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Old 06-15-2012, 05:00 AM   #1
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Default Hobby King Products ????? how are they?

I have been watching the Flits Test reviews and clips lately and have been considering buying a plane or two from Hobby King just to see how they are, but I am a bit leery about it. So has anyone bought anything from HK and if so what?, and did you get what you paid for?, or complete junk?

Here is the first plane I am considering is http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/uh_viewItem.asp?idProduct=14465EPP FPV> AS you can see if the link worked it is somewhat purpose built for FPV but I plan on using it as a camera plane and possibly FPV later. The motor they recommend is out of stock but I will buy an EMP motor from Abell Hobby as they are almost as cheap, and with all the bad reviews about the servo's at HK I will be using something better. The second plane I am considering slightly is a stick built Edge 540
http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/s...Warehouse_.htm l but really not sure about that. So any thoughts on HK and their products???
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:09 AM   #2
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Personally I have bought numeroue parts and 2 planes and I have not had a problem with them. Timeliness is a bit of a problem coming from the Int. warehouse and shipping can be quite high, but the US Warehouse seems to do a better job in both areas.

Happy flying may your crashes be limited and if they are not limited let them be cool.
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:18 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Fishbonez View Post
Personally I have bought numeroue parts and 2 planes and I have not had a problem with them. Timeliness is a bit of a problem coming from the Int. warehouse and shipping can be quite high, but the US Warehouse seems to do a better job in both areas.
Thanks for the info and yeah I have heard and read some other posts about the other than US warehouse so I only plan on buying from US. Even some LED light strips I was considering buying I found at Amazon for a much better price and in stock Just have to cut em and add a battery connector.

More input from anyone would be great.
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Old 06-15-2012, 05:55 AM   #4
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Quality can be a bit hit and miss, excellent on some products, dire on others, plus the descriptions of the items can sometimes be inaccurate. Best to read the reviews and if possible any reviews on the likes of this forum or RCGroups.
Generally customer service is poor especially if you buy from China in which case shipping often makes returning faulty products unrealistic.
Spares availability for their planes is also generally zero.

Having said all of this negative stuff; the price does make up for it. I buy a fair bit of product from HK in China (UK warehouse hasn't opened yet). I do my homework before buying and just accept that if it breaks or get damaged in transit I'm pretty much on my own. I can often buy two items from HK for the price of one locally so if the odd one proves faulty then I'm still ahead in the game.

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Old 06-15-2012, 06:41 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Quality can be a bit hit and miss, excellent on some products, dire on others, plus the descriptions of the items can sometimes be inaccurate. Best to read the reviews and if possible any reviews on the likes of this forum or RCGroups.
Generally customer service is poor especially if you buy from China in which case shipping often makes returning faulty products unrealistic.
Spares availability for their planes is also generally zero.

Having said all of this negative stuff; the price does make up for it. I buy a fair bit of product from HK in China (UK warehouse hasn't opened yet). I do my homework before buying and just accept that if it breaks or get damaged in transit I'm pretty much on my own. I can often buy two items from HK for the price of one locally so if the odd one proves faulty then I'm still ahead in the game.

Steve
In my own opinion the above is a spot on assessment of the situation as seen from my point of view. As we are over here in the UK there is little choice other than HK if you want anything like realistically priced electronics.
From my own experience you have to chose the reliable pieces of kit by carefully studying feedback from other users.
This put me onto their HXT900 9g servos which I have used in most of my models without issue. The oldest are over four years old and are still flying frequently in the same model.

Barry
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Old 06-15-2012, 09:48 AM   #6
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This discussion goes all over the map. If you are willing to pay top dollar to have almost every product perfect every time, they are not for you. If you are halfway intelligent, and have the common sense to realize that when you pay 1/5th the price for everything, there may be the occasional hicccup, it is a great resource!

Unfortunately, you get morons who do not understand how the economy works, and will bash Hobbyking when some order does not go as planned. Ignore these idiots and weigh the risk/reward for yourself. I have spent about $2k W/Hobbyking so far and have not had an issue yet. Will I? Most likely, yes!

It is a Hong Kong based company with bargain basement prices, the day will come when there is an issue. Am I gonna cry like a baby on here about it? No, I probably won't even post about it, You get what you pay far, and overall, Hobbyking has far delivered above what I have paid for from them. If you want to reply to my post in a negative manner, I don't care to read it, keep paying way to much in this hobby.

