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Death of Local Hobby Shops.

Old 04-03-2017, 01:57 AM
  #26  
Vic Z
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Maybe a little bit off subject but I for one am becoming concerned about the death of Wattflyer. Have been checking in for the last several months and this place has become kind of a snoozefest.
Sad to see. I used to get allot of good info on here.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:09 AM
  #27  
mclarkson
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It's definitely quieter than it was five years ago.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:43 AM
  #28  
Don Sims
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For sure, the "new" owners don't allow us to market the site or send out mass emails. We miss the high traffic days.
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Old 04-03-2017, 07:22 AM
  #29  
solentlife
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WF is still the best ....

WE the members need to look after it ... if we don't post / contribute - it will go like many other good sites.

Nigel
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:46 PM
  #30  
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I've always enjoyed walking into a hobby store and gazing at all the hanging airplanes, helicopters, etc. from the ceiling and I really am going to miss them but I would much rather sit in the comforts of my home while ordering from California, Texas, Michigan, and other places that I don't have to drive to only to find they are out of what I need. I can 'click' on a store and if they don't have it, click till I find one that does and no wasted time and gas. The internet CAN BE a great tool BUT it is indeed putting small time businesses OUT of business!! I am sure that by now any local hobby shop has put up an internet site as they can work both ways and still remain firm inside a real building for us to walk into if we want. Where I live in Florida, we had a local shop open up and I walked in and bought a Cub airplane and misc. parts but they didn't last a year but it was great to have a REAL brick and mortar store while we had them. I'm sure that the internet doomed them and they were a big TRAXXAS 'racing RC' store. I was disappointed that when I would go in for airplane stuff ALL I would see on 90 % of their walls were TRAXXAS race car items. NOW, I'm into TRAXXAS and where are they???
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:14 PM
  #31  
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"NOW, I'm into TRAXXAS and where are they???"

Depends on where you live........out here in SoCal, like the brick & mud establishments I mentioned in a previous post, Traxxas is everywhere, even their little quads (multi rotors) have become popular and can be purchased off the shelf...........there are at least three RC off road tracks near me (within 30miles) that are jammed packed and SRO on the weekends.....even in the rain......!
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:20 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Vic Z View Post
Maybe a little bit off subject but I for one am becoming concerned about the death of Wattflyer. Have been checking in for the last several months and this place has become kind of a snoozefest.
Sad to see. I used to get allot of good info on here.
It'll be ok Vic. I joined in about 2005 or shortly after this site was born, but I think that was close to it, but I left for about 10 years after 2007 ( restoring cars)but now I'm back and everyone can rejoice once again...... ... I also joined the other groups related and connected to this one as well that Grand-Fathered this one in. But, it seems this group has disconnected it's self from the others. Was that a good thing? No worries. I have many friends that I kept in contact with that may still be members here ( but I don't see it)and I will do my best to get them to contribute here. I predict many more folks will return to this great site, and newbies as well. I am once again a NEWBIE!!! Don't sulk over how many aren't here anymore, let's go out and find new members!!! We have FACEBOOK ( and I joined that when it started and now MeWe ) and those can be great tools for bringing our friends here!!! When I returned a week or so ago, my old screen name was no more so I will be using one that I use everywhere including my own local social website forum. Let's get busy and farm for new members and more cool friends!!!! BTW, I'm going after a Super Cub!! I know, I know...been around, but you never get tired of the famous Super Cub!!! And BTW, I'm more of a HELI and 4 X 4 kinda fella.
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:26 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by pizzano View Post
"NOW, I'm into TRAXXAS and where are they???"

