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  1. #121
    Join Date
    3rd July 2015
    Posts
    5
    Quote Originally Posted by rocketron1948 View Post
    I suspect Estes was one of the cash cows for Hobbico. According to some research I did Estes employs 200 people and has sales of around $34 million. There will be buyers for Estes.

    Rocketron
    Wow! 200 employees, that's a lot compared to a lot of hobby companies. The model train company I work for has about 50 million in sales I think with 110 employees.
    Yes, someone will buy them

    Jeff

  2. #122
    Join Date
    18th January 2009
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    1,269
    Quote Originally Posted by rocketron1948 View Post
    I suspect Estes was one of the cash cows for Hobbico. According to some research I did Estes employs 200 people and has sales of around $34 million. There will be buyers for Estes.

    Rocketron
    That headcount is way outdated. For the past 15-20 years or so they are somewhere around 30-50 employees. Heck, they only have one R&D guy where they used to have three or four. When most of your product comes on containers from China, many going direct to distributors, you don't need that many in warehousing. The only manufacturing they do there is motors. No more wood shop, no more print shop, the machine shop only produces parts for the Mabels. Very little packaging. I know in 2010 they produced the Saturn V run there at the plant (somewhere they posted photos...) but it looked like they brought in temporary help for it or the office staff pitched in. Marketing staff, customer service staff, finance staff, inventory tracking staff, IT staff.

    For example and in comparison, I worked in a furniture company with $20+ million in sales and we had 17 staff covering all those positions. Manufacturing was done overseas, and 80% of our product went directly to our customers. And we had a warehouse staff of two to handle the rest. And now the furniture company is even smaller; they now farm out IT, Marketing, and warehousing.

    Roy Green
    nar12605 L2
    Southern Area Rocketry

  3. #123
    Join Date
    9th April 2011
    Location
    Plano, TX
    Posts
    2,563
    My first thought in all of this is who will wind up importing Futaba? Certainly not Horizon. In the end it is a sign of the times. As it has been already said, real craft hobbies are no longer in vogue. I can't stomach going into what passes as RC stores anymore. They are't what they were 20-30 years ago, they are more toy stores now. Cheap and disposable. I have been lamenting this for years. Enough to make me take a much longer step back to Ukie planes and diesel power while those little gems can still be purchased.
    Jarrett Dorough

    Most people are average

  4. #124
    Join Date
    4th August 2011
    Location
    Lincolnton NC
    Posts
    5,333
    Quote Originally Posted by grouch View Post
    In the end it is a sign of the times. As it has been already said, real craft hobbies are no longer in vogue. I can't stomach going into what passes as RC stores anymore. They are't what they were 20-30 years ago, they are more toy stores now. Cheap and disposable.
    Reality slap!! You're right and so was I to feel like we are a dying breed. The true craftsman in a hobby these days has died or thinned out severely. BUT, we're not gone....yet. These forums shows us both, those that take the easy path and those that won't blink an eye to fabricating something they need or want. Today's kids might see where a fin got lost from a kit they bought, and ditch the kit because it was incomplete. Unlike a craftsman who would simply cut one from a piece of scrap. This is an exaggeration to some extent but you get the picture. "You mean I gotta glue my own fins on? That sucks"

    Your RC store note reminds me of the drastic path taken by Radio Shack just before they started to crumble. Used to be, I could go in RS and get stuff nobody else carried so I could finish some electronic project. My last couple of visits were a disappointment. Phones for days and RC toys were abundant. The real electronic stuff was narrowed down to a little bit of wire, a few small tools and a handful of connectors. Nary an electronic piece or part anywhere. Sad........
    Thinking outside the box is normal for me. Went inside the box once and got claustrophobic.
    Can't never did!
    Inventions weren't created by skeptics.
    There's a bright side to every screwed up week.


  5. #125
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,171
    Again, I think you need to step back and see what is being done in RC beyond the hobby shop. There is a huge amount of scratch building still going on, in foamboard, foam built up etc, above and beyond traditional wood. However those are people who grow toward it after trying out the rtf planes, A lot of hobby shops don't carry the parts and things I need for scratch building so I order that online. I dont' think that the craft of RC is dying, it's just that many more new people are trying out RC that probably would not have before due to the hurdle of building. It's also creating better flyers I think because I found that people who built their own planes were much more cautious when flying them, while if it's just an arf you tend to push it more, getting into trouble is how to learn how to get out of trouble, if you know what I mean. Of course there are bozos who will remain bozos. The problem is that it's much easier to just carry/stock an arf where everything is in one box than carrying lots of little bits and pieces, people get bored so companies are continually coming out with new arfs to get sales, margins are tight, online competition is high for those.


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