Edit: I feel this is worth adding, I have spent about $8K with Tower Hobbies, and NO issues. I have Spent about $900 with Horizon Hobbies, and have had an issue with every order. EVERY SINGLE ORDER, with no help from them after emails. Not one issue with HobbyKing! Don't always assume Foreign=Bad!
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Old 06-15-2012, 10:37 AM   #7
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You already have some good answers here. Do not place an order with them with anything in the order on backorder. I have had good luck with HK but always kept my expectations fairly low, especially in terms of shipping costs and delivery time. For planes, they have some impressive models. I've been keeping my eye on the Durafly line up.

To Jet's point, read the reviews on RCG, especially when you're considering buying something that's newly introduced. Example: They recently brought out the Avro Lancaster, an iconic British WW2 bomber. Sadly in the forums, they are having a lot of quality issues. Will they fix them in the next molds? I'm sure they will but the point here being, study before you buy.

On the USA warehouse? Double edge sword IMO. The shipping is less but they bump up the prices slightly to balance the difference. The other thing is that the number of SKU's they handle is far lower than the International site. What's happened to me is that if I'm ordering 2-4 items, the USA warehouse might only have 2 out of 4 of them. I end up going back to the International site. Apparently, HK is saying that by the end of the year all of their warehouses will have the same number of SKU's and stock levels. I'll wait and see.

In general, I don't think you can go wrong. There are other good sites for odds and ends(motors, servos, retracts, cables, etc) like Headsuprc, Grayson Hobby and Value Hobby that do a good job. Example: Typical shipping cost from Headsup is $2.00-$7.00. Compare that to HK. On the Radjet I bought, it almost cost as much to ship it as the plane itself.

Good luck !

Hawk
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Old 06-15-2012, 11:49 AM   #8
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I am buying all hardware from HobbyKing and the only issue is the delivery time - because the parcels are going through customs and it takes time.
I never had any problem with HK other than I picked a wrong item. The description and pictures are not always the best to decide but this is generally a problem with on-line shopping. Otherwise, I give a thumb up to HobbyKing.
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Old 06-15-2012, 01:50 PM   #9
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Here is a nutshell of my experience with them...

They started under one name - did such a poor job they had to change to another name. They didn't ship were borderline fraud and got in trouble with PayPal.

They changed their name a couple of times and started to clean up their act.

My real life experience with them has been:
  • Long ship times especially with batteries(getting a bit better recently)
  • ZERO backorder control (much like many other vendors it takes too long to get re-stocked)
  • High shipping prices
  • VERY VERY POOR packaging. I have ordered exactly 7 times from them. My last package was the FIRST to arrive with no damage.
  • ZERO customer service - if you get the wrong thing, broken thing or something breaks on use you have about zero chance of resolution. While they have made some small progress they are miles away from Hitec, Horizon, Tower and those industry leaders.
  • Poor QC controls (make sure you get what you ordered - they have sent the wrong stuff to me twice)
  • Overall poor quality - the one plane then sent me for review was a piece to total garbage Josh and Josh do talk about quality but they gloss it a bit
  • I have ordered batteries (due to good reviews from others) 3 times - every single time I have had problems with at least one pack. Others lasted only 20-30 cycles
  • Others rave about the servos - I don't they have largely been garbage IMHO
  • Never have what you want in the US warehouse
  • Great product prices!


In life my daddy taught me you get what you pay for. That is very much my experience with Hobby King.



With more vendors like HobbyPartz here in the states - I tend to order the same cheap components but get it quickly at nearly or less than Hobby King and I can return stuff!


My $0.02


MIke
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Old 06-15-2012, 03:22 PM   #10
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Some of us have little choice as prodfuct pricing is very attractive even if shipping costs are high and lead times are long. But given that what HK charge in $ - Hobby Shops in Riga (3 hrs drive from me) charge in Lats ... just under DOUBLE price. Some items in fact are 3 - 4x the price.
Given that a round trip to visit then is over $100 ...

I have had no damaged items from them so far and I order a lot ...

But I am angry that a backorder item I ordered so that I didn't miss out on when they FINALY get stock is STILL backorder ...

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Old 06-15-2012, 05:29 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by solentlife View Post
But I am angry that a backorder item I ordered so that I didn't miss out on when they FINALY get stock is STILL backorder ...
Rule # 1 when shopping with HK... NEVER buy backordered items

My experience isn't anything like as bad as Mike's. I've had a total of 20 orders and none have arrived damaged in any way. Also I've never had anything 'dead on arrival' and never had any shortages in my orders.

As I said in my first reply quality is variable but do your research and you are generally ok. I think the post cost is fair. Sure it can be expensive but it's coming a long way, I think they only charge actual shipping cost.