Depends on where you live........out here in SoCal, like the brick & mud establishments I mentioned in a previous post, Traxxas is everywhere, even their little quads (multi rotors) have become popular and can be purchased off the shelf...........there are at least three RC off road tracks near me (within 30miles) that are jammed packed and SRO on the weekends.....even in the rain......!
I meant my local hobby shop......... .... I still like Tamiya and still want that Clod Buster!!!After all, I am a big Chevy fan.
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Old 04-03-2017, 05:37 PM
  #34  
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My son had no problems finding anything Traxxas at the LHS.....it's when he got serious with Arrma and Axial vehicles, that the product lines started thinning out and we had to shop on-line......
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:11 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by WizardMaster View Post
It'll be ok Vic. I joined in about 2005 or shortly after this site was born, but I think that was close to it, but I left for about 10 years after 2007 ( restoring cars)but now I'm back and everyone can rejoice once again...... ... I also joined the other groups related and connected to this one as well that Grand-Fathered this one in. But, it seems this group has disconnected it's self from the others. Was that a good thing? No worries. I have many friends that I kept in contact with that may still be members here ( but I don't see it)and I will do my best to get them to contribute here. I predict many more folks will return to this great site, and newbies as well. I am once again a NEWBIE!!! Don't sulk over how many aren't here anymore, let's go out and find new members!!! We have FACEBOOK ( and I joined that when it started and now MeWe ) and those can be great tools for bringing our friends here!!! When I returned a week or so ago, my old screen name was no more so I will be using one that I use everywhere including my own local social website forum. Let's get busy and farm for new members and more cool friends!!!! BTW, I'm going after a Super Cub!! I know, I know...been around, but you never get tired of the famous Super Cub!!! And BTW, I'm more of a HELI and 4 X 4 kinda fella.

Glad you are back.
Let's make WF great again
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Old 04-03-2017, 11:13 PM
  #36  
Rockin Robbins
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I for one resolve to spend more time on Wattflyer--the friendliest RC website! I was a little surprised to learn this afternoon that Wattflyer doesn't support https connections.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:48 AM
  #37  
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Here in the Lacey, Olympia, WA, area, our LHS, Remote Control Hobbies of Olympia seems to be bucking the trend of dying hobby shops.

Thom who owns and runs the shop, is an active flyer and club leader, and every person that works there is a RC modeler. They all have there specialties weather it's airplanes of any kind, electric, nitro, gas, glider, gremlin racing, ALES, cars, rock crawlers, heli's or anything else RC. there is someone that can give you a straight honest answer, no BS.

I have seen hobby shops come and go over the 57 years I have been a modeler, and the only ones that survive are the shops that know by personal experience what they are talking about. I have a few test questions that I have used to see if a new shop is worth bothering with.

Hobbytown USA moved in about 2 miles from my previous home, I went in about a week after they opened and asked one of my questions. The answer the guy gave showed me they did not know what was going on. They lasted about 6 months. I continued to go out to the Parkland hobby shop that Vic goes to.

If I had the money I was hoping to make after selling my home, I would buy everything from Thom and crew. But the way things turned out, I have to watch my pennies, so I shop online also, even at that I am in the shop almost every week. Sometimes the shop is so busy, it is almost hard to get into. I have seen over 20 people in it at once, that is when I sort of become a watchdog. In the Olympia area, we must have 300 RC airplane flyers alone, and I have no idea how many car and heli guys, but there must be a bunch of them also.

I am very thankful for Thom's efforts to keep the shop stocked and ready for anything. His wife works some days also, it is always nice to see her.
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Old 04-04-2017, 03:52 PM
  #38  
Vic Z
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I try to buy what i can from John and the guys at the Parkland Hobbytown. They all fly, build, and know what they are talking about. Great guys. I make a point of doing business there because i need need them to be there when i need help.
I do however buy batteries and such on line as they can't compete price wise. Not even close.
@ Wildflyer, we burried my father in law at Tahoma National Cemetary 2 Fridays back with full honors and color guard. He was an old WW2 vet. PGR particpated and they were awesome. Thank you for what you do. It really matters.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:28 PM
  #39  
Wildflyer
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I am sorry for your loss. We are all in debt to the veterans of WW2, and all other vets also. They are what makes America great.

Unfortunately I haven't been able to ride with PGR for a while because I am trying to do some repair on my bike. New tires, brakes, and front shock seals. Guess that's what happens when you own a 32 year old bike. 1985 Honda Goldwing LTD.

Maybe some day we will meet Vic, I have ducted fan F-14 with small wheels, I need to bring it to the MRRCS field. Maybe on your warbird day.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:39 PM
  #40  
Vic Z
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Let me know when. I am usually there on Wednesdays, but Thursdays can work as well. Mostly depends on the weather.
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:51 PM
  #41  
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+We still have one hobby shop that the name has been around before I got into CL flying back in the 50's. It is Hobby Haven of Overland Park. What has kept them going is staying with what is selling even though it makes it hard on me when I need something for what ever I'm working on. They used to have a good assortment of balsa and ply, but I guess there are not too many building planes of any kind now. They have a lot of RTF and ARF on the shelves. Propellors and engines are sparse as well as dope. The quads aren't as many as I thought there would be as well as the cars. They have a great assortment of plastic kits. Some of the employees have been there since they moved to the present location. The Americas Hobby Center went out of business as I blame that for mismanagement. The last item I got from them was an LA 46 to convert to CL. I still try to support Hobby Haven, but when They tell me they can order something and it will be in stock when they get it, I just wait. But, with what the government has done the last decade or so has made it rough on a person on fixed income. Well, back to building and finishing planes.
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Old 04-04-2017, 09:24 PM
  #42  
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Glad to see WF still hanging in there. I recognize some usernames and see some new ones posting regularly. That's good. Traffic seems a lot slower now, then it was before, but you don't need 30 answers to your question, you only need one correct one.

