in N gauge but I think both they and Heljan have done in 00. They were by all reports exceedingly poor sellers - many cries of it being 'too difficult' to do...

Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: 4x2 on January 27, 2013, 02:19:22 AM
Class 73 in large logo blue - first batch i think...
I bought one and it was fairly easy to do.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 27, 2013, 09:13:51 AM

The issue of promised delivery dates and long waits for new items would be less if we as enthusiasts were not at times so focused on minute detail that no one but us can see. Criticised colours and exact scale measurements sometimes seem to cause long delays and must lead to price increases.


That sounds like you are saying we need to accept incorrectly scaled, inaccurate and wrongly coloured models so we get them quicker and cheaper. Sorry, but I don't subscribe to that - I'd rather wait a little to make sure that the product is 'right'.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: macwales on January 27, 2013, 11:09:13 AM

The issue of promised delivery dates and long waits for new items would be less if we as enthusiasts were not at times so focused on minute detail that no one but us can see. Criticised colours and exact scale measurements sometimes seem to cause long delays and must lead to price increases.


That sounds like you are saying we need to accept incorrectly scaled, inaccurate and wrongly coloured models so we get them quicker and cheaper. Sorry, but I don't subscribe to that - I'd rather wait a little to make sure that the product is 'right'.

H.

Not quite suggesting that - just wondering if manufacturers are now too sensitive to these few criticisms when to the majority the model is fine. Perhaps this is all due to magazine reviewers looking for minute defects so as to mark models with a percentage number. I have heard of recent delays of months being due to very minor amendments to designs or colours. Of course I think that models should be to the correct scale and colour but the point about colour is who knows what the correct one is? I feel sympathy with folk who get, say, a new GWR green loco that is a different hue from one they have had for some time but has that one faded or was it incorrect in the first place? There seem no answers to this that are not based only on opinion. My main point remains that new models today are vastly better than of old but are we delaying them coming out by insisting on a perfection that is unobtainable?

However I do support the getting better and better trend.

Cheers

Mac
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: EtchedPixels on January 27, 2013, 01:12:02 PM
One of the problems the manufacturers face is that they either announce stuff well in time or they risk colliding with the decisions of a rival and both producing the same model.

So at one level its a cynical business technique for "owning" a forthcoming model, but thats also probably helping the range of models a lot.

Dave Jones also said the N market is saturated so they had cut the numbers produced of each model, which in turn drives up prices but is also necessary to get the money back to do new stuff. I can't see that changing until the economy changes and given our national debt is now higher than two years ago, food prices are soarig and we are in a third recession in rapid succession I can't see that changing for some time.

I should probably go and start doing kits of non UK models  :hmmm:

Alan
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 27, 2013, 05:31:16 PM

My main point remains that new models today are vastly better than of old but are we delaying them coming out by insisting on a perfection that is unobtainable?


Accuracy (within manufacturing tolerances) is not opinion and is not unobtainable - it is achievable. What is not acceptable to be palmed off with items that don't scale out accurately (like the Farish Scenecraft buses) or have the wrong grille type (like the Dapol class 56) or have fictional detail (like the Farish class 24 roof). I'd rather they were delayed to correct such things.

H. 
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: BobB on January 27, 2013, 06:05:32 PM
An interesting thread which has prompted me to pre-order a class 33/0 in blue/yellow.

It seems to me that the biggest problem is that those new to the hobby may not be aware of this increasing trend to the extent that they end up paying a fortune (such as using e-bay) or they have to put up with running models that are not typical of their modeled location and/or time.

Having said this, the problem seems to be worse for locomotives (or complete trains such as dmu's and emu's) and to a lesser extent the passenger coaches. Trucks on the other hand seem to be available for quite a long time after their initial release.

I suppose it all comes down to demand. If we buy it, we'll get a second chance to buy it again !
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: davecttr on January 27, 2013, 08:05:57 PM
Maybe in the not to distant future 3D printing will achieve the quality to make problems with production runs a moot point. The model will be produced on demand as required.

the major manufacturers will have to adjust to this as they might find themselves with a shrinking market as people print their own trains!
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 28, 2013, 02:40:20 PM

Not quite suggesting that - just wondering if manufacturers are now too sensitive to these few criticisms when to the majority the model is fine.


So why shouldn't it be acceptable to everyone? Quite often the majority 'miss' errors until someone points it out.