HK batteries is something I have shared some of Mike's experience with and i generally don't use them anymore. They have all worked ok when they arrived but none have lasted very well, the Nanotecs in particular go downhill quick in my experience.
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Old 06-15-2012, 06:39 PM   #12
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My experience, no issues, product quality or service wise.

I've had a few orders where I had backordered stuff, but was able to get on chat and switch them for other items, or just remove them from the order and have the rest of it shipped, then reordered the missing stuff when it came back in stock (the email alert system is nice!). No problems.

Now I pretty much only order HXT servos from them for my store. Everything else I get direct from the manufacturers now. But they are the only place to get HXTs.

I have never ordered any plane kits from them. Too scared.

Pat Gagnon

Owner - Nico Hobbies

Your source for micro pusher jets!
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Old 06-16-2012, 05:55 AM   #13
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Thank You all so much for your responses about HK products and services, this was what I was looking for. I plan on answering several posts directly if I remember how to do multiple quotes.. LOL
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Old 06-16-2012, 06:15 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by NFA Fabrication View Post
This discussion goes all over the map. If you are willing to pay top dollar to have almost every product perfect every time, they are not for you. If you are halfway intelligent, and have the common sense to realize that when you pay 1/5th the price for everything, there may be the occasional hicccup, it is a great resource!

Unfortunately, you get morons who do not understand how the economy works, and will bash Hobbyking when some order does not go as planned. Ignore these idiots and weigh the risk/reward for yourself. I have spent about $2k W/Hobbyking so far and have not had an issue yet. Will I? Most likely, yes!

It is a Hong Kong based company with bargain basement prices, the day will come when there is an issue. Am I gonna cry like a baby on here about it? No, I probably won't even post about it, You get what you pay far, and overall, Hobbyking has far delivered above what I have paid for from them. If you want to reply to my post in a negative manner, I don't care to read it, keep paying way to much in this hobby.

Edit: I feel this is worth adding, I have spent about $8K with Tower Hobbies, and NO issues. I have Spent about $900 with Horizon Hobbies, and have had an issue with every order. EVERY SINGLE ORDER, with no help from them after emails. Not one issue with HobbyKing! Don't always assume Foreign=Bad!

Just to explain my normal buying for reference, I usually buy middle of the road or slightly below, I know the best out there is usually the best for a reason and I know the under dog is there for a reason so I look for the right one for me its very rarely the best and so on I hope you get my point.

One thing why would I reply negatively to this post? and don't take that the wrong way I'm not always a nice guy I can on occasion be a complete ass I want to thank you for your opinion of HK.

I don't ASSume that foreign = bad, if you check out my other post from like a week ago "Watt meter readings" I feature my Pilot RC Sbach 342 in 2 vids. When those boxes showed up their was made in China all over those boxes and it is a very well built plane just as good as anything American built if their is such a thing anymore. OH and BTW that was one of my more expensive planes, but then maybe Chief Aircraft runs the price up.
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Old 06-16-2012, 06:24 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by dahawk View Post
You already have some good answers here. Do not place an order with them with anything in the order on backorder. I have had good luck with HK but always kept my expectations fairly low, especially in terms of shipping costs and delivery time. For planes, they have some impressive models. I've been keeping my eye on the Durafly line up.

To Jet's point, read the reviews on RCG,

Hawk
I cut the rest of the quote just to keep this shorter. I agree about the Durafly line up those are some nice looking planes especially that F4U and the price is way better the Horizon Hobby or Eflite F4U.

I try to stay away from RCG I seem to get frustrated with all the um "EXPERTS" over there but I'll try to take your advise and check out the reviews.
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Old 06-16-2012, 06:34 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by JetPlaneFlyer View Post
Rule # 1 when shopping with HK... NEVER buy backordered items
That seems to be the most common thing is to avoid back orders so I will. I generally try to anyway just because you never know when it will be back in stock, even with well know US company's like tower because they are usually buying something from another company to sell to us.
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Old 06-19-2012, 02:08 PM   #17
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I use to buy the PZ warbirds and really liked what i got,the trouble was i started to get most of there warbirds and the cost started to mount up,so i had to look for some where were i could get the same sort of plane for less money,so i did some research and came up with HK and i've never looked back.

That was around 5 years ago and i been shopping with them ever since,as i said above i'm more into warbirds and EDF jets,so now i get most of my warbirds and EDF jets from HK from there Durafly range,which are really good for value IMHO,i get quite a bit more for my money now then when i use to just buy the PZ models,with the Durafly range i get flaps,retracts,LED lights and so on,which comes as standard for most of that range,i now pay less than i use to pay and that includes the postage too.