As for LHS's, ain't but a few left that I know of around me. Well only one that I can think of.

Frank
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Old 04-05-2017, 01:31 AM
  #43  
dereckbc
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Well if you are a member of AMA, just look at the latest copy of Model Aviation on page 8. Pretty significant statement the hobby is dying. They go so far to say advertisement is way down, thus less content in the magazine.

My club certainly reflects this. When I joined the club had just over 100 members, today just 23. Of those 23, 20 of them could be gone tommorow and in the Obituaries of the local news paper. At 58 years of age I am the forth youngest member. Thos 70 missing members, most are dead or lost interest.

As you look in Model Aviation one thing that strikes me and stands out. All you see is old fossils. I am also a ham radio operator and I am the youngest member. Our radio club meeting have a lot of 02 tanks in the way.

Pretty clear to me youth is not interested., they would rather text or facebook.
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Old 04-05-2017, 02:49 AM
  #44  
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It's more than Facebook, texting and in general personal communication technology that has chased the millennial and younger generations away from the RC hobby, specifically aircraft.

Three of the biggest contributors are regulations, urban open space shrinkage and generational gap in participation (or lack there-of).

One does not have to research very deep to discover how laws governing this hobby and related functions (particularly in the U.S.), have increased ten fold over the past 15yrs..........no one likes to be constantly reminded or in fear of infraction, when it comes to entertainment or having good clean fun. Our kids have seen the results of this, be it caused by idiots breaking the law.

It wasn't that long ago when one could toss a plane up in our front yard or the open field across the street without retribution. Not only are "open spaces" shrinking due to development, but the folks moving into these areas have little patience or interest in things flying in the air around their "security" comfort level.......thank the idiots and the laws.

If you look around at the local " sanctioned" RC fields, not only are the new member numbers reducing, but there is little "young blood" participating. Some of this is due to the normal hobby attrition rate, but a lot of this has to do with younger fathers are finding frustration with the "freedom" of the hobby (see laws and idiots), younger fathers are spending their time and money on RV equipment, sporting events and younger fathers are spending less time building bonds or relationships with their kids in many hobbies due to a lack of time (down) available and or sending their kids off to baseball, soccer and basketball camps year round.

Also, todays kids (under 20) seem to rather spend time (what little they do) with Grandpa hunting, range shooting (they love guns), going to sporting events or staying much more active then those of the 60's, 70's and even the 80's.........sitting around the hobby table or standing around at the airfield just seems to bore them out of their minds......unless of course there's phone app. they can use to build a plane or fly a plane outside from their living room Xbox big screen.......lol

It's a different world out there today and social influences tug at our children's children more today than anytime in history.....as a Grandpa, I just try to stay the course and always be available for them, in the event their interest peeks on a subject I can reel them in on.....lol......didn't work with my son or daughter in aerial RC, but they both got serious with ground and pound vehicles for at least a couple of years........maybe the Grandson will take to planes and quads......I'm not holding my breath.
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Old 04-05-2017, 07:15 AM
  #45  
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Bringing new blood into RC is nothing new. When I was a SMAE rep in UK - we had endless debates of how to get youngsters into the hobby .... that was in the 1980's ....

Gameboys, Computers etc. were more interesting for them. You also have to look at time and effort along with financial to achieve good flying. Compare to a screen game or phone texting / Facebook ......

LHS now needs to have serious cash tied up in inventory due to the 'cheque-book' style models today. But he can't sell them - because you can buy cheaper online.

Nigel
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Old 04-05-2017, 04:58 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by Don Sims View Post
For sure, the "new" owners don't allow us to market the site or send out mass emails. We miss the high traffic days.
Why wouldn't they want their property to be as successful as possible? That makes no sense.
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