H
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Matthew-peter on January 28, 2013, 05:39:31 PM
I have to admit that personally it does frustrate me, I appreciate that problems can arise in production, but if that is expected than announcement should not be made until the prototype has been approved and a date set for production and release from the manufacturer in China ( I think thats where they are made now-a-days)

Another annoying thing for me is that after short runs, ebay floods with the items for extortionate prices  :veryangry:, which suggests that some one has bought them just to sell at a profit. which is obviously annoying for those who ACTUALLY want one of the said items.

Just my two cents.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: EtchedPixels on January 28, 2013, 08:06:22 PM
Another annoying thing for me is that after short runs, ebay floods with the items for extortionate prices  :veryangry:, which suggests that some one has bought them just to sell at a profit. which is obviously annoying for those who ACTUALLY want one of the said items.

Welcome to capitalism   :beers:

This is IMHO probably a good thing in the longer term - its showing there is scope for resllers who sell at RRP to simply "sit out" the box shifters and smooth the market out a bit.

Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: bees on January 28, 2013, 11:00:23 PM
I've just read through this thread, I agree with most remarks but have also realised something that Dapol, Bachfar, etc...... could do to improve.

It's a well known fact that some liveries sell alot better than others, maybe, just maybe, these liveries should be produced with no numbering, ready to apply supplied transfers, or sold separately. I think in this case more modellers would buy multiple vehicles. For example, class 47 in BR Blue. Another issue I notice is that Bachfar/Dapol produce all these wonderful Loco's but just don't appear to produce the correct percentage of rolling stock, by this I mean, a typical loco hauled passenger rake would have much more TSO's. Bachfar appear to produce the same amount of each coach(TSO, FO, BSO, Buffet, etc....). Again, this would be another opportunity to have un-numbered vehicles, especially TSO's, SK's and FO's, and have either a supplied transfer sheet, or what would be more appealing to Dapol/Bachfar sold separately but cheaply!!! This would promote buying more examples and/or detailing your own vehicles (modelling).

On a different note, one thing that has really irritated me is; A company 2 years ago advertising a multiple unit, then showing several months later CAD drawings showing how far they've gotten with their production. Nothing else has been said since and apparently they will not be bringing it out this year either. A question was publicly asked whether they have dropped the planned production but they haven't answered that either! A company, i think shouldn't announce a release if they then later would back out.

Sorry For The Rant!!!
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 28, 2013, 11:01:21 PM

Another annoying thing for me is that after short runs, ebay floods with the items for extortionate prices, which suggests that some one has bought them just to sell at a profit.


Of course, you could always do the same. Or if you don't fancy reselling, just buy one at the launch price and time.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 28, 2013, 11:05:26 PM

It's a well known fact that some liveries sell alot better than others, maybe, just maybe, these liveries should be produced with no numbering, ready to apply supplied transfers, or sold separately.


Dapol tried that, as mentioned earlier in the thread, but apparently sales were poor. Seems theres too many people who find it difficult to apply transfers (and I seem to recall they were just simply dry rub down types).

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Karhedron on January 29, 2013, 09:04:54 AM
A company, i think shouldn't announce a release if they then later would back out.
So they should stick to their announcements even if market conditions change or competitors bring out the same product?

Companies exist to make a profit. A product may be announced at a time they think they can make a profit but that subsequently changes. Take the Farish 9F, they announced this long before it was ready for production. In the meantime Dapol released theirs and it sold well. After initial runs  they were able to drop the price (perhaps they had payed off the cost of the toolings). Market demand was satisfied and Dapol could sell their existing model for less than Farish would need to charge for a new one. So they dropped it.

Or Dapol's Pendolino. This was announced along with other electric models but those proved to be poor sellers. With no evidence that the Pendolino would sell better, Dapol put it "on the back burner". Yes it is frustrating for modellers who want one (unless Hornby decide to release one under the Arnold branding) but Dapol and their stockists cannot afford to have slow sellers hanging about.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 01:36:01 PM

A company, i think shouldn't announce a release if they then later would back out.


So they should stick to their announcements even if market conditions change or competitors bring out the same product?


Exactly. I'm sure that when they announce a new product it is done in all good faith. But, of course, they do not know what will happen in the future (while they are developing the model). Should circumstances change that would make continuing with developement pointless and the model not viable as a business propositon they ought to have the option of changing their plans, just as any of us have the right to change our mind - after all they haven't entered in to a binding contract and no consideration has passed.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: macwales on January 29, 2013, 02:23:59 PM
Hi

Some very diverse views in the replies - thanks for all of those.

While I expect no one will be saying that manufacturers cannot change their minds when bringing out new models I still  think the main point is the long delays caused by a variety I suspect, of non commercial reasons - mistakes in scale, alterations to CAD designs caused by enthusiast's criticisms (whether or not justified) and perceived incorrect colours.
In the last two years some of these delays must have cost a packet and were many months. If we knew the cost would it be worth it?
Add to this that all production runs seem to be the same no matter how popular the model will certainly be.You only have to peruse all the unsold A3s and A4s that are in stock at  on-line retailers but can you get a 'Flying Scotsman' or a 'Mallard'? Surely everyone would expect these to sell more than a small production run and in my view should always be available if n gauge is not to remain a small insular interest as these are the famous engines that will attract newbies into the hobby. If I were a manufacturer I would have a large stock ready for release when the National Museum re-exhibits the revitalised prototypes.

Another example is how quickly that recent  'Great Western' lettered green panier tank sold out before Xmas. It was bound to be popular. If that manufacturer had made more items then it would have profited considerably. Instead many prospective customers are brassed off with what seems to them to be inept market manipulation. I am sure that is not quite correct but we are suffering from a very strange market place where there continues to be pent up market demand that cannot be satisfied in a reasonable timespan. 

Cheers

Mac
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Karhedron on January 29, 2013, 02:36:15 PM
You only have to peruse all the unsold A3s and A4s that are in stock at  on-line retailers but can you get a 'Flying Scotsman' or a 'Mallard'? Surely everyone would expect these to sell more than a small production run and in my view should always be available if n gauge is not to remain a small insular interest as these are the famous engines that will attract newbies into the hobby. If I were a manufacturer I would have a large stock ready for release when the National Museum re-exhibits the revitalised prototypes.


I am pretty sure Dapol have stated elsewhere that they are planning future production runs of both Flying Scotsman and Mallard so they will be back. As to "having a large stock ready", Dapol have had their fingers burned by flooding the market before. Better to do small runs that can be repeated if necessary rather than be left with unsold stock.

Another example is how quickly that recent  'Great Western' lettered green panier tank sold out before Xmas. It was bound to be popular. If that manufacturer had made more items then it would have profited considerably.
How were Dapol to know it was "bound to be popular"? It is easy to say that with hindsight. Farish on the other hand seem to have found that pre-nationalisation liveries do not sell as well as BR ones (to the point that some of their new locos are only being released in BR liveries). There is justification from their main competitor for not overdoing such an early livery (1923 - 1934).

All you have done is picked 3 examples of models that have sold out and said that Dapol should have known they would be popular. On what basis should they have known that? It is in Dapol's interest to see that all their runs sell, not that shops are left with stock on their shelves for months (or even years). From this perspective, small runs in many liveries that can easily be repeated if they prove popular makes the most commercial sense.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 02:39:06 PM

I still  think the main point is the long delays caused by a variety I suspect, of non commercial reasons - mistakes in scale, alterations to CAD designs caused by enthusiast's criticisms (whether or not justified) and perceived incorrect colours.


Sorry, but that in not correct (IMO). Errors are not perceptions. If a mistake has been made, in scale or whatever, it's factual not opinion, and is not caused by enthusiasts criticisms. If it needs to be corrected then it is not a non- commercial reason and is not the fault of the enthusiats or customer. The delay is caused by the manufacturer not getting it right first time.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 02:43:20 PM

I am pretty sure Dapol have stated elsewhere that they are planning future production runs of both Flying Scotsman and Mallard so they will be back. As to "having a large stock ready", Dapol have had their fingers burned by flooding the market before. Better to do small runs that can be repeated if necessary rather than be left with unsold stock.


Yep, Dapol have gone on record as saying that the N gauge market is saturated and consequently that is why they now produce smaller batch sizes. That makes more business sense than ending up with huge unsold stocks, and should the line prove to be popular to then produce another batch in order to more accurately balance/match supply with demand.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: bees on January 29, 2013, 04:57:13 PM
Hi there, I do see where you guys are coming from. But what I was trying to get at (obviously badly, lol), was that they shouldn't announce anything until they are much closer to release, it's just a form of teasing otherwise!

It's just like (this is meant as a light hearted analogy), when SWMBO puts on your favourite lingerie :D, the one she looks really, really hot in, for a night out :beers: with you and telling you your getting it later ;). Then when she gets home, drunk, she falls asleep almost immediately :sleep:!!

H - I know Dapol attempted the unnumbered loco's approach, but if I remember correctly it was with the class 73, something that modellers would only have/want 1 or 2 at the most. Whereas if this concept was adopted more for rolling stock, especially TSO's, SK's, etc..... on reflection Loco's are not the right idea except maybe 37's, 47's, 66's, classes that there was alot of examples and only in specific liveries; Two Tone Green, BR Blue, Railfreight, EWS, etc.....  The same thing can also be done with steam, especially GWR loco's all in the same livery and very popular!!!
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: dr deltic on January 29, 2013, 05:17:50 PM
While Bachmann can afford (?) runs of 5000 of this that or the other, is not the same story for other manufacturers. Also holding large amounts of stock =cost of storage.
It is a fine balance in so many ways that affects production of models. After waiting for over 20 years we we are a little bit spoilt now as it is boom time despite the economic climate for model production. Can't help thinking there have been one or two boo boo's of late in choices made, 4 CEP for example especially in un refurbished form.

For me, eagerly anticipate the arrival of Dapols 142, but would rather it was right and a good one before hitting the shelves rather than a compromise to hit the shelves quicker.

Got my second new 20 today, and been watching and waiting the websites for its arrival. Was a bit frustrated about the wait but they have changed the buffers which for other than a few early build loco's would have been wrong for the majority of the disc head code version in blue. Is little things like that which make it worth the wait sometimes.

These are just my thoughts (I have so far resisted the blue and grey 412 as is it would just never get a run, fab though it is. When it gets heavily discounted, and I have a horrible for Bachmann feeling it will happen, i will give in!!)

H made a comment about calming down and doing some proper modelling, with a half built 310 and 309 on the bench, he is right. Happy modelling !!
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 07:12:40 PM

But what I was trying to get at (obviously badly, lol), was that they shouldn't announce anything until they are much closer to release, it's just a form of teasing otherwise!


It's only teasing if you let it be.

I don't see anything wrong with announcing intentions before development work starts and it makes sense as it advises other potential manufacturers - otherwise they could spend a lot on research and development before announcing it when close to release only to find other manufacturers have also done the same, or even worse we could have spent a lot of time partially scratch-building one.

Then we'd end up with duplicated products, the market flooded with the same thing and loads going unsold.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: moogle on January 29, 2013, 09:37:43 PM

But what I was trying to get at (obviously badly, lol), was that they shouldn't announce anything until they are much closer to release, it's just a form of teasing otherwise!


It's only teasing if you let it be.

I don't see anything wrong with announcing intentions before development work starts and it makes sense as it advises other potential manufacturers - otherwise they could spend a lot on research and development before announcing it when close to release only to find other manufacturers have also done the same, or even worse we could have spent a lot of time partially scratch-building one.

Then we'd end up with duplicated products, the market flooded with the same thing and loads going unsold.

H.

Spot on there H!
We've had that a few times in recent years, class 66 is one if I remember rightly, and it doesn't do the market or us modellers any good having duplicate products.
I for one would rather know that somethings coming eventually and then wait for it to arrive.
And with modern technology the waiting 'gap' between announcement & availability is getting shorter & shorter!  :)
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Sprintex on January 29, 2013, 09:51:21 PM
What's the phrase? "You can't please all of the people all of the time"  ::)

For the first time in gawd-knows-how-long we have more new models than ever before, much better detailed with working lights where appropriate, and at least two major manufacturers competing for our modelling-money which helps to keep stagnation from setting in. And are people happy? No.

Yes it's slightly frustrating when you have to wait ages for a new model, but as Grahame pointed out how would you feel if you spent hours scratchbuilding something only for Farish/Dapol to bring out an RTR version two weeks later? And as for small batch runs no-one can afford overstocks these days, so either pre-order or wait for the next batch, it will probably come eventually  ;)

Better that than our major suppliers going "breasts-northwards" through bad economic management.


Paul
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: class37025 on January 29, 2013, 10:00:21 PM
been rearranging my rakes, and need 2 x blue / grey mk.1 SOs.

can't seem to find any, looks like sold out.

decided I'd use SKs instead, which were showing at Hattons as preorder, but they have now disappeared.

while I understand about over stocking, I must say I find it annoying that you almost have to order your total possible requirement as soon as they are preorder, as if you want to add a few months later they are sold out.

it must be possible to manage a reasonable supply, surely.

I wonder how many people who would start into model railways either don't because they cannot get what they want, or drop out when they find that they cannot expand, other than by getting new models, rather than being able to add more of what they have.

even some sort of timetable of production would help, so at least if the SO you want is sold out, you can see that it will be run again, whether with the same number or a new one, in say three months time.

just my views for what they are worth.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: davecttr on January 29, 2013, 10:16:39 PM
Most of my frustration comes from items that have been produced being no longer available.

Take Mk3 coaches. A Virgin buffet with buffers is available but that does not make a train. If and when the other required coaches are produced you still have the DVT missing. If a DVT was available it is very likely i would just buy the rest of the rake from Farish in any livery and apply vinyls.

Or why produce two versions of a MK3 with and without buffers. Are they so basically different that just cutting the buffers off for HST's is not an acceptable solution?
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 10:22:51 PM

been rearranging my rakes, and need 2 x blue / grey mk.1 SOs.
can't seem to find any, looks like sold out.
decided I'd use SKs instead, which were showing at Hattons as preorder, but they have now disappeared.


Sometimes it's a matter of searching around. Signal Box appear to have blue/grey Mk1 SKs in stock.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: H on January 29, 2013, 10:33:51 PM
Most of my frustration comes from items that have been produced being no longer available.


You do need to buy when things you want are available - that's the flip side of batch production and it's something that needs to be understood. You can't really expect manufacturers to make batches of every model indefinately. Tastes and buying patterns change, moulds wear out, production slots need to be used for new models, and so on.


Or why produce two versions of a MK3 with and without buffers. Are they so basically different that just cutting the buffers off for HST's is not an acceptable solution?


The problem is that often for many it seems that the differences are beyond the modelling effort that they are prepared to undertake to make the changes. For example it's very quick and easy to change a number on a loco but still we have people calling for either numberless versions or the numbers they want produced RTR by the manufacturer.

H.
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: class37025 on January 29, 2013, 11:18:54 PM

been rearranging my rakes, and need 2 x blue / grey mk.1 SOs.
can't seem to find any, looks like sold out.
decided I'd use SKs instead, which were showing at Hattons as preorder, but they have now disappeared.


Sometimes it's a matter of searching around. Signal Box appear to have blue/grey Mk1 SKs in stock.

H.

thanks for that, on my way to their website :thumbsup:
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: macwales on November 20, 2013, 02:09:58 PM
Hi

Finally managed to get my hand on a Dapol Mallard - only a 13 month wait - so not too bad - just an eightieth of life expectancy - great runner but poor quality tender lettering.

This prompted me to again peruse the Dapol 2012/13 catalogue to re-contemplate my Xmas wish list.

With one month still to go there seems (to the frustration of many on the Forum) no sign of the Schools Class or the many variants of the Bulleid Pacific from the steam loco pages.

I am still saving up fo, ready for the appearance of  the promised Farish Stannier Pacifics, the crimson Jubilee and the Fairburn Tanks.

So this year 6 steam locos wanted by a customer and only one up and running. Very frustrating!!

I could get a Dapol Hall, but on my layout at long distance no one but me would see the difference to my Ixiom Manor, so I will  I? Probably not.

Does this state of waiting make us more or less likely on the whole to despair and give up on N gauge? I got a wee book from Hattons recently with my Mallard order that detailed what locos are available in RTR. There are lots more in that nasty 00 gauge. (OK that's heresy - I was only joking).

Back to watching the Mallard go round.

 :)
Cheers

Mac  :beers:
 
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: red_death on November 20, 2013, 02:26:25 PM
Hi Mac

The OO people don't have it much better with long production delays on much of their stuff...

Don't know about steam, but certainly for D&E there isn't that much more available in OO than N (except for a few rather bizarre pilot scheme locos and DJM are looking to fill some of those gaps!).

Cheers, Mike
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: Newportnobby on November 20, 2013, 05:40:13 PM
Hi Mac,

I can appreciate it can be frustrating with the long wait from announcement to arrival, but due to the sheer amount I have on pre-order I am somewhat glad of the time to save up/beg relations for vouchers etc
Title: Re: New product waits and shortages
Post by: portland-docks on November 20, 2013, 07:43:06 PM
think i have to say...

i have NEVER pre-ordered any locomotive and i have managed to get every locomotive i wanted one way or another, mostly get them at exhibitions, some stuff at local model shop but most i get at Warley every year, like this year i have a list of some locos i would like, and i know for a fact i will get each one as warley usually has every loco made somewhere in there