Don't get me wrong i really like the PZ planes and still buy the odd one now but to be honest there are a bit pricey for me thats all,so i'm not here bashing HH or PZ just stating why i went over to Hobbyking.

As for the two planes you mentioned haasjj i don't own them but i've read good things about them,plus if you go over to Youtube and look for a couple of channels run by Bruce over in NZ you will find he has the first one you picked and i think you might find one of his club mate has the Edge 540,i can't be 100% sure on the last one though but i know for sure he has the first one,the channels you should look for are xjet and RCModelreviews,he has a lot of videos on both channels so you might have to search for them but they are there and he does seem to rate the first one.

I've got a good few models off HK and they have been everything they were advertised on there website,so i'm more than happy with them,if your not sure on the planes you speak of why not just go the product page for each model and read the customer reviews on them,thats what i do as they don't normally hold back on anything they don't like mate,plus if your still not sure just ask a question in the discussion tab,you can find both the reviews and the discussion tabs just under the price of the model your looking at.
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Old 06-19-2012, 03:34 PM   #18
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Pure-D, unadulterated crap, from a thoroughly dishonorable bunch.
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Old 06-21-2012, 01:01 PM   #19
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Outstanding batteries (blue Turnigy I mean) - maybe the best available anywhere. The other stuff is variable in quality. Lousy support, though, so you'd better know what you are doing.
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Old 06-22-2012, 01:28 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by fmw View Post
Outstanding batteries (blue Turnigy I mean) - maybe the best available anywhere. The other stuff is variable in quality. Lousy support, though, so you'd better know what you are doing.

+1. If the USA warehouse has the item then shipping time is a lot quicker. The main thing is know what your buying and be sure it's in stock.

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Old 06-22-2012, 01:42 PM   #21
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Hmmm.. based on my experience batteries are one thing I'd not get from Hobbyking. The ones i've got have never performed as good as, say, Gens Ace or Hyperion and havent lasted at all well. I have to admit that i only tried one of the Blue Turnigy types but i've had a few Zippy's and Nanotecs and they have all performed poorly and died early.

This is not just my subjective opinion either. Performance of a battery can be measured if you have something to measure battery internal resistance (Ir). Lower internal resistance gives higher battery performance because the battery voltage will hold up better under load and it wont generate so much heat. I can measure Ir with my iCharger:
  • Measuring a 30c 2200,Ah Gens Ace I get an average Ir of 4 mOhm
  • Measuring a brand new 40c 1800mAh Zippy I get an average of 12 mOhm

Both batteries are rated for similar amps so I'd expect Ir to be the same however the reality is that the Zippy has 3 times the resistance of a Gens Ace!
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Old 06-22-2012, 03:03 PM   #22
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FWIW, I just measured one of my Zippy 4s 3000mAh 20C and the Ri was 6 mOhm according to the Hyperion charger I used. I was pretty surprised to see such a good number from an $18 battery!

AMA #959089
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Old 06-22-2012, 05:47 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by NJSwede View Post
FWIW, I just measured one of my Zippy 4s 3000mAh 20C and the Ri was 6 mOhm according to the Hyperion charger I used. I was pretty surprised to see such a good number from an $18 battery!
yeah, that's not bad, a 3000mAh 30c Gens Ace is about 2-3 mOhm. Generally larger batteries have lower Ir, also higher 'c' rating should also have lower Ir.

As the 1800 40c Zippy is rated for more amps than your 20c 3000 Zippy the smaller battery 'should' have less Ir but in reality it's twice as high. The truth is the Zippy batteries seem to perform identically regardless of marked C rating. They all seem to be somewhere around 15-20c regardless of what's marked on the battery.

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Old 06-22-2012, 06:01 PM   #24
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I have a shipment of Zippy 4s 2200mAh 40C coming in next week. I'll be interested to see how they perform. The plan is to run them in my ridiculously over-propped MoneyShot. BTW, the 3000mAh 20C Zippies I'm using now come down barely warm in my MoneyShot, even after some abuse.

I guess I'm just lucky with HK stuff!

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Old 06-22-2012, 06:15 PM   #25
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I too am unimpressed with Nano-tech batteries but I have some 20C Zippies that have maybe 80 flights and they are holding up really well. I consider Nano-tech, Zippy and Turnigy C ratings to be about 2x overstated and use them accordingly.

Haven't tried Gens-Ace (always seem to be backordered in the sizes I want) but have heard good reports. Their C ratings probably are more accurate.

When you correct for C ratings, a "45C" Zippy costs about the same as a "20C" Gens-Ace (both shipped from USA).

It's never too late to have a happy childhood